I'd like to wish a fond farewell to Steve, who moves on to a different job this week. In some ways both he and his wife have played a role in the creation and continuation of this blog. I first encountered Steve on the first day of the project when i was trying to run the obstacle course to the newly relocated dumpsters with a big sack of trash in one hand and the leash of a very frisky puppy in the other. I was not happy. In fact, i confess that i was muttering some pretty choice profanities under my breath. He drove up to the entrance of the job site, smiled out the window, and wished me a good morning. I proceeded to tear him a new one. I then went home and reflected on what a jerk i'd been, cussing out a guy who was just doing his job and had actually gone out of his way to say hello when he could have more easily driven right by me, scattering gravel and exhaust fumes in my general direction. I thought about what my life was going to be like if i was mad at the world for the next year and a half while the project was underway. That's when i decided to focus on the positive side--that i had a unique perspective on something that would probably be pretty cool to watch--and to share the experience through this blog. I also apologized profusely to Steve that same day. It was a lesson in the power of kindness; if Steve hadn't taken a moment to smile and say hello, i would probably have just continued being angry and annoyed every day until the substation was finished. Instead, i made a friend.
A few days into the life of this blog, i received a comment from a woman whom i later learned was Steve's wife. She told me how much she was enjoying seeing the pictures of her husband and his coworkers on the job. First of all, it was kind of a thrill to realize that someone was reading the blog; secondly, her words were so encouraging that i really started to think of this as something other than an exercise in self-indulgence.
I also have Steve to thank for presenting me with a lovely pink hard hat (which i had none too subtly hinted that i thought i deserved for all my hard work on this blog) and a genuine construction worker's safety vest. If i ever decide to switch careers and do construction (or join some strange new version of the Village People), i'll be ready! I confess that i do wear the hard hat sometimes when i'm sitting at my desk writing; but i think that's more to keep my ideas from flying away than to prevent anything from hitting me in the head.
So, goodbye and godspeed, Steve, it's been a pleasure getting to know you over the past several months. I hope that your new job is a great one and that you'll continue to visit this blog from time to time.