“Taxi!” I gracefully extend my arm feeling like I’m in a glamorous movie scene. Maybe Audrey Hepburn in ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’? Standing on the ‘sidewalk’ in a bustling New York street. I imagine I’m dressed head to toe in a chic black dress and stylish sunglasses, donning glitzy earrings and a gorgeous designer hat. My mind wanders wistfully. I wish I could whistle with my fingers like she does. And I seem to be missing the glorious Robert Redford. Hmmmm. Sadly my little black dress is not so chic. It’s two sizes too big. I had to steal it from my mum’s wardrobe this morning when I was dropping off my poorly one year old. He threw up all over me leaving a milky splattering like a giant sea gull’s poo down the back of my ‘lucky’ purple suit I wear to all my job interviews. I took it as a bad omen. The sunglasses I’m wearing are looking a little out of place on a damp Monday morning. No sun today, just a great big shiner behind my glasses on my left eye from last night when Sophie decided to use her snow globe as part of a dance routine whilst she was watching a repeat of ‘Strictly Come Dancing’.
“Sweetheart, I think you’ll need a soft ball for that dance. Anton du Beck isn’t a shot putter you know!” It was too late. Swinging side to side, singing ‘Let it go!’ in her sweetest Queen Elsa voice the weighty snow globe gained momentum, slipped gracefully from her tiny hands and into the air, meeting my defenceless eye just as I was bending down to scratch off some dried up ketchup that had welded itself to my slippers.
I carefully push my sunglasses further up my nose. No, sadly I’m not Audrey. I’m just plain Jenny Brown, standing on a pavement in dreary Morecaster, desperately waving her hand at the oncoming cab hoping to get to the city council in time for my interview.
I don’t even want the job, and after five years of staying at home looking after the children I certainly don’t have the skills, talents or qualifications for a ‘Home Improvement Officer’ (it sounds more like a job for a Police Constable interested in Property Development or Interior Design.) Yet somehow I’ve been invited for an interview. Maybe it has something to do with my slightly exaggerated CV.
|Current CV||What it actually means
|Relevant Skills and Interests:||Relevant Skills and Interests:|
|Research and Problem Solving||I recently worked out how to descale the kettle|
|Time Management||I always manage to make time for coffee|
|Organisational Skills||I can organise laundry into three piles: To wash, To Iron, To wash again because it's been sat in the machine for three days now.|
|Communication||I speak fluent ‘Toddler’ and ‘Baby’|
|Collaboration||I worked closely with my husband to produce our children|
|Dedication and Reliability||Despite many years of severe sleep deprivation, I haven’t yet killed my kids|
The car is hurtling towards me now. Why’s he still driving so fast? He’s never going to stop in….! Before I know it, he’s driven straight past me through an ocean of a puddle. I’m drenched from the waist down. By the smell of it, the water is more likely to have come from a blocked sewage drain than a puddle of rain water. I can just imagine the delight on the taxi driver’s face as he checks out his morning’s work in his rear view mirror. Drip! Drip! Drip! Typical! I root around in my handbag for my umbrella. At least I might be able to salvage my freshly straightened hair. I have a special zip in my handbag for my umbrella which ordinarily would have been a great idea if there was actually one in there. Nope! Just used tissues, receipts and a collection of Play Mobil characters covered in something sticky and pink. The rain is getting heavier as I start walking. It should only take twenty minutes, I think. Pity I was supposed to be there in ten.
Half an hour later I’ve made it. I’m standing outside the giant revolving doors of Morecaster City Council, a little lopsided after trapping one of my high heels between the wonky paving slabs twenty metres down the road. I’m feeling grateful to have not bloodied my knee too badly after hurtling towards the gravelled flowerbed. The blooming petunias were looking very lovely, but maybe the council needs to consider investing more money in upgrading the pavements instead. I consider putting this to the Mayor’s office as I catch my breath and glance at my reflection in the large glass windows. I quickly change my mind. My hair is limp with rain on my forehead. Mud is trickling down my pasty white legs and I can tell without even looking that mascara is pouring down my cheeks. Caffe Nero is next door. I can almost smell the warm, rich, dark liquid wafting towards me. Calling me, like a close friend with arms open wide. “Well, I was never going to get the job anyways!” I head for coffee.