Alexandra's Notebook

A Job is a Job

I've had an amazing number and array of jobs over the years, starting with what I guess is a rite of passage for any kid born in the UK pre 80s — that of paper delivery kid. Like many, it was my first real job that I got paid for by someone not a family member. A job I took very seriously at the time, never missing a day regardless of what the weather threw at me.

I loved that job, being up at an ungodly hour before the rest of the world, being out on the streets on my bike riding like a crazy, despite the weight of newspapers I had to deliver. I got so good at doing my one paper round that I ended up doing 2 back to back, and eventually did the Sundays as well. Earning myself enough to buy myself things I had only dreamed of.

I kept those paper rounds right up until just before I left home and signed up to join the military. Supplemented by then, with a job working behind the cheese and cooked meats counter at Littlewood. Which saw me through a very long angsty summer of discontent at home. I was ever thankful to get out of the house every day, and also get paid for escaping.

And then ... then I joined the Women's Royal Air Force and trained to be an air traffic controller. Me? Can you believe it? The naive paper kid had enough brains to scrape in under the radar (do you like the pun?)

I did several years in the military and not all of them in the fish bowl tower directing traffic. I work a lot more in Operations and Intel till burn out finally took it's toll. And despite good references and taking a spot in Civil Aviation, I only lasted months in the real world working at West Drayton. The stress was something I was just not ready for.

At this point I was ready for a different less stressful job and life, and so after a couple of years back at college retraining in a number of disciplines, including computing, I had a lucky break and found I had a skill I could make my own, and became a compositor for a design and publishing company. Moving into a whole new direction, one that gave me the opportunity to upgrade my skill set again, with a move down to London. Where I worked for several months as a nobody in publishing doing all the scut work.

What came next, as a result of putting in the hours, was my dream job and move, and I found myself working in New York. I worked there, in publishing, for 3 years before finally, due to my dad's cancer, returning to the UK.

I've been luckier than most landing in the right place at the right time to have been able to do some amazing jobs, and meeting some fantastic people along the way. And my time in the States? Will be something I'll treasure and remember for the rest of my life.

So if you get a chance to do something new, and different, don't hold yourself back with self doubt, go for it. Jump in, I say, with both feet and give it a go. Even in failure, you'll learn something and you'll have experiences you would never normally have had otherwise.

I know I did.

Thanks for reading, Alex

#Memory Lane #Musings