Monday, 17 December 2012
Saturday, 15 December 2012
Well, as you can see from the photo, I was unsuccessful on this occasion. I was too nervous. I thought the report would be much worse but I knew early on I wasn't as good as I can be and I couldn't relax as a result. I missed a couple of gears because of not letting the clutch up enough and letting the engine over-rev causing me to think I was in the wrong gear. I didn't give enough clearance to stationary vehicles. Moving off and roundabouts were not too bad but the marks together with other faults could've failed me anyway. I didn't move off at a set of traffic lights and obstructed traffic. He gave me my only pink for that. But one pink is a failure even if all the other sections were fine. My instructor said he'd seen worse sheets after a test even from some people who have their own cars. Mirrors, understanding traffic controls and right of way were all faultless on the sheet. At least it was a proper fail and not one mistake and the tester was totally fair an impartial.
Friday, 14 December 2012
Wednesday, 12 December 2012
Later on I had "one of those moments". There's one in every lesson. I was trying to do a hill start when some eejit in a big old Toyota Land Cruiser parked right in front of me. My instructor told me let it roll back a bit in first with the clutch fully in to give myself space. This caused me to over rev with the clutch pedal partly pressed when I got going again. There was a horrible smell of burning clutch as a result. Normally I have a tendency to let the clutch pedal up too quickly! He also took me through the same junction that he obstructed my clutch control the last day. I completed it with aplomb this time. A boat parked on the side of the street was an obstacle we had to negotiate. Yes, you read right, a boat, it was on a trailer. Some of the tight twisty streets in Waterford mean I really have to lean forward and back because the front right pillar on the car causes an awkward blind spot, and that's in normal forward driving!
I also went on to the 80kph speed limit dual carriageway for a while just in case the tester might want to see how confident I am on the open road getting up to 5th gear, and see how comfortable I am at slowing down from those speeds.
My next lesson is Friday. I hope I remember to look and signal correctly and not be so jerky with the clutch and brake when I'm taking my test Saturday.
Monday, 10 December 2012
It seems that styles from the late 1970s to early 1980s are making a comeback in men's fashion trends. I see a lot of corduroy jeans and teacher jackets (the ones with the leather elbows) and patterned man cardigans in the shops along with more natural, earthly browns and greens and cream tones. One I remember well from my childhood, because I used to own one, was the duffle coat. Just out of curiosity, I decided to see what the price of them would be. I was quite surprised to see an €80 price tag on one in Dunnes stores. I thought to myself that I wouldn't have expected to see that price on them in Debenhams. Oh how wrong I was! Thinking I'd see similar prices, I decided to see. I strolled across from Dunnes in City Square shopping centre in Waterford, through Kylemore café and into the menswear section of Debenhams. They were as much as a shocking €197 in Debenhams.
Today I wanted to walk off a big dinner so decided to take a stroll around Waterford. The duffle coats entered my mind again. So I decided to sample the menswear section of the main clothes shops and compare prices. I went to Dunnes and Debenhams first to remind me of the prices. Then it was into Pennys where you can get them for €45. After that it was back to City Square to see what River Island had to offer. They have them for a pretty steep €114. Then I thought of Tk maxx. That would be my final stop on the duffle coat price comparison. Tk maxx normally do fairly upmarket labels at fairly affordable prices, but you wouldn't expect them to price as low as Dunnes because of the fact that they are high street labels rather than department store commissioned brands. To my surprise, it turns out that you can buy a duffle coat in Tk maxx for a mere €69.99. That is €10.01 LESS than Dunnes! How about that?!
The verdict is that Pennys is the cheapest but, going on label and build quality, Tk maxx is probably the best value for money. So if you're someone who always likes to be on trend and you don't mind going all 70s/80s in your appearance, a duffle coat is bang on trend and will keep you warm. But I know that we're all a little stretched for cash these days and doubly so at this time of year. So your best option is to go to Tk maxx for a quality product at the right price (ironically Dunnes' goal). But if that's beyond your budget Pennys is a useful option. You'll only be wearing it until the spring and you might be following a different trend next winter. So it might not need to be as durable as the fashion label option.
