"Keep a Journal: How else are you going to get a good look at who you were?"

Thursday, December 06, 2012

There are times when a major inconvenience can be a blessing in disguise.

Our most recent move, for instance.

Grant and Kathy got their move out of the old place done by the 27th of October.  All their worldly goods had been moved out of the old place and crammed into the new.  This caused some logistical problems.  I had a few larger items: the TV and cable drum it sits on, my couch and my waterbed.  I gave Grant until the 31 to clear me a passage through the garage in the new house so I could get at my door and get these items moved in.  He did so.  I arranged for help on the night of the 31st and the 1st to get the items moved and give myself time to clean the carpets, counters and the kitchen appliances.

I got up at the usual time for work on the morning of the 31st, and made the usual trip to the bathroom for my morning communion with the water-closet...

...to find an inch or three of standing water in the bathroom, and more coming from under the kitchen counter.

My bedroom, with the still-full queen-sized waterbed bladder (sitting on a flimsy particle-board sub-frame), is between the bathroom and the kitchen.  I realised I wasn't going in to work...as I had to get that waterbed drained before the frame got soaked and collapsed under the weight of the bladder.

That took two hours, by which time the water did soak the sub-frame and rendered it unusable.

S'Okay.  I had no room for a queen waterbed in the new place anyway.  My lovely waterbed, with its now-damaged frame, went to the landfill.  I'm sleeping on a brand new loft bed with a brand new foam mattress.

We suspect the flooding is a result of the property owners refusing to pay to have the foundation drainage of the house connected to the new storm drain line the city installed a few months ago; after which the city also filled in the drainage ditch on the west side of the property.  That house didn't have terrific drainage to begin with, and the flooding in the backyard, the garage, and eventually the house, (which is still on-going as of this writing) seemed inevitable.  It made some hurry for Grant and Kathy to get their stored stuff out of the garage before it all got waterlogged.  Ironically, they had just got finished cleaning the carpets downstairs the night before the flooding started.  I, of course, didn't bother cleaning the carpets in my place as they were going to have to be replaced anyways.  The landlords still made me clean the oven, fridge, and counter tops (splish splash) and would not release the Hastings' damage deposit until I had done so.  Some people, I tell ya!

With the closure of the Annex I had hoped to be back to work as usual in the Central Stock department at our main building.  Not a chance.

Central stock has gone from 2 shifts (down from three) and 16 staff; to 1 shift and 8 staff...or less.  Wade, Barry, Heather, Mike, Sanjee, Gurmej, Marv, and Amresh.  All of whom are higher on the seniority list than I.  For all practical purposes, this means there will be no further vacancies in Central Stock until someone retires...or dies.  All other W2 staff formerly associated with the department have been "loaned out" to other departments.

This is how I found myself in Major Home Fashions ( the department formerly known as Big Ticket).  My day now consists primarily of wrestling mattresses and humping refrigerators...

That's not a pithy witticism...that's what I actually do all day.

Or rather, that's what I did all day: up until November 6th, when I tried to haul a walkie battery weighing several hundred pounds with a crate hook - sideways - and succeeded...in straining my lower back.

We've been here before, haven't we?

Lucky me; because of the previous experience with Lower Back Injury, I know now that one does NOT wait a few days while the discomfort and pain get worse and worse before doing something about it.  I went and reported the injury immediately, and got Dave to put some ice on it at the First Aid station.  They sent me home in a cab, which I had drop me off at the clinic on Scott Rd and 84th, after which, I got Grant to take me home.  My car had to stay where it was for a the next 5 days.  Armed with doctor's orders to rest, and a prescription for Naproxen and Benzaprine; I did my best to stay "off" my back for a few days.

Of course...our HR department at work started jonesing right away about their "Safe and Early Return to Work Plan".  Huzzah.

After a week or two, WorkSafe BC got involved (the department formerly known as the Workers Compensation Board).  I now have a case worker / nurse whose first bit of advice was to immediately find myself a physiotherapist.  I did so, in the person of Coral Bates of the Scott Road Physio clinic.  She's a real sweetie!  Easy on the eyes too...

Alas, my Physio Nirvana was not to last long, because HBC ran out of modified duties for me to perform at work.  (I was doing six hour shifts hanging garments in Put To Store for the Top Shop project.)  I was put on layoff for a couple of days, at which point my WorkSafe case worker informed me that as I was on layoff, I had to enroll in Occupational Rehabilitation Therapy right away...or they couldn't keep paying me.

Both my Doctor and Physiotherapist felt OR Therapy might be a little premature...but not to worry; by hook or crook, I've managed to delay the actual onset of the WCB Health Club for Broken People for a few days and the financial downside hasn't been bad at all.  So: next week (after a follow up with my MD to get my blood pressure checked - oops!, I forgot that last time!) I begin daily sessions of physical training and exercise designed to build me up and equip me with the knowledge I need to maintain that physical level so I DON'T get another back injury in the future.

Know what else would prevent me getting hurt at HBC?  Finding another job that doesn't require wrestling mattresses and humping refrigerators!

I'm going to discuss scheduling with my OR Therapy clinic tomorrow.  I want to take a day out next week for a Career Development Seminar at LDS Employment Services.

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