Friday, August 01, 2014

Swords Into Plowshares

The orientation to my job lasted more than 12 hours today.  I arrived at the plant at 6:10 AM, and we weren't released until after 6:30 PM. It was paid training, though, and at the end I got a "bump cap" emblazoned with the company logo and a reflective vest marking me as a new hire.  It wasn't until the end of the day that we found out the hours for the line we'll be joining, and it's a tad more than I anticipated: 61 a week.  I am going to be too tired to think about continuing other job hunts!  But as confirmation that this is where I am supposed to be, at least for the short term, I've gotten three more emailed rejection letters in the past 36 hours from other applications I submitted.  And I passed the hands-on evaluation with a perfect score, though I began wrongly and had to go back to correct some mistakes.

I wrote a fellow Georgetown Russianist about this new opportunity, noting the irony that back in the early days of the Soviet Union, in order to be eligible for university-level education, you had to prove yourself to be "a peasant from the plow" or "a worker from the machine", and here I am almost a century later, with all my considerable graduate-level education, proceeding in reverse order, proving myself as a worker, making plowing machines.  He noted that at least I am hereby earning a trade--when his postdoctoral fellowship concludes in the spring, he has no idea where he'll find work, and his wife is expecting their second child.  Historians have a tough row to hoe to earn a livelihood these days...

No comments: