Tuesday, 16 July 2013

A stressful day that got better and somehow more stressful

If you don't want to read the entirety of this post, then this image will sum it up nicely.

If you don't get it, I'm afraid you're just going to have to read.

Alright, so yesterday and Friday several of my colleagues mentioned that the annual intern report was coming up, and had I prepared anything.

My reaction: whut?

"Oh wow," they said, "you didn't know? Every year the intern has to prepare an hour-long report and present it to the senior staff."

Oh hey, that sounds amazing fun, like running across coals or jumping out of an aeroplane - the kind of thing I'd love to do with more than two days warning. So the entirety, and I do mean the entirety, of my day has been spent in a frantic, sweaty panic. I read and reread my report speech. I argued everything three different ways, trying to find any criticisms that could be levelled at me and working out how to counter them. I put together a presentation. I sweated through two shirts, and that's a pain because I do not have a lot of shirts right now.

So I turned up at the appointed hour and place and knocked on the door. I heard the voice of the motherfucking Dean of the School on the other side. My knees, which were already doing an excellent approximation of castanets, switched up a gear and knocked out a tempo that might easily be labelled prestissimo, if one were writing a symphony for the body.

I digress. I was nervous. That's the point.

I entered.


My coworkers had thrown me a surprise party. I had sweated through two shirts and it turns out there is no intern report. I was set up. They got me, and they got me good. To apologise they'd bought cake, fruit, and gifts.

The gifts were two-fold. First some physical things: a guidebook to Chicago, in French; a gorgeous dark blue tie; and a flash drive and a keyring, both inscribed with my place of work.

They also filled a card and two sides of A4 with kind words. Amazing. I can read them. Even more amazing-er.

I still had to make a speech, mind you. I'm also still shaking from that. 

So that was my day. A stressful day that improved but got more stressful at the same time, and a very pleasing way to say goodbye to all the friends I've made on the staff.