Tuesday, August 23, 2011

routine, job, commitments

the nanny named fran
during my desperate search for a job i came across several au pair/nanny websites. for kicks i joined a couple and created a profile. i figured it would be a good back up. the nanny named fran was one of my cherished childhood shows, so if i could maybe find a family like fran fine did when she found the sheffield's, and took care of maggie, grace and brighton, maybe then everything could be just fine. before i knew it, i started getting tons of messages from families in europe, the states and all across canada. but i didn't see a family that matched what i was looking for, or what i thought i was looking for. for about a week, i kept in contact with one woman from toronto, who i was going to go work with for the summer. but she found another nanny closer by, so that opportunity disappeared as soon as it had been offered to me. after that upset i deleted most of my accounts and only kept one open. this move drastically decreased the messages in my inbox, and i started to forget about my nanny back-up plan, and focused on all the other jobs that the job-bank's were spewing out. then about two weeks ago i got an email from a woman who was interested! i checked out her family's profile; calgary, four kids, energetic, adorable. ever since then we have been messaging back and forth. it started with lots of general get to know you questions, and then before i knew it we were skyping and then i was picking out flights.
i am leaving in two days. since i found out that i was leaving, i haven't been able to settle on one emotion. sitting at my clutter-filled kitchen table, a damp breeze blows through the window above the sink, my eyes lock on an empty jar of olives sitting on the countertop, and thoughts slowly enter my head. as my eyes glass over, fixated on the olive jar, my thoughts pick up speed and begin to race through my head.
i'm excited, i'm terrified, i'm relieved, i'm nervous, i'm over thinking this, i've got to just enjoy it, i have so much to pack, what if i pack too much and am the kid that has to frig around with shampoo and underwear at the check-in counter, what if they tricked me and don't email me back and this was all some cruel joke, what if i don't make friends, what if i become even more depressed than i was here, what if i get homesick, i've been all the way around the world and wasn't homesick...IDIOT!, what if they dress real fancy and my dog haired cotton picked lululemon yoga pants for the non-yoga addict are cheesy, what if they only eat hotdogs and tacos, what if they pray before meals, what if they are racist, what if they think i'm not pretty, what if the kids don't like me, what if one of them is a noisy eater(my biggest pet peeve), what if i don't feel like i am contributing enough for what they are paying me - inhale - i'm going to do fine - exhale - i'm going to fuck it all up - inhale - i'm nauseous - exhale - i am twenty three - inhale - i can talk really fast in my head - exhale -.
so now i have a routine, i have a job, and i have commitments. now i live in calgary.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

my turn

jacob and john @ halls harbour
since i returned from my trip, i have been having requests from other traveler's to surf my couch. up until this weekend, i have either not been at home, they found another host, or their R.V. couldn't be parked on the slight incline that our driveway provides. this weekend however, things changed. ma & pa were away for the weekend. this was beneficial in numerous ways, the biggest being that my stress levels were non-existant because my mother wasn't around to be freaking out about the dog hair on the rug, or that dirty dishes have reached a comical height or that the sheets in the spare room are wrinkled and need to be changed. i keep trying to tell her that the people requesting to come stay here, understand its not the plaza, and that they are just thrilled to have a place to lay their head at night.
on friday night i hosted my first two COUCHSURFERS!, from montreal! i was so excited!!! i picked them up from the a gas station on the highway and brought them home. they were both very tired from traveling, so we had a relaxed night of board games and went to bed early. anna and guillaume are hitchhiking around the maritimes for the month of august, and stayed with me the one night, before i plonked them back at the side of the highway, how i found them.
on saturday night giggles insued. jacob and john were my second wave of surfers, hitting the night right after anna and guillaume left me. jacob and john met at duke university. jacob is a north carolina native, and john is from new zealand. our accent hybrids were delightful. we went to halls harbour where we watched a glorious sunset, which was followed by jacob belting out a disney classic, aladdin's 'magic carpet ride' well balancing atop a boulder. i then treated them to an east coast classic, garlic fingers and donair sauce. we wrapped up our 12 hour friendship by playing dress up, shotgunning beer, guess that shot, and cuddling on top of a picnic table while trying to see shooting stars during a meteor shower. i can't wait to have more CS'ers stay with me!!! definitely a worth while experience. especially now that i get to experience it from the role of host instead of guest. 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

books and boatshoes

i went to frenchies. i found mens size eleven boat shoes and two books. i was thrilled to find the boat shoes, no matter how big they are on my feet. i also am an avid reader, and was pumped to find two more gems to add to the collection. what should i do with my life, and angela's ashes. i couldn't tell if the first was a lame frenchies reject book, i contemplated this at length, because there was a hard cover version and a paperback, not a good sign. that fact alone put it in the 'more than one copy' section along with rejects such as what to expect when you are expecting, of which there was four, in a wide variety of editions. i bought the book. a well spent dollar fifty.
i have a rule not to start one book, before i finish the one i am already reading. it was a common problem as a child and i would never finish the potential earth shattering, however slow to start book i was currently working on. but that is just what i did. i pushed post-it note filled anna karenina to the side and opened back the first page of what should i do with my life.
i still am not sure if it is a suitable frenchies reject book. i think i am too biased and diluted with awe at how perfect the timing was that this book should fall into my hands.
i have underlined and dog-ear paged the shit out of this book. it confronted my fear that if i make a wrong choice now, it will fuck me for the rest of my life.
it talked about this old story of three men who were laying bricks. when asked why they were doing it, the first responds, 'i'm doing it for the wages.' the second guy says 'i'm doing it to support my family.' the third guy says (with what i like to imagine is a gigantic smile plastered across his face) 'i'm helping to build a cathedral.' i want my work to be like building that cathedral. i want to talk about my life and say 'i want to be a good parent', not 'i want three kids and a nice house.'
the stories reassured me that it all takes time. that i shouldn't freak out because i don't know what my passion is yet. that interests form into hobbies or volunteer work, which grow into passions; and it takes time, more time than anyone imagines.
when i started freaking out about all of this grown up business about five months ago, people told me many of the same things i am getting out of this book. but for some reason, these words of wisdom are just starting to click into place now. i guess i needed time to process it all, or time to let myself really hear and understand what my parents and friends were telling me.
i am reading stories of a business executive on wall street who left everything to become a catfish farmer in tennessee. he found his passion at 40. i am half way through the book and smile at how calm it makes me with each passing line.
i am 23 and i am discovering my passions in life. i'm okay with not knowing just yet.