The Monster "Smythe"

Today is a day of recovery. You see, Friday I was handed a monster - a monster JOB, that is.

Wednesday I got 2 calls for jobs, both needing to be done Saturday. I was busy building a much-needed addition to my deck and was on a roll. So I told both parties that I was unavailable that day and made arrangements to meet them both the following day.

I met with Stacey at her office: "Smythe and Smythe Law Office" first. She had nothing ready for me, apparently she had cartons and cartons of pictures, keepsakes and documents to go through. She viewed our first meeting as more of a consultation. So I moved on to the next appointment. These were the Gresset sisters. We met at the library and sat at a little kid table. They were well prepared, as most customers are. They knew most of what the wanted and were ready for me to go to work. There were 66 pictures to build a slideshow around, and they had the music chosen and provided on CD. A piece of cake.

I went home and got right to work. I had to meet back with one of the sisters the next morning as they discovered 2 pictures that should have been included but were left behind. No problem as I had to meet with Stacey at her office again anyway, I just scheduled them back to back like I had previously.

So now it's Thursday morning. I get the loose pictures from the Gresset sister and head over to the law office. No Stacey, she forgot about our appointment, so I rescheduled for 2 hours later. I get there at 11:30 and her assistant hadn't told her I would be returning. OK, so we reschedule for the next morning - Friday, the day before it's due. OK, no problem, I usually get them done in about 6 hours or so.

Friday morning first I deliver my Gresset DVDs to one of the sisters and get paid. I head over to Stacey's office. She's there in her sweats plowing through tons of stuff still. Her phone keeps ringing. She still has only 2 songs chosen and I could see she would need more - many more. She has an accordion-type file folder with baggies and sheet protectors full of pictures. She has sticky notes attached to things with text she wants included on the pictures. She has an order for the baggies and then an order for the individual pictures. She has photo albums with sticky notes sticking out of them. Finally she takes a picture down off the wall. 2 hours of going through things, discussing how to do the slideshow - she wants chapters. A LOT of work. And she needs it in 24 hours.

I get home and immediately start batch scanning. That took about 4 hours (normally about an hour). Then I grabbed everything and headed down to Rick's. I fly into his place and remind him that he's offered to help me with any of these that I may need help with and let him know that the time has arrived.

I get stuff set up and start separating and cropping the scanned pictures. Then I went through what I had and gave him over 30 to repair. He's very persnickety and did a very good job. He started with the hardest ones, thank goodness. We worked until 12:30 AM.
There were over 200 pictures, keepsakes, documents, newspaper clippings, etc. Exactly what I like to see in a slideshow. But the sheer size of the job made it just so stressful.

I got up about 7 the next morning and got right back into it. I had to contact Stacey as she still had no instructions for the wording for the beginning and ending of the slideshow. She needed more songs. I convinced her to let us choose a few classical style instrumentals to add, we couldn't wait any longer. I told her the lack of music had finally stopped the project dead in it's tracks.

I got back to work and finally was ready to render and when that began we saw that it was going to take an hour and a half just to render. Then I still had to burn it to the DVD. Augh!

We got it burned and in the meantime Rick had printed up some labels for them. We grabbed the DVD, stuck the label on and headed off for the Country Club where the reception was being held, only 15 minutes late. On the way I noticed that the label wouldn't stick, the DVD has a special coating on it to make it printable, if you have a printer that'll print on DVDs, that is. So I simply removed it and gave her a DVD with no label. In a way I think it was good, it made it look like we'd hurried even more than we had. I gave her the DVD and made arrangements to drop off her materials, the other DVD and CD and collect the check on Monday.

I was still so stressed though, having been unable to preview it. Normally I preview and tweak 2 or 3 times before I feel "done". So I burned another copy of what I'd given her and we sat and watched all 25 minutes. I was thrilled to see that in spite of 2 minor typos and a few pictures out of order it was a very well done job. Now I could rest. The unknown was eating me up. A bunch of rich snobs were going to watch this show that I'd delivered to their black tie function in my jeans and sneakers. I didn't want it to reflect what they probably assumed based on my appearance.

Now I get to recover and start making some changes to my pricing sheet . . . .

0 cats hacked up hairballs:

About Me

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After 2 unsuccessful marriages I spent 12 years as a divorcee, only to fall prey to another man's wiles. We had a fun 5 years together and then he decided he wanted more freedom so once again I'm single.

So I'm freshly divorced at 57 and have 5 great kids and now 7 grandkids. My kids are still a major part of my life but I'm busy helping my aging parents on Kauai.

I've lived in California, Hawaii and Oklahoma before finally settling here in Washington. I love Washington and come back to visit family, friends and take care of my garden often but will be temporarily a resident of Kauai.

I've moved 30 times in my life (no, my parents weren't in the service, at least not since I was about 2) and finally planted roots when I got my little house that I've owned since '91.

My family are Jehovah's Witnesses, I've been one since '72.