The busy season at my work is slowly tapering off. Thank goodness, because I am tired! One of my team members was out most of the critical two weeks (last week of June, first week of July) and I had to step in and do some big chunks of her job. For part of her work assignment she needs to arrive before 7:00 am. In her case, that’s no problem – in fact, she prefers the early shift. For me, not so much.
I used to work early rather than late. I typically arrived around 7am and left around 3:30 or 4pm. I did that for many years. And, as an early riser, it wasn’t a big deal. There’s a lot to be said for the early shift, especially having time after work to actually get stuff done rather than just come home and eat dinner and go to bed.
But, when my mom was dying, I switched up my work schedule. I spent the mornings with her which allowed my dad to take a long nap and run errands. I was going to work around 12:30 or 1:00 pm and working until 8 or 9 in the evening. At least, some of the time I stayed that late. Plenty of days I was just too exhausted, physically, mentally and emotionally, to stay that late.
Something about that whole summer and fall changed my internal clock. Something that drove me to stay on schedule and on track just broke.
Since then, I arrive at work anywhere from 8:30 to 10:30 in the morning and stay, usually, until 6:00 or 7:00 in the evening. My coworkers are used to it and my bosses don’t care, so I just come in when I feel like it and leave when I’ve had enough.
So, the past couple of weeks have been a reminder of what the early shift feels like. Tiring! I’ve also noticed the differences in the commute. Both the bike commute and the bus commute are different at those early hours. The bus is crowded! I mean, sardine can crowded. 7:00 to 3:00 is a very typical hospital shift and there are a multitude of us here. And the bike commute, wow. So many rude and impatient riders at those early hours! Of course, it doesn’t help when the Tour de France is going on. We get all of these lunatics who think they will earn a yellow jersey or be King of the Mountain by racing down the streets and nearly knocking the rest of us aside. Ugh. And don’t get me started on their damned lycra biking outfits! Bunch of horses asses out there… so unnecessary.
But, the early morning is cool and lovely and I don’t give a fig if the racers all race by me. I’m still out pedaling along at my fairly sedate pace and arriving to work cool and calm and not all sweaty and agitated.
This morning, however, my errant coworker is back and I sure as hell did not get up at the crack of dawn and show up to work early! I rolled in around 8:30 and it felt pretty good. Will it be hard to stay later this afternoon? I don’t think so. I like the later hours because after 4pm it’s nice and quiet and I get a lot more done without all of the interruptions. It’s a trade off, but I think I’m getting the good end of the bargain.