24 November 2005

Waiting for the teleconference about our work unit’s future, I couldn’t concentrate on much. The main task I’m doing relies on help from an expert in Netherlands and he wasn’t available today. I did a bit more research into it and got a bit nearer to understanding it, but not enough to solve the problem, so it’ll have to wait till he comes back.

The teleconference was to have been 11, but was postponed till 1. Eventually it came and it wasn’t good news. A lot of jobs are going, most of us will have to apply for restructured posts, except some that are ‘ring-fenced’. My manager’s manager, one of the best people I’ve ever worked for, is being moved to another job and my immediate manager, whom I also like and respect, may not be my manager much longer either. Some people may be able to get voluntary redundancy or early retirement. A structure chart and more detail were to be issued at 5pm. Feeling despondent  I went and looked at what I’d get if I went for voluntary redundancy. Whether it was because I was still reeling from the announcement, or just sheer greed, but I let an eBay auction in which I’d bid days ago get a little out of hand, and bought a Fernandez Sustainer guitar. Ulp!  I felt a little sick. It was one of those auctions where you’re winning by a mile for days then in the last five minutes hell breaks loose, probably automated bids. Anyway, I’ve wanted one for yonks and now it’s mine. May I do something useful with it.

My manager then phoned, privately this time, to tell me my job was one of the ones that was ‘ring-fenced’ – in other words I was in no danger of losing my job. But whether the job will be worth staying in is another matter. Well, I’ve been very happy there for about five years now, so I can’t complain (but will!).

The expected email never came at 5, and I went into a frenzy of putting stuff up for sale on eBay and Amazon Marketplace so that when the moment came to tell Madame about the guitar I would have some line of defence. She wasn’t at all put out except to point out the lack of space and where was I going to put another guitar? (Three hanging on my study wall and two more under the bed).  Aha, I said, when I get the new one I’ll be selling the Telecaster, so no extra space needed. Oh sure, says she.

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