One of my favourite questions to posit to young persons is: “What do you want to do when you grow up / finish school?”
The answers tickle me silly. I love asking three to five-year-olds to see what they believe they may be; usually it comes under either doctor, teacher, policeman or vet (although once I was told “optometrist”. Now that opened my eyes). Asking soon-to-be-school-levers intrigues me to know what they’re into. I find it fascinating, the alternative areas people are drawn to or see as the profession for them.
Throughout my 23 (24 next week, eeeeek!) years, my idea of the job for me has changed a few times. However from nine-years-old I had unwavering faith in my dream to be a journalist. I think my insane stubborness led me to actually do it, more so than the idea of the job itself. So here I am, journalism degree in hand, yet somewhere along the line I realised it’s not really me. Writing, oh yes absolutely! But the newsroom environment? I don’t think I could do it everyday.
My first idea of the ideal job was owning a $2 Shop. Between the ages of four to seven or so, I had an obsession with collecting ornaments. Pocket money, birthday money, rogue found coins, you name it, it all went into porcelain figurines. Henio knew he only had to flick a $2 coin my way and I’d be bribed to go on the ski board (under no other circumstances would I step into that river). I had a massive, extremely ugly wicker shelf errected in my bedroom gifted (I think Deb would use the term “offloaded”) to me by my Babcia’s cousin. It boasted my collection, all strategically staggered to be seen. What better job could there possibly be than selling them myself, and for a mere $2 a pop?
At about five, I flirted with idea of being a nun. (A sideline from my $2 Shop venture or instead of? Knowing me, in conjunction. Wanted it all from a young age. Funny thing is, I actually had a fair few nun ornaments at the time). I think it was less about the faith and more about the comfy-looking habits. Plus you got to live a little complex with your “sisters”. How glorious! But that plan didn’t pan out. I think it was around the time I came across Simon from my older brother’s soccer team, and discovered that nuns are unable to wed. To hell with that!
For some reason, the idea of being an archeologist highly appealed when I hit about eight. I don’t know why; aside from meagre sandcastles at the beach, I hadn’t had any other experience with a spade. But we were studying Ancient Egypt at school, and my passion for history took seed. I could think of nothing better than unearthing artefacts and realising relics. In fact, thinking about it now still gives me a thrill.
When I hit 16 I started working part-time at Onyx Cafe and Bar in Cambridge, and eight years on I still breeze in for a few-week stints. (Txt the owner, my “Uncle” Barry: “Hi Baz! Back home from [insert date here] to [insert date here]. Want me? Have me!” It’s pretty much a template in my phone). Being the Onyx boomerang (i.e, always coming back) combined with managing a cafe in Brisbane for a few months had me thinking about my own hospo haven. But the irregular hours, the stress of staff and the often unrewarding monetary side soon expelled the notion. Plus, I wanted to be famous.
Well I’m a yoga teacher! And I’m geared up to go on that front. Along with writing. And marrying people.
But all I want to do is travel. It’s all I think about; where next? I’m heading home to work and save to go again. Europe? Africa? Destination unknown. But somewhere soon. I just want to link it in with writing and be able to do it combined (with all expenses paid for).
In the past it was often the case that once a person was in a profession, they stayed in it for the entirety of their working lives. I love that nowadays lots of people switch to completely differing careers. The woman who owns the yoga studio in Cambridge was a journalist once upon a time. One of my favourite friends who part-owns the cool clothes shop (also another one of the holes my fingers are in employment-wise) used to be an accountant. Swinging between sectors is gradually becoming the norm.
You need to love your job. You do it everyday. It’s important to be happy in what you do.
I feel like I’m heading down the right path, even though it’s windy and twisty and I don’t exactly know where it’s going. A nunnery at the end perhaps?
Well, I guess I’ll (sign of the) cross that should I come to it.