Thursday, 29 October 2015

Swimming the Channel

It's almost half way through my 8 week internship. I began the job knowing frankly, very little about European programmes and the workings of the EU in general. It was a little overwhelming because it's been a month of firsts... First 9-5 job, first multilingual job (which feels amazing) and first time applying what was mostly self-taught to a professional environment. Admittedly I was overwhelmed, but I managed to get through my first day without too many hiccups (or a hospitalisation! YAY) and almost a month in I am getting used to life in the office.

Most days I feel like I am simply playing dress-up, swiping in and playing the role of responsible adult. It all feels pretty surreal. The first week I was definitely lost, and I have never spent so much time swatting up (both in and out of the office) on EU regulations (Who knew there were so many?!) and what "our" programme does (oh and not to mention all the endless acronyms...). The team is fairly small, but its evolution fascinates me. According to the "Big Boss," the France (Channel) England programme is 2 years old, almost to the day. In its infancy he was the only one working on it, until the Programme manager joined almost a year later. Since then, the team has steadily grown, and pretty soon there'll be more than 20 of us. I say us because I feel pretty attached to it all now; after all I share in both its success and its challenges. Conversely, I also feel like I am sort of an "honorary member," because as an intern I am only there for 8 weeks. Still, I have been lucky enough this week to be a part of the office buzz; which is that our programme, operating from a little corner of the UK, with facilitators & partners across the programme area (south coast of England and North Coast of France), has been officially adopted by the European Commission (Check it out: we have our own official press release!). I feel really proud of everyone and to be a part of this. I know I for one will be tracking its progress even after I've finished my internship.

So... Cheers or Santé to the next month of being a France (Channel) England team member!

Thursday, 15 October 2015

Leave My Words

I am exhausted all the time. I barely have the capacity to type. That is why this will be short. I'll try to explain: After a long break from writing I've returned to the keyboard desperate to put down something that meets my standards. But the concentration in itself is totally shot. Then you add in the inability to remember words (sometimes little ones, sometimes big ones), the constant mistyping, and the abrupt end to my normal habit of having some soft acoustic music on to inspire me (turns out the music renders concentration impossible & makes my headache go from awful to unbearable). I think where I was going with that jumbled mess, was that all these things have combined to create my inner writer's worst enemy. I read somewhere that if you can't write then read. And I have been reading plenty. When I can't seem to find the words, someone else says it so much better. Fatigue has invaded virtually every aspect of my life. And now my words. Please. It can take everything. But please not my words. They're as much a part of me as my physical body.