Tuesday, July 25, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER... and whatever it brings (Part 160o)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160o)

The race car was still on the back of the hauler when I got there. Cliffy’s father was driving the wrecker as it was dragged off the truck bed. There were probably a dozen onlookers as it happened. I made a joke that we should’ve charged admission. Once on the ground it didn’t take long to start the repairs. There was some frame damage but Cliffy’s father told/showed the guys what to do to fix it and by the time it started to get dark we were well on our way. We rallied ourselves by saying that bad things come in threes and that was the third piece of bad luck we’d experienced. Trying to find a bright spot Buster piped up that since we didn’t even make one lap on the tires we wouldn’t have to buy new ones. Actually, the out of pocket costs to repair the damage was less than $50. The part I liked was that enough was done that we decided to skip coming on Wednesday night.

Tuesday was another ‘enlightening’ day as far as Betsy was concerned. She wore a flowered blouse with a pale pink, fairly tight fitting skirt. Personally, I loved to see pastels on a woman. In observing her with Lorie it was obvious that the ‘hit it off’. With the bank’s new Xerox machine Lorie had run off copies of what I’d deemed “the Bible”. It was a summary of the basic banking department rules we had to follow and Lorie spent the morning going over them with the idea that once she and the other new employees were at the branch for the last of their training that she had something to work with. It was luck that had brought Betsy to the office two days early but I could see it paying off “in spades”.

I continued avoiding Jerry and reveled in the fact that he was uncomfortable knowing that I was, indeed, his ‘boss’. My plan was to meet with Bret,Lorie, Jerry and Susan after the doors were locked to the public. I’d given Bret and Lorie the job of organizing just who was training who and what the trainers would be responsible in that role. I’d excluded Jerry from all of it because I was convinced he’d interject something that either wasn’t relevant or just plain wrong. So, when 3pm came and we gathered up in the corner by my desk I was ready to drop the “hammer” on Jerry.

Emboldened by the talk Hobie had with Jerry where he was told to clear all decision making with me (or Hobie) I started out by telling them all that Jerry was nothing more than an observer during the week of training for his staff at the main office.  I specifically told Lorie that if Jerry got involved, even slightly, she was to come to me. Then I addressed Betsy and told her that once the training shifted to the branch itself she, as head teller, had complete and total control of the training and, like I’d just told Lorie, if Jerry got the least bit involved she was to contact me. Jerry made a couple of attempts to protest and did get out that he was the manager but I pretty much shot him down saying that he was the “front man” when it came to assisting customers and that Betsy was in charge of the teller line. I made note of the looks on both Bret and Lorie’s faces. I’d never done anything like that before and I could see they were shocked. But I took pleasure in seeing Jerry being shot down. I knew I was taking a calculated risk of going too far especially with not knowing just who Jerry’s ‘benefactor’ was among the Trustees. but I was determined to take it as far as I could in establishing my position over him especially in front of the other three. It was too early to know just how good Betsy was or could be but I was willing to take a chance on her. An unspoken part of my plan was to connect Rita with Betsy and have the two of them with experience ‘run the show’. I had a week to put them together and I was counting on it to work. By the time we finished up it was well past 5pm. I honestly think Jerry was more upset about that (he normally left around 4:30pm or so) than the fact that I’d stripped a lot of his authority from him.

On a more personal level, I got home to find Elle in a tennis dress. That was always a pleasant sight. Before I could ask she said that Aurelia had called and told Elle she’d arranged to have a lesson and wanted to know if Elle was interested. Back at the beginning of the school year one of the new teachers hired had taught tennis where she’d previously lived. However, in trying to get settled in a new location she’d deferred doing anything along those lines but with school all but out for the Summer was lining prospects up. Elle, of course, jumped at the chance. There had only been a half day of school for the kids and Elle had taken them to her mother’s house to do one of their favorite things… make cookies. Once there, her mother asked if they could stay for dinner so they could see Elle’s father. That was a ’no brainer’ as Elle wanted to have a surprise for me when I got home. It was! But it came with a price… She wanted me to go hit some balls with her.

She knew I’d resist so she was prepared. She lifted the front of the dress and it appeared that her panties (plural) were wet. It was a bold move on her part, being willing to go out in public being wet, but she was ready. Being supper time she knew there was little chance of anybody being at the courts. She’d made up a salad for supper so when we returned it would be ready to eat. In essence, she’d removed what would’ve been my main reason for not going and offered me a rare treat if I did go. I was hooked. I made one stab at getting a feel of her panties but she deftly avoided me and gave me a sly smile for the effort and told me to hurry as I headed up the stairs.

