Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Virgin on the ridiculous...

I moved out of my rented house in such a rush and now seem to be paying the consequences. Either that, or am a victim of complete incompetence. Hmm.... you decide.

This was the only time I have ever moved without notifying all of the utility companies in advance, and I contacted Virgin Media the day after I had moved out to cancel my Broadband, TV and Phone package. They advised me that normally they require 30 days notice, but that I could opt for immediate disconnection if I was sure that I no longer needed to use the phone. I'm not quite sure which part of 'I have handed in the keys and no longer have access to the property' they didn't understand, but there we go.

After confirming that I wanted immediate disconnection, I asked for an estimation of the final account, given that I paid for the service one month in advance as part of my contract. The woman advised that I owed roughly £8, plus any call charges.


Oh that it were true.

Two weeks later I was browsing my bank account, cancelling any remaining direct debits. And there it is: a debit from Virgin Media for £39.82. £39.82? That's not what I had written down on my notepad. That's not £8.

I rang them up to query the charge, slightly curious as to what they were feeding their bills to make them grow by nearly £32. The man I spoke to couldn't answer my query, except that the early disconnection fee was apparently £15 and I owed £18 for the days remaining on my contract, although he couldn't give me the exact dates this covered. He said that according to the system, I had been advised of the early disconnection charges, although the woman hadn't recorded the actual value. More than a little disgruntled, I was advised to write a letter to the Customer Care team, and he gave me the address.

I wrote the letter, but due to a) my envelopes being stored in my Dad's workshop and b) the black ink on my printer being extremely low, it didn't make it past the hard drive of my laptop.

I did, however, get round to printing out the cancellation of my TV Licence, with a request for refund.

Today my redirected post started to arrive. In the first bundle were 3 letters from the TV Licensing authority - the first two confirming the cancellation of my licence, with refunds of £70 and £12.12 respectively. Thank you very much. The third was a letter explaining that they had noticed I had recently cancelled my direct debit, and therefore it was not possible to take further instalments, and could I contact them to provide my bank account details?

Er, in a word, No.

Also included in this bundle was a pre-court notification from a Debt Collection agency, stating that I owed Virgin Media the sum of £39.82, and that failure to pay would result in further proceedings.

Interesting. How do they manage to type these letters, given that the left hand clearly doesn't know what the right hand is doing....

Tuesday, 27 April 2010

It's the way I tell 'em

Two quick jokes...

Joke #1

Two cats were swimming the channel: a British cat called One Two Three, and a French cat called Un Deux Trois.

Which cat won?

The English cat, One Two Three.


Because Un Deux Trois quatre cinque..........

Joke #2 - a Hebrew joke...

Miriam was in court, having been caught shoplifting.

"You stole a can of peaches" the Judge said "How do you plead?"
"Guilty" says Miriam
"Why did you steal the peaches?" the Judge asks
"Because I was hungry" Miriam replies.
"How many peaches were in the can?" the Judge asks
"Five, your Honour"
The Judge thinks for a moment and then said "Okay, so for this crime you will serve 5 days in prison - one for each peach"
At this point, Miriam's husband stands up and says "Excuse me, your Honour, I would like to give some more information"
"Go ahead" says the Judge
"She also stole a can of peas...."

Hey, I didn't say they were good jokes...

Monday, 26 April 2010

Procrastination, continued...

Okay, okay, so nobody's perfect. But I'm doing my best. Well, maybe I'm not quite doing my best, but I'm planning to later on. I promise.

I've found a job that I am really interested in applying for. I have just about all of the skills in some areas, and more than the skills in others. It's for a really good charitable organisation. I am fired up. I can see myself in this role.

And here is my downfall. I can so much see myself in this role that the thought of not getting an interview is giving me the shakes. So I really need to get the application right. And as the application doesn't have to be in until next week, I am spending more time than would be required by any normal person. (Then again, who said I was 'normal'...)

So I haven't actually completed any of the fields on the application form. Not yet. But when I do, man, it's going to be impressive - they won't be able to turn me down, surely? But I promise you that everything I have done during the day is working towards creating a blinding application and preparing me for interview.

First of all, I printed out the application form, job description and equal opportunities form, at which point I noticed that the black ink on my printer was Extremely Low. I already ordered the ink when it was 'low' and the packet was waiting to be collected at the local Royal Mail collections office, one train stop away. So before they decided to return it to sender, I thought I ought not procrastinate any more and go and pick it up.

