Monday - got called for three interviews, two of them from the same headhunter who called twice within an hour, for big prestigious/notorious (delete as applicable depending on whether you're a capitalist running dog or a leftie commie pinko subversive) strategy consultancies. Well, that was unexpected.
Even more unexpected, however: on Tuesday, I went to my former employers' 10th anniversary party at the Natural History Museum, mainly to catch up with ex-colleagues (and partake of free food and champagne). Two of my ex-colleagues were aware of one of my upcoming interviews, which of course, I'd only learned about myself the previous afternoon! My small world just ain't getting any bigger... Staffing manager also said to let him know my availability for freelance work.
I also had the first of those interviews on Tuesday afternoon. Seemed to go OK - chap said he'd forward me to client. The usual awkward conversation about salary expectations proved more amusing than usual: turned out the lowest grade they'd have in mind for me still paid about £6k p.a. more than my previous job. That'll do... Only thing is the other two are going to be truly brutal - heavily case study based - and they'll be next Thursday and Friday. Doesn't help my sister and her husband will be flying in on the Friday. Still, I've got a Renaissance reunion that evening - I'll definitely be up for a drink or several by that stage!
Next, today (Friday), I was down in Soho just about to have lunch with Sally when a chap I saw a week or so back called to ask about my availability for a freelance project, to be confirmed on Monday, hopefully. Then, just after lunch, another call, this time from Germany, again asking about availability for a project to be confirmed on Monday, starting on Tuesday if it proceeds. There was also some talk about a possible steady stream of UK work which would possibly mean me becoming the UK office...
Needless to say, the two projects clash. Pros and cons of each:
- UK: it'll be in Highgate (one Tube stop from home), it'll keep me employed for longer
- Germany: pays more per day, they're happy to work around my interview schedule, timing works better for a possible trip with my sister to Peru and, no kidding, the project is to perform a study of the entire spectrum of the "adult content" industry. Yes, it means exactly what you think it means!
Looking at the above, I'd have to do the German project, just for bragging rights alone! Of course, I also can't help but think of way too many Tour of Duty episodes I've watched recently where one character or another gets asked why he's re-upped for another tour...
New baby! Got a shiny new Sony Ericsson Z1010 3G phone to take part in a 3G trial. I actually missed the delivery on Monday but actually arranged to pick it up from the courier's depot a 90 minute round trip away (even though I had an interview that day) just so I could have it with me when I went to my former employer's party! Main reason is I recall winding up a whole bunch of people when I started that job because I was the only one on the GPRS trial Orange was running back then. Yes, I am petty as well as geeky!
Must admit I had mixed feelings when I saw it was a Sony Ericsson. Bad news: it isn't a Nokia. Good news: it isn't a Motorola. Spec-wise, it's great: GSM900/1800/UMTS, Bluetooth, Memory Stick Duo slot, etc. UI-wise, it's just about adequate. The PC sync software is driving me up the wall, however. I have had woefully little success in getting the damned thing to sync to either the desktop or laptop using anything other than infrared - USB hardly ever works, Bluetooth has never worked yet :-( Overall: usual Ericsson thing of great tech and specs, mediocre usability. Still, it could be worse - if it was a Motorola, it'd probably have good specs, crap build quality and even worse usability.