This is another in my semi-regular series of excuses for not updating this blog in a timely enough manner. I have been busy.
To clarify what that means, I think people know I have a job. Regular take-a-lunch-box-to-the-office 5-days-a-week three-weeks-vacation fill-out-timesheet type stuff. Fortunately, my employer has adopted a fortnight flex day schedule for all employees (meaning I work 7.75 hours for 9 days every fortnight, and get every second Monday off) and my employer has agreed to a small concession of unpaid leave for alternate Mondays when I have New West Council duties (which turns out to only be about 12 days a year). This still means I spend (on average) 35 hours a week completing Comfort Letter requests, administering dewatering agreements, reviewing Site Profiles, managing contaminated sites investigation and remediation projects and coordinating the technical aspects of PS3260 Accounting Standards compliance. It is fun and I work with a great team of people, so no complaints on my part. But it does eat into my time.
This week (as an aside, but to demonstrate the general chaos of my life right now), I took a couple of hours of my vacation time (with prior approval from my boss) to have a morning meeting with representatives from The Shops at New Westminster Station, Fraser Health, TransLink Police, NW Police Department, and New West Bylaw Enforcement to do a walkaround at New Westminster Station and the surrounding bus loops, retail areas and sidewalks to discuss a collaborative approach to making the area a more inviting pedestrian and public space, with an emphasis on how the various Provincial and City anti-smoking bylaws could be applied to address one of the primary complaints about the area (see pic above). Wow, that was a long sentence. I hope to be able to report an update on that meeting soon.
After work most nights, my schedule is rather chaotic. This week, I had a frustrating committee meeting with the Royal Lancers on Tuesday, and pinch-hit for Councillor Harper to chair a much more positive and productive Residents’ Association Forum on Wednesday. Thursday is free (hence me writing this), but I have, since Monday’s Council Day, received about 50 e-mails to my Council address, which will take some time to triage and decide what requires a response. Some may even require multiple e-mail exchanges with staff or others to gather the data required for a useful response. If you e-mailed me and I have not responded yet, my apologies. I have read it, and will try to get back to you as soon as practicable. And on Friday, I receive the Council Package I need to review in detail before Monday. I also have to organize my Jane’s Walk for Saturday, so that will have to be done tonight or Friday night, as I work Friday. I will probably get something figured out by Saturday Morning.
This is not meant to be a whine. I chose my path (and as has been joked, I went door-to-door begging for it!). So this is more an explanation why my blogging and other correspondence is, occasionally, less timely than I would like it to be. There are a few “Ask Pat” posts in the queue, and I am late assembling the April 27 Council Report. It also explains the lack of copy editing on this blog – any attempts at scanning for typos likely occurred after midnight.
On the plus side, I did get a great bike ride in on Sunday morning, and the New West Lit Fest last weekend was a great event, so it isn’t all toil. Actually, I am loving it.