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The Domesticated Ape
There has been a long-running saga with a 'job' I am supposed to be doing. In French it is called a Contrat d'Avenir, in English terms it is a lot like the New Deal scheme. I was supposed to start last October, but the state ran out of funding. I had the job, but I won't know more until January. January came... and went. I had another interview in the Spring and surprise! there was a French person (who got the job). I got a letter saying "thanks but no thanks", basically, followed by numerous excuses when I pushed this.
Well, today it finally came to a head. I was going to be taken out to meet my fellow cow-orkers. It was a worry for me as they had been described akin to undomesticated apes who would take great pleasure in mocking me for everything possible, ex-cons and psychopaths. Maybe this was a last-ditch attempt to get me (a foreigner) to give up on the idea? Well, when I met them they seemed okay. I cannot say how it would go in reality as their boss was hanging around, but you get a vibe from people and I don't think these guys would beat me senseless as soon as the chief was out of sight. I think, actually, they'd be rather offended. After all, we must remember my social worker assistant person wanted me placed here in an all-French environment to help me improve my understanding of the language and my communication skills. Hardly wise to pair me up with an ape, is it!?!
Their worry, that they hid quite well, was that I'd be all (timid voice) "can I help with the gardening?". So I was kitted out with a brushcutter. It is a heavy beast. I am not sure if I will be physically able to carry it for some eight hours a day, but I tell you what, I'll give it a damn good try. It clips into a sort of harness. Imagine a backpack without the 'sack' part. I feel that if I adjust it to fit me properly, it will be a lot better.
Anyway, I took this monster brushcutter and give some nearby grass a whole heap of attitude. Apparently many jaws dropped. I guess if anybody bothered to listen to my incomprehensible French (!) they'd know that I have to look after a few acres with a petrol strimmer and a smallish auto-tractée petrol lawnmower, and with the price of petrol being what it is I don't usually have enough petrol to get the whole lot under control all at the same time, so weeds and brambles ('ronces') are a problem for me.
In short, hell yes I know how to use a brushcutter. Can I take this baby home for the weekend?
So, if the conseil général d'Ille-et-Vilaine (our local regional council) is d'accord with this, I will begin a trial month in September, with the possibility of five further months afterwards. That's it, the Contrat d'Avenir is time-limited, to be used as a stepping stone to 'proper' employment. I would like to wish myself well. Those who know me will, of course, be wondering what'd kill me quicker - carrying the brushcutter or the 8h30 start!
Today's word is implore (im-p-lore); which is a word meaning appeal, beg, plead, supplicate; like you could say take my wallet but don't hurt me, I implore you!... though if you are being robbed by a dumbass you might want to stay away from phrases like "I implore you" just in case they think you are being rude!
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- A new British Passport, Working Saturday, Oops? You didn't mean to land there, did you? Feeling good and an unexpected trip into Big Town, My new strimmer, A note of sadness, Legitimate salvage. (2021/10/10)
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- Two years ago today, Sorry for the silence, Strimmer motor. (2021/09/27)
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Last read at 13:06 on 2021/10/18.
© 2008 Rick Murray
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