And as the collection office was one train stop away, I pondered the chances of being caught not paying for my fare. I mean, it's one stop, right? On a national rail line, during the middle of the day... So I didn't pay my fare. I wonder if this could count on my CV as an example of Risk Taking? (or whether it would be considered pure theft?)

Anyhow, the train arrived and, lost in my thoughts, I casually boarded in the third carriage. The doors beeped and closed, at which point I surfaced from my dream state for five seconds, looked to the right, and saw halfway down the carriage three men wearing yellow jackets with writing on which read "RAIL ENFORCEMENT OFFICER". Oh. Bugger.

Luckily for me, all three of them were already 'enforcing penalties' on some other risk taker. I'm not sure why it took all three of them, but I'm glad that it did. Muttering a profuse number of prayers in my head, I tried to look as casual as possible whilst willing the next station to appear, considering that shifting from one leg to another with my finger on the 'Door Open' button and muttering 'Come o-o-o-o-on, come o-o-o-o-on' would attract more than a small amount of suspicion. And there were three of them. I'm not sure if it was relief or the thrill of getting away scot free, but I leapt off the train giggling like a schoolgirl.

After wandering halfway round the streets of Bruce Grove (walking past a pub called The Titanic, would you believe) I eventually asked for directions to the parcel office and discovered that it was located just behind the station itself. Next time I will look at Google Maps the right way up. Thankfully a good sense of direction is not required as part of my job role, with the exception of actually getting to the interview.

There were no enforcement officers on the way home, and no, I didn't pay. Evidence that I am proficient in Probability.

When I got home I had the bright idea of contacting a friend to see if I could use his online training account to brush up on some of the technology required for the role. More theft. I shall be punished. I also emailed another friend to ask if she would pull some Help Desk data so that I can see what type of calls I may have to handle. And then I started working through the online training itself.

Everything I've done today (except for the blatant stealing) is all a good foundation for future job roles. Kind of. In any event, it's still one step further than yesterday.

Who knows what tomorrow will bring.

Sunday, 25 April 2010

Building my castle on the rock

What's going on? The majority of blog posts I have caught up with today have been on either washing, or condoms, or washing and condoms.

I cannot add to the condom side of things, having no need for them in my life at this particular moment in time (chance would be a fine thing), but I was planning to do a couple of loads of washing this afternoon.

Wow - the interconnectedness of all things. The Universe Speaks. And not just in Blog Land.

The energy for last week (and being carried in to this week) was to Love Thy Neighbour As Thyself. Not having attended the Zohar class (where the energy of the week was explained), I was a little bit surprised to hear this given that this was the conclusion I had come to the day before.

The concept of Love Thy Neighbour As Thyself, to me, means two things - first, that you cease to judge anybody, and secondly (and most appropriate for this week) if you want to love thy neighbour as thyself, first of all you have to love thyself.

When the concept of this was mentioned during the shabbat lecture, my friend turned to me and said "Just yesterday I was saying to my friend, if the river is to feed all of the streams, something needs to feed the river"

It's so true, and something I have come to realise over the past week or so. It seems as though I am not the only one - you see: The Interconnectedness of All Things....

I bought a guided meditation package just over a week ago, feeling the need for a little help on visualising my future. It is a 21 day course, which guides you to achieving a goal. So first of all, you have to set the goal. And the instructions somewhat disappointed me.

"Think of a big goal that you feel really excited about...."

Okay, so I need to get a job. Level of excitement? Zero. Too much fear, too much guilt, too much lack, not enough appreciation of what I can do. Oh. So that's not very helpful. I sat and looked at the sheet of paper, and turned the instructions around in my head. So, let's look at this another way, what kind of job could I be really excited about getting? Something that makes me come alive?

The job came to me, my imagination started to work, and my excitement started to grow. And as I began to visualise being in this job, time and time again, I started to be able to see my abilities for myself.

This has fired off a whole chain of events - an internal shift which I've not had in a very long time. I have started to love what I have to offer, without the need to hear it from anyone else. I have started to understand that my future which I have been seeing in shades of Depression Grey for so very long, is starting to burst in to colour. Without the ability to really connect to a positive future, I had no desire. Now my desire is growing.

And once that connection has been made of taking care of my own happiness, of understanding what I am capable of, of truly appreciating myself and hence loving myself, then the rest appears to be just commentary. I don't need to look at other, more accomplished people and feel as though I am less - because, well, good for them, I have something to offer too. The guilt that has kept me secluded for so many years is starting to fall away, and I've discovered that once I have removed my own fear of judgement from other people, it has ceased to exist. It was only me who was putting it in to the picture in the first place, whereas when I am focusing on the positive - on what I can do - what I haven't done just doesn't get discussed. How sublime.

