Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Diversity? Who, Me?

Dear John,
 
We had banking excitement in a much tamer form today. The phone lines at the LaGrange office were down for several hours. Since they're where proof and the main computers live, it made things interesting. We had two loan officers come down to use our offices and computers.
 
I had my evaluation today - all of us are evaluated every six months. All categories are above expectations so it seems they're going to keep me. I left the evaluation feeling valued, which felt wonderful.
 
One thing they appreciate about me is the diversity I bring to the office. I had to ponder that for a bit. I think of myself in many ways, but "diverse" was never on the list. I suppose it's because I'm the only living Southerner anybody has ever seen. When I was interviewed for the job, Charley asked me how I was with people who were different, meaning the Amish portion of the town. Of course, I don't think of my Amish neighbors as being different at all. I told him that, over twenty years of nursing, I'd taken care of prisoners shackled to the side rails with armed guards in the room, two gypsy kings, and one medical malpractice attorney. He decided I could handle Topeka. Now it seems that I'm the one supplying the diversity. Who knew? I'm happy to oblige.
 
You're from Ohio, and you adjusted so effortlessly to me that I forget that I seem different to people up here. But of course I do. You accepted me completely while you tried to learn and understand my southernness. The only thing that ever bothered you even a little was when you first saw CSA markers on graves - your first reaction was that it was treasonous. I told you to deal with it, as I remember, and I suppose you did. But I really am different, especially to people who have lived in this town all their lives. They seem to love and accept me in spite of that, or perhaps because of it. I feel like a welcomed part of the community, even if I don't talk funny like everybody else does.
 
Let me sum up: The job is going well. The temperature and humidity are down a bit, and I'm getting the air conditioning worked on Thursday morning. The dog and I slept through any thunder that may have happened last night. Hunter is still in my lap every time I sit down and the other cats are at my side. It seems that the animals missed me. The vacation was wonderful and it's nice to be home.
 
And now I need to go to sleep. The sun is down and it's getting dark, and Jethro is already sound asleep beside me. I love you so much. I still hate going to bed without you - that's the hardest part. Your little family misses you.
 
Adore you,
Joan.

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