Departing Parties and Black Friday

Next Wednesday sees the second (and largest) group of people leaving the company through redundancy – nearly 40 of them in total.

There haven’t been too many changes in the office these past few months, just some rearrangement of desks and equipment but this mass exodus will make a big difference to the atmosphere, certainly to noise levels.

All those leaving have got invitations to the Christmas party/Leaving bash – it’s predicted that it’s going to be a rather messy affair – well, messier than usual!

What about me?

I have had my final consultation meeting and my official day of leaving confirmed as 31st December 2016.

My severance package, as mentioned before, is close to a year’s salary, plus I will get paid 3 months in lieu of notice.

Also, through my ex-boss’ efforts, the package will include an annual bonus which the company was not obligated to pay as it’s not in my employment contract, so that’s an unexpected and welcome windfall.

Job Seeking

So how has my job hunting gone so far?

Err…it’s not even out of the starting blocks.

My CV is complete and ready to go, my LinkedIn profile all up to date but my head and heart are not committed to the cause.

I don’t see any point in applying for jobs and going for interviews in a half-arsed manner – when I do it, I’d like to give it 100% and right now, I just don’t have the energy or desire.

All I’m thinking about is making the most of my last days working with my friends and colleagues (funnily enough, we’ve started going to the pub every Friday lunchtime!) and then spending some quality time with my family over Christmas in Hong Kong.

Since I no longer need to rush back for work, I’ll be extending my holiday beyond the new year for a few weeks (just need to rearrange my return flight) – I think after 21 years working for the same company, I’m due a decent break!

Black Friday

Unless you’ve been living under a rock on some far off asteroid, you’ll probably be aware that it’s Black Friday today.


I don’t think I’ve ever really been excited about it, even when the concept was first introduced in the UK. I’ve mentioned in the past that shopping has never really been something I enjoy doing – during my ‘spendy days’, it was more something that I did out of habit and fortunately, I got out of the habit.

Anyway, contra to the norm, I did make a purchase today, one which amounted to several hundred pounds – I bought a new mobile phone handset. I had been planning to replace my current phone when my contract ended in December as (being a Blackberry) it will no longer be supported by certain apps next year, apps which I regularly use.

Yes, I could have gotten a cheaper phone but what the hell, I used matched betting winnings to buy it (took a leaf out of Jim’s book, as he bought a handset with his MB winnings) so I’m not out of pocket. I certainly wouldn’t have bought it using my own money!

I’ve also switched from contract to SIM only, pitched BT Mobile against EE to negotiate a great deal (even though they are now technically the same company) so my monthly phone costs have dropped from £15 a month to £9 a month and I get a far superior data plan to boot.

I hope to do much of my gift shopping soon but I will avoid the shops this weekend, opting instead to go on Monday during my day off as I think it’ll be a little quieter.

For those who love Black Friday, I hope you bag some bargains. For those who don’t, hope you enjoy this “normal” Friday and have a great weekend!

19 thoughts on “Departing Parties and Black Friday

  1. Weenie, I will confess that when I read your official day of leaving, I felt a twinge of anxiety. Clearly I am still hard-coded to accept that jobs with wages are the only way to go, which my head knows is not true! I think having time on your side thanks to the redundancy payout will make your job search a lot easier. I understand you not wanting to look yet – it is time for a break, and I don’t know about the UK, but the Australian job market really dries up over the Christmas/New Year period anyway.

    This period is the end of an era, so take the time to enjoy and process it as you need.

    • Hey Mrs ETT
      Thanks for the kind wishes.I have to admit that I am feeling a little anxiety due to the uncertainty of things but overwhelmingly, I feel sadness that I’ll be saying goodbye to friends and colleagues and dare I say it, I feel a little excited that I have absolutely no idea what I’ll be doing next year and how that will impact my quest to FIRE. We’ll see!

  2. I like your style, extending the holiday, good for you. Here’s to it being a great investment in getting you ready for the next phase of your life – good luck with the search next year!

    • Thanks ermine. It’s been a while since my trips to HK have been relaxing as I’ve always had to pack in a lot into a short period of time – I’ll be able to take things a bit easier. Just a shame that the exchange rate is so bad right now!

