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Friday, May 1, 2009

The Mystery of the Kensington Plaza Elevator

I didn't sleep very well last night. It only took me until four in the morning to realize that I was tossing and turning not due to nerves, but because my cell phone kept on beeping to let me know it was slowly dying. Delightful. Everyone wants to get up two hours before their alarm goes off to plug in their phone so it will shut up.

I was already scared for my first day of my internship with Where, but I was made even more so by the total lack of sleep. Janine was much more exuberant when she got up to go for a run as I was heading out the door. Somehow though, I managed, to get dressed, look professional, and eat something before I had to leave. I even made it down there with a a little early.

Now here's where the fun begins. Where's office is in a business complex on the side of a store in Kensington. I had a hard time finding it for my interview, so I gave myself plenty of time in case I forgot. I found the office fine. Quite pleased with myself, I got in the elevator and pushed the button for the second floor.

It took me a minute before I realized it wasn't moving. I pressed the button again. Nothing happened. I was still on the lobby floor. Panicked, I wondered if I was trapped in the elevator. I pushed the button to open the door. They opened. I stepped out, and looked around for the staircase. There wasn't one. I realized that was silly. All buildings had to have a staircase. I went outside and looked for a staircase there. Nothing.

This was brilliant, my first day of work, I'm trying to look competent and reliable, and I can't even figure out how to get inside.

I tried the elevator for the first floor, and it worked, but the second remained stubborn. I figured out what I thought was wrong. This business complex has one office per floor, so the elevator opens right into Where's office. It would make sense then, that the office be able to prevent people from going in the elevator to their floor when they are closed. Clearly the office wasn't opened yet.

I called the only number I had for the place, the editor's office number from her business card. I called. She didn't answer. Oh well, I guess if the editor wasn't in yet it wouldn't be the end of the world if I wasn't there. But so much for being early.

I was still in the elevator wondering what to do next when the receptionist came and found me. She explained what I'd already figured out and told me to come around back. Then, once inside, she gave me the number of everyone in the office should it happen again.

Later I discovered that my editor, artistic director (who is usually the one to unlock the elevator), and several other people were not there that day. So that, plus starting on Friday, plus my beginning made for a most memorable first day.