The phone alarm goes off three times on the black one drawer nightstand before a hand clamps over it. A thumb slides in the right direction, silencing the obnoxious ring. If it weren’t for her jitters, the tainted dark room from the lack of sun would’ve kept her laying still. Oh how she missed the seasons of spring and summer of the golden sun shimmering her bedroom with brightness. Thankfully the baby blue walls didn’t add to the darkness that winter brought. She really wanted 10 extra minutes (like she does most mornings) but she had a mountain to climb.
Instead of hiking boots, granola bars, and a large water bottle, she needed a portfolio holder, black Louboutin heels, and her A-game to tackle this mountain.
She connected her phone to the wireless Bluetooth speaker standing on the left corner of the drawer, put on a playlist suited for the occasion then hopped in the shower. While jamming out to the music, she paid close attention to when each song ended and estimated how long things took.
Four songs later, she’s standing in front of her lighted vanity mirror in her icy blue robe. She envisioned the hairstyle she was going for and grabbed her volumizing moose and blow dryer from the hair care basket. About 15 minutes later, she lightly scrunches her hair while squirting spray gel to keep her waves intact. Her red velvet colored waves stopped a couple inches below her shoulders and she fluffed her hair to loosen it up. Then, she carefully cupped the top half of her hair and pulled it back. Splitting the top half into two, she braided them together in the middle. Her small braid kept a good grip when she pulled it to test its strength. She then gently intertwined her fingers with the bottom half of her hair and played around with her loose waves. For final touches, she applies a couple squirts of hairspray.
Next is makeup. She glances over at her phone to check the time.
After reading a dozen articles informing her of what to apply for this special occasion it’s decided that the more natural look would be best—easy on the eye-shadow, make sure the lashes aren’t crumbled looking, no cat-eyes, and it’s okay to use a touch of blush. It’s also taken into consideration what wouldn’t make her skin look too pasty. Once the last lash is curled, she stares at herself momentarily in the mirror. Her hazel colored eyes glisten with confidence. She puckers her full lips and blows herself a kiss.
The music continues to play as she strolls over to her already picked out outfit: a black pencil skirt, a plain white blouse, a sharp black blazer, and her heels. To complete the outfit, she put on diamond stud earrings.
Again, her eyes glance at the time.
An hour and half left until her A-game makes an appearance.
She stood by the bedroom door, mentally preparing a list of what’s next. She needs to eat breakfast, double check everything is in her portfolio holder, brush her teeth again, and make sure her ride gets there early.
Although she put everything together last night, her hands tugged at the zipper unfolding the holder. In one pocket contained multiple print copies of her resume and other necessary documents related to her experience while another pocket had her wallet, extra paper, and pens and pencils.
A check appears in her head and she heads downstairs with the holder into the kitchen.
Two scrambled eggs, a small glass of orange juice, and a banana are the choice of the day. She invested herself in one of her favorite magazines while consuming her meal. She finished breakfast with a full glass of water and put her dirty dish in the sink. She tossed the banana peel in the trash and raced upstairs to brush her teeth.
The brush rapidly moved against her teeth and tongue and with one hand, she prepared a cup of mouthwash. Two more checks go off in her head.
A bit of sweat formed on her facial skin from the intensity of the brushing and she almost panicked. To quickly ease her nerves, she positioned herself in prayer form and whispered ‘you got this’ three times in a row.
She gave herself a nod in the mirror then went back downstairs to get her wool coat and gloves. The weather app predicted harsh winds and temperatures in the low 20s. Without further thinking, she bolted into her bedroom and switched the pencil skirt for black dress pants with silver buttons.
Another check went off. She went back downstairs for the final time and took a water bottle out of the fridge. She packed it in her holder then called an Uber.
The Uber took six minutes to get to her apartment. Her eyes glanced at her clock every couple seconds as she decided to risk it and take pool.
The map determined she’d get there at 8:35 if the driver didn’t pick up too many people. She politely engaged with her driver whenever he spoke but hoped he’d pay more attention to the other future riders because she needed this time for last minute prepping.
She did her research. She had her parent’s help her out. She even had her roommate predict questions that could come up in conversation.
Most of her felt ecstatic and self-assured yet it wasn’t enough. Right now she was at 85% and soon to be 80% if she didn’t arrive to her destination on time.
She buried herself in her phone, rereading the prep notes. She debated whether it was a good idea to put in her headphones. It could give the driver the hint but she didn’t want to come across as rude.
Knots started to form in her stomach so she took a sip of water. She slouched in her seat to get comfortable and gently shut her eyes. She imagined her parents and friends with overjoyed faces saying congratulations for tackling the mountain.
The mountain now appeared as a mere bump in the ground that didn’t require much effort to get over.
The knots died down and a warm, comforting feeling emerged throughout her body. She opened her eyes, put her headphones away and mentally went over the basics in her head again.
The driver dropped her off at the corner of where the building stood. She told her driver to have a good day as she got out of the car.
Her heart pounded like a drum beat and her throat grew dry but she shook her head no, mentally saying that this wasn’t the time or place to get this way. Approaching the receptionist, she put on her kindest smile and briefly introduced herself.
The receptionist flashed a grin and directed her to sit down on one of the chairs.
While time went by, she remembered not to look at the clock or her phone. She adjusted her posture and made sure not to cross her legs. She pulled out one copy of her resume and examined it. She asked the receptionist how her morning went so far and the receptionist responded short but looked her way.
A tall, lean woman wearing a business suit and thick glasses walked into the room.
“Ms. Alicia Baresi?” The woman inquired, staring down attentively at the young woman sitting on the chair.
The young woman stood up, proudly smiled and extended her hand.
“Hello, I’m Ms. Baresi. It’s nice to meet you. ”