Chapter 17 – Staff members
Western District Branch Bureau, General Affairs Department.
Today was Dong Xuebing’s official first day of work. His desk was by a window in a corner. Sun shone brightly on his desk through the window’s panels. It was warm and bright. Pulling the curtains had helped a bit. Directly opposite of Dong Xuebing was Zhuang Zhi’s desk. They were facing each other. In the middle, there were 2 17in monitors and a table calendar separating them.
In the office, other than Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi, the rest of the staffs were very busy.
A cheerful girl standing at the photocopier machine was organizing some documents. She said without raising her head: “Guo Shunfa, I have too many things to do. Help me photocopy some documents. The Bureau needs them urgently.”
Guo Shunfa, in his late 20s, was busily typing on his keyboard: “I am also very busy. Ask someone else to help you.”
The oldest staff in the office, Old Yan was sitting at his desk reading the newspapers. He does not have any intention to offer his help.
Guo Panwei, who looks like a monkey, was looking down, writing something. He shouted: “Let me finish writing this and I will be there.”
The woman, named Changjuan, was holding up a small mirror drawing her eyebrows.
Dong Xuebing looked around and walked over. “Sister Tan, let me help.”
“Ok.” Tan Limei passed a stack of documents to Dong Xuebing and said: “You know how to photocopy? Place the documents here along this line and press that big button. Remember its single side and I need 4 sets. Staple them when it's ready. Oh, what did you call me just now? Sister Tan? Haha…… Don’t call me that. I attended school early and had only just graduated one year ago. I might even be younger than you and Zhuang Zhi.”
“I will also help.” Zhuang Zhi walked over.
Tan Limei casually said: “Fine. One of you photocopy and the other staple. Better be quick. The Leader is waiting.”
While waiting for the copier to print the documents, Zhuang Zhi clumsily stapled the stacks of papers.
When Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi finished with the documents, Guo Panwei, who had been looking down, and Changjuan who was drawing her eyebrows, stood up and said at the same time: “I will send the documents over.” Both looked at each other, and Changjuan smiled seductively: “I will send the documents to the Political Section and the Confidential Department. You can send the documents to the Bureau Chief.” They arranged the documents and Guo Panwei straighten his shirt, while Changjuan touched up her makeup. After that, both of them walked out of the office with the papers at the same time.
Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi were puzzled.
Tan Limei was used to this and grumbled behind their back: “Lazing around at work all the time and only rushed forward when there is a chance to meet the leaders. Hmph!”
Dong Xuebing was new and does not know the characters of the people in the office. He smiled and did not say anything.
Suddenly Guo Shunjie waved: “Xiao Dong, Xiao Sun, come over here.”
Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi walked over: “Yes?”
“Create one more copy for these tables. Do you know Excel? Just use the same format and recreate a table. The data you can get from this Word document. Copy and paste will do. Don’t paste into the wrong table. I need this file before noon. Once completed, print it out.” Guo Shunjie spoke like a leader, and his instructions were clear. When Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi were creating the table, he was free and was drinking tea and surfing net. He was reading some aquarium fish forum.
Dong Xuebing and Zhuang Zhi completed their task. Guo Shunjie looked at the printout and nodded. “Hmmm… Good.”
Tan Limei joked: “Leader Guo, it is lunchtime now. Can we go for lunch?”
Guo Shunjie did not get angry and laughed: “I am not a leader yet. Stop poking fun at me.”
Guo Panwei looked at his watch and took his clutch bag: “I will be going to the hospital to visit Chief Zhou.” He left.
Changjuan also stood up: “I will not be eating at the cafeteria. Someone is treating me for lunch.”
“Xiao Dong, Xiao Sun.” Old Yan, who did not speak a single word the whole morning, smiled to them both: “You still have not bought the lunch tickets? Come, let’s go. Both of you can use my tickets first.”
Dong Xuebing hurriedly waved his hand. “No need, no need. Thank you. Both of us can eat outside.”
Zhuang Zhi also said: “Yes, yes. Thank you.”
Tan Limei said: “There is nothing good to eat outside. Don’t think our cafeteria here is small. The food is delicious. Come, let’s go. Old Yan, I will bring them to the cafeteria, and they will use my lunch tickets.”
Old Yan smiled at her: “Fine. You, youngsters, should get together more. These two young men seem quite hardworking.”
Tan Limei had average looks, but she was very talkative. She was able to chat with anyone and dares to say everything. During lunch in the cafeteria, located on the northern side of the compound, she told them all sorts of gossips.
But thanks to her, Dong Xuebing learned a lot about this office.
In other agencies, the General Affairs Department and the administrative office were the same things. But as the State Security was a particular unit, there were many confidential documents. This was why the General Affairs Department here had a separate office to handle meeting materials, writing and editing Leaders’ speeches, transferring of files, and other miscellaneous stuff. The Chief of this office was Deputy Divisional Chief rank, and he does not really care about the work here. He let his Deputy Chief Zhou, take charge of everything in the office. Zhou Changchun was in his 50s, and his health was not very good. He often needs to take sick leaves.
Under Deputy Chief Zhou, were the staff members like them.
Old Yan was the most senior in the office. But many years ago, he had offended a leader from City’s State Security Bureau and could not be promoted. He was now in his 50s and was still a staff member, despite almost reaching his retirement age. He had also got over it. He just comes to work and read the newspaper the whole day. He will not do any work and does not care about everything.
Guo Panwei was an ambitious person. He likes to hang around the leaders bootlicking, and he knows most of the leaders.
Guo Shunjie had someone in the Bureau. Hearsay, the District Director / Political Commissar, was good friends with his father. This was why, other than Deputy Chief Zhou, Guo Shunjie does not listen or care about anyone else. He thinks he was the “biggest” among the staff members.
Changjuan in her 30s. Although her looks were average, she likes to doll up and flirts with the leaders. She looks like she was hoping to be some leaders’ mistress.
Tan Limei was the only person in the office that does actual work. She handles almost all the documents in the office.
That’s the situation in this office.
Offices…… were complicated……