10.27.2010When it started
Nine years ago I made a mistake, but, back then, I was clearly convinced I was doing the right thing. I was fresh out of school and had just gotten a job doing admin at a paper factory. I wanted to be a journalist, just like everyone else in my year, but it was either small town reporting for a pittance, or making some money and getting out of there as quickly as possible. I chose the latter because I had a firm belief in my chances at romance increasing dramatically once I had some cash to move to the city.
I was trying to perfect my two-finger typing method when I got a call from Mrs Stevens, PA to the biggest boss of all. She asked to meet in her office straight away. This made me a little nervous because I had no idea what she wanted. Maybe it was customary for her to meet every new employee, or maybe I had done something wrong, but surely I couldn’t get sacked already? I knocked on her door while butterflies exploded in my tummy, only to get rid of them when it was way too late. Mrs Stevens turned out to be Nathalie Daniels, my old youth club leader whom I’d had the most colossal crush on when I was fifteen. And she wanted me to work alongside her that week, all week, from nine to five, as they say.
Of course, she already knew who I was. Who forgets a name like Lee Harriet Robinson − especially when you’ve associated it with lusty teen poetry for several months in your formative years? I changed my name to Lee Harlem Robinson when I turned eighteen, but I honestly don’t know exactly why. It must have been a subconscious sex thing, but I still have to see a shrink about that.
Nathalie was only a few years older than me − three years, five months and seventeen days to be exact − and she already was the PA of PAs while I had just started working at the bottom of the admin shelve. The scene was not working on my behalf. Especially because Mrs Stevens, as she was now called due to a heterosexual marriage to Mr Peter Stevens, pretended in a very non-pretending way to not recognise me. I was wise beyond my years in knowing that bad memories are memories too. I knew and she knew, but we both started pretending.
To be continued…
If you’d rather catch up with all the drama that came before in one short post, click here.