  3. Hi Weenie,

    Good work on using the MB winnings to get a new phone – a great approach!

    A bit of a crap date to put the last working day in the office on, but you are spot on, dont go into the interviews if you aren’t going to give it 100%. Taking a long break is also well worth it – something I always do when I have switched jobs in the past, its a lovely way to get a nice break and completely recharge the batteries!

    I avoided all the Black Friday stuff – I can’t think of anything I actually need!

    Enjoy the time off and make the most of it 🙂
    FiL… (aka… you know who! :))

    • London Rob….is that you? 🙂

      My last day at work is actually 21st Dec as all the days before 31st have been booked up as holiday. A number of my colleagues have got jobs sorted out already but even that hasn’t motivated me into going for interviews – recharging my batteries is priority!

      Aside from the phone, I didn’t buy anything else – I didn’t even look, although my email inbox was just FULL of Black Friday spam!

      Anyway, I’ve just located your new blog – just going to wander over for a little read! 🙂

      • You got me Weenie! 🙂

        Ah fantastic so you will get a really good chance to recharge your batteries – I can’t recommend it enough, especially if you have never taken more than 2 or so weeks off at a time before.
        It also reminds you why its worth saving and trying to hit FI! 🙂

        Well that gives confidence that there are some jobs out there ,the question is are they jobs you would want – nothing worse than taking the first job that comes along (maybe they had to?) which isnt going to be what you want it to be…

        Well done on resisting any other purchases, and I know exactly what you mean about the Black Friday spam – its the way that they have extended it to be almost a week long that I am actually quite impressed by (in a “How the hell are they pulling this sh!t off…” type way) – it must be worth it for them!

  4. Hey Weenie,

    Totally agreed that after 21 years you’ve earned a big of a break. Glad you have your date and PILON and the bonus. Hope you have a great time with the Christmas parties and Friday lunchtime pub trips.

  5. Good luck with your holidays. I’m glad you managed to secure your bonus. Hope you enjoy yourself and return with new energy. Applying for a new job may be blessing after you come back. Many people seem to be getting much better deal changing employer than staying loyal for ever.

    Anyhow fingers crossed and can’t wait to read about your time with family.

  6. Very cool that you’re scheduling in a break. Exactly what you need and I’d do the same in your situation.

    Ah every Friday down the pub. That brings back fond memories of the first few years of working for my company. Sometimes we wouldn’t even go back to the office 🙂

    The only black Friday deals I partook in were bookie offers. Sunbets had a great one on the Liverpool game hope you caught it if not already signed up!

    Hope you enjoy the rest of your time at work and extended holiday


    • Cheers TFS – I’ve now rearranged my return flight so yeah, pretty much a month away – really looking forward to it!

      Trouble with Fridays down the pub…gets a bit expensive for us frugal-types haha!

      I didn’t do the Sunbets deal – I try not to do any MB on Liverpool as it’s one match where I actually care about the result! 😉

  7. I completely agree with you taking a break from things. I did exactly the same when I started my own business, I didn’t see the point working a month on my business half heartedly I would rather recharge my batteries and have the right attitude when I did start working.

    Fingers crossed this break works and you come back refreshed!

  8. It sounds as if your leaving package is about as good as they get, giving you plenty of time to take a break and work out what’s best for you next. It’s exciting, even if scary and sad too! Enjoy your extended holiday, and the new opportunities waiting for you next year!

    • Thanks Sarah – yes, all those emotions are there! I’m not counting the days but time is just whizzing by. 2017 will certainly be different anyway!

  9. Hi Weenie, I’m still using my MB funded iphone and don’t regret it for a minute, especially when I switched to a Giff Gaff contract from a rubbish Virgin one! One piece of advice I remember reading when I decided to look for a job that I found to be very true was “If you really want to find a job, you really have to look for one!” You kind of have to make finding a job your temporary job. Or that’s what I found anyway. Much as I felt surfing Linkedin for half an hour a day should cut it, it didn’t. Enjoy your time off too though, I certainly did.

    • Cheers Jim. It was your post about the efforts you had to put into job hunting that helped make me realise that I needed to do it properly (with 100% effort) or really not at all. So, thanks for the tips! 🙂

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