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When do you have your holidays?

People ask me. Hmm, that’s a tricky question. I’m kind of having my holidays right now, because it’s summer in Finland you know, but at the same time I’m getting more work than during the rest of the year. The reason for this is that when big companies’ personnel retreats to their yearly 2 to 6 weeks of paid vacation, their workload tends to trickle down to us small entrepreneurs and freelancers. And so be it – as long as it’s doable by telecommuting!

As far as I can remember since the end of 1990s, I’ve always carried my laptop to the summer home. Even if I have a lot to do during my stay there, it still feels like holiday being in this totally different context where time seems to go more slowly and the simple things in life seem to have a clearer meaning. Work of some volume and consistency, such as literary translation, is a pleasure outside the city. It creates a vivid enough connection to the information society in a place where otherwise I’d be muffled by the waves splashing to the rocks on the shore, the leaves rustling up in the tree tops, and birds skreaking their lungs out in chase of fresh seafood. Not to mention the neighbours blasting their power boats to show off.

The phone company has finally managed to pull the optical fibre cable through the wall into the house. I am excitedly waiting for any information about The Box, but the local provider is not exactly a proactive communicator to their customers. Since signing a contract with them 1.5 years ago, I’ve received just one e-mail from them that said nothing about the project and no information whatsoever about the schedule of installations. It’ll happen when the time is right, I guess. I just have to believe in it. This is countryside.

Remote work, telecommuting, online professional existence, whatever you call it is a sign of our times and I’m all for it. It suits my professional and business agenda perfectly. Yet, we must be very clear in our heads to use the opportunity to our advantage, not to increase the stress and pressure initially pushed on us by the quarterly capitalist economy. Good work requires good thinking, which requires time and space in the right context. A cape context, if you ask me.


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