The Same Team

I like Atsushi because he keeps up a good pace, but in a measured and safe way. Back when I started a year ago, whenever I tried to hurry, I would get sloppy, and when carrying four-meter steel pipes weighing 15kg each, would lose my sense of where the ends were, and hit things. I had been working for less than ten days when I had to carry such pipes from the truck through a succession of narrow areas into the garden where we were erecting scaffolding. There was a guy Terui, younger than me but more experience – he rushed me. Atsushi told him “Don’t rush him. He’ll hit things.” I liked this – it was a simple statement of fact. He wasn’t defending me to the other guy, nor was he reprimanding me for my lack of skill. It was a simple assessment of where I was at, how much he could safely squeeze from me, and that we were all part of the same team.

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