In time, as I progressed through the ranks and I had proven myself to the officers and members of the department, my opinion began to matter. Once I had firmly implanted myself into the ways of the CPVFD, the knowledge I brought from the WLFC became relevant. I am proud to say that some ideas that were born in little ‘ol West Lawn Borough were incorporated into programs in the City of College Park. Eventually I was permitted to say “Back home, we…”, but not before I learned why I couldn’t as the new guy in the house.
I learned to understand patience, and tolerance for others opinions. I realized that I was the new guy in town, not the organization. They had been hosin’ and truckin’ for decades before the mere consideration of my existence. Despite how smart I thought I was, I thankfully learned that others may be smarter. The humbling experience of being forced to forget the past and accept the present was a valuable lesson that now, makes all the sense in the world.
This is a lesson that I have applied numerous times in my life. As the new guy, I always take the time to get to know the people and the system that is in place, giving them every opportunity to show me what is already in place. This open-mindedness has helped me learn quite a bit about organizational philosophies as well as individual capabilities. I only wish others in my recent past would have learned the same lesson of respect that the CPVFD taught me. THAT story, I will save for another time...
Happy Thanksgiving, everybody. Enjoy a safe and wonderful time with your family and friends as we celebrate of the "things" we have in life .