Pollyanna Rules

Silver line in the cloud, there surely is no hurry, but would you mind showing up?!


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things to be grateful four – day for

Well no, it’s not a typo, I just couldn’t help being silly with the title.
I can’t help being silly most of the time, to be honest.


 

I have been living here for a year now, studying hard(ish), volunteering here and there, making friends, taking pictures, getting to know a Country and the zillion of cultures mixed and living together. I never imagined such huge differences could exist in a tiny, tiny Country.

I am grateful for this year, it was a big leap into the void, at times I have thought it was a huge mistake, and maybe it was. Couldn’t make a better one, though.

The downside of this amazing experience is, needless to say, that I have spent all my money and I am nearly completely broke. It was an investment, and I hope it will bear some fruit. Still, I am broke.

I woke up this morning, checked my messages, and there it was! My former boss saying somebody is waiting for my CV. It’s in another Country, but a very nice one. And hey, did I mention I’ve been here for a year already?!

I am not sure where this will lead, and I know I wanted to write about the things I am grateful for in general, but today I can’t help feeling grateful for the opportunity.

I dare even say I am happy.

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A patient family

Clearly tired of sitting all day in an office, writing papers no one will ever read – except demigod and the centre of the Universe – I decided I have to go back to the field.
See people’s face, understand what’s needed and what we only suppose is, see the change, hopefully for the good.

So I started – more seriously – browsing through open positions, and found many interesting ones. It’s a wonderful area of work, difficult to find dull jobs. How did I manage to get my current one, is still a mystery.

When I was in Africa my family was worried all the time – same happened to me last month, with my loved one being “unaccounted for” in Damascus for three weeks, guess I had more reasons to be worried, honestly, but anyway  – so I browsed this list and decided to skip the top Countries, so they don’t need to worry too much.

But I have good chances to go to one in seventh position.

My mum will be so proud! Continue reading


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Apocalyptic Pollyanna

So,
I have been struggling in the last few weeks to find something funny to talk about, or find the funny part in whatever was going on around me.
Truth is, there are times that no matter how hard you try to pick yourself up, you simply can’t. And you have no other option but to live with it. And hope for a better day, tomorrow.

_________________________________________

I moved in – work-wise – with demigod. The first week was a nightmare. The second was worse.
Having to go to his office ten times a day and answering his five daily calls and twenty e-mails was exhausting, but being three metres away, oh dear!, he sings and whistles and asks for anything any second, no way to concentrate on whatever it is you are doing. Trying to do, more like.
Then, well, I could not just feel miserable, and tried to find the good side in this…whatchamacallit.
I arrive hours before he does, and now that he knows it, he no longer frowns when I try to leave early.
And he makes me coffee.
And brought me a Christmas present.
And for the first time in my life I can take the week off.
And from my new window I SEE THE SKY!

So basically the Apocalypse was a nice improvement in my life.

...and then one starts to see the beautiful things again

…and then one starts to see the beautiful things again


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Minidemigods – it’s a big community

I am biased, I know, and I tell myself I should try not to be. 
Then I hear conversations like this…

                                                                                

– He’s a wonderful person, very clever, not afraid of powerful people, not a Yes Man

– Oh you’re right!

– Definitely!

– Absolutely!

– I could not agree more!

– That’s what I have always thought of Mr X

– Actually, we were talking about Mr Y

– That’s what I always thought of him, too, of course


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A call from Demigod

Then I got another contract extension. 
On the bright side, the world still has somebody who works to “do good”.
On the dark side, Demigod thinks he is entitled to treat me as a slave more than he did.
On the “oh, come on, let’s be practical” side, I will still have money to buy food at the end of this year.
Sounds good enough for a Monday morning.

                                                                                     

Thursday was a holiday.
Friday most people decided to take an extra day off, and have a long weekend. Sweet.

I was one of the many.
The many who decided to take the Friday off, but…

Wednesday afternoon, around five, call from Demigod.
Trembling, I pick up the phone, and there he goes with his “did-you-want-to-leave-early?-muahuahuahuah” requests: write a speech for a conference, reply to a message he won’t be bothered to read, collect and analyse financial data on whatever it was…

I reply sure, it will all be ready by Monday, we can have a quick check then.

Monday? did I hear well? I want to discuss these things with you on Friday. Did anyone say you could take a day off on Friday? wait, I have a call on the other line, will call you back…

Now, I don’t want to split hairs, but my contract says I work from home and have to come to the office only for meetings. I am not supposed to be here everyday. And I do. So actually working from home every now and then should not be an issue, in my humble opinion.
Little did I know that with each extension I would have become more of a slave and less of a consultant.
I knew better than to argue with him, so I waited for him to call back.




