The next day I came in early so I could meet up with Natasha from the department store. I found the café on my own and ordered a Pepsi Max and got out my one and half sandwiches of peanut butter which Mum always makes for me.
I’d nearly finished eating when Natasha turned up, followed by Maria, Judy and Annie. After they ordered their drinks, we got down to sharing our stories. Maria and Judy went to the same high school and have boyfriends. Both wear lots of makeup and giggle a lot. They’re both black-haired but that could be dyed. They have to wear the stores’ clothes but can choose their footwear – runners.
Natasha was the oldest and I was the youngest. Nat had been the longest working at the Centre and she was being groomed to be a manager. This meant she had time off work to do courses in management.
I asked her if she was doing courses in social media but she had had only one session on it as others were employed in that area. She was glad she had some competence in typing as others in her class were definitely not touch-typists.
All of us have Facebook pages and Twitter accounts and we shared our Facebook names and Twitter hash tags. I’m not too sure that was a bright idea as I don’t know them very well yet.
We have two things in common – leaving school early and being teenagers.
We also work in different areas and I felt an infinity with Annie as she works in a gift shop.
Not all of us are working tonight – only Annie and I. I promised to find out my time off for tea to see if I can meet her between 6.30 and 7 pm.
At the end of lunch time, I went back with Annie to her shop to check it out while I waited to start my work. We exchanged mobile phone numbers and I would text ‘yes’ or ‘no’ if I can meet her.
I left Annie on a high and made my way to my shoe shop. I asked my boss, Mr McKenna, what time would be OK for me to have tea.
“Any time after 6”, he said, “My daughter, Melanie, will be coming in to help out as it gets busy on Thursday evenings.”
I texted Annie with a ‘yes’.
The afternoon was a bit slow but Mr McKenna taught me a few things about selling shoes. Melanie turned up at 6 pm and I went to tea with Annie around 6.30 pm.
We went to another shop in the food court and ordered dinner. It was quite noisy but Annie has a deep voice which I love listening to. She’s taller than me and a year older, with auburn hair. She wears runners because they’re more comfortable standing up. She’s quite tanned and I asked her about going sunbathing. She laughed and said that was her natural colour. She’s part Aborigine but I wouldn’t have guessed it. She’s also got a smart dress on, very slimming, as the owner of the shop likes her assistants to look classy. I had a million questions I wanted to ask her but we ran out of time. I’ll have to wait until Saturday as she’s not working tomorrow night.
I thought I was working 6 days a week but Mum rang Mr McKenna and said 6 days was too much for me to do in my first job. So I’ll have Monday and Tuesday off as my weekend and hopefully my friends from school and work have similar shifts.
Oh, it’s my birthday today and the family celebrated over breakfast. I got the usual girly things like makeup and perfume – cheap and nasty. Mum said I already had her present – using her credit card to buy Kindle books.
Back at work Melanie and I worked well together, I think. She’s coming in again tomorrow and maybe we can hang out later before my parents pick me up.
Today I was picked up at 9.10 pm and I explained to Melanie how it was my birthday. She sort of squealed and wished me ‘happy birthday. I hope we can be friends for a long time.
When I got home and got onto my computer, my school friends had again wished me ‘happy birthday’ and when could we catch up. I messaged back ‘soon’ and told them my hours and two days off. Hopefully it will be soon.
Will I lose my school friends as I meet work friends? I need an interim goal as the car deposit is too far off.