When I first moved to London I wanted to find an office job above all else. I wanted to have the life everyone has, waking up early in the morning, finishing at six and having my weekends free.
Well, it didn’t really work out like that. The first job I found, after lots of interviews, was in a pub, and not just any pub, one of the busiest pubs around Kings Road, in the posh area of Chelsea.
It turns out that it was the best thing I could have chosen. After quitting the pub, I spent a year in an office, then I decided to go back in to hospitality and manage a pub. Working in a pub means you have to be ready to see things you have never seen before: funeral parties where everyone gets drunk, people telling you stories about their lives (even the ones that you don’t want to know), people complaining about their drinks and food, people constantly asking things, and people being so drunk that they have to be banned from the pub.
It means working nights and weekends, dealing with people 24/7. It means standing up for a lot of hours. And it means walking around with a smile on your face no matter what has happened to you, because people want to have fun in a pub.
It is a very hard life, I have to admit it. Sometimes I wonder why I left my 9-6 job and my super comfortable chair in the office, to get involved in organizing events and managing a pub.
But on the other hand, it’s nice to work different hours, to have a whole morning to yourself and start working at six in the evening. It’s nice not to have every day planned, and it is good sometimes to work during weekends. You save money, importantly, and you don’t feel lonely, which is something expats frequently have to deal with.
Plus, working in such an English establishment as the pub makes you become part of the culture and improves your English a lot. You get to know so many people, you never feel alone, and the people that you work with become your family.
So if you are thinking about moving to the UK, why not try to work in a pub for a while? It’s an experience that will be with you for the rest of your life.