Week Seven

At midday on the Monday morning I received an email from The Royal London Borough of Richmond Upon Thames saying that my application had not been successful. I was disappointed but still had other options so it wasn’t a complete disaster. I suppose it was a bit na├»ve to expect to get the first job that I applied for.

The Royal Mail, Virgin, and the extras work didn’t reply at all that week, but by the time I went to see Frank on the Thursday to sign on, I had plenty to write about in my looking for work booklet. And for the first time, it was all true. I told Frank about not getting the interview and in return, got the expected response of “There are a lot of people looking for work at the moment, it’s tough out there”. He saw that I’d applied for other jobs and that I had an interview with an education employment agency the following day. Frank looked pleased and wished me luck, and I headed out of the job centre knowing that I may never return…

My appointment to see Dennis was at 10am on the Friday morning. I was up and about early and got to see the rest of the house leaving for work for the first time in ages. It was cold outside, but if you stood in the sun long enough it would gently warm you, so on the way to the bus stop I avoided the shade. I caught the 65 to Ealing, then a tube one stop to Boston Manor. The building I was looking for was just outside the station, across the road to the right. Just like Dennis had said it would be. I get anxious about getting anxious but managed to control it as I walked into Dennis’ office. I shook Dennis’ hand and had a brief, informal interview with him. It all went horribly wrong but Dennis told me that because I had the NVQ level 3 and a heap of experience, he’d be happy to except me. His advice was to be more confident in interviews, and big myself up more as I clearly had the knowledge and the know-how. He then handed me eight forms to fill in and the paperwork for my CRB check.
“I’m just going to pop downstairs, I’ll be back in five minutes to collect the paperwork”
Five minutes! I got straight to it and was making good time until a forty something English teacher sat opposite me and preceded to complain about her past employment. She finished her paperwork before me, even though she had started after me. Her short statement [I had to write a short description of my abilities etc] was written without looking up and while she was still moaning, and was a good twenty or so lines long. Mine clocked in at about four. She finished and left the room, which meant I could get on with it without disruption. It had been fifteen minutes since Dennis had left me, so I rushed my brief description, and as I marked the tittle at the end of the sentence, Dennis appeared.
“All done?”
I handed him my paperwork and he said they would be in touch once they had checked out my references and my CRB had been approved.

The sun had warmed the streets of West London enough for me to take my jacket off. I put it into my bag, and smiled all the way home, pleased that something had finally gone my way.