I still have a job. I just don’t know if I want it. The Santa Cruz branch of the company (where I work) will be closing its doors permanently at the end of September. The company will also be closing our Chico branch as well. The company wants to keep the three of us supervisors from the Santa Cruz branch. However, we will be working out of the Lancaster branch. If you have ever been to Lancaster, you know it is not a very fun place. It’s better than Taft, but still miserable. We will be what our client calls “lead monitors”. We will work 6 days a week up to 11 hours a day and basically be on-call, 24-7. It will not be a fun experience, very high stress and frustrating, and an all around logistical nightmare. I’m painting a very lovely image aren’t I? Now, if this project is running at full steam then the three of us who used to work in Santa Cruz will be fully employed round the clock. However, this is not the case right now. There will be times when nothing is going on… and then what? I stick my thumb up my butt and wonder why someone thought it was a good idea to create a drug that rots your teeth? The “boss man” said when this particular project is not running full steam ahead, or we don’t need to be on the ground down yonder, we can work from home… but then he can’t guarantee us work. But this is archaeology and CRM where there really is no job security ever, and we are at the whim of the people, government agencies, and corporations that hire us. There never was job security, I just got lazy and didn’t think this would happen.
So the elephant in the room is this: Do I continue on here and basically relocate to Lancaster and go prematurely grey? Or do I start looking for another job in Archaeology? Or, do I look for another job elsewhere?
I’ll say one thing: I won’t miss the hour commute it takes just to get to the office in the morning. I will miss my co-workers though. How many of you can say that you would actually enjoy hanging out with your co-workers outside of work, or understand each others humor? I consider these people my friends.
I used to like this company. I was proud to work here. I was proud of the products we produced and the quality of our work. Now I feel like a pawn being carelessly strewn around the chessboard with no regard to my feelings, worth, or well-being. I almost threw in the towel today and walked away. But my co-worker who is also getting tossed about said not to make any rush or rash decisions, that we needed to let this stew a bit. It’s still fresh… it needs to fester first, I suppose.
So, I know now that I will quit. I just haven’t decided when. I feel like I need to have at least some semblance of a plan first, perhaps another job lined up so that I’m not without. Then again, I am a saver, and have been since I was a kid and my older siblings would borrow money from me. I can survive and still pay my mortgage and expenses for about 4 months with no income. And because the “boss man” won’t just lay me off, I do not qualify for unemployment.
I’m angry. I’ve given this company 5 years of my life and even caught a deadly fungus that has permanently scared my lungs for life while working for them. I’ve done great things for them, and they don’t see it! They never do. It has happened time and again, that they loose great employees because they don’t treat us right. They push, they shove, they take take take. I had a hellish year last year and ended up taking a long vacation this past December. The job was better at first when I came back. We do this job because we love archaeology. It’s not for the glamor, fame, or money because those things don’t exists in this field. But it wasn’t fun anymore. I’ve become very bitter, battered, bruised, and burnt out.
Kia ora, and perhaps it is time for this *koru to unfurl.
*Koru is a Maori word, which is a new unfurling fern frond and symbolizes new life, growth, strength and peace.