Not sure how I feel about it yet
Posted Mar 16, 2019
Chez Sho we today received letters confirming that our applications for German citizenship have been approved.
In my municipality which is small and relatively poor, with a high proportion of refugees also applying for citizenship, they don't have ceremonies. You make an appointment, go down, pay your EUR 255 and collect a certificate. That's it. Tbh that's fine by me because I am still really boilingly bloody angry that I've had to do this. For the four of us that's a thousand euros. I'll send the bill to Nigel Farage.
And if we have to give up our British citizenship, that will be over 300 of your British quids each. That bill is going to Boris Johnson. or Rees-Mogg. They can afford it.
it feels like End Times
Posted Mar 9, 2019
Chez Sho each of us received a letter from the local municipality yesterday saying that the German government is giving all British citizens resident in Germany 3 months grace period in the case of a Hard Brexit* to submit an application to stay. Including a residence and work permit.
It's a 2 page form which is not onerous. But hopefully since we've all applied for German citizenship we won't need to.
*without withdrawal agreement
Moan, Moan, Gripe, Gripe
Posted Feb 2, 2019
I really don't want to snipe from the sidelines but last time I looked the talk was of an h2g2 anniversary meet in Manchester. Manchester is more easily accessible for people up north, and everything is always in London* and London is bloody expensive. And post Brexit, who knows if it will be even worse (having said that, if the pound does collapse it will be good for me. Sorry to gloat if that happens, but I will).
so London. OK. I book a hotel which is expensive but close to the pub. And then I look a little more closely at the pub. *le sigh*
I KNOW it's accessible and I KNOW it's "cheap" (for London) but really, I don't want to give money to that Brexit-Cheerleader. (suggesting I drink water or tea - as someone did - is well meaning but don't be surprised when I and then gripe some more)
And then I hear that "our benevolent owners" picked London because that's where they are. Oh will they take their ball back?
So now I am Very. Cross. Indeed.
*yes, I know, the sole UK h2g2 meet I've been to was in Manchester. And it was fab, and of course much easier for a lass from Sheffield. Still.
Sho's job: the final chapter
Posted Aug 3, 2018
So here it is. After 18 years I have finally taken the plunge and left the company I've bee working for.
In the end, although I was really really good at what I did and although I really really liked so many of the people there, I can see the direction it's headed and so it was time to go.
I actually gave notice in January and left on 31st May. And here's how it went:
In December we have an annual performance review. After all the extra work those of us who moved with the company put in (I was working 14 hour days right up to Christmas...) my expectation wasn't to get an "average" grade. (they have S - super fantastic; A - above expectations; B - expected performance; C - just about acceptable; D - not acceptable - these people usually have to leave)
I got a B. I objected and gave my reasons. but after about 2 weeks it was rejected and I got stuck with a B. Now in the normal course of things I'd not be too annoyed but this really really riled me up and chewed at me over Christmas. The company pay an annual "Peronal Incentive" - the level of this is determined by your grade. They also usually have a small pay increment which is usually inflation + delta (determined by your performance grade).
So you can probably imagine that after the mammoth task of losing 80% of our staff and training up new people (in my team only 3 out of 8 moved) not only in my team (accounting) but also sales & logistics and also being told constantly that it was our responsibility to make sure everything worked... Anyway. I chewed it over and decided to quit.
But what to do? I found out that I could do a qualification as a Teacher of English as a Foreign Language (CELTA) in Frankfurt, and that there were (month-long) courses in April and June. The last date I could work and keep the redundancy was 31st July with a 3 month notice period. I decided to go for the June course and so 31st March was the latest I could quit. But when I got back to work after New Year it was all too exciting and I only managed to hold out until about the 10th January.
I only told my boss and one member of my team. Boss told HR and within hours about 50 people had stopped by my desk to ask if it was true…
It was decided – although my team was understaffed – that my position would be filled internally since it was agreed that I was (in terms of experience and understanding of the job, which has developed with me) pretty much irreplaceable.
And that was pretty much it. I tried not to work more than 40 hours a week but I was averaging 55-60 between January and May. And then suddenly it was 16th May and my last day. They’d collected for me and bought me a personalised Bembel*, some Frankfurt Gin** and a photo album of my time at the company. We had a pretty good party from lunchtime until hometime and then that was that.
I went home and then the Chef and I went on a short holiday to Dresden and Leipzig (both well worth a visit) then back home to get my stuff ready for my CELTA (Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults) course. This is a whole separate journal entry though.
That took up the whole of June, then it was a quick trip to Hamburg to see Billy Joel and have a couple of days in the city before going back home to sign on as unemployed. Chef helped me – over two weeks – to pack up and empty my flat, and that was that. My year in Frankfurt was over, and I’m ready to start a new adventure.
Whatever that might be.
*The stone jug that people in Frankfurt use for their local brew (Apfelwein: it’s like cider)
**with a hint of apple in it
Sho and her job. Part the 47th.
Posted Jan 14, 2017
So many of you have lived with me whinging and whining about my job. I've now been there 17 years...
And here's the thing: i now have the chance to take redundancy *and I've turned it down* - in the short term. The company is moving to Frankfurt and I'm going with them as a weekly commuter. So there are a few things:
1) for the first time since I was 19 i get to live alone. All alone. with only me to blame for not tidying the kitchen or making a mess in the bathroom.
2) if I decide within 12 months that it's not working for me, I can take the redundancy anyway
but I'm still going to be doing the same job at the same company with (a lot of) the same people. So I'll still be moaning about it...