Back from the interview...
I had an amazing trip, simply amazing. I flew out of Las Vegas on Thursday at 10:50 am. I arrived in San Jose about 12: 30 pm. I was just amazed by the green mountains, so unlike the dusty brown mountains of Nevada. I rented a 2004 Grand Prix and took off.
This was my very first time in California. I was stunned when I got outside for the first time. My hands and sinuses were no longer dry, what was this I was feeling? Oh yes, I remember what this is: humidity. Ahh, I have missed you my old friend.
I drove up US 101 to scope out the place where I was to interview. I passed Sunnyvale, Mountainview, Stanford University (I felt smarter just passing the sign), Redwood City and San Mateo.
I drove out to my interview site. The site was convientantly located directly across from an IHOP. Coincidence, I think not. The library is on older one, circa 1954. Old but quite large.
I went to my hotel. The hotel has a very narrow front, maybe 50 feet across. The hotel was longer than it was wide and had a garage and three levels of room. This was a Hampton, of course. Here thought they tightly controlled costs. There was exactly one egg per person for breakfast daily, sometimes fruit, sometimes not.
That night I drove out to Berkley, took me maybe an hour. I drove across a bridge into Oakland. Got to see San Francisco at night. I finally got to meet my friend and watch this cool singer at this bar. While I was there I felt something was wrong with the bar: beer-check, babes-check, assorted barflies-check, clouds of cigarette smoke? No clouds of cigarette smoke. A bar without smoke? Ahh once again California, Woohooo!
Woke up a bit tired and a bit bored. I ate my one egg and decided to take the scenic route to my interview. So I drove up and took my time. Did some window shopping, got to see some other small towns.
The interview was interesting. Unlike Las Vegas-Clark County or the Public Library of Cincinnati & Hamilton County this was to be a multi stage affair. The first stage was meeting with three people: a librarian, tech services and a HR person. I thought I did very well. I had them laughing at one point
HR person: “Do you have any problems working with Reference Librarians?”
Me: “Reference Librarians work?!”
Then I interviewed with the assistant director of the Library. I scored a couple of points: One, he was impressed that no matter what I was moving to California. My brother interpreted this to mean that some candidates were only going to move if they got the job. Also I asked some very detailed questions about the Library’s policies toward filtering internet terminals and granting children access to DVDs and videos.
These issues have been ones that Public Libraries grapple with. The library's funding is entirely city based and thus not subject to the whims of the state budgets. The library filters there terminals. No porn watching allowed. If parents consent in writing, children may check out DVDs and videos.
The assistant director told me that I would hear something in 2 to 3 weeks. If I made the next round I would have to come back for another interview. I hoping that like all bureaucracies this will be more like 4 to 5 weeks because I broke the bank on this trip.
I was done by 3 and back to the hotel by 4 pm. While driving I heard interesting traffic reports, only in California? A major interstate was complete closed down in both directions as motorists tired to catch a loose dog. Traffic on a bridge in San Fran was coming to a crawl as rubber neckers stared a man on 7 foot tall unicycle going across the bridge.
Pretty bored I journeyed out to Half Moon Bay. Frustrated and broke and I needed to see something larger than myself. Half Moon Bay is maybe an hour from Redwood City. Very scenic with small shops (no Walmart) and the beach was incredibly.
Saturday I meant to get up very early but I got out by 8. WARNING: If traveling south on I-101 the sign for the 85 south is not clearly marked. THERE IS NO on ramp to 85 south from I-101 North. So after a bit of cursing I finally was on my way to Santa Cruz to maybe see my new home.
I was not disappointed. Santa Cruz is larger that Half Moon Bay. The beach is gorgeous.
I went to see my new place and was waiting outside when a Santa Cruzian passed me:
Trying to act like a native I replied in kind, “ Duude.”
My God, I had truly reached the promised land.
I met my landlord, the godfather of my future roommate, he is an awesome guy. He took me to lunch and I had the freshest salmon I have ever had in my life. I got the concise history of California in 30 minutes or less and I got to see the inside of my new place. Very, very nice.
After that I headed back to San Jose airport and headed back to Vegas. Just about broke my heart to do it though. So tired of temping. Just 5 weeks to go.
So that is the tale of my trip.