Junior draughtsman for 1 year. Couple of years Merchant Navy as Radio Officer. Year in the Falklands. 14 months Antarctica . Another year Falklands. 4 months in UK. 2 more years Falklands during which married and 1st son born. 18 months at sea, RMS "Darwin". Some months in East Anglia during which 2nd son born. 15 months Mauritius during which buried 2nd son, daughter born. UK. A year in Iran, 3rd son born. UK. Marconi Space and Defence Systems for a while.
From June 1975 i spent 22 years with Racal - incessant travelling, over 50 countries in first 11 years. Resident in Ecuador for 2 periods of 2years, as Technical Assessor with their army.
After a short time in Racal I had established myself as a good engineer in the field. I was eventually approached by the Personnel Manager and the Sales Manager for South America and, in a private meeting, told that the company was creating a new residential posting, that of Technical Manager in Chile. The company had secured a small contract and wanted someone on the spot to sort problems out and generally support the customer in technical matters. They wanted me to do the job. It wasn't advertised anywhere, they came straight to me. Well into my residency we acquired another contract. The Chilean Government's first draft of the contract document included a clause to the effect that "Racal Radio Ltd agrees to keep (me) in Chile as Technical Manager". That had never happened before or after to anyone else. Quite an accolade, and some indication of the confidence and trust which I had engendered in them. After nearly four years the company decided not to maintain the presence of a Technical Manager in Chile because no more sales seemed forthcoming.
Then spent 10 months or so in Mexico before coming back to the U.K. Messing around doing various low key, unchallenging and uninteresting jobs. Some time later, on the company's notice boards the position of resident Technical Manager/Chile was advertised and applications were solicited. Why? After the previously mentioned accolade? The job was given to someone else. Why? I doubt that I shall ever know. Eventually got transferred to the development lab. Made Redundant (fired, along with another 999 people.) Now reduced to bench technician, a.k.a. technical labourer. I retire in November 2004.
Total number of countries visited, over 70. The list of them got erased some time ago. I have just made another and can remember only 73. Not sure now whether I went to Jamaica or not, and there was a west African ex French colony but can't remember which one.