10 January 2015

My new job

Well, I started my new job about three weeks ago and it's exhausting in a way I'm not used to. At the bakery I was lifting very heavy weights all day and didn't have to use my brain at all. I was able to go on autopilot most of the time and let my mind wander away. In order to keep my brain working I would do all the math by hand on paper or in my head.

Now I'm using my brain all day and my body almost not at all. I sit at a computer and request RMA (return to manufacturer with authorization) numbers for broken computer parts. Once I have the number I package all the relevant parts into a box and prepare it to be shipped out. Or I open boxes of items that have been repaired or replaced and enter them into the system for the store to sell. In order to feel like I'm using my body more I will stand at my desk instead of sit. It's pretty cool that I'm short enough that I can stand and work easily, or pop myself up into my chair to sit if I want. 

The job itself is fairly easy but it's a lot of information to remember or sift through. Things like: if the part was purchased within 30 days it will be sent back to the supplier, over 30 days goes to the manufacturer; knowing which part goes to which manufacturer; figuring out each manufacturer's websites or email forms; and tracking down the item on the store's computer system when it doesn't immediately appear when I scan the UPC or serial number. All of this will become second nature at some point but for now I have to navigate through web page after web page, invoice after invoice, pay attention to incoming emails, and listen when someone asks my partner something about whether or not to bother trying to get an RMA number (some companies just ignore the requests or make it extremely difficult to get the part repaired or replaced).

And yes, I have a partner. For eight out of nine years at the bakery I worked alone and now I have a full time partner. I'm not super pleased about that but honestly it's nice to have someone guide me a bit when I have questions. S does the same job as me but at a different location of the store, he only had help for a week and then had to learn all by himself.

So now that I'm using my brain more I find I'm not interested in any deep conversations or even attempting to write my book (did I mention I've been working on a novel?). TV is fantastic for letting my mind rest after work. I don't have to put in any effort at all. And I especially don't want to surf the Internet after work any more. I just don't want to look at anything that resembles a web page in the evening. My brain is too full.

Another thing I've noticed that's different is that I don't shrink as much during the day. You know how you are taller when you first wake up than you are at the end of the day? Well you are :) At the bakery I would sit so tall in my car on the way to work and have to adjust the rear view mirror dramatically after work as I was so much shorter. Now I don't have to adjust the mirror at all. If I shrink it's not noticeable any more. And the arthritis in my back, knees, and hands doesn't act up at all now, so that's a plus.

Overall the new job is a keeper except for the hours. I used to get off work at 2:30 pm and now I'm off at 5:45 pm so I feel like I'm missing my day :( Even with the dayhome I ran before the bakery I would take the kids outside and feel like I was still getting to see the day pass by. Not any more. Now I get home and everybody is home before me so I don't have my wind-down time. I will definitely need to figure that out. And for the first time in...ever, I think...I have to work the week between Christmas and New Year's. Every other job I would take that week off and now because I work in a retail store I am required to work on Boxing Day. There are no exceptions, no vacation time allowed for December, absolutely no one is given the day off. Non sales people like me greet people at the door, check receipts as people leave, or are runners to get stock for the sales people.

Maybe I'll stay at this job long enough to see my partner leave so I can have the department all to myself. I really do work better alone.

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