Wednesday, March 09, 2005


Days when I love my job...

Monday, aside from the whole doctor's visit, was an incredible day in work terms.

Red Cross has changed their water safety lesson program yet again. I did "Colours" (Heather made me fail Grey), and taught "Colours" before they switched to "Aquaquest" and will now be managing the switch to "Red Cross Swim".

Back last fall, when they announced the new program would be ready to go in early 2005, I decided that my pool would switch over to the new program in May, to give us a fresh start ("Winter" lessons end in March, and then our staff all get April off for exams and whatnot, before buckling down to make some serious dough all summer) and to let us work the kinks out before hitting our busy season in July.

Sometime late December, I heard that UBC appeared to be the first pool to do the transition. Alrighty, then.. let's boldly go where no one has gone before!

Early February, I started looking for materials. I wanted level details, I wanted posters and graphics, I wanted samples of all the marketing tools, badges, progress cards... I wanted it all. The "Rollout" of materials was now announced for late March. Instructor Trainers wouldn't be updated until late April. I started to panic. Lots.

Our staff, heading into exams in April, had agreed to doing an inservice night in early April, to get it over with. So.. I needed to find an Instructor Trainer to run the session. Oops, no one would be trained in time.

Our final Winter lesson set would be ending late March, so.. I needed to help the parents get comfortable with the new program before expecting them to register in it on the last day of lessons. Oops, no materials would be ready in time.

Our new Red Cross Instrucor Trainer program would start early May, so I would need an updated Instructor Trainer to commit to the dates of the course far enough in advance that I wouldn't have to stress about it as our Spring lessons actually begin. Again, no one knew if they'd be trained in time.


Last week, I started emailing the Red Cross Call Centre (in Calgary, I think), and our Lower Mainland Regional Representative. Lots. And Lots. And More. Begging, pleading, hoping that just MAYBE they might be willing to let me look at a few things before the "official" launch date. Explaining my deadlines. Whining. (Wait... did I whine? Hm... well, maybe a little)

I got emails back.. the first few directing me to the resources already published on a temporary site with update information. Nope, wouldn't cut it. The next couple explained that the launch date of all the stuff was just a couple weeks away. Still not quite working for me, due to pressure of time crunch. Last one said "Hey. We don't have it yet.. it isn't that I don't want to give it to you early, but National hasn't actually given it to US at all!"

And then one more: "Wait! I may have something for you on Monday!"

I got an email from the CallCentre, with the graphics I had been asking for, so I could create the promotional posters explaining the new system, with something more than just plain type.

I got an email from the Regional Rep, with an advance draft copy of the staff training outline, that would be easy enough to follow that I could do it myself if an IT was unavailable.

I got a voice mail from an Instructor Trainer who has been involved in the revisions process, was highly familiar with the new program, who came highly recommended by the Regional Rep, and who was available for ALL THE DATES OF THE INSTRUCTOR COURSES!

It was a damn fine day.

So fine, that in my glory of Red Cross Love, I went to an Aquatic Programmers meeting today, and wound up inviting all of the Lower Mainland pools to send representatives from their facilities to attend our training session and experience the changeover as we were attempting it.

I haven't told Katie yet. She's the Head Guard here, and the person who plans the general training sessions. I might have to make her some beads.

Anyway.. this is the type of work that I really love.. the planning, the design, the implementation... and then anticipation the kudos as everyone agrees that I'm just damn incredible, talented, not to mention lovely AND modest. Teehee.. looks like it will be a good month.

Weather: From grayesque (gray? grey? Can anyone help me remember this?) to amazingly warm and sunny... very lovely.

Chai's so far: one morning, and one evening. Not bad... and neither in a paper cup!

Water exposure so far: morning bath, a quick dip at the start of polo practice before coaching it (including the two teen boys in LONG {ie, incredibly dragging and heavy} shorts who decided they wanted to give it a try), sitting in the swamp that was the hot tub with BAAAAAAD chemicals, then actually using soap in the shower to rinse off the weird sticky residue.

Craft project in progress: I'm on the collar! WOO! The meeting this morning, plus a mini stitch-n-bitch last night, gave me enough time to finish re-doing the shoulder decreases, so I've short-rowed the yoke (so the back sits higher on my neck, and the front scoops down to my clavicles) and started doing K1, P1 for the collar! MIGHT be done tomorrow....

Another day of no music... except for brief moments of preschool-aged songs at the meeting

Wardrobe: Old Navy top n bottom.. new beige tank, to be worn under new cardi when done, and my long dark jeans, plus my black Birki slides... comfy :)

Okay, I *vaguely* remember not qualifying for Bronze Cross recertification after guarding at Naramata (I got lazy), but what did I have to do with you and Grey??

All three dictionaries at my disposal say gray=grey, so do what you want.

Congrats on things coming together - that's what usually happens when you see an opportunity and act on it! Gotta work...
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