Thank heavens for guided meditation. I feel as though I am finally building my castle upon the rock. But until I am living in that castle, I guess I will still have to do my own washing...

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Yes, I am just doing this for fun

Okay, so I finally finished two CVs. And saved them. And then my head fell off through the sheer effort of concentration (and probably way too much caffeine), so I went to watch a little bit of TV (something that I never do during the day, although to be fair, it was 4pm by the time my head fell off).

And then I went back and re-opened my CVs and decided that I wasn't happy with them.

How can I be? How can you capture the magnificence of my Being on two sides of A4? Impossible.

Bereft of anything else to add, I decided to make them look a little prettier instead. Blind the agencies with outstanding layout. That'll do the trick.

As it was 4pm and my head had fallen off, there was no chance of having to actually speak to anyone, so I cooked dinner and then went back to my free Hebrew course. And I love it. I cannot write the letters for toffee and am reliant on seeing the vowel sounds for pronunciation, but I love it. I am now at the end of lesson 3, and only have one free lesson to go before I discover that I cannot afford to pay to learn any more.

So there's my incentive to get a job. That and a home laser hair removal kit.

Later in the evening I had a call from my Dad, who told me that I needed to get a job.
Half an hour after that, my 'landlady' gave me a lecture on getting a job, actually stating that at times she wanted to put me over her knee and smack me for hiding away instead of working.

It's as if people think that I am doing this to somehow piss them off - like I am enjoying watching my bank account run further in to the red. What a hoot!

I can understand their frustration because I know what I am capable of. If I could start work tomorrow without having to be screened, interviewed, tested, judged, questioned and doubted, then I would.

On the surface, to the people who know me, nothing appears to have changed. I am lazy and avoiding work. I am wasting my talents. I am irresponsible. They don't see what is stopping me and for the life of me I cannot explain this invisible wall which has blocked me for so long.

What they cannot see are the changes taking place within. Over the past week I have started to develop an inner strength that I haven't felt before. Something is definitely going on and the bricks are being knocked away, one by one.

And now that I have finally finished my CVs, the world may just be my lobster...

The Fine Art of Procrastination

I am pulling my CV together. Honest. I am closer than I have ever been. In fact, I have created one CV and am now in the process of creating a second one for the type of role that I actually want.

I am way too modest for CV creation to come naturally to me. No, seriously, I am the most modest person going. Out of all of the modest people out there, I am the best. (Hmmm... wonder if I could make that in to a bullet point in my Personal Profile?)

The pain of creating this amazing CV (which will only have to be chopped and changed and buggered about with anyway, so I am not sure exactly why I am giving myself such a hernia over this) has grown so huge that it is remarkable how many other "important" things I am finding to do with my time.

Even on the best day, I am a mental butterfly, lightly landing on a task for, oh, about five minutes before being distracted by the next brightly coloured or shiny thing. My boredom threshold even for the things I love to do is very low. I feel pity for my past boyfriends, who had to deal with 'oh, you're still horny? I am ready for a nice cup of tea' only five minutes after removing our clothes. Or maybe I exaggerate. Perhaps it was ten minutes.

With the absence of a boyfriend, sex is off the list as a distraction, and I find myself taking the art of procrastination to its most mundane level.
  • Get up, make cup of coffee.
  • Make another cup of coffee.
  • Morning meditation.
  • Third cup of coffee.
  • Get dressed.
  • Read email - pick out the emails to respond to later, after creating CV.
  • Open CV document.
  • Decide to respond to emails now, rather than later. I mean, who knows how long this is going to take?
  • Remember to put washing on. Return to laptop.
  • Remember to take chicken out of the freezer. Return to laptop.
  • Check email again. Oh look, I can respond to this one really quickly. Oh, and this one has a really interesting article.
  • Look at CV. Hear stomach rumble. Eat banana and make a cup of tea.
  • Decide to quickly check blogs whilst finishing cup of tea.
  • Empty washing machine and take time to remove as many creases as possible when placing clothes on dryer.
  • Remember that I want to order some books on Amazon, have a very quick search.
  • Follow links from recommended titles and end up taking 2 full lessons on how to speak Hebrew. Feel proud that I stopped at 2 lessons, when 4 were free.
  • Return to CV, write a couple of lines. Get stuck.
  • Check email, just in case. Find another couple of interesting articles.
  • Decide to have a break from the computer, back is getting stiff and hand turning in to claw.
  • Make another cup of tea. Have brainwave on how to deal with CV format. Promise to instantly return after cup of tea and put changes in place after lunch.
  • And after checking email..
  • And after checking for updated blogs...

