A brief half-post today, as I have less than 5 hours to sleep before I need to be up for work tomorrow morning.
Every now and then, I get taken off of regular taking-calls duty to help out our newest employees, by spending their first 10 or so days on the floor answering questions, helping them handle difficult customers, etc. It’s pretty great, and since so many of the groups do an opening shift, from 6:00am to 2:30pm or 7:00am-3:30pm, I get a nice break from my usual schedule, which usually means I get home around 11pm each night.
There are positives to both morning and night shifts. Working a night shift, for example, has made it much easier to get the million blood test, authorisations, endocrinologist appointments, meetings for my name change, etc that I’ve had to deal with in the last year. I just wake up early, do what I need to do, then head to work. Easy.
However, working a closing shift does also mean it’s too easy to end up very isolated, and that’s a hole I’ve been slowly digging myself deeper and deeper into. Up until today, I felt like I would be crushed under the strain of loneliness and sadness at my lack of social interaction with other people.
So I decided to do something about it. Seeing as I would only have two weeks to take advantage of a different schedule, I went and looked for board game groups in Bogotá, something I’ve been interested in for a while.
I found one meeting today afternoon, so after work I went home, freshened up a bit, then left for the restaurant where they meet.
It was awesome.
We played Sushi Go and a couple other games I’d never heard of. Some of them were super simple, and some were so complicated they felt overwhelming at first. However, after a few minutes they all become incredibly fun. So fun, in fact, that I spent nearly 80 minutes playing a single game and barely noticed time passing by. I got there at 5 and left at 9, deeply disappointed I couldn’t stay there any later.
It wasn’t just the board games, whose complexity, strategy, and entertainment value I appreciate, it was also the chance to chat with other people, share my sense of humour, get to know them. I’ve missed that. A lot.
I met the guy in charge of the group, a guy about my age. He was very nice. I met a middle aged man who told us about some stuff in his life, and who was very welcoming. I met some Dutch guy, who was only in Bogotá for a couple of weeks in the middle of some travelling. I met another dude from Medellin, who’s a huge member of the board game scene there, and had apparently heard lots about the group I’d just joined.
There were a few other people, and everyone was so damn nice.
I’m very likely going to be switched to a different client at work. It will mean doing a whole new training, starting at square one without my year’s worth of knowledge, and it will possibly mean a (temporarily) drastically reduced salary.
However, it will also mean I will work on a more ‘normal’ schedule, instead of the night shift I’ve gotten used to. I was a little bit hesitant about the switch due to the lower salary, but if it gives me the chance to keep going to these board game meetings and maybe join groups and societies for other things I’m interested in, to meet new people, and add something that’s been crucially lacking in my life this last year… maybe it’ll be worth it.
Life really isn’t all about the money, and quality of life and fun can definitely make up for losing a big chunk of your income.