Wouldn’t Swap Him For The World!

Wouldn’t Swap Him For The World!

‘You look especially well,’ he said; his eyes, the colour of a perfect summer sky, twinkling, always sparkling eyes. He gestured with his hands over his face, and didn’t stop there: ‘You’re glowing, you look really fresh.’ He sat down on a plastic chair at the round table alongside my desk.


‘I’m happy to be back,’ I said, thinking he’s the one who’s recently returned from a trip – not me.


‘Happy to be back in South Africa?’


‘Happy to be back in my own office, to be back with you.’


‘That fills me with such joy to hear.’


‘Oh and I took your advice,’ I said.


‘You did?’


‘I walked away, and not looking back.’ He had told me that he’d wished he’d listened to his friend, a player that once said if one breaks up with someone then walk away, cut all ties and do not look back. It ended for a reason, always remember that. If it’s worth working on or fighting for then stay and work things out; do not ever leave.


‘That explains your fresh look,’ he said. ‘Now you know it’s what you were meant to do. You’ve shacked up with someone new already, haven’t you? I knew it had to do with a shag…’


‘No!’ I said, with mock horror in my voice. ‘I’m not that quick.’


His executive assistant strolled in to my office then. She needed him to sign papers. He went on to explain how it would appear, by my skin tone that I am now getting it all again.


‘I wish,’ I said.


‘There’s no stopping you, is there?’ His assistant tenderly scowled at him.


After his assistant left, I asked him about his trip. He explained how desperately he needed it and felt like a new man for it. I teased him about returning a day early. He told me how he couldn’t get on with such a remote place, a place I’d never heard of in the back and beyond of the Northern Cape. It had bored him to near tears.


I could listen to him for hours chatting on any subject. Whenever he opened his mouth, he parted wisdom. His intelligence and experience and openness made me respect him even more, if that’s possible. Ask him anything and he will reveal all; I appreciate that very much in any person.


‘If anyone doesn’t like what I say then that’s their problem. If I never see them again then I’ve probably gained…’ he once said to me. ‘If you worry about what people think you’ll have no time for anything else.’


He says it how it is and doesn’t suffer fools on any level.


He doesn’t say anything bad out right about someone, but will tell a story that paints only one picture, a picture that taints your memory of the person in question, the questionable person.


He’s got the greatest sense of humour I’ve ever encountered, and rather theatrical with it.


His attention span is limited so the challenge is to get him gripped as quickly as possible and then anything is possible.


He trusts his gut so much so that he will give someone a chance if that good feeling is there. He told me the good feeling was with him the moment I opened my mouth during the interview.


He oozes calmness, and I could never imagine him allowing anything to anger him.


This man is the second-best boss I’ve ever had, and wouldn’t swap him for the world. In my interview he said, ‘Looking at your CV, it would appear that you’re a keen job-hopper. Why should I invest in you, only for you to leave within a year?’


‘If you were unhappy in a job would you stay just to make your CV look good?’


He looked at me blankly before that twinkle in his eyes brightened and his face broke out into a smile. ‘Not on your life,’ he said and laughed. ‘When can you start?’


Mr Bats, if you’re reading this then you’re the first best boss I’ve ever had, of course. Yes, you are. You and only you! Don’t doubt it for a minute. I sent an email to Mr Bats this morning expressing my concern for all the end of year parties he’s already been to and planning on going to over the next week. I told him to be watchful of his health as he loves a good ale or six. We’re still in contact after all these years and I still try and organise his life from afar. He loves it. The bossier I was the more he always needed…

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