Letter to the Teller with the Green & Blue Tie at Key Bank on 45th St.

Dear Teller with the green and blue tie at Key Bank on 45th St.  in Wallingford (name unknown),

Hi and how are things these days? You may or may not remember me, but you have been on my mind since I steamed out of the bank on October 25th,  my deposit of $546.27 in 3 separate checks left at your station.   I was late, my fault not yours.   You said that it was only your 2nd day there, but understand, I had found myself faced with an empty carton of almond milk upon that morning, worn some especially scratchy socks,  and it was the 6th time in a row over the past month that I tried to make a deposit at one of your branches where the machine had broken down, the computer had misread  a check or someone’s human hands had punched in inaccurate numbers elongating my time at the window by at least 74 extra seconds with tellers on Brooklyn Avenue,  on 34th St, and yes, also others at your 45th St. branch, I’m afraid to say.  FYI - you are not the only employee there who has appeared mystified by the process of depositing checks. I was in a  kind of huff not to be tempered and clearly didn't have time to linger at your window.

 You smiled weakly as my checks ran rounds in the check machine, ignored by the bank system and you had to call the supervisor over as I audibly breathed my disgruntlement and grand disappointment with another less than perfect banking experience at your institution, knowing  you’d likely had no more than 20 transactions with customers over the past 48 hours.  

 “How was your 2nd day at work, honey?” I imagined your spouse inquiring when you made your way home that day.  And I could hear you sigh as you reported on the easily irked female customer, in a red sweater, fondling her car keys like worry beads at the counter, tapping her inpatient fingers on the counter and rolling her eyes as you struggled to punch check numbers into the computer.  I apologize.   I didn’t offer my usual smile of compassion and understanding nor did I warmly chirp “Oh, no problem  it’s your 2nd  day!  Don’t worry about it”,  like someone who practices yoga and listens to Pema Chodran tapes should have done.  I’m sorry.  I’m not usually like that, I swear.  You caught me on a bad day, feet itching, belly full of…gasp… rice milk, and at my wit’s end with Key Bank.  Do you like working there?

Your supervisor was very friendly, by the way, despite my icy “I’m tolerating this” kind of non-expression.   Did she admonish you at all?  Did she say anything about me?  Did the other tellers look upon you with disdain?  With empathy?   I doubt I’m the first customer who huffed and puffed her way through someone’s first or second day at work. Thank you for offering me a tootsie roll.  It was a nice gesture, even though it would have likely pulled out my dental fillings.

I haven't been back to your branch; you might realize I have been avoiding it as I know I'd be seen as the woman who ruined your first week on the job. I'd have to face the guilt I'd feel as you'd speedily whip through my deposit in less than 45 seconds now, hand me my cash back with a sparkle in your eye and a confident spring in your smile, afforded by 3 additional weeks on the job. You might not have asked me for my ID this time since you could easily identify me as “that impatient, unfeeling, un-lady like lady who  couldn’t get out of her own little super important world that sunny day on Oct 25th”.
 Please know that I have been extra nice over the past month to all the other tellers with whom I’ve interchanged, both from Key Bank and at the other bank I frequent, Alaska USA.   Yes, I do use another bank for my personal account and, to be truthful, really only joined Key Bank because I got $250 dollars to open a business account and I can’t refuse free cash.  You might be interested to know that they were offering Starburst at Alaska USA, so you’re on equal footing in your attempts to increase my visits to the dentist.
But I digress. I hope you’ll accept my apology and that your days at the bank have been free from computer mishaps and  irritable depositors.

I’ll probably see you soon, provided you are still employed there, (you didn’t get fired, did you?)  as I have a wad of checks that need depositing.  I’ll be sure to iron the wrinkles out of them so we don’t run into a similar situation when I return to your branch.

My best to you and your family who may still be cursing my name.

Mary Purdy 

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