Sunday, 23 November 2008

London Rebounding

I have been fairly lazy when it has come to posting my blog entries. While in London, I would periodically write entries ahead of time (I really had nothing to do!) which is why there are several posted today (prewritten and unposted stuff). Today’s entry is really a today entry though! I am back at Starbucks, buzzing on an assortment of caffeinated beverages, and thankful that my spell check can spell caffeinated because I can’t. To drown out the surrounding conversations, I have Duffy blaring out of my headset. No. You don’t really blare Duffy; call Duffy my newly formed English addiction. Playing Warwick Avenue, I can close my eyes, and be transported back to London; running through Victoria Station (that song was ALWAYS playing in Victoria Station). Wait. Sitting alone at Starbucks, on a Saturday night, writing blog entries and listening to Duffy? Am I still in London?!?!?!? No.

What should I be doing? Reading my thesis. Yes, I had completed part of it – 30 pages on the history of mass bison kills on the Great Plains. It is boring as h*ll. As you will read to the left - university stifles creativity, and kills the writing abilities of the average individual. My thesis is a testament to that very point. You can ignore these statements if you are one of the people who I will be *politely* asking to proofread my thesis. If in the coming months you are faced with an in-person or email request from me, asking if you would like to read what I have written, then my thesis is highly intriguing and will seek to answer those longstanding, life altering questions. You will be gripped. I will also be providing caffeinated beverages and sugary snacks to make the task seem less arduous. Promise. If you are already bored by my blog entries, I promise that my thesis will make up for it.

Oh wait…hang on…need to check the ITV website in England to see who has been voted out of X Factor…..Rachel…hmmm…

OK so I am digressing. Where I have I been this past week? In short- sleeping, moping, thinking, etc. I made the mistake of ignoring my email. Sorry – but Leanne needed to descend into her misery; sometimes it’s a trip best taken alone. This past week has been emotional – I thought that I was inconvenienced in London; I was mistaken. The temptation to return is overwhelming, and I will. Unfortunately I can’t do it tomorrow, as I would like. There is no point in going back already – I doubt there will be steady work heading into Christmas. I need to finish my thesis, and say that I at least accomplished something in this return. No – that’s not the only thing that I need to accomplish; I need to learn to let go of this place. It’s a hard reality to sit in a place that you chose to return to, and realize that you don’t belong there. And I don’t anymore – Thunder Bay has nothing to offer me. I keep arriving at that conclusion, but have difficulty in accepting it. Really my life here is no different than it was in London; it’s just less interesting; I can’t just go down the block to escape. I am still lonely here; I still seek to find ways to entertain myself; I am still contributing to Starbucks to fight my loneliness. The big difference? I have less independence here; I don’t have my anonymity. There comes a point that you realize that you need to live your life. At the expense of my sanity, I will do just that.

I can’t say its all bad being in Thunder Bay though. My familiarity is here; Mom, friends, and dogs. At the end of the day, isn’t that what we all pursue? Familiarity. Unfortunately in my pursuit of familiarity I am screwing myself. Ya, I said it. I am screwing myself. I would love to live in a place with fresh air for the rest of my life. Stay in a city of 100,000 people, that poses no challenges to get around. I know where everything is. I know how things work here. And it is at the point that you realize you are stagnating and becoming highly anal. Short of becoming a professional writer (and after my thesis is completed, that will be a seriously doubtful career choice) there isn’t one career aspiration that I have that would allow me to remain here.

And what exactly are my proposed career aspirations? Ultimately – to find a job that I love. This is a difficult time to be finding a career though. You know that Credit Crunch/Crisis thingy that the media is so eager to discuss? Well it has ramifications on jobs. Unfortunately the world is sinking into unemployment. The necessary job skills and qualifications are changing – it is a cr*ppy time to be in your twenties or thirties and just starting out in life. Ten years ago, when I started university, I think there was a greater hope. Unfortunately things change over the course of a decade.

In Thunder Bay I am qualified to work in places like Old Navy, Walmart, etc. Reality has it, that I actually can’t afford to work in those places – seriously – I would have to declare bankruptcy, and I am trying my damnedest not to. I have contemplated the one-year Masters of Journalism at Western. I would love to write professionally, and pursue hard hitting stories in the Middle East. Exactly. I can’t stay in Thunder Bay to work for the Associated Press. I am presently applying to Liverpool’s Masters of Science in International Human Resource Management. Ya. INTERNATIONAL Human Resources – can’t stay here for that either. I have pondered International Aid and Development in Africa – nope…Thunder Bay isn’t an option. How about teaching? Nope, not even with teaching can I stay in Thunder Bay. What does it all mean? I am going to have to accept that I am going to be inconvenienced and that I need to let go.

Two days ago I filled out a job application for a clothing company. One of the questions in the application asked “Why do you a desire a position with *COMPANY* and what are your career aspirations?”. I know what this question means – it is the moment at which the applicant gets to kiss some *ss. The question should be answered: “I want a job with your company because I absolutely adore your clothing, and feel that I could provide a positive contribution to your team. It is my goal to stay with the company in the hopes that I excel, and continue to grow.” Leanne is past the point in her life where she wants to bullsh*t her way to a job. Here is my ego – but I just can’t make myself drip for minimum wage employment anymore. Do you really think that I am aspiring to work for minimum wage? Is that why I went to university for ten years? I will gladly take a job for minimum wage, and generally I have always worked in customer service; I’m just saying, be realistic. Needless to say I didn’t kiss *ss on that application, and I won’t get a phone call. Next week, when I’m over my ego and reacquaint myself with reality, I will scrap the degrees from my resume and brown nose my way to a job. Fall from grace. And you know what? Realization is far easier that implementation.

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