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Belgrade is singing my song

I've not been a guest at a comics convention out of the country before. This year is my first; Grrr, a comics convention in Belgrade, Serbia, at the begininning of next month. Last night, I read the eccentric guidebook crazycrone gave me (she's a guest, too! Yay!). This lunchtime, I bought a tiny sleeping bag. Monday night I spent going over flights on lastminute.com. Why have you not bought your plane ticket yet, then, Jeremy? Ah, now, that's complicated.

You see, the convention runs from Sat 2 Oct - Mon 4 Oct. Coincidentally, my POW is being Ofsteded the week beginning the 4th. Now, I could go for half the convention -- coming back on the Monday, when the inspectors certainly won't have time to see me. I've already cleared that with my boss. But if I do that, I miss the excursion to the artists village on Monday, and the end-of-convention wrap-up, fun stuff, essentially. If the inspectors want to see me at all it's probably going to be on the big meeting on the Wednesday or on the Thursday. It should be fine for me to spend Tuesday travelling back and then join the inspection for the latter part of the week.

I need to buy my plane ticket, but that "probably", that "should be fine" -- it's causing me grief.

I told C. (my co-worker) about it and she harrumphed. "Life wasn't meant to be easy," she said. It's one of the standard things you say to a kid who isn't getting their way. Who's been forbidden a treat. It's a simple statement, but there's a lot encoded into it; that (paid) work matters, that the other things you want to do is a toy, a game, a hobby. An indulgence. Plenty of people don't do much outside their work; and there's a strong (and reasonable) argument that if your extra-curricular activities are interfering with your work, you should quit one or the other. How much does that extra day at Grrr mean to me? Is it just an indulgence? ... but, on the other hand, they may not even to want to see me. There's a very good chance that if I go back on the Monday I will spend Tuesday, sat at my desk, feeling resentful, waiting for a meeting that never comes.

Damn, my nose is bleeding. I'm trying to look at it as just another choice, but it keeps turning into a life decision.

Mood of Google: I'm in a state of bliss, I'm out of a job.

Oh ho-ho. That second one is from "Singin' in the Rain" ... I can practically sing along to that scene. The next thing Cosmo Brown says is "Now I can start suffering and write that symphony." Two minutes later, he has his job back. "Cheers R.F.," he says, "Now I can stop suffering and write that symphony".

Smart movie, that.


( 18 worms — Feed the birds )
15th Sep, 2004 09:53 (UTC)
When you go, report on whether it looks anything like Joe Sacco's drawings or not. ;-)
15th Sep, 2004 10:20 (UTC)
I'll be doing
some of my own, I shouldn't wonder.
15th Sep, 2004 10:45 (UTC)
Stay for the Tuesday. Fuck the job. Everyone needs a holiday. They'll cope.
15th Sep, 2004 11:20 (UTC)
My sentiments exactly. Life before Job, always! I'm sure they wring way more than their moneysworth out of you,anyway, and if you rush back, yes, you will be left sitting stewing all day Tuesday...Have you tried getting a flight with JAT, btw? They only have one flight a day, which deposits you IN Belgrade at about 17:30, and back at Heathrow around 13:45...
C, of course, is seething with bitter & twisted envy.
15th Sep, 2004 17:34 (UTC)
might go JAT
although there seem to be quite a few options, current plan is Belgrade late afternoon thurs, back to Heathrow on that 1.45 flight, on tuesday ...

C's OK, she's just v. busy with stuff right now. She also thinks I oughta jack in the job and go freelance. Easy for her to say ...
15th Sep, 2004 11:06 (UTC)
Oh, that mood of Google is too good
C is a mean moralistic so and so. (She may be nice too, I'm not saying she isn't.) That's a narrow protestant work ethic sort of reply which hides the feeling that 'I don't do that, so why would you want to do that except as a self-indulgent luxury'.

Contrast that to our supplier P2K whose main contact with us (ie the guy who's meant to fix all the issues, but who actually screws things up plentifully too -- but of course he's the only one who can deal with it nevertheless) is permanently not available to our satisfaction. We agreed he would be available to come to our workplace on Friday this week and Monday next (he supplied the dates, not us). Now it turns out he can't be present physically, and on Monday he's actually going to be in France, at the other end of a high-speed link. Worse than useless. Presumably that was approved by his bosses, and that screws us up a lot more than by the sounds of it your slightly-extended leave might do...
15th Sep, 2004 17:35 (UTC)
yeah, I worry
that I worry too much ...
15th Sep, 2004 13:07 (UTC)
Humph! I assume that the convention is coming out of your annual leave, so you have a right to it! Being invited to Serbia as a guest sounds like an amazing experience and one you should absolutely make the most of. It's hardly as though your POW will collapse without you...or as though they pay you enough to make you give up things which really matter.

It's a job. They give you a certain amount of holiday. You're entitled to enjoy it. And if C. had booked an expensive foreign holiday, she wouldn't want to cancel it for the inspection, I bet you. The mere fact that you haven't committed money to the trip doesn't make it any less important to you. Being more charitable, maybe she had a bad day or recently was denied something she really wanted.

Oops, just remembered that my boss will be reading this. Um. I did lots of work today, I really did.
15th Sep, 2004 17:37 (UTC)
yes, it's open
everyone relevant at work knows what the situation is or will do so shortly. You're pretty much bang on about everything there -- oh, and you did loads of work today. I can vouch for it. I was there ;)
15th Sep, 2004 13:43 (UTC)
Go to the con; you have to be able to take your holiday at some point.
15th Sep, 2004 13:55 (UTC)
oooooh, that sort of thing
makes me livid. I wonder how many people get to their death beds and lament "ooooh, I wish I'd spent more time at the office."
15th Sep, 2004 17:38 (UTC)
with torrid office romances, maybe?
15th Sep, 2004 18:39 (UTC)
Re: people
ew -torrid? think of the poor cleaners... no one thinks of the poor cleaners.
16th Sep, 2004 02:18 (UTC)
poor cleaners
ours don't do much cleaning anyway, they'd probably have to do their own mopping up ...
18th Sep, 2004 04:13 (UTC)
As someone who's just started a permanent full-time expected-to-take-it-seriously job I think that's an excellent point. I shall remember that.
16th Sep, 2004 01:56 (UTC)
Speaking as an appalling workaholic, I say go! As Ingaborg says, it's coming out of your annual leave, and no one is going to die if they have to wait a day to see you at work.
As for Inspectors meetings, these things tend to overrun anyway. Even if they had penciled you in to be seen on Tuesday, there'll be delays that mean they have to push back your inspection till Wednesday anyway.
They'll be hanging around all week from what you've said, if they desperately need to see you, I'm sure it won't be a big deal if they have to wait another day, I doubt they care what day of the week it happens.

The only exception to this is if you sense some really bad shit going down where you work, (slashy redundancies and potential victimization,) and you were uber keen on your job. Bad shit is mercifully rare, so I'm assuming it's not relevant to your situation. (But I had to throw it in as devils advocate.)
16th Sep, 2004 02:17 (UTC)
good for you
--- I was hoping someone would be a devil's advocate. Bad shit may indeed occur ... but, *shrug*
16th Sep, 2004 04:32 (UTC)
Re: Glum...
Bad shit may occur, I was hoping you wouldn't say that.
( 18 worms — Feed the birds )