Friday, May 12, 2006

Tight arse

Working away from home has turned me into a miser. When I’m in Geneva, basically I have a maximum budget of expenses that work will pay for. This amounts to €200 per day including the plane ticket to and from Geneva. Sure, this sounds like a lot but it depends on how long my stay in Geneva is. If I’m in Geneva for the whole week, this isn’t a problem as I can spread the expenses over a week. However, if I’m in Geneva for only say, 2 days, I blast my €200-a-day budget way into the next century.

For example, for 2 days in Geneva:
€250 – 300 Return plane ticket from Paris to Geneva (that’s 1 day’s budget gone).
€100 Other transportation costs (such as actually getting to and from work once I’m in Geneva. There’s no public transportation where I go so it’s either taxis or a rental car)
€70 Accommodation
€20-30 Food (but this can vary)

And I’m well on my way to getting a nice but firm phone call from our admin lady telling me that my expenses are unacceptable. Naturally, it is out of the question that I bear some of these costs; after all, this is a work-imposed trip not a holiday.

So here I am, working extremely hard for my employers while spending half my time being absolutely obsessed at how much my being here will cost them.

Breakfast at the hotel? No thanks, that’s €8. I’ll just grab some…….water and fresh air on the way to work.
Lunch at the work canteen for €8? No thanks, I’m looking forward to my dry cheese and butter sandwich from the service station across the road for only €3.
Check in early for my flight for a small extra charge? €7.50. Hmm, I’ll just join the queue for the mad scramble for seats on the European budget airlines (let’s call them simpleJet to protect their identity. There’s a whole other long and whingy story here) that my employers use.

In short, I really should care less seeing that my employers chose to ship me here anyway, so tough if my expenses exceed their little budget.

On the bright side, I’m losing weight.

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