Mrs.B has got a job! A full-time, fully paid job at an insurance firm that shall remain un-named. You won't believe how relieved we both are, as she has been unemployed for a full year.
When she received her letter of resignation, I wasn't worried at first. After all, there are plenty of jobs for legal experts, right, even in these difficult economic times? And frankly, I was relieved that her previous contract came to an end, because her old boss was trying to push the blame for his department not reaching its targets on her shoulders. And then he tried to set the rest of the team up against her. Unsuccesfully so, I might add, because my wife still has good contacts with most of her old colleagues. But still, it was time to pack and go.
'Take it easy for a while', I told Mrs.B. 'Don't worry about finding a job, with your qualifications you're sure to find something soon. But first take a rest and get those nasty times out of your system'.
But four months later, by the end of the year, she'd received a lot of invitations and done a lot of tests, but no job still. A couple of times she came really close, but then... She wasn't the only candidate. In fact, there were loads of other candidates. She would meet the same people over and over again waiting for the same job interviews, even when she applied for rather specialised positions.
Meanwhile, our savings were drying up. I stopped working in the house. We stopped going out. We bought only the bare necessities. And then we had the car crash and a new loan to pay off. We stopped inviting people.
When we went on summer holidays, we decided we didn't want to sit in our caravan all day, afraid of spending a single euro, but when we came back it was clear that day X would be somewhere in November. To make matters worse, job openings were getting even scarcer. We had 'minimum birthday parties' for Tyl and Mrs.B in September.
And then suddenly, an insurance company AND a sollicitor's office were both interested to see her. More tests followed, and it was difficult for Mrs.B to motivate herself once more for these lengthy procedures, reviews and tests. I was secretely hopeful, but then again we'd been disappointed so many times before. In the end you don't dare to hope. So at the same time I started to contemplate the alternatives: sell the car, the horse, the house, the children - maybe even as a final desperate measure my vintage porn collection.
But then she had not one but two offers. The sollicitor offered her a part-time position, but the insurrance company was interested in more.
So this Monday, after a year's sitting, waiting and brooding at home, she packed her lunch, jumped on her bike and rode to the office. It's only a short bike ride from home, so it's even very practical to bring the children to and from school/day care in the morning and evening.
So until she receives her first pay check, we'll still have to eat spagetti twice every day. But you can't believe what a relieve this is. Yay!