Finding a Job in Nova Scotia

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P1050078For almost a month I enjoyed the sunshine, the fresh water, the freedom of cottage life bliss. Then the nagging feeling started creeping up on me, the next thing I knew I was scouring job listings, revamping my resume, writing cover letters, sending emails; I was up to my elbows in frustration and I’d only been job-hunting a week and a half.

Our cross-Canada adventure plan always included finding a job in Nova Scotia to top up our travel funds and enjoying my favourite time of year at home. From the beginning I said I wanted to stay in the Annapolis Valley, I’ve got lots of my family here and I just had a feeling that there might be more opportunity than say, Yarmouth, where my parents live.

My first endeavour to find a job in a related field should have told me a lot. The town down the hill from cottage where my dad’s family grew up was looking for someone to run the after school program; the advertisement said it would be a great position for a university student or mother looking to bring her kids to work. After doing up my resume and cover letter, the lady in charge promptly thanked me for my impressive application, and days later sent a follow up email to let me know the position had been filled.

I applied to several other jobs that I felt were related to my degree and experience and sent off the email, following the application instructions. A week passed without a word, the job ads closed and I sent follow up emails to confirm that my application emails hadn’t been eaten by cyber space or something crazy like that.  Both replied, one that the job had been filled and the other saying that only successful applicants who’d be asked to have an interview would be contacted.

My annoyance level shot through the roof. I wasn’t upset that I didn’t get the job, but more disappointed with the fact that people have become so inconsiderate lazy okay perhaps too busy that they can’t even acknowledge that an application has been received and that the job has been filled. Since when did potential employers get the right to become the guy who just doesn’t bother to call? All I have to say is ruuuuuude.

I was started looking at what was available further afield too. Do I make an hours drive to a job? It would have to be well paying, because minimum wage would only pay to fill my gas tank.

After spending a week with my momma at the cottage, as she headed back home, I told her “this is the week I get myself a job”. Thom had been holding off on applying, and would look closer to where I was – the valley has a wide range of towns, and with only one vehicle between us, we didn’t want to end up having to go in opposite directions.

To add to my annoyance of professional people, the insurance company I had contacted to get myself some new insurance (since I only bought enough bloody expensive British Colombia insurance to last me to get home was about to expire) said that she’d ring me back that afternoon or the next day and then didn’t. I was left high and dry without any insurance for the weekend. Urgh stressful.

That Monday morning, Gram and I went down to Wolfville, resume in hand, to talk to the owner of one of the many local farm markets. My aunt had mentioned that they might need some extra help around the farm since it was harvest time.

I know full well that I do much better in person than I’ve ever done sending an email to anyone; I can charm the pants off anyone in a conversation. After an hour of sitting in the greenhouse, chatting about my travels and my experience and then getting the full tour of the orchards that come with an awesome view of the Bay of Fundy, I unofficially had both Thom and I a job. Solving two problems with one stop, if we worked together, we needn’t fret about organizing transportation!

I should’ve known that when it comes to finding a job in Nova Scotia, in person is always the way to go. Being open to any and all possibilities and not being fussy about what job I got was another helpful tactic.

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  • Rika | Cubicle Throwdown September 16, 2013, 3:52 am

    Glad you found something!! I was contemplating a move back to the East Coast a few years ago… I used to live in Greenwood for awhile when I was a kid. But by the looks of Craigslist and the local papers, employment is hard to come by in that neck of the woods!
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    • Kate September 20, 2013, 1:52 am

      I applied for a job as far away as Greenwood! I was considering living at my cottage, which is in Aylesford, but since I haven’t heard anything from then either yet, guess it’s a good things I didn’t hold my breath waiting! It’s definitely a challenging situation looking for work around here, and we are only based here short-term. My uncle has worked abroad (Bermuda for 10 years and New Zealand for four) and he said that even after buying a house, people were still hesitant to hire him.

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