Working from home can be a nightmare
Dressing up early in the morning, I just walk down to college and complete my three lectures of the day. It could be with the Post Graduates, it could also be with the Undergrads, but they are lectures in a beautiful classroom, with controlled inputs to my hour. The bell rings at the end of each hour and I move on to the next class or the next building. It is tiring to speak for three hours, but it’s a job with controlled parameters. Even phones are shut off and there is no form of interference at all. A very satisfying feeling at the end of each hour.
The guava seller grins at me on my walk home, knowing I will stop to pick up a kg of his delicious, yellow, fragrant smelling fruit. The florist points to the brand new Lilliums which have come from Ooty that morning and which I cannot resist. I walk into Bangalore One and pay my electric bill and phone bill in a matter of fifteen minutes.
Then, I walk back home and that’s when working,at home can become a nightmare.From the gate the complaints start. The maali has been fiddling with the lever of a pump which has just been repaired at great cost. Have to call him and give him dire warnings. The broom which had been bought by me for the cleaner is too tall for her to use. The complaints follow me up to the second floor in the smelling- of- dog lift. Community living is not fun especially with bull headed family who don’t really care about anyone but themselves. Lights need to be replaced and the finances of the building need to be checked, I say leave the books there I need a rest.
I take off my shoes and go to drink some cold water to wind down and eat my early lunch. Changing into more comfortable ‘home’ clothes, I settle down to work on my editing for the website, when a whatsapp message comes in about a conference call. One in Mumbai, and two in Dubai come online and we discuss the next plan of action for an upcoming conference in Dubai. When the door- bell rings. You’d better take that doorbell says one of the callers and I do while everyone waits across the globe. It’s just the delivery of a book for my book club event.
Sorry guys I say and we go back to discussing, when the help at home wants to know about a dish that is being cooked for dinner. Covering the mouth of the phone I give her instructions while the boss comes on in Dubai, all cheery and gungho, explaining what needs to be done on another website being planned. I have not heard a word he has said and he has asked me a question, to complete silence from the rest.
I request a repeat excusing my lapse, on the non- existent crackle on the line. And the conversation ebbs and flows thankfully with no interruptions besides the neighbours dog caterwauling in the distance. I have never understood the need to keep dogs in apartments and chained in kennels, poor creatures.
The conference call comes to and end and I have not heard the final cheery invite from the boss, as the neighbours security decide to start a fight right near my window on his phone. The decibel levels of his voice ensures my inability to hear what was said. I request for a repeat -- and it’s just, see you in Dubai Marianne, we are all waiting to give you a taste of our Dubai hospitality. I am floored, I worked with one boss in India and ran away putting in my papers, in two years, and here was this man who had barely hired me, probably my sons age, being so gracious and appreciative of my work.
Working from home is not fun, but it does give me the scope of not living in Dubai to work on this site. My line thankfully ensures that I hold my job, as specialists on the environment with a doctorate, are few and far between. And two hours or less in a day makes it an enjoyable exercise.
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