Thursday, April 01, 2004

Day four, natives restless but providing superb cuisine. Strange wingless bird seen in sky and mighty thunder-lizard spotted across the wasteland. Water plentiful and morale good despite defections.

Or in tranlsation, we are still enjoying the settling in process, except for Charles who seems to have found something new to complain about every hour on the hour since he got here on Monday morning. The catering facilities are up and running very nicely, with an exquisite range of sausage baguettes that we thought we ought to try this morning. 25p more expensive than Alberts, but about £2.50 better tasting. I finally got something slightly more exciting than the side of the football stadium to look at this morning when an army helicopter flew in, landed on the pitch and then departed. Ans we didn't hear a thing which proves the double glazing to be eefective at any rate. Then at lunch time a large percentage of the office (but not me) wandered over to the station to see the first train in the new "One" livery arrive. As of today our rail services come under a new operating franchise, but it seems they have chosen a truly dreadful colour scheme to go with the daft name.

Yesterday was Mike's last official day working for us (he was back at his desk this morning, but in his new guise as a temporary contract/consultant type person). We all went up to PJ McGinty's Irish bar in town for a Thai meal (in their cunningly named McGinThai restaurant) to wish him on his way. And very tasty it was too. Although I only opted for the stir-fry in Oyster sauce which tasted just like it had come from the Magic Wok at the end of our street rather than the spicier choices at least I didn't go for the burger and chips option followed by several of the party. It was a good meal in good company and naturally the talk turned to all the other people who have been through the team in the last 14+ years he had worked here. Scary how many people have been and gone just in the last 6 since I started. We then dragged him back here for his formal presentation and gift giving (we gave him a load of plants, he gave all the management team something suitable including a can of shit for Peter the marketing manager and a spinning top for Mitchell, king of the corporate spin). He also then declaimed a bit about the move here being a bad one and the structure changes taking us all downhill. Not the best way to leave you remembered favourably it has to be said.

Otherwise it has been the usual round of fiddling with timetables, spending money on adverts and repairs and generally getting to know this place. I also now know who I am up against for my interview (1 external, 1 from education transport - but his interview is not until the 20th rather than next week). I guess with two vacancies and only three candidates I have a pretty good chance! And it could be interesting either way with the education guy as they will be sharing this end of the office with us by then so he will then spend the next couple of years either resenting us or being resented by them for deserting. Still not 100% sure I want to do the job, or that I have enough skills to get me it in the first place (especially now we apparently have to be competency based in everything we do) but I feel it is time for a change and the extra money would be nice.

After turning down the interview offer with the dentist because the pay was far too low, Joan has her interview for the job at Ipswich tomorrow. I have the afternoon off to take her as they have decided to hold them in Sudbury of all places. Still, the meeting I was supposed to be at in the morning has been cancelled so I will at least be able to leave this week with many loose ends tied rather than flapping.

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