Monday, March 31, 2008

a note from the other side....

So I haven't posted for a while because I have been so insanely busy with a GINORMOUS piece of litigation which is slowly sucking the life out of me as well as most of the other lawyers in the team.

It's great timing, coming up to review season, to be billing 11 hours a day but how sustainable is it long term? 'Not very' would be my answer.

And I have so much to fill you in on: the move of the retreat from Melbourne to Lorne (well that's not actually very interesting they just lied to us and changed it without telling anyone); Ben's official demotion back to Senior Associate (the office wide email was issued last week); my insomnia (which is RIGHT out of control and making me do strange things); the few but very promising dates I have had with a state public servant called Adam; and the fact I have developed an obsession with baking my own bread.

I will try to come back and post again soon but it's not looking good. Hope you're all well! xx

Sunday, March 9, 2008

a weekend at lawne

OK, I know it's spelt Lorne, not Lawne but crikey, we did a good job trying to put the 'law' in Lorne this weekend, 'at home, together, at work'. When I say weekend, I really mean Thursday to Sunday morning. Question number one about staff retreats: why is the timing so weird? Surely they want us to bill so why not take us down Friday night and put us up somewhere really swanky and give us massages and pedicures to ease the pain of having to sacrifice our weekend?

Question number two is how is it possible to politely listen to three of the four partners in my team serenade the team with some 'golden oldies'... yet again? The first couple of times I watched the partners down a couple of bottles of what Rumpole so politely called 'Chateau Thames Embankment' and then break into song (without even a karaoke backing track) I thought it was endearing, in the same way you think your grandad spilling his coffee out of side of his mouth is endearing (but still requires intervention). After the third or fourth time, I wanted to scream 'you are NOT Tom Cruise and you're right, I have definitely lost that loving feeling'! This time I did manage to quietly move and pretend I was part of a more sober and better behaved team and I think some people did actually believe I was the new girl in the 'real estate' team for a while.

Surprisingly, it was Ben who made much of this retreat bearable. He has decided to throw caution to the wind and admit that now Uncle is back it is unlikely he will continue to hang on to partnership for much longer. So, like all good men, he has stopped trying. This meant that when the Meyer Briggs personality testing started he didn't want to indulge it and threw out some brilliant one-liners about people's level of extroversion or feeling-ness. Laughs all round.

And more importantly, the self declared defeat means my terrible attempt at scheming can remain just that and all I need to do is offer to help Ben by sharing some work with him so when he does inevitably build up his cleint base again, I can take the credit for it.

Sunday, March 2, 2008


The BCF staff retreat is this coming weekend.

Usually this means a weekend somewhere like Apollo Bay or Lorne and everyone drinks too much and then, hungover the next day, is forced to participate in 'trust' exercises. Of the you-fall-over-and-we-all-catch-you variety.

This year they've decided to do something a bit different and have booked out one of the hotels so we can all have a weekend in Melbourne 'at home, together, at work'. That's seriously the tag line for the retreat.

So we have been forced to sacrifice the ocean paddles for a tour of Melbourne's "secret laneways". I reckon if they're still secret from me now I don't really want to know about them.

And really, I don't want to be stuck down some pokey alley way, half cut, with a partner (or even worse Ben) breathing down my neck as we wait for the next teeny tiny bar to have enough room for more than two of us to sit and have a drink together. Not a great idea when over 100 lawyers work in the same place.

I am trying to work out how to get out of a night in substandard hotel accommodation when I have perfectly lovely 250 thread count sheets and all my creature comforts 'at home, alone, away from work'.