Confuzzledom

Just a place for me to gather my thoughts


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On trial

I had an interview yesterday. With 2 scary men in suits. Black suits. On a day where the temperature was above 30°C. I would have actually died! Thankfully I was not wearing a suit – just black trousers and a blouse. I still ended up all hot and sticky though – mainly because I got lost trying to find the place and ended up walking around in circles for 45 minutes. In the end I took a taxi, only to find out that the place was litterally round the corner… about 10 minutes walk from the train station. I had been going in the completely wrong direction! This was after travelling for an hour and a half on two trains. Then after the interview I had to do it all again in reverse. The train part anyway. Not the taxi, or the getting lost.

Then today I had my trial day. I had 3 more practice translations to do and also a proofread. Then I went around and met everyone else at the company. I had a good day, but whether anything will come of it is still up in the air… my practice translations need to be read first. Hopefully I will be able to tell you more by the beginning of next week. In the meantime my fingers shall remain firmly crossed… metaphorically at least. It may be a little hard to use a knife and fork if they were actually physically crossed….


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Busy, busy, busy

After a packed weekend (which I still need to tell you about) and yesterday’s interview I now have even more business ahead of me.
Jan’s parents are coming to Karlsruhe today so that they can go to a concert on Thursday. I’m not going to the concert itself – when I asked Jan if I would enjoy it he told me he’s not even sure yet whether he will like it so I told him to just get three tickets and spend some time with his parents – but we will be having dinner with them tonight and tomorrow evening than Jan has Thursday off so we can do something together during the day. They leave on Friday, either in the morning or early afternoon, then on Friday evening I have a friend coming to stay for the weekend. Busy, busy, busy. But in a good way.

But what I mostly came on here to tell you is that the company I had my interview with yesterday called this morning. They liked my practice translation and now want me to come in for a trial day next week. Things are progressing it seems. :-)


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The interview

Yes, I realise I have actually neglected my poor blog for an entire weekend… something which almost never happens. I couldn’t help it though… this pesky little thing called real life went and got in the way. This is good though, for it means I have much to tell you. Unfortunately I also have a flat that desperately needs tidying, and for once I can’t just ignore it because this week eyes other than my own and the boyfriend’s will get to see it. So I shall have to keep this one short.

And so, on to the interview. You did remember it was today, right? And you all had your fingers firmly crossed for me, didn’t you? If not I may have to blame you if I don’t get the job ;-)
Anyway… I think it went ok. Maybe. I didn’t get lost trying to find the place, which is a definite plus seeing as I had never been to that town before. And the people seemed nice. First I had an interview with the founder/director of the company, then with someone else and finally I had a practice translation to do. Now they are going to check my translation and get back to me, so don’t go uncrossing those fingers yet will you…


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More about the German employment agency. Because lately I seem to have a one track mind.

When you’re unemployed in Germany and you register yourself as such with the employment agency, at your first appointment with an advisor you have to sign an agreement. What the agreement says differs depending on your circumstances… they like to add bits, put in legal clauses, take bits away and generally change things. By the end of it you’re left with the vague feeling that you’ve just sold your soul to the devil for a bit of money and a lot of hassle.

In my case, because I have no savings and am therefore receiving the maximum amount of unemployment benefit, I had to agree that the job I want is not easy enough to find and therefore I should also be looking for other types of job as well. Because in my current circumstances I am clearly a burden on society and the employment agency needs to get rid of me as soon as possible.

Another part of the agreement says that I am required to apply for any jobs that the employment agency officially suggests to me as soon as possible, preferably within three days of receiving them. If I fail to do this my unemployment money will be cut by 30%… then by 60% and, after the third offence, taken off me completely.

This is why I spent most of this morning googling various combinations of the words “letter of application” and “secretary”. Except in German… so not actually those words at all. But you know what I mean.
It’s also why, if I don’t get the job I’m being interviewed for on Monday, I may very soon end up working as an office assistant somewhere in the Black Forest. But that’s ok… at least it’ll get me out of the house.


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Uninspired

First I really must apologise for my last post, for which the only accurate description would be self-pitying whine. I promise at some point I will write something interesting to make up for it. Probably not any time soon though. My inspiration levels are currently somewhere below zero. I can’t even think of anything ridiculous to craft out of vegetables for the Belgian Waffle Virtual Village Fête 2009, which, by the way, you should all participate in. Because who wouldn’t want to get creative with cake and soft stuff? It’s the way forward I’m telling you!

Oh, and I almost forget to mention that I’ve been invited for a job interview on Monday afternoon. So if you could all keep your fingers crossed and stuff I’d be most grateful.

Umm, that is all. I’m going to have a cup of tea now.


