There are a lot of layers to running a little business and the bush flying business has plenty of its own. The flying is the good part. Some days the layers just pile on, even out here at the halcyon home base of Hoarfrost River Huskies Ltd. The phone rings. I am still surprised by that, every single time. “What, a phone?” “Ringing? Here?” The inbox on the confuser screen lights up, or the goofy thing dings or chimes. (They should add some blood-curdling moans or some heartfelt wailing in there as options to choose from.) Kristen can tell I am about to snap. My old clay pipe and pouch of tobacco come out, and I puff and chomp and pound on the keypad.
I wish that I could read and understand a financial statement, an avionics schematic, comprehend the meaning of “subrogation” in an insurance document, and nimbly edit and “format” a document in Microsoft Word. Someone, somewhere, can do all those things handily, smoothly, and make it all look as easy as a simple takeoff in a trusty aeroplane on a blue sky day, from a little grass strip with the breeze right down the pipe. I tip my hat to them, wherever they are.
Oh and then there are the “regulatory” layers, lumped under capital-G Government for the sake of brevity, roiling and churning away in all the provinces of their burgeoning empire. I shall desist from delving further, lest I offend, and offer this:
To My Orwellian Pen-Pals
This evening I sit and look north.
Down-sloping curve of igneous rock,
and above it,
Sitting here alone
I think of all those rank and filers in their rabbit warren cubicles,
all my distant pen-pals at the CRA, the CTA, TC, PC, and GNWT,
their alphabet soup of acronym noodles
gone all soggy and cold.
That diligent legion that has again,
all unbeknownst to each other,
banded together in a ragtag assault,
and made off with far too much of this precious day.
I can only hope,
after our long silly march around the matters at hand,
this niggling parade of requests, revisions, remittances, and reply-alls,
this petty parody of a working day well spent,
I can only hope that they, too,
have all found a quiet place to sit
at curve of rock
and dome of sky.
Good night. Sleep tight.
(“stay safe!” “best regards!” “talk soon!”)