A New Job and A Wedding (not mine)

It has officially been a week since I started my new job so I thought I’d share my first impressions with anyone who might be interested. Besides the fact that I get to work in the same building as one of my very best friends, thus having a lunch buddy most days, I am actually enjoying work at a huge company. I wasn’t sure I would as I have mostly worked at medium to small sized companies, but there are many amenities a larger company can offer. For instance, there is a different restaurant that brings food for purchase every day of the week, so you don’t have to leave the building. There is also a parking garage that keeps my car cool during the day so that I am not scorched when I leave work. There are elevators for ones convenience although I take the stairs to avoid that dizzy feeling I get in elevators. And there are vending machines on every floor!

Ah, but these are just the little things (having my BF there is not a little thing, for the record, just everything else I wrote about). The best parts of my job are not having to answer the phone and being able to complete a task without being interrupted. Listing to my music (instead of the classical station ALL DAY LONG) or podcasts with the use of ear buds, effectively creating the “my own little world” effect (LOVE this). And for the administrative part of my brain, I get to sort and organize docs all day long. Sigh! I guess you could say, “So far, so good.” I am curious though about the end of the year when my contract is up and what my journey will look like then. But I am REALLY trying to stay in the now.

I briefly mentioned my friend Leslie’s wedding last week but I want to take some time to GUSH all about it. It was beautiful, warm, colorful, fun and delicious! Everything seemed to go as planned. B and I had the privilege of shooting the wedding and got to witness the inner workings. I have a new appreciation for the assembly of a Saree. It’s amazing how quickly and efficiently the women that outfitted Leslie were at making a beautifully designed dress out of one LARGE piece of intricately decorated fabric and safety pins. In a hotel room filled with 12-15 people you could have heard one of those many safety pins drop. Everyone was mesmerized by the process. In the end, Leslie looked like a goddess!

And what better location for a goddess than a museum! The NC Museum of Art to be exact. The intimate ceremony took place in one of the gardens outside the museum with just the immediate families present and included a “ring warming” (which I loved). The party that ensued not long after included a wonderful pallet of tastes, colorful garments and lively music EVERYONE could dance to  (Drummers accompanied the DJ = WOW!). However, it was the people who attended and the two amazing people we were there to honor, that made the wedding what it was. AWESOME! Now, to capture all that in a 6-10 minute video…shoo, B has his work cut out for him!

L&V back

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The Dead Thing Saga Continues and Ends

I haven’t been very good about updating on the Dead Thing saga, but by the end of this post you will be fully informed.  Sadly this may be the last post on the subject because the Dead Thing was finally found! Two days ago as a matter of fact thanks to an invasion of flies and a VERY brave critter control specialist. But I am jumping ahead of myself.

My first account of the “the smell” confirmed there was something dead somewhere in the recesses of the crawl space under my place of work. The first critter controller was unable to find the body. However, during that initial search we discovered a significant hole in the back wall from which the smell was traveling into our office. That led to my next assignment: find a contractor to seal up the hole. Within two days the contractor arrived armed with spray foam and…moth balls! Not knowing the full effect of moth balls he explained to me that since there was a critter problem they would put the moth balls in the hole prior to sealing it up. Apparently critters do not like moth balls. Neither do humans. An hour after the contractor left, my boss was asking me to get him back now to get the moth balls out! It was worse than the smell we had been dealing with for a week. The strong toxic smell of moth balls times 100 because an entire box had been emptied into the wall +  a slightly less-powering smell of rotting animal (we hoped that’s what it was) = NOT a good combination!

It took a couple more days for the contractor to fit us in. He removed the foam, took as many moth balls out as possible and sealed the hole back up with foam. In case anyone ever asks you “as many moth balls as possible” is never enough. Even if you remove every single last one of them it can still take weeks for the smell to dissipate. And since he didn’t remove every last one of them the smell was only slightly less-overwhelming, leading to my next assignment: get the contractor back again to tear the wall out if he has to and get every single last ball out of the wall!

