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Three Wishes

"Have you done any work in the last two weeks or do you plan to do so in the next?"
John looked up at the completely expressionless,plastic looking women through the thick perspex window.
"No" he replied.
"Well as long as you don't count bringing the milk in, feeding the cat and making my breakfast this morning that is. Why have you?" He added sarcastically.
The women did not answer,nor did her face assume any sort of recognizable expression.
Instead she said,
"Sign here Mr Philips,and sign here to say that you have received this letter for your restart interview."
"Which letter?" asked John
"This one here ." She said,nodding towards the brown envelope in her hand.
Around the corner was the job centre.
John took hold of the pen on the counter, the clear plastic, cheap and old looking pen that was secured to the counter with sticky tape,string,and paper clips. All were arranged in such a complex manner that he doubted if even the designer of such a security system could steal it, never mind anybody else, and signed the first form.
"Now ..." he started with an irrated sigh.
"If you would be so kind as to hand me the letter in your hand, so that I have actually received it, then i will gladly sign the receipt form. But until such..."
John was stopped mid-sentence by a sudden and totally unexpected movement from the women. She was handing him the letter.
"Thankyou," he said, with an unusual feeling of triumph, and signed the receipt form.
Placing the letter into the inside pocket of his jacket, he turned. Behind him, a man and women stood waiting. The man nodded at John.
John had a vague recognition of the man from somewhere, though he could not think were from, and could not recall his name. Maybe he'd seen him in the local pub, or had even been to the same school as him, Anyway, he nodded back at the man so as not to appear ignorant, and left.

Knowing that he would feel worse after the visit, he still felt compelled to go in.
'There might be a realistic job on offer, with realistic wages,' he thought, or hoped would be more accurate.
He looked closely at the advertised vacancies, which didn't take long, and had, through experience, got used to what he was seeing.
The employers either wanted a slave to drive into oblivion with no time off,and
absolutely no pay. Or an alien from Pluto, with three highly developed brains, eight hands, and the ability to work non-stop 48 hour shifts brushing up rubbish for peanuts.
He was right.
He left feeling worse, much worse than he'd felt before he went in.
'Bloody 'ell,' he thought, '... another two weeks of near insanity. Surely something good will happen... Maybe even exciting... Or is that too much to wish for?'
He took a deep breath, and released a long sigh through his nostrils. Zipping up his coat, he sniffed hard, coughed, spat onto the pavement and headed home.

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Taxi Tales

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