How else do you respond to an e-mail saying “How would you like to work for VICE magazine in our Prague offices?” other than with a short but sweet reply of “Yes, I’d love too”?
An opportunity like that rarely comes a knocking and so when my employers refused my request for a three month sabbatical, I did what any other person who has been in their job for far too long would do, and handed in my resignation. Twelve years of blood, sweat and tears meant very little to my company and so the experience of working my final month was to be a pleasant, if not busy affair rather than the sad parting of ways it could’ve and should’ve been. Well for me anyway. The rest of my team were bewildered and stressed by the announcement. Not only had they lost a colleague with a vast amount of experience; a hard worker who brightened up their days with jokes and foul mouthed outbursts towards the computer, but now they all had to work a whole lot harder. They would now be covering my tasks and late shift until someone could be trained up and ready to fill some pretty big boots, a process which would take a lot longer than the two month internship I was about to embark on.
I had been researching internships on-line in order to equip myself with experience in the fields of work/volunteering I would like to do, and after a few e-mail exchanges and a Skype interview, I received the afore mentioned e-mail. After a brief chat with my girlfriend, it was decided that this of course was a once in a lifetime chance and I would quit my job and head East for the winter.
My final day wasn’t to be a surreal affair like I had imagined. It passed quite quickly and other than a crowd gathering round my desk to give me a farewell present, and my good buddy crying her eyes out as if she was at my funeral, it seemed like an average day in work. Really busy and really boring, maybe I’m just too laid back or long in the tooth for things to be surreal these days. Anyway, before I knew it the bell had rung for the final time, freedom o clock was signaled and we all hit the pub, even Grees Mun made it out. Drinks were drunk, hands were shook and that was it. Rat race over. Not quite retirement time but now I had a new course to run.