I'm not trying to muscle in on any fashion blogger's territory or promote or put you off any of the shops mentioned in this blog post. I tweeted the results earlier today and my sister called me a fashion blogger teasing. But it put the idea in my head that this would be something interesting to write about... so I did!
Today's lesson went well but I just keep forgetting things because I don't have a car to practice with. I only drive when I'm getting lessons. My instructor doesn't expect me to pass Saturday but he says I'm close. I still haven't got everything together. There are just a few things that haven't clicked into place yet. It'll be a silly mistake that will fail me, in my opinion, not a lack of ability to drive. I'm kind of on the limit of listening to my instructor to tell me what to do and wanting to do it myself. Sometimes, because I get a bit tense in certain situations, he assumes this means I might need coaching so he speaks. This causes me to wait for his instruction so I stop doing what I'm supposed to be doing, usually at the worst possible time. If he'd let me go and do it and I make a mistake, it's ok, I can learn from that. But if he let me go I'm more likely to get it mostly right and he can tell me after the lights/junction/roundabout how I can do it better next time, AFTER we've cleared the hazard. Him speaking to me just before a lights/junction/roundabout makes me hesitate so I don't react in time and makes me more panicky and driving gets more jerky.
Today I stalled at a junction because I forgot to put the clutch pedal down and was probably in the wrong gear anyway. So later on I was in full control at another junction and I wanted to let the clutch pedal up to move a bit further and my instructor had the pedal fully down. It flustered me a bit and I tensed up again because I was no longer in control of the car. I told him this. If he'd left me alone to negotiate the junction it would've been alot smoother. He claimed his foot got in the way by accident, but I doubt it. His clutch and break override the ones on my side and when I needed to let the pedal up to move the car on it stayed to the floor. I think we should practice pulling in, moving off and entering parking spaces more next lesson. My next lesson is Wednesday. I hope to get at least one more lesson after that before my test.
Tuesday, 4 December 2012
This is volume 2 of the book Ballylongford - A Photographic Memoir by Nancy McAuliffe. My dad is in it twice. There is one of him as a teenager in front of his home in Ballyline with 3 other young children. There is another of him in a football team photo. The football one is familiar to me because I first saw it as a child. In volume 1 there are photos of the old girls school which show my aunt Mary but my mom's name is in the text underneath. My mom is correctly mentioned in volume 2. Both volumes are great historic photographic references of my home village of Ballylongford in Co. Kerry. I'll post more photos on the Ballylongford ex-pats facebook page later.
Thursday, 15 November 2012
Monday, 12 November 2012
I got a letter from the road safety authority today. I have an appointment for a driving test. I'm not ready at all. I'll get in touch with my driving instructor and get advice on how to proceed. I need to get my learner permit renewed and take more lessons.
Sunday, 11 November 2012
Friday, 9 November 2012
I went home and tried to go and amazingly there was a bit of a flow! I had a long overdue breakfast at around 4:10 in the evening after drinking plenty water. There wasn't much of a flow but I managed to go twice more. I'll keep drinking fluids and keep trying like the doctor said. If I experience any pain over the weekend the doctor told me where the out of hours caredoc place is and I have their number anyway.
I never got the prescription tablets. I'm just going to try to wind down from the stress of this week on my own. Also if I do experience worse symptoms I don't want to be too chilled out or drowsy to do anything about it. Maybe I would have relaxed enough to function properly if I'd taken them. But I don't want to depend on pills for emotional stability. I'd rather get that from a nice girlfriend. I'm looking if there are any nice ladies out there!
Wednesday, 24 October 2012
When I asked for advice recently on applying for a job that I may not be experienced for I was told to have an excellent cover letter. But as I was writing the email I decided on a different strategy. I didn't give much away so that they would at least have to look at my CV. I once was hired for a job that wasn't advertised because the work came up after I was interviewed and they needed someone straight away. I had the necessary experience for the job they hired me for, not the job I was interviewed for. So if the company that I sent the CV to today see my CV they might keep it on record for future reference. Or a suitable job might come up that they need someone for in a hurry. Hopefully something will come up soon. I'll keep looking and keep applying.
