Back to the office

“I haven’t ironed anything for months, and so this morning I was up at a quarter past six ironing a dress”, one of my colleagues said this morning.

A group of us have received permission to come into the office on Wednesdays to do lots of the things which we simply can’t do working from home. There are some meetings which need to be done face to face. And then of course, there’s those things you can’t do electronically, such as pick up the mail.

For the first hour or so this morning we didn’t do much. We sat around the office and talked about our lives right now. Most of us hadn’t seen each other ‘in real life” for several months. So there was much talk about families, the break over summer, etc. And that’s where the discussion about ironing began.

I pointed out that I didn’t need to iron my shirt today, as I already had five freshly ironed shirts hanging in the wardrobe. And when I say “freshly ironed”, I mean, they were ironed in March last year, before we began working from home.

Before working from home, I would usually drop in some shirts to my local laundromat, and for about $12, they do a lovely job washing and ironing them for me. Though I have a washing machine at home, I don’t have the patience for ironing, and besides they do a much better job.

Even though we’ve been working together “virtually” for six months, I met another colleague “in real life” for the first time ever today. “I keep forgetting how tall/short people are”, one colleague mentioned, as we only ever see each other on screens.

A few of us also got some takeaway for lunch from a new dumplings/noodle place a friend had recommended on Wattle Street. We also popped in to our local Woolworths in Haymarket. For me, it was to buy some groceries, as my local Coles closed down a few weeks ago. For the others, they were more interested in buying some chocolates, which we consumed over afternoon tea.

The “social” aspect of working should not be under-estimated.

The tunnel through Central Station was moderately full, as I walked to work today. I also called in and grabbed a take-away coffee. I later learned my favourite coffee shop has been operating solely on Job-Keeper. Based on current customer levels, they’ll struggle to continue when Job-Keeper ends. They’ll likely close, adding a few more names to the unemployment statistics.

Closer to home, life continues fairly normally here in Surry Hills, though I was alarmed when a friend who works in social media in the emergency services sector sent me a message early on Sunday morning.

Message and Tweet from a friend.

Sadly, it seems there’s been a fire at my favourite local Japanese.

Ichibang on Crown Street, Surry Hills
Best wishes to Kim, Joy and the Ichibang staff

I feel really sorry for Kim, Joy and the staff, as they’re such lovely people. I will normally pop in there once every fortnight for lunch or dinner, and will often call in there to grab some takeaway for lunch. As well as being lovely people, they also have great food.

Meanwhile, the search for a new supermarket continues, after the closure of Coles at the Surry Hills Shopping Village the other week. A few local shops, include the Indian Supermarket on Crown Street, and the tobacconist (!!!) on Cleveland Street have started selling fresh milk, and a few other daily items. This helps, but it can be a little expensive, and hardly comprehensive to rely on shops like those.

On the weekend, I visited Woolworths Express at Darlinghurst, and experimented with going to Paddy’s Markets for my fruit and vegetables. The range and quality were quite good, though the strawberries were disappointing after a few days. That’s the reason I called in to Woolworths today.

My favourite lunch most days of the week. Tomatoes, cucumber and some kind of cheese.

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