MIDWAY : Ten years of work

Binita Joshi Shrestha

With a head full of bitter and a hand ful of pleasant experience, it will be a decade next year since I was first got employed. Ten years is a long time, I tell myself, and when I weigh it with my mom who has already completed her 25 years of service, I am but awe-stricken.

My first job of about three months was quite unsettling experience with one disappointment — I was paid too less (I still feel the same though) but continued with the only hope that “what you learn is more important than what you earn.” And it remains as my consolation. But I do look upon my earnings too, as learning is a never-ending process, besides the fact that you should be duly compensated.

Ten years and four jobs down the line, two of them part-time, one a brief stopover, a mouthful of experience, three pages of CV and one conclusion: all the jobs are the same and so are the bosses! Great co-workers, touchy colleagues and the bosses, who had other things to consider about me than my work and all the mixed bag of people who at times treated me like a speck of dirt and at times embraced me like fragrance. All these years, I have also realised a few things: it is better to start a job from scratch as it leaves a lot of room for you to step up the ladder. If you start from the top, one would run out of higher places to climb. And it would be rather embarrassing to stick to one post without change in life, to be out of monotony.

In the lack of opportunities, the best ones are tied up into a pedestrian job due to compulsion. Despite wanting to get rid of mundane policies and far from friendly workplace attitude, “no more chances” and “irregularities in vacancy announcements” mean most of the capable ones are left with Hobson’s choice: to hang on to whatever they have at hand.

I compare my career to Trishuli River with some parts of it flowing sacred and other parts with rapids, sometimes too dangerous to seek solace in its murky confines and deceptive depth.

Space in a workplace is almost next to a Herculean task as you end up only seeking for it and never getting it. Most of the bosses are used to summoning you for a thing gone wrong but care a fig should you do something real good. Most jobs also reward for the time you spend in the office regardless of what you do. The punctual ones, however, are the eyesores. The cynosure are those spending more time inside the office, not in the office. Besides, they do not claim overtime charges too. So generous of them!