Tuesday, 23 October 2012
Thursday, 18 October 2012
I missed the chance to get into a decent 3D CAD course run by a 3rd level institution because I discovered it too late. It was free to people on jobseekers allowance. It started at the end of September and I didn't know about it until the 2nd week of October. It would have given a major boost to my chances of employment. I applied for another 3D CAD course today, that is not starting until March. It's not ideal but it'll improve on what I already know. At least if I don't find any job in the mean time I should have that to fall back on. But I need something now. I'm caught in a trap now.
My savings will have run out by the end of the month. My last chance to look for work beyond Ireland is slipping away because I can't afford to relocate anymore. I can't get work here because employers keep IGNORING what is a professionally prepared, up to date CV with references. I have got calls from Canada, The Netherlands and the UK, so I know my CV is up to scratch. I had to let the Canada idea go months ago because of money issues to allow myself to keep the UK and Europe open as options. Europe is out now and the UK is slipping away fast. I can't afford to get out now. So I'm caught in an unemployment trap. Can't get a job anywhere and where there has been interest, I can't afford to go there anymore.
Today was a particularly depressing day. The Mercedes formula 1 team tweeted that they were giving graduates the chance to get work experience in formula 1. It's not fair because I'm not an academic. I didn't go to college. The conventional education system does not suit everyone. I'm at least at the same level as the best of those graduates in specific roles. I want to learn on the job and not sitting in a classroom doing theory. Some of the anti social behaviour that students get up to can be a nightmare for families and professionals living near student accomodation yet they can always look forward to the best jobs if they have the right piece of paper in their possession after college. All my learning is just as relevant as theirs but I don't have their piece of paper so I can't get a job without the right kind of experience. But it's a catch 22. How can I get the experience if companies won't give me a chance? I have sent CVs to Formula 1 teams and tried to fill out applications and kept an eye on the motorsports jobs market. So It's not like I haven't tried. Life is so unfair. I am very jealous of those young people who are going to be handed my dream job and I'm not ashamed to admit it.
Wednesday, 10 October 2012
Previously I spoke of how the current AMG Mercedes F1 team evolved from the Tyrrell team and the modern Lotus team evolved from the Toleman team. I would just like to say again that I'm writing from memory rather than reference, so forgive me if I'm not 100% accurate. This time I would like to outline how the Scuderia Torro Rosso and Force India evolved from 2 former teams.
Some time around the 1980s, if memory serves me correctly, an Italian Formula 1 team called Minardi was formed. They were always minnows. But always managed to turn up year after year when bigger teams such as Brabham and Lotus eventullay folded. They never won races and always seemed to be bringing up the rear. Even a Ferrari engine deal in the 1990s didn't push them as far up the grid as one would expect. So points to Minardi were like podiums to mid-grid teams. But it was a good proving ground for the likes of Giancarlo Fisichella and Fernando Alonso who made their respective debuts with the team. In the early 2000s Australian Paul Stoddart took over the team and it became European Minardi, named after Stoddart's European Airlines I suspect. A noticeable result for European Minardi was Mark Webber's impressive 5th place debut in his and Stoddart's home Grand Prix. But it was to prove a one-off and Minardi were soon back in their usual positions at the back end of the grid. Stoddart seemed to be constantly at odds with the FIA and eventually sold the team to Red Bull when rules governing the running of junior teams were relaxed. Red Bull had it's own works team and European Minardi became Scuderia Torro Rosso. It made better progress up the grid under Red bull ownership and with Gerhard Berger as team principal, took it's first pole and first win at a rainy Monza in September 2008. Sebastian Vettel was the driver in the winning car that weekend. Eventually Vettel was promoted to the works team and the conveyor of Red Bull young driver talent was blooded in the team. But just as they seemed to be making more and more progress and coming closer to further podiums with Sebastien Buemi and Jaimie Algersuari, Red Bull decided to continue with it's development driver program and dropped Buemi and Algersuari for debutant Jean-Eric Vergne and Daniel Ricciardo moving from HRT. So their push for the front has been halted by driver development programs, but it is now, effectively, being run as an independent team under current regulations. That is how Minardi evolved into Scuderia Torro Rosso.
