Note:

This blog is now retired. My new site is at: Predictably Irrational.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Not A Happy Camper

Last year, we decided to try a 'personal camp counselor' for the summer break, rather than put CJ in summer camp. For the most part, CJ did not enjoy summer camps and for a few of the ones we tried, the camp didn't seem so personable.

So we put an ad out and found a wonderful person who is now a great friend. She was on break before heading out to her first job after graduation and hung out with the girls all summer, at the pool, the mall, the house, where ever. It was a great experience for all of us.

We struggled to find someone last year, however. I feel very lucky with who we found because I received so many people interested but then tell me at the end that they found other positions elsewhere. I was down to the wire.

This year, I knew I had to get on the ball to get someone for the summer. My current babysitters were busy: one is still in school and the other was preparing for her own first job. I found two postings for summer child care and contacted both.

They were both impressive on paper. I was really impressed when one of them, after answering my questions, wrote back with questions of her own. We had both come over and while the girls clicked with both ladies, Tim and I liked one of them the most.

So I did a very poor job of e-mailing the other girl back. I meant to tell her, the day after meeting her, that we had decided on someone else.

I did e-mail my other babysitter -- the one I thought would be unavailable over the summer -- that we were going with someone else. We had already offered the position when we found out that our other one was actually going to be around for the summer.

But for some reason, I let this one go.

So Friday, I got an e-mail from the young lady asking when she was going to start. :( I felt soooo bad that I had to answer her with 'I'm so sorry. We went with another girl. My girls really like you. Hope you have a great summer.' Well, something to that effect.

I guess that wasn't enough for her, as she wrote back with a stern tone, using my first name instead of Hi.

To my understanding, I thought I was going to start watching your girls after I got back into town. I denied 2 other jobs because I thought that we had an agreement. It would have been nice to let me know that you were looking at other people. Now the 2 jobs I could have had are already taken.


I don't know if I should reply back with another apology or leave it alone. I'm leaning toward the latter.

I forget that these are young minds? Not used to rejection? Not used to the fact that you don't just 'get' things by asking or offering?

I mean, what I really want to say is: 'We had to meet you first. We had to see how we all clicked and while my children thought you were nice, my husband and I did not feel you were the best choice.'

Or, 'There was no agreement about anything. We discussed what your responsibilities would be if we hired you.'

Or, 'You shouldn't assume you are the only person we would be talking to. My children are the most important people in the world. We are very careful about the choices we make in who watches are children.'

She was a nice girl. She is? But the snit of an e-mail has put her off my list. What if the one we hired doesn't work out? Did she think about not burning her bridge? Of course not. It's pretty evident that she has a lot of growing up to do and our instincts were right on the money.

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