I had to root around a bit to find my tennis clothes and shoes. We drove down the driveway just as the 6pm siren blew at the firehouse. At the courts we found a couple of kids picking up their things and waited for a few minutes before getting out of the car. At the court itself I stood and watched Elle as she bent over and pulled the can of balls out of her bag. It was a sight to behold. She was wearing two pair of her nylon satin fancy panties, complete with lace around the legs… and I could clearly see that they had been wet. I took two steps and patted her butt and found they were still damp. I elected not to ask about how and where wanting to preserve the moment.

The tennis, if that’s what I was playing, was pretty weak. My memory tells me that we stayed for little more than half an hour. With no one around she finally relented and let me get a good feel enhancing it with a pretty good squirt. My member was at full attention when she pulled away from me telling me I’d have to wait for any more. I was more than willing. Back at home I was ready to continue what we’d started but she insisted that we wait until after we’d eaten saying that she had very little for lunch. I was left to ‘cool my heels’ as she dished the salad out. I have no idea why I thought of a picture at that moment but I did. As soon as I mentioned it I heard the words “Make it fast”. The camera was in the hall closet right behind where we were standing. I went to get it and even though it took less than 30 seconds she was no longer in the kitchen when I returned. In a few steps I found her in the den. She was already posed and waiting… a definite good sign for later.

To be continued...

Monday, July 24, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER... and whatever it brings (Part 160n)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160n)

Seeing Betsy waiting at the back door in a bright yellow dress certainly started my workday in the right direction. She seemed a bit reserved as compared to when I’d last seen her. Hobie hadn’t arrived yet and I pretty much knew Jerry wouldn’t get there much before 9:15am, or after, so I took her to my desk. I explained that our new telephone system was now operational and I had to make sure it was working plus we still had to wait for Jerry and the Vice President for our meeting. When I returned I wanted to find out the reason she was so quiet. It didn’t take long to find out what was on her mind. She couldn’t understand why she had to make a special trip just to meet Hobie when she was scheduled to be at the office on Wednesday to start her training. I’ll admit I hadn’t given it any thought when Hobie told me to arrange the meeting so I couldn’t give her an answer. Then she asked if I’d found out why Jerry’s wife had been present during her interview with him. I told her I didn’t have an answer but suggested that she raise the question during our meeting. She didn’t take too kindly the idea but I encouraged her to at least give it some thought.

I’d given Hobie the application with her experience listed back on Friday so he’d be knowledgeable when asking her questions but I still truly couldn’t understand why he wanted the meeting. When he arrived I still didn’t know. The conversation was purely casual until Jerry arrived. He was at his Casper Milquetoast best, wringing his hands as soon as he walked into Hobie’s area. He acknowledged Betsy but wouldn’t look at her as Hobie started talking. His words were directed at Jerry and he told him that even though he (Jerry) hadn’t selected her (Betsy), she was to be his head teller and there would be no discussion about it. Then he asked Jerry if he understood. That I had to hide a smile goes without saying (writing). Then I got an even bigger surprise when he told Jerry that another person he’d interviewed but had not selected would be part of his “team” and mentioned Rita’s name. In mentioning her he came as close to chastising Jerry as he could without reaming him out. He told him that Betsy and Rita, with their experience, would be the keystone to the success of the branch. Jerry just sat there, wringing his hands and looking down at his lap and the floor. I had to look down as well to keep my facial expression from being seen by Hobie. Then Hobie turned to Betsy and asked if she had any questions.

At first she didn’t respond and when it appeared she wouldn’t speak she turned to Jerry and asked the question I wanted her to ask… “Why did your wife sit in on my interview?” My head immediately turned towards Hobie. I’d learned that he was a master at hiding his feelings and I wanted to see his reaction to that. I should’ve looked at Jerry. I think the term “tongue tied” would be appropriate here. He made a few abortive attempts before Hobie spoke up and repeated the question. Again, Jerry stumbled and bumbled. His answer, after a time, was that he’d brought her along so that after the interviews were over they could do the final inspection on the house they were buying. When Jerry was telling us that my eyes were on Hobie. His facial expression didn’t change but he did make a note on a pad on his desk and that was all. I, and I'm sure Betsy, wanted to know she couldn't have aited outside the room. It was awkward for all of us and Hobie finally put an end to the meeting telling Betsy he was glad she was “part of the family”. Looking at her face, I wasn’t so sure she was.

I don’t think Jerry said more than “hello” and nice to meet you to Betsy the whole time we were together. When the three of us stood up Jerry walked out of the area without saying anything to her. I led her back to my desk and, remembering her question about why she had to come out that day, I asked her to take a seat. I headed back to Hobie’s desk and caught him between phone calls. I broached the idea of having her start her training right then and there. The cost would be that she would be on the payroll two days early. After I explained the situation Hobie OK’ed it. When I told her it changed her attitude immediately. I then introduced her to Lorie and hoped that all the “drama” was over.

