Thursday, January 26, 2012
Beachcombing and Jobs
Yesterday I went back to the Thames at low tide, to pick up a few more interesting bits of pottery and such on the beach at Bankside. (Nothing valuable or very interesting, I hasten to add, for the benefit of any authorities reading my blog.) I am such a beachcomber. I could do it for hours.
Afterwards I walked to St. Paul's, on the north side of the Thames, and then to the Tower of London a bit farther downstream. I tried to do some photography but the weather wasn't great -- the skies were gray and leaden -- and that part of town just isn't very inspiring to me. It's very businessy, full of banks and office towers. I dunno. Maybe I just wasn't in the mood.
I've been looking at job listings online, but I haven't seen anything very promising. The journalism jobs all seem to involve covering either markets or specific technologies, neither of which I'm equipped to do. (Or want to do, for that matter.) Of course, those are the jobs that require very specific experience, the ones that need to be advertised. There may be other jobs out there that are more general, but that begs the question: Do I want to return to reporting, chasing ambulances and working nights? Could I even do it in this environment, where the government structure is a mystery to me and I don't yet know the subtleties of the culture?
Other writing jobs seem geared toward technical writing and that sort of thing, where I have no experience. I'm continuing to look, but I'm still uncertain about my place in the current economy. Do my talents and training have any value anymore? Or are there so many people out there who can write and gather information -- "citizen journalists," and other media people squeezed out of disappearing jobs -- that what I used to provide for a fee can now be had for nothing?
I have no teaching experience. I have no retail experience -- at least, not since college. Many job types seem the domain of various groups -- Eastern Europeans, for example, make up so much of the food service industry that it's been the subject of articles in the newspaper. (Besides, I'm not yet to the point where I feel like I have to take any job, at McDonald's or the grocery store. My time is more valuable to me than that.)
I've applied for three jobs since I got here -- one a temporary position -- and all three came to naught. It's not like I've been plastering London with resumes, and maybe I should be. Or maybe I should turn away from all that and continue finding a way to work for myself as a photographer and/or writer.
As you can see, there are more questions than answers!
(Photo: An alley in the old City of London, yesterday. I liked the bright pink trash bag amid an otherwise dark scene.)