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Reflection

The only constant is change

On my last day at work on the 28 January 2010, there were many tearful farewells and many gifts I received. The bookish gifts I’ve got was a The Daphne Du Maurier Companion by Steph, which I’m ever so pleased with; which also means when I finished up my entire collection of Daphne Du Maurier books and read this companion, I’m on my way to become a Daphne Du Maurier expert! 😉 Steph also gave me the book, Stuart, A Life Backwards by Alexander Masters. The book is a biography of Stuart Short. It explores how a young boy, somewhat disabled from birth, became mentally unstable, criminal and violent, living homeless on the streets of Cambridge. As the title suggests, the book starts from Shorter’s adult life, tracing it back in time through his troubled childhood, examining the effects his family, schooling and disability had on his eventual state.

Mandy gave me her sons’ favourite bedtime story, The Bear under the Stairs, for my two little boys. She said it was her two boys favourite bedtime stories (One is a teenager now, the other is 10) and hope it would be my boys’ favourite too. Needless to say, there wasn’t a dry eye from both of us after receiving this gift.

It is hard to walk away from a job where I have made so many lovely friends, but I must go. I was reminded why I must go, as my mind flash back to three years ago in early 2008…….

When I first started blogging, I was in a bad shape.

2008, fresh out from graduate school and the credit crunch came along. While looking for a job, I started reading for pleasure and for 8 months of unemployment I read a total of 96 books. I started blogging about books about the same time I got this job offer. For 2 years I have been working on a job that I didn’t like (but I like to help out everyone at work, it is just the content of the job that I didn’t like), but pays the bills. On this job, I still read and blog more than ever, even when there were relatively few readers out there who actually read what I have to say in 2009. The few attempts I tried to shut the blog down, I ended up not having the heart to do it.

Every serious blogger has an emotional tale to talk about the first time they blog and why they blog. It was emotional for me because I began blogging when I was feeling at the bottom of the pit. I kept blogging because the prolificacy and the small “success” of my blog brought me indescribable contentment and that more than compensates for the failure I felt in my career and in my life.

My farewell card

After 2 years the effect of the crunch are still felt in the UK, God has been great and last December I was offered a new job in London. This job will put me back on my preferred track and do what I love to do most, i.e. process improvement and operationalise strategic plans. As much as I wanted this change, I expect the change will impact my reading and blogging habit:

  • I would possibly only be able to write one review (or post) a week, maybe none.
  • I will probably read less. Although the train journey is longer (half an hour) but the train is mostly packed and I may not get a seat.
  • I will read more from my own shelf as I can’t keep track of all the different library due dates for different books.
  • I will have to sleep early because now I can’t hide my sleepy eyes behind my desk if I stay up to blog past midnight, when I’m expected to facilitate brainstorming sessions and occasional trainings.
  • I will not be able to comment on your blogs as often as I like, but I will try my best.

Today is my first day at work in my new job. Whatever happens, I will keep this blog breathing because it has sustained my sanity and also because I have all your encouragement and comments to spur me on. Thank you my friends. I really appreciate the support!

If there is any consolation, I will now have access to London Westminster Library resources. The last I checked, they have all the Japanese and Arabic Literature I am dying to read; which means I don’t have to buy my own copy. The Confession of the Mask, all four(4) of the Sea of Fertility tetralogy by Yukio Mishima, I saw Ramallah by Mourid Barghouti, The dark side of love by Rafik Schami etc etc.. will all be available in Westminster Library.

And then there are the bank (public) holidays, spring breaks and holiday seasons when I could do some catch up.

When I look back, so much blood, sweat and tears had gone into churning out those blog content, same goes to all your blogs that I have been following so far.  Lets keep this community running as long as we can, shall we? 🙂

The only constant in life is changes, but I will never stop reading books and blogging about it. 😉

I'll be meeting paddington bear on my way to work everyday.

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About JoV

A bookaholic that went out of control.... I eat, sleep and breathe books. Well, lately I do other stuff.

Discussion

20 thoughts on “The only constant is change

  1. Hope the new job is all that you wish for and that you manage to find some reading time in there somewhere. Audio books are great for crowded public transport when you can’t sit and read – apart from being books for your ears it also means you don’t have to listen to all the other people on the train (if that kind of thing bothers you)

    Posted by bernadetteinoz | February 7, 2011, 8:05 am
  2. Farewells are always emotional, but they also mean something new is about to begin. Congratulations on your new job and wish you all the success. Hope you can balance your work and reading/reviewing. I will miss your reviews if you don’t blog often.

    Posted by Anamika | February 7, 2011, 10:03 am
  3. I really hope that you enjoy your new job. I’m sure it will be hard to keep up the blogging with your new life, but I’ll still be here looking forward to your posts whenever you manage to write them. I hope we get the chance to meet up at some point. Good luck and enjoy all those books in Westminster library 🙂

    Posted by Jackie (Farm Lane Books) | February 7, 2011, 11:58 am
  4. Oh good luck with the new job, Jo! I really hope you’ll be happier there and don’t worry about updating regularly, just post when you want to and have enough time. Remember what you told me, don’t stress yourself out! 🙂 And change is often daunting but very rewarding in the end! (and who knows what treasures you’ll find in the new library 🙂 ).

    Posted by Bina | February 7, 2011, 12:39 pm
  5. all the best with new job ,I m struggling keeping up at moment mainly due to work ,family life balance,sure going past Paddington every day will be inspiring ,all the best stu

    Posted by winstonsdad | February 7, 2011, 1:19 pm
  6. How wonderful that today is the first of a new start for you. I hope it all goes great, and I will be here whenever you show up, even if you don’t always see me say something! :–)

    Posted by rhapsodyinbooks | February 7, 2011, 3:29 pm
  7. Changes can be immensely scary, but as you seem to recognize, they can also be very rewarding and invigorating. I’m sure this new job will present you with many new adventures, and I wish you all the best!

