It’s true that you don’t know what you have until you lose it. This is not some cheesy line over a lost relationship, this is the sentiment of employees and workers who never got to say their proper goodbyes for their office buildings and colleagues.
The second week of March brought with it a surprise: Luzon-wide work-from-home arrangements for companies due to the health and safety measures against COVID-19. Before this quarantine, employees were requesting for a 4-day workweek, but now that we’ve got a 30-day free work-from-home trial, it’s making everyone realize a few things. Such as how much we love working in an office environment, for example.
Yes, we know that the world is dealing with problems far greater than these feelings, but let’s take a few minutes and acknowledge these feelings anyway, cause they’re still valid. Here are just 8 of the few things we miss about our offices:
Free air conditioning
It’s a miracle the weather isn’t warmer than we’re used to this time of the month but then again, maybe we’re speaking too soon. Even if we had to sometimes bundle up like it’s winter and we feel like we might get frostbite from the cold, we can’t help but miss the precious office aircon. It was there even when we didn’t want it to be, tirelessly working to give us a comfortable environment and it was free (for us employees, anyway). Now we’re just getting anxious over our mounting electricity bills.
Free-flowing coffee in the pantry (or your daily morning coffee shop run)
At the office, there’s a freshly brewed pot of coffee at any time of day and if that wasn’t enough, you always had the option to visit your favorite coffee shops. Oh, how we miss the morning coffee run to Starbucks / Tim Hortons / etc. Sure, you can call for deliveries but it isn’t the same being enveloped in the smell of coffee beans the moment you enter a café.
Since your siblings and your parents are all home, the internet is ‘clogged.’ Everybody needs to work and to attend their online classes and the weight of the deadlines and requirements are too much for your 5 Mbps internet. At least it made you realize one thing: as soon as this quarantine is over, you’ll beg your parents to change your service provider.
Our office desks where we could actually concentrate on working
Just a few days into the official quarantine and we already miss our desks, a designated ~peaceful~ space where we could work in peace. Now it’s a challenge looking for that perfect spot in the house that’s quiet enough, cool enough, or inspiring enough. Plus, it’s hard to get your game face on when your bed is right there, beckoning you to take a nap the entire day.
Lunch bonding with your favorite colleagues
If there’s an hour we’re always looking forward to at work, it would be Lunch Hour. You’re allowed to leave your desk and wander outside with your colleagues, choose a restaurant to eat in if you can afford to, or simply eat in the pantry. Lunchtimes equal destress sessions with your favorite colleagues laughing about random topics and (yes) ranting about your workload.
Heck, we miss our officemates!
For a month (or perhaps longer, pero sana hindi), we won’t see the people we work with daily — even the ones we don’t like. Admit it, don’t you miss that one annoying officemate? Another downside of a work-from-home setup is it’s a challenge to throw ideas back and forth online or through calls. Our siblings are okay substitutes, but sometimes they don’t completely understand the nature of our work. The hope remains that if we adhere to this quarantine, things might go back to normal in a few weeks.
The office crush
Can you believe you’re going to have to endure a month of not seeing the office cutie? The person who is sometimes the reason you get out of bed and go to work? If you knew last week was the last time in a long time before you would see them again, what would’ve you done differently? Maybe this is your opportunity to hit them up on Messenger and ask how they’re doing.
The rush of office work
The sheer energy of people working together to accomplish a deadline, rant to each other, or just exist as employees is something that’s missing in a work-from-home set-up. Now you’re reduced to phone calls to complain about that one particular client that annoys you. At home, you’re also forced to practice discipline so you won’t end up unproductive and it’s a challenge, especially if you’re easily distracted.
Of course, these are small prices to pay for the safety of the nation. At the end of the day, it’s clear what we need to do as Filipinos: stay at home to prevent virus spread and practice proper hygiene. These measures ensure we won’t get infected by the disease and if all goes well, after a month, we’ll be happily back in our office chairs gossiping with our colleagues once again.
How’s working from home so far?