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I just woke up from a three hour nap I did not intend to take.  I had planned to come home from work, eat dinner, maybe change my clothes and do a little work around the house, and then head out to Theology On Tap where Bishop Binzer was speaking.  I got to the dinner part, and the changing clothes part, but at that point I was pretty much falling asleep on my feet, so I decided to take a short nap, and set my alarm to get me up again in twenty minutes.  Famous last words…

This has been a kinda crazy week.  There was all the orientations (I have never known an organization so orientation happy before – I even have another one still to do next week), and then I plunged into my on the job training.  Frankly, I never knew that working in HR could be this intense.  When I stop in at the HR office over at UD, it always seems very quiet.  There’s no other customers waiting, and the receptionist seems in no hurry to get me through.  At this HR, though, there is always something going on.  The phone is ringing with everything from questions about benefits (I happened to start at the time of year when everyone in the hospital has to re-enroll for their benefits package) to paychecks to how exactly do we get those discounted tickets for Disney On Ice, or there’s someone stopping by to pick something up, drop something off, or ask a question.  Then there’s people coming in for interviews, or for their pre-employment screening/paperwork fest, and calling people to schedule interviews (that’s my favorite part so far).  Sometimes you’ve got a line of people out the door and the phone ringing off the hook, and a new hire who just got to the automatic deposit section of his paperwork and has a question all happening at the same time.  So far everyone has been very nice, and it’s been fun and exciting instead of awful and stressful.  Still at the end of the day, I find myself very, very tired.

I do think that this is going to be a good job for me.  It seems ideally suited to satisfy both my ADD side (no shortage of stimulation here!) and my ‘satiable curiosity.  HR people know all the dirt.  It’s true.  Everything from who’s paying child support to exactly why so and so got fired.  I’d give you examples, but I’m pretty sure that would be a violation of privacy, even if I didn’t name names.  But still, HR knows it all, and some of it is pretty darn juicy!  Plus, I’ve always thrived on situations where I got to know a lot of people.  When I was on the TOT Leadership Team, I was the one who passed out the nametags, and knew 80-90% of the people who came by their first name.  At swing dancing I could always look around a crowded dance floor and tell you exactly who everyone was, sometimes along with what city they were from, and who in the dance scene they had dated recently.  So the kind of job where you get to know half the hospital is really rather perfect for me.

The big challenge right now has been dealing with my car.  On Tuesday when I got in it to head out to my second day of orientation, I noticed that the stick shift was really, really stiff.  In fact, I had to use a lot of strength to force it to come out of one gear and into another.  The clutch was weirdly soft, with almost no resistance.  Sometimes the gears would grind, even though I had the clutch pedal pushed all the way down to the floor.  It had been just fine when I drove it home from swing club the night before, but the drive out to orientation was a bit nerve-wracking, to say the least.  I drove it back from orientation to my old work (we only had a half day, so I was heading back to catch up on some things), but when it came time to head over to the radio station for the interview with Crossroads, I ended up asking Sweet if she would come pick me up.  I had planned to have her drop me off back at work so that I could drive it home, but at the last minute, I started having flashbacks to when the brakes on my car failed, and I couldn’t do it.  So Sweet took me home, and my car is still parked at work, waiting for me to have it towed to the mechanic.

I tried to call my Hero Mechanic, but the phone number I have for him isn’t working anymore.  So I called the mechanics my parents have gone to for years (they kept multiple ramshackle vans running far longer than they really should have).  They said that it sounded like a hydraulics problem, which is something they can probably fix for not too much.  However, the soonest they could get it in would be next Monday.  In the meantime, my parents are letting my drive their huge, 13 passenger Jesus Van.  I’m deeply grateful to them – if I hadn’t been able to find alternate transportation, I would have been in deep trouble.  The van does get something like 11 miles to the gallon, so I’m not looking forward to filling up the tank!

In a way, I’m somewhat relieved that my car chose now to break down.  I am not used to good things happening, so all of this work-related good fortune happening all at once has made me very nervous.  I keep waiting for the catch – for something to go wrong, for the other shoe to drop.  The most worrisome thing that had happened was that it turned out that I’m not immune to Measles, Mumps, and Rubella after all, which just means I’ll have to get the shots from Employee Health one day next week.  It had started to be a little nerve-wracking waiting for whatever the Big One would be.  My car breaking down, as completely inconvenient as it is, is, however, exactly the kind of luck I’m familiar with.  I know how to deal with this, and it makes me feel more confident that everything else will be just fine.