Okay. I’ve been to work 3 days now, and while there’s no way in hell I’d want to do this forever, as a stopgap sort of job it’s going to be just fine.

I spend my day sitting at a reception desk, making sure job candidates (I work for a recruitment company) get the proper forms filled out, putting their information into our database, reformatting their CVs to fit the uniform profile we provide the clients.

Interesting side note: there is a hugely different emphasis in NZ on CV policy than there is in the states, which is to say, my CV is one page single sided. Every other CV I have seen here is like, four pages long. (Possibly this is why I was unemployed so long.) But while I was told “Keep it short, if they have to actually flip pages to see the interesting stuff about you, they’re just not going to care” the vetting of candidates apparently does not work that way here. Or possibly, it is simply that we are a recruitment agency, the very premise of the job involves looking at CVs, and thus, they don’t “lose interest” like somebody would who is doing this on top of other job responsibilities.

Either way, it’s sort of weirdly different.

Also, the word “diploma” does not mean “a very expensive piece of pretty paper with your name on it saying you spend lots of time and energy to earn your BA/PhD/MD/MA/whatever.” Here, a “diploma” is its own course of study – sort of, I guess, an Associate’s Degree, as it’s a two year course of study and less awesome than a BA. I was not expecting that.

I open mail, I pick up mail from the PO box, large amounts of money pass through my hands by cheque, and I get notices of even larger amounts that have been directly deposited to the company’s account. I have to scan these, and enter various codes into a spreadsheet, and all of that information sails across the Internets to Australia.

They throw money around like crazy here. I guess all companies do. But it just seems … almost wasteful, to me, to say “Our other office didn’t plan properly and is running low on X item, and we’ve got some extra, what will we do? Oh, I know! We’ll send it across the city by a 1 hr courier!” Now, maybe it only costs, like $10 to send something by courier, but somehow I imagine it being more like … $20, $25 each time. But then, it’s not exactly like they could say “Hey, receptionist, you’re going to take 2 hours to hop on the bus with this ream of paper and take it across the city!” because that’s clearly a really poor use of my time.

I’ve just never worked for a large company before, and this ability to say “We need this done conveniently more than we need to save the money and do without it for a day” is sort of … new.

Completely unrelated, there is a woman here, who is apparently French, and who is intimidatingly well dressed. Which is to say, I see her and start looking for Meryl Streep in a sleek grey bob and oversized sunglasses.

She makes me feel weirdly dowdy, even in my nice (not so new) threads. Speaking of which, it’s very nice to get to Dress for work, though the experience of wearing a jacket all the time is, well, wearing thin – the office is a touch overwarm. And I’m supposed to be wearing something with a collar at all times. Collared shirts are okay, except that none of my shirts have collars and thus: jackets.