“Where are you?”, a colleague asked me the other day as we spoke on the phone. “I’m at the supermarket. I’ve run out of dishwashing liquid”, I told him, adding how much I love the convenience of living quite close to a shopping centre.
Ordinarily, I’d only be able to visit the supermarket on a weeknight or a weekend. Over the last few months of working from home, however, I’ve loved the convenience of being able to pop out of “work” for a few minutes, to a grab a coffee or maybe some lunch at a nearby take-away.
I’ve also loved the convenience of being able to make a nice lunch, to be able to put something on the stove mid-morning, and for it to be ready for a “proper lunch”, instead of something out of a plastic container.
I also have a pretty awesome bakery only two minutes walk from home, and there’s a couple of lovely nearby parks where I’ve been able to take a few minutes each day for a walk or a moment in the sun.
It’s been a wonderful contrast to my normal working life of going into the office each day. I’ve saved heaps of time on the commute, and I’ve saved money on not having some of the normal workday expenses.
I’ve also loved being able to work at my own pace without some of the normal “interruptions” of the workplace has been awesome. I’m pretty sure my productivity has increased significantly.
It’s also been wonderful to be able to “connect” with my neighbourhood on a daily basis. Most of my experiences of Surry Hills have tended to be on weeknights and on the weekends. On weeknights, there are the busy restaurants and bars, and on weekends, it’s cafe life, and visits to the supermarket. Surry Hills on a weekday is quite a different place.
The only downside has been “street noise”. In contrast to work where I’m in a closed airconditioned space for most of the time, I’ve spent most days working from home with the window onto the balcony open.
Although it’s been great to be able to have fresh air coming into my apartment all day, there’s also the issue of noise.
“Sorry about the noise, I’ll just close the door” has become a common phrase I’ve needed to use on phone calls and video conferences, as colleagues have noticed the sounds of the construction site next door. Oh, and my goodness: the annoying sounds of leaf blowers.
Three months working from home this week.