Something about it being a holiday (and one that we aren’t really taking) makes me want to talk about how things work on a daily basis here at RH. If you’re interested, read on.
As you might expect, Reconstructing History isn’t like most corporate offices. Primarily that is because it is in our house — 80% of our house if you ask the Federal Government. Anyone who has ever visited our house can vouch for that!
The other way in which Reconstructing History diverges from most other corporate offices is that Bob and I work as partners, not just husband and wife. While Bob has been an essential part of RH since the beginning, he wasn’t an actual partner until late 2006 and didn’t come to work for us full time until 1 April of this year.
So we don’t work like other corporations. Maybe you’ll find our day interesting…
- 6:00 am – 6:30 am — awakened by one of three “alarms”: Melody yawning loudly with intent, Leopold sticking his nose under the covers in search of a bare patch of skin, or Sebastian pacing on the hardwood — “tick tick tick tick, turn, tick tick tick tick, repeat”
- 6:30 am – 7:00 am — take dogs out and feed them. This is much less calm than it sounds. The cachophony of three 75 lb plus dogs leaping down a narrow hardwood hallway is enough to wake the neighbours, even though none of them bark. However, as soon as we get downstairs, these three array themselves on various couches and have to be woken up and reminded that they wanted to go out. This never fails to amaze us. They can be so demanding when we want to sleep in, but as soon as they get downstairs they seem to forget their bladders entirely.
- 7:00 am – 7:30 am — check email and eat breakfast while watching the morning news on BBC World
- 7:30 am – 8:00 am — walk down by the canal. This also serves as our early morning team meeting. We typically plan the business day on this walk
- 8:00 am – 12:00 pm — Bob goes upstairs to the office to print and fold patterns and pack orders. I stay downstairs and write, research, and work on new product development. I am assisted by the rthymic snoring of hounds.
- 9:00 am – 11:00 am — UPS shows up. Deliver anything received for orders to Bob upstairs.
- 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm — Lunch. This time of year, that means a picnic.
- 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm — Answer phone calls and emails from customers. I don’t know why, but the bulk of calls we get are in the afternoon hours. I also prefer to write between the hours of 3pm and 5pm. This does not always work out harmoniously. And sometimes dogs get it into their heads that we need to take them on a walk in the afternoon. This doesn’t happen in the winter at all. But as soon as Spring comes, around 3:30pm, any move I make will be greeted by leaping and prancing hounds. Everyday Sebastian at least goes for a walk because he’s old and needs the exercise to keep his muscle tone. On rainy days, the other two stay in. Melody mutilates her hedgehog for fun and Leo stays out of her way, praying that he’s not next.
- 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm — Fedex shows up
- 6:00 pm — Stop answering phones. Start dinner.
If we have a big wholesale order to print, we often continue folding and packing patterns after dinner. And if it’s a really big order, we will run the printer all night. Also, if I’m producing a new pattern, I will continue working after dinner. Like all writers, I write when the words come and don’t stop until either they stop or I am finished. So my workday can be a very open-ended thing. But perhaps this will explain why I’m so adamant about no phone calls after 6pm.
And that’s a day in the life here at RH. Hope you enjoyed the journey. Now we have to go for our walk. It’s a holiday and we’re behind schedule. But the dogs are asleep and it’s a good time to sneak out…