Friday, 22 April 2016


Last year I was getting some regular post-natal doula work, I am sure you remember that I thought I had found my niche. I wasn't making a fortune but I thought I was contributing to my clients and my household and that word of mouth might start to bring me a few more clients.
Then, the year turned and just as if a door had shut, the work all dried up. For a while the phone kept ringing but the inquiries didn't amount to anything, then it all stopped, altogether.
The result of all this is that I have been frequenting the employment sites, even to the extent of joining Airtasker. I'm guessing that most cities have their own version of airtasker, where people offer small jobs at low rates, to people who are desperate for work.
I check Airtasker several times a day, on the off chance that someone will be offering a task I can do without incurring more expense than the payment offered. The site is dominated by people wanting their houses cleaned or their gardening done but sometimes there is an ad which catches my imagination:
The woman whose wedding musicians cancelled and now wants two more to play on a weeks notice. Why did they cancel? Did she find someone? The wedding is tomorrow, I wonder how it will go.

The person who wants two beanies and matching scarves made in football team colours. She wants them done before Tuesday. Will someone be able to do it in time? Why is she prepared to pay for hand made items? Can't she buy them in the shops?

Someone wants her small dog chaffeur driven to Brisbane (12 hours away). Why? and who will do it for the small amount on offer?

The various people who want ice cream delivered on Saturday nights. This is a regular occurrence and they never actually seal the deal to get the delivery.

There was even an ad for "adult shopping" posted at 4am. Does anyone seriously believe that someone will urgently deliver lube and cherries at 4am?

I wonder what next week's stories will be!


  1. I'm so sorry about the doula business being what it is.

  2. Thank you, Snow.
    Things aren't working the way I imagined but what ever does? I have learnt a lot, met some wonderful people and got out of my comfort zone. All of that is a win

  3. Interesting tasks! I am going to have to see if we have something like that here just so I can see what people are willing to pay someone else to do. I saw on a local Facebook group if I had a car that could seat 8 I could have made 100 bucks tonight by transporting folks downtown. Unfortunately I only have room for 7. Maybe I could tie one of them on the roof?

  4. Anne,
    If you just get a bigger car, you will be ready for the next time :)

  5. I am sorry to hear about the Doula business drying up. All the best for a new career.

  6. Earning money the old fashioned way--training and working in a field that doesn't require a PhD. is slowly but inevitably slipping away. Doula care had a long and worthy run, but like everything else, the trend is moving away from that more holistic way of childbirth. Better to be a very good mechanic or high pressure welder, something that no machine can replicate. Then on the other hand we see people who want lube and cherries at 4am but are only willing to pay for the cost of the cherries and consider it a favor they have offered you something they call temporary employment.

    I know I am old when I can remember decades when someone who could only sign their name could find employment, get fired on Friday and go to work for another manufacturer on Monday.

    I see the new world order, have been watching it evolve for the past 15 years and studying it and the history of it for twice that amount of time Kylie. For people like us, them who just want to go 5 of 7 days with no worries, there is scant place being set aside anywhere but the state and national lottery lines.

  7. Ramana,
    Thank you.
    Something will come up and in the meantime, I am out of my comfort zone which is probably a good thing.

  8. Mark,
    Along the same lines as mechanics and welders, I have heard it said that refrigeration mechanics will never go hungry because everyone wants beer and air conditioning.

    I believe that the only thing to change our societies will be a revolution but I think that is a very long way off, too many people are asleep, distracted by bread and circuses

  9. Commiserations on supporting women through those nine months not being a viable business.

    As to the "airtasker". Thank you for making me laugh, Kylie. It's a truly great idea. A brilliant idea, its concept right up my streak. I will turn my hand to anything. Variety welcome. And I say this as an accomplished plodder if plodding is required.

    Good luck. And thanks for your support at our very own miserable sod's (Nick) plight. He doesn't know a good thing when it's right in his comment box. One day he will. If it kills me.


  10. Ursula,
    Some people make it viable. I'm not sure what it is that I get wrong but it's been a great experience.

    I imagine you will be soon be doing early morning deliveries and making a fortune :)
    hugs back

  11. I've never heard of "Airtasker" but it sounds fascinating!

    I'm a dj and it's getting tougher to get bookings as everyone thinks they can do it themselves now. They think all they need is an ipod and speakers and that's it. What they don't realise is that the most important part of dj-ing is reading the crowd, and knowing which track to play next. Something an ipod can't do.

  12. I've never heard of airtasker, or anything like it in the UK, though maybe I'm just not in the loop. It doesn't look like you'd make very much from any of those jobs.

    Sorry to hear doulas are going out of fashion and you're not getting any work. I hope you soon find some worthwhile alternative.

    I don't know why Ursula thinks I'm a miserable sod. There are plenty of good things going on in my life, but I'm also aware of all those people whose lives aren't so privileged. Strange as it may seem, the two can co-exist.

  13. Joey,
    We were at a wedding a couple of weeks back and the first comment my son made was "this DJ is hopeless" so yea, there's more to it than having a bunch of music.

    I notice that people like to do their own graphic design and printing and so on these days and I always say "just because you can, doesnt mean you should"

  14. Nick,
    There are people who seem to make a living just from airtasker but they are probably guys with a truck and a bunch of handy man skills. I also notice that the more experienced users are very specific when they make an offer to complete a task. They specify the hours they intend to spend on the task, things like petrol, tolls, materials etc
    The inexperienced just make a bid that they will likely regret.

    The dynamic with Ursula is interesting, there are other people with less pleasant attitudes who are much better accepted. The blogging world is extremely sycophantic at times, have you noticed?

  15. The blogging world is very sycophantic, which annoys me intensely. I prefer to have an honest dialogue with people, even if they're telling me things that aren't comfortable to hear. As long as they're not gratuitously insulting. I do get impatient with people who persistently get me wrong and credit me with attitudes and views I simply don't have because they don't read what I say properly.

  16. Kylie, before I was a dj I ran by own Graphic design business for years, and yes in the end everyone decided to do their own logos etc. And your quote is spot on!

  17. Helloooo!
    Maybe the beanies and the scarf were for a baby? Crikey.... my head would burst pondering the stories behind those ads! We need to know, don't we?!

  18. Ms Scarlet,
    It's good to see you here!

    I certainly need to know about these stories :)


go on, leave a comment or four.