1 Mar 2012
On this last day of February, a leap year, I am wondering how many people are going to try and get to their bank or jump on the internet to make their RRSP contributions for tax year 2011. We have till 11:59 p.m., February 29th, to make that contribution. It also reminds me of people who wait until the last day (April 30th) in the final hour to drop off their personal income tax returns. In the days before e-filing, it was like a great ritual - I have only seen these people being filmed on the evening news!
I have an obsession with time. If people only knew that at one point, I had 6 watches in my possession (most were gifts), you might think that's crazy! Well, then again, some of you might think -- only 6? That's not so bad. Well, it drove me crazy every time their batteries died. We all know, these things don't all die at the same time! I felt like the cost of batteries bled me unnecessarily. We all have gadgets which have batteries. That seems to be the way life is these days. Charging them can also be tedious. Well, finally, I decided to get solar powered watches -- no battery replacements and environmentally friendly!
My dad was a sea captain and was part of the British Royal Navy during WWII. For him, being on time was crucial. Because of him, my mom and I were TRAINED to be on time. Being early was more preferable, however, being on time was the norm. When we had a family dinner at a restaurant, my sisters always reminded their kids to be on time or their grandpa will get upset. I think he was better when he got older but, let me assure you, one of his favourite possessions was a good, reliable watch!
My dad use to say, the ship will sail without you if you are late. My mom remembers an incident when she and I sailed around the world on a cargo ship with my dad. Once, some of the crew had taken me sightseeing. The ship was suppose to sail that day. My dad paced back and forth wondering if we would return on time. The horrid days without cell phones! My mom says, they were so happy when they finally saw us arriving -- yes, we did make it on time, but, a very close call!
I was always on time for school, church service, work -- with exceptions under unusual circumstances, of course. Even when I told a friend I would meet them somewhere or would be at their home at a certain time, I would usually be prompt or early. Friends know, it is not like me to be late. And, as a courtesy, my parents (especially dad) trained me to call them if I was going to be late.
Why is it important to be on time?
For businesses, time is money! If we are always late for doctor's appointments, that will throw their schedule off. You may not think it is a big problem, but, the people scheduled after you could have problems. Imagine if everyone was late, the doctor would have to stay later. We all complain about wait times at the doctor's office -- part of the problem may be not knowing how much time is required for each patient, but, the other problem could be patients arriving late. I understand the elderly and little kids may not be able to stick to being on time. I also have to say, I have seen various different doctors myself and with my mom. Half hour is not so bad at my family doctor, but, when you have to wait two hours or more, that's just ridiculous!
If we are always late for work and come and go with no regard to the employer's time, some would say, you are "stealing" company time. Some people rely on public transportation and it is not always timely. It only takes me 45 minutes to get to work, if there are no delays, but, I try to leave an hour and a half before my start time at 9 a.m. I am simply too stressed if I leave later. Traffic gets more congested and I want to get a seat on the subway so I can read and relax before starting work. For me, it's a benefit of leaving earlier.
If you are always late for school, think about what you are missing? In college/university, although you may not get into trouble for being late, you may miss important information that's crucial to an assignment or test if you are always late. You may have to ask classmates for notes that you missed. Your prof may have to repeat what you missed and would not be too happy to do that all time for you.
If you are always late for church, you may not have time to settle down and prepare your spirit to worship God. You rush in because you are late. You make an excuse that it's just "singing" at the beginning of service - at least, you are there for the pastor's message. The singing is not mere singing -- it is time to praise and worship God. That important part of service is preparation for receiving God's message to you. You might think your spirit can switch gears very quickly but that's not the case. It's like flying to the dining table, eat really fast, have a quick conversation with your spouse or kids and rush out again and then believe that you had great communication with them - assuming that is the only time you spend with them, which hopefully is not the case. If you wonder why your kids do not talk to you, maybe the adult needs to set a better example.
If you always do not pay your bills on time, you will incur late payment charges which can surely add up. It would be more beneficial for us to get into the habit of paying on time.
Change in Perception
As I have mentioned, my dad trained us to be on time. When I had to meet people and they arrived late, I felt as though they did not respect my time. I make huge efforts to not keep someone waiting, so, I would get really ticked off. Then, along enters a man into my life who is not always on time. I am okay if he tells me if he's going to be late, but, sometimes, it is just too much. I realize that being late for the movies is not so crucial - so, I can live with that. In the early part of our relationship, I asked myself if our differences in perspective about timeliness would effect our relationship. If being on time was the deal breaker in a relationship, I would have broken up with him a long time ago. LOL. There is no "perfect" relationship because we are not perfect. If we wanted everything OUR way, that's selfishmess! You might as well go live IN A BUBBLE!
I have watched tv programs, read articles, heard interviews, listened to various women talk about their husbands/ex-husbands, boyfriends/ex-boyfriends. Men cheated on women, were alcoholics and drug addicts, stole from their wives/girlfriends, made their partners support them financially - that's just for starters! My boyfriend is none of the above. If my biggest peeve is that he is late because he is visiting his dad at the nursing home, my friends, I realized that I needed to be grateful for what I have!
I have encountered people on the buses and subways who become extremely upset when there are delays. It means that they will be late for work or an appointment. I know I would be upset if I was late. But, I think about what it could mean. I think about the people in New York City who were trying to get to work on September 11th, 2001. They were late that day and did not make it into their office when two planes struck the Twin Towers. Their lives were spared. So, when I am in the midst of a subway delay, I think, perhaps, I was not meant to be somewhere too early. I need to arrive at work calm and alive! If I am going to be late, I try to let my office know.
I am still learning lessons every day at this stage of my life. It is not easy and even troubling to have to change something we have always known or been taught since childhood. When God brings people to help change our lives for the better, we ought to be grateful. We should accept change as a blessing.
I hope February has not been too rough for you. I had fun at the Canadian International Auto Show with Larry. He is so knowledgeable about cars and I love to learn from him. If you have a chance, check out my photos at www.flickr.com/photos/katszone/sets/72157629096773398/.
In a few days, I will be attending the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) convention again! I think this is my 10th year! In the last few years, I have tried to take days off for the entire convention. This year, I became a PDAC member and will be a full-fledged delegate -- LOL. OMG -- so excited!!! Looking forward to the technical programs, presentations, meet & greets, exhibits, trade shows and hanging out with buddies that I have met throughout the years at the largest mining industry convention in the world! This is MY March Break!
I will be back next month to bring you more news. Thanks for reading another episode of KaTsZoNe!
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