Living in Exile – Day One

Sunday night, I received a call from my co-worker.

“Um, yeah. We decided that you should probably work from home. We’re gonna need you to pick up your banishment kit tomorrow, m’kay?”

The conversation really didn’t go like that, but the real conversation doesn’t make for good writing.

I headed to the office on Monday morning. The traffic was lighter than usual. When I got the office, my co-worker handed me a flash drive and gave me verbal instructions on how to install the VPN. Then, he worked diligently on my desk phone. We have these snazzy phones that can be plugged into Internet anywhere. After doing the necessary tweaks, he handed me the phone and said, “Take thy equipment and leave this place!”

As I was escorted to the door (no one really escorted me to the door), I was shoved out into exile as he yelled, “THIS. IS. SPARTA!!!”

That isn’t exactly what happened, but it is what I thought in my head as the door shut behind me. The conversation was more like, “Stay healthy. Stay safe. We care about your health.”

If you don’t know, I am immune compromised. I’ve suffered kidney/liver issues as well as breathing issues. I’m diabetic and overweight and nearing 40, so yeah. COVID-19 is probably something I don’t want to suffer with or gamble with, so I am truly grateful that they care. I’m just dramatic.

I set everything up Monday night, without issue. After all, I am pretty tech savvy. Did a test run on all systems and went to sleep without a care in the world.

Day One of Exile

Normally, I have to commute 40 minutes to work. It was actually nice to sleep an extra 40 minutes. I made myself breakfast. Yes. I actually made breakfast. Two poached eggs and some toast. I fixed me a cup of coffee and began my commute up the stairs. I stopped midway, inhaled the sweet scent of my lit Yankee Candle, imagined Nick Cage in Con Air with his flowing locks and breath of freedom, and thought, “Today is going to be a good day.”

I get to the door of my office, and hit traffic. There was a two-dog pile up at my office door. Muffin, my chiweenie, and Nibbler, our dachshund/pug, decided that they both wanted to be the first in the office. Nibbler, having this long, awkward body, took out Muffin. After surveying the damage, I lectured the dogs to chill out, and they went, one at a time, through the door to their pet beds.

Just when I thought the coast was clear, I was side-swiped on both sides by Lexi, our Maine Coon mix, and Snickerdoodle, our Calico mix. It was like a scene from West Side Story as they hissed at each other and walked in a circle. Ah, yes. The dance of the cats to determine who would reign supreme and get the top tier of the cat condo. Lexi won, because Doodle is an embarrassment to all felines. I have no idea how she lives with herself.

I was finally able to enter the office. This is nice. Noshing on my breakfast, sipping on my coffee, blaring Barb on my computer. If I am being honest, the best part of the day was being able to stream Barb without headphones. I let his foul-mouth rantings fill the air of my office like elevator music. It was delightful to allow the constant barrage of F-bombs permeate the room. Never change, Barb. Never change. (If you want to experience streamer greatness, visit BarbarousKing on Twitch. He streams twice a day and is a popular Mario community member.)

With the scene set, I put in a solid day of work. No interruptions. No social interactions. I felt 100% more productive here at home than I did at work.

I have decided that, while in exile, I will choose an “employee of the day”. This award goes to the most committed to the cause. Today, employee of the day is:

Lexi. She literally did not move from this spot all day. I applaud her commitment to the cause. I gave her a treat.

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