An oppor-toon-ity (Toronto Life Ep. 282)

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I was in a bit of a funk this week. A colleague got a great opportunity at work and that kind of news makes me evaluate myself and I will usually come up short by my own evaluation. What have I done recently? A short trip to nearby Quebec City where I was sucky at a challenging run.

Then, on Friday, in my open concept office, I heard my boss say, “Okay, I’ll go ask her now,”* and hang up her phone. I felt a moment of anxiety since there was a 33-50% chance that “her” meant me. But it sounded more like a work request had come in rather than a complaint to be passed on. I went straight to work and soon felt my boss’ presence in my peripheral vision, trying to get my attention over my desk’s “walls”.

“I just got a call from _. How do you feel about going to Saskatchewan?”
“Yeah, I could.”
“On Monday.” (Mind you, it’s Friday.)
“I can do that.”

And then Friday was a whirlwind of preparation amidst my usual work and communicating with the travel department who booked the departing and return segments separately. At one point, an itinerary was generated with us going into Vancouver first then backtracking to Saskatchewan. On one hand, it was not a problem since I would try to see NPY and you get more frequent flyer miles the farther you travel. On the other hand, it was a woefully inefficient itinerary that had to be scrapped. To get to and from the airport I lined up the Chinese car service Big Uncle recommended to us (stored in as a phone contact under “Leung, Friendly”) and thrill a little how much more formal and deferential 駱小姐 sounds to me than “Ms. Lok.” And I added the travel details to my TripIt account, pleased that for once I am using the “Business” radio button to describe the trip while 99% of the time I select “Leisure.”

My company has an office in Saskatchewan and based on my past work, a director identified me as the candidate to send there to assist them at a time of transition. I am really flattered but now anxious about the limited amount of time to share what I know, to get everything done! I will be there for four days.

So, by Sunday evening, I will have hopped out of Ontario for the second weekend in a row and I will be able to say that there is just one Canadian province I have not yet visited and that is Newfoundland.

NPY is anxious for me–so sweet of him–because of the flying and I’ll be in an (entirely safe) city that neither he nor I have been to. I’m busy as heck with heavier-than-normal courseload but I don’t want to turn down this opportunity. I wouldn’t say it too pointedly around NPY but it’s one of those things where my company has offices in Toronto and Vancouver and elsewhere in Canada but I would not have this (and other) opportunities I’ve had thus far if I were working in the Vancouver office. Toronto is the biggest Canadian office that all other offices can reach out to and I’m thrilled that I can be a part of it.


* I can only paraphrase. Nothing here is direct quotes.

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