I needed to get out of the way of the cleaning lady yesterday, so decided to tie off a loose end. I went up to Inwood, which is where I lived my first year in town (well, 10 months). It is so far off the beaten track that I had literally not been back since I moved (almost 25 years ago) until last July, when I went up to join friends in their annual July 4th ‘walk the length of Manhattan’. There wasn’t a lot of poking around I needed to do, but I still didn’t have time to do it all. So… went up yesterday, checked some things off my list.
The Twin Donuts at the corner of 218 and Broadway is still there, hurrah! The deli and dry cleaners on that little block before Park Terrace East is still there. I went to look at my building again – no scaffolding this time. Nothing about the building is interesting, really, except it did occur to me last night as I gazed lovingly at my snoring spouse, that that’s where I was told for the first time that a man loved me. (Spoiler: it was him.) So maybe there should be a plaque.
Checked out some other places in the neighborhood and did a nice little walk in the park. That park is really quite wonderful and I wish I had taken more advantage of it, but it occurs to me that I moved in late September and by the time I got settled, it would have started getting quite chilly, and by the time it warmed up, I was deep in the throes of luv and we were going through that constantly bouncing back and forth between each other’s homes thing that was so wearing. Anyway…
But I did get a frisson of memory of possibility – my move to NYC was very much a reboot of my life, and at that time, very little was set in stone, I had very little idea of what was next – it was all open. I had this great city to explore, I had a new job and a new home (and soon, a love) and most of the patterns I’d fallen into in my late 20’s were no longer relevant.
I’m shaken up now, too, except that this time, I feel like there’s no solidity underneath me. Not only do I not have a job, but the assumption you make when you are looking for a job is that the world itself is moving on in much the same way it always does and you just have to find an on-ramp to get back into it. But right now, everything’s up in the air. I am wryly amused that in my last post, I mentioned that I thought bringing up telecommuting as an option was putting interviewers off – and now I suspect that telecommuting is about to be the norm for everyone who can do it. Did I do that, with my hitherto-unsuspected mind powers? (I’m rereading Mercedes Lackey’s Valdemar books, and one of the characters has a very strong mind power that, at the moment in the book I’m reading, she can’t control and it’s causing havoc.)
But what this outbreak and the world in free fall is going to do about my own job search (way to make it about you, Eric, but yeah, that’s what this blog is) is undetermined. Possibilities include: everyone will stop hiring for now until things settle down, or alternately, some industries will step up hiring because they need people who do what I do and can easily do it from their home office. Maybe all bets are off and what everyone’s going to be doing is a few months is, rather than worrying about our 401Ks, worrying about where our next meal is coming from. (that’s cheery, right?)
OK, let’s split the coronavirus fears and the job thing into different tracks, because I have no idea how they will really interact.
Virus stuff. I’m not that worried for myself – I’m pretty healthy and I know how to wash my hands. The fear, as always, is infecting someone else if I have it. I do find myself on the subway several times a week, but I know enough to be circumspect about how I sit near and, as always, to wash my hands. But I do live with someone who, although healthy himself, is in his 60s. And of course I worry about my 85 year old Dad, although he’s not in big crowds of people much himself.
My performing groups are postponing or cancelling rehearsals and performances right and left. I have some gigs coming up and there are no current plans to change them, but things are moving quickly and who knows. I’m grateful that I’m not the one in charge of any of these, having to make those decisions.
As for the job stuff – I had a fairly promising phone interview scheduled, with a lot of back and forth with the guy setting that up (who, oddly enough shares my first and middle name). And then he didn’t call as scheduled and, when I emailed me, never got back to me. I thought it was a brainfart situation, but now it feels like I’ve been ghosted. That’s weird that it got that far that we scheduled something and then radio silence.
Oo, I also found out that Tough Cookie, the woman who hired me for my last job and then spent most of 2019 shredding my confidence and making my life a living hell (as well as doing the same to everyone else she came in contact with) is apparently leaving the company. Aw, what a shame. Without her there, I actually would be happy to return to the company, as there was much I liked about the work and the people, but if some miracle happened and they offered me a job again, I would have be a real hardass about what roles I was willing to take on and what not.
More as it develops…