Today has been the longest day. Ever.
I expected some vacation eve excitement akin to a child on Christmas Eve. I’ve been looking forward to this trip since before it was even booked. What I didn’t necessarily count on was waking up at 5:30 – wide awake. At the very start of the day, I was already an hour and a half deeper into the day than I anticipated.
I’m not sure if it’s this way with everyone, but my to-do list at work seemed to have tripled in the last few days. All of the little things I’ve been trying to get off my plate in anticipation of leaving apparently procreated at the fastest possible rate. No matter what I was working on, every time I checked something off my list, there were three more items in its place.
Then, then, you add phone calls. I can go weeks without having to speak with anyone on the phone at work. Normally when folks call the office, they’re looking to speak with one of my bosses. Occasionally I’ll get a call I have to take, but it’s normally someone with a question, or seeking clarification – something I can easily provide an answer to and move on with my work. Today’s calls all seemed to dump their own pile of work onto my plate. From having to rerun an internet search for information in triplicate to throwing together unexpected correspondence, it seemed the calls just kept adding to my already overwhelming pile.
Then came the dictation. My dictation is generally busy. I work for three individuals. The first is a workhorse. I’ll see, on average, a dozen or so pieces of dictation a day. Some are short. Some are long. I can usually bang them out quickly. The second is longwinded. If I hear him with his Dictaphone, I know I’m in for the long haul once I get into the dictation module. The third rarely drops full-blown, straight-typing dictation. His dictation is generally instruction or requests for me to do projects or the like. Although I occasionally get overwhelmed, I can find a good rhythm with the workflow. Today? Today, I felt like there was no end. As soon as I finished a short piece of dictation, there was an analysis. I found myself with one file that was over 20 minutes in length. (For you math whizzes out there, for each minute of dictation, it takes approximately twice that amount of time for me to transcribe and format it.) And, that was just one item! Throughout the day, I found myself with a smattering of dictation projects that were, on average, 10 minutes in length. I swear, I must have typed eight or nine documents throughout the day – on top of the phone calls and paper that inevitably covered my desk.
By the end of the workday, I was chronologically 11.5 hours into my day. As I write this (to upload later, I’ve put in 17 hours. And, I’m looking at almost four more hours on this flight, plus an hour or so to get back to where I’m staying – for a grand total of approximately 22 hours for the day. But, that’s just the physical timelapse. Let’s not even get into the mental math involved – between the early wake-up, the running at work, and the general wear associated with a coast-to-coast flight. I swear I’ve lived two days in just today. (And, as indicated, I’m not even there yet!)
Overall, it’s been a rough day. But, I can assure you that spending some quality time with the parental units and extended family over the next week will be well worth it.