The Lone Traveller

A Canadian girl finding her way across the ocean.

Apparently I lack some particular perversion which today’s employer is seeking,

It’s officially been two weeks since I last made my way into the halls of the company which had its talons into my life for nine, nearly 10 months. Sweet sweet freedom has been breathed in and it’s safe to say that my skin is also breathing a lot better without the cramped, bad air-circulated, stressed-induced environment.

Over the years I’ve had many jobs, having the opportunity to get the feel for the different type of work out there. I’ve worked at summer camps, at book stores, at coffee shops, at newspapers and magazines, at clothing stores, and all the extras odds and sods you can think of. My favourite, by far, was and probably always will be working at a book store. The distraction from all the different attracting covers, the heavy dry feel of the air created by the abundance of books, the people ready to give away a part of their life in order to immerse themselves in the pages of a new book, and of course the quirky staff that always makes up a book store.

My least favourite thus far, has been a call centre. So why, for over nine months, would I put myself through that? Simple. Availability, and well money.

From my experience in Ottawa, if you’re looking for some sort of retail job where you can get 20-40 hours a week with at least minimum wage, you’ll come across a position within a matter of weeks. Two weeks, three weeks if you aren’t looking that hard. Safe to say I took advantage of that over the years and never fully appreciated how lucky us Ottawans are when it comes to work access. In Ireland, thanks to the economic situation which seems to be affecting more and more countries, finding a job is no where near that easy. I can’t tell you the amount of countless signs I’ve walked by, offering people the opportunity to work a grand total of five hours a week. Five hours? Come on.

This experience started, for me, as a means of getting thrown into a new world and being placed in situations I wasn’t used to. The biggest one: not knowing a soul in the city I moved to. Once I got past that stage and realised that making friends on your own accord isn’t actually that challenging, I had to find a new purpose to this trip. Travelling. Travelling to Germany, to Scotland, to Northern Ireland, to Portugal, and soon to France, were all a part of the new goal I had for myself. The goal to see as much as I could while still maintaining a daily routine and life style. Safe to say, money was a necessity.

I’ve thought about settling for a crummy job at McDonald’s or Burger King, flipping food for customers, going home smelling of oil and having sore feet. I’d pay the bills, I’d have shopping money, and I wouldn’t have to worry too much about anything else, but all that would mean no travelling. So gone was that idea and in came call centres!

In the long run call centres aren’t terrible if you have factors in your favour. A good team to support you, a good manager and lead that cares about your needs, the ability to leaving your sensitive side at home and not taking things personally.

Tedious, long hours, rude customers, being considered a number, but also steady hours, good money, and good people to work with. A balance that again, doesn’t always fall in your favour, but if you take it with a grain of salt the experience can be alright. I made it through after all.

They say money isn’t everything, and they’re right. Happiness above most things, would be everything. At least to me. So when you’re faced with the options of sucking up and dealing with something that isn’t so bad, allowing you the possibility of happiness down the line, why wouldn’t you go for it? You’ve got to work for what you want.

So for now, until I start my new job in a few weeks, I will relish in the fact of being a free woman. Putting together a cookbook from recipes found online, working on written materials, pounding through Michael Scott’s Alchemyst series, staying away from shopping, playing with my adopted kitty and enjoying the privilege of either sleeping in or getting up early, and looking forward to the latest-planned trip, Le Tholy.

Meet Mina, the newest addition to the family.

Lisbon, Portugal - May 2014

Lisbon, Portugal - May 2014

Lisbon, Portugal - May 2014

Lisbon, Portugal - May 2014

Lisbon, Portugal - May 2014

Fota - May 2014

Fota - May 2014

Fota - May 2014

Fota - May 2014

Fota - May 20

Fota - May 2014

Fota - May 2014

Fota - May 2014