Apology Sandwiches, Zombie Interviews, and a Grown-Ass Job

Let me tell you the harrowing tale of how I got my real life, grown-up job in London. It went like this:

I was still living in France when I realised that, if I didn’t want to be completely destitute on my arrival to England, it was about time I started job hunting (groan). So, being the crazy tech-savy Millennial that everyone claims me to be, I took to twitter and began sending my CV out for anything that remotely fit what I was looking for.

I got one response.

Asking me to come for an interview two days later.

Yes, I was still living in France.

Mortgaging my non-existent home, I bought the cheapest flight I could find (yea, it wasn’t so cheap) and set off with an outfit I’d scrounged from the back of my wardrobe and pretended that smoothing with my hand would get the creases out.

My flight was supposed to leave at ten pm… two hours and a free apology sandwich later, we were still waiting to board. We wouldn’t be landing until 1am. My interview was at 9:30 the next morning.

It was 2:30 by the time I made it to Victoria station. Not knowing where I was or what kind of public transport I could take, I paid a taxi 50 pounds to take me to my hostel. My heart sank a little lower with each tick of the counter, until it was lying in my stomach, slowly corroding in the anxiety juices. But at least I made it mostly intact.

I was a nervous zombie by the time my interview came around, inventing new words and agreeing that yes, my accent is very weird, and yes, my love of YA does explain my strange hair. At one point my interviewer left the room and I was given ten minutes to complete a task on excel. On his return I hadn’t done anything except stare at the screen and drink the water he’d provided.

Needless to say I came out feeling not so hot. So I was super amazed when I found out I’d landed a second interview! (I’m still not convinced that they didn’t get me mixed up with someone else, that interview was just ridiculously shocking). This interview was via skype (I wasn’t about to fly in again. Blegh!) and I presented ten titles with accompanying slides. I thought it went alright.

I didn’t land the second interview.

But the dream wasn’t over, as I was referred to a different position in an adjoining department. This time round was a lot less scary (probably because I’d actually slept). The spookiest bit came when I was sitting opposite my two interviewers and, without preparation, was told “sell us a book”. In a spot of blind panic I chose The Lie Tree, and you know what? I sold the shit out of that book. And then I landed the shit out of that job. Hooray! I doubt I have worked for anything so hard in my life –nor been so petrified!

I guess this is the story of good things happening, and then bad things, and then good things. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about my life, nothing’s ever easy… but things just kind of work their way out??

Anyway, my job is great, so it was well worth the trouble. Thank goodness. Imagine if I hated it after all that!

My other London adventures can be found here:

Foxes, Aussies, and Making Pals
A Cat, A Princess, And an Ill-Fitting Dress


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