The Smell of the Hunt is losing its Odour

So I’ve been in New Zealand now for going on four months, and in month three I began the task of job hunting. An easy task I hear you say, but myself and several other residents of the hostel would tend to disagree. I have dropped more CVs off in shops and bars than I care to think about, I feel that between us we could have destroyed the forests of the South Island with our constant printing of resumes.

Even locals are finding it hard as every business is looking for long term, and long term is more than 2 years. Who picks bars or retail work as a career? No one stays in these positions long term unless you want to climb the ladder or have to as it’s a second job, uni work or fits around your life choices. The biggest beef is when I’m asked for my experience. Sure I have experience but it was ten years ago but it’s still experience and with my other employment industry I should be a valuable asset to any team (in my humble opinion). I have managed 45,000 performers dancing in front of a stadium of 70,000 people and a live television audience of a billion people where my job was to make sure they entered in cue, I have pressed the buttons to detonate pyrotechnics that could injure performers… After that I feel I am able to cope with pouring a few pints on Saturday night or selling some jeans.

The job hunt is proving hard, and for someone with my work experience it’s starting to get frustrating. But in order to get a job, you need to have had experience in the role what seems like yesterday and are willing to work longer than your work visa allows.

What pisses me off is the fact that it’s retail and bar work, and not to rock boat but these professions are the easiest and rarely need experience… Off course you can be good or bad at it but at the end of the day it’s pouring a pint or putting a jumper in a bag. This is why for many it’s the first job. What adds insult to injury is that the signs for work remains up in the windows for many weeks after I’ve dropped my application off… And all within this period I’ve received no knowledge of the receipt of my CV.

What is starting to get to me is the fact that I’m unemployable… And that is not good for the soul.

Man Walks into a Bar

That man is me. I have walked into many a bar and as I walked the city streets the other night coming back from doing some shopping I passed several bars. Some new that I have never been in, some that I still frequent and many that I sadly no longer visit either because they have gone down hill or the times and fashion have moved on.

This got me thinking. When I leave I will probably have a leaving do. What would be better than having it themed around all the bars and pubs I have drank in while in Manchester? Now it’s not going to be that bigger of a pub crawl but it will be an interesting look at my drinking habits from being a student to now. Starting in the clubs, and then the trendy bars before moving to the bars and pubs that only serve real ale for real men.

My Longest Run!!!

Today I was going to go running along the canal to my friend’s house who lives out in Oldham. I decided that after yet another fast run the other day to cool it off, as he would have had to been pedalling so slow on his bike he might have fallen off as I wanted to use this long run as training ground to pace myself especially as I now have my trendy new Garmin which enables me to monitor my speed.

My mates in the pub the other night laughed when I spoke about not being able to run slow, there were cries of  ‘God yeah I have that issue running to fast’. Being drinkers I forgave their ignorance as they didn’t really get the idea of pace (both with running and drinking), especially when one said I could run 26.2 miles easily. I’m sure with training and after a couple of halfs (not pints but runs) I will be ready to take on the mother of all runs but for now I am quite content with running my first half and entering a couple of 10K’s each year. However after today’s triumph run I do feel that maybe next year I could enter a full-blown marathon and jog to the finish feeling good, all well be it not in a respectable time but after today’s result of 1hr 20min for ten miles maybe doing it in under 4 hours could be achievable.

A lot of runners like me who take running up to get fit, and see it as a hobby a bit like hiking or mountain  biking often dream to run a 6 or 7 minute mile and keep it up for 5 or 10K. The trouble is I can do this and have always been able to do it. My trouble is slowing down. I have read and been told to pace myself and I should be aiming for a 8-9 minute mile. The trouble is I can’t do it. Not sure why, I feel that I may be walking to fast or taking gentle strides rather than beating the road at any real speed.

But today I decided that the 15 mile run to my mates was too much, and if I wanted to give up, it was unfair on him who had cycled all the way to Manchester, to only have to cycle back to his house on the todd. So I decided I would go it alone around the streets of Manchester, and by god it was good. I started off with a pace of 6 minutes, this slowed to my usual 10K race pace of 7.20 eventually by the 3rd mile I had got it down to 7.60/8.05 but this seemed to make my legs tired almost ache as if they were asking to go faster, I was not striding as much, but this is how I continued until I felt my right foot getting numb and having a sense of pins and needles. With this I strode forward and increased my pace to 6 mins but this was also down hill. I then got back into a gentle pace, as I reached the 8 mile mark, and thought I would call it a day but felt good. My legs were working, my arms were enabling my body to function and pull myself forward and so I ran onto my 5K training route to get to ten miles.

And now I am home. On my travels my watch was a complete star, I do feel that it is helping me to train and pace myself correctly. While it may not feel like you’re running fast, your watch is showing that you are in fact covering a lot of ground.

On my way around I was stopped my a homeless guy who saw my Christie T-shirt with the Great North Run logo and told me what a fantastic job I was doing. He then began trying to give me his spare change. This made me stride forward as I am doing it for myself, but also doing it for others and if some one who has nothing apart from the clothes on his back wished to donate to my cause then it makes any injury or pain I may feel after training worth it, and hopefully will encourage others to donate. Running started of as a way to get fit, and lose the weight. But it has now become my life. I feel fit, free, de-stressed and good about myself. Running is my life and if I can use my past time that I enjoy to help others then why not? And This is why I run races for causes. It makes me happy and raises a little bit of money for people who need it the most.

I’m now back home after icing my foot and doing a good 15 minutes of cooling down, probably not enough I know as I can now feel my calves slowly tighten. But tomorrow is a rest day, and all day monday will be until the evening where a bit of hill sprints are in order to get my fitness and cardio up. I might just go and visit the gym to do some cross training to completely rest my calves from powering me to run.

Well I’m now off to go and eat lots of protein and fill up on my carbohydrate stores and hope that I have over done it.

Four Items of the Menu

Quick post, and it’s all about food. I’m about to go out and buy my tea, but I am unsure what to have. Soup is coming to mind, but I need more than soup. Maybe a pie with lots of veg, or spag bol with garlic bread. All those are my favorite food items to cook at home, but if and when ever I eat out, be it a pub or a more up market cafe then there are always four items on the menu that will cause my mouth to water and make me go silent while I think it out of which food would be most suited to house itself in my stomach to be digested.

So with out further hesitation the foods are

1. Steak and Ale Pie with Chips

2. Scampi and Chips

3. Lasagne (If there is vegetarian lasagne then I get really stuck)

4. Big fat Burger with cheese and Bacon

As I write this now, I feel I really want to have lasagne, but don’t have the patience to make it, or to wait. I could just buy a big family one from the supermarket and eat the whole thing. Oh well I think my mind is mind up, and I think the spag bol wins hands down, but I do want loads of veg and gravy, but I had roast chicken last night.

Well I’m off for a wonder to see if I get any inspiration.