In 1990, after success in the lower formulas, Irishman Eddie Jordan set up a Formula 1 team. They made their race debut at Phoenix Arizona in the opening Grand Prix of 1991 with green 7up livery. Bertrand Gachot and Andrea de Cesaris were the drivers. They scored their first points with a double points finish in Canada that year. Gachot got himself arrested for assaulting a taxi driver and Jordan needed a replacement for the Belgium Grand Prix at Spa. Michael Schumacher made his debut in F1. He qualified well but did not last a single lap of the race with a burned out clutch. In the same race de Cesaris could have finished 2nd but for (correct me if I'm wrong) a gearbox failure near the end. Schumacher impressed enough to be whisked away to Benetton for the very next race with Roberto Moreno swapping to Jordan to soften the blow. They finished an impressive 5th in the constructors in their debut year. The following year was not so good under yamaha power. The yamahas were ditched in favour of Hart engines and in 1994 Rubens Barrichello took the team's first podium in Japan and first pole in Spa. They had a works Peugeot engine deal from 1995 and took a double podium in Canada. In 1997 they finally had a package together that could potentially win races. But rookies Ralf Schumacher and Giancarlo Fisichella's tempestuous relationship after a collision in Argentina overshadowed things a bit that year. The team scored podiums in Argentina and Canada and Fisichella came close to victory in Germany but a puncture ruined his race. Fisichella went to Benetton the following year and Damon Hill replaced him. Alain prost got Peugeots for his team and Jordan switched to Mugen-Honda. Jordan had their best year to date with Hill taking their first victory at Spa and Schumacher following him home in 2nd. Then Schumacher left to join Williams and was replaced by Heinz-Harald Frentzen for 1999. Frentzen took victories at France (with a fractured leg) in the rain and a bone dry Monza after Hakkinen made a mistake and spun off. Jordan was always known as a talent spotter and in the opening race of the '99 season RTE pit lane reporter Declan Quigley saw it as "a victory for the Jordan school of excellence" because all points scorers in that race had either raced or tested for Jordan at some stage in their career. Frentzen led the Jordan team to third in both the Drivers and Constructors championships that year. A joint works Honda engine deal with BAR was worked out for 2000 and the team went for a revolutionary rather than evolutionary car with the EJ10. Jarno Trulli often qualified well in the car but sometimes complained that reliability issues meant he had to nurse the car to the finish line which cost them points. The Honda deal was under threat from 2001 and Eddie Jordan took on Japanese driver Takumo Sato Mid season in 2002 (I think) to please Honda.. The fans at the German Grand Prix expressed their anger at Jordan for axing Frentzen. The Honda deal was lost anyway and Cosworth and Toyota engines had to be bought, putting financial pressure on the team. They had one more fortuitous victory at Brazil in 2003 when a crash brought out the red flag. The race was initially awarded to Raikkonen, but Fisichella (returning to Jordan that year) was found to be leading at the end of the lap before the red flag. He was awarded the trophy in a ceremony before the following San Marino Grand prix. It was to be Jordan's final victory. Eddie Jordan sold the team to the Midland Group at the end of the following year. They had one final year as Jordan in 2005 and Tiago Montiero took their final podium at Indianapolis when all the Michelin teams pulled out before the start due to safety concerns. Only the 6 Bridgestone-shod cars started the race. Midland changed the name of the Team to MF1 the following year. A lack of investment meant little success. Spyker then took over the team and were also a back of the grid team. Eventually Indian Vijay Mallya took over the team and changed the name to Force India. Fisichella returned for a third term at the team that was once Jordan. They have managed some of the success of the old Jordan team and are strong in mid grid with current drivers Paul Di Resta and Nico Hulkenburg. They share some technology with McLaren and have Mercedes Engines which makes them a strong prospect in future. So that is how the old Jordan team evolved into Force India.
Whether you believe in evolution and reincarnation or not in nature and everyday life, it certainly can happen with the right business deals and personnel in place in Formula1.
I hope you enjoyed reading my 2-part synopsis of the evolution of some of Formula 1's well known teams as much as I enjoyed writing it.
Monday, 8 October 2012
I'm writing this information from memory so forgive me if it is not 100% correct. I was writing a bit of this on my facebook page and decided to do a blog about the evolution of Formula 1 teams.
