Pat’s Trabajo

Construction Inspector Pat

It’s been about 2 months since I started my new position and I figured it’s about time I pull some weight and write something. (Note: The government frowns upon employees posting online so I won’t get into too many details.)

All and all things have been really good with my new position. My coworkers are all entertaining and more importantly, seem pretty competent. My boss is demanding but takes care of everyone on his team. Additionally, he has taken to mentoring me in a learning a variety of Spanish curse words. I’ll leave those for a separate post.

The work itself is interesting and will undoubtedly be challenging. The project our team is currently undertaking involves pulling down an eleven story tower down which sits directly on top of an active hospital; needless to say demolishing a building “quietly” is not an easy task. As a side note, I also need to figure out a way to get the tile mosaic off the side of the building (about 80 feet up) and put down in front of the main entrance without destroying it; feel free to contribute ideas.

It’s definitely a unique experience being the only gringo in the office (and throughout most of the hospital). So far I’ve said my share of idiotic things in Spanish but everyone seems to enjoy it and are quick to correct me. It also works both ways – I’ve become the non-official email spelling and grammar checker.

The guys also are excited to show me around the island and they’ve been a good resource for figuring out places to go explore. Unfortunately, in the last 2 weeks we haven’t had too much time to get out since we’ve been working on setting up our new apartment; another post on that coming soon too.

So things are pretty good and we’re starting to settle in to our new home. As a bonus, Jenn’s work has been happy with her teleworking… so good stuff all around. I’ll leave everyone with a picture of some of my work buddies that hang outside of my office.

I haven’t started naming them… yet.

La primera semana

A pristine panorama!

Week one of our Puerto Rico residency might be best classified as a modest success.* Pat spent all 5 work days in an employee orientation performed entirely in Spanish, of which he feels, in more optimistic moments, he understood 33% percent. Combined with his 100% understanding of governmental bureaucracy, it’s a solid start.

* This is one step above mild success and two steps ahead of what NASA once termed a “successful failure.”

Teleworking is going fine for me. More than fine, exceptional even, if you’re a big fan of cats sitting on your notebook, laptop, mouse, and keyboard. If so, I have a Ruffian you can borrow.

We’ve been lucky enough to hang on the beach for about an hour a couple days after work, but this weekend we were finally able to really leverage our location. On Saturday we rolled into the nearby Isla Verde district to scope out the real estate, enjoy the beach, and allow Pat to try a surf break on for size.

Then on Sunday, after knocking out some grocery shopping (avocado status: still ginormous), we got in some serious time at the beach right by our temporary apartment. In addition to sunning ourselves* we tried out the beachside bar, Numero Uno Beach House, whose menu includes such items as seared ahi tuna and watermelon margaritas with fresh watermelon juice. So you could say we like it there.

*Before you ask, the answer is yes. SPF 50, actually.

The recurrent tragedy that is Sunday night now weighs heavily upon us, but we persevere. Tune in later this week for more details about adventures!