Duck hide-and-seek spreads delight

Duck hide-and-seek spreads delight
Posted on 12/14/2022
Contract Associate Hydrogeologist Jen Dixon decorated the Water Resources tree with the ducks she found on her desk after her secret identity was revealed.

For weeks, Jen Dixon often felt like a sitting duck on the verge of discovery as she gingerly went about her mission at El Paso Water’s Hawkins Administration Building.

Dixon often roamed the hallways and climbed the stairwells, tucking tiny ducks into discreet places along the way for lucky EPWater employees to find. The contract Associate Hydrogeologist filled her pockets daily and quietly unloaded them, either before her shift began or during breaks.

The objective was simple – putting a smile on someone’s face.

“I heard people giggling in the hallway, saying ‘There’s another one,’” Dixon said. “It made me look forward to coming to work, and it was so much fun.”

Labor of love

“Ducktectives” around El Paso Water let Dixon know she was ID’d.Four hundred ducks later, she knew she was a dead duck when she recently arrived at work to find a sea of the cute creatures, both big and small, covering every nook and cranny of her desk.

“They found me out,” she said. “The ducks were everywhere.”

Now that the mystery was solved, Dixon wondered what to do with all the ducks on her desk. The solution was as easy as duck soup. She made Christmas decorations out of them for the office Christmas tree. A duck closely resembling each member of the Water Resources team followed.

“It was really fun to keep it going as long as I could,” she said. “I didn’t expect people to react as enthusiastically as they did.”         

Duck tales

EPWater employees found Dixon’s campaign just ducky, with many competing to add the tiny ducks to their growing collections.

Ciara Grier, Support Services I, said she and a co-worker often went on duck hunts.

“I thought it was a team-building exercise,” said Grier, agreeing it was a morale booster. “You would hear somebody say, ‘I found a duck,’ and everybody would start searching. You should have seen some of the guys in the office. Every time we found a duck, we would walk in so proud.”

Grier is grateful for the morale boost, as well as the many steps put in during the duck hunts.

“It was a real conversation starter,” Grier said. “You didn’t know the person, but you saw they had a duck at their desk. I asked them about where they found it or other hiding places they checked.”

Seeing the many tiny ducks decorating employee desks around Hawkins, Dixon takes pride in what she started. Her simple campaign to spread fun and promote positivity worked.   

“When you’re working in a cubicle all day, especially if you don’t have a window, you feel a little closed off and it can get a little gloomy sometimes,” said Dixon, adding she sits next to the elevators on the second floor. “When I heard people’s reactions, I thought it was totally worth it. It was just a daily treat for me.”

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