Towards the end of the 1960s Ken Tyrell ran privately entered Matra and March Formula 1 cars with Jackie Stewart in the cockpit. Jackie Stewart won the drivers world championship in 1969 in a Matra entered by Ken Tyrell. It was powered by a Cosworth DFV engine. Matra wanted to run their own engine program and so Ken Tyrrell, having a lot more faith in Ford Cosworth, decided to run his own team. Tyrrell won the double, Drivers and Constructors, in 1971. It turned out to be Tyrell's one and only Constructors championship win with Jackie Stewart taking his 2nd Drivers title. Stewart's final title came in 1973 for Tyrrell and he retired at the end of the season. Tyrrell stayed in Formula 1 and sold his team to British American Tobacco around 1997. It had one more season as Tyrrell in 1998 before changing it's name to British American Racing. From 1999 it had former world champion Jacques Villeneuve at the wheel. They never won a Championship with him. Eventually Honda and Jenson Button came on stream. As car manufacturers started to invest more in the sport of Formula 1 racing, Honda invested enough that they were able to take over and eventually rename the team. So BAR became BAR Honda and eventually just Honda. In 2008 economic conditions were in decline and Honda had "My Earth Dream" logo on it's cars, without any major sponsors. It decided to pull out of the sport altogether before the 2009 season as a result. The cars were essentially already built, such was the lateness of Honda's withdrawal. Former Ferrari man Ross Brawn took over the team and they bacame the Brawn Formula 1 team. They decided to modify the back of the cars so that Mercedes engines could be put in them. This wasn't the only thing about the back. They exploited a loophole in new diffuser regulations to give their car better downforce, and so better cornering speeds. This was already done while Honda were still involved. So with experienced campaigners Jenson Button and Rubens Barrichello, they took their 1 and only Drivers (Button) and Constructors Championship. Brawn subsequently sold the team to Mercedes who dropped the Brawn name. With Button gone to McLaren, Michael Schumacher was coaxed out of retirement and Nico Rosberg replaced Barrichello. Mercedes eventually added its AMG brand to the team and that is how the current Mercedes evolved from Tyrrell.
In 1984 a certain Ayrton Senna made his Formula1 debut with the Toleman team. He almost won the rain-soaked Monaco Grand Prix that year but it was Red Flagged early due to the conditions and Alain Prost was awarded it. Senna went to Lotus the following year and eventually Benetton took over Toleman. They won races with the likes of Gerhard Berger and Nelson Piquet. But they did not taste World Championship success until Michael Schumacher took the drivers titles in 1994 and '95. They had Ford power in '94 and won the Constructors in '95 with Renault power. Renault pulled out of Formula 1 in 1998 but continued selling engines to Formula 1 teams. Eventually they returned as an official engine supplier and invested back in the Benetton team. They invested enough to change the name to Renault after that and won titles in 2005 and 2006 with Fernando Alonso. Alonso left for Mclaren and returned after a year and left again to join Ferrari but apart from the odd race win, no more titles came and Renault again pulled out. The Renault name stayed with the team for a couple of more years. In the meantime a team owned by Malaysian Tony Fernandes started a new Lotus team. The rights to the name and the road car company were under different ownership and Fernandes bought the Lotus name. The owners of the Lotus car manufacturers had invested in the current Renault formula 1 team and wanted to have Lotus as their team name as well. After lots of legal wrangling Lotus changed it's name to Caterham and the former Renault team now took over the Lotus name. Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean are the current drivers, both returning to Formula 1 after absence. That is how the modern Lotus team evolved from the original Toleman team, which Senna left to join the original Lotus team ironically...!.
I'll do something similar with Minardi and Jordan in the future.
