Deja Vu? No! I remember this.

When I started writing this blog, I was looking for a job, like I do now. The difference between now and then is that I was a full-time job seeker then and now I’m a part-time job seeker while doing freelance jobs. I was a little disappointed/depressed this morning: I finished a small freelance job a day before yesterday, and today I was expecting the client to contact me for a new job offer (as he implied he would), but he did not. Then something happened that is very similar to my experience that I wrote in an old post. I had a chance to chat with a friendly cashier. He is an immigrant from Pakistan, and we shared some difficulties that immigrants face. I told how difficult it is to find a full-time job, and he said “you will get a good job”. It was like deja vu, but actually I remember it happened about a year ago as I wrote in the old post. Although he does not know me, conversation like that encourages me. After the encouraging event a year ago, I actually got a full-time job though it was a temporary contract one. Let’s assume it will happen again, hopefully a permanent one for this time.

Last time I wrote about two encouraging events. Did something else happen this time? Yes. I had a chance to meet my “old” friends in downtown Toronto yesterday. I came to Canada in 2003 as I wrote in a previous post, so my Canadian friends who I met in Calgary around that time are my “old friends”. It was only for a short time, but whatever we talk, conversation with my old friends makes me feel the world is a better place than I suppose.


Reunion with "old" Canadian friends in downtown Toronto
Reunion with “old” Canadian friends in downtown Toronto
September 30, 2013Permalink

Let things happen

As I wrote in a previous post, I wish I could predict my future, but it never happens.

Yesterday I got two job-related phone calls: one was planned and the other one was unexpected. Last week I got email from a company about a job that I applied for a few weeks ago, and we scheduled a short telephone interview. It went well (I suppose) and according to the HR, they would have telephone interviews with several other candidates and would contact those who would have an interview. What I can do now is to wait, hoping I will pass. After the telephone interview, I looked for other job opportunities, and applied for a part-time teaching job. Surprisingly, they gave me a call a couple of hours later to ask me a few simple questions. According to her, they would send email to me “soon” to arrange an interview. What I can do now is to wait, hoping they will actually arrange an interview.

Today I got reply to my job application for a freelance translation job. According to her, they would send documents to me to clarify some details. Getting freelance jobs is easier than getting a full-time job (I mean “easier”, not “easy”), and I often get reply to my application. But some of them disappear in the middle of negotiation. What I can do now is to wait, hoping they won’t disappear.

While I actively look for jobs, I often have to wait for something passively. For now, I just let things happen.

By the way, today I went to a job fair in downtown Toronto, and was so disappointed. Unlike the one I wrote about in an old post, it was actually a “recruiting agency fair”; there ware supposed to be “employment pavilion” where organizations look for new employees and “career service pavilion” where job seekers find career services, but both pavilions ware filled with a bunch of recruiting agencies and some schools who provide job training but do not guarantee employment. As I wrote in another old post, some recruiting agencies are dishonest, and I do not trust them. Last week I found an organization that looked different from typical recruiting agency. I registered online, and instantly got reply saying “one of our agents will contact you within two business days”. I was impressed, but it’s been one week and nothing has happened. How can I trust them?

Anyways, I just let things happen for now.

September 24, 2013Permalink


When I visited Toronto for the first time, I lived in my home city Yokohama which is adjacent to Tokyo (more precisely it is adjacent to a city that is adjacent to Tokyo). Tokyo and the surrounding area including Yokohama is like a gigantic version of GTA (Greater Toronto Area), and at that time, I thought Toronto was a small city. When I lived in Hamilton, I often visited Toronto and thought Toronto is a big city. When I lived in Orillia, I thought even Barrie, which is way smaller than Toronto, was a big city. The notion of “big” and “small” is always relative.

It’s been one week since I moved to Etobicoke which is western part of Toronto. As I wrote in an old post, I spent a couple of weeks at my friends’ place in downtown Toronto during Christmas vacation after having lived in Orillia for a little more than a month, and at that time, I couldn’t tell which I preferred; urban or rural. Now I can tell without hesitation that I prefer living in an urban area. My experience in a small town for ten months seems to change my perspective. Etobicoke is not as “urban” as downtown Toronto. It’s not a very exciting place, but I feel relieved to live in a lively place.

I should emphasize that “urban” does not necessarily mean “little green”. Many people, even in Japan, presume that Tokyo is “made of concrete”, but in fact, there are many green and relaxing places in Tokyo. I lived in Barcelona, which is way smaller than Tokyo, for three months in 2005. I found it is “made of stone” with little green, less greener than Tokyo, and I felt a little uncomfortable for that reason. I like to live in an urban and green city.

