Blame it on eBay

I blame it all on eBay.

About five years ago, I had a bit of an, ahem, eBay addiction. Fortunately for our bank account and my marriage, it was short-lived. This is what happened.

My husband left for a week-long business trip…
At the same time, I discovered eBay…
And auctions…
And the adrenalin-rush that you get when you come in at the very last second, make your bid, and WIN your targeted prize!

(And, yes, you could make the argument that there is some pattern of me being left to my own devices and questionable incidents…however, I would categorically deny any connection between the two and maintain that it is pure coincidence.)

I was in deep. I would even set my alarm clock and get up in the middle of the night – invariably when the US-based auction ended – and come swooping in at the last second with a higher bid, leaving my bidding competitors in my eBay dust. With. Nothing.

Oh, the unadulterated pleasure of seeing the green “You WIN!” message, the virtual sticking-out-of-tongue at my anonymous eBay foes who would have stolen my treasure.

Ok, it’s not something I am proud of.

Let’s just say that I lived and learned.

(Of course, over that infamous week I procured enough shoes, purses, dresses, and coats to set me up for life. Just ask my mother whose house was the shipping destination of all these purchases. Every closet, crook, and cranny – including the space under the beds – was crammed with packages. Although, I have to admit, it was kind of fun when I returned home for our annual summer visit and got to open all the goodies…like a really big Christmas.)

I haven’t relived my shameful internet frenzy since.

At least not until last night.

I have to admit that I have been feeling a bit antsy of late. Despite the move. Despite being in a beautiful city that begs exploring. Despite having plenty of stuff to keep me busy. Home stuff. Kid stuff. Financial stuff. Family stuff. School stuff. Dog stuff. Social stuff. Personal stuff. A lot of stuff. Good stuff, too.

Still, I am looking for something more structured, something that could even be added to my dusty resume. Dare I say it? A job.

Unfortunately, my resume has a bit of a checkered past. ‘Trailing spouse’ to an expat husband is not something I can really add to my CV. Not that I have been idle during the past ‘trailing’ decade. I actually did accomplish some things, in addition to being a ‘domestic manager with 2 vertically- and age- challenged direct reports.’

Hmmm. I mentally tick through my qualifications:

  • Corporate business: MS Finance. MBA. Eleven years work experience.
  • Private business: Two-year, highly educational yet ultimately unsuccessful entrepreneurial experiment.
  • Public health: MS Public Health. No work experience (unless you count the private lectures on health-related topics given to the aforementioned direct reports).
  • Teaching: TEFL / Business TEFL teacher. Three years work experience.
  • School volunteer (read ‘Master Baker of Cupcakes and ooey gooey chocolate chip cookies and fudge brownies’…I don’t care if some people think that Betty Crocker mixes don’t count as ‘homemade’…you open the box and bake them at home, right?).
  • Community volunteer: Recycling program developer and coordinator (does sorting through garbage count?).
  • Certified personal trainer. No work experience (but a lot of practice).

As I review this list, it occurs to me that on paper I look like a professional schizophrenic.

At least to anyone who I can’t explain the ‘how’ and ‘why’ of all of the above.

(Which, by the way, would make perfect sense if I could explain to them…about not liking to be bored but also not being willing to sign up for a 70+ hour per week finance job and 3-hour commute in Moscow legendary traffic with 2 little ones at home…and being a bit too capitalistic to be a 100% volunteer…and having a variety of interests…)

Yes, it’s going to be daunting trying to create a resume that explains my, ahem, eclectic professional past and mostly formal joblessness for the past 10 years to a would-be employer.

Then there’s the million-dollar “what do I want to do” question. I still don’t want a 70-hour-per-week job, despite having teenagers who are, for most of the time, pretty self-sufficient. I am not looking for a high-powered position or a big paycheck. I also don’t really want to spend a lot of time in traffic commuting to-and-fro each day.

I really just want something that is interesting and offers flexibility in schedule and location.

I’ve got it! The internet is the solution to my problem. I’ll look for a job online.

Which I did.

And stumbled onto Craigslist.

And a few (dozen) other job websites.

And replied to a good proportion of jobs offered on them.

Plus, I think I volunteered for something that will definitely be resume-enhancing but also quite time-consuming.

In other words? Another internet binge. But at least this one didn’t cost us any money.

However, I might have bitten off more than my schedule can chew.

Time will tell.

And, if I stop blogging, you’ll know why.

On the other hand, I’ll be gainfully employed again.

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