Journal Entry, Tues 1 Dec 2009:
Last Tuesday down to Cornwall, nice journey. Then Friday went to Penryn for interview with Kernow Coatings who make stuff to coat textiles, paper, and plastic films. Then when we returned home (Jean and I went round Truro) found an e-mail message from Gurit, inviting me to attend an interview on the Isle of Wight.
So I booked train and ferry tickets to West Cowes.
Today went to Jobcentre to ask about travel to interview funding – they will pay for Cornwall but not for the I-o-W because ‘We only reimburse travel costs within the UK, and that’s part of the Channel Isles’.
I did send an e-mail to Gurit pointing out that my technical background is sadly lacking in some of the aspects they consider essential.
Fri 4 Dec 2009
Yesterday went down to I-o-W and stayed in the Premier Inn, ready for my interview today at Gurit.
Arrived early at factory, gave them my powerpoint of postgrad research work. Still quite puzzled as to why they invited me since my background skills don’t match the job description.
Interview lasted over 2 hours (I was advised it would be a max of 90 mins).
Sun 6 Dec 2009
Earlier this morning I went to ye laundryette and while I was there, a chap came in with a basket of washing under one arm and a toddler – complete with dummy – in the other. Reminded me of baby Maggie in The Simpsons.
It’s been a lovely mild morning, some white blossom coming out on the trees down the road.
This afternoon went to see a film called ‘2012’ at the pictures. Talk about overblown nonsense. On R3, Aled Jones has just played a heavy gospel rock version of ‘Hallelujah’.
Tues 8 Dec 2009
Yesterday went to sign on at the jobcentre and had an unpleasant encounter with the lovely Maxine. (I had called them a week ago to explain that I was due to attend a job interview on I-o-W and would not be available to sign on as usual on Friday. ‘No problem’ they said. ‘Just call in as soon as you can.)
I sat at the desk and she snapped at me ‘You should have been here to sign on last Friday. What happened?’
I told her I’d been away on Friday at an interview on the Isle of Wight, which generated absolutely no response.
‘Have you got your jobsearch?’ I handed over the sheets and she glanced over them and said, ‘These are all two weeks old’. I said that I had been busy preparing for interviews around the UK, but she ignored me and kept typing, dismissing me nonchalantly so I had to reach across the desk to retrieve my papers.
Went to interview at Louvolite.
Printed off documents (Kernow Coatings interviews 1 and 2, Louvolite interview, Gurit interview e-mails, train tickets, hotel room booking, Jobcentre print outs from St Austell) to go with my letter of complaint.
Wed 9 Dec 2009
I realised last night that when I first started signing on, my claim advisor was the lovely Maxine – and after a few weeks, for no reason, I was shifted to the afternoon signing. Wonder why? Is she a bible-basher?
This morning went along to Travel-to-interview meeting with Ayshoo (actually v friendly and helpful) and Sharon (trainee).
Sharon watched as we went through the paperwork relating to my interview appointment, and asked, ‘but why does he need a train ticket for Thursday if the interview is on Friday?’
Originally they said that you can only claim for coach fares, but the journey takes so long that I would need to have overnight accommodation for two nights in order to attend the interview – so they approved the train (hurrah!)
She also asked, ‘If they offer you this post in Cornwall, will you consider relocating?’ and I was sorely tempted to say ‘No, I will spend eight hours each way commuting form here.’
Sun 27 Dec 2009
Andy and I have known each other since March ’93, and this is the first time we have spent Xmas together. Had champagne Kir cocktails, brunch and nibbles and two humungous turkey breasts for dinner. Watched loads of rubbish TV – Girls Aloud, Harry Potter, Incredibles, Love, Actually etc. Went with Andy to midnight mass at URC (St Trinian’s in Chorlton) – their version of ‘Silent Night’ has different words.
Sat 6 Feb 2021
Earlier this week Captain Tom Moore, legendary NHS fundraiser and knight of the realm, died aged 100 after contracting pneumonia and Covid-19.
Latest Covid figures:
US: 27.4 million cases, 471 thousand deaths
UK: 3.93 million cases, 112 thousand deaths
Journal Entry, Tues 8 Sept 2009
Today went to Liverpool to meet up with Elaba and her friend Helen. Texted her to say that I would meet them in Paddy’s Wigwam at about half-past one.
Arrived at the station and decided to pop into Lewis’s department store to look for a new wallet. As I was going down the stairs, I bumped into the pair of them coming up! Of all the stores in all the towns…
So we wandered round both Cathedrals (there’s a painting of a nude male in the Anglican one) and then went shopping, cos Elaine wanted to pick up all sorts of curry-making ingredients.
Sign on Friday – take evidence of job-hunting.
Logged onto Reed Scientific and found incredibly vague Development Chemist job.
Also in the Anglican Cathedral was an exhibition of wildlife photographs – magnificent shots from all around the world. I remember thinking that Dad would have enjoyed it.
Cathedral also heavily dedicated to Armed Forces.
Thurs 10 Sept
Yesterday went with Elaine and Helen to the Old Trafford Footie ground. Had the tour, wandered round town, dinner at Giorgio’s, drinks at Via.
Had three items of post – my HB application form, Manchester Uni application form and tickets for last week’s performance of ‘Prick Up Your Ears’. (HB = housing benefit, and the play tickets had been lost in the post so we ordered replacements).
V noisy here with builders downstairs drilling and banging away. Might go to the library to fill out my paperwork.
Fri 11 Sept
Went off to the library to fill in my application forms and came back home to find a lorry and earthmover in the front garden, so I was completely unable to get near the front door. Decided to hop on a bus to Bolton, had coffee and then got train back to Manchester.
Went to Abbey National and Britannia to get my passbooks updated, went to sign on (they actually asked to see my jobsearch!) and then minced off to Sale to register for HB.
Unlike previous occasion, I had to wait barely five minutes before being seen.
Meanwhile in the news Golden Brown has issued an apology to Alan Turing for the inhumane treatment he received after the war. Of course, the letters page in the Telegraph is full of scathing comments saying that we shouldn’t apologise for upholding the law as it then stood.
18 Sept 2009
Last night rang Eileen C & we had a good long natter – she said did I fancy coming out to lunch today with her and the DCC crew? So I caught the train to Wilmslow and met them in pub, said brief hello to Tim, Conrad and Justine.
Then went to the local Barnardo’s charity shop – they have a stack of mint-condition albums, ELO, Duran Duran, Yes. I purchased the Blue Oyster Cult live LP and ‘Tonic for the Troops’.
Fri 23 Oct 2009
Went to sign on – they have changed my time to 14.25 from 6 Nov, and on 7 Nov – Saturday! – I have to attend a ‘back to work’ session where I will learn all about how to apply for jobs.
Remember – don’t eat avocado stones, or they will hatch out in your stomach and send huge tough branches thrusting from your eye-sockets!