This too, will pass. Just one more check of email...

Sunday, 18 April 2010

No Pain, No Gain

Without wanting to bore you with a load of spiritual clap trap, we are in the period of the Counting of the Omer. The Counting of the Omer comes directly after Pesach and lasts seven weeks. It's a time where you shouldn't start anything new. It's a time where life feels like wading through treacle and no progress seems to be made.

Shabbat yesterday was filled with strained faces - lots of grinning through gritted teeth. Ask the question "How are you?" and the reply is never "Great!" but more along the lines of "Ye-e-e-e-e-a-a-ah - ask me another" accompanied by an expression that says 'we're in the Counting of the Omer and I feel like I am wading through treacle'

Fortunately, when you wade through treacle (can't say that I have personally had the experience, but I have a very good imagination and can see it as being at least twice as challenging as Aqua Aerobics) it might be tough, but the rewards are greater. Push through anything during the Counting of the Omer and you have the chance to earn yourself a great deal of Light on the night of Shavuot - the day where it is possible to tap in to the energy of Immortality. Okay, so now we're talking - surely it has to be worth the effort.

One of the things I decided to push through was this whole business of exercise, because thin though I may be, I am not remotely fit. I have received many compliments on my new figure, having dropped a dress size over the past few months, and have also been questioned on how I achieved my weight loss. To this end I am honest. "Unhealthily" I reply. Add stress to not eating from one day to the next and the love handles just melt away, as does half of your muscle. The tops of my arms are now sleek and skinny, and if I tense my stomach muscles I have a totally unearned six pack going on. Kind of. If I squint a little. Even my usually rather sticky out bum has started to look flat. The thighs, it has to be said, are still in existence.

The only problem with not eating is that there is little energy to do anything else and to this extent skinny people with eating disorders are not the most fun people to be around, because after ten minutes of window shopping (if you haven't lost them down a grate by this point) they want to sit down and take a rest. And the number of times I have almost slipped imperceptibly between train and platform where there are no 'Mind The Gap' signs just beggars belief. If it weren't for my long, flappy feet it would be a different story altogether.

Anyhow, being a lover of healthy food, junk food AND chocolate, I decided that if I want to stop drifting around like an outpatient, I ought to start eating AND start exercising. And then maybe I'll get to keep my new size (because I can't afford to buy more clothes) and I will have more energy.

I know, just call me Einstein.

So on Friday I finally took my Bar Method DVD out of it's box and ran through the workout. And I love the Bar Method. Lots of little, tiny movements, no leaping around, and short term pain. There are lots of little repetitions, but not enough to make me cry. Just when I get to the point where I am thinking 'it's no good, I'm going to have to put my leg down', the instructor on the DVD (who has the body that I am aiming for, dammit) says 'Okay, and we're done. You can lower your leg. Good Job!'

After the workout, I get the feeling that, actually, I haven't done anything at all. I feel fine. Did any of those teeny movements actually do anything? I feel doubtful. The same doubt that I feel when I take any action in other areas and am impatient to see the change.

Luckily, workout-wise, I don't have to wait too long to feel the difference. Because I woke up yesterday feeling as though I had run the London Marathon a day early. And this is supposed to make me fit? I thought, as I clawed my way in to the bathroom, my calf muscles so tight that I could barely get my heels on the ground.

So I spent most of yesterday in various stretch postures to prevent my body from seizing up in to a shape resembling The Hooded Claw. Halfway through the afternoon, after an inadvisable nap which had turned most of my muscles to wood, there was a knock at the door. It was the local Jehovah's Witnesses.

After a brief and polite discussion where I explained that I studied Kabbalah (which they had never heard of), she glanced curiously at my rigid posture and asked a crucial question:

"Is Immortality something that you believe in?"

In theory, yes I do. In practice, I'd feel blessed if I made it to next week....

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Life's Simple Pleasures

Life in Tottenham is bringing many challenges.

No, it's not the neighbourhood, with the group of local itinerant teenagers sometimes breaking in to the block to smoke cannabis and intimidate the residents.

It's not even the slightly infrequent overground train service which only runs every half hour on a Sunday which is getting me down.

