It’s raining now – it’s been raining all day. In my new office, my entire exterior wall is a window, which floods the room with light on most days – but today, it was dim as twilight all day long. Below my window is one of the busier streets in the city – I can see tiny people and cars tootling along the street, more than a dozen floors below me. I look out over the river every day, where blue water vessels churn the mighty Mississip. The small slice of river I can see peeking through the skyscrapers seems to be a place where giant container ships make a turn – it is easy for me to be distracted by their maneuvers in the seemingly too-tight space, the angles and rudder manipulation so precise, the water choppy and brown around the propellers.
I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned this, but most days I fill a glass pitcher with ice, water, and sliced lemons, and drink the whole thing, sometimes two. I like having a glass to hold in my hand as I numbly page my way through documents on the screen. I like seeing the lemons and ice, floating together, seeds settling on the bottom. I have also taken to eating a salad for breakfast every day. This was borne out of necessity, as I am basically the only one in the family who eats salad with any regularity, and at Costco you can get romaine heads in a package of 5. I have to eat ridiculous amounts of romaine to get through it without it going bad, and so I’ve taken to having a giant salad with tomatoes, carrots, hardboiled eggs, and a dollop of chicken salad on top. It’s actually a great breakfast – lots of protein, some roughage, not so heavy that you feel sleepy. Sometimes on weekends we’ll get donuts and I will enjoy the heck out of a Boston creme with my coffee, but I never feel well afterwards. Breakfast salads go down easy. They may become a staple.
I’m just feeling like describing my workday, I suppose, without describing my work of course, not in any detail. I’ve been at this firm – my third – for a month now, but it’s all the same. Wander in, look at a screen, make some phone calls, ten hours later wander out. Occasionally shove forkfuls of food in your mouth while you scroll through document after document. One funny thing about my firm is that our phones are all video phones, so if you call anyone in the firm, you can see each other on a screen – kind of like Skype or facetime, but with no buffering delays. I’m used to it now but at first I’d always forget, and my conversation-companion would spend the whole call staring at my ear, or watching me as I stood up and stretched or fiddled with my hair or picked my teeth, completely forgetting I could be seen.
I like the work well enough, and my coworkers. I like the abundance of money. I’ll probably never make partner at this firm, but it’s somewhat soothing to know that they are rolling in money. I’ll never be laid off (and there are several associates with many years more than me under their belt, so there isn’t a hard cutoff for make-partner-or-leave). Also, our office makes the least salary in the firm, but has a pretty high billable rate, and so I feel pretty protected. There are numerous non-partnership tracks, actually, and I foresee landing on one of those. I am already well liked. Partners are asking for me to work with them. This is all fine, and what I expected. A sixth year lawyer is a pretty valuable contributor to a firm’s bottom line.
The dog hates the rain. I will go and cuddle with him. August begins. School starts soon.