I DON’T remember ever using the word here, but there has to be something momentous about an offspring receiving his/her first paycheque, and treating you to breakfast/lunch/ dinner (and maybe a little dessert), it’s so disorienting, because part of you still sees the small, innocent child in the newest member of the workforce, and yet so gratifying, because you know that no matter what happens next, nothing can ever take you away from your moment of pride and achievement, even though the milestone is not yours but your son’s/daughter’s.
Ganda had spent lots of anxious moments looking for a job, nervous situations surviving those final interviews, and finally gained a foot in the door towards holding down a first-ever job in NZ, and in all the time she never wavered in her resolve that, barely seconds after getting off the boat (figuratively) she could become a vital cog in the convalescing NZ engine of growth.
Notwithstanding, it was as a footsoldier in the hamburger-and-fries battalions of the fast food armies of which every member of society, First World, Second or Third, could be a stalwart. But because there were precious few jobs whose prospective applicants might multiplied by a factor of one hundred (i.e., three openings vied for by a potential 300 candidates), that priority in NZ was given to Kiwis and Maoris as a matter of political correctness, and lastly that Ganda’s credentials were limited to internships and on-the-job traineeships back home, actually landing a job so soon after getting here would be a challenge.
And true enough, the shortlists and breaks handed to our intrepid jobseeker were few and far between. Despite the fact that barkada, well-meaning friends and two sets of parents had already advised her that it wasn’t going to be a walk in the park, Ganda’s initial attempts at snaring a job were bound to end in disappointment. CV’s, applications and walk-in interviews were easy to hand out, fill in and conduct, but the reality was, for Ganda to expect anything out of these daily endeavors was shooting for the moon.
It was therefore going to be a ritual of handing out your bio-data in the hundreds, pounding the pavement and zooming in on anything that resembled a job referral in the adventure of finding a job.
That she actually found a job within a month from obtaining her permanent resident status was a pleasant surprise for all of us, her circle of friends, and not the least Ganda herself. Granted it wasn’t in the rarefied executive offices of Wellington CBD, but she wasn’t dreaming. Better-paying and more career-oriented jobs would be there, but for now getting her feet wet and filling out her resume’ (experience-wise) was the most important thing.
We wanted to grant her wish of treating us to lunch last weekend, but at the same time we didn’t want her to splurge too much so soon after starting her new job. A compromise was reached : she would choose any place (that wasn’t too similar to her fast food employer) and we would shoulder half the bill.
Considering that it was a marvelous grilled chicken dinner, that we hadn’t seen Ganda (and sidekick Bunso ) since they started looking for jobs (for weeks and weeks), and the conversation and bonding were outstandingly feel-good, it was hands-down a world-class way to celebrate entering the workforce.
For one sweet meal it was a reversal of roles, the providee becoming the provider, and the younger generation embracing the role of host. It was also a very unsubtle way of reminding us that after a certain point in life, time begins to fly, and pass you by if you don’t hold on like your life depended on it.
Congrats Ganda, and thanks everyone for reading!
- First day at work, last day at work in Middle Earth (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)
- why beer isn’t a sure thing even in a bar & resto district (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)
- Ganda & Bunso adapt adjust and assimilate (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)
- goodbye Tita Amy ! (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)
- the first job for the rest of your life (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)
- missing mangga, snubbing progessive lenses and saying hi to an honored NZ guest (ylbnoel.wordpress.com)
- Understanding Kiwi slang (gorentals.co.nz)