Sunday, February 27, 2011

The downside of overtime

Recently I wrote about how my boyfriends hours at work have completely fluctuated,(here) He went from working an average of 40 hours per week between June and November. Then in December we had a huge snow storm and his hours at work became less and less. Last week he worked a measly 4 hours because the restaurant wasn't busy at all.

He was quite disheartened all week. Then yesterday he went to work 1pm-5pm and was asked to work overtime til 10pm. However it was midnight and I hadn't heard anything from him since 7pm so I thought something must be wrong with him and text him and rang him and couldn't get through to him... Then he rang me at 12.30 and he told me that  his head chef, Paddy had asked him to stay even later...  

Normally this would be a really good thing, the more hours the better, but not this time. All I felt was sick to my stomach. His head chef had asked him to sell burgers at a barbecue outside in the beer garden while a musician played, in front of all the costumers while the head chef himself drank with his friends. 

Maybe I am jumping to conclusion but it screams racism, whether its indirect or direct or accidental racism I don't know but to me it sounded disgusting. No Irish person in their right mind would agree to do this type  of  task. In my head it was like a puppet on a string,

You say jump, I say how high.

He told me today that he had never felt so embarrassed and uncomfortable in his whole life, he said everyone was staring at him and joking about him and someone even commented to his head chef  

"Paddy your here drinking and you left poor him doing the burgers"

The problem is he just wouldn't say no because he was afraid he would lose his job. However to make matters worse. He was told that a bar man would give him a lift home and when he finished at 2am, the barman told him to pack up quickly because presumably he wanted to go home. This morning when he went to work he found out, in the rush he left the burgers outside... Being the good hearted person he is insisted on paying for the burgers 30 euro! Furthermore in the end he had to get a taxi home because the bar man left him waiting in the cold. The taxi cost 10 euro.

So in the end he made 50 euro selling burgers, had to pay 30 euro for the wasted burgers and 10 euro for the taxi and was left with 10 euro for all the embarrassment. I have a good mind to complain to the restaurant about this disgraceful treatment.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

What do you have Toulouse?

Normally Friday is my favorite day for classes despite the fact I have to get up extra early, usually 8.45 in order to catch the bus at 9.15 however today I had to get up even earlier than usual, 8.15 to catch the bus at 8.45 because I wanted to go to a talk on a Dual Masters Degree program in Toulouse, France. 

So I rushed out of the apartment determined not to be late for the 10.00 talk and arrived at almost 9.15. So there was absolutely no chance that I would be late, when I got to the classroom there was no one there...

I sat down and then 2 Chinese girls came in and looked at me curiously and asked "Do you have a class now?" No I'm here for a talk... "oh we are as well!!" 5 minutes nobody else had turned up not even the speaker, I thought we must be in the wrong room.... Then a Chinese guy came in and asked "Is there a talk? then he sat down then another guy came in a french guy from Toulouse! He wanted to go on an exchange program back to Toulouse?? Ireland obviously wasn't meeting his expectations...

Then at 10.15 my program coordinator came in and said "The speaker is delayed and will be here in 3 minutes... so we waited and waited and still no speaker and no other students... Then the program coordinator came back and said we have to move to another classroom... The talk started at 10.30 just as my favorite class Global Competitive strategies was supposed to start :(

This is ireland nothing ever runs on time... but I think it was time well spent. The Dual Degree sounds very attractive but is also rather pricey. 8000 euro tuition fees, 350-500 euro per month for rent and maybe 300 more for food and going out...

The lady giving the speech explained to us, that in France a masters degree usually takes 2 years... so If we go over to France we are entering the second year of a masters program. which consists of 6 months of classes and a compulsory 6 month paid internship then you graduate 1 and a half years later, with a french Masters...

In order to get a chance to do this Dual Masters you have to fill out an application form online and then attend an interview and fingers crossed you get it. I haven't talked to my parents yet... so I have to wait and see.... Because I have never lived overseas alone before and I have never done an Erasmus this sounds really interesting to me.

Too be continued.....

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Chinese Feast

On Saturday I was invited to a Chinese Dinner Party, 4 Chinese friends from my college thought it would be nice to invite some of their non Irish friends to come and have a traditional Chinese Banquet. Oh my god their was so much food, you would think they were planing to feed an army! But you know thats what makes it traditional lol.
Can anyone spot me? look in the far left corner
Anyway alll the food was really delicious and we all had a great night :) and went home with a very full belly lol

Here is a picture of the 4 chefs

Here are some pictures of the guests
 The German Twins JKs (Katherina & Frederika)
 Amaury, Nancy & Niamh (My boyfriend says I look a bit like Niamh what do you think?)
Finally Me & Ma Jin

Strangely even though I use chopsticks all the time when I am staying at my boyfriend's house, I still felt really uneasy and uncomfortable and clumsy using them at the dinner party. I just don't like people watching me eat lol! I even ended up droping them on the floor at one point in the night. I felt like such a newbie lol! That has never happened to me before.
One special thing at the party was using red chopsticks,  which is kind of rare. I really want to get a pair of Pink chopsticks instead of the boring wooden ones I use all the time.

