Happy Birthday to Me! Eh...

Trip Start Dec 01, 2008
Trip End May 21, 2009

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Sunday, January 18, 2009

On Wednesday, the day after Samia came to visit, I lost my job.  It's pretty pathetic when a pub can't even keep temporary backpacker staff on.  They basically decided to hire part timers because they are cheaper. Part-timers work 15 hours a week to pay for board.  The company doesn't pay them anything and they work to what amounts to more money in board payment.  We get 33 pounds a week taken out in rent.  They end up working about 80-90 pounds which is still a deal for the area.

Of course, they hired these people and I helped train them without anyone bothering to tell me.  When I could have had 2-3 weeks to job search, I was given one before they kicked me out of the housing.  They also never offered part-time to me.

Luckily, my boss had a few numbers of other Sam Smith pubs that were hiring.  2 ended up being useless and the 3rd called me for an interview and my boss gave me a good recommendation.

On Friday, I travelled the hour and 15 minutes to Richmond, the last stop on the District line but still (barely) in London.  Instead of high buildings, people in business suits and lots and lots of noise, this pub/inn faced a meadow that looked onto the Thames.  It was quiet, down the road about a kilometer from town.  Even though it's "in" London, it acts like a suburb having it's own town center.  I was given the job, moved in Sunday to start Monday.

When I came back Friday night, my boss bitched me out for not informing him I had the job.  He was kind of drunk and I hadn't gotten the job until 7pm and hadn't seen him yet.  Apparently, I'm an ingrate and a stupid backpacker who doesn't think before they act.  All because I didn't tell the guy who fired me that I had a job because "he was worried."  He almost kicked me out of Friday night drinks saying I shouldn't be allowed to have any.  Now, these Friday night drinks come from our tip money that we pool and don't get back.  But according to him, I wouldn't have a job if it wasn't for him and his glowing recommendation.  He doesn't seem to care that I've effectively been removed from everyone I know in London.  Moving an hour out to a pub whose busiest day is Sunday (the Cittie of Yorke was closed on Sundays), and doesn't have as many hours is hardly a great deal and I probably won't see anyone from the pub anymore.

Annnd, I got to move on my birthday.  How exciting!  I've bought quite a bit since getting here including bulky house-y things like pillows and have acquired 5 books which meant the two bags I dragged from Gatwick wouldn't work this time.  I had to make two trips.  Luckily, I went to handicap accessible tube stations that had elevators or it would have sucked more.  Also, my roommate did take me out for Thai food (my new favorite thing) before I moved out.  She was the other person who was laid off and she spent the rest of the day packing.

I'm actually a bit glad I left now.  Some of the part timers don't seem like they'll fit in very well.  They also seriously pissed off the other full timers.  We work also with a married couple who were being trained to be managers.  They were told last week that the pub would be bringing in an all new couple to be managers.  At least they get to keep their jobs.  But still, they know the pub 10x better than anyone and are great people that would actually BE good managers.  Anyways, looks like it's going downhill.  Not that I want to stick around for anymore drunken outbursts from my boss.  It was about the most unbosslike thing I've ever witnessed to just bitch out someone in front of everyone else about something that I had planned on telling him that night anyways.

So now, I'm at the Rose of York instead of the Cittie of Yorke.  I'm the only live-in as the other girl abruptly quit last night.  I have a whole kitchen and a single room.  Next week, I'll get the other girl's room as it's bigger with a double bed.

It's quiet all the time.  My manager's complained about not having slept last night because of the rain.  Hah!  And, I actually work with English people and actual English people come into the pub.  That's a change of pace.  I also have a lot more time.  I'll only be working about 30 hours this week.  It sucks but since I'm on the 9-3 shift, I have huge chunks of time free.  I won't know what to do with myself.  No more split shifts!

So basically, my birthday sucked.  At least I have a job so I can keep saving money.  Right now, my plan goes something like this.

April 1-9 - My parents come to visit.  We'll be going to daytrips to Stonehenge, Glastonbury, Oxford, and the Cotswolds.
April 9-25 - Currently unplanned but I'd like to spend time with Prague and Munich as base cities.  From there, I'll take daytrips out to the bone church at Kutna Hora, a monastery where monks brew beer in Germany, and Dachau, the first concentration camp.
April 26th-May 3rd - I booked a super cheap trip to the Scottish Highlands.  It's a backpacker tour seeing Loch Ness, the Isle of Skye and lots of naturey things.  I've also built in a couple of days in Edinburgh.
May 3rd-May 21st - Tim flies into London.  We'll spend 2 days in London.  Get over jet lag.  Then fly into Pisa.  From there it's Cinque Terre. To Florence.  To Assisi.  To Orvieto. Then to Rome, with a 2 day trip out to Naples and Pompeii.  I still have to book tickets and hostels.
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