Thank you very much. I don't intend to give up and I'm trying to come up with side projects or temp work myself. Unfortunately, I'm in financial services. Or WAS in it and so are 500 other people in this area. I've actually noticed more cold calls from recruiters since the election. Maybe it's just wishful thinking but I have to imagine that businesses now have an idea that some sort of checks will exist against the reign of terror of the past 2 years.
There are companies starting to remodel or are hiring out to do studies in preparation of construction. Almost all work in the building industry here stopped in Jan/Feb 2008. In the last 2 weeks our small office has picked up 8 med/large sized contracts that will pull us through next summer. That is more work than the last 18 months put together, and all but 1 is private, non-gov contracts.
I like to think that the Architect/Engineer side of the building industry is somewhat of an indicator of where things are going. We are busy when companies are preparing to make changes to their properties.
Starting in 2006 we were busy down-sizing facilities and trying to make more use out of smaller areas. Our current projects all involve expansion or looking into completely new and larger locations.
You say you are in financial services, have you considered trying to teach night community ed classes? Basic financial strategies, "how to get through tough times", even "checkbook 101" type classes.
Depending on where you live, I bet you could put together a few classes a month at a community center for some extra $$.
Just an idea that popped in my head.