Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Nice Cold Clear Day - Mount Rainier stands out

I want to ride my Triumph, because I am excited at so much Sun and all this free time, the cold doesn't even affect me - I see others in leathers on their motorcycles and they are having more fun than I in my minivan on my way to visit a public library. Why not me?

I think I should have my sunglasses on, I think about the interview, I think about friends, I park and visit the library and set their alarm off twice as I go in and out and then about - checking the new books on their shelves; Westerns, Mysteries, and Sci-fi. I meet my friend and we talk and that makes the day worthy, offered to put a good word in for me - but enough remember me from before I will go with the interview alone. I am early, I am invited in and addressed as "William" which I correct to "Earl" - these ladies don't know me, and I have never met them. Maybe I have changed too much as I aged, one of the pages I worked with before didn't remember me when I said 'Hi' either, it has been almost ten years since I worked for that library.

I am introduced and we touch common grounds before the questioning begins, the rules established, the language appropriate. Information Services is hiring one Library Associate, first question is what do I do now that would be helpful in their library and that position. I recite all that I remember that I do - and it is a long list, when their last question outlines the duties I would have in their library I realize that I won't be doing as much as I do now, and being only one of many I will be under appreciated. Still I answer the questions honestly, relaxed and with a little humor. My wife's advice was to not talk too much - since they are trying to write it all down I do think and then respond appropriately. Thirty minutes later the interview is over, they told me what the maximum pay was (if I worked there a long, long time) per hour. I shook their hands, for some reason the woman with gloves on the entire time upset my harmony, and I didn't like shaking the gloved hand, it was cold in that large room but two of us didn't have gloves on.

I drove home, counting two more motorcyclists going in my direction and one coming against the traffic. I considered that I probably won't get called - over qualified and too independent - hard to supervise, but would remain on their list for a year and maybe more interviews as new holes appear in their staff. My inside informants have said the budget talk has been very quiet, the personnel problems haven't changed much. I decide that the motorcycle needs a run in the cold clear air... time to breath, time to roar. I get home and take off the tie and interview gear, put on sweats, extra layers, mask, turtleneck sweat shirt and boots. Get the good warm gauntlets down and the full face helmet. Open the door, roll the bike out, turn the fuel valve, open choke, turn key, press starter - such lovely improvements over the kick starter of my first motorcycle (I don't have to prove I am a man any longer?). Close garage doors, put on helmet, adjust gauntlets, get on motorcycle, turn off choke, roll throttle, release, disengage clutch, tap into first gear - roll down drive and onto the street and adventures.

Others are going home and I am going against the traffic, and I fly (both wheels on the ground) and I fly. Stop at the Harley-Davidson dealer to see what is there, and nothing calls to me, I am too particular about my ideal motorcycle and too content with the Triumph in silver and graphite, even with its wounds, honorably earned the hardway, battle scars and scares, things to talk to my son and friends about over a beer (okay, a coffee). Time to go home and I want to miss all the congestion of the commute - not easy, but I have more flexibility on the motorcycle and I use it - seventy-five in a sixty zone? How did I get that fast, must be an error in the guage, this is the commute and nothing is protecting me, slow down a shade and read the traffic and the road. Very round about route ridden, but I finally get past the herd of migrating motorvehicles of suburbia and scoot home to find my wife dressing for church. Day is gone and it was great.

No comments: