Appropriate IT

Friday, October 31, 2008

Off Site Office

So there I am, in the middle of the woods on a beautiful late October afternoon. I'm staked out on a tall, lake point with towering pines all around me. The sun warms me through the trees while I sit in a folding chair inhaling the clean fall aroma of leaves and pine needles.

The occasion is a highly anticipated PTO day to take advantage of a dwindling fall. I'm sitting in my chair with my rifle in my lap, soaking up the sun and waiting for the red squirrels to come back out of hiding. We like to keep their population low this time of year so they don't end up chewing up the cabins, sheds and boats that are stored for the winter.

I've finally got a visual on the noisy squirrel to the east when my leg starts to vibrate and Collective Soul starts to play. My cell phone. It's a support technician informing me that our retail pharmacy vendor has made a mess of our point of sale terminals.

Frankly, the fact that the call even comes through in the middle of the wooded, Wisconsin nowhere is a miracle brought about just within the last year. I actually have two-bars of signal out on the point. She conferences in the vendor and the troubleshooting begins in earnest.

At that point, Mr. Wire-Eating red squirrel ventures out from behind a stump and stops to present a perfect shot. Just as I'm set to hit the mute button, put down the phone and pick up my rifle, I hear my name: "Eric, you said you had archived the client installation packages, can you give us the UNC path to them?"

Sigh. Yes. I can. I scowl a bit as I watch the squirrel wander off while I give the technicians the paths and other site-related information needed to restore the terminals.

The conferences ends, I put the phone back in my pocket, pick up my rifle and lean back in the chair. Once again, the aroma of fall and the warmth of the sun fills my senses. Eventually, a smile settles on my face as I contemplate the surrealism of the whole event.

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