"Under Pressure" - Queen and David Bowie, 1981
My first career was as an oil trader. It's been responsible for financial security in the future (well, we hope anyway...), a lot of wonderful friends all around the world, and -- although indirectly -- for my meeting and marrying John. My final day as an oil trader was on the 28th of June 2002. Now I teach other people about oil trading, hedging, how a refinery works, etc., etc.
I have both great memories and terrible memories of my trading days. Students often ask me if I miss it. I honestly can say that I don't as much as I thought I would. I miss being so incredibly connected to what's going on the world; John will tell you that I'm still a news junkie. I miss constant communications with trader friends. I miss the excitement of my former job, but only those times when I analyzed situations correctly and made money for the company as a result. Those times that I goofed up -- or just got unlucky -- are very forgettable. Some are more than forgettable. Some are the source of today's nightmares and stress-dreams.
All of this has been prompted by something I bumped into on the BBC's website yesterday afternoon. Of course coverage of the rapidly-rising price of oil is all over the news right now. So in reading an article here at work, I bumped into a BBC piece from last month called "What is it like being an oil trader?". It's not a bad article, really. It's a pretty good description of what I used to do with my days...apart from the fact that I tended to use phone calls much more than IMs to communicate with other traders.
So if oil trading was career number one and teaching about oil and oil trading is career number two, I'm wondering what I'm planning to do with myself next...when I've finally grown up.
Wishing all my UK and UK readers a great 3-day weekend...