Job hunting, walking and weirdos – first published 26 October 2012

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Oddballs, people who don’t quite fit in or seem, at first glance, a little strange are everywhere, I might even be considered as one of them. Without them the world would be a far less interesting place in my opinion. After all, the oddballs and weirdos are often the artists, poets, writers, inventors and the people who have ideas that change the world. Ok, so being odd isn’t always good and some weirdos are probably best avoided but a post from the end of October 2012 celebrated some of them.

25 October 2012

Good news really helps lift the mood and I couldn’t help doing a little victory dance last night when I got a message from my friend Dottie to tell me she’d been offered a job. Not just any job either, a job she wanted, interesting, close to home and, the best bit according to her, it was next door to a pub. I know she’s been looking for a while and a week or so ago she asked me for some advice about interviews because she knew I’d recently been through the job hunting thing. I’m not saying my advice made any difference, although I’d like to think I helped a bit, but it was nice to be asked and to be able to offer a few suggestions.

Job hunting is a tough old business these days and the longer it takes the more frightening it gets. Hopefully now she can get back to her normal nutty self. I’ve really missed reading about her mad exploits on Facebook while she’s been preoccupied looking for work. Nothing is guaranteed to make me laugh quite as much as one of Dottie’s posts, be it about her loony cat The Ginger Ninja, her embarrassing moments or the weirdos she attracts wherever she goes. It makes me feel almost normal too, almost…

Giving myself a gentle week to recover from my cold, I got the bus to work again and walked through the parks. This morning I noticed the purple heather is flowering, pretty little rows of lilac coloured bells that you hardly see until you get up close. I’m sure people must think I’m a nutter bending down to take photos of the flowers every day. Right on the edge of the park, by the fence I spotted a single mallow flower braving the wind and traffic fumes, of course I had to stop again and have a closer look. Funny how all the flowers seem to be purple at this time of year when in the spring it’s all yellow and white and the summer brings out the reds and oranges. I wonder if there’s a reason for that?

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Talking of weirdos, and there are certainly enough of them around these parts other than me, I saw a strange sight on my way through the park this morning. I thought I might have been hallucinating at first but I had a good stare and I really did see it. A young man, who looked to be in his late twenties, came cycling past with a cast on his leg. I’m not talking a little ankle cast here but a full leg cast from his foot right up to his knee. I still can’t work out how he was peddling. More to the point why? You’d think a broken leg would make you a little cautious about getting around but he was whizzing along on his bike faster than most people with two working limbs. I didn’t dare risk a photo so you’ll have to take my word for it. I’m not sure if I should be admiring his dedication in the face of adversity or worrying about his mental health. Maybe there’s a lesson in there somewhere, possibly about whining on and on because I have a little cold.

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It was worrying to hear of the closure of the Ford Factory in Southampton on the news this morning. Yet another big company pulling out of my city. I know how bewildered the Ford workers must be feeling, having been through something similar myself recently. Ford’s has been an institution in the city for as long as I can remember and it’s just one of a long line of factories and offices closing here. Not so many years ago we had Vosper Thorneycroft building ships just down the road from here, a massive British Rail carriage-works, a huge British Gas office, now they’re all gone, along with countless other businesses. The city can’t live on cruise ships alone. I hope the Ford workers get as much help to find new jobs as we did at Mad House but it makes me wonder just where those jobs are going to come from.

My own job seems to consist of an ever growing pile of paperwork at the moment. I’m sure it’s growing when I’m not looking. Arabella has been away all week which means I can get on with things but there were quite a few things I needed to talk to her about. She’d emailed this morning to say she was going to call at two o’clock to go over all the loose ends so, when the phone rang just on two, I had a big list ready to discuss with her. Turned out it was one of the sopranos getting all worked up about her programme and costumes needing reassurance. By the time I’d got rid of her I’d missed Arabella’s call. I did get to speak to her in the end but, by then, she’d run out of time to go through everything. As she’s travelling on Tuesday and uncontactable for most of the rest of the week it means I now have to go in on Monday. Musicians! Grrr.

Gigi was in today, after a week spent in various meetings. She wanted to walk home with me so, although I’d really been planning to sneakily catch the bus, I ended up walking home. It wasn’t too bad actually, having company does help take the mind off of feeling crap. When I got in though I was coughing and spluttering for about ten minutes like an asthmatic eighty year old with terminal pneumonia. Maybe not such a good idea then, but at least I got some fresh air.

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Marie

Writer, walker, coffee drinker, chocolate eater, lover of nature, history and the little things that make me smile

2 thoughts on “Job hunting, walking and weirdos – first published 26 October 2012”

    1. On the edge is good I think. Mother always said to me, “don’t follow the crowd,” and I never have. If that makes me odd then I quite like being odd.

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