Hi, Joe’s readers. It is a new year, and it feels so weird not to be spending Wednesday mornings with Joe anymore. We worked together for nine years and did a lot in that time. It was the right decision to stop, but I miss Joe and a bunch of other things. I came up with six or seven to share in a blog entry, then broke a couple up to reach ten items. I hope you enjoy my list. Hi, Joe!
#10. My Cat Naps weekly engagement calendar book. Every year I got a new one and used it to keep my special date reminders, my work hours, my appointments, and Joe’s appointments. I loved those cat pictures. This year I have a smaller pocket calendar from the bank which works just fine but is not them same.
#9. Going to the library and the bank after work. It was so easy to leave Joe’s place and walk to first Schlow Centre Region Library and then to my bank. I would get a week’s worth of books at Schlow, before taking my paycheck to the bank and get a week’s worth of money. I would take a CATA bus to and from work downtown, so parking was never a problem! I have worked out other times to visit both places, but it is not as convenient.
#8. Joe’s cat Princess Josie. I am not as close to PJ as I was to his late cat Keekee. But I think I would have gotten closer to her with a few more years. I was looking forward to watching her mature into an older cat.
#7. Joe’s friends. Over nine years of meeting Joe at his apartment building, I have gotten to know a lot of the residents – some only by sight – that have come and gone. Joe is a friendly and generous man, so he has been close friends with a lot of them, and I have gotten to know them through him. I will miss exchanging hellos with them, especially the women he goes to breakfast with most days.
#6. Bear Spring Camps. This one is odd, since I have only been to the vacation spot in Maine only through Joe’s descriptions, but I will miss being connected to it through Joe, and hearing about his trip when he gets back every August. I will miss taking care of his cat while he is away (though last year I was glad that his friend Smith helped with this as I couldn’t get there every day Joe was gone) and giving him updates on her. I will miss the vacation folder I have added to every year so that now it is thick with details of hotel rooms, rental cars, and dates, and we would use it to book that year’s hotel rooms and rental car. ( I will have to tell Joe where I stored that!)
#5. Organizing – the files, mail, appointments, etc. I have already mentioned some of my organizing routine with the date book and the vacation folders. There were many folders over the years, and many pieces of paper and mail that needed to be sorted and either stored or thrown away. I also kept two sheets of paper with weekly To Do and Tasks Done lists. They came in very handy over the years.
#4. Writing and editing with Joe. He would dictate as I typed and then we would edit his writing. It was so fun searching for and finding the right word or phrase. During editing, it is like magic to take a sentence that isn’t quite working, and make it good. To make it smooth and say just what we had in mind. It is the best feeling.
#3. Goofing around with my friend. In between tasks or when we finished early, Joe and I would talk about TV shows, world events, things in our past, and just in general take a work break. We laughed a lot and enjoyed each other’s company. We still talk and text, but it isn’t the same as being in the same room every week.
#2. The blog entries. Between the two of us, this blog site has been updated an average of twice a week since late 2011. I typed Joe’s dictation for most of this site’s 871 posts. We covered a lot of subjects. I will miss doing this form of communication every week.
#1. Visiting with Joe and catching up on his life every week. Joe has been my friend since high school, and I enjoyed working for/with him. As I said above, it won’t be the same not being in the same room with him.
Life is full of changes, and many times those changes are abrupt and shocking. Joe and I ending our work relationship is one the planned changes and it is okay. Joe and I built a lot in his apartment office in nine years, and I am proud of what we accomplished.