Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The world is turning but I'm standing still..

...and what a strange feeling this is! Its the first time since I've been working that I haven't had any money to buy presents (or anything other than food for my animals). Robynne and boyfriend haven't got money other than for necessities and all around us - jingle, sparkle and manic spend, spend, spend!

I went through to Sandton for an interview yesterday and afterwards rather wished I hadn't. Firstly it was at Sandton City itself in a cafe-style restaurant off Nelson Mandela Square. It was a late appointment (3pm). I found my way there okay because I have been to the area for a previous appointment but after I entered the parkade it was round and round, unable to find a parking. Eventually about 15 mins later, I did find one and then after memorising where my car was parked, entered the glittering and expensive world of Sandton City shopping centre, feeling rather like a refugee. I wandered through, not really knowing where I was going. Thank goodness for security guards as they helped to point me in the right direction. The overhead direction boards also helped and eventually I wandered out into Nelson Mandela Square amid the bold, the beautiful and financially well-endowed patrons, eating lunch at one of the multitude of eateries or snapping photos or just mingling and absorbing the atmosphere.

I found the cafe (I'm definitely getting good at finding places) and sat waiting for my turn to be interviewed as the interviewer was still busy with a prior interview. While I was waiting another interviewee arrived and jumped the queue, so I waited again. I think she had booked about 3 people for the same time. After a sketchy interview where I was advised that if I made the shortlist I would have to attend a full day of testing, whereafter if I 'passed' I would be given a one week contract and then whereafter I would be given a one month contract. I mean come on. Anyway, 'interview' over, I zoomed off, keen to leave the hyped-up bedlam of the shopping centre and ... got a bit lost trying to find my way back to the carpark entrance. I texted Robynne that I should have left a trail of breadcrumbs! Thanks to directions from another helpful security guard I eventually wandered out at the parking, paid and found the closest exit outa there! Well, the traffic started at the downramp to the street. I eventually got out and found my way to Sandton Drive and just sat and sat. Sandton traffic! As we crawled along there were police with rifles and dark glasses on the side of the road as well as army guys on the centre island, also with guns, Scary! Further along a BIG roadblock, with a minibus full of commuters being grilled by the police. Even further along on the other side to catch traffic coming up into Sandton, an identical roadblock, pulling off regular cars. At least on my side they were waving all the 'ordinary' cars through. I was so hot as Robynne's boyfriend's car's drivers side window doesn't open and I was overdressed for the heat in my interview clothes.

Mental note: No more 'bulls**t interviews at least until the silly season is over.

So I'm on the plot looking after the animals and cleaning house and not really feeling very Christmassy at all. Bradley has gone down to Natal for Christmas. He went with his father and their family, not telling me at all that they were going. He turns 16 on Christmas Day but I can't get him a present and I will probably not even see him. I don't think he cares...

Dael is very busy at work and only gets off on Christmas Day. I don't think he will even have time to hit the shops. My parents are not too happy that their family is far away but I know Dael will pop in there and they have my brother. Its not really the same, I know.

I will spend Christmas with Robynne and Marco, her boyfriend. We will cook a nice lunch, exchange some small gifts, phone our family, and enjoy the antics of the puppies and kitties.

We do what we have to do, I guess.


  1. Well, for what it's worth, my opinion is : the hype and commercialism of Christmas is just a huge downer anyway - I mean, we run around buying all sorts of gifts that other people more often than not don't need or like, they do the same for us...what a waste. And we get stressed on the last few days before Christmas queueing, parking,'s not what Christmas should be. I actually find this time of year more stressful than anything else.
    BUT - wishing you a great Christmas, and being with family is all that really matters anyway.

  2. Some people *choose* to have a simple Christmas and that is ok. Your day sounds like it was really stressful. My goodness! I pray you find joy in the simple things this year.

  3. If they can mess up an interview the place probably isn't worth going for anyway. Sounds like my place, where everything runs backwards. Still wishing you the best for any job you apply for. Like the other comments so far, I agree that the basis of Christmas is to be with someone you love, whatever the circumstance that's the only thing that truly matters. It's not ideal and you won't need anyone to tell you this, but it could be worse and I'm grateful at least you are sharing it with someone {an animals} you love. I thought I had it bad with working late, but I'm lucky enough to finish tomorrow 23rd and back the 28th.
    Bradley is young- I don't know him but- I am sure he cares. He does care. When I was that age I found it hard to show ANY compassion or emotion to anybody, even though I did feel it and would often feel guilty about it later. Still working on beating that today. My point is, please don't feel that you're not cared for. For what it's worth, you're cared for here too. All the best for Christmas. I hope it's nice for you.

  4. Lulu - I get what you mean about commercialism and unfortunately when kids are small you are forced to comply with the norm somewhat especially with schoolgoing kids. I prefer a simpler Christmas but my mom always goes the whole hog and as long as shes around we fit in with what makes her happy.

    Annette - Nice to hear from you. I do find happiness and comfort in simple things like just being out in the sun, feeling the cool breeze and feeling one of my kitties rub against my ankles. I'm certain that my life will be sorted out in the year to come.

    Griever - Your comments are very comforting. I have been through difficult and hurtful times with my two older children when they were similar ages. I suppose its all about timing and maybe Ive got too much time to think about things at the moment. I know that my son will come back to me. Its just that to me 16 is a milestone birthday and its hard that I can't celebrate it with him. Thank you for caring and for always being a listening ear.

  5. All the reasons why I love the sleepy city of Port Elizabeth. I hate shopping as a rule and at this time of year I don't go near malls.

    I would like to wish you a blessed Christmas with Robynne and Marco.


  6. Thanks Lynette - This is the first year I haven't been rushing around like a lunatic and cooling my heels in queues on Christmas Eve. I am sure we will have a peacefull and blessed Christmas together. I wish the same for you and your family.

  7. I trust that you had a wonderful Christmas with your children. Wishing you the career of your dreams for 2012. Much joy and happiness in your life.


  8. I think what's really important is spending time with your loved ones, not all the crazy spending. Actually the crazy spending kind of puts me off the whole business to be honest.

    Hope you had a great time with your family.

  9. wow, that stinks, but hopefully you still managed to have a good christmas regardless...