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Unnecessary interview nerves

I have an interview in an hour.
It’s for a job that I’m not even sure I want. In fact, I’m not even exactly sure what the job is… other than that it involves working in an office and the need to speak English.
Despite that I am nervous enough that my breakfast made me feel sick. Imagine what I’m going to be like if I ever manage to get an interview for a job I actually do want…


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Good stuff and guilt

I kind of had to tell my boss about the job interview today. He called me into his office to ask if I’d made my decision yet and when I said no he wanted to know why.Aarggh! I had no idea what to say! So I just told the truth. Then he was asking me what was so good about the other offer, or so bad about his. Then he said if they can’t be sure I’m going to take the job he can always advertise for someone else, becuase for him it doesn’t sound good. Oh man. Now I have a date for the interview – Thursday at 3:30pm – so tomorrow I have to go into work and ask for Thursday afternoon off. And whether I say it or not he’s going to know why. Eeep! Since I was already being honest when he asked me where the company is I figured there was no point in lying about that, so I told him. Stuttgart. To which he asked me if I really want to commute to Stuttgart every day. Well, that is one of the major factors against taking that job (if I’m even offered it!) The other one being that it will most likely pay less than he’s offering me. But it’s just translation, no project management. Although I think getting more project management probably isn’t a bad thing. And I can’t exactly run away and find a new job every time my work involves something I’m not that good at.
Anyway, so now I feel… I don’t know. Slightly guilty I guess. I mean, he’s offering me this great opportunity and I’m putting off answering because I’m considering taking something not as good, which I haven’t even been offered yet and may not even be offered. It’s almost like saying his company isn’t good enough for me or something. But apart from that work was actually pretty good today. I guess now they’ve told me they want me to stay I’m less worried that I might be doing something wrong. So that would be a point in favour of staying I suppose. Ugh, I hate making decisions. Even about good stuff.

Ooh, I also have other news!
Long time readers will be aware that I live in a student residence that I would really quite like to get out of, and in fact have to get out of by the end of March having told the people in charge that I would like to move out after this semester. Well, on 31st January I’m off to look at a flat! It’s not much – just a one room thing. But it would be a place of my own. And it at least has a separate kitchen, which a lot of the one room places don’t. And the rent is pretty cheap. I’m not getting my hopes up too much yet though. After all, I haven’t even seen it yet so it could be horrible, and also I’m probably not the only person that’s enquired about it. But it’s a start, and combined with the job thing makes me think things may be looking up in my life. Now I just hope it continues…


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Decisions, decisions

Okay people, I have a dilemma on my hands. I have to make a decision. Not something I’m good at in the slightest…
You see, today I was offered a proper job at the place I work. The contract would be for one year, following which I would be offered an ope-ended contratc, provided I still want to stay. All sounds very good, yes. Then I arrived home to find an email from the company I applied for a position of trainee translator at before Christmas. Guess what? They want me to come for an interview. So, what do I do? I have decided I will at least go to the interview at the new place, but that means taking a day off work. Do I tell the boss where I’m going? Even though he’s made me a definite job offer? And if I’m then offered the other job what do I do, where do I go? Aargh… it’s making my head hurt already and I haven’t even had the interview yet!
It’s a good kind of dilemma though. Really I shouldn’t be complaining. Still a dilemma though, so if anyone has any advice please feel free to give me it…


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Rubbish toys and interviews

Yesterday Jan bought me one of those new Kinder Joy things because he knows I like them and I’m trying to collect all the Loony Toons figures. The Kinder Joy was lovely, they taste so much better than the traditional Kinder Surprise Eggs. The toy on the other hand… Well, there have always been crap Kinder toys. In fact, if you think about it most of them are crap, unless you’re four years old. But even as a four year old I would have found this one crap. It was some weird purple… thing. I think it was meant to be a bear. A bear wearing swimming trunks and holding a duck shaped rubber ring. Then there were stickers to put on it. There are often stickers to put on these toys. But these particular stickers were most disappointing. They were plain white! The outline was drawn on of course, in black, but other than that they were white. And on the instructions it told you to colour them in yourself. How rubbish is that? I was not impressed at all.

The interview went well in case anyone’s wondering. I’ve been offered a 6 month internship to start with, then if all goes well I can have a proper job at the end of it. The internship will pay more than I’m on now, so even with travel costs I’ll be better off. I now have until Wednesday to decide whether to take it. Right now I’m just excited that they’ve offered me something, but before making the big decision I want to discuss it with my boyfriend and possibly also with his parents seing as they’re coming tomorrow. My parents have already been informed and both have said go for it. I have time though… no need to make any life changing decisions right now.


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Interview time again

In roughly four hours I have another job interview. Starting to feel a little nervous now, although not as nervous as I was before the last one. Maybe it’s because I’ve had more practice now, or maybe it’s pecause I’ve already translated a text for the company, which obviously can’t have been done too badly otherwise they wouldn’t want me to come in and meet them… right?

The cottage pie I cooked last night seemed to go down well. Even the vegetarian one wasn’t bad. I’ve never made anything with soya mince before so I was very impressed with myself. It didn’t taste much like cottage pie but it tasted ok. The meat one on the other hand did taste like cottage pie, which is good. For the first time ever in the history of our floor cooking meals for each other there was nothing left over. It seems I judged the amounts perfectly. Yay me! The only thing I didn’t judge perfectly was the timing… I said we would eat at 8pm, the vegetarian cottage pie was ready at 8:45pm, followed by the first meat one at 5 past 9. Ooops! Not my fault though, I couldn’t have started any earlier – I didn’t finish work til six!

Right, I’m off to see if the shower’s free yet (so annoying having to share 2 showers between 16 people!)
Wish me luck for the job interview!

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