The next time the contractor came out (we are at week 3 now) it was with his boss. It was determined that the wall would have to be dismantled from the outside to remove the last remaining moth balls, and on the third try they got ALL the moth balls. So everything was right in the world again, right? Of course not! That would not make a very interesting story now would it?

Over the next week, the moth ball smell lessened and the death smell lingered and moved. Eventually it went away altogether. Instead of going out quietly (because how cool would that be?), it left in its place an invasion of the biggest, blackest flies I have ever seen. At first we noticed 6 – 8 of them in the windows. My boss and co-worker took up the challenge (a little too eagerly if you ask me) of ridding the office of these offensively buzzing creatures the old fashion way, rolled up newspaper style, and they were successful…until the next day. The flies had multiplied over night. There were now at least 12 – 14 flies in the building! After some more effective swatting, I suggested getting a fly catcher (you know, one of those strips that hang from the ceiling in almost every corner store I’ve ever been in).

I have a new appreciation for those fly strips. They really work! The only trick is trying to open them and hang them without getting stuck yourself. If only their were a hidden camera for all the mess ups I had.  However, for every one I put up I caught at least 15 – 20 flies,  sometimes more. This lasted at least week before…

enter Brave Critter Control guy!

When he saw the issue, he went on a search for the source of the flies. He climbed into the attic (without a ladder I might add). He just shimmed his way up there. Then he moved to the crawl space. When he finally emerged about 30 minutes later, he asked for a trash bag because he had found the dead thing! While in it’s current position it was unidentifiable he was able to confirm that it was indeed an animal and not a human. Phew! It wasn’t until he pulled it out that he discovered it was an opossum that has been dead for about – you guessed it – 2 months! This was not his first trip to the abyss so how did he finally find it?  The trail of really big, really black flies led him straight to it. He also discovered how they were entering into the office and  stopped it up for us. Since then there have been no new fly sightings!

So that is the end of this saga. Just thought you might want to know.

The Dead Thing

I started a new job about 3 months ago. It’s a good job but there have been  things I’ve had to get used to. For instance  I haven’t had a job that requires I dress professionally in…maybe ever (at the most it’s been business causal). My employers dress in suits on a daily basis setting the bar high. Thankfully I’ve had friends with great taste pass things down to me over the years so I didn’t have to go out and buy a new wardrobe (Yay for free clothing! and friends!). I’ve also never worked in an office of all men before; three serious men with little time for chit chat, which is understandable given the nature of their business. My background consists of mostly non-profit and human service experience, meaning I’ve had the pleasure of working with a diverse group of people at any given time with conversation a plenty! Suffice it to say, my experience here has been a lonely one until…

Enter “The Smell”. It started faintly enough. My super mom sense of smell picked up on it first. “Do you smell that?” I asked the least serious of the three. He replies, ” I thought I smelled something, but I must have gotten used to it.”

Day two: The smell is still present. It’s gone from “Did I really smell something?” to “Yup, there is definitely a stinky source and we need to find it pronto.” So I addressed the only other female in the office, Miss Intern, who is here very part time (not enough for organic female bonding to occur). Together we ruled out the garbage as the culprit. Maybe something in the walls?

Day three: It’s getting serious. One of the bosses has also detected the small, and you know it has to be bad if a man with allergies can smell it. After speculations of what may have died and where, there is some joking about who done it. Yes, I did say joking! And kidding! The first sign of life.

My boss instructs me to call Critter Control.

Day four: Critter Control can’t find the source, but it’s confirmed…it a dead something, and we have mice. Not inside the building, just under it. There is more discussion around the copier (we don’t have a water cooler). More laughs and pleasantries shared.

Several days later there is still no solution and the stink lingers, but that stink has been able to do something I didn’t think was possible. It created a pseudo bonding experience. It reassured me that humor does exist in my office. It allowed for free flowing conversation (for a few days at least). It gave me hope that I may again laugh while I work one day. My dear Dead Thing, you did not die in vain!