It’s the beginning of March, and job hunting is around the corner.
I’ve been attending explanatory meetings by various companies, as well as career counseling and seminars. It’s almost time for the employment tests.
I attended an interview strategies seminar hosted by the school today.
I’m depressed because the information was mostly negative.
I’m heading to the clubroom with the karate club members who attended the same seminar together.
「Sigh… I knew it was gonna happen, but it’s an employment crunch again this year.」
「Yeah…. The ice age of employment is getting worse.」
We let out a huge sigh while Kinoshita-san is pouting tea for us.
She also left us some snacks, which we’re eating. The sugar is coursing through my body.
「Well, leaving the SPY aside, how about asking Arioka-senpai about advice on tackling job interviews? It looks like he’s getting a job at a pretty good place.」
Arioka-senpai is getting employed by a sales corporation, even though he barely made the grade for graduation.
Somehow he’s good at getting along in life.
「It’s SPI. And are you really okay with not trying to find a job?」
[1. TL Note: SPI refers to Synthetic Personality Inventory, which is a job aptitude test in Japan.] 「My future is already decided! I don’t need to do any job hunting!」
「Huh? Are you going to be working for some rich guy?」
「Just between you and me, but I’ve decided to study abroad long ago. In fact, my grades haven’t really gone up since my first year.」
No wonder he’s not trying to look for a job.
With those grades of his, he’ll probably need 2 more years to graduate.
I’m worried about my future.
I’m not even sure what I want to do, so I haven’t decided on what kind of job I want either.
I’m a little worried about that, and I don’t even know what kind of job would suit me.
I guess I’ll check out companies I’m interested in and apply there.
I put down my tea and see a magazine that’s out of place on the corner of the desk.
「I’ve been into the new shopping mall next to the school.」
Looks like the magazine belongs to Kinoshita-san.
I ask her for permission to read it.
「Please go ahead. I’ve already finished reading it.」
There’s a list of stores in the shopping mall. That’s kind of interesting.
I thank her and borrow it.
Leaving the school, I head straight to Mizuhara’s place.
I’m actively trying to relieve the feeling of depression from the job seminar by making pastries.
I decide to make Okinawan donuts.
I make some dough about the size of a ping-pong ball, and fry it with oil at 160ºC.
I try using brown sugar because it gives it a more traditional Okinawan taste. I try it and feel someone glaring at me.
「Could you stop waiting like you’re getting rations?」
Mizuhara likes eating things freshly made, so he’s waiting with a plate in hand.
I use chopsticks to carefully put the donuts that are golden brown onto the plate.
He’s been eating them as soon as he gets them.
「Go eat at the table.」
After making some Okinawan donuts mixed with soybean flour, I move to the living room.
I’m avoiding reality by eating the donuts with some cafe au lait.
Without looking at the documents from job hunting, I read the magazine I borrowed from Kinoshita-san.
The sweets buffet in the shopping mall caught my eye.
Limited to 90 minutes, for 2500 yen.
They have a wide range of sweets, and the side menu looks good too.
But the job hunting was more costly than I thought.
I can’t get a part time job during this time either, so I was going to save some money.
I think I should give up for now. Mizuhara has been watching me at the side.
「Do you wanna go?」
「Hmm, I’m not sure.」
90 minutes for 2500 yen.
It’s more expensive than the one I usually go to, but it’s not too pricey.
I continue staring at the magazine while humming.
「Are you free this Saturday?」
「The day after? That’s March 9. I’m free.」
I checked my schedule pad.
It’s blank for that day.
「Do you wanna go then? It’s my treat.」
「Huh? Why so sudden? …Are you trying to repay me for White Day? Wait, never mind.」
The day after Valentines, I came here and saw a mountain of chocolate boxes. I involuntarily cried, 「Wow! Blood sugar!」
They looked like high quality chocolates so I opened them to take a look. They were all half eaten. He told me I could have them if I wanted, so I gratefully took them home.
That was sort of a payback for Valentines Day.
「It was your birthday, right?」
I turned 21 on March 4.
Did I ever tell him my birthdate?
「You told me last time. I said that you share the same birthday as Ōshio Heihachirō. You even asked me who he was.」
Who was he again?
I don’t remember at all.
「I’m also interested in the sweets buffet anyway.」
While checking the information about the store, he asks me if 2 pm works fine.
It’s brand new, but there’s already a lot of talk about it, and the expensive cakes are something to look out for.
I don’t feel depressed anymore.
「So does that work?」
「2 pm is fine. I can eat a lot if I skip lunch too.」
We only have 90 minutes.
I have to go there with an empty stomach.
「Are you an idiot? You should also skip dinner the night before.」
「You’re the idiot.」
I’m going to eat all I can in 90 minutes.
I’ll still have some breakfast so I have enough energy.
When I got there at 2 pm, Mizuhara was already waiting.
It’s a weekend, so there’s a 20-minute wait.
It was written on blog posts and reviews too, so we expected this. We discuss what cake to eat while looking at the store’s pamphlet.
The only thing we’re excluding is freshly baked tarts.
「Oh hello, Noda-san.」
I look up to see who called me. It’s Kinoshita-san wearing cute clothes as usual.