Sunday, 6 December 2009

Sunday 6am life assessment

As you may have guessed, Sw. Mikołai did not visit my flat to grant my wishes this year (I blame lack of chimney).

I can't sleep, and since it's Sunday morning, I have at least 24 hours before I can do anything pro-active.

I do not want to spend another six months translating at home in Brussels.

It's not that I don't like the city. I actually feel pretty at home here. And please don't tell me I'm just being negative. I am not a negative person. I have been an ex-pat on and off since 2002 and I know the Happy Strategies: I go running, I exercise regularly, I play music, I listen to music, I joined a choir, I take the scary or miserable parts of my life and I fashion them into amusing little blog posts to make myself laugh at things that would otherwise probably have me cowering under my desk in despair. I look at the tiny things, the leaves and the sunshine in the park and I think how lucky I am to be here. I hate it when people who have easy jobs and have never moved out of their home town talk about how they can't stand 'negative people'. Everyone is sad sometimes and that's human.

But: I don't want to sit here alone, waiting for the possibility of a hypothetical exam.

I'm not the most extroverted person, but I am a human being and I like contact with people. I like solitude but I am not happy that it has become the norm for me to go for whole days without speaking to anyone. I can't do this for another six months. It feels wrong, it feels as though I am fighting against the current and I don't know what to do.

I know that I am lonely and unhappy and I can't bear the thought of another six months of the same.

There is no shame in admitting that things are not going to plan.

Since I can't call my parents at this time of the morning, I am turning to you, O oracle of the internet: tell me what to do!

17 comments:

Aidan said...

I was tempted to go on a rant about how negative people were underrated, and invoke some comparison to negative numbers, but then I had flashbacks to checking my back balance on South Street, and thought better of it.

What's the case for staying on? Unless it's pretty damn compelling, it sounds like you've already figured things out.

Aidan said...

'Back' = 'bank'.

pinolona said...

I understood :) Although I never checked my bank balance on South Street: I was too scared...
Actually trying to get a job or at least freelance work at the EU institutions is a pretty compelling reason for an interpreter to stay in Brussels. Buuuuuuut - and maybe you can give me some idea of the logic/probability in this case - it's a slim possibility of a very high reward as opposed to going back to England or Poland for a higher likelihood of a lower reward level doing something totally different.
What do you reckon, Dr Aidan, give me your philosophical advice...

Laura and Ben said...

Oh no. I totally understand how you feel. Do you fancy meeting up for a drink or something next week? It would be nice to speak to someone who isn't Ben.

Anyway, my email address is lauraevegraham at gmail dot com, so let me know.

Aidan said...

Hmm, I see. That's tricky. I try not to give advice on such matters, given that I'll very soon have spent 23 years continuously in full-time education only to face one of the worst job markets in my field in decades.

That said, it depends on how much lower the lower reward level is. Six months is a long time to be unhappy (especially if it's a gamble), but if it gives you a shot at something you're going to seriously regret not having giving your all for a very long time, then it's probably worth gritting your teeth, and learning to convince yourself that watching Paul Rudd movies can constitute a healthy social life. On the other hand, if you think you'd be quite content doing something else back home or in Poland - it's not your top choice, but it's something you can pretty happily see yourself doing - then you should tell Paul Rudd to piss off. So how do you feel about your other options?

Anonymous said...

Pinolona you want too much too early. Open a language school in Krakow, Warsaw (bc. many poeple wanat to learn languages there) or in London, and be happy. Brr-ussels is not good for you.

Jobs in the EU beurocracy are only for family members and friends of the politicians. It is a Coterie.

Island1 said...

Working at home on your own is a killer. It's almost driven me loopy over the past two years. Some people would question the "almost." If you ever do find a solution let me know.

pinolona said...

what I need are crazy Polish neighbours to watch on the other side of the street... (http://polandian.home.pl/index.php/2009/11/30/rear-krakow-window/)

ps d'ye like the way I got a Polandian plug into that one? :)

pps trip do Polski planned for mid-Jan, possibly including day in Warsaw, whaddya think, blog meet?? the last one must have been good given the state of me in the morning...

dragondays said...

Agree with Anon ... forget working within the Institutions here in Bx, unless you have some mega contacts ... everyone I know who works in them were dying to get in, and once there, are now dying to escape.

PS I am not working for the EU!

Lilacspecs said...

I totally understand how you feel, but I imagine you have the qualifications to find a more sociable job in Brussels. Also, I was going to ask a few Brussels bloggers I know if they wanted to go to Carnival in Aalst this February. You'd be more than welcome to join us!

Island1 said...

Smoothly done.

Talk of another blog meet has reared it's finely chiseled head recently. Theoretically it should be down here in Krakow since the last 74 have been in Warsaw

pinolona said...

great!! I'm totally in favour of a blog meet in Kraków. Awesome. I would so come back for that (ok, not just for that, it would be for 'work' purposes obviously) but still...

scatts said...

Oy! Wasn't the last blog-meet in Krakow? Or was the one that never happened? I forget now. Krakow's a good idea anyway. When. Let's do it. This is an emergency - Pino is upset and needs cheery blogtypefolk around her ASAP!!

Pino. I have way too much real and emotional content to catch up with here. I'll have to try and do it in parts.

PART 1 - You need to leave Brussels. It's not good for you. I would suggest Poland (again).

Anonymous said...

Pino, start hugging everybody, like Polish used to do:) And find some people to waste time with them. It's really simple, especially for somebody who writes such cool blog:)

Michael Dembinski said...

Blogmeet - wheresoever it be, I shall be there.

Island1 said...

Scatts: No, that was my wedding, it just looked like a blog meet.

Let's take this into the realm of email.

pinolona said...

no! no, please continue to converse on my blog... I like the company... no - don't go, wait!!