Ooh! I really want to go chopstick shoping now! The last time I went chopstick shoping was way back In April, when my boyfriend moved to Kilkenny, and when he got there he realised he hadn't brought any chopsticks and he had nowhere to buy them. So I went to the Chinese Supermarket to buy them and when I picked up a packet of about 10 sets of chopsticks they all fell on the ground! :O

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

Yesterday was really crappy and depressing when my boyfriend returned from his friend's snooker club Xin Yue Entertainment, We had a huge big dinner of pig ear (believe it or not it actually tastes surprisingly good and is also surprisingly big @.@) and a pink Chinese fish, We still haven't found out what the fish is called all he could tell me was it was a very expensive Chinese fish... Does anyone have any ideas?
 How cute!! I don't want to eat them

After the dinner I watched a Korean Drama that I am glued to these days, My Princess. My boyfriend says Korean dramas are hopeless there all about unrealistic and unbelievable love stories.... Its never going to happen...I thought we could try watching some taiwanese romantic dramas instead but....  He prefers to watch Chinese dramas about the war or ancient times.... so we both sit together watching separate shows lol.
 Every girl dreams of being a princess....
Omg this is why girls watch Korean dramas lol!!! If there were semi naked girls I bet my boyfriend would be enticed lol.

Then just before I was about to go to sleep he dropped a new bombshell on me... He is planing to move to the countryside to work in a Chinese restaurant as a kitchen porter, because he isn't making any money in his current job because his hours keep fluctuating :(

After that I couldn't sleep a wink I know technically its probably the best way for him to make money since in a Chinese restaurant they don't pay you per hour but, more so by week so regardless of whether the restaurant closes because its not busy you still get paid the same amount and often they provide you with accommodation and food so it eliminates a lot of expenses. However when you average out the wages by day, its often below minimum wage. Also the workers have a reputation of being Illegal, No English, and over worked and not paying taxes.

Ultimately I am trying to encourage him not to go, purely because its a bad environment to enter. and maybe because I'm selfish. I just don't want him to go. I want him to just persist at trying to find a new better job in my town. Also I strongly believe that all restaurants go through a lull period in January and February because people have no money after Christmas... But come spring everyone will be out drinking eating and being merry! and his working hours will go back to normal! Anyway for now I have to prepare for the worst...

There will be light at the end of the tunnel!

Friday, February 18, 2011

A big McWedding!

My boyfriend's hours were cut again this week :( However one good thing came out of McDonald's messing up my order on Valentines day, I found out the McDonald's in my town is hiring! I know most people have a relatively low opinion of working in McDonald's but these days Ireland's economy has gone down the drain,

So any job is good, I thought perfect getting a job in McDonald's must be really easy, My boyfriend has lots of experience as a chef. So he is definitely without a doubt qualified. So I encouraged him to apply, But I was shocked when I saw the application process 8 pages to sift through, Personality tests, education references, question upon question It took almost an hour to fill it all out then after all that once we had submitted the application, I found out he was applicant 448!  It turns out getting a job in McDonald's next to impossible! I this is like deja vu with our other never ending visa application

Anyway if the McDonald's job application process in Ireland doesn't shock you, Then the McWeddings that have just been launched definitely will! I just found this by chance on another blog Musing Mandarin When will the madness stop!!

 McApple Pie cake!
 Strictly no alcohol, so they toast with soft drinks
McDonald's balloon wedding dresses. (photos from here)

If a McWedding doesn't tickle your fancy what about a McEngagement

(Photos from Here)

A McWedding costs HK$9,999 943.290 EURO, thats really cheap, The idea has also spread to Brittan and the USA

A McReception, American style


Would you have your Wedding, Reception or Engagment party in McDonalds?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

A compliment in the rain

I hate Wednesday's this semester. I have the worst class ever, International Financial Management, it is beyond boring. Part of the problem is I have absolutely no clue what the teacher is talking about, because mathematics is not my thing at all. I like theory practical stuff. It doesn't help that the teacher is Indian, Now I have nothing against Indians in fact one of the first friends I made in this college was an Indian guy Narendra.
But anyway this lecturer's manner of speaking is really slow and quiet... then suddenly he comes to a complicated term and then he speeds up and then I find out I have missed the meaning completely. Also he uses the white board a lot and writes so tiny that I can't read it, not just me everyone.

So I have almost given up on the course my only aim is to do severe cramming before the exam and hope for the best. Anyway today was even more unpleasant, not only did I have to sit through 2 hours of International Financial Management I also had to walk to and from college in the rain  and get completely soaked to the skin both times!

Anyway tonight I got the train home and got off the train in the rain and was halfway across the bridge and a girl stopped me and said "You look lovely today!" and kept walking..


Anyway it made my day! I will take any compliments girls or boys, Compliments are few and far between. Everyone is so individually focused these days, people rarely stop to compliment each other. I think people need to start making a bigger effort.

Perhaps people should make a pact to compliment one person each day, It really cheers a person up when there having a crap day.