Sunday July 2nd, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: appreciation.

Well, made it through. Was a bit more manageable today, as I actually had time to look at all the washrooms (not just the one at the main beach) and even cleaned up a few parks. Still was a battle to get into the ladies washroom at main beach, but not as ridiculous as yesterday.

I am very much looking forward to my four days off.

Mine:

Just before lunch today I ventured out to Cottonwood Beach to check the washrooms and do some cleaning up, as I had only unlocked the washrooms there yesterday and today. I knew it would be busy, as it's a good spot to view the fireworks, but it's also on the east side of Osoyoos. Which means you have to go over the bridge to get there. And that bridge is miserable for traffic in the summer, especially on long weekends.

Anyway. The washrooms weren't too bad. The beach had some garbage but nothing excessive. The park itself was okay too.

As I was finishing up the park I met a lady sitting on one of the benches. She thanked me for the job I was doing, which is always nice. And then, while we were still talking, another lady walked up to do the same thing.

I told them I was going to hang out there more often.

And then I came home for lunch, as heading back into town from there probably would have taken 45 minutes (normally it's less than 5 from there).

Thankfully traffic was better after my break, but I still started with Kinsman and Goodman parks (both also on the east side) to give it more time to clear up. I think getting around town this summer is going to prove to be a pretty big time management challenge.

Anyway. Back to the point. It was nice to get some appreciative feedback today. Particularly after dealing with so many people who seemed to be under the impression that either the bathrooms cleaned themselves or that any time they needed to use them was a bad time for them to be cleaned. And also that I took too long to clean them.

ANYWAY. Appreciation is good.

2 Comments:

Greg said...

I think I may have covered some responses to this in yesterday's comment (I'm efficient like that!) but I am pleased that your got some positive feedback from people for the job you're doing. It's not the easiest job in the world, and it does make (pretty much) everyone's lives better, and it deserves appreciation and a thank-you now and then, if only to acknowledge where we'd be without it.
By the way, you should write a piece about how Henri would react when confronted with the usual levels of ingratitude you have to put up with :) It would make you feel better.
So: thank-you as well for making Canada a better place and for reminding us all that Candadians are famous for their politneness, not their rudeness!

Appreciation
They followed the power-lines out of the suburbs, driving behind a blue truck for the first half-hour. It had the white logo on the side of the Parks&Recreation department and the driver kept checking his mirrors, as though wondering if he were being followed. When he turned off at West-end Lake, probably checking bathrooms and litter, and they drove past she said afterwards that she'd seen his shoulders slump and relax. His soft reply was lost to both of them as their attention was attracted by the smoke as that moment, rising up and mingling with the clouds. The power-lines were leading directly towards it.
"Do you think we appreciate things before we lose them?" she said. The smoke make her fingers itch and she tapped a cigarette out of the Lucky Strikes package on the dashboard. "Does it always have to be an adventure before you can sit back at home and enjoy the silence?"
"Silence?" He looked across, his eyes blood-shot and the dark stubble on his chin fading to white on his cheeks.
"Yeah, well, you know," she said. She lit up the cigarette and thought for a moment of her houseful of children, aunts, grandparents and people's friends, and the never-present silence that eluded her. "This silence is nice."
The car changed gear, the engine growling like a vexed cat, and bird-song burst from the trees for a moment, and she ignored his Cheshire-Cat like smile.
The smoke proved to be from a bonfire stacked four metres high, with more detritus from logging stacked nearby, and the power-lines led on. It was another five kilometres before the powerlines dipped down to the ground and met huge metal columns enrobed in discs that formed rows of soldier outside a low, squat, brick building. He stopped the car, and she lit up another cigarette. He pointed at the sign on the side of the building: Golden Kimono, No Smoking.
"We'll go in when I'm done," she said. "The angel can wait."
"It'll accuse you of dragging your bones again," he said. There was a fraction of a smile. Not enough.
"It talks a lot for a prisoner."
"Not for much longer."
She inhaled deeply on the cigarette, hoping to calm her nerves, and nodded.

[I added in an extra challenge for myself this morning, randomly: use all the track names from Topiary in the writing. Which I did :)]

Marc said...

Greg - I think you're right. Plus Henri has been absent from the blog from far too long.

This is fascinating and wonderfully written. I want more. Please.

Also: your added challenge impresses me and tempts me to attempt the same some time. That is an album of great song titles to work with, by the way.