Working on holidays
Thread poster: Francisco Vare

Francisco Vare
Poland
Local time: 01:35
Polish to Spanish
+ ...
Dec 14, 2015

Hello, fellow translators!

I hope I am posting this in the right forum.

I have a little problem and I do not know what to do.

I planned my holidays 2 months ago. I will be flying to Spain and will not have any possible access to the Internets for 3 weeks.

A couple of days ago I (almost) got a project from a friend. It would imply translating some 75 pages, easy text, but they do not want to wait until I am back. I have 2 options, either I translate during my holidays, like in the good ol' time, dictionary in hand and just trying to pray to God that I will not have any problem during the translation, or I can reject the project.

There is no possibility of waiting, either I do it or lose it. I do not really want to work during my holidays, but it is a big project and the money would come in handy too...

So I find myself lost, I do not know what to do. I am still waiting for them to tell me definitely if they want me as a translator or not. In the meantime, time goes by and my holidays are closer and closer, meaning less and less time to at least prepare a couple of vocabulary lists...

Would you accept this project and spend your holidays working, even though you know you not only cannot surcharge them, but also feel obligated to make a "friend discount"? Or would you just enjoy your time with your family, whom you see once a year?

I think the answer is very easy, and I am almost sure I will not do it, but I want more opinions.

Thanks a lot for your help!

Franko


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James Heppe-Smith  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 01:35
Member (2010)
German to English

Moderator of this forum
Mobile phone internet access? Dec 14, 2015

Could you invest a few euros in a pay as you go card for a local mobile phone company?

You should be able to access the internet via that and be able to work over the holiday period. Alternatively, is there anywhere with free WiFi in the area you are visiting?

Finally, you could always ask a neighbour with access to allow you to "borrow" his connection.

Just a few ideas, alternatively, just say "no"!

I do not offer "mate's rates" to anyone, but do from time to time lower my rate if I am particularly interested in the project, have spare capacity, and it is for a worthwhile cause.

Have a good vacation!

James

[Edited at 2015-12-14 12:06 GMT]


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Francisco Vare
Poland
Local time: 01:35
Polish to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks! Dec 14, 2015

Thanks for your tips!

However, the possibilities of having internet one way or another are zero. No telephone, no friends, no neighbours. Just me, my family and a little house lost in the woods 75 kilometers from civilization...


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Jitka Komarkova (Mgr.)  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 01:35
Member (2013)
English to Czech
+ ...
Take what you deserve... Dec 14, 2015

Hi Francisco,
I think almost everybody here has been in your shoes... Tempted by taking on another job and earning some extra. But, honestly, ask yourself a few questions:
- whether you deserve your holidays,
- whether you have worked hard ever since 2015 started,
- whether it is true that there will NOT be another opportunity for similar hols in Q1 2016...
- whether you decision to work during hols may influence others who are going to spend the hols with you...

If you answer "yes" to any of the above questions, you should probably enjoy your holidays...
I think it is as simple as that!

Good luck in your decision-making!
Br, Jitka

[Edited at 2015-12-14 12:23 GMT]


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Dan Lucas  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:35
Member (2014)
Japanese to English
One or the other Dec 14, 2015

Cancel the holiday and do the job or take the holiday and forget the job, but don't mix the two. You'd have a miserable holiday.

My advice: take a break and come back refreshed. There's always another job for a good freelancer.

Dan


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Francisco Vare
Poland
Local time: 01:35
Polish to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
It's decided Dec 14, 2015

Thank you Jitka and Dan for your answers, too.

You are right, I will not mix the two.

Jitka's post has opened my eyes. This will be my only hols in 2016 and my family is involved, so I will pass on this one.

Have a nice Christmas and see you all next year!

Franko


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Angela Rimmer  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 00:35
Member (2014)
German to English
+ ...
There will be other jobs Dec 14, 2015

Jitka Komarkova (Mgr.) wrote:

...ask yourself a few questions:
- whether you deserve your holidays,
- whether you have worked hard ever since 2015 started,
- whether it is true that there will NOT be another opportunity for similar hols in Q1 2016...
- whether you decision to work during hols may influence others who are going to spend the hols with you...

If you answer "yes" to any of the above questions, you should probably enjoy your holidays...
I think it is as simple as that!


I think Jitka makes some very good points.

According to your profile, Franko, you have been translating for 15+ years so you know that there will be other jobs, probably other jobs that don't expect a "friend's discount" as well! I think maybe, like many other freelancers, you just need to hear it from someone else that it is OK to turn down work, even lucrative work, in favour of spending time with your family in a cabin 75 km from civilisation

(Also, just as an extra point, I find that when I am not sure about accepting a job, it is always better to trust my instincts and SAY NO -- those are always the jobs that end up being problematic and not worth it!)


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Francisco Vare
Poland
Local time: 01:35
Polish to Spanish
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Angela... Dec 14, 2015

...you are totally right. I just needed someone to convince me LOL...

I always have new jobs and projects coming my way. I will just enjoy my holidays

Thank you guys, you are all great!


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Jitka Komarkova (Mgr.)  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 01:35
Member (2013)
English to Czech
+ ...
Well-done! Dec 14, 2015

I am happy for you, Francisco!
You are going to have an amazing time with your family in an isolated place. I did the same last year, no internet connection, no phone calls... walking 4 hours to reach a chalet in the middle of mountains in high Tatras... you could hear a snow flake falling...
you and your family may also hear that this year

With warm and friendly wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous and Happy New Year!
Jitka


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Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 00:35
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
How much is your family worth to you? Dec 14, 2015

Francisco Vare wrote:
However, the possibilities of having internet one way or another are zero. No telephone, no friends, no neighbours. Just me, my family and a little house lost in the woods 75 kilometers from civilization...

Presumably they aren't worth too much if you're going to throw away that one time in the year you reserve for them in exchange for a job that:
- will earn you less per word than you normally earn
- will probably take you longer than normal, maybe much longer, so an even-more-reduced rate for your time
- could go totally and utterly pear-shaped with the result that you lose a client and a friend - and maybe your family into the bargain.

But it's your decision, and I get the feeling you've already decided anyway. And I see now that you've already made that decision public. Phew! Happy holidays.


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