Story Starter: My New Desk

My new desk

It’s hard to believe that I’ve been at my new desk a week already. Our removers had us settled in incredibly efficiently so that we were back to work as usual by 11 a.m. on Monday. Impressive.

So, first impressions? It’s all very shiny and new and state-of-the-art, and every one of the nine floors look like they’re part of a modern, successful media empire.

We’ve spent this week exploring our new environment, exclaiming over how different it is from our old, and how unbelievably different from how we remember this old building before the refurbishment. In fact, “refurbishment” doesn’t quite  do the process justice. It’s a total transformation.

We’re on the first floor, overlooking the rather fine buildings of Dundee High School. And those of us who’ve been here before can hardly wait for the weekly rehearsals of the pipe band to start again in the playground on Friday afternoons!

I’ve had to find a different lunchtime walk, of course, since we’re not near our lovely beach where I used to escape each day for a midday break. But there are gardens nearby. There’s the Dundee Green Circular Route, a pedestrian/cycle path which takes you away from the traffic. It’s nice. There are two gigantic and beautiful parks, each about a ten-minute walk in opposite directions from here.

Some of us are browsing bookshops. The joy of being back close to Waterstone’s! Angela’s already been to A Sense Of Place, the latest exhibition at the McManus Galleries right across the road from the office. Shopping. Home for lunch. Out for lunch. We’re all trying different things. It’s quite refreshing.

Last night when I left, the bells of the Old Steeple were ringing and resounding all around the Overgate shopping centre. What a sound!

We’ve had some funny moments, too. Builders are still busy on some external areas. Yesterday we were working away, and there was a knock at a door in the corner of the office that goes….well, we’re not sure, but outside to some kind of access tower. And it’s a door we can’t open. And there was a man calling from the other side to say he was stuck out there and couldn’t get into the building! We made a few phone calls, and after about ten minutes of reassuring chat through the door, someone appeared with the right key, and yay, in he came. He got quite a cheer.

So that’s a round-up of my first impressions from my new desk. I wonder if any of that constitutes a story starter…? New address: The People’s Friend, D.C. Thomson & Co. Ltd., 2 Albert Square, Dundee, DD1 9QJ.

Shirley Blair

Fiction Ed Shirley’s been with the “Friend” since 2007 and calls it her dream job because she gets to read fiction all day every day. Hobbies? Well, that would be reading! She also enjoys writing fiction when she has time, long walks, travel, and watching Scandi thrillers on TV.