Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Working Wonders

Cor! It's been a long, long time, hasn't it? Agnes Mildew-Parsnip has almost forgotten what it is like to write a blog. There was I saying to my buddy, Keli, at Counterfeit Humans, that I was giving it all up for good. No more; no more blogging: Hasta La Vista Blogger...and then the urge bit me on the bum this morning.

And it all started due to an abortive journey to work!

I guess the story starts a little earlier than that, though...

Around August last year, I decided I was going to try domesticity, and attempted to become a Retro Housewife. To this end, I twirled around in dirndl skirts with my hair in a French pleat; indelible red lipstick; stockings...and wellies for planting spuds out in the newly dug-over veg plot. For months, the house gleamed; the freezer was stocked full of home-made fish-cakes, casseroles, pasties, pies, parfaits...you name it, it was in there: Charles Parsnip gained a stone in weight, and #2 daughter lost a stone (hating everything bar Subway and chicken nuggets). I redecorated the kitchen, lounge, and three bedrooms; sowed spuds, carrots, peas, onions, leeks, tomatoes and bedding plants (the leeks, though, now belong to Mr P, as he planted them outside...).

Around six weeks ago, I became so bored, I got destructive, drank heavily, graffiti-ed the wallpaper, abused old ladies on mobility aids, took to jogging (for two days), watched daytime TV and suddenly realised, in a moment of epiphany, that Housewifery, if Mr Parsnip is not going to impregnate me, is NOT for me. (And let me hasten to add, Mr P has NO chance of impregnating me at the moment, the way I feel about kids!)

So, it was time to re-apply for weeerk. What could I do? Could I go back to my old job-type-of-thing, of online marketing? On the back of sorting out the water pressure on our boiler, and stopping the leaking radiators in the house, should I retrain as a plumber? Or a joiner, having always enjoyed wood-working and carpentry from my schooldays and my father's influence? Or what about Interior Design? I mean to say, that lettering in the bedroom looks bloody good! How many of you can say you wrote "Amore Vincit Omnia" with a steady hand after consuming half a bottle of Shiraz? In Calligraphic lettering?!

I re-applied for what I do best (I think) and that is online marketing, being a bit of a techy freaky-geek, deep down. I didn't go mad, really, being rather selective about what appealled. Mr Parsnip, being the magnanimous chappy he is (and having an ultradian memory...) informed me that I should go for a job which 'ticked every box'.

So, imagine my surprise (I have always wanted to write that à la Sunday Supplement Sensationalist Columnists) when I was phoned, out of the blue, by a company who were offering a role for which I had not applied, in a county to which I would not consider commuting...I informed them, immediately, that the type of commute they were expecting was out of my remit, and Thank You, but No, Thank You.

How about working from home, though?



You might be able to work from home if you show your face once a week?

*Ahem* Well, but of course. We can discuss this, can't we? We're all adults here! When shall I come over?

What about tomorrow?

*thinks* Bugger! I wanted to drunkenly write 'Noli Perturbare' on my bedroom door tomorrow in Italic Garamond script...

*brightly* OK! Send me the address, I shall SatNav it, and see you at 3pm, as I have a 1pm meeting.

The address came, with warnings that it was very easy to get lost. I cancelled my 1pm, called the interviewer, asked if I could come early and arrived at exactly the same time, had I not rescheduled...

The drive was horrendous. 52 miles away, into Black Pudding Land (Deepest, Darkest Lancashire) and I got horrifically lost as the SatNav refused, point blank, to recognise any of the roads, streets, postcodes, POIs, that I input. I sat outside the Renault garage (not the Mercedes garage, about which I had been informed) and thanked God for mobile phones. The chirpy boss answered and informed me that if I did find my way, unaided, to his business park, the job was mine, anyway. 

Spurred on by this, I found it, by hook or by crook, and almost shook his hand as I walked in, to exclaim, Where's the contract, then?

He was lovely, as was his partner. Next day, they offered me the job and I nearly bit their hands off. Although an agency had usurped them, by sending them my CV an hour after they had found mine on Monster I visited with them further to sort out the more 'sensitive' details.

And I got lost...


For some, very odd reason, I read, COME OFF AT JUNCTION 6 as, COME OFF AT JUNCTION 4.

I came off at J4, followed all the RH Lane, LH Lane, 2nd T @ R/A shorthand I had written, and kept thinking, Bloody Hell! I don't recall any of these places. I went across the same roundabout over the A666 (no joke! It really is the A666!) three times. Eventually, I was almost in tears, had rung the company and spoken to a telesales oik to pass a message on, and pulled into a burger bar lay-by.

