Shortly, I got new employer, not in orienteering any longer. If you want to know more, here is a bit longer version.
Few years ago I wrote about problems with long term visa to Schengen countries.
In June 2017 Ukrainians got a right to travel to Schengen without need of visa. This made life partly easier, but not significantly. Still the rule is "90 days within 180 days period". So, max half of year "there", then half of year at home.
At late 2016 I said second time to the club (Ravinen) that need some stable background to stay in Sweden and they decided to hire me. We applied for work permit in february of 2017 and I got positive decision in november (yeah, 9 months of waiting in a queue). So, since then I was allowed to stay in Sweden full time. But I was also required to work as well, 60% of full time. All work and duties in Ravinen are very well organized on voluntary basis, so there is no need for hired personal. But, as long as the club was my employer and needed to pay salary to me, it was needed some work for me. The club hired me out as consult in orienteering to some other places. Money from those places were send to the club and club paid salary to me. Rules from migration agency of Sweden about salary for those with work permit are quite strict. I must have salary every months not less than minimal allowed amount (about 1350 euro before tax). (It's not allowed to have 1000 euro one month and 1700 euro next months, even if in total you earn 1350 euro. You have to earn minimal income every month, not less. Otherwise you might get problems next time you apply for prolong of work permit). But I had work contract for 1440 euro per month (or 1180 euro per month after tax I got on my bank account).
So, I was working for Ravinen almost 3 years. Well, from inside I probably can say it was all the time a challenge to find a work and enough income for my salary, but I have to admit that the club made and I got all salaries payed in time and in proper amount.
"Corona" year made it more difficult to my income. In late november 2020 one of the club members did ask am I can be interested in job. First we though to hire me out, as always, but this didn't worked out with this new employer, but they were able to hire me. We did send all the papers about changing of employer in december and got positive decision before Christmas. So, now I have new employer — Mabtech. The company make medical plates for some tests on animals and humans.
At the moment I'm probably laboratory assistant. It might sounds as something if not interesting but at least a bit respectful, at least partly, but this just sounds so. In reality most of the time I do packing of those medical plates, prepare them for shipment.
The work is quite easy, I would say, and quite stupid. My load is 75% of full time (and income is 1650 euro per month before tax or around 1150 euro after tax), so this is enough for requirements from migration agency. My salary is almost the same as it was before, so I won nothing. We will see how competition season looks this year, but it seems quality of my trainings decrease. The work day is partly flexible, but we (me and one other guy who is like my chef) start at around 7.15. 8 hours of work + 30 min for lunch. I'm free at around 16.00. It's a bit hard with first training, I need to get up at 5 o'clock then, but possible to have relevantly enough time for second training.
So, this year I will probably work there. At the end of 2021 I probably will be allowed to apply for permanent stay permit. If I get it I might consider to quit this work or work less or whatever.
With this change, as I said, I won nothing. Good (as for worker) is that I have stable work and income. Bad (as for athlete) is that now trainings got more complicated to execute.
But sin to complain. Now I'm in Sweden full time and can train as much as I want. Almost. Isn't that what I wanted?
No one gives a shit, but.
What is quite ridiculous is that me, as an elite athlete of world class, can't earn enough money for life from income in what I'm good in.
But no one said it will be fair. Adult life.
In most cases, washing toilets in McDonald's will give you more money than "professional" career in orienteering.
Sad to say, but that's how it is, that's how it works at the moment. I have to face the true.
"Life is life,
La la la la la."
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