Saturday, June 21, 2008

Who I Am: Chapter 1

Who I Am

Jonathan Paul Diaz


Chapter 1: Newbie

“Peter it says here you are 30 years old and still single, why is that?” said Mrs. Jenkins who was a middle aged woman and head of the Human Resources Department. Peter just blankly stared at her and sighed. “I’d rather not talk about that” he softly replied. Mary Jenkins raised her eyebrows and browsed through Peter’s resume.

“Your academic records are amazing but sad to say we have no vacancy to match your qualifications” Mary said. “Then can you please match me to the nearest qualification, I would be fine with that” Peter pleaded. “I think that is not possible Mister Davis, the only available opening is for programmers. With your qualification you deserve a higher position but as of the moment we cannot offer you any” Mrs. Jenkins explained.

Peter pouted and fixed his tie and stood up. “Thank you for your time then, please excuse me” he said and started to head for the door. “Wait!” Mary said and Peter turned around and looked at her. “There will be an opening at the end of the year, you can come back and I will give that position to you” she added. Peter smiled and said “Well I cannot wait that long, but thank you for the offer.”

“You told me you have tried all companies here in this city?” Mary asked and Peter nodded. “So where are you going now?” she asked him. Peter took a deep breath and looked away and shrugged his shoulders. “You know I am a Psychologist too, you seem to have a problem. Do you want to share that with me, maybe I can help you” Mary offered.

“Thank you, but I am fine. I really have to go” Peter politely replied. “Okay, if you really want the job it’s yours. It is against my policy but I promise to give you the higher position as soon as it is available. But for the salary grade I can only raise it a little so you won’t expect to be paid what you really deserve to be paid” she said. Peter smiled and nodded “That would be no problem madam; I just need the job thank you very much.”

Mrs. Jenkins pressed a button on her desk panel and a few seconds later her secretary entered her office. “Anna please do tell the technical department we have a new programmer and tell them to fix him a cubicle. While waiting for the cubicle to be finished please show mister Flynn around the office building and get his papers fixed” Mary said. “Yes Madam, Sir please follow me” Anna said and Peter followed her out of the office.

“By the way Peter, you will be assigned to the programming department; you will find there probably the best people in this business do you think you will be able to meet our standards?” Mary added. Peter smiled at her and loosened his tie, “I don’t know yet but I hope they can cope up with me” Peter replied and closed the door.
Anna led the way and Peter followed her as she toured him around the building.

“You can ask me questions you know” Anna turned and told Peter. He just smiled at her and looked around. They reach the fourth floor and two guards are blocking the main entrance. “It’s okay guys, he is new here, I am just going to show him around. He will be working here so be nice to him” Anna said and the guards move away from the door and let them in.

“Madam, why do they guard this floor so much?” Peter asked. Anna looked at him and laughed, “Call me Anna, well you see this is where the bread and butter of this company come from and you will be a part of them soon” she replied. They walk forward and a great hall of cubicles comes to view. “Come on I will show you to your workstation, maybe you could get to meet some of your workmates. But I have to tell you most employees in this section have nasty attitudes, they don’t talk much often. Maybe its because there is too much data in their heads” she said and laughed. Peter looked around and saw the people very much concentrated on their computers, some would stare at him a bit and go back to their business.

“Here we are, this is your workstation” Anna said as she pulled out the chair and Peter sat on it. “Wow, its been a long time since I worked, I used to have my own office so I guess I have to adjust now since there are lots of people around” he whispered. “Why did you stop working in the first place?” Anna asked him. Peter just smiled at her and he turned on his computer.

A young woman with long hair stood beside Anna and said “Hey Anna, is this your new boyfriend?” and the secretary suddenly blushed. “Oh no, this is Peter, he is new here, he will be working with you guys starting tomorrow” Anna answered. “I can start now, its okay I don’t have anything planned” Peter interjected. “Wow, look at this newbie, excited to work but do you think you can go with our system?” said the young lady. “Melanie, that’s too harsh of you to say. Peter here is more than qualified to be here…” Anna said but Peter held her hand and smiled at her.

“I guess I will just start tomorrow then” Peter said softly. “You have a lot of preparation to do newbie, Anna you have to orient him well on our system. We don’t want slow pokes here you know” Melanie said and Anna sighed pulled Peter’s arm and they both exited the room. “Is that woman always like that?” Peter asked Anna. “Well I guess so, but we can’t blame her since she is the best on this area. Anyway, come on let me show you the employees’ lounge, I am sure you will enjoy that place” she said and they proceeded towards the adjacent room.

The employees’ lounge was an enormous room that was just like a bar. There were two pool tables, three LCD televisions sets, sofas, reclining chairs, a dozen of snack tables, and a huge buffet table with assorted food and snacks. “Peter, everything here is for free, there is even wifi access, and oh yes please remind me to issue you your personal laptop later” Anna told him. Peter was silent and walked towards the large window, there was a sofa in front and he immediately sat down. Anna sat beside him and she looked at Peter who was smiling as he was looking at the view outside. The sun was shining on the horizon and tall buildings were all around, the sky was so blue that day and only a few clouds formed. “I like this spot, I don’t know why but I really like it here” Peter uttered and Anna sat back and enjoyed the view. “Don’t worry Peter, I know you will do just fine here” she whispered and he looked at her and simply smiled.