A normal day at the office

A normal day at the office

My grey filing cabinet in the back office

My predecessor over 42 years ago did my job for a few years and her predecessor got the sack for keeping (and drinking presumably?) a bottle of vodka in the bottom drawer of the filing cabinet…………… my day will tell you why…….

Have you ever had one of those days where everything starts off as normal then before you know it everything changes? You get up in the morning, go through the motions of getting ready for work or what you have planned for the day. So far, so good. An hour into the morning and chores are done, breakfast stuff away, everyone fed and watered and its your turn to get ready. Stop. You think of something that you meant to do and right, quick look at the time – you can do it. But it goes wrong. Clear it up later. No time to sort, just get to work now. Maybe the day will get better. OK, work kitchen – first things first – coffee. Drop kettle when filling it and tap water sprays everywhere. The day should improve surely? A million emails……mmmm which one to tackle first? Phone goes….Holiday guests cannot find their arrival details – send them again. Owner wants copy of statement – send it again. Guests TV gone wrong (people do like to fiddle with knobs when on holiday) – arrange for maintenance man and ring the owner to let them know. Ants running across guest’s kitchen – so go buy some ant powder or and trap. (This was not said in the way I have written it by the way). Good day so far? Phone constant so you cannot do paperwork that is getting behind. Coffee time. Mrs Smith, a regular for many years, now with her grandchildren pops in to have a chat…….go through availability for next year …….. discuss the weather, children, grandchildren and put the world to rights. Another half an hour gone. Phone goes. The other phone goes. Mr Jones calls in – his bin has not been emptied. Can I sort it out immediately as they have their own rubbish and nowhere to put it? Phone again, emails cleared by 12 noon, phone, repeat. Thought coast was clear to get onto the paperwork and catch up. Emails popping up in my PC’s corner. And they are not coming in one by one……en mass, by the hundred. Lady comes in, she is lovely. Property is just what she wanted. She is very grateful and thanks us for our service. Aw, that’s nice. Phone rings again then person in to chat. Smile…… coffee again. OK, lunch – salad as usual for obvious reasons. The afternoon is full of the same for my colleague and myself. Gentleman puts his head round the door, “Hello ladies. Keys returned from Smithy House. Thank you for sorting out my holiday after Covid, we had a lovely time and will book again when we get home.” We thank him and wish him a safe journey home as he plops a bag on our table. We take a look when he has gone. Biscuits, aww, that’s nice and we remember to call or email when he gets home to say he was very naughty, but biscuits are much appreciated, thank you. Some work getting done. Emails written, phone calls sorted, etc. Another day at the office. And that is just the basics. My desk is always a pile of scattered paperwork. Everything is a priority but which to do first? This is just the tip of the iceberg. There is a heck of a lot more detail involved. The work gets done, sometimes behind, but that is how it is. Nice people, rude people, friendly chatty people. But we also have the moaners, story maker uppers, awkward ones, ones which cannot follow instructions and more which I have told you about before. This is what every day is like in our holiday home world. And the pièce de resistance was the wine brought in by a long-standing client for each of us as our half year ‘thank you’.

So, with the stress levels running high, but still smiling through it all, I often think of my grey filing cabinet in the back office (the very same one at the top of the story). Crikey, we would not have time to take a slug of this, barely time to make a coffee as it is. Anyway, Claire and I would know exactly where the other one was as the filing cabinet does not open and shut quietly! However, having a treat of biscuits or chocs or the occasional bottle of vino are far better enjoyable treats. (PS: I do like a nice V & T with ice and a slice but not in the office!)


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