Oxford To Bristol

Quite a few people who know me and read this are already aware of what is going on but this sort of thing requires documenting I think and so the rest of you have this to read. It’s usually around the time of my birthday I am planning a trip away, I was in fact doing this but but everything went on hold because of a significant change in my life. Allow me just a sec to turn back the clock three weeks or so.

April 8th I was asked into a meeting with the development manager and two other high up bods along with the other contractor, from that moment I felt something was up. I was told that a few deals had fallen through and the company were going to have to make some cuts and of course contractors are the first to go. We were told that we had 1 week of work left and then our contract was technically over. This may sound a bit harsh but it is the risk that I run being a contract developer. The money is a great deal more but the security is really not there at all and I have been fully aware of this since day one. But here is how I look at it, I was supposed to be at the company for just two months and here I am 13 months later still here, of course I was hoping for another 6 months or so but that’s the way the cookie crumbles. I was sad to have to leave, the team I work with were great, work was sometimes challenging and I knew and understood the system. Plus I am still paying off the credit card from buying a new bike so loosing a job did not come at a good time, but then when does it?

Interesting enough I spoke to my counsellor to tell him that we are going to have to end the sessions. We spoke quite a lot that session about how much easier I find to adapt to this change compared to ones I am more emotionally attached to. It all seemed very much a ‘matter of fact’ and in the same week I chose to tell the people who run the flat I have been renting that I will be leaving. I did mention that I never really felt like Oxford was home, it was just home for now although this did mean that on the 11th of May not only would I turn 40 but also potentially have no job or place to live.

So for the past 3 weeks things have been crazy, I officially finished on the 15th April and I began that week to find new work, doing things like updating my profile & CV in various places and letting recruiters know that I am very interested in new opportunities. I was in London on 17th-19th where I had a permanent job interview that really liked me but I did not really want to take the job as it was not a job I could of put my whole self into which for me is so important these days. On the 23rd I headed back into London to stay with a friend who invited me to the Peak District with them. One of my little things I have tried to do since I got back from my travels is just say “yes” to more things. So even though I was out of work a chance to travel up there and stay in a B&B run by a family friend of my friend for a very cheap price I was only too happy to accept. Just days before the trip my phone started ringing a lot with recruiters trying to get me a position. By the time I was in the peaceful peaks I had already had an initial telephone chat with a company in Bristol, followed by a telephone interview for the same company and an arranged final for the beginning of this week (Apr 27th).

On Tuesday (28th) I had another telephone interview with position in London which went very well they wanted to arrange a face to face with me on Wednesday. Then there was another position in Fleet who wanted to talk to me later in the day. I went out to get some bits done and while I was out the Bristol job called and confirmed that they wanted me. This means that I had to then get back to the others to politely turn them down and spend the next 2 days in a slightly stressed state waiting for contracts to hit my inbox. So this means that I was going to have to arrange and move to Bristol in a super fast time as the job starts on 5th May. On 2nd May I headed into Bristol armed with 4 places to see and made a choice which means I should be able to move in on 9th or 10th. Before then I have arranged temporary accommodation until the 7th which leaves me a day where I am homeless but that should be sorted out easily.

I feel (somehow) Bristol is a positive move for me. It’s more money and less rent for starters. I never felt like I fitted into Oxford, everybody dresses and acts very Oxford which makes me uncomfortable, that is probably an odd thing to say but I can’t really describe it any other way. Only time will tell but today is all about moving forward and the rest of this week is going to be all about not messing it up.

Love and rockets
– Chris

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