I woke up yesterday morning wrecking myself delightfully in bed. I was feeling very relaxed after the nice Sunday I had had. My stiff neck was doing better, especially after the treatment I gave it on Sunday, lots of warmth and some stretching exercises without forgetting a sparkling glass of champagne.
I finally got up and went to the kitchen to prepare my green smoothie with spinach, coriander, ginger, green lime and bananas. I got back to my bedroom with my smoothie and while I started sipping it delightfully, I decided to check my emails and appointments for the week. I was waiting for an important telephone call from the Job Agency. I had been waiting for contact from them since last Thursday …
After having finished checking my calendar I went back to the kitchen to prepare my morning cup of coffee. I turned on the machine, chose a coffee tab and pressed the “Start” button. I poured milk into the cup and was quite surprised with my “white” coffee. I just smirked looking on the counter at the coffee tab next to the coffee machine and restarted the process.
Thinking about the possibilities I had for my so called “professional” life I took a long shower. Yes, I know, sorry eco-friends, but sometimes… I even took the telephone and my cell phone to the bathroom to avoid missing the very important call. However, no one called. By that time my daughter was also ready and we decided to do our Monday groceries’ shopping. We drove our nice red car to the “green”supermarket… Well, if driving is already bad, let’t compensate it with buying ecological food. Maybe this way I can recover my lost point with the eco-friends.
In the supermarket we realized that they had changed the entrance, had rearranged the racks and that the supermarket looked nicer. This implied though that they had also changed the prices and not in a positive way for our wallets.
Having bought the necessary for cooking, we dropped by the “Getränkemarkt”. That’s like a store specialized in beverages. There you can buy soft drinks, water, juice, all kinds of beer and some snacks. We gave in our returnable bottles and even got 2 EUR back.
We were happy humming around some pop songs that we had just heard in the radio.
We were wondering because the parking lot, the supermarket and the street in general were empty for a Monday morning. We got in the car with our 2 EUR return ticket and I started the engine. I looked in the rear mirror and the way was free… We heard a loud “bang!” and I immediately stopped the car. A lady parking some 5 meters from our car looked at us in an outrageous way. Some other people parking about 10 meters behind our car also looked outraged in our direction… We got out of the car and… Yes, we immediately knew what had happened. I had hit one of the red and white metal poles that mark the entrance to the market. To my disgrace, the pole was standing and my car had lost its whole front part! That was the loud noise, the wrenched part was lying on the floor attached to only one screw. I tried to fix back in some way the loose end of the bumper so that I could park again. I managed to reattach it for about 2 seconds, which lasted exactly that long. At least we were now parking with the “hurt” part to the front. Some other people were walking by and they all looked outraged in our direction, as if we had destroyed national property or had hurt some people. But no, my car was broken and that was all that had happened. This is though a typical conduct in this country, they always look at you in a suspicious and judging way. Sometimes you ignore it because in time you have got used to it, but sometimes you would expect a kinder look or maybe a nice question: “May I help you? Is everything alright?” Well,maybe, if we had been in a bad situation… However, this didn’t look really dangerous, only a little funny. My daughter could at least laugh, while I tried to reach the insurance company. Fortunately, I had my insurance card with the phone numbers for an emergency written down. I tried the first number, which wasn’t active anymore… I tried the “Free call” number and after 3 or 4 minutes I got to the next hurdle, the first waiting line: “You have reached the Allianz Insurance Company” In case you need A, dial 1, if you need B, dial 2, if you need C, dial 3 and so on and so fort. When I got to the description that matched my case, I dialed the next number and waited… and waited… and waited… The weather was nice and I was sitting comfortably in the sun, I almost went back to the market to buy some coffee…
I finally got a person, not the next computer on the line, and he instructed me on what to do, this of course with my active help and active questions… He told me I should take my car to the mechanics… In this case I told him that it would be a brilliant idea, if I could drive my car… which I couldn’t. I remembered listening to our local radio station and having listened to a commercial of “Geissler Karroserie”, your partner in car problems, car body work and just very close to you”… Mmmm, true! They are just around the corner. I told the customer service employee on the phone that I could walk to the mechanics and ask them, if they could repair our car. He gave me his registration number and that was it. We explained the problem and with the help of one of the young mechanics I could drive the car to them and they even offered to drive us home. We had luck in our misfortune, or “Glück im Unglück”.
At home I noticed that I had a call from an unknown caller and remembered my long expected call. I looked for my emails, expecting to have a message from the Job Agency… Useless… I looked for the “Hotline” number of the Job Agency and dialed, this time with a glass of water. I had been waiting for about three minutes listening to a modern tone that was drilling in my ear, when my telephone suddenly died! I couldn’t believe it, we have had some problems with the phone lately, but now and at this moment?! In despair I had to look for the other telephone and started the same procedure. It took another 5 minutes to get through, but I managed to get a person on the phone and gave her the reason of my call…
We finally prepared our lunch, ecological tomatoes and onions for a Brazilian vinaigrette and a biological steak grilled on our “Barbie” grill… Yes, our grill is pink! 😉
After a delicious lunch I got to my desk and wanted to write… But the telephone rang and I saw the message “ unknown number” on the display… Cross your fingers, please… Yes, the Job Agency!
The well known voice of my so called coordinator or contact person asked me in an unfriendly manner: “Where are you?” I answered: “Errr, at home…” “I have been waiting for you, didn’t you listen to my message?”
Oh, my God! I then looked at my cell phone and during the whole incident with the car this lady had left a message on my mail voice. I told her my story which I’m not sure she believed… She wanted me to get there immediately, which of course, wasn’t possible due to my car… If I take the train it would take me more than an hour to get there and by that time the agency would be closed. I even offered to take a taxi, which she didn’t want me to do… So in her friendly way she asked me again, what I wanted. I repeated the same story I had sent her by email and the story I had told the lady on the phone, the one from the hotline… I wanted to meet her to discuss the possibility of getting a special course to modernize my IT skills so that I could have a better chance in getting a job in that area again. Her reaction: “Why do you want a course? You already know a lot… I see that you have already worked in the administration, even at the university. You don’t need to learn more, you need a job.”
I answered: “That’s it, I need a qualified job! I cannot find an adequate position and they don’t consider me for easy jobs. as you already mentioned I am qualified, but my IT skills are a little bit rusty” And then she told me: “ I don’t understand why you can’t get a job… Let me look at your file… Ah, yes, I know, you are old!”
How did the story end? Well, like in school, I have an appointment with this lady next week and I have to bring her all my documents from the last 5 months printed out: CV, letters of application and of course the letters of rejection from the companies I have applied to… I hope I get at least a good grade and maybe a star on my forehead like in Kindergarden… After one of those days, I really feel old…