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S/O 4 minutes late - Called out when early?

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Oopsie's thread reminded me of something that happened a little while ago and I thought I'd offer it for discussion.

A while ago I was going to a course for work in MajorCity a couple of hours away from where I live. The course was scheduled to start at 9am so I looked up trains and planned to arrive about 15 minutes before then. As happens at times, over 10 minutes of that 15 minutes was eaten up because although I arrived at the venue on time there was some difficulty and confusion finding my specific course (there were a LOT on that day) and I was directed in about 3 different directions. I arrived at the course before just 9 to find everyone else already there and seated.

The instructor said "Finally! We've got everyone here and can start!" It's hard to describe his tone of voice but it was definitely a "At last! I've been waiting!" sort of tone. I simply looked at my watch and said "By my watch I've still got a few minutes", signed in and sat down. Note that I was seated, unpacked and ready to go before 9.

So what do ehellions think? I was arriving later than I would have liked, but things happen and I had left extra time for them to happen in so I thought I was all good and he was a bit rude. I've had other people say though that since everyone was there and they were 'waiting' for me I was in the wrong.

I don't see how you can be in the wrong - you were not only on time, you were early.  Maybe the instructor was just overanxious to get things going.  But yeah, a "Finally!" in that context is surprising.

You weren't wrong at all, Iris.  You handled the situation perfectly. 

Nine o'clock is nine o'clock.  The instructor was very rude.   Even if you had walked in a few minutes late, his remark would still have been totally out of line.  You are an adult, and the presumption should be that you were unavoidably detained. 

If you had walked in late he should have just continued his lesson as he walked over to your seat and given you the materials.  Many instructors say "welcome" with a big smile to latecomers, but some people might be embarrassed by the extra attention.

I once had something a bit similar happen to me when I had to go to an out of town course that I had to do for my job.  I don't remember why, but I had a terrible, convoluted, stress filled morning and a long drive, and I was sick with something or other besides.

I was late, and I tried to come in quietly and unobtrusively.  The instructor saw me and made some sort of snarky remark in front of the class.  I literally saw red but didn't say anything to him. 

Instead, I just sat and took notes and listened for the whole day without looking up or looking at him.  At some point he tried to come over and make a comment to me when we were doing group work, and I ignored him.

I'm sure that my behavior would not be ehell approved, but hey - I was young and clueless.  Actually, several of the ehell phrases could have diffused the initial situation. 


--- Quote ---I've had other people say though that since everyone was there and they were 'waiting' for me I was in the wrong.
--- End quote ---

How could you possibly know what time everyone else would be "waiting" for you? They could have all got there at 7:30 AM but if the course starts at 9, it still starts at 9, not the time everyone else arbitrarily decided to get there.

If someone wanted you there by 8:45, then they should have SAID 8:45.

I think your answer was perfect and to the point.

9 is 9.


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