- spending more time with my cousin and being there to ferry the kids, support at sports days, concerts, etc
- walking other people's dogs
- doing some volunteer work for Autism NZ which will not only keep me out of trouble, but also teach me new skills, give me some insight into this spectrum disorder and also, help them out - win-win all round and thanks Matt and the committee for giving me the opportunity
- playing tennis and meeting and getting to know some amazing new people that I'd otherwise never have met
- going to agencies doing all their tests (and finding that actually, my practical computer/ typing/packages skills are pretty good - yeah!)
- preparing for interviews and honing my presentation and interviewing skills (by the law of averages, one is going to come up trumps soon!)
- having the cat sitting on my lap purring her furry little heart out in contentment at having company for a change - what a great de-stresser
- planning trips to Australia and Italy for next year's cycling holidays ...
- learning italian
- starting a degree
- tidy up the garden
The list could go on and on and on, but most of all, its a gift to be able to take some time out to smell the roses, listen to the birds and watch them flitting around the garden, be there for other people, get to know the neighbours and generally participate in LIFE rather than seeing it fly by in my rear view mirror.
Thing is, I've got this time out for a reason, there are lessons to be learned that will help me get to the next stage and all I can say is 'Bring them ON'.
Oddly enough, I've got an interview on Wednesday - totally out of the blue I got a phone call on Friday inviting me along. I've applied for about 8 jobs at this particular organisation and haven't even got to the interview stage - well with 2-300 applicants you've got to start doing something major to catch the eye of the recruiter - like maybe ringing up 5 mins before the closing time to ask if they got my application because I haven't received a confirmation e-mail?? Maybe that's what worked this time.
Anyway, for the first time ever, I've got to include a 5 min presentation on a subject I do know about, but in a context (IT) that I'm completely unfamiliar with. Even rang them back today just to make sure that we weren't going to be wasting each other's time, but apparently not - phew, only spent a day preparing so far!!
Thing is, even if I don't get this job, I don't actually mind because now I'm beginning to see how to get the interviews and ringing up any contact people and discussing the role with them is definitely a way to get your name noticed and, hopefully, highlighted when all those applications come zooming into the recruiter's e-mail box. (That is, always assuming that you've actually got the skills they're looking for and you really DO want the job they're advertising!!!)
My diary is completely full for the week and somehow I just KNOW that the right opportunity is getting closer and closer. In the meantime, there's tennis and dog walking and volunteering and catching up with friends I haven't seen for months and reading and baking and - well, the list is just endless. Oh yes, might even manage to get that rhubarb planted ...