Back when I worked in the Land of Cubicles, I was fairly aware of the environment or atmosphere that I was working in. Normally, I was more aware of noises or people or smells that were 'out of place', and if none of those popped up, I was lulled into focussed concentration by the white noise pumped into the office at a carefully controlled decibel by our facilities team.
You think I'm kidding? Have you ever been on an airplane when they turn the fans or air circulation off for a minute or two, and did you feel like your ears are going to explode because of this new found deafening silence? I have been in the Land of Cubicles after hours when the white noise was turned off, and it was like the world stopped spinning...until I realized what happened.
So, what is the atmosphere like in my home office? Let's see, today, the air is filled with smoky sweet smells of elk jerky cooking in the food dehydrator (Jake's hobby of the day), music from my Ray LaMontagne Pandora station (which Jake just handed me headphones for...subtle hint?), and the sounds of neighborhood dogs barking...with Lexi occasionally in the mix. Another regular occurance is the SLAM of our metal mailbox on the side of our house whenever the mail-person (gender inclusive, yes), decided to VIOLENTLY drop our mail off. Perhaps I should leave a little note on the box, 'Quiet Please: the homewerker is in residence'?
I'm just thankful that when I burn popcorn I don't have to shuffle out to the parking lot with 900 of my closest colleagues so the fire department can check the building. I'm also thankful I don't have to clip on my badge every day that says, yes, I belong here and I am ALLOWED to be here. No, I don't need an escort to the front door.
Time for true confessions. In the Land of Cubicles, I always secretly wanted one of those silly rear-view mirrors for my computer, so I could see who was sneaking up behind me in my cube ("Of course I was looking at Facebook for WORK!"). I never caved, because I kind of thought they had a slight connotation of 'office creeper', but my dear co.werkers, I now no longer have to even pretend that I want one of those. The only rear-view mirror in my life now is on my Jeep, and it is only used for getting out of my driveway and heading into the wonderful world of cozy coffee shops with free wi-fi.
Elk jerky, anyone?