A Short Story About Perspective: A Day Off

It was Friday early morning and I had just finished a zoom meeting at about 9:00 am when I logged off my computer and all the lights went out. I thought I had blown a fuse, but after checking and understanding it had to be something else, I went outside.  My next-door neighbor was also outside and confirmed she had also lost all power. Soon enough it was clear the entire block was without power. 

In the alleyway, there were multiple utility trucks and several construction hat-wearing men standing around in reflective colored vests. I went up to one of the men and kindly asked what was going on. He explained that two of the utility polls had to be replaced and they were there to do that.

It was clear that something had happened, and they had been called to take care of it. They were professional and kind and each waiting on the next group to configure something or other before they fully began doing the work. 

At that moment, one of my neighbors from another building could be heard walking toward the alleyway where we were all standing. She was complaining loudly that she had been on a call, in the middle of a very important meeting, that she had to work, that this was unacceptable… and she came right up to the group of men I was talking to and before she could say another word, I intervened and said, “Hey, good morning. See those two leaning polls over there. Scary, huh? I’m so glad these guys are here to fix it. Things could be so much worse if that fell or exploded or something, huh? We’re so lucky.”

I could physically see her take a deep breath.  She was calming herself down. She was attempting to put things into perspective. I continued my conversation with the gentlemen and went over a few things so that all my neighbors who had gathered outside could hear the answers.

“It might take all day, could be all weekend. It just depends. We won’t know till we get up there.”

“We need it to be done by today, Friday. They don’t like paying overtime.”

“We’re so sorry, we know this is an inconvenience, but it has to be done.”

“Everyone is always mad at us, but we’re here to do a job. It’s not our fault. We’re trying to fix things.”

I thanked them. Wished them much safety as they climbed up and touched what I assumed are highly charged electrical things I would know nothing about… and I walked on over to the group of neighbors that had assembled. Still, one, complaining about how she’d have to find another place to work. And how difficult this was going to be for her. And why couldn’t they have given her some notice?  It was clear she was looking for allyship in her frustration and anger.  Instead, someone else chimed in, “You know, it could have been worse. The poll could have fallen, and those two buildings could have caught fire and we could be having a very different conversation with firemen and ambulances instead. Enjoy your day off, from everything.”

Exactly! 

Perspective. A fascinating thing…

Happy day,

Carmen

4 thoughts on “A Short Story About Perspective: A Day Off

  1. It’s so true! No matter how frustrating things get, it can always be worse. May we all remember that the world does not revolve around us! Let us relish the good moments, and have patience for the not-so-good.
    Great post, friend. 🕊

    Liked by 1 person

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