I started my placement last week.
It started with a two hour induction focusing mainly on health and safety; How To Pick Up Boxes, How To Not Get Run Over By A Fork Lift Truck, that sort of thing. There are apparently a million and one ways to get horribly disfigured/lightly killed in this place, and as such I have been issued with a dizzying array of personal protective equipment; shatterproof safety glasses, tasteful blue helmet, snazzy high-viz waistcoat, ear plugs that look like delicious sweets, and metatarsal protecting footwear that feels like a lump of steel wrapped in leather, with a little hole for each foot. Neat. Attending the same induction were five other new starters; two of whom were also called Ben. Hardly confusing at all, actually. Once we were done with that, we got taken to our relevant departments; in my case Plant Engineering, where I met the outgoing placement student, who is also called Ben. At this point I began to wonder whether there was maybe some kind of bizarre recruitment policy at play...
Anyway, I've been doing this placement malarkey for a week and a half now. It's okay I guess, I just wish I had more to do. Also, the travel kind of sucks; I'm driving over 160 miles each day, having to get up early and get home late; and every two days I have to put another £50 of petrol in my car.
On the subject of my car... (collective gasp at effortlessly seamless transition) ...I got a new one. And yes, it is a bit of a tosser's car; but this particular tosser is jolly pleased with it.
Anyone who knows cars, knows what it is; and anyone who doesn't, won't care. So I will not go into tedious detail about it (there's a time and place for such geekery).
It goes a little way towards making the daily commute to and from Exeter that little bit more bearable; unlike that ghastly VW I've been trundling about in since the end of May, which offends me with its ruthless German efficiency every time I drive it.
Even so, I'm pretty sure that I need to be moving to Exeter sooner rather than later. The initial plan is to find somewhere cheap to stay Monday to Friday, coming back to Bristol for the weekends; my tenancy agreement here doesn't run out until the end of November, and I know of no-one who would want to take my place in the meantime. Plus, I still work Saturdays at The Big Gay Department Store (the wages almost pay for half my petrol from the rest of the week...).
Might still move before then, though. The vivacious Charlie Cat finishes her summer job at the end of October, and has said that she would be more than happy to run away to Devon with me...