No, no, it's more of a fundamental requirement which is bugging me - Water.

I should be grateful really, that I live in a country which provides 24 hour access to the most important element in drinkable form. And I am. I am eternally thankful for this sustaining source of life being piped in to the house. No, truly. It's a blessing. Thank You God that I shall never go thirsty.

But hey, God, now that you are on the line, could I ask just a teensy favour? Could you warm it up a bit and bring it through the taps a tiny bit faster, so that I can have a hot bath at some point today, preferably before I have to leave the house at 5?

The flat I live in is on the 4th floor. The day after I moved in, the water pressure coming through the bath taps and the shower dropped significantly enough to trick the boiler in to thinking that nothing was coming through.

Now, call me spoiled if you wish, but I do love a hot shower. Standing under a dribble of tepid water is not enough to set me up for the day. My landlady is practical and philosophical - a tepid shower is not so bad - it's tolerable.

No, no, no. It's not tolerable - it's insufferable! I don't wake up in the morning until my skin is a bright shade of pink all over!

Being of swift mind, I soon discovered a neat little trick: if I turn on the hot tap at the sink and turn it down to a trickle once the hot water starts coming through, the boiler stays on and the dribble of water trying to pass itself off as a shower comes through passably warm. Sometimes it even steams up the mirrors.

Today, being delightfully filled with snot and feeling groggy, I decided that it would be a real tonic to have a good soak instead. After 'running' the bath for half an hour and writing most of this blog post in the meantime, I returned to the bathroom to find 2 inches of water which still didn't really fit my description of 'hot'.

Oh well. As a good friend once said: "Persistence narrows the odds"

As would a good plumber.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

Little Sis, Big Sis

There comes a time in every girls life when she realises that she is not getting any younger.

Don't get me wrong, (oh, my God, I sound just like mother), I still feel very young at heart and as genes go, I chose my parents well.

I have always looked young for my age and for a while this did not play in my favour - not so much in relationships (which man doesn't want to go out with someone who has the worldly wisdom of a 25 year old, but the looks of a 19 year old?) but more with respect to work. Throughout my twenties my face refused to age and hence I commanded the respect of an office junior.

At University in my late twenties, I looked the same age as all of the other students, but being mentally older than my actual years was deemed way too sensible and boring to fit in (oh pullease, Been there, done that. I went through the binge drinking and staggering home at all hours years ago, and had been out from under the watchful eye of my parents since my fellow students were still chewing on rusks). I didn't want to be in their gang anyway.

As I have tiptoed through my thirties, things have improved. I am now receiving a little more respect because I look old enough to make an adult decision, but am still receiving compliments that I don't look a day over, oo, 32. And sometimes less, which is nice.

And no matter what age I reach, my older sister is always three years ahead of me. And she's always looked older than me.

Looking at our childhood photos, it was obvious who was older. I guess it's not rocket science to distinguish a 3 year old from a 6 year old, or a 14 year old from an 11 year old. We were visibly very different - my sister had a slightly broader face and darker, thicker hair. She was always much taller and stronger (compared to my 'runt of the litter' look with three hernia operations under my belt by the age of six) and she was always more interested in clothes than I was. It took a long while to separate me from my M&S boys shoes, staypress trousers and Harrington jacket. So she always looked and behaved more grown up, whereas I was the tomboy cheeky monkey, splodding about in the background, making mud pies, climbing trees and falling off my bike (and yes, I am still talking about my twenties here).

The only thing that was really the same about us is that we were granted the same voice box - we sounded identical. This has led, in the past, to some rather amusing phone conversations - even our parents occasionally get it wrong if we don't announce who we are at the start of a call. Highly entertaining if you have a devious mind.

But with every passing year, we have started to look more and more like each other. My hair has grown darker, my face has filled out slightly, I am wearing heels more often and am choosing my clothes more carefully. Every now and then I might even pass for a grown up.

All the same, I am still the younger sister. That is still clear, surely?

Apparently not.

This weekend my sister joined me at the Kabbalah Centre for Shabbat. I wish I'd had a hidden camera to film the response. We were wearing very similar clothes, our hair was almost the same, our height was similar due to my choice of heels. Yes, we looked the same - even down to the bags under our knackered (but beautiful blue) eyes.

Close friends who knew Nicola was coming by were stunned by the similarity, and then even more so when she started talking and sounded just like me.

