The date – August 24, 1987. Ronald Reagan was President, George Bush (daddy) was VP, gas was around a $1/gallon, the DOW was at 1,939, Starship’s Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now was popular, and we were watching L.A. Law, Cosby, Cheers, and Family Ties on television. It was also the day I walked into the Corporate offices of HealthTrust, Inc. – the Hospital Company (HTI) for my first day of work. We didn’t have laptops or cell phones. Yes, I remember the implementation of e-mail and voice mail. Ancient, huh?
It was also my first job after college. I am also proud to say that 25 years later – I’m still here. Yes, the name on the front of the building has changed and the people sitting around me have changed. On that day 25 years ago, it would be five and a half years before I would meet the love of my life and another two and a half before I became a father. Pretty wild to think about.
When I started at HTI as a Staff I Auditor, I can’t say that I intended on having a career as an internal auditor or in healthcare. It was a job that paid real money, involved wearing a suit, carrying a briefcase (important!), and I got to travel. Life was definitely good!
Speaking of travel, I have gotten to see several places that I probably wouldn’t have ever seen if it wasn’t for the job. I have traveled from Seattle to Miami and several points in between. I’ve eaten seafood at Gladstone’s on Malibu Beach, watched two shuttle launches (one from the beach & the other from a plane), saw Kenny Rogers throw a perfect game in Arlington, saw the guys throw fish at Pike’s Place market, see John Denver at the Western Washington State Fair, visit an ostrich farm in Victoria, Texas, have authentic Cajun food at Mulates in Breaux Bridge, and eat my way (obviously) across the country. Speaking of that, here is a tip from a seasoned traveler – eat at local places at least once per trip. You can always eat at Outback, O’Charley’s, etc. Go where the locals go. It makes the trip memorable and you see what the town is all about.
People – people who need people. Sorry, ADD kicked in there. I have made so many friends through the years. There are some that I have met along the way that I still consider very close friends. Many were a part of the HTI family. The HTI family – that will require a completely separate blog. Some have died along the way, some have dropped off the face of the earth, and some still drift in and out of my world occasionally. Several though are still on my frequently dialed numbers in my phone. I often tell the newbies – never burn bridges; especially in Healthcare – in Nashville. There are several examples of folks crossing paths multiple times with multiple companies. Always good to keep up with folks.
As I close this blog, I am sitting in a different chair than I was 25 years ago. About two years ago I moved from Internal Audit to Corporate Accounting. Same company, just a different department. Still love my job. Today, I have a laptop, voicemail that I can listen to through my e-mail, and a cell phone that has hundreds of times more power than our first desktop computer. Times have definitely progressed and I hope I have as well. I also have a wife that has stuck by me for over 18 years (18 years…..) and two boys that rock and make my world. Life is indeed good.
A content Squire Z