Wednesday, February 14, 2007


She ruled her department with the proverbial iron hand in a silk glove.

The emergency department itself would be back-upped beyond all get- out and within seconds of a phone call to her one of the hard-working housekeeping staff would be in the room cleaning it up so we could ready it for the next patient.

There was never a more competent nor user-friendly department manager. Whatever was happening or not-happening was always clearly and rationally defined. We always knew when things would be ready and if there were any hold-ups there was a definition of the time-frame involved.

Clear. Rational. So plain a two-year-old would understand it. I loved working with her. She had things down to the minute. Like wet paint on a bench, but she gave you a drying time-line.

I worked with her for several years and there were never any interdepartmental crapfests, as is expected in hospital culture. She was an angel and we were all, hospital-wide, grateful for her professionalism.

Then one day she disappeared.

As it so happens, she was "not legal."

Though she had worked for the hospital for years, starting out as a floor-mopping housekeeper, she came to head the department, and she lead it for a decade. Damn.

She had a house in Awhuatukee. This is a pretty nice neighborhood here in the Valley and housing there is not inexpensive so I must conclude that she had done well for her family.

Anyways, she was there one day and gone the next. Her legal status came up on some middle-mucky-muck's radar and she was gone like the day-before-yesterday's garbage.

It was never the same after that. All the friendly and well-known-to-us housekeeping staff similarly disappeared and a bunch of unknowns came on board.

We never really got to know any of them because turnover was so great. Once we got to know them by name they were gone. "Randy" stuck around for about six months but he was just about the only one there long enough for us to get to know him a little. Great guy, probably much nicer than the baseball pitcher with a similar name, though I hear that he is nice too.

She probably sold her house to a lawyer or a doctor and moved back to Mexico.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Another Valley resident.

I gather you're not much in favor of the hoo-haw over the illegals...

Insanity rules here.