West End Girls, East End Boys

If only I could spend as many days in London as I have pictures in my phone after the trip…:)

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It was my third time in London. The previous two happened over 6 years ago, when I was living in a small (relatively small) Finnish town – before I ever visited Paris or New York or San Francisco or Honolulu  – so you can imagine how much I had my mind blown after seeing what London had to offer.  I’m even embarrassed now to remember how excited I was to see  Victoria’s Secret shops or how I was making my friend who I was visiting go to every single Starbucks we saw or how confused I was in the tube looking for the correct line.

Weather was  great. London rain is overrated, if you ask me. We were there for  5 days in November and didn’t see a drop of it. However, I completely forgot what it felt to be outside for longer than 15 minutes when the temperatures are in the high 40’s/8-9 C. You need layers and layers of clothes. You also need a big scarf, a hat and gloves. Unless you are local. In this case you can go just wearing ballerinas, ripped jeans and short leather jacket. At least, this is what the majority of the women I saw looked like. I was freezing just looking at them and wrapped in the scarf tighter.

Food is good in England.  Don’t argue with me on that one, I am a foodie and I am peculiar when it comes to that part of the deal.  The only place where I didn’t like the food was the place I used to love during my previous visits. Yes, Patisserie Valerie, I am looking at you. Those Eggs Benedict were a disgrace. Warm apple tart was ok though. The rest of the food experience was very good. Duck Shepard’s Pie and steak tartare at Balthazar. Coffee and pastries at Arro Coffee. Steaks and grilled porcini mushrooms at Zelman Meats. Fish and chips – yes, fish and chips – at some no name place on our way to the tube. Continue reading

When The Universe Is Trying To Tell You Something…

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I spend last year and a half looking for another job.

There were a handful of reasons for me to do so. I felt there was no room for me to grow in my current position, I felt I mastered it all and was just wasting my brain on a transactional stuff a monkey could do.  I felt I’ve overgrown my salary, and most importantly my working style and the one of my direct manager didn’t align very well. Being an HR professional I know you should not vent too much about your manager online, so let’s just say it didn’t click.

During these 1,5 years I have been to literally dozens of interviews. God knows how many times I was the final candidate. I once had company CEO calling me after the interview letting me know how impressed they were. I was once shown my office-to-be and introduced to direct-reports-to-be. But everything was falling through. At first, I was cool about it, knowing it’s all a part of the process. Then I started being pissed. Then concerned. Then desperate. Then almost a wreck. Three years ago I found a job in a week having zero US working experience. Now I could not find a job in 1.5 years, having a good track record and managerial position with one of the industry giants.

My circle of support also went from encouraging to plain laughing every time I was telling them that yet another company picked someone else over me. Continue reading