33 vs. 58

Oct. 4th, 2015 03:58 pm
susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)
Meme via [personal profile] chagrined and [personal profile] alias_sqbr.

At 33:
I lived in: a mid-terrace house within walking distance of the town centre. I'd moved in at the beginning of the year, from rented accommodation, after getting a job that paid enough to get a mortgage. I barely knew any of the neighbours.

I drove: nothing. Nobody taught working-class girls to drive when I wor a lass! [when I was young in the North]

I was in a relationship with: no-one. I called myself celibate, because I didn't have the vocabulary I have now.

I feared: I don't remember. Probably big things like nuclear war and environmental disasters.

I worked at: a small software house a (longish, but straightforward) bus journey away, as a computer programmer, maintaining and developing financial management systems for the construction industry.

I wanted to be: the same, but better paid with a shorter commute and fewer annoying colleagues! Working part-time for an equivalent rate would also have been excellent, as I was definitely shorter of time than of cash.

At 58:
I live in: the same house. I've had some work done on it and I paid off the mortgage the first time I was made redundant. I still know very few of the neighbours; most of them are (comparatively) new.

I drive: still nothing. The jobcentre's "removing barriers to employment" doesn't stretch to paying for driving lessons.

I am in a relationship with: no-one. I now identify as aromantic (a word I'd never encountered until I met the internet) and asexual (which, back in the day, I only knew as the term for critters that reproduce by splitting).

I fear: Nothing? I worry about things - on a global level, mostly climate change; on a personal level, mostly cashflow.

I work at: housework (not as much as I should) and looking for work (same?). I've been unemployed since I was made redundant the second time, and have pretty much given up on ever getting another job. The most important thing I'm doing, actually ... mainly consists of waiting, because my financial advisor apparently doesn't want to issue progress reports until he's done All Of The Research, and is waiting in his turn for the company currently sitting on my money to respond to enquiries. (That's "my money that I earned in an earlier decade". It's grown under their management OK, but if they want to be my actual pension provider they need better customer service.) Recent changes in the rules mean that I should be able to derive an income from it that'll last till I can afford to retire properly, while being adequate in a way that my current benefits aren't.

I want to be: retired! A bit of "the change I want to see in the world" wouldn't go amiss too, but I can't see much beyond that horizon.
susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)
A lot has happened in the last couple of weeks, mainly on the Tuesday before last.

That morning, when I tried to check my email I found that my internet wasn't working. It turned out that my phone was dead (the internet is via the originally-BT landline), so I had to find somewhere to call the Phone Co-op (who are also my ISP) from. They were great, I didn't have to talk directly to BT myself at all, which was a big plus, but I did have to find somewhere else to phone from later to find out what was happening (yes there are still people who don't have mobiles). Openreach (the BT spinoff that do the infrastructure maintenance) had said the engineer was on his way, so I went home to wait.

In the meantime, because there was a job application I needed to finish, I'd put the draft version on a memory stick and gone down to Ingeus (the "Work Programme" company) to use their internet. Thank FSM they moved to an office I can easily get to! I also got some feedback from my advisor, including the advice to ID as disabled and ask for the "Two Ticks" thing (which guarantees an interview to people with disabilities who meet the minimum criteria).

So that afternoon, the Openreach engineer turned up, did some tests indoors and determined that the problem was outside and went out to fix it. It took him about an hour while it got dark and started raining. Rather him than me! I was worried he'd be climbing poles in those conditions, but apparently not. Then he had some trouble testing it afterwards, but it worked! Hurrah!

A few days ago I got an email inviting me to an interview for that job. Of course because of the "Two Ticks" thing I only know they don't think I'm completely useless, not that I'm necessarily near the top of the list. It's at a reasonable time of day, but wearing interview clothes in this weather won't be fun, by golly.

The Xmas Radio Times double-issue arrived days ago, and I've barely thought about supplies; I need to start doing cards today, and I'm not sure I'll bother with decorating since there won't be anybody here but me.

Summary: interview this coming Thursday panic panic ah! Xmas in 2 weeks panic panic ah! *distracts self with free browser games*
susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)
I've had a rotten cold. It's pretty much over now except for the annoying cough, but for a while there, combined with all the Other Stuff, it was using up my cope to the extent that I was neglecting the housework and playing free browser games instead of doing anything useful (or sociable) that would take both energy and brain.

Part of the Other Stuff was Sudden Short-Notice Interview, which was a surprise. My (latest) adviser thought the job was "ideal", whereas I thought it was "very ambitious". I actually came out of the interview a lot more convinced that my skills and experience were relevant to the job, but obviously I didn't convince the interviewers. It's just down the hill, part-time, and mostly IT back-office work, which is me, but they want someone who can do project management and "customer care", which isn't.

Another part of Other Stuff was this (non-diplomatic email to $UTILITY-CO; translating into HTML loses some of the formatting):
cut for length )
(I haven't had a reply to the email, but the original problem has been sorted out. The guy at the bank had no problem with the voice recognition system, but waited at least 8 minutes before getting through to a person.)
susanreads: a butterfly on a flower (lilac) (summer)
The weather has been up and down like a yoyo, recently. Now it's hot again: open windows, close curtains, watch Glastonbury on TV with a cold drink weather. I wonder how long that'll last.

Tomorrow, back to worrying about the govt.'s latest workfare scheme. Nobody who wants slaves will be interested in rickety old me, will they?

Does anybody know how to associate Spotify with a program (VLC, Windows Media Player, whatever) so I can listen to the F Word's playlist? Firefox doesn't recognise it, and the site apparently won't allow me to download it except via iTunes. I don't want to find out whether I can get iTunes to work without giving it my credit card; I don't trust it not to take over all my media preferences either.

Suspense

Mar. 13th, 2011 11:40 am
susanreads: my avatar, a white woman with brown hair and glasses (Default)
So I had another interview this week. I came out feeling a lot more positive (about the job, not my prospects of getting it) than I was a week ago. It's still an early start, but it's not the excessive hours specified in the Jobcentre listing. It's a long walk from the bus stop, but feasible, and there's a canteen on site, so I wouldn't have to go yomping at lunchtime. Most importantly, the job sounds more interesting than the first description, with the possibility of moving sideways in exactly the direction I want to move.

The bad news: they had a shortlist of 30 people to interview. The good news: they'll be creating more posts over the next couple of months. So, possibilities! They'll decide on this first one some time in the next week.
susanreads: Pooh with his head stuck in a honeypot, "Oh Bother" (oh bother)
I had an interview this week. It was the first real interview I've had for months, and the best prospect (in being the right kind of challenge, and in a suitable location) for at least 2 years. I also wasn't rubbish at the interview this time.

I got a letter yesterday to say I hadn't got the job. I also got an email inviting me to an interview next week, but that's not nearly such a good job, excessive hours, and a lot further to travel.

So it's back to feeling like I'm never going to get paid work again. If I get funding for the course I want to do, that'll be interesting, but it'll just widen the range of things I can plausibly apply for in competition with 317 younger, fitter extroverts.
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