Week 7. Letters written: 45. Replies: 5. Interviews: 1.

My short and to the point CV is obviously not a winner. I got the inevitable don't-call-us-we'll-call-you letters. Nothing at all in the local paper this week apart from fruit picking. I tried that once when I was about 15 and still haven't forgotten how boring it was. I was not meant to be a man outstanding in his field.

Had a very pleasant letter from a woman in London who has been following my exploits in the column and thought she might might have a job opening. She's from a courier company but luckily she doesn't want me to ride a motor bike, although as I dice with death riding my mountain bike around the city I've probably nothing to fear. Certainly worth a phone call.

The next big challenge if the job hunting fails is to remove myself from the unemployment statistics by becoming self-employed. What to be, though - that is the question. I heard a job consultant say the other day that we were returning to the days of the medieval hiring fairs. I can imagine looking for a builder or a shepherd like that but I can't imagine people driving around the streets at 7am on the look-out for a factory manager for the day.

Meanwhile, shopping: I understand that the supermarket technique of moving everything around is designed to get us to buy things we would not normally have in the house, like disposable nappies when you don't have a baby. As far as I'm concerned, the whole point of using the same store is that I know where everything is. This week they moved the vinegars. I asked the girl on the checkout where they might be hidden. She said she hadn't a clue and made it clear that as far as she was concerned the subject was closed. I mused on what I might do with the "Can I Help You?" badge that she was wearing.

Just as I was getting used to my life of indolence - I've certainly picked the right summer - I get a phone call from an ex-colleague who's in big trouble with a customer and needs someone to come in and sort it out for a month. A month's work isn't exactly a serious career move but if they're talking real money, I'm interested. I might have to retitle the column "Diary of a not-quite-so-desperate job seeker".


The author lives in Hereford. He worked as a factory production manager before being made redundant. His diary appears on Thursdays.