Another scratch off for the “to-do” list--lunch in Jericho, home of the Oxford yuppie, with my number 1 blog fan. Chip and I scheduled a “business lunch” at Branca, a nouvelle Italian bistro on Walton Street. It’s a puzzle to me at this point how I continue blogging once this blog is no longer a travel/culture diary. Am I doomed to a life in nursing or can I try something new? My “hating taking care of sick people” thing is what a nurse recruiter might consider a bad fit for most health care settings. Nurse Ratched is a role model. Maybe I need to keep my finger on the pause button for a bit longer.
What better way to contemplate a fantasy alternative career than with a fantasy business lunch? Chip will confirm that I am completely out of touch with reality as regards the business world. Since my parents also worked in health care, my ideas about the business world are based largely in all I’ve carefully studied on television dramas like Dallas and Dynasty as well as the daytime soap opera, The Young and the Restless. As a business professor, Chip sees business as a complicated sociological matrix of industry, unions, technology and a dynamically changing workforce (I just made that up with words I’ve heard him use on the phone). For me, business is an office with a desk, computer and a phone and power lunches, business dinners, early morning planning sessions with coffee and pastries, and cocktail parties after work with “clients”. A parade of social gatherings with food. You are familiar with Darren Stevens and Mr. Tate on Bewitched? Then you have my vision.
I used to love meetings when I was a staff nurse. If they need a staff nurse at a meeting instead of at the bedside, it’s usually driven at an administrative level to introduce an “innovative new strategy of care” which implies cost saving measures for the hospital sure to lengthen hours, decrease staffing or cap a pay scale. They unlock your shock collar and let you leave the patient care area to go to a boardroom with a white erase board and and comfy chairs in an area of the hospital that doesn’t smell like poop, but more like flowers and leather. There I could sit for an hour without having to respond to the unrelenting universal needs of the suffering--sustenance, pain relief, oxygen, emotional support and elimination. Timed well, the inspired and experienced nurse could plan her day around coinciding unpleasant tasks, like weighing her obese patient with the bed scale or getting her post-surgical patient on the bedpan, with her meeting time.
“Right, I just put Mrs. Johnson on the bedpan, Sally. Can you check on her in about ten minutes? And grab a weight on Room 406 if you would? Thanks, you’re a peach.” I’m sure I never did that.
My power lunch started with an Island Breeze Punch or some such, a lovely drink of Campari, limoncello, cassis and lemon topped with Prosecco. We had a great luxurious two plus hour lunch as business people do, and left around 4pm. The restaurant was peaceful between the lunch and dinner crowds. We cycled home at dusk to children wondering why their unrelenting demands for tea had not yet been satisfied.
The Christmas decorations are up. Little house in Oxford is ready for Santa.