Its official. I was laid of on the 31st of December while on vacation in Beijing. I found out via an emailed letter from an employee I’d never met in London in the HR department. No explanation was given except for the “unfavorable economic situation.” Several others in our office (7 in total…. so far) have been laid off. Two additional staff were let go today…. literally three days before the biggest holiday and family celebration in China- the New Year. I will, I swear, never work for a bank again. They do not treat people like humans, and have no rhyme or reason for their crude and inhuman behavior. Its unforgivable how they have treated people, and it is a product of the industry as a whole. Shame on you, banking community, for being such *&#*&@_$s.
On the inverse, I’ve spent the entire month painting, reading and generally enjoying Shanghai’s city-scene. Its been liberating painting again, something I’d taken a break from for over a year for lack of time. Its a shame to let one’s hobbies go by the wayside. I’ve started a massive “History of Civilizations” book that is fascinating.
We are also busy apartment hunting. We found one we really loved, but as we were just settling our final negotations the realitor called to say that someone else had swept in with more money and taken it. It was a devistating moment, as now we are back to square one on the apartment hunt. Meanwhile, of of possibly bigger importance, the job hunt is stalling as no one will hire prior to the Chinese New Year.
Last night we all stayed up late to watch Obama get sword into office. It was a good moment in American history, and I am glad that the country is willing to work to reestablish our reputation as a moral country with humble power. I hope this president will roll up his sleeves and solve a few problems. I’m holding out for the best — we’ll see!
-posted by lauren.