As for the new phone system, the only one who was struggling was Mary Carol, the switchboard operator. I was certainly relieved to see Norman, the salesman for the system, walking across the lobby. He was there to see how we were doing and his timing couldn’t have been better. As far as I was concerned the only problem was the old telephone equipment that was still in place. It belonged to the telephone company and we had to wait for them to come and pick it up. The flexibility of the new equipment was appreciated by all those I spoke to. After talking with Lena,the president’s secretary, and Trish I felt that between the new phones and the service bureau processing our banking transactions the bank was well on the way to being considered “progressive” and I was proud of my part in getting it there.

Returning to my desk I passed by Jerry and found him to be sort of pouting and unwilling to look at me or to even acknowledge my presence. That was OK by me. However, still in the back of my mind was the matter of his wife being present during the interviewing process and the lack of a 'real' answer. I’d noted that Hobie had made a note on it during the earlier meeting and hoped that he’d ask me to meet with him about it sometime later. I desperately wanted to let him know that Jerry had done the same with Rita, the experienced teller that Jerry had passed over and that I’d hired. I still harbored the faint hope that with enough “dirt” on Jerry that he’d be let go and a ‘real’ manager could be hired. I waited all day to get a call from Hobie but it never came.

At the end of the day I checked with Betsy and she appeared to be doing really well. She seemed to be the relaxed person I remembered her to be when I  first interviewed her. Lorie added that having Betsy there to work with her one on one for a couple of days was proving to be a big help. Once the other tellers arrived for their training it would be more difficult. Watching Betsy gather her things in preparation for leaving was the first time I could get a ‘relaxed’ look at her. She was a nice looking woman with a nice shape. Wearing that yellow dress I could finally asses her ‘attributes’. I watched her pick up her handbag off the floor and got a small VPL. The dress material appeared to be linen and although a little on the heavy side I was still able to see the indent of a leg elastic of her panties. I just hoped it was a forerunner of something better. All in all, walking out the door that night I had a much better feeling than I’d had that morning.

To be continued…

Friday, July 21, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER ... and whatever it brings (Part 160m)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160m)

The reason for my laughter wasn’t for what you might think. It was because Elle had broken one of her own rules. When we first moved into the house we’d never had a button lock door and it had taken some time to become accustomed to it. We’d each locked ourselves out because we hadn’t released the button when going outside so Elle devised “Elle’s Rule”. It was fairly simple. The first person to go out the door in the morning was to unlock the button. Then, the last person to leave the property was to reset it, locking the door. On this day, Elle, preoccupied, reset it when she wasn’t really leaving the property and had been ‘bitten’ by her own rule. The spare key was out in the metal shed I’d put up in the far back part of the property. With Elle’s very limited window time to get to a toilet there had been no way for her to make it so she just let it go. I’d not seen the remnants of it because she’d washed the patio off and the sun had dried it all by the time I arrived. Having her in a bit of a defensive mood helped take the pressure off me for not having called and I was relishing it.

She did have one bit of disturbing news for me… Rex, the sailing club property manager had called to remind me that the next weekend was the first weekend to get the clubhouse opened up and ready for the upcoming season. I can’t say I’d forgotten about it but I’d been deferring thinking about it in detail. It was also the ‘kick in the pants’ to get both of our Sunfish sailboats out, cleaned up and ready to go as well. Even though the days were getting longer as far as light was concerned, they were certainly getting shorter when it came to fitting all the things I was involved were concerned.

Cliffy and the crew picked me up just after 3pm. We were in good spirits on the trip to the track with the only negative thought coming from Cliffy saying that the only thing left to break was the transmission. The rest of us ignored him recognizing that with the bad luck of the previous weeks we’d be entitled to a better starting position in our qualifying heat. It was but we found ourselves starting right behind C J. We all knew he was faster but Cliffy said his plan for qualifying was to stay right on C J’s bumper. Cliffy and C J talked about it before the race and they agreed that qualifying was the most important thing in this race and not who won.

C J was on the outside ‘pole’ (the first row of cars is considered to have the ‘pole’, or prime starting positions) with Cliffy right behind him on the outside of the second row. We were all really excited to be starting up front. When the green flag dropped all the cars went screaming into the first turn and then there was this big cloud of smoke and the sound of crunching metal. I could see our car stuffed into the outside retaining wall as the smoke lifted. Looking at the carnage there were at least six or seven cars all stuffed together. There was no doubt that we were done for the night.

Long story short… When C J lifted his foot off the accelerator the motor, literally, blew up spewing oil and broken engine parts all over the track. Cliffy was caught up in it and couldn’t steer the car and centrifugal force carried him into the wall. The primary damage was to the right front suspension. The wheel (and all the parts attached to it) were ripped right off the car. It took the track workers about a half hour to clean the mess (cars and oil off the track) up. Because we didn’t have a right front wheel the wrecker had to put the car on the hauler backwards. It was a major process! Once loaded, we inspected the car for other damage and found it to be mostly ‘cosmetic’.

C J and his crew came over to see how bad it had been for us and that’s when we found out just what had happened. When C J ‘lifted’ to go into the turn, the crankshaft broke and then “all hell broke loose” inside the motor, spewing not only oil all over the track but also prices of it as well. I remember C J saying that he “would now be a Chevy man” and glad of it. I kind of wondered why he’d say that because he’d been a multiple track champion at the local track running Ford power. On the trip home it was confirmed that we had all the necessary parts to fix the car so we weren’t faced with additional costs. It was just the disappointment of not being able to race that had us discouraged. It was now three weeks in a row.

I was home way earlier than if we’d qualified for the feature race. There was a note on the kitchen counter waiting for me. Bret had called to let me know the phones were all working at the bank. To be truthful, I hadn’t thought about it since I’d left around noon time. However, it was one less thing to worry about for Monday morning. The one thing that was on my mind as I tried to get to sleep was the upcoming meeting between Hobie, Jerry, Betsy (the woman I’d hired as a head teller for the branch) and me. It was at Hobie’s request and I wasn’t sure the purpose of it. In my mind it would be a bit awkward because it would be Hobie’s first time meeting Betsy and Jerry would be there as well. It was not an easy sleep.

Sunday was a day devoted to family and to getting the house and property ready for Summer. I'd been late in getting the storm windows off and the screens up on the first floor so that was a priority. With my involvement with the race car I’d managed to avoid being a part of this year's school Board election. Pat (the PTA lady) decided to make a personal visit to try and get me involved and that pretty much ruined my afternoon. Earlier, I’d been asked to run for the Board and turned it down. The guy who she finally ended up with was not a strong candidate and with only a little over a week to go until the annual meeting and the vote. The big issue for this meeting was school overcrowding. The main problem with the guy’s candidacy was that he didn’t have any children old enough to attend school. That was exacerbated by the fact he was new to the community so for him to promote the need for a new building was hard for the ‘locals’ to handle. The ’talk’ around town was it was a dead issue. Pat was there to try and get me to commit to running for the Board the following year. I couldn’t believe it. The only thing that kept me from telling her off was that I believed in what she was trying to accomplish… but I was really pissed.

To be continued…

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER... and whatever it brings (Part 160l)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160l)

I was at the back door of the bank a little before 7:30am. I was a bit surprised that it only took fifteen minutes to get there. But, on a Saturday morning, well before any stores were open, it made sense. The Northern Telecom crew was there, ready and waiting. When I went over their plans on how they would attack the installation I realized having Lorie to ‘baby sit’ them wouldn’t work. They would have to have access to their truck and, with Lorie not an officer, wasn’t allowed to have possession of a key. That meant I was stuck with the job and I was really mad at myself for not thinking the situation through. Lorie showed up right after 8am. It was the first time I’d ever seen her not dressed for work. An attractive young woman, she always dressed ‘professionally’ but now, in casual clothes, she looked totally different. She had her hair pulled back exposing her ears and I thought she looked cute with it that way. She was wearing white shorts… not short shorts and not Bermudas… but something in between. On seeing her I just knew there was the possibility for a VPL or optimisticaly, maybe a peek up the legs. However, there was no need for her to stay so my chances looked dim. I apologized when I told her about my making a planning error and in having her to come in. I remember her taking the news fairly well and then saying that there were some things she could work on in preparation for the upcoming training that she would be conducting. At that point I focused on what the  workers were doing up at the old switchboard and left her to work on her project.

It was about mid morning when I went back down to the first floor. I didn’t see her at first so went looking for her. I found her sitting on one of the “Kik” stools in front of an open file drawer with piles of papers on the floor. Walking up behind her she didn’t hear or see me and I was glad she didn’t. There was a gap between her blouse and the waist of her shorts. I could see flesh and also a bit of pale blue showing. Success! A DP (down pants). It wasn’t much but, for her, it was a lot. When she finally realized I was there she got up. But, in so doing she realized she’d pushed the “Kik” stool over one batch of papers and quickly bent over and reached for them. Instant VPL! Another ‘win’ for me. In seeing both it was a reminder that I really should be traveling to work on the road that went past her house as the clothes line was right close to the road. I remember thinking that it was just another example of having too many things on my mind.

I thought that was my ‘excitement’ for the morning. I was on my way to let her out when I saw Trish at the back door. Letting her in she explained that she had some shopping to do downtown and thought she’d stop in to see how Lorie was doing, never expecting to see me. Like with Lorie, I never got to see her in casual clothes and it was refreshing to see her that way although she wasn’t wearing anything special. The three of us stood there in the vestibule, chatting about nothing in particular, when Trish suddenly got serious. She was a very private person and seldom volunteered her views on anything. When she asked if we (both) hadn’t found Jerry to be (I don’t remember her exact word) “strange” I was shocked. In post 160j I mentioned how I’d wanted to discuss/divulge the fact that Jerry had his wife sit in on the interviews for tellers for the branch but hadn’t mentioned it to anyone. I was just about to do just that when Trish went on to say that Jerry got anywhere from three to six calls a day from his wife. I remember the look on Lorie’s face and mine probably had the same expression. But with that tidbit out in the open I couldn’t help my self and told them of the interview situation. For the next ten to fifteen minutes it was a compendium of out of the ordinary incidents that were bandied about. It was Trish who looked at her watch and said she had to get going and left with Lorie shortly thereafter. I stood there in total amazement that it seemed everybody but the trustees could see Jerry was a loser.

By the time the noon siren went off the Telecom workers had most of the wires connected to the new console. Bret arrived a few minutes later and I was soon on my way home. I figured I had about two hours to get all my Saturday chores done and I’d have to hustle to be ready for when Cliffy would drive by to pick me up on the way to the track. Elle wasn’t there when I arrived but I hoped she’d made something for me for lunch but couldn’t find anything. Before changing my clothes I stopped to use the bathroom and saw some clothes in the sink. I saw purple and recognized that it was a pair of Elle’s shorts and that they were wet. I picked them up and found a pair of ‘dribble panties’ wound up inside them. On top of wondering where Elle was I wanted to know what had happened to cause Elle to have what appeared to be an ‘accident’.

I was in the process of making a peanut butter and honey sandwich when I heard the kids on the patio. As soon as she walked in she wanted to know where I’d been. I tried to explain that all the phones were down and the reasons that I’d had to stay and I was somewhat surprised that she wasn’t all that upset. We chatted while I ate and she made lunch for the girls. One of her comments referenced the wet clothes in the bathroom sink. When she did she had a bit of a smile on her face. Before I could ask she explained that she’d been locked out. I had to laugh at that and asked how that was possible.

She and the girls were eating breakfast when Barbara, from next door, knocked and asked if the girls could come over to say good bye to the German twins as they were about to leave for Pennsylvania. Elle said she agreed but wanted Kaye to wait because she wasn’t dressed. She took her upstairs, dressed her and then let her go while she herself finished dressing. Knowing she was just going next door she decided to unlock the button on the door… only it was already set in the unlocked position. She was in a rush and figured she’d only be gone a few minutes so didn’t use the toilet. Mistake! When she returned home she found the door locked and had no key. Result… puddle.

To be continued…

Sunday, July 16, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER... and whatever it brings (Part 160k)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160k)

It turned out to be a fun time even though it meant I was late getting to the shop to work on the car. I got caught up on the progress (or lack thereof) on the new house they were having built. Bill said he’d been assured they would be in the house by the 10th of the month. As principal of the school, he commanded some respect from the community and it had come to his (and Phyllis’) aid in cutting through some bureaucratic red tape. However, with them having to be out of the rented house by July 1, they still had some juggling to do with family members. He, himself, was going to be staying with a school board member while Phyllis and the three younger children would be going back to Pennsylvania to stay with her relatives and the twins. Phyllis commented that it “would be cozy”. Mo, who would also be starting college, was enrolled in a Summer program at Temple University and would be living on campus. That left Barbara.

Being as busy and involved as I’d been recently, I’d kind of lost track of her. Even though still a high school student she’d been working more and more hours at the downtown store owned by an elderly German couple. Once cheerleading was over she was able to devote more time to working and the owners had come to rely on her more and more. So, she was the ‘orphan’ when it came time for the transition from the rental house to their own house.

Even though it’s now almost 50 years since that time, I’ve never been able to figure out if Elle and I weren’t being manipulated into offering to have her stay with us. Elle didn’t think so but I saw too many indications that the whole party thing was to induce us to take her in. Don’t get me wrong… I really liked Barbara and I immediately recognized there could be ‘benefits’ for me. Besides that we were to get paid for having her stay. But, to me. there were other choices that could’ve been pursued. Bottom line… it was a ‘done deal’ by the time Elle left to go back home. (I’d departed earlier). I didn’t find out about it until the next morning but that gets me ahead of the story.

As I mentioned, I was late getting to the shop. The other guys were just about to wheel the rear end under the car. I’m sure it was ‘payback’ but I ended up being one of the guys to have to get under the car and connect all the trailing arms, shock absorbers and springs. I was on a creeper which is a four wheeled platform that can be easily moved about with a person lying on it while under a car. Buster, who was usually in Cliffy’s ‘dog house’, was my partner. Alan was the guy who made all the adjustment calls and he stayed on the outside with a tape measure giving us instructions on which bolt to turn and how much to turn it. Let me say this… it’s pretty boring work.

Being a Friday night and with the races the next day, it brought out some ’spectators’ to see what we were doing. One of them was Davo (the tall basketball player from the now defunct town basketball team that I’d been on) along with his girlfriend, Leigh. I think I’ve described her in a prior post (or two) but she was as close to a ‘hippie” as we had in our circle of friends. An unbelievable personality, she defied customary mores when it came to dress and, to a leaser extent, modesty. Her attitude was along the lines of ‘here I am and you can like me or not but I’m not changing for you’. I loved it!
Her mother was one of the school nurses and Leigh had made a half hearted attempt to follow in her mother’s footsteps. But life was too much fun to be tied down to customary things for her. Now approaching 30, and with two years of nursing school behind her, she’d gotten a part time job as a medical records clerk at the smaller of the two hospitals that served our area. On this day she’d been called in for some work that had kept her too late for the last bus. Davo had gone to pick her up and had stopped on the way back to see what we were doing.

Davo, in spite of his love of racing, didn’t want to have anything to do with working on a race car. He liked to stand around and shoot ‘zingers’ at the guys who worked on the car, especially Cliffy. It was all in good fun and no one took any of his barbs seriously. For reasons never understood, Leigh was happy just being around him, Seldom did she speak and, on this particular evening, sat on a small three step step stool. I’d seen her come in wearing a short Summer skirt but didn’t focus on her at all. However, once on the creeper and under the car I found myself in an unbelievable position… able to look right at her pantied crotch. In sitting here typing this I can almost see the scene unfolding once again.

As I said, modesty was not her forte. When she plopped herself down on the  stool she chose to pull the hem of her skirt up to the point of almost exposing her panties. That wasn’t the end of it… she spread her legs so that her feet were out to the bottom of the legs of the stool. A casual guess was that there was at least 12 if not 14 inches between her knee caps. I was under the car where she couldn’t see me but I sure could see her. Oh my heart! I definitely remember Alan yelling at me to make some adjustment but, with my concentration on Leigh’s crotch, I didn’t hear him. A guess would be about a five minute, unobstructed view.

By the time we all left for the night the car was ready to go and the mood of the guys was upbeat. We were ready for things to start going our way. I could only hope so. We’d been lucky that Fairlane John had stepped up with the cash for the rear end but the reality was there that we, the partners, were going to have to come up with some cash if we were going to be able to continue racing. If nothing else went wrong we had enough money for one more set of tires. What we needed was a good finish, at least third place, to give us a ‘cushion’. The reality of it was there were at least thirty cars at the track aiming for the same thing. In 24 hours we’d know.

To be continued…

Friday, July 14, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER... and whatever it brings (Part 160j)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160j)

It was almost 3pm by the time I got something in my stomach. I’d not gone out of my way to avoid Jerry but by the time he left for the day I still hadn’t spoken to him. I’d been able to contact the just hired head teller, Betsy, and used the upcoming training schedule as my excuse. After hanging up with her I decided to make the calls to the tellers Jerry had hired to apprise them of when and where they were to appear for their training. The first one I called was the one with the relative who had been a race car driver. I was able to quickly ‘bond’ with her with that as a background. On the phone she sounded energetic, positive and anxious to start her training. That was encouraging. The next call was to the woman who’s application was hard to decipher in that it didn’t contain any information as to just what she did in her present job. It took a bit of explaining for me to get her to understand that I was not the man who’d interviewed her. I was scratching my head by the time she grasped that. When I told her that training would start the following Wednesday I waited for her response. None came. I had to ask if she was still on the line. She finally answered that she couldn’t make it. I remember sitting there thinking that I must’ve dialed the wrong number… but it was the right number. It turned out the reason she couldn’t come to the main office was because she didn’t have a car. Upon hearing that I wanted to laugh.

I was on the phone to Rita, the lady I’d interviewed that morning, within seconds. I didn’t get the excited response I’d hoped for but got a nice measured one indicating that she’d probably accept but only after talking to her husband. I made an attempt to get an acceptance right then and there. However, she said that in thinking back to the interview with Jerry, being passed over by him and my leaving in the middle of her interview that morning had left her with a bit of an uneasy feeling about the bank and the management. There was not much I could say to that. I was about to tell her to think it over and to try to get back to me as soon as she felt comfortable when she kind of blurted out a question… “Why was the interviewer’s wife in the room when she was being interviewed?” Now it was my turn to go quiet. I had to make a quick decision… lie and say I didn’t know about it, or… just say I had no idea why. I chose the lie. For sure, I wanted to know myself. I still couldn’t wrap my mind around the reason for her being there. I know I hesitated for a few seconds before I asked her to describe what had taken place. I don’t think she was expecting  the question as she, in turn, hesitated before answering.

She said she saw the other woman when she first walked into the room. She said she asked about her as she was sitting down and said the interviewer (Jerry) just sloughed off her question saying something like “Oh, she’s just my wife.” She said the interviewer started in asking questions with no further reference to the other woman. I jumped in at that stage and asked if his wife ever spoke during the interview. She said she didn’t remember if she did or didn’t but she did remember seeing her make some sort of hand signal. I had to ask where Jerry’s wife was seated during the exchange. She hesitated again and finally said  “In the other window.” Not having seen the room I couldn’t really place all their positions so asked. Rita said it was a really nice room with two bow windows that faced a wooded area with a stream running though it. I honestly remember the stream from when my family had stayed there after WWII. She went on to say that she and the interviewer were seated facing each other in one of the windows. The other woman was in the other bow window but the curtains were drawn. The more I heard the stranger it seemed to get. I interrupted her to say that I really had no idea that the situation had occurred or why the other woman was in the room. I got the sense that Rita had had enough and I’d probably gone too far with that subject. I closed by asking her to think seriously about the offer I’d made (It was for a lot more money than the woman who said she couldn’t come to the training sessions) and to get back to me as soon as possible.

Have you ever been in a situation where you had ’news’ but didn’t know what to do with it? Betsy, the woman I’d hired as a head teller, had told me of Jerry’s wife being present during her interview and, strange as it was, I’d not mentioned it to anyone. Now, I’d just gotten confirmation, with details, of Jerry’s unorthodox interviews. I sat there wondering what to do with the information. I remember wishing I’d had it before Jerry had his meeting with Bert and Hobie. As a result of it though, I was happy about getting clear delineation of my authority over Jerry but his strange behavior was troubling. I don’t remember how long I sat there debating with myself on taking the information to Hobie. He hadn’t seemed too put out about my going ‘over his head’ but I wondered if he’d take this latest bit of ’news’ as ‘bashing’ Jerry. It had been made clear to me that Jerry wasn’t going anywhere so I just ‘sat on it’.

The last thing I did for the day (at work) was to co-ordinate with Lorie and Bret about ‘baby sitting’ the Northern Telecom people the next day. I told Lorie I’d be at the bank by 7:45am and would stay until she got there, hopefully by 8:15 or so. She was OK with that and Bret confirmed he’d be there a little after noon. I remember looking forward to the new phone system… no more dropped calls… being able to dial an extension without having to go through the old PBX board and having the switchboard operator do it for us… being able to put a call on ‘hold’ and then dialing another extension. I knew it would be a period of adjustment until the system was understood but it would be a big step in the right direction.

I was a bit apprehensive on my trip home knowing that Elle hadn’t been happy with how late I’d come in the night before. I knew she’d be totally unhappy with my heading back that night to work some more on the race car. I tried to be positive and upbeat when I walked in fully expecting to see a frown but was greeted with a smile and the announcement that we were going to a party for our dessert. I had no idea what she was talking about. It turned out to be a small farewell party for the German twins that had spent the past few months staying next door with Phyllis and Bill. They were headed back to Pennsylvania the next day to get ready for Summer school to prepare them for college. I’d not seen all that much of them but our kids had and Phyllis thought it would be a nice parting gesture. Since it was all decided I knew better than to open my mouth.

To be continued…

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

HEADING FOR SUMMER... and whatever it brings (Part 160i)

HEADING FOR SUMMER… and whatever it brings (Part 160i)

With Rita gone one of my worries had passed. The next was in what would happen when Jerry appeared. But Mike, the messenger custodian, came up to the gate to the platform to inform me there was a piece of equipment being delivered… the Xerox machine. The old 3M copier had been removed and space enough for the new machine had been cleared so I wasn’t concerned so I asked Bret to oversee the placement of it. I was on my way to see Lorie about the teller training for the new branch employees when I saw Jerry headed towards me. In the months that he’d been there I’d never seen him get upset. But that had changed. He was just about running across the work area as he approached. I’m not sure what it was that he was muttering as he rushed right past me. I fully expected to be attacked, at least verbally, but all he did was to go to his desk, sit and just stare straight ahead. I do remember standing there and thinking “What a wimp”. I’m not sure how I would’ve reacted if he had let go a barrage of disparaging words to me… but because of where we were I was sure glad he didn’t.

I’m not sure I wasn’t shaking a bit when I got to Lorie’s work space to go over the teller training. I tried my best to get on topic but my eyes kept darting towards Jerry. It was Lorie who got me on topic saying she thought she had the training assignments and  schedule worked out. She said she could start the following Wednesday and that would give them a week at the main office and, hopefully, a week at the branch before waiting on any customers. She told me she was going to work closely with Betsy and hoped she would pick up on it quick enough to be able to work with what would be her ‘charges’ at the branch. Time on the teller machines would be her focus for all four of them. Hearing what she had to say in such a positive way kind of lulled me into thinking things were going smoothly. But, just as I had that thought, Bret appeared. The Xerox machine didn’t fit.

I really couldn’t believe what he was telling me. Really. So I trudged up the back stairs to see for myself what he was talking about. Before I even got halfway there I ran into Bert and Hobie as they were leaving the Board room. Hobie told me he wanted to see me but I told him there was a problem with the Xerox. With Bret right there he told him to look into it. Bret, thankfully, spoke up and said he'd already surveyed the situation and that's why I was now involved. That news caused him to want to take a look himself.

As I previously had written, The machine was to go where the old photocopy machine had been. We’d measured the space it was to occupy and that part was fine. What we didn’t take into consideration was the width of the doorway. When the building was built that area was for storage and had no door. All the walls were concrete… a special very hard type. When additional work space was needed it was reconfigured except for one thing… the entryway. It was approximately 28 inches wide and at least an inch more was needed. It wasn’t a case of removing a door and door frames because there weren’t any. We’d already found that to just drill holes in the concrete special drills were needed. Breaking pieces out was not feasible.

The sight of the machine when it arrived had gotten the mortgage department people all excited so they were watching the whole scene evolve. We were committed, by contract, to accept the machine. Now the question was… where to put it. Hobie didn’t have any suggestions and left. Before leaving he told me to come to his desk after the machine was placed. (It finally ended up in the vestibule area just outside the Board room.) That took almost an hour. I’d skipped breakfast and it was now lunch time. I debated with myself as weather I should grab a bite first or go over to see Hobie. Once down the stairs I knew it had to be Hobie.

Naturally, I was concerned. It would be the first time, one on one that day, and I really had no ‘read’ on his feelings about me going to Bert in his absence. He was at his desk and when he looked up just pointed to the side chair. He continued reading what he had in front of him making me feel like I was invisible. It probably wasn’t a minute before he looked up. Expecting at least some  sort of rebuke, I was pleasantly surprised that he told me that Jerry wasn’t to make any more hiring decisions without my express approval. I, of course, wanted to know what had led up to that decision being made… but, wisely, kept my mouth shut. The one thing that did bother me was  wanting me to have Betsy come back to the main office to meet with the three of us (Hobie, Jerry and me) to “clear the air”. I wasn’t sure just what that meant but knew I had my ‘marching orders’.

By then I was craving something to eat. But, before I got to the door I’d been reminded that the bank had to provide access to the Northern Telecom crew on Saturday so they could install, program and check out the new electronic switchboard. Bret had agreed to come in just after mid day and stay until they left. There was no one else but me to open the doors for the workers and I surely wasn’t happy about that. Now, with racing the car, I no longer had all day Saturday for chores and things around the house. As I headed over to the luncheonette I saw Lorie. She waved to me to wait for her and when I did she asked a question that I’d not even taken into consideration… would the installation of the new telephone equipment interfere with data transmission? With my stomach now growling, I went back inside the bank with her and called Albie at the data center.

While waiting for him to be located I chatted a bit with Lorie about the new phones. I volunteered that if the test the next day went well we’d all be in much better shape as far as communications in the bank were concerned. I explained that we’d be able to just push buttons to speak to anyone located in the building. That seemed to impress her. Frustrated about my having to come in to oversee the testing, I mentioned it to her. When I heard her say the words “I could do that for you…” I wanted to jump up and kiss her.

It wasn’t that easy. Only officers had keys which meant she wouldn’t be allowed to do it. There was one thing that was clearly on my side in this matter… Lorie was Hobie’s favorite. That had been made clear many times over (including her being chosen over Gina for the chief clerk position). I decided to approach Hobie about it and was much relieved to hear him say “OK”… as long as I was the one to unlock and open the building up. When I told him Bret would be there for the afternoon he signed off on it. I was free… sort of…

To be continued…