End of one career

No one would ever accuse me of being stubborn, but I will admit to being adamant that I was still a good journalist, editor, and even publisher, and that somewhere there would be a decent job for me. I’ve been sending out resumes almost every day for 18 months, however, with not even an invite for an interview. With my unemployment insurance expiring recently, and understanding that someone my age being out of work for more than 18 months is a long-shot to land a job, I think I’m finally letting go. I need to live on my retirement checks and anything I can manage otherwise, like selling my books.

That must be why I decided yesterday to totally revamp my Web site (www.aimlink.com). I had been promoting my expertise as a publishing consultant on the site (AIM Communications), hoping to land a small consulting gig or two, but Web sites are mostly passive unless you do some marketing, which I didn’t. So my shingle was hanging out there but no one was interested. (Don’t go there, Tim.)

The site retains its URL but now it is almost totally devoted to trying to sell my books. There is a “consulting expertise” area still, but the emphasis is on book promotion. I doubt I will ever make more than a few dollars in my current occupation (if you can call what I’m doing an occupation). But a few bucks would be OK and I will be doing something that I have a love/hate relationship with – writing.

I kind of like the little travel books I’m writing about each place I live. They allow me to combine my photography with my writing, and keep me motivated to contribute to this blog as content for a future book. They’re a quick read for someone interested in that part of the world, and 99 cents isn’t going to bother anyone, even if they don’t like the book. Blasphemy!

Maybe someone can check out the site – www.aimlink.com – and let me know what they think – good and bad.

BTW, I was recently featured in a Q&A feature on vagablogging.net (http://www.vagablogging.net/vagabonding-case-study-ken-anderberg.html). This is a site, I guess, for travelers like me. I like the “vagabonding” references and I’ve incorporated the word in a few places in my marketing. The day the article appeared on the site, the hits and page views on my blog were 8-10 times above normal. I guess they have a good following.

Internet troubles

For about a week or so, I’ve been dealing with less-than-dialup Internet access speeds. One day, I had no service. It came back on, and then two days later went down. After that, the speed was so slow I couldn’t even stream music from iTunes. Giuseppe to the rescue.

Okay, his Sicilian manhood isn’t going to like this (Giuseppe does read this blog) but I’m going to have to designate him my Italian “angel.” He continues to be very helpful – without being asked. Thank you, Giuseppe. He’s a whirling-dervish but it’s just the Italian in him.

I had about decided to walk to the nearby WIND store to ask what the problem was with my Internet service, vaguely aware that I would probably not be understood, nor would they. That’s when Giuseppe showed up. I guess he read that I was unhappy (livid would be more descriptive) with my Internet access. He promised to call the company if I would send the phone number of my account, which I did, through Facebook.

Turns out, my “unlimited” account was limited to 10 Gigs of whatever it is I bought. (This is my first time venturing into the lair of the cellphone, so please bear with me. And, no, my friends, I do not have a cellphone, I have a SIM card, basically the same thing without the phone part.) I needed to buy another SIM card, apparently, because I used up my alloted 10 Gigs in the first 13 days I had the service. Well, duh, they said there was no limit! Why would I bother being careful.

Giuseppe wasn’t done just calling the company, however, and this is why he garnered enough angel votes – he volunteered to come into town to help me negotiate more bandwidth. He knew (and so did I) that language would be a problem. He and Valeria came by this afternoon and we all walked the two blocks to the store, only to find it was closed from noon to 4, and it was 3 p.m. then.

So, Giuseppe gets a pen and a scrap of paper and jots down what I wanted to ask for in Italian, so that I could come back later to get the SIM card on my own. He had to be somewhere else at 4 or he would have stayed. I came back, and in true Latin fashion, the store clerks were late getting back, but eventually they showed up.

Of course, the young woman did not understand English (I cannot emphasize this enough. Take with a large grain of salt when people say, “They all speak English.” They don’t. Just saying.) I showed her the note and she responded with words I didn’t understand – except I did get the part that a recharge would cost more than the 15 euro I originally paid. Turned out to be twice as much. I got the SIM card (what else am I going to do?) but I can’t activate it until tomorrow. So tonight I’m negotiating the Web at horse buggy speed. (Actually, more like dying turtle speed.)

Oh, and after Christmas, Giuseppe, Valeria and I hope to do a road trip. However it’s acomplished, there will be a road trip in early January. Time to see the countryside.

About 2bagsandapack

Lifetime journalist, author, magazine editor and publisher, now semi-retired and traveling the world. My plan, after living in Costa Rica for 14 months, was to visit a new country in southern Europe every three months to experience the culture and the challenge of adapting to a new environment, while on a fixed income. That plan was sidetracked when I was offered a job in Indonesia, providing an opportunity to explore Asia. Indonesia lasted for a 4 wonderful years but I have now moved on to Hua Hin, Thailand.
This entry was posted in Catania, Sicily and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.