Working life

30 years on

Once upon a time, this blog wasn’t all transport content; it also marked personal milestones. This is one of those posts.

26th January wasn’t always Australia Day. In Victoria, prior to the Public Holidays Act of 1993, the public holiday was always on the Monday on or after the 26th.

In 1993, as people on Twitter were able to tell me, the Australia Day holiday fell on Monday 1st February.

This is a nice reminder that the “tradition” of Australia Day being observed on 26th January goes back only to 1994.

But that’s not why I’m writing about this.

It’s because while digging through some old documents, I found a letter dated 26th January 1993.

The letter was to offer me my first fulltime job, starting immediately. So today for me marks 30 years in the workforce.

The job was as a programmer, a three month contract “with the view to permanency” at a big corporate.

The pay was a pittance (I think the agency was making more out of it than me), but I worked there for almost two years. A few months later I managed to get my uni buddy Brian a job there too.

Looking back, I went into the job knowing not very much, and learnt a lot while I was there. It also amazes me the stuff we managed to do given how relatively primitive the technology was back then – mostly early versions of Visual Basic and Oracle, running on Windows 3.1 on 486 PCs.

I also met people who’ve got me subsequent jobs (including the job I moved to in late 1994), and others I’ve been in touch with ever since.

So, happy anniversary me!

By Daniel Bowen

Transport blogger / campaigner and spokesperson for the Public Transport Users Association / professional geek.
Bunurong land, Melbourne, Australia.
Opinions on this blog are all mine.

2 replies on “30 years on”

In NSW, 26 January, Foundation Day, as it was originally called, was celebrated informally from 1808 and formally from 1818. As other colonies were formed, they generally celebrated their own foundations until 1888 when they all settled on 26 January, which was typically called Foundation Day or Anniversary Day. 26 January was formalised nationally as Australia Day in 1935. What happened in 1994 was to do with agreeing on consistent holiday dates, not a decision on whether 26 January was Australia Day, which had already happened long ago.

Congratulations on 30 years in the FT workforce! You, by luck, choice, or hard work, choose an occupation in high demand which (generally) pays reasonably well and offers continual employment (not necessarily with the same employer).
BTW, in a job in 1984, I programmed in FORTRAN. I think this predates visual basic!

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