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Interviews and orangutans


Diary of a home bird
Ciara Galvin

I’m going to have to start lying to people and lather myself in fake tan. I’m faced with the dreaded question daily, ‘So, how long are you back from travelling?’. The dwindling tan gives it away … and scarily, it’s nearly six whole weeks now.
The Sis, my very kind land lady (I pay rent in babysitting duties and terrible cooking), says it takes the average person three to six months to get a job. A month-and-a-half in and yes, I’m still unemployed, but interviews have been cropping up, which is exciting.
I’m getting to grips with the public transport system in Dublin. One would think that it would be a piece of cake after travelling every highway and metro system from Brazil to Colombia, but I had Phileas to guide me.
As I’m aware my navigation skills aren’t the best, I left two hours before an interview in Dublin City recently. Kitted out in my sister’s work clothes, I waved goodbye to my niece and said I was off to get a job. ‘In the sitting room Auntie Ciara?’ she asked. Saran is so used to the usual line, ‘I’m going into the sitting room to look for a job’, that she was surprised to see me all dressed up and actually leaving the house.
Off I went, following my ‘’ navigation app. I ran into difficulty just off Stephen’s Green and sought help from a taxi man. Twenty-five minutes and a few wrong turns later, I got to the interview an impressive 30 minutes early. I then realised that the nearby Luas line would have had me there in five minutes.  
For another interview, this one in Blanchardstown, it was a case of trains, planes and automobiles. Sitting on the bus I decided to again map it on my phone to ensure I was going in the right direction. Next thing I knew ‘Tortoise colony’ came up, followed by ‘Orangutan enclosure’. ‘We’re not in Kansas anymore Toto’, I thought to myself, and began to panic. After further analysis, I realised we were passing Dublin Zoo, much to my relief.
Fifty minutes early for this interview in the middle of an industrial estate, I decided to take the time to prep myself. There I was, suited and booted, walking the pavements outside a tile emporium (not where I was going for the job) timing myself. The embarrassment if anyone recognised me talking to myself.
Following this, I had to hightail it back to the temporary homestead on the other side of town for a phone interview. Arriving back, I told my niece’s child minder that I would have to hide away for a while preparing for the interview and to take the very important call. Saran was having none of it though, and stated ‘I’m going to find you’.
So there I was pacing my bedroom on the phone to a US tech company hoping my three-year-old niece wouldn’t burst in thinking she’d won a game of hide and seek.
Now I’m back in the sitting room, waiting to hear back from prospective employers, and wondering where the next interview will see me get lost in the capital.

In her fortnightly Diary of a Home Bird column, Ciara Galvin reveals the trials and tribulations of a twenty-something year old still living with her parents.