Where do you like to be creative? What does one do to find a spark? Even though I just starting blogging, and recently took a little hiatus, I have been really happy to talk about getting back into writing! As I stated in my first post, there are so many topics that I want to explore. Some experiences were jaw dropping. And so far I haven’t needed to find a place to inspire my writing. I have written in my kitchen, at the airline gate, once was at my desk at work over a conference call that I didn’t need to be on (sh, don’t say anything), and now I find myself at one of the coffee shops in my neighborhood I’ve been wanting to visit. (The peppermint tea here is really impressive!)
“Place” isn’t just a spot where I rip a blog, of course. In my professional life, I like to be surrounded by a bit of familiarly, creativity, and like-minded folks—as I am sure many of you do. Working at EP was enriching for some of that for me. But, like I said, I found myself needing to push the industry forward and advocacy alone was not going to fulfill my goal.
I found myself on Amtrak heading from NYC to Baltimore for an interview with a roofing company. I was answering an ad for a horticultural professional who had some experience with green roofs. That sounded cool, I seemed qualified. A guy who looked a bit like Wilford Brimley was standing near a silver truck with a ladder in the parking lot once I arrived. This must be the guy. Actually, he wasn’t the guy I was interviewing with, he was just “doing his boss a favor” by picking me up.
When I walked into the Magco building for the first time, I thought, “Well, so this is what a roofing company looks like, huh.” I noticed steel partitioned cubicles, large drafting tables with large plans stacked on top, bulky computer monitors and wires openly exposed. The floors were cool- it was painted concrete and the duct work was exposed in the ceiling. I didn’t see people- and I saw that as a good sign- they must be out roofing, estimating, and managing some very important projects. My future boss’s office was huge, with large windows. File cabinets lined the walls, and there was actually a jade plant in the window. (Hey, I notice these things.)
This is where I met Mark Gaulin, with a serious and commanding personality, yet easy to talk to. The interview seemed fairly standard and I thought it was going well until he asked how many green roofs I had installed. I said, “A few. Maybe 5-7 that I had an active hand in, but that seems to be about as much experience anyone has in this emerging field.” Come to find out, Magco had only put down 2 or 3, so I was on point.
This was a good fit for me and Magco. They had some green jobs booked for the spring and had maintenance planned in the DC area. Magco had equipment, crews, and insurance – and knew how to get jobs done safely on the roof. That meant more green roof acres for me! And, they were part of some larger organization beyond the Mid-Atlantic. Mark didn’t promise me a national scope, but suggested there may be some travel from time to time. That was very enticing!
In search of a new professional place, I may have to give up my beloved NYC personal place. But, it was the decision I had to make.