Gabriel's shared items

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Job Fishing

Went Job Fishing at a certain International Plaza beside Tanjong Pagar MRT Station today with my old JC friend ShaoKen... Was quite an adventure and I gained some experience points in job hunting... We went around all the job recruitment agencies in the building to submit our names, it kinda reminded me of my ol' scouting days doing job week...

At first, we did not really know what to do. Shaoken had asked me if I wanted to go for a job fair, and being rather free recently, I decided to give it a try. Later when I met him I found out that it wasn't a job fair we were going to, rather he meant looking for jobs at these job agencies. He had learnt from another friend that that was the way to look for jobs, having loss his monthly source of income since his SAF contract expired, he was getting desperate for a job.

So we arrived at the building. We looked up the directory for companies which looked like job agencies, took down their unit number, and off we were like tresure seakers with a map. We begun by seeking out the highest office on our list, with the intention of slowly making our way down. We followed the unit number, past a corridor of unwelcoming grey doors, and arrived at a grey door with the unit number. And it was shut, just like all the other doors along the corridor. Some of these doors even had signs outside stating "We are neither a Recruitment Agency nor a Job Agency" or something to that effect. Not knowing what to do - whether to knock the door, or to open the door, or to turn away altogether, Shaoken consulted his friend over the hand phone. His friend told him to knock the door and walk in. Hesitantly, we did as his friend said.

Behind the door was a small office which housed around 8 tables. We were met by a woman who gave us each a form to fill up. They asked for our personal particulars, education, previous salary, expected pay, prefered job location or address, and IT skills. It seems that this is the most essential ability, as every form we filled had this field. Not knowing what to write, we simply wrote "Microsoft Office Applications" as given in their example. The lady who recieved our forms politely told us that we will be contacted if there were any job vacancies, something which we would hear each time we finished an application.

So that was it... My first job application at a career agency. Now armed with the new found experience of applying for a job, we went on to seek out the other offices in our list. We found job agencies of different shapes and sizes. Some had glass doors with fountains, some had our IC's photocopied, some spanned two levels, and one even had a test to assess the rate of typing in words per minute(wpm). I can't remember what the agency's name was now... but there was a nifty trick I used to beat this test. The computer based assessment was kind enough to allow us to have a warm-up typing test before the actual test. During this warm-up test, we would be using exactly the same text as we would for the actual test. While I was taking the warm-up test, I wondered if it was possible to copy and paste the text we had typed. So I highlighted the text I had typed so far, and held down 'ctrl-c'. I continued typing as i didn't know when the time would run out. Then when we came to the actual test, I held on to 'ctrl-p' and WhallaH! The text appeared! HAHAHAHA... But I started laughing after that, so that hindered me from concentrating on the typing, and in the end, the computer calculated that I typed at 45 wpm. But it was an invaluable experience nevertheless... I hope no one from that company reads this blog and fix the bug... no one really reads this blog anyway... so this secret should be quite safe. Anyway, I blogging today to immortalise this event in my blog... Never since NS (and since blogging) have I been so proud of myself. Heh...

Ok, my purpose for blogging today is accomplished since I've recorded this event... getting tired, gonna sleep now...

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Life After Army

Wow, the last time I blogged was before I went to india... I'm not a prolific writter, not a writter at all... Anyway, I've been on leave since I returned from India, I would only need to return to camp whenever I have SOC, cos I haven't passed my SOC, and I am now serving my last medical duty. In the past week, and in the days ahead, I will have more time at home to do everything I dreamt of doing back when I was stuck in camp.

However, I'm beginning to feel that once you cross over to the other side, you realise that the grass is not as green as you once thought. I've wanted for a long time to return to my alma matar to teach. When I was in the army, (I still am in the army, I haven't ORDed, but now I'm starting to taste freedom) and saw my sister teaching during her 6 months break between JC and university, I thought "I can't wait to be free from NS so that I can work as a relief teacher just like my sister." Now it seems that even though I am out of NS, I'd still not be able to realise this wish as the schools no longer need relief teachers. Sigh...

My greatest fear is that after I ORD I'd not spend my time meaningfully. I've already wasted a whole two years in NS, and I attribute the waste to my lack of freedom to choose what I want to pursue. And now, when I am granted the freedom, I lack the opportunity.

In the army, I experienced the feeling of being made to do things I utterly detest, and being unappreciated at that. Then, I really longed to be able to do something that I enjoyed, and which would benefit others. The result is that the work would be done well because I am good at it and I enjoy the process, while at the receiving end, the recipient would also benefit from my labour. And it'll be mutually benificial to both parties. I guess that was what Solomen meant when he said in Ecc 2:24
A man can do nothing better than to eat and drink and find satisfaction in his work. This too, I see, is from the hand of God,

At the moment, I'm looking out for such opportunities to occupy my available time. I hope that I'd eventually find a vacancy in a school. I also wish to put my admin and computer skills (or whatever little programing knowledge)to use, I'm hopeing to do it either in church or at REACH. And in doing so further hone my skills.

Ok, though I may be sounding very pessimistic about such a joyful, liberating occasion that is my ORD, there has been a few concrete, meaningful tasks which i am already pursuing. I've begun taking driving lessons, and I'm hopeing to pass it before my pdl expires in August. And I've also found a few tuition opportunities. But I still wish to try my hand at some mainstream work.

Ahhh!!! I'm just jotting down random thoughts, and verbalising my apprehension about ORDing... Or just feeling very bored doing duty on a Sunday, and writing a very long entry to make up for the lack of posts in the past month...

In the words of repeated monotony, blah!