I'm a wanderer... - John C. Kirk
Jul. 27th, 2002
06:31 pm - I'm a wanderer...
Pretty good day at work yesterday. One of my applications (data cruncher) is currently taking a long time to run - about 17 hours for half a million records. However, I've got an idea to speed it up, so that it should take less than an hour. I'll try my theory out on Monday. Had a talk to the boss about things, which was also good (and long overdue!). When I started doing my A level in September, the basic idea was that since I was only working 4 days out of 5, I would then take a pay-cut to 80% of my normal salary, along with corresponding drop in leave. However, this wasn't implemented right away, because my annual review from last June was still pending, so if I got a payrise then it wasn't worth adjusting my salary twice. Anyway, things kept getting delayed, and I was worried that they'd hit me with a backdated pay-cut, and say "You don't get paid this month". However, when I spoke to the boss yesterday, he said that the overtime I've done during the course of the year (and particularly in the last month or so) cancels out with the time I took off, so my salary stays the same. So, that's a relief. I'm also going to get my annual bonus in the next couple of days, followed by an extra handover bonus, which was a welcome surprise. Roughly translated, that means "Please don't run away before you've taught everyone else what you know" :) And they're happy to give me references for flat-hunting, i.e. saying "John works here on a salary of X", without mentioning "until September", which is good of them. The plan is that I'll stay there until the 6th September, which gives me two weeks off before the start of term (induction on Friday 20th, term starts on Monday 23rd). I got back home at about 21:30, and Michael commented that I was working late again. Actually, no, it's just the cycle I'm in. Officially, office hours are 09:00 to 18:00 (8 hours work, 1 hour for lunch). Yesterday, I left the house at 10:00, so I got into the office at 11:15. So, if I arrive two hours late then I leave two hours later in the evening - 20:15 in this case. Also, if I spend time doing personal stuff (e.g. email), then I need to make the time up at the end of the day. Then an hour's travel home, and that's 21:30. William's commented that I'll probably be one of the few people who gets up earlier once I go from job-uni :)
On the poll front, it looks like my hunch was right - they're only open to logged in LJ users. Probably to stop ballot-box stuffing and whatnot...
Today, I went off to Kew Gardens with Michael, Michelle, and Lorna, which was fun. I'd never been before, and I was expecting fields. In fact, they had lots of tropical greenhouses, so I wound up regretting my choice of jeans over shorts. I must admit, my interests are a bit more limited than some people's when it comes to plants - I think "hmm, yellow flowers, big leaves" rather than "Ah, this is a particular variety of bromeliad". Still, all educational, and a good social activity.
After that, we went off to view a flat in Fulham. The estate agent told me on the phone that it was an ex-local authority place, and I didn't have a problem with that. However, it turned out to be on the top floor of a big concrete block. My first impression was "Ah, this is where all the unemployed people and drug dealers live". I'm sure that's very unfair, but doubtless Andrew would be proud of me :) Aside from that, the flat itself wasn't too bad, but the location meant we vetoed it. One odd feature - aside from the bathroom, it had a shower cubicle on the landing. I.e. you had an alcove with a shower in it, and a glass door, then a curtain that you pull across outside the door. Nice and private! Anyway, we've signed up with the agency, and we'll probably view another place on Tuesday, so early days yet.
Minor hiccup on the way home, when we took the scenic route back to the flat. At one point we walked past Goldhawk Road tube station, which is about 20m away from our flat. 5 mins later, we did a U turn to head back towards it... Ah well, live and learn.