I ride the train for 4h, four days a week.
Why? Well, the short answer is – I got a job in Skagen (if you are not from Denmark, Skagen is two hours train ride from Aalborg where I live). The long answer is:
I made a promise with myself some time ago, to not say “ no” to an opportunity. When an opportunity present itself, even if it’s not the most attractive one, I try to say “yes”. And it always gives back to me. Here are some of the other reasons for my choice:
Unemployment struggles in Aalborg
I struggled with unemployment for about a year and It was really starting to piss me off 😀 . I was always keeping myself busy though. I had two part-time jobs (over the period, not in the same time ) freelance projects, pro bono and all sort of things, but It was not paying enough. And that where the frustration came from. I was never demotivated or lazy or anything like that. I don’t need a nine to five job to keep me motivated or to feel like an active part of society, but I was just not earning enough. So I needed a job that will cover my expenses.
Long story short, I saw a job opening for e-commerce assistant (for the summer) at digogmigskagen.dk
, loved the tasks
, applied, went on an interview and got the job!
My everyday tasks are a combination of pretty much everything that needs to be done when having an online shop. I take care of the brand image, social media, the customers, the stock, the orders and all in between. Some of my daily tasks are more challenging than other, but in general, it’s a lot of creative work and I am happy with it.
STRUGGLING WITH Danish
My biggest issue and what makes this job the most difficult and exhausting one (but also probably the best and most giving one in future perspective) is the fact that when I am at work I MUST speak only Danish, exclusively.
And I know I may have bragged on my social media for passing my Danish exams 😀 but they don’t mean absolutely anything… Those tests are super far from reality.
My Danish is rather limited in my opinion. There are people who will disagree but I know how I usually communicate and I know how I communicate in Danish :D. I say probably 25% of the things I want to say. Andreas is the best boyfriend ever and constantly is telling me how good my Danish is. Which is of course very sweet, and very encouraging but I am not self-cautious about my Danish, I just literally don’t know how to say what I want to say. I think I speak super fine given I am a foreigner and that it’s Danish we are talking about, but I lack so much in my dictionary.
So the fact that I got hired to do work exclusively in Danish given I am not fluent just blew my mind, and is the reason why I took the job even though it meant I need to spend 4h a day on a train.
I have been in Denmark 5 years and this is my 7th job and the first one where I feel accepted even though I am a foreigner. I don’t want to get all cheesy but the gratitude I have towards the people there, who make me feel like a part of a team, is immense.
When I speak Danish I have an accent, I mispronounce, very often I make words up just because I feel it might sound like that, so sometimes it could be a bit difficult to communicate with me :D. In my experience so far, Danish people will just give up when they hear I am not fluent in the language and just switch to English, or my favorite – ignore me.
Whine, whine, but it’s true. In all of my jobs/ internships so far I have always felt like an outsider to an extreme extent. I have never felt like a part of a team and it has always been killing me. Anywho, don’t want to get too carried away, I will make a “foreigner complaining” entry later, my point is, it’s the first place where I was given the chance to speak Danish the way I do, and no one is treating me different.
SO what’s bad about it?
I ride the train 4 hours 4 days a week, making it a total of 16 hours a week :X. And it’s not fun… And it’s not the train that’s bad, it’s the fact I feel like I am at work from 8 until 19 and I don’t even get to get that much done. There is almost no time for social life 4 days a week either. When I get home the first thing I want to do is take off the train feeling off of me, and by the time I am done doing that there isn’t that much time left for else 😀 . So the ride is hard on me, but for now, I see a lot of benefits of the whole situation, so I will give it what I can and try take out as much as possible of it 🙂 .
A little bit about the company itself. Digogmigskagen.dk is a fashion boutique with a focus on Danish designer brands. The store has the biggest Danish and some of the biggest international names. You can find really beautiful pieces for all sort of occasions. And when you order online, you get a handwritten thank you not from… *ME* ! 😀 Anywho, not here to advertise my new job, but really wanted to share.
Beautiful dress by mbyM from digogmigskagen.dk can be found here.