Friday, 5 October 2012
These are my new glasses. I got them in optical express. To be honest, they were a lot more expensive than I would have liked. I went for an eye test just under 2 weeks ago as much to check the health of the eyes as to replace my old glasses which had flaws in the lenses. My perscription had changed a bit as well. They confused my eyes a bit because of the right needing to be a bit more adjusted than the left. I'm wearing them now as I write this and there is that slight strain of a new perscription lens, but I need to get used to them. I'll keep the old ones as spares for an emergency. The old ones didn't have the focal point of the lens centred correctly to my eyes. But I got used to them and have them 2 years. The other thing when I first started wearing the old ones was the frames dug into the side of my head behind my ears and had to go back to specsavers to have them stretched out to relieve that. The new frames felt comfortable instantly when I tried them on today in optical express. The only issue will be getting used to the new lens strength and differently (hopefully better) centred focal points.
I like the new spectacles so far. But I don't expect to go to that much expense again. I won't say how much they were but they were too expensive. So I'll shop around and price lenses before committing to an optician when my next eye test is due.
Friday, 28 September 2012
This setback only spurred me on to check the job sections of other F1 teams' websites. I submitted my name in another team's website. But I registered through facebook months ago and I'm not too keen on mixing business with facebook. It also means they have to ask me for a copy of my latest CV. My facebook page is not something to inspire potential employers to hire me. It's a place for family, friends and entertainment only.
While I'm between jobs I would like to do a Fás course simply because it would fill a gap in my CV and I'd be better off than the dole financially. But there is a waiting list for what is suitable and those don't start for a few months. I have a meeting on Tuesday with Waterford Employment Services to discuss course options.
I recently gave my CV to a local recruitment agency as well. They had a job in Dublin in mind for me but I got a call from them today to say that the company in Dublin is not interested in me. It's the old catch 22. Can't get a job due to lack of experience. Can't get experience because I can't get a job. I wish a company would take me on and give me proper training and experience in programming. I can program CNC machines. I just need experience to build up confidence, competence and versatility required by companies.
This was as much of a rant to vent frustration at companies lack of faith in me as it was an update on my progress.
Wednesday, 22 August 2012
Here's how I worked it out. If you have 3 operatives doing a 39hr week with each doing 6hrs overtime at time and a half one out of every 3 Saturdays that gives you a wage bill of €507 x 3operatives for Mon. to Fri.coming to €1521 plus 1 operative doing 6hrs x 1.5 for overtime on Saturday coming to €90 gives a total wage bill of €1611 per week for 123hrs. That averages out at €13.10 per hr per week to the nearest cent. Now if you take my 5-cycle system and pay operatives €10 per hr and even give them x 1.3 shift to entice people to take the job. Paying them for the average weekly hours worked so that they get the same pay every week means they get €300 x 1.3 shift. That gives a total wage bill of €390 x 5 operatives = €1950 for 153hrs. That averages out at €12.75 per hour per week to the nearest cent. So overall my 5-cycle system would work out better if a company could implement it because it's averaging less cost per hour on wages but getting more production hours every week. In a high pressure working environment that would feel like an impossible maths problem for me. But when I'm in the comfort of my armchair and have the time to logically work things out, I can put my mind to it and complete the task.
Sunday, 19 August 2012
#disclaimer: this is merely a humourous passage that the blogger thought would go well with the photo. Please do not attempt surgery at home.
Wednesday, 15 August 2012
I have a question for people like me who only have a passing interest in soccer and are not major fans. Did the English Priemiership start too soon after the Olympics? After the European Championships already this summer and the great London games it's hard to maintain an interest at that level in any other sport. We need a break from high level sport for a while. What do you think? You can comment opinions here or give me your opinion on twitter.
Saturday, 11 August 2012
Thursday, 9 August 2012
She's so brilliant! She was happily chatting with her worthy opponent in the final - Ochigava, after the medal ceremony. So grounded. Congratulations must also go to her Dad and trainer Peter. Hopefully it'll spur on our other boxers fighting for medals. It was a very tactical victory and a scrappy last round. But thankfully the result went as expected. Congratulations Katie. But before I sign off I must mention Cian O'Conner. He took a well deserved bronze in the showjumping.
