Monday, 8 March 2010

Dilemmas

I've been in a very uninspiring position recently - working as a PA to a very rich woman. I've gone from a beautiful caravan on a basic, off-grid farm in Welsh mountains to an over landscaped, overheated, over consuming household near London. This house is bulging at the seams, almost out of control....and every crack is papered over with money. Outgoings of £50,000 Per Month. Per. Fucking. Month.

I'm whirling round inside a hamster wheel that has been created by a person who has enough money to create such a busy and hectic life for herself that it serves to disguise the fact that she has no life at all.

I'm supposed to be here January til end March. Then I was asked to stay a couple of weeks into April until she finds a replacement for me. Every extra week I stay here is a week of the spring missed. A week of good weather where I can sleep outside, where I can find forests to make houses in and lakes to dive into. A week of wandering and wondering. But every week I stay here in Moneyville is worth 2 months of that outdoor existence. So I grit my teeth, and I compromise myself and I carry on.

If I was going to stick to my principles I would have left in the first week.
I should have left when I was asked to install an electronic drinking fountain for the cat - a little pump, plugged into the wall, sucking electricity 24 hours a day so a cat can have running water to drink from. What is wrong with a saucer?
I should have left the first time I was asked to log into Facebook and approve this woman's friends requests for her.
The first time I printed every email in her inbox for her to look at at her leisure - including all the newsletters from executivemanagement.com, microfinancedirect.com, landlordspropertynews.fuckingcom
The first time I did the weekly shop for £300 worth of groceries that I had to try and stuff into cupboards already bulging with uneccessary food.
The first time I realised the fact that this household is an overgrown puff of pointless air, completely useless yet consuming Huge amounts of resources for basically Fuck All.

But I didn't leave, I stayed. I compromised my principles for Money. The thing I thought I hated. It makes me sad that I'm still here, encased in plastic, slowly forgetting what it's like to be outside in bare feet.

My dilemma. I've been asked to stay longer. Until the start of May. Another 3 weeks added to my time here. In exchange for more money and a holiday in this lady's flat in Barcelona. What the fuck? I have family in Barcelona, I could see them, maybe get other people over here. What a great start to my travel, a paid ticket to Spain. But it means staying here for another 3 weeks.....when I'm already counting the days. But 3 weeks work here means 6 months in the forest out there. What's three weeks out of a whole life?

Is it better to stay, take the money and be able to finance over a years worth of life in exchange for this 4 months here. Or should I say No, fuck you and leave because I wasn't able to be bought. And if that's the case, why didn't I do that 2 months ago?

To take part in the system, even cynically, is to keep it alive. I am taking nothing down from within, I am just bending over and taking the money. Voluntarily locking myself into a gilded cage. Fucking, fucking, fuck.

1 comment:

click clack gorilla said...

I've been having a similar conversation with myself lately, ever since starting an editing job for a website. I write things sure, but most of my job is mundane staring at the computer stuff, and I am also expected to log onto facebook and get a twitter account, etc, etc, etc. Yet it is only two days a week, and it is interesting to mix with people who don't live lives anything like mine again, if only for the perspective it always brings.

But hell, why bother? At the moment I'm bothering because I want to fly to the states and visit my family and see my uncle get married. And with a month's pay I can pay my "rent" here for two+ years, and it's always good when we can afford to pay the water and electricity bills. But spring! Ack! It's here and I want to be outside all day long and my body longs for movement, but I have agreed to give up these two days a week. Hmm.

Mostly I think we shouldn't beat ourselves up too much for the smaller compromises we sometimes have to make, if we live completely unabashedly the rest of the time. That lady you work for though, she sounds really horrific. The thought of an electric water thing for the cat made me cringe. I hope you figure out a decision you can feel comfortable with. Good luck.