As always, a reminder that good/bad systems and individuals exist everywhere. I believe Reno is unique and this is a blog/book memoir of my experiences as they relate to seniors. After my time in Wells Fargo, I will cover the world of Elder Care, including some facts peculiar to Reno that include:
- Federal money used for personal gain
- Parolees used as cheap labor for caregiving
- Nevada’s Adult Care Centers efforts to squash competition
- A care system abused
- Reno’s Alzheimer’s Association as a franchise: what that means
… and more.
Wells Fargo, Reno NV – Northwest Branch
Janie had found the smoking gun, and being a good, honest woman, demanded action. For a few days after discovering the boxes of hidden documents, things seemed to take on a life of their own. Shirley had mandated that we work on our own time after closing and call those customers whose CD accounts were terming out. I was given a list of people to call. Shirley wanted to see the results of my efforts, how many appointments I’d made for “informing people.”
The list was on my desk, as appealing as a root canal. As the minutes ticked down to the end of the day, I played a few scenarios in my head: “Hi, this is Wells, (screw-job) Fargo, I’m calling as the banker (vampire) of your branch. I understand that you have a CD (safe money) expiring, and wanted to talk (ow-they’re twisting my arm–got a tourniquet?) “We’ll have some coffee, (Vaseline for you) and chat.”
Jane had been grim all day. During another lunch period when Shirley and Joni had retreated to parts unknown, she stopped at my desk.
“Tonster,” she said, “what’s the plan?”
I stood up, looked over the wall of my cubicle for spies. The lead teller Shirley had brought in, Pam, seemed very curious about my opinions, especially about Wells. “Isn’t this a great place, most of the time? How do you sell those credit cards?” Poor Pam. Married to a part-time County sheriff, she came in once a week with her eyes wet, and too much pancake around her cheeks. I was sure her husband terrorized her on a weekly basis, and while I felt bad for her, I felt even worse for my own wife’s cancer battle.
But the coast was clear. Janie’s eyes drilled into mine.
“Look,” I began, “you don’t have to deal with these crooks. It’s not in you. Your husband’s got a good gig and you can do better.”
“I’m looking,” she said.
“Me too. I’m going to see if Alamo will let me work nights.”
Janie did the math. “Sixteen hours a day? You wanna do that?”
I shrugged. “No choice. Shirley, Joni, they know about Alex and Janelle’s crap. And we’ve told her about all the accounts we’ve been fixing — what’s she done? Nothing. We’ve already signed our death warrant. In sales you either sign up for the scam, or move on. They don’t want reformers.”
Janie leaned back. Many times she wore long denim skirts, a plaid blouse tucked in. Sometimes I thought I was talking to Lassie’s TV mom, and it was a comfort. Good people, good women especially existed outside of my small family circle.
“I told Shirley about the box,” said Jane.
“How’d that go over?”
“Shirley said, ‘I told Joni we never should’ve hired you.'”
“Really?” I said. “Too honest for ’em, eh?”
Jane smiled. An answer wasn’t required.