KJ (owlmoose) wrote,

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Ladies who lunch

Today was my long-planned lunch with a former coworker. On my last day in the office, I was heading out to grab lunch and we were in the stairwell at the same time. I asked where she was going and she said she was off to meet some friends for a knitting lunch date. "Too bad I already have plans, we could have had lunch together for the first and last time," she said. When I pointed out that living in the neighborhood meant that we could have a lunch date any time, we made plans to get together at a future time, and that future time was today. And it was really great -- we talked more than I ever did when we were co-workers, and not just about work stuff. We learned about each other's past jobs, swapped stories about being the children of recovering alcoholic fathers who smoked, dished on politics... I really enjoyed it.

I've never been much for making close friends at work. I'm not sure why that is. I have no objection to being friends with co-workers. Before, I had the feeling it was because I was a secretary, which often puts a barrier between you and the people you work for. But that was hardly the case at my last job, where I had many peers and more common interests with them. Sure, I went out for drinks with folks from time to time, and had lunch with someone once in a blue moon, but it was never more than that. My standard explanation for this is that I already have a solid group of local friends, so I don't "need" to have friends in the office. But I do still end up feeling kind of left out when co-workers talk about the things they did together over the weekend or after work or whatever. I wouldn't say it's a serious lack in my life, but it's there. Wouldn't it be funny if I developed a friendship with C now that we don't work together any more?

I did learn one interesting tidbit about my former workplace. Before I was laid off, I was up for a project manager position in another department. But everyone moved too slowly, a key VP was on vacation at a bad time, and they closed the open requisition right before they announced my round of layoffs. Well, it turns out that most of that group, including the VP, was laid off on Monday. So even if I had gotten that job, it would only have been a temporary stay of execution. Could I have used the extra three months? I suppose -- that would have stretched my severance period closer to the wedding. But how much would it have sucked to just get started in a new position, get excited about it, and then have it snatched away from me? No, definitely better this way. And I can let go of the little tiny bit of bitterness that I had about not getting offered that job.
Tags: personal, work people

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