Lydia rustled through the paper work on her desk. She really hated doing the monthly bills, but they were piling up again. The last bill to pay was her phone bill. First she needed to check her balance to make sure she had enough money.
Her addition sucked. She shoved the papers out of her way in search of the calculator. It was hidden under the paid pile.
After punching in the numbers she determined a shortage in her account. The phone bill would have to wait another month. Hopefully they would not shut off her phone before she could come up with the money needed to pay the bill.
Lydia noticed the time. She had better hurry or she would be late for work. Another day another dollar she thought. Did that mean another dollar less or more, she wondered. Lately it seemed like a dollar less.
She picked up her purse and keys along with a few paid bills and hurried out the door. Lucas was already waiting with the rest of the car pool.
Lydia waved her handful of envelopes at his window before taking a spot in the backseat. She felt crowded with three of them stuffed in the backseat. They were always fighting for a window. An hour ride to work every day, and sitting next to Allan was not her favorite thing to do. He was one of those people who had a problem with sweating and his deodorant did not always work.
This was one of those days. How wonderful, and it was her day to sit in the middle. “Hey Lucas, I hope you don’t mind…but could you stop at the nearest mailbox? Got some bills that need to go out.”
“ Lydia…I got you a coffee this morning.” Carrie handed the hot drink cup to her.
“Thanks.” Lydia said. She exchanged the envelopes for the cup of coffee. The cup was still really hot. One road bump would be all it would take to toss that hot coffee on everybody in the back seat including herself. She would have to wait until they got to work before she dared take the lid off.
The office was not her favorite place to be. Not every one likes their job and Lydia was one of them. Ugh…she thought as she sat in her chair, stuffing her purse underneath her desk out-of-the-way
Lydia had a feeling that this would not be a good day. She took off the lid to her cup of coffee and almost dumped it all over her papers. That would have been a disaster in its self.
Patrick, her boss approached her desk and set a stack of files down for her to go through. “I need these people called immediately.”
“All right. I will get right on it.”
Lydia looked at the first file. It was for a woman in the state of Maine. The woman owed five hundred dollars to a credit company. This call went well with the woman agreeing to send in a substantial payment to cover the bill for one month.
The next file was for another woman living in Florida. She owed three hundred dollars for a doctor bill. This turned out to be another successful file taken care of.
The last file was the moment she had been bracing for. It was for a man who owed fifteen hundred dollars for some sporting equipment. She argued with him, for a good fifteen minutes, over the bill itself.
“You have the wrong number,” he kept stating. Finally he demanded to speak to her supervisor.
“Hold on one moment.”
Lydia found Patrick in his office and she explained the problem with the account. Patrick said he would handle it. She went back to her desk and forwarded the call to his office.
Five minutes later he stood in front of her desk. “ Problem with the account you just handled. It turns out to have been a wrong number listed in the file. If you had double checked the number before calling it you would have noticed the discrepancy in the number.”
Lydia pursed her lips together and made a silent Oh.
“ I have spoken to you about this for the last time. I have to let you go.” Ryan said sternly.
“But…but…” Lydia tried to plead.
“ You need to gather your things. You no longer work here.” Patrick moved the chair exposing her purse below the desk.
Lydia finally got the words out of her mouth. “ But I did not drive here today. I can’t leave until Lucas leaves.” She hoped if only she could get him to let her finish out the day. Maybe then he would change his mind.
“It does not matter.” He picked up the phone and punched in the numbers. “ Hi there…could you send a cab to 247 Office Park Drive. Great. Thank you.” Patrick hung up the phone. “They are sending you a cab. Get your stuff and let’s go.”
Lydia bit her trembling lip. She wondered why this could not have happened to Allan instead. Why did this have to happen to her.
She slipped the strap of her purse over her shoulder and followed Patrick out of the building.
The phone bill was going to have to wait. Maybe in a few months Allan would be calling her in an attempt to collect the payment from her. She never liked bill collectors anyways. This must have been why she never liked her job in the first place. She had become one of them in the end.
Copyright © December 2010