As promised I thought I would move on to part 2 of the story on Great Expectations. Having moved abroad myself I also had my expectations. This however is about my friend who thought she would be in a good paying job on arrival in England. How wrong she was!
My dear friend,with all her high hopes, thought her first experience at the agency was just a one off. So the following weeks she moved on from agency to agency,hoping for a high profile job. This did not happen. It was the same story-cleaning jobs, care work ,waitressing or working in the kitchen washing dishes.
She did not give up and finally one day she got a temporary job as a receptionist. It was not what she expected but at least she would not be wiping people's backs, she thought.
Being used to the ''African way of dressing'', she put on her favourite suit for her first day in the office. She had seen a weakness in the way people dress here. Too casual for her liking and she did not think it was good thing.
Things were going well so far and the stares she got from colleagues were a sign she was looking professional,she thought. After being told what to do she was left by herself to work.Then all of a sudden there she was,face to face with a reality she had not even thought about- HER ACCENT!
Different European accents that she had never heard before - having only been used to people who spoke in her accent back in Kenya,the day became a nightmare.
It was not what she expected. People on the other side of the phone could not understand her African accent and she could not understand them as well. How could she do the work?
Her day was filled with disappointment. She had considered herself learned.After all she had a degree and had a good job back in Kenya but nothing prepared her for the English accent.
''I can't get a word of what you are saying.Speak slowly please'',one customer said.
Another customer said ''Speak in English please'', when she was already speaking in English.
That did it. She realised that maybe she would have to do ''those other jobs'' she had not thought of before.
By the end of her shift she was upset, tired and disappointed and she wanted to go home.
To be continued....