One acquaintance stopped to have a quick conversation with me, then caught sight of my sister out of the corner of her eye and did a cartoon double take, jaw dropped as though caught up in a David Blaine illusion.

Yes, don't we look and sound the same, me and my lovely Big Sister.

And for a second I was so proud. Until a close friend innocently asked "So, which one of you is older?"

I nearly swallowed my own tongue. Ahem, excuse me?? What do you mean, "which one of you is older?" It's clearly bloody obvious which one of us is bloody older, my big bloody sister is bloody older. That's who's bloody older. I'm the little sister. I've always been the little sister. Look, see, I'm littler. I look like the little sister and I act like the little sister and I'm sure I told you last week that my big sister was coming down for Shabbat today. When was the last time you had an eye test, just out of curiosity? Is that labrador with you? What is this place, the RNIB?

Which one of you is older, I ask you.

Flaming cheek.

And for a while I was concerned - are my looks starting to fade? Has the fairytale ended already?

I console myself the only way I can - with pride that somehow, my Big Sister has started to look younger....

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Less Talk, More Action

The voice is back. Kind of. Enough to speak to my sister this morning, and enough to point out to my landlady that I thought that the new filter on her fish tank might be on too high a level, considering that every five seconds one of the four fishes was being blown sideways from one end of the tank to the other. Very visually amusing, but not much fun for the fish.

So my voice is different, and I believe that my words will be different too. It is only over the past couple of days, not being able to express every banal thought that entered my head, or contribute MY own experience to every conversation, that I have realised how many words I have wasted. I thought for a moment that I had exceeded my quota for this lifetime. Perish the thought.

Each of the meetings with my teacher I have wanted to focus on talking about me, me, me. MY process, MY experiences, MY thoughts. Okay, sure, let me hear about the energy of the week/month/holiday, just as long as we can quickly cover the latest of the dramas currently taking place in my life. I'll trade you. Through the Ego Workshop, I identified that I held a lot of Judgement - I compare myself to other people, judging them by my standards and myself by their achievements. And I look for recognition or approval from other people because I'm not certain that I am actually enough.

I am looking for my fulfilment in external things rather than building it from within. That explains a little why I like to try so many different, crazy things to make myself appear more interesting (white water rafting, land-yachting, bungee jumping, elephant riding, scuba diving, mountain trekking, skiing, flying a plane, flying a glider, water-skiing, trampolining) and why there is nothing more exhilarating than riding the biggest, fastest, wildest rollercoaster. (Aren't I fun? Aren't I daring? Do you like me now? Do you want to hear about the time I handled a tarantula or played with a meerkat?)

Unexpectedly, the need for external fulfilment now appears to have wained slightly, or perhaps something is just stronger within. Pesach seems to have spun an internal miracle.

By being silent for nearly three days, I painfully realised how many times I have paid lip service to what I was going to do, and avoided actually doing anything. I recognised that whilst I felt devoid of the recognition I felt I deserved from my teacher for 'working so hard on my process', that actually, what I have achieved isn't quite enough yet. And I don't mean that in a judgemental way, just in understanding that instead of wanting brownie points for generating my own inner miracles, I have to keep plugging away, doing more, listening more, applying myself more, learning more. And talking less.

Yesterday I received the outcome on the interview from last Thursday - I didn't get the job. They didn't think that my technical skills were good enough, they wanted somebody who could immediately get up to speed. Unable to even voice my frustration, I choked back some bitter tears. I know that I could have got up to speed really quickly. That job was meant for me - simply by the way it came to me. I thought I had done so well.

Later in the day, I re-read the email. And actually, it was quite polite. She said I would be an asset to their team, and that they would keep my CV on file. She said she would keep me in mind for any database roles. Once I took my pride out of the loop, I could see how they would want somebody with technical skills who could add to the role, rather than somebody who would spend the first few weeks with smoke coming out of her ears, trying to translate the syntax for every query.

Of course - because at the interview, for some bizarre reason (trying to show the best interest in the role I was interviewing for) I stated that training on a full time basis quickly became boring and I preferred the support roles. Like, duh. A bit of a silly thing to say, given that I know they have a training based role (which I would much rather do) coming up in the near future.

So, what were my choices? I could either believe that everything she said in the email was a lie and that she simply didn't like me, and walk the other way. Or I could email her and explain what I was really looking for, and possibly re-open a door. And I could properly revise my CV and seriously start looking for work elsewhere.

And when I am making the real effort and taking real action, the rewards are going to be much bigger than a few words of recognition from my teacher.