Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Kawasaki Tennessee

Today is Jonathon's last day at Kawasaki Tennessee.  It's hard to believe that we came here 9 1/2 years ago.  Jonathon was hired as a temp. translator.  He was the third person to be hired.  And as of today the longest person at the company (in America.)  He knows just about everything about the plant.  He was there when they bought the land and built the building.  When they expanded the building and when they bought the second building.  He has moved from being a temporary translator to Production control / IT manager.  

In the early days they all had to wear these lovely uniforms.

One of the best parts of this job was that Jonathon got to use a little bit of all of his talents.  He loved using his Japanese every day.  One of his great loves is Japan.  Its people, culture, food, everything.  Working at Kawasaki kept him close and personal with the land he loved so much.  Working with the computers at work kept his job interesting and his brain fresh.  There have been MANY days when he would come home banging his head over some computer problem that wasn't working like he wanted it too.  There were several nights when I would call asking him if he was coming home tonight, but he couldn't leave because once things started happening and he was on a roll with a project pieces started to fit together and he would come home tired, but radiant. Jonathon also got to use a little of his art skills at work.  I'm sure that they really had to twist his arm, but he agreed to design several t-shirts over the years.  Those were some of his funnest days at work.  When he got to take a few hours and create.  A little bit of Jonathon will remain in the closets and drawers of the employees.  I think that will make him smile!

You can't see it very well, but this is one of the t-shirts he designed.

Most of the time, during most of the day at Kawasaki Jonathon sat at a desk, or worked on someones computer, but he loved the times when he would get to be out on the floor.  I think he secretly wished he could joy ride in the fork lift.  He's made friends with so many of the floor workers.  He would come home and tell me about so and so and the conversations they would have.  His time on the floor helped balance the sitting and solidarity that working in IT is.

He does look a little like "Bob the builder" don't you think?

You can tell this picture is really old.  1. the cubical walls are EMPTY! 2. Check out that monitor!  Compare it with the one below!

Like all Computer guys, Jonathon loves shopping and buying computers.  Since having a large family means that any extra $$ we have goes for soccer shoes and piano lessons Jonathon doesn't get to buy the latest and greatest for himself.  BUT, he's sure had fun buying computers for work!  Each of the computers at Kawasaki has been personalized and prepped by Jonathon.  (I have a feeling they don't even know yet how much they will miss the little things like this that he does.  Truth be told though, he will miss it too.  A lot.)

Jonathon today.  Check out the size of that Monitor!  He is working in one of the conference rooms trying to get everything ready to pass off to the consulting guy.  How do you sum up 9 1/2 years in a few days?

There have been days, you know the ones!  Where the only thing that has kept Jonathon from quitting is knowing that he is responsible for us at home.  Kawasaki hasn't been the perfect job, but it's been a really good one.  We are so grateful for the past almost 10 years.  


Tony and Ann said...

Wow! Didn't realize he was done already. Got a lot to do in the next couple weeks! Good luck!

Kozue Macmichael said...

Thank you for posting this Sarah! I enjoyed reading about Jonathon's work! You have nice pictures of him to tell the story of last 10 yrs... Made me want to take more pictures of my husband at work :) Best of luck with the moving!

Julie L said...

Good Luck with everything! We're excited that you're going to be a little closer to home but I'm guessing you're going to be leaving a huge hunk of heart in Tennessee as well. Great post. We take our jobs and the community that comes with them so much for granted.

Julie L said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Julie L said...

(It was the Captcha's fault! And look - now you've got three comments for the cost of one, hahaha)

Seth Johnson said...

Fun post. I hope there will be more Leaving TN posts. How bittersweet. And I am not sure there is such thing as a perfect job. Motherhood is the best one I can think of and even that has it's days so to have a really good job for a decade is a blessing. I hope the next one is even closer to perfect and since it is even closer to family I suspect that it will be. Good Luck!

Marie aka Grams said...

What a beautiful post and tribute to Jonathon. I'm sure it is bittersweet both leaving and coming. I admire the courage you both have in trekking across the country to find a new adventure in an unknown land. We'll be happy to have you closer. xoxo

Jeff Paar said...

Hello. I just happened upon this website. I'm Jeff Paar, the current IT manager at Kawasaki TN. I took over from Rusty Easter who took over from Jonathan. We're still using some of Jonathan's Excel solutions. We've grown quite a bit even in the past 3 years since I started. Production and defect data are now being captured in a MySQL database using a asp.net front end. New computers, new servers, new staff. Jonathan might now recognize the place now!

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