Monday, January 08, 2007

Devant moi, le déluge

At sea. Not literally, although almost. Had the recent spate of rain downpours deluge continued, the laughable drainage system of Tel Aviv would have collapsed completely and we would all be under water. I knew an Israeli who had been a water engineer since the 1950's, and he told me that the drainage system was so bad because the Water Works Department didn't want to invest in upgrading it to accommodate "only a few floods a year." Given the latest corruption scandals at the Tax Authority, I suspect the Water Works executives have been using our fairly high property taxes to upgrade their home swimming pools and invest in rubber hip-boot factories.

But that's not why I'm at sea. After being happily self-unemployed for some time, I have received an offer to do some paid consulting by someone I've worked for in the early 2000's. And I don't know whether to do it or not. The up side is the money and the noble purpose of the project. The down side is everything else: the work itself (technology that I mastered once but found boring), the people involved, the stress, the frustration, and, possibly, the failure, because a lot of it this time involves being able to read more Hebrew than I am comfortable with (road signs, vegetable prices, passport application forms).

In earlier times I wouldn't have though twice: take the money and run to learn, master. But that attitude didn't get me fame or fortune, it just kept me busy. And what would I do with the money, which wouldn't amount to all that much after I bought taxi rides, dog walkers, restaurant meals, and working-lady clothes, things I don't need to buy when I just hang around reading and knitting most of the time. What has become of my work ethic? Do I need one?

It's a fine dilemma. I'm pretty sure I know what I'm going to do. Thanks for listening.

10 comments:

John said...

WHO WILL MAKE THE SOUP!?!?

Udge said...

Yes, that was my first thought too :-) You'll have to negotiate morning-only on Fridays.

Udge said...

But seriously, though. Did you find your work ethic (look under the cushions on the sofa)? Are you going to take the job?

samirah said...

couldn't you just try it out and then if you really hate it leave?

i'm taking israeli lit 201 next semester and that is entirely more hebrew then i'm comfortable with.

Savtadotty said...

I will make soup...this is just temporary and part-time work. I'm going to offer to do the minimum technical part of the job, not the high-responsibility supervisory part. It's kind of a compromise. The whole thing ends in the Spring.

spanglemonkey said...

That was me, btw. In my other persona. Jo

Savtadotty said...

I deleted Jo's comment because it had a link to her most private blog, and I didn't want the entire world, that is, my comment readers, to go there. She wrote:
So, have you decided? Sounds like it. It seems like a pretty good opportunity, particularly if it's short.

And I want soup too! Damn this ocean!


Yes, I've chosen to do the minimum-responsibility version of the job, a compromise between my lost work-ethic and my tiny bank account.

Maria said...

My best wishes in this new endeavour. Enjoy it and try not to let the stress get to you.

Lioness said...

The laughable drainage system of Tel Aviv should meet the the laughable drainage system of Lisbon, and maybe we could breed them and recoil in horror.

If the soup will still be made and the bank account will be fattened, it's all good, ALL GOOD!

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