Wednesday, December 30, 2009

The Noughties

For lack of anything else to post about (my brain has gone into hibernation for the past week or so), here's my past decade year by year. Details are slightly sketchy but it's been fun trying to dredge them up!

At this point in my life I was quite career focused, so my highlight of the year was landing a job as PR Manager at a high-tech company in Ottawa, Canada. I was excited to leave my former job at a hectic PR agency behind and work in-house at a firm with lots of perks (soft drinks in the fridge; free bagels every Friday and a fooz ball table? Heaven -- not to mention the increased salary). I was well on my way to corporate happiness.

In retrospect, I probably should have stayed at the agency as the variety of working with different clients was actually something I enjoyed, and I quickly found myself feeling a bit bored in my little beige cubicle. I had great colleagues and the company was brilliant, but... surely this couldn't be it for the rest of my life?

I quit my job and moved to Poland to teach English. I'd always wanted to live in Europe and my growing boredom (along with a new and crazed CEO) at the company meant the timing was perfect. What did I have to lose?

It was one of the best decisions I ever made. I loved Poland and the people I met there, and moving on my own to a country I'd never been to gave me a massive boost of confidence.

A year of travel, from Gdansk to Budapest to Wales and back again.

Finally tiring of gallivanting around Europe, I decided the time had come to think about my future. I enrolled in a Bachelor of Education programme at the University of Ottawa and moved back to Canada to renew my life at home.

I tried to get excited about staying in Canada, but I wasn't ready to 'settle down' (and it was too bloody cold, anyway!). So I packed yet again and moved to London to teach.

This year is a bit of a blur, filled mainly with adjusting to the harsh reality of UK classrooms and drinking half a bottle of wine every night in an effort to cope. The best bits were the holidays -- trips to Paris and Spain helped me make it through!

Another muddled year as I tried to come to terms with what the heck I wanted to be doing over here in the UK (because teaching certainly wasn't it). I tried my hand at teacher recruitment, which I enjoyed but still couldn't see myself doing long-term.

The highlight of this year was quitting my job and deciding to try to make it as a writer. There were many factors that lead me to this point and although at the time they weren't exactly welcome, I can only be thankful now for the part they played in helping me come to this decision.

Revelling in the freedom of being my own boss; seeing daylight; and being able to go outside whenever I wanted! It was a great feeling to create; to use my mind for something other than benefiting the bottom line.

My previous post says it all (and now I'm getting lazy; this has been much harder than I thought it would be!).

Bring on the next decade!

1 comment:

Karen Jones Gowen said...

This is your gift and talent--to be able to cram so much that could be said into a few pithy statements. Which is why 24 Hours London is so good. And why this post was fascinating to read. You have a wonderful career ahead of you as a writer. Very interesting to read about your journey.