As if things weren't manic enough this week, what with the countdown to opening to the public again at the weekend, we have undertaken the huge project of moving the estate office over the past couple of days. The portacabins have been a fixture for many years now, providing a base for my colleagues. I have my own office in the house itself, whereas the Property Manager (my boss), Estate Secretary, Learning Officer are based at the top of the estate. The plans have finally been approved and building is due to start on a permanent structure for them. The new office is to go on the site where the portacabins have stood for the past eight years. This means that the portacabins have had to be emptied, ready to be hoisted over the wall, where they will continue to be used while the new office is built. McColleague and I have been helping with the carrying of office furniture and supplies to temporary storage. This is very team spirited of us and nothing to do with the free lunch laid on for all office move workers over the past two days.
So, we carried out box after box of files and photos, phones, cables, keyboards and monitors. My Boss has the most cluttered office of all and, despite McColleague and I going on an emergency box buying exercise in town, we ran out of storage units. "Just put everything on the floor," he said. "It'll be fine".
We were doubtful, but obliged. I eyed the pot plants and mystery brick pile with grave misgivings. "I'm glad he got rid of the fish tank," I said. McColleague nodded.
Once the office was as empty as it was going to get, we stood back to let the men with machinery do their thing. This was their time to shine. Hard hats and reflective jackets abounded.
As it turned out, my misgivings about the items left in situ were unjustified. The big crane was impressively smooth in its movements and well controlled. When the portacabin was finally in place we scurried round to peer inside. "Wow, all your stuff is fine," we yelled over to my Boss. "Hasn't shifted at all. Come and look!"
"Hey, that's excellent," he beamed. "I even left a glass of water on the desk, to test how good these guys are."
"They're good," we agreed. "Is it lunch time now?"
Tomorrow will be trickier, as now all the items that were taken out, have to be put in, and access is only posible through a slippy, slidey sea of mud, all churned up by the heavy machinery. Best chance of hilarious comedy accident is going to be while shifting the photocopier, I reckon. Like the Somme, with stationery.