Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Le boulot - apéritifs and compliments

I know I already said I don't love my job, but it has been interesting lately.  A week and a half ago my boss hosted an apéritif at her apartment for all the English teachers at my company.  At first I really didn't want to go.  The idea of spending my Friday night acting professional at my boss' home while speaking to people I don't know really didn't appeal to me.  However, I am glad I went.  I had originally planned to only stay an hour, but I ended up enjoying myself so much that the next thing I knew, four hours had passed and I was late to go see my friend's band play.  I didn't have to act professionally, I ended up learning a bit about my company, I finally met my colleagues, I put some faces to the different names I had heard and I discovered a little bit of hope for the future.  I hope these good feelings last.

My boss made a ton of food (all kinds of great little apéritif snacks - cups of endive and roquefort salads, pesto, mozzarella and tomato salads, mini pizzas, lentils and salmon, etc) and she had tons of wine and champagne.  We ate and drank a lot (that's what happens when you get a bunch of anglophones together).  I spoke to my colleagues about work and our lives, I met the other people who work in my company's office (people with whom I have constant email contact, but have never actually seen) and I just had fun.  My boss even ended up quite drunk (after 4-5 bottles of wine and more champagne than I can count, we were all a little tipsy), which was funny to see.  And I discovered that half of my colleagues are American, and that one of them has been with my company since they were founded, 16 years ago.  Yep, that's right.  He's done this job for 16 years (and he's happy with it) so it must not be all bad and maybe it will get better for me.

Other news on the job front...my evil woman from Monday mornings almost gave me a heart attack at the end of our lesson yesterday.  After 10 weeks of yelling at me, treating me like crap and basically implying that I am a complete idiot, she actually complimented me.  At the end of the lesson I had prepared she turned to me and said (and I quote) "wow Michele, thank you.  That was a very interesting lesson."  My jaw dropped to the ground and I think it is still there today.  All we did was read a boring article on finance, study the vocabulary and expressions (derivatives, options, securities, over-the-counter trading, etc) used in the article and then discuss some of the topics presented.  I was bored to tears and not happy about learning all of this financial vocabulary, but I was thrilled she was happy!  It won't make up for 10 weeks of torture though, and I'm still looking forward to her lessons ending next week so I don't have to stress about her any more!

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