Monday, 23 July 2012
Monday, 2 July 2012
This is a Mazak Super Quickturn 200 MSY CNC turning centre. It has live tooling and a Y-axis. It has a Mazatrol 640t controller. It is the machine I work with in my new job. I also do some limited operating on a Hurco CNC milling machine, but that's just basically loading and unloading parts and pressing "cycle start". The bulk of my work involves the turning. It's only a temporary position but it's a job. I work the weekend shift, Friday to Sunday, 3 x 12hrs. I prefer it to a Monday to Friday job and it's definitely better than nights. I don't know if there will be any further work once the stuff I was hired for is finished. Unlikely, but at least I have a chance of a call back in the future if he gets a new machine in and further work. Plus it's experience I can add to my C.V. anyway.
Sunday, 17 June 2012
So I went to Shannon for a job interview on Friday. As with most interviews, it seemed to go well but there was one part I could have done better in and maybe projected a little more confidence in that situation. In terms of what he's looking for, I do have a certain level of experience. He has a Mazak turning centre which uses a Mazatrol 640 controller. The Mazak Integrex I worked with in my previous job had the more modern Mazatrol 640mt pro controller and the tool turret was different. But I should be able to adapt. I recognised one of the guys working there. He did the same computer-aided engineering course that I did. So that also gives me confidence that my level of qualifications and experience are up to the requirements of the job. I've been out of work for 3 months though and that means I'm a bit rusty and it does put a dent in my confidence. I need to have more faith in my own ability. The programme is a Mazatrol CNC programme (conversational).
Wednesday, 13 June 2012
This is the view from my apartment. Thankfully it's not like that today. This photo was taken on a day of particularly heavy rain. The building to the right is Dooley's hotel. The building on the hill in the distance is what I'm told used to be a hotel. Never been up there. Just a little snippet of boring Waterford.
Tuesday, 12 June 2012
Monday, 11 June 2012
Wednesday, 30 May 2012
Went to the doctor yesterday and she gave me antibiotics for a chest infection. Don't know how I could have got it but whatever it was spread from my sinuses. Read the leaflet with the tablets because I always like to know if there are any possible side effects. One potential side effect could be dizziness. I might not take one before my driving lesson tomorrow as a result.
Got a call this morning from a guy who got my number from linkedin. That site works - who knew?! I certainly entertained thoughts of giving it up before. It was so out of the blue (the call) that I feel a bit unprepared if I have to go for an interview. I know what I must do to be prepared. I must do what I said I'd do regarding studying my cnc notes and checking out what companies have and what they do with it. Anyway this guy that called suggested putting myself out there as a private limited contractor, or something like that. But that involves doing my own tax and PRSI. I'm not prepared to do that. The PAYE method suits me fine at the moment. If I had a car and enough experience I'd try the PLC route. But it's not practical for me at the moment. It would also make going back on social welfare between contracts more complicated. That's my thinking anyway. I got a letter from a company in Middleton, Cork that interviewed me. I knew it was bad news once I got a letter. Such a pity. I'll keep trying.
I just used google feedback to suggest fixing it so that bloggers in Ireland can post from mobile phones.
That's all for now. I hope to put photos in posts again in the future.
Saturday, 26 May 2012
The job search isn't going too well. I got one interview last month and no follow up. I was looking into Canada but finances mean I have one opportunity left, and if nothing comes from that I'll give up on it unless I get temporary employment before the end of this year. The UK and an English-speaking job in Europe are still options if an opportunity presents itself. I could also consider internships through the Job-Bridge program if I get a CNC related position or similar. That would be nice if I can't get any proper employment in the mean time because it would get me training and experience that I still seem to be lacking. I might look into a complete change in career. I have ideas for that but limited options. We'll see how things pan out.
Another way of making myself more employable is going for a driving licence almost 20 years after I became the age to apply. It was one of those things that I kept procrastinating. I finally arranged driving lessons yesterday and I start Monday morning. That will open up opportunities for me beyond factory work... I hope! I checked my learner permit as well and it expires October of this year so I have to take lessons before it's too late. I've driven tractors and forklifts before, so it should give me a good basis from which to start. But the things that I'm most anxious about when it comes to learning to drive a car are: a) maintaining concentration, b) being aware enough of my surroundings and, to a lesser extent, c) having the coordination for the gear changes. The guy that's going to be teaching me is fully registered with D.I.R. Ireland and the Road Safety Authority and his driving school claims to have a good pass rate for the driving test on it's website. So hopefully I made the right choice.