Six thirty I was still waiting. Put my coat on and went to Demigod’s Office.
He was gone.

Friday morning – still tired from a wonderful dinner that had turned into late night chat and a long drive – I was at my desk.
Call to Demigod. No answer.
Call to Demigod, again. No answer, again.
Lunchtime, still no trace of him.

It felt great to take the afternoon off, after all.

 


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Life-Work balance?

I disappeared, I know.
I said I am lazy, didn’t I?

Anyway, I had been writing bits of would-be posts on random computers, at work, at home, at my parents’, on my mobile, even (not sure how to make the thing work properly, though) when I realised I had forgot  the password.
I did not worry at first, kept telling myself I would remember it tomorrow, and then tomorrow, and then tomorrow, and then…
did I mention I am lazy?

_________________________________________

Being constantly in between contracts, much of my free – and not only that, I must admit – time is devoted to job-hunting, which includes, when I am lucky, job interviews.

A few months back, I was asked to have an interview for a position I was slightly overqualified for. I am not particularly picky, when it comes to avoid starvation, so I went. Quite happily, and quite sure I would get the job.

Too bad it appeared that what most mattered was the knowledge of the local language.
Now, I am the kind of person who is terrified of going anywhere without knowing a bit of the language, but it was an “International” position in a supposedly international city, and no one ever mentioned the need to speak the local language.
I was angry and disappointed.
Then I told myself well,  I took a day off work, I flew to a place I had never been before, I saw a very lively demonstration, and was amazed at the punctuality of public transport. At no cost. Things could have been definitely worse.

Of course the other side of the story was that I had wasted half a weekend getting to the place, arrived at my airport very late, which meant I had no other option but to take a taxi.  Unless

And here comes the silver lining 🙂

Imagine going through that, imagine the disappointment and anger in finding out your interview was not supposed to make any difference.
Imagine having just started dating somebody you could only see during the weekend, and having missed your chance.
Imagine that person offering to drive you to the airport on Sunday morning, and to come pick you up on Monday night “if I don’t fall asleep”. Which is, of course, the case.

Imagine the surprise finding them in front of the airport,half asleep in the car.

I may not have got the job, but had I had to choose, I would not have changed a thing.♥


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Demigod and the Centre of the Universe

As I said, I have a plethora of bosses.

Let’s focus on the two we’ll probably talk about again. And again:

Demigod: high level officer who sometimes behaves as if he were a demigod. Which is apparently the rule among his peers. We work in the same building. Me confined to the attic, which is not as cool as it sounds. Except during the winter, when it’s really cool. 

Centre of the Universe: in charge of the project I currently work on. An extremely indecisive person, he recently resolved to rule the World. He works far away, which is the perfect distance.
I am not sure what he does, to be honest. He probably is the one I should refer to as “supervisor” when applying for other jobs. Which of course I don’t. The supervisor thing.

Monday last week I receive an a-mail from CoU asking to pick up his passport and send it to his office. Half an hour later another e-mail says no, don’t send anything, I am coming to see Demigod next week.

Now, running around to pick up stuff is not exactly what I am paid (???) for,  but given the rough spot we’ve been through lately, I try to be nice. And win a morning off ;).
Passport at my place, I wait for more instructions. Nothing. For two weeks.

Yesterday, around five, I get a message for CoU “Demigod was supposed to arrange next week’s meeting but I haven’t heard from him, send the passport now”.
Next week? I thought it was this one.
Demigod arrange a meeting?! Like, the Queen cooking dinner. I was impressed. Well, I would have been, had this meeting actually taken place.

Am I supposed to go around with his passport with me all the time,  just in case he wants me to send it immediately?
Shame on me, I had no idea.
We had a weird exchange

 ” I’ll try to do it in the afternoon (it was something past five by then, no way to get it done), otherwise on Tuesday. I told you I would be leaving tomorrow”

“No, send it now, I need it. Oh, and I won’t be coming to work until Tuesday too”

I was puzzled.

“So there’s no need to rush through the city with this storm? I don’t think it’s sensible to risk my health for a passport you wouldn’t be able to have in your hands before Tuesday anyway”

“Tuesday is perfect”

The subtle art of pointing out the obvious.

Needless to say, quarter to midnight he decided I need not send the passport after all.

How many more will I get before Tuesday comes?