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Our company has been in a retrenchment frenzy since the pandemic started. Our human resource department calls the employees that are about to be retrenched and tell them to go to a certain location, whether in the office or outside of the office but in a private area. The giving out of last pay checks are usually scheduled on a Friday.
When I received a call from our Finance director last September 21 that I am invited to a dinner with our Chief Executive Officer on Friday, September 24, I started to feel the apprehension that I might be receiving a check for my last pay or separation pay.
I cannot understand my feeling at all. I kept on thinking that this might be what those retrenched people were feeling.
I thought I was the only one who feels this but it seems that some managers who got the call were also feeling the same.
Another thing that confirms my apprehension is that my boss has not replied to me when I sent the payroll computations for her approval. Usually she replied within the day or the following day. But two days had passed and yet I have not received an email from her.
I was really getting worried already so I started computing my retirement benefit. Yes, your read it right, retirement. This is because, based on the past retrenchments, employees who are qualified for an early retirement and are included in the retrenchments were given their retirement benefit instead of a one month in lieu and separation pay. Being in the company of twenty six years, I am entitled to a retirement benefit.
After my computation, I thought to myself that I should not be worried if I will be part of the retrenched employees, I can still send my two kids to school.
This feeling of apprehension really made me feel down. I was not able to write an article as nothing enters my mind but the event that is about to happen.
Friday has arrived. I had meetings after meetings. We were told to be at the venue by four in the afternoon. Three thirty and I am still at home attending an online meeting. I really am not in a hurry to be at the venue.
When I arrived there, many cars were already parked. I saw the general manager of one of the affiliates. My apprehension starts to evaporate little by little. The more so when I reached the green house, as they call the venue, all the managers from different affiliates were there, some were having drinks already.
It was really what they call it at all: Dinner with the CEO.
My apprehension was replaced with glee.
Our CEO called us for dinner and purely for dinner, meaning good food and relaxation. He just told us to mingle as it was the first time we had that gathering since the pandemic.
Our venue was a newly constructed outdoor open building. That is why he called us there to give comments on how to improve the venue.
Another thing that he wants us to observe and comment is the food as the chef is relatively new.
The food was good but quite salty for my taste. I thought I was the only one who observed it but it seems our CEO also observed it. I should know as he sat beside me during dinner and he commented about it.
Even the dessert, though sweet but you still can taste the saltiness in it.
Over all, it was a pleasant night, full of food, singing and dancing. I just hope no one there was an asymptomatic with the virus as during dinner we have to remove our mask.
Thank you for sympathizing with me on my apprehensive days and joining me in my glee in the end.