The chap serving had 'football eyes': one home; one away and teeth that only an orthodontist could care about. But he was very amenable, looked at my directions, looked at me in pity, as though I was some escaped retard and explained that this was junction 4.

"Oh Shit!" I exclaimed, most indecently, and staggered across the potholes in the carpark, after having thanked him profusely, hobbling in my 5" heels and tight work skirt. I was hooted by a number of wagon drivers, who served to make me jump out of my skin and make me appear to be suffering from St. Vitus' Dance.

I eventually proceeded to the office, wherein my boss exclaimed that I was 'rubbish' and allowed me to go home early.

I was rescheduled to return in four days. Mr Parsnip informed me that time would fly so quickly, I would no sooner get there, than it would be time to come home. He was more correct than he has ever been in his life...by the time I reached the office, having travelled for 1.25 hours, I parked up and checked my text messages. There were two: one was from Mr P wishing me a lovely day; the other from the director asking me not to pitch up that day due to other commitments. I turned the car around and drove home...

Next time I went up, I didn't get home until 8pm, which wasn't much fun, particularly as the weather was decidedly awful on the M6 and then Mr P and I decided to have one of our bizarre rows where neither of us really knows why it happens but it just does...

And so I am back up there tomorrow. I have not slept properly for three nights, now, and am hoping that I will get some rest tonight. Mr P is already tucked up safely in bed, having had a jolly nice back rub from me. He has a day off tomorrow, but I am hoping against hope that he mows the lawn, hoovers the upstairs and makes me a jolly nice dinner for my return, but I am not holding my breath, knowing how blokes get side-tracked by DIY sites, techy sites, gaming sites, and porn.

So, I am just about to set my alarm for 6.30am. Thankfully, I now wear my hair very short, so a quick splash of water makes it seem OK rather than the previous 30 minutes GHD straightening, and, since the weather is so glorious now, I can happily squirt my face with fake-tan and look OK with a bit of mascara and lippy.

Roll on 7pm...


Lissy said...

hey there agnes: how did the day go? are you already working from home? i still think work is highly over-rated.

great post. i got some hysterical visuals!

glad you to see you back. i'm sorry i missed this when it first went up. i've been traveling so much.

write more!!!!!!!

Karen ^..^ said...

WOW!!! I was so glad to get a notice for this blog on my bloglines!! Congratulations on your new job! I'm so happy for you!!!

I'm sure it will get easier, and soon enough you'll be sailing there and sailing back as if it is as familiar to you as home. Sounds like your boss is pretty nice, and none of the BS that went on in your old job.

Glad to hear everyone is well, and here's hoping for a long and prosperous run for this job.

Welcome back, doll...

Media Junkie said...

you are back!!!! hoorah!!! i missed you, as I'm sure many other did.

great to hear about the job, even if it does sound fiddly.

Linda and her Twaddle said...

Agnes, now, you need a GPS! The other day I got lost on the way to work - okay, I was bike riding. But still, 10kms away and getting lost. At least it was sunny.

Glad you are back at work.

That whole staying at home thing. Okay for a while. I think it is nicer to think about it than actually do it.

Annie T said...

Lissy: I like that version of your name! Very pretty.

Yes, working from home and Oop North once a week...although I am unfortunately out this evening to watch an advisor go through the motions. I can think of nicer ways to spend my Thursday night, admittedly!

Karen: Thank you! If I'm being perfectly frank, I don't know, now, whether this job IS for me. Mr P and I have discussed its future long and hard, and I think I may actually hand in my notice in a few weeks' time. Can't put my finger on the reason why, but something just isn't appealing to me.

Media Junkie: That's nice of you to say! Yes, it's a fiddly one and, see my response to Karen, above!

Linda: I have a bloody integral GPS. It's turned on upside down for some bizarre reason, so I get lost even with that. No, I think I want to be a housewife again, to be honest...but we shall see...

Linda and her Twaddle said...

Annie, as much as you hate them, I have an award for you that requires your input. Come over and collect it!

Lissy said...

did you resign? i have intense dislike for jobs that don't work. what ever you decide, it's the right decision. good luck.

Keli said...

How very rude of me not to thank you for this mention - Thank you! - I hope none too late (months later!).
I blog in spells myself, so I know how you feel.
A workplace where you spend much of your time must be a good fit for you which means it must give you a tremendous sense of satisfaction, otherwise, forget it!