September 22, 2013Permalink

Good bye, Orillia

I always wish I could predict my future, which never happens.

When I was doing the previous temporary job, I thought/hoped/wished I would find a next job soon. Since I did not know where it would be, I thought it would be safer to stay in Orillia while looking for a job and then move to a new place after getting a job. It’s been two months, and now I’m doing a freelance job to do at home. If I knew this would happen, I would have moved right after ending the previous job. Tomorrow I will move to Etobicoke, hoping life will be better in some way.

To be honest, I did not enjoy living in Orillia. I should say that it is not because of the place. As you see below, It’s a lovely place. It is because of the job. I know life should not be controlled by job. But… anyways. It’s a long story.

I hope that life will be better eventually, and that someday I will visit Orillia for vacation and enjoy it.


September 13, 2013Permalink


There is a difference between telling a lie and hiding a truth, but the difference is very small.

In general, life is tough. When something sounds too good to be true, it is usually not true. After having been a full-time job seeker for nearly a couple of months, I’m now a part-time job seeker; I do a freelance job to do at home, but it is not enough to live decently, and I keep looking for a better job(s). I have registered for a few web services for freelancers to find jobs (or from a different perspective which it is primarily for, they are for clients to find freelancers), including the one where I “practice” graphic design as I wrote in a previous post. Once in a while, I get invitation from a client to suggest me applying for a job they posted, but in most cases they send invitation to many qualified freelancers and I still have to compete with other invited freelancers. Last week, I got an invitation to a CAD coaching job. I am good at CAD modeling, and as I wrote in an old post, I like teaching. I said “wow”.

The invitation was very simple, like saying “if you have expertise in CAD modeling and you like teaching, this job is for you”. Can getting a job be that easy? I replied and asked more information. Their reply said like “visit our web site where you find more information and application from”. But the “information” on their web site, which is actually a youtube video which repeatedly says “earn money!”, is not very detailed and in the “application from” you only need to enter your contact information and “a message”, unlike typical job application where you need to enter work experience, education, skills and many other pieces of information. Can getting a job be that easy? I assumed they would give me a link to another web page or something to enter more information about me, and thought how to show my capability, but what they sent me instantly was an agreement form. Can getting a job be that easy? No. I read the agreement form and found it abnormally difficult to understand. After reading it three times, what I found is… if someone downloads a trial version of their CAD software, I will provide them with technical support AS MUCH AS THEY WANT during the trial period. And if they purchase the product after the trial period expires, the company gives me a certain amount of money no matter how much time I spent on the technical support. If not, they don’t. Is this a good deal for me? No, I don’t think so. Did they tell me a lie? No, they didn’t. Are they honest? No, I don’t think so. If they are honest, they don’t have to repeatedly tell “earn money!”, and they don’t have to make their agreement from abnormally difficult to understand. Are they smart? No, I don’t think so, but I think they are, or at least they try to be, cunning.

Anyways, life is not easy. I’ll keep looking for a better job.

September 10, 2013Permalink

10 years

It’s been 10 years since I came to Canada in September 2003 when I entered the University of Calgary. I spent about 3 years in Japan after graduating from U of C, so I have lived in Canada for about 7 years in total.

One of today’s hottest Japanese news is the retirement of Hayao Miyazaki, the most famous and probably the most talented animation film director of Japan. It was announced by the president of the film studio that Hayao Miyazaki works for, Studio Ghibli, and he will officially talk about his retirement at a press conference on Sept. 6th. Now we don’t know why he decided to retire, but according to an internet article, the president told that a character in his newest animation film says “a creative period only lasts for 10 years”, and that Hayao Miyazaki said “my 10 years ended a long time ago”.

Really? I mean, does a creative period last only for 10 years? I have not watched the animation film yet, and don’t know in what context the character says that. I just want to believe that a creative period lasts way longer than 10 years; otherwise my creative period will end soon.

I like Ghibli films because both children and adults can enjoy it, and probably children and adults watch it in different ways. I liked it when I was a child simply because it was fun, but did not watch it in my 20s and early 30s because I thought watching animation films was childish. Now I like it again because it reminds me of something precious that adults tend to forget. As I wrote in the previous post, I often forget a beginner’s mind. It seems that I should rethink what is fundamental for me, so that my creative period will last longer than 10 years.

September 1, 2013Permalink