Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Found an apartment

The past few days have been spent apartment hunting in smallish town in the middle of nowhere.  After several Google Maps sessions, I have definitely determined that my new town is at least 1.5 hours from everywhere.  And by everywhere, I mean all the places where I have friends, or that have really cool stuff going on.  Unfortunately, I am moving to a place that's not that exciting. 

It also has some of the weirdest rental real estate ever.  Tons of tiny houses near my work, but 90% are disgusting, and the other 10% are tiny, or have sky high heating costs or both.  So we ended up taking a place in an apartment complex on the edge of town.  The lucky part is that we looked at this place Wednesday and were shown a deluxe unit with a ton of amenities.  We couldn't afford it.  So we also looked at a 2 bedroom that was small, but had a nice kitchen and 2 bedrooms.  When we went back to look at it again as the clock was ticking on our decision, the manager decided to give us the deluxe unit for the smaller unit's price.  So we got a 1,200 square foot apartment, with 2 bathrooms and a 2 car attached garage.  For only $750 including heat.  This is about $140 less than I paid for rent during law school, but for a nicer place.

That's exciting.  Now, I just need to figure out how to lure my friends to come and visit.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Update on my "getting pushy" post

As you might remember, I emailed a potential employer (who I had interviewed with before) a couple weeks ago.  The idea was that I wanted to find out if I had a chance to work at that org, in a town that's much closer to friends and family, before I took the job in the middle of nowhere.  Well, I accepted my job on the 16th, and the other place emailed me on the 17th, telling me they wanted to interview me.  Argh!

I am happy to have a job, but a little peeved that it took this other organization 2 full weeks to get back to me.  Yes, I would prefer living in a town closer to home and friends, but that old saying about a "bird in the hand" still holds true.  So I am getting used to the idea of living in the middle of the state, and having to drive about 3 hours to visit anyone I know. 

And when it comes time for me to job hunt again, hopefully the economy won't be so bad, and I will have more flexibility when accepting offers, and won't get pushed into accepting a job before all my other options have been explored.  I also have learned that public interest employers move slowly, and to take that into account when I am looking.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Sorry for my absence

I know I haven't posted in a while, but I have been pretty busy.  Lately, I have been "Twittering Professionally" which means I post tweets about news in my field, and of things that are interesting to me as a lawyer.  So, Twitter is taking up a lot of time.  I have found a lot of professional contacts on Twitter, and really enjoy it.  As a result of me being so "into" social networking, the state bar has kind of put me in charge of managing our division's presence on Facebook and Twitter.  (Mostly because the rest of the board has no idea how this stuff works.)  This is great, as I love social networking and think that working on this project can help me make a name for myself with the general state bar leadership.

Yesterday, I went to the town in the middle of the state where I will be working.  I need to find a place to live, as I am starting work on December 1.  It was strange....lots of older, very small houses for rent "downtown" and newer apartment communities in the so-called "burbs" which are really about 5 miles from downtown.   Because we are unable to make a decision yet, we are going back Sunday and staying in a hotel through Monday to look for places again.  I love the idea of renting a house, but only if it has a kitchen big enough to cook a meal in, and doesn't smell like cat urine.  Both of these have been a problem thus far.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I got a job offer!

So, I guess my email was not necessary.  Got home today and there was a job offer in the mail.  I haven't accepted yet, so all I will say is that it is a legal services organization in a non-major city.  The position itself is absolutely ideal.  I will be providing direct services to people who are too poor to afford legal representation otherwise.  And doing a lot of consumer and landlord/tenant and public benefits law.  All areas I really like. 

I am pretty psyched!

Risky Business

So, I have finally done something that I had avoided in my job search so far - I got pushy. 


I had interviewed for a job at a public interest org in July, and didn't get the job.  And they recently posted another job for that same location.  Actually, I have interviewed 5 times for jobs at this same organization, in many different locations.  And I didn't get any of the jobs.  One rejection was b/c they hired a transfer from another office.  Another was because the subject area they wanted to hire someone for was unfamiliar to me.  I know they hired a 2006 grad from another school for one of the positions.  One interview just went badly for reasons I can't explain here, but was fallout from my previous life hiring attorneys as an office manager. 

So, I wanted to find out whether I had any chance whatsoever of employment at this org.  And I emailed to ask just that.  Very nicely and professionally, but I did.  My email went something like this:

"Dear Ms. Employer: I met with you in July regarding a position with your office.  Since then, I have been volunteering at ABC Public Interest Org and working with XYZ Org.  Recently, I saw your office posted a new staff attorney opening.  As I mentioned during our previous meeting, I am very passionate about working as a legal services attorney, and am still interested in working for your office because of my many connections to the area.  Would you be willing to reconsider me for a position in your office?  I have attached my resume to refresh your recollection of our previous meeting.  Thanks in advance for your consideration.  Sincerely, Improvilaw"

This is risky as hell, but had to happen.  If this org really has no intention of hiring me, a lack of response to my email will verify that.  However, if I was their second choice the last time I applied, I am hoping that they will contact me and say so. Doing this scares me, but it's even more frightening to send in my materials and wait a month or more to find out what's going on.

Fingers crossed.