Watching paint dry comes to mind, or even watching grass grow. Sitting, sitting, sitting. This is not where I want to be. I want to be out, I want to be experiencing, living, running, jumping, eating, womanising, playing, screaming, laughing, anything. I could do this job with my eyes closed I mean it is not that demanding. Anyway here is how my work experience started…
The prolonged business of finding my work experience started in a PSHE lesson, with my tutor telling me how important it is, however it was a couple of months before my experience started and teachers were making it out to be the time when you go out into the big cruel world and get a taste of real life, they were trying to make it sound exciting and a challenge at that. When I had to find a work experience place it occurred to me that it was time for me to grow up; that things were changing.
Thinking it was time to grow up a bit I thought that I would get my work experience finalised as quickly as possible to avoid stress when it was not needed, as I had many important module tests coming up and also keeping up to date with my studies. In January came our placement forms, this was the start of five months of constant hassling from Mrs Kassir. We were inundated with Mrs Kassir voice telling us, “Don’t miss your deadlines! ” or “Bring your yellow forms in by Friday…. or you won’t be going on your placement”. This was utter hell!
Sometimes I am surprised that woman doesn’t have a nervous breakdown or blow a blood vessel because she seems to be doing constant work. I had pondered the though of working in a mechanics with my friend, it would be a bit of a distance to get to, but I thought it would be enjoyable and fulfil my interest in cars. I thought that I should also keep a backup choice just in case my first did not occur; I asked my Aunt and Uncle whether or not my work experience would be taken place at their pharmacy in case I go not get a place at the mechanics.
They accepted my offer and I was able to relieve my mind of worrying about my work experience in the short term, I had sent off my papers to the mechanics and was waiting for a reply. After waiting I grew anxious and pressurised my friend to ask the person he knew at the mechanics what was happening with our placements. To my dismay there would only be one placement offered, however as I though that I had another option I opted to work at a pharmacy. I sent off the legal document and the set up to my work experience commenced.
The week prior to my Work Experience was I was really happy and excited solely on the basis that I was going to have tow weeks off school. For a week I had to liase with the school and my future employees by sending and receiving documents about me working there. After the hassle of organising my work experience the time finally came to go there. I arrived at Edmonton (where my work experience was) at around nine o’clock. I travelled there with my Aunt and Uncle it was ‘all part of the service’ I was told.
The shop was dingy; it had a musty smell and seemed like a used place. Hardly a place I though people would want to come to help them get better. When I got there a customer arrived straight away I did not know what to do I felt out of place, but my employers handled it with grace, it was like second nature to them. I then prepared myself for the long and boring safety briefing, but unfortunately it never came; so if the place was going to burn down I guess I would go down with it! Instead I was given an induction into what I was going to experience.
I was going to be on the till, I was also going to be doing merchandising – my heart leapt something that would finally challenge me as this sounded new. Unfortunately all it meant was making sure the customer could see everything on the shelves, I did not think that it took much brainpower to do this. Great! I had been on the till and had made a couple of mistakes, but soon picked up on them and was a natural, however making mistakes on a till makes you feel a little bit inferior as it does not take a rocket scientist to work it out.
It was the first day and things were satisfactory. Then it was chaos. Three toddlers entered the shop, very lively delinquents with a single mother. This was the equation for trouble. My Aunt was serving the lady. Another customer came in and I was serving them, the pharmacist was advising a customer and the three children had gotten hold of lipstick on the shelf and were decorating the dull carpet. I thought it brought colour to the place. I found the situation hilarious at first, but trying to stop them is another thing.
Cleaning it up is another. My next experience was cleaning, I did not expect it, but I could not argue with my employers either. I could not apply the saying so far so good to the day that I was having. It was around one o’clock I had some lunch and a break for an hour. The shop was pretty empty if customers did come they all came at the same time. They might have a plan to ruin the ‘new boys’ day. It was a bit like being in the army, this was like my initiation my test to try and get in.