    Posted by Steph | February 7, 2011, 5:49 pm
  8. Wish you all the very best in your new job and company, Jo! Glad to know that you will be doing what you gives your professional satisfaction, in your new job. Hope you enjoy the new work environment and make friends among your new co-workers.

    We will always keeps and eye for your wonderful posts and so please don’t worry about posting less. I think blogging (writing posts and reading fellow blogger’s posts) is something all of us love and which we will continue to do inspite of the pressures of our professional and personal lives.

    Wish you all the very best again!

    Posted by Vishy | February 7, 2011, 6:59 pm
  9. Those are wonderful goodbye gifts from your co-workers! It is lovely to know that you really mean something to them, even though the content of your job was not exactly something you liked. I hope this new job will bring you happiness and opportunities that will lead you to even better places. If that means that you will blog less, so be it. We will all be here waiting for you, whenever you post 🙂

    Posted by Chinoiseries | February 7, 2011, 7:38 pm
  10. Hope your first day went well!!

    Posted by Ti | February 8, 2011, 1:26 am
  11. I hardly EVER comment here, but I do come by to read every so often. It’s great that you’re starting a job you’d enjoy, that’s more important than anything else really. I’ve just started doing something I’m really passionate about as well, so let’s hope the new year brings both of us good luck. =)

    As for reading and blogging less, well, we all have our commitments. I’ve been blogging less and reading less, but sometimes we don’t have to apologise for it. We do what we can.

    Posted by Michelle | February 8, 2011, 8:21 am
  12. JoV, I am in the same boat too. Thursday will be MY last day on the job – and it is much the same as you described – I liked my job, but it was too comfortable…and sometimes, I wonder ah drat, should I really give up my 2PM siesta? LOL. But then, change we must…or else will change will change us.

    All the very best in your new job.

    Posted by Soul Muser | February 8, 2011, 2:02 pm
  13. Good luck with the new job Jo. Hope it’s everything you hoped it to be. As you know I’m already doing the things you think will happen to you (blog less, read less, comment less, sleep early). For me I’m pretty content with it. You have to set the priority right, and just do what you can. Hope you find a good balance too.

    Posted by mee | February 9, 2011, 3:27 am
  14. Congrats on the new job ! I think you will be surprise yourself on the amount of reading you will still manage to get done.
    Plus, think of all the Japanese and Arabic literature will now be at your disposal !!

    Posted by maphead | February 10, 2011, 4:53 am
  15. I am so happy for you JoV! You are spot on. I also went through some troubling times and that’s what got me started on blogging. Like you, it was a way to finding myself again. I wish you all the best of luck in your new job. The credit crunch has affected all of us very much. But I’m determined not to let it get me down!

    Posted by mywordlyobsessions | February 10, 2011, 10:23 pm
  16. Hey JoV, how is your first week at work?

    I’m really happy for you that you’ve found light at the end of the tunnel. Leaving a place to start anew is always emotional. I wish you the very best in this new start.

    And you are so right about every blogger starts off with an emotional tale. I’m not spared either 🙂

    P.S. I remember the Paddington bear!! 😀

    Posted by heyzanie | February 12, 2011, 5:11 am
  17. Hey, good to hear that you are starting a new job. You are going to meet new people, experience new things, have new ideas to write in your websites!

    Keep writing (and reading)! You don’t have to do it everyday like what you used to do. It is always about balance in life. I look forward to reading more about your new adventure 🙂 Best of luck!

    Posted by Wilfrid | February 15, 2011, 4:38 pm
  18. Congratulations on your new job – I hope it is going wonderfully well and you are starting to settle. What thoughtful gifts from your friends at your old job. Having access to a new library sounds exciting.

    I look forward to hearing how it is all going and hope you are adjusting to your new reading schedule as well 0:)

    Posted by Tracey | February 16, 2011, 8:20 pm
  19. Good luck! I’ve just discovered your blog via Bernadette’s (Reactions to Reading) so I’ll add it to my RSS reader.

    Posted by Maxine | February 18, 2011, 8:40 am

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Ratings Defined

0 = Abandon the book after first chapter

1 = Waste of paper, we will see what the environmentalist say about this!

2 = Skip it, read the book if you have got nothing better to do

2.5 = An average book, easily forgettable.

3 = A good read.

3.5 = A good entertaining read, a page-turner

4 = So glad that I read the book, a book with substance and invaluable for future reference

4.5 = So glad that I read the book, would pester everyone to read it, invaluable, I would want to own it and wouldn't mind a second read (something that I seldom do)

5 = The book is so good that I feel like I am on scale 4 and 4.5, and more, it blew me away and lingers on my head for weeks!

Books Read

JoV's bookshelf: read
Hold Tight
The Fault in Our Stars
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
The Thief
Mockingjay
Catching Fire
A Tale for the Time Being
Into the Darkest Corner
The Liars' Gospel
Goat Mountain
Strange Weather In Tokyo
Strange Shores
And the Mountains Echoed
Ten White Geese
One Step Too Far
The Innocents
The General: The ordinary man who became one of the bravest prisoners in Guantanamo
White Dog Fell from the Sky
A Virtual Love
The Fall of the Stone City


JoV's favorite books »
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old-books

Reading, after a certain age, diverts the mind too much from its creative pursuits. Any man who reads too much and uses his own brain too little falls into lazy habits of thinking. - Albert Einstein (1879 - 1955)

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