January 25, 2011

University of Hard Knocks

A few months before my SPM final exams, mum told me that she could not afford to send me for further studies. She didn't even mentioned that I could apply for a loan or a scholarship for a tertiary education. I was quite upset when she mentioned it. She said I should get a job instead of going to college or university. She is a single mum. Since dad left when I was 6, he ran from paying alimony and mum had 3 jobs, working from Monday to Sunday in order to put food on the table. Guess she is tired of working and is time I earn my own living.

She noticed how upset I was and said, the best university in the world is free, "The University of Hard Knocks". She said it is time to go out there and get some survival skills. Life in school is way too comfortable compare to the jungle out there, so in order to survive, go get knock by others and learn from it.

Just a few days after my major exam, mum got me my first job working as a temporary clerk for a batteries distributor company. She had quite a number of friends working there and manage to pull some strings. I just sat for my exams and the results will only be out in a few months time, so I don't have a certificate to apply for a proper job, yet. The company had just launch a consumer contest and need someone to sit and checked through all those entry forms, count it and record it in a book. Once the contest is over and I had recorded the last entry form, I will be out of job.

Since some of the aunties working here were friends of mum, they treated me like a little princess. I was to sit in one of the meeting room and sort out all those entry forms, alone and away from all the other staffs. Those aunties would take turn to keep an eye on me. Even when I need stationaries, I don't have to lift my butt, someone will get it for me.

Every day at lunch break, there is always someone to babysit me, take me out for lunch. No one allowed me to go out for lunch alone for fear I would get lost. Everyday at tea break, they would take turn to bring me tea, coffee, cakes, tarts etc even though I told them I was not hungry. I worked there for only one and half months.

I was only 17 then and earning a few hundreds by just doing something so simple and being pampered everyday gave me the impression that life after school is heaven. That's because at 17, no one really takes me seriously and guess at that age, I am not a threat to anyone yet, in terms of chances for promotion etc.

Those lovely 'Happy Working Life' didn't last for long. The true taste of 'hard knocks' came after my second full time job. I have 2 other jobs before this and still in my teens and everyone still finds me 'adorable' , like the baby of the department. At the time when I was with the second full time job, I was in my early 20s and others starts to take me seriously and finds me to be a threat even though I was friendly and hardworking. Maybe those two points intimidate others.

Thanks for reading and will share more of my 'life after school' experiences with all. So, how was your first day at work on your first job? Was it challenging or sweet?


I'm a full-time mummy said...

I actually started my 1st job as part-time promoter at a shopping mall in Form 4 during school holidays. Earn some pocket money for myself so I don't have to trouble my parents. After 5, I went to a college for a year, got my Diploma in IT then can't continue cos my parents do not have money for me to further my studies.

I think starting out young is good as my years of experience helps a lot cos before I left the working world to be a full-time mum, my salary was higher than my friends who went to uni or had degree and all.

It doesn't matter whether how much you further your studies, just make sure you're making the best out of your situation :)

Aries said...

Yeah, very true indeed, not to mentioned the money accumulated in EPF, earlier then our friends who start work late.

baili said...

wow you are lucky dear ,i saw that if in the job or home if we are loyal then surrounding turn into favor,

thanks for sharing god bless

Aries said...

Well in job, loyal or not others might find you a treat for trying to climb the corporate ladder.

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