Week One is over

Here it is, Friday night, and the end of my first week acting as Harbour Master. Only five more to go! I can’t wait to be finished with it. Of course, since I can’t go boating and even working with my clay makes my ribs ache, I guess it is better to be doing something than nothing.

I’m expected to be in the office between nine and five, mostly for the telephone. I did know that, having had occasion to ring the Harbour in the past. Not that I have had very many callers, only a couple of people inquiring as to whether we might want to sell the land. Answering them was not difficult.

Jik rang yesterday, wanting to know how I was getting on. He has been Harbour Master and he knows me so he ought to understand just how uncongenial the job is.

The first thing I do when I get to the office is put on the heater. The administration building is bitterly cold and even with the door shut the office takes a while to warm up. I don’t think I’ve taken my coat off before ten o’clock any morning this week. Then I go along to the front door to see whether the post has arrived. It usually comes before I get here┬ábut Wednesday we had snow and that held things up a bit.

Dealing with the mail takes most of the morning since everything is new and I need to think about what needs to be done. I write cheques, Jik and Gilt arranged for me to be a signatory to the bank account, and enter expenditure in the account book. It all seems to be going out, the money, I can’t see where any comes in, but perhaps it doesn’t matter. Gilt can deal with that when he gets back. I’m really just keeping things ticking over.

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A new job

Today I allowed Jik to persuade me to agree to the request Gilt made of me to substitute for him and do the job of Harbour Master for six weeks while he goes north to help his mother care for his sick father. I don’t feel at all qualified for the job but since I’m not allowed to go boating and Gilt has a real need, it would be churlish to refuse.

Actually I think he and Jik cooked up the idea between them when the doctors told me that my ribs and my collar bone would need six weeks recovery time. I don’t want to believe it, but I do still ache when I laugh or cough and I can’t wear my back pack and I can see that working a windlass might not be wise.

This morning Gilt gave me a brief overview of the work I would need to do. Me, in an office! I can’t help feeling inadequate as well as resentful that I have been put in this position. I’ve decided not to move into the Harbour Master’s flat. Day Bringer is my home. It’s where I belong. At least Jik supported me in that and has spent time today organising bags of coal and emptying the toilet so I won’t have any heavy lifting to do for a few weeks at least.

Fylan would like me to stay in the house a bit longer so she can check on me, but Blin would drive me crazy he is so obsessed with me and I think she understands that. She has promised to feed me though, at least for the first weeks while I’m finding my feet in the job.

Tomorrow morning I’ll be in the office on my own, nine o’clock until five. I can’t help wondering what I have let myself in for.