Back to School

Today’s post for Just Jot It January, I’m not following the prompt (felicity), but going off on a tangent of my own…

I keep hoping and hoping that someone will contact me for a ‘real’ job. Since I was laid off from Ocean Rig in September and started looking for work, I haven’t had even one call (normally, I would have had a couple dozen for Christmas fill-ins).

I was very lucky and found a job through a friend. I thought I’d better go ahead and take it since things were so slow. I took that job, but it didn’t work out. I finished my hitch, but decided it wasn’t somewhere I really wanted to be. I decided to take my chances. I didn’t go back.

It wouldn’t have been worth it even if I had returned. They lost their contract and laid everyone off after only 1 more hitch. 😦

I saw in the news this morning that Ocean Rig lost the contract for the Olympia, so I’m sure they’ll be laying off even more people there. Schlumberger just announced they’re letting go another 10,000 people.

Ocean Rig Olympia (google photo)

I guess I need to face up to the facts and get serious about finding something else to do with myself. It looks like there’s not going to be any ‘real’ job for me for the foreseeable future. Probably at least 1 year, maybe 2.

I wouldn’t be so upset and worried about it if they hadn’t changed the rules as to what we need in order to work offshore. Before, I would have just found something else to do for a while, knowing I could always go back when things got better. That’s hardly an option anymore with the new regulations.

Now, we have to have our documents renewed every 5 years. To do that, we need to have at least 1 year (365 days) of sea time within the last 5 (on vessels of appropriate tonnage). We also need to have a few (very expensive) training classes renewed within that same time period.

I also need to have a USCG approved physical done every year and if they find anything wrong with me, they might decide I’m not allowed to work any more. To top it off, the Nautical Institute (which is where we get our DP certificates) has knuckled under and decided that we all have to renew our DP certs every 5 years too (with at least 150 days). That might not seem like much, unless you understand how almost impossibly hard it is to get ANY sea time on a DP vessel!

So! I have just about decided to give up completely on trying to find some sort of job where I can put my 30++ years of experience to use. What an incredible waste of effort. 😦

I basically have to start over from scratch. I’ll be 55 this summer and I’m not exactly looking forward to that process. I know I have a major attitude adjustment to make.

I’ve never really done anything else but work at sea. Yeah, I’ve had a few jobs on the beach like tending bar, housekeeping, painting, dishwashing, etc, but never anything serious. I tutored all through school and I liked it (but that paid less than any other job).

Ever since we were working in Thailand, filming the tsunami, I’ve been tossing around the idea of teaching English overseas somewhere. Spending so much time outside the US convinced me that I had to find a way to spend more time outside. I started investigating what would it take to move.

It could be so simple, if only I was old enough, or rich enough, to retire.

But, I have a long way to go before I qualify for either of those things. I still need to work! I found out that the only way to get a work visa in most countries is by teaching English. So, I started looking into teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL).

I’ve been pretty half-assed about it, mostly because I had a hard time choosing to give up the pretty sweet salary and work schedule I had working offshore. Now, it looks like that choice has been taken away from me- there IS no more choice!

I’ve been in contact with a school in Mexico. I’m going to give it til Monday and if I don’t hear some good news by then I’m going to bite the bullet and sign up Β for school. The course is a month long. After that, I’ll have the option to start teaching right away or do something else for a while.

A month can’t be that bad, can it?

Maybe Mexico will be so wonderful and exciting that I’ll forget all about ever coming back! That would be perfect! πŸ™‚

PS- the ‘featured image’ at the top is one I took in Nicaragua (not Mexico), but a lot of those Spanish speaking countries have more in common than the language. πŸ™‚

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13 thoughts on “Back to School

    • Thank you Annette, I’ll check it out.
      Back when I first started my blog a few people nominated me for some things, but I was never able to do all the things I was supposed to do for them.
      I’m not sure I can manage this time either, but I do very much appreciate you nominating me.
      Thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Capt. Jill,
    You’ll always wear your captain’s hat no matter if you’re at home on land or sea. I hope this new adventure will be as sweet as any you’ve done before. Wishing you the best! Have you ever watched, “Good Morning, Vietnam” with Robin Williams? That’s what popped into my head when you talked about teaching English in other countries. Maybe it would be a fun movie to watch to get you in the mood for this course and future jobs.

    Liked by 1 person

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