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Thursday, March 22, 2012

The Times, They Are A-Changin'

Seems a bit of sacrilege to cop from Dylan for a blog title, but as this seemingly magical, mystical year of change continues to unfold, the times for me, at least, also continue to change. Some of the change has been sad with the passing of family and friend alike. Other changes both hopeful and wholly unexpected continue to morph 2012 into this year of possibilities. The past couple of weeks have seen a whirlwind trip to West Virginia for a memorial quickly followed by the last shift at my longtime retail job, before I began my new job at The Elms Hotel and Spa.

My last day at the former job was a bit odd and in some ways anticlimactic after having worked there quite a few years. In retrospect, I think the no-frills last shift was probably for the best. I had left for another job once before in the past decade and I learned the hard way, especially in this economy, that you just never know when you might need to swallow your pride and go back when times are tough. The managers at my retail gig were always greatly accommodating. As for my fellow associates, I've written in a prior post about my strong feelings about them: from my D.C. days to my most recent fellow retail warriors: they will always constitute some of the finest folks I could ever work with and they are friends for life.

The weekend leading up to my new job included a weekend visit from Keith's parents so Ken could tune up the Model A. We took them on a hard hat tour of the hotel and hosted our first grill-out on the deck, complete with barbecued pork and homemade pasta salad. We reveled in the summer-like weekend that also included the first ice-cream run to Dari-B and a Bloody Mary Brunch at Granite City. We also enjoyed a Mexican dinner with the Posse to touch base with Jim as he's in from New Jersey and taking care of Carolyn. It was a whip-stitch of family and friends that served well to soothe my growing nerves over the rapidly-approaching first weekend of my new job.

As for that new gig, I am now the HR Coordinator for The Elms Hotel and Spa. I had been itching to return to this beloved hotel of mine ever since I left. I have also written about the Elms many times on this blog and my deep, abiding love for this 124-year-old retreat for the soul has long been palpable. I had indeed hoped to return and was even more thrilled when I was hired to be their human resources coordinator. In just a few short years of previously working for and being associated with The Elms, these are some of the experiences I've had...

...wrote the History Brochure, had my first-ever spa day (including pedicure-WOW), coordinated weddings and events, assisted on the set of an independent film (and scored my first film credit!), put on a ridiculously over-the-top performance as a poison victim during Murder Mystery Weekend, co-hosted monthly wine tastings, was the guinea pig for The Moroccan Detoxification Treatment in the Spa, cut the ribbon to release the kids at the annual Easter Egg Hunt, watched a jazz circus perform on the Fourth Of July, bartended poolside, and was the guide for several paranormal investigations...

..to name a few. Me, this one guy at The Elms could have already walked away with a lifetime of memories after a few short years, but no, I get to play in that sandbox once again, and now its a soon-to-be newly renovated glittering sandbox. Better yet, I get the distinct honor of taking care of the good folks who are taking care of our guests. After four days of the new gig, I am terrified, thrilled, excited, overwhelmed and blown away. Of course, as already mentioned, I am in HR now, so writing this very blog has become an ever-more delicate endeavor. For instance, when writing about the Elms, the posts will include the following disclaimer (imagine it spoken by a deeply serious baritone voice):

The opinions expressed in this blog do not represent the opinions or viewpoints of The Elms Hotel and Spa or Widewater Hotels.

That may sound awfully serious, but so far, I could not be more crazy excited about this job. The week also included a divine night out with some fabulous females and that will be detailed in the next post..

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