No Shirking

Speaking in comments to Mark about work got me thinking about all the jobs I’ve had. I started writing about them and realised, with anecdotes, it would be a book if I kept on.  So this is the abridged resume. Well, kind of abridged. 😉


First the cafe tables with a spot of cook and clean,

50 pence an hour, child labour, boss was mean


Food store next, a small one, boss here was a prat

Started work in Woolie’s, ^^^^ sacked for doing that!


Office job for summer, pre to college term,

Boring after first week, job was way too tame

But stuck it for the lucre, had to earn some brass,

Education one thing but still a working lass.


College and a pub job, function suite, was great,

Illegal age, they never asked, silver-service wait.


Off to island, out in Greece, disco work, what fun!

Only paid if patrons in but drinks free, coke and rum,

Disco dancing with myself, easy-peasy groove,

Hangovers wild, not much cash, taking rough with smooth.


Hellas again for three months, chambermaid that trap,

Picking up for others, cleaning loads of crap.

(Have you seen those toilets!)

Restaurant next, souvlaki skewered, peeling spuds for chips,

Smiled and served, practised Greek, spouting from my lips.

Off to Athens for a spell, biscuit factory,

Women watching while I worked, too quick, apparently.

Back to college, different pub, smartarsed alecs joked,

Learned to smart them back, I did, the cheek of some young blokes.


Off to Greece to teach a year, English, yes, and Scots

Slightly different sometimes, ‘specially spelling of the US folks.

Term time finished, had to find other means of keep,

Watched a dog, a doberman, scared the shit out me.

Had to stay in penthouse and cook and sew and clean

And shop and serve and fuck knows else for bitch, (not dog), it seemed.

Took a pub job, served some pints, ouzo and the rest,

Met some fab peeps on their travels, that place was the best.

Watched a baby for three weeks, mum was on the prowl,

Hubs was on the game, she said, I gave her space to howl.


Back to home for nursing, no teaching jobs to pin,

Six months later, offered one, temping, but foot in,

Still some serving of some food, bar work, hotel near,

Two years teaching temporary, contract distant, dear.

First full-time in teaching! Tough place but a blast,

Two years there then moved on, still not near my last!

Fourteen years I laboured next in one place, not so swell,

Weans were fine, staff politics, ’nuff said, bleeding hell!

Had to leave, just had to breathe, off to pastures where

One year later and saddest kids, I resigned in great despair.

Took three years with my own kids, then youngest only born,

Supply work next, just filling in, liked it but it didn’t last long.

Six months in, head office, offered full-time plan

Cover schools in long-term posts, each different, every one.

This is best, I get to go in and out and round,

Here and there and everywhere, look and I’ll be found.

I don’t get bored. And politics? I speak and say my piece,

Mouths agape at cheek of me, can’t stand little cliques.

So, yeah, locations, odds and sods, jobs and places I have worked

Forty maybe, more or less, but, rest assured, I’ve never shirked.


21 thoughts on “No Shirking”

  1. A life in rhyme – and never a dull moment! This is so well done, and, when reading it, makes you focus on all the little things that you did which are so often eclipsed by the ‘major’ jobs. Great stuff, Anne-Marie!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. It certainly was never dull, Chris. I hate repetitive jobs. One thing you can say about teaching, I think, is that it’s never really the same, there are so many variables that can make each day unique let alone each position. I’ll just have to wait and see where I’m headed next. Wish it was Greece – despite their problems, I love that country.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. See sis, this is why I remain in awe of you……..and put your career (to date) in so fine a way……..I await the next instalment with baited breath! xxxx Sheesh, you also sent me way back in time to Freddie’s Café……vinegar the walls….side 1 or side 2…..loved working with you – feckn time warp! xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Isn’t it though? A thankless task by any measure but it allowed me to stay where I wanted to be so it was all to the good – more or lesss – except for the….no, I won’t go there. Cleaning other folks’ deposits is something we both know about it. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I especially enjoyed the folk who took pleasure in doing up a room, and bathroom, proud just for the benefit of the pathetic little chambermaid. I’m sure you must have gotten a couple of those. (sigh) Glad those days are OVER!! For me, at least.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I know the ones. Can’t say I blame them in some ways. I’ve been tempted to get a cleaner in here many a time but I’d feel obliged to do half of it myself first. I wish one or two of my crew felt the same obligation. I keep threatening to take a photo of one’s room in particular and shame her on Facebook. 😉


      3. Oh–I was unclear: I meant those who…did the opposite, and would give you a HUGE grin as they passed you in the hallway. The first time it happened, and I had to clean a room where the occupant had smeared his —- on every surface, the other maids said “Oh, yeah–one of those. We all hate those effers!”

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      4. Oh my god! No, I don’t think I ever had one of those. I would have remembered. I did have a patient like that once when I was nursing but he was a wee soul and a bit demented. Couldn’t really help himself. Funnily enough, I had this exact conversation today with my eldest daughter. Confused patients who try to help themselves but can’t and succeed in doing exactly as you describe. But an able-bodied sicko. I think I’d be tempted to leave a wee deposit in his suitcase on his last night. See what customs made of that on his way home. Dirty bastards. Some folk. Yeuch!


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