Tuesday, December 23, 2008

And The Day Turns Quiet

I was looking forward to today. I knew from the rhythm of previous years that it would be quiet at work. After the stresses of 2008 and "The Project That Almost Broke Me" - I was looking forward to today.

I was not disappointed. I came into the office about 7:00 AM and there were three other cars in the parking lot. I got to my desk and logged into my computer and after I sorted through the incidental email I found myself down to two actionable email.

It took me fifty two minutes to resolve both of them. Ahhhhhhhh. I worked at incidental things through the day, supporting my analysts and supporting the one customer who contacted me directly.

I went out to lunch at the Grand Indian Buffet on Lawrence Expressway with my friend Don. I had a superb chicken marsala and an excellent potato and pea curry. We talked about a wide range of things, just conversation. If there was a central theme it was about what to do as we got older.

After lunch we stopped at Fry's Electronics and looked at the big screen TV's and then wandered back to the office. I have one more actionable email. I took care of it.

I spent the afternoon cleaning out the flotsam and jetsam of last year from my electronic files (that is a big job - just to give you a rough idea, I receive and send about 20,000 email a year.) I worked a couple of tickets with my analysts (it is nice to dip down in the trenches and actually have the time to teach them new tricks).

I contemplated Christmas dinner (I am going to do a barbecue slow cooked turkey breast, mashed potatoes and stuffing, and vegetable - keeping it simple and tasteful is my plan).
It is now about three thirty PM and the day is winding down. My email and the phone lines are silent. Tomorrow is going to be even quieter.

For the first time in years I am ending the year with ONE ticket in ITSM (our task management system) and the only reason that ticket remains is the customer decided to delay it until sometime in the first quarter of 2009. I am positioned, professionally, nearly perfectly to enter the new year.

On the personal level the positioning is also very well. 2008 was a brutal and stressful year on several levels - personal and professional - and it simply feels nice to slid into 2009 with no turbulence, not carrying any particularly heavy baggage into the new year. Oh, I know that every year has its challenges and I know that 2009 will not be any different - but, I learned a lot in 2008 and I suspect that those lessons, as long as I remember them, will stand me well in the coming year.

My plan tonight is pretty simple - I am going to stop at Safeway on the way home and pick up some odds and ends to prepare for the holiday and the holiday weekend that follows (all intending to keep it low key, so I am making sure the fridge and cupboard are stocked with tasty things).

Once I get home I plan on going online for a while and playing and writing some Christmas email and sending them out. I am feeling reflective tonight and that is a good feeling. I haven't decided what to have for dinner, so I may run out and get sushi. Sushi is always my fall back position when it comes to dinner, in part because I like sushi, but also because you belly up to the sushi bar and have a wide variety of selections - the whole gamut of taste senstions. (Can you tell I like sushi?)

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