Apr. 25th, 2017

bobcatmoran: (feuilly)
Hi, wow, it's been forever and a day since I posted here.

But I've been getting the journaling itch, mostly because my life has become actually semi-interesting again.

I seem to have been traveling a completely inordinate amount for my new position, mostly for training, but I'll be going up to International Falls, MN ("Icebox of the Nation," which they actually trademarked in order to keep Fraser, CO from claiming the title) for actual on-the-job duties next week.

This week, I'm in Chicago to shadow an employee who actually knows what she's doing rather than the blindly half-trained flailing I've been doing. The reason I'm here now is because there's a big supervisor/admin meeting here, and thus I was able to carpool with my supervisor and the office manager so the office doesn't have to pay extra transport fees to get me here. The side effect is that I'm meeting a lot of people who are State Plant Health Directors (i.e. heads of one or more state's programs for this branch of the USDA) or above.

So…guess who got stuck at a table for the hotel's "evening mixer" alone with her boss's boss's boss's boss and the freaking head of the entire taxonomy section when a few people had to suddenly take off for some admin nonsense about the conference room?

It me.

And lemme tell ya, the behind-the-scenes work that happens when there's a looming government shutdown is wild. Like, our agency has a bunch of people on travel right now, either for meetings like this, or to fill in for necessary positions that have been left vacant due to attrition + hiring freeze/budget shortcomings. And when the government shuts down, they will be stranded, with their stipend to pay for food and lodging cut off completely. So what do you do with them? And at what point do you make the call, "Okay, you need to come back to your home port NOW" when oftentimes these things go right up to midnight on the deadline? Stuff like that.

May 2017

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