night shift (2004-07-20 - 3:53 a.m.)
So it's 4 am and I'm on my first night shift at the hostel. Luckily for me it's been a quiet night, because they didn't really bother training me at all, just told me to lock the door and kind of left me to it. John came down and showed me what to do, though, and kept me company for the first half of my shift. It's actually quite nice - nobody else is around and I have internet access, so it's restful and I'm not bored. (Just exhausted). Anyway, it means I can listen to CKUA over the internet! I have missed it greatly, though listening to it is making me homesick. And what's all this about severe storm warnings? Sounds like the weather's nuts there!
It was my first day as a catering assistant today. I hate NI railways - the train I needed was late, then was delayed again due to some problems with the track. I ended up taking the train to one stop short of my destination and walking, but I managed to get lost and wound up showing up late to work. Nobody seemed to notice, though. In fact, they seemed confused as to who wanted me to be there in the first place.
Also, they seem to have decided my name is Christine. I walked in and they said, "Are you Christine?" I said, "I'm Anne." The lady nodded, then proceeded to introduce me to the whole kitchen as Christine. I corrected them for the first six times or so, until I eventually just gave up and started answering to Christine. (Luckily I rather like that name!) I was talking to the Polish girl who's temping there as well, the other low person on the totem pole. They introduced her to me as Amanda, which seemed a very odd name for a Polish person. I said, "Are you really called Amanda?" She rolled her eyes and said, "My name is Magda, but no matter how many times I say it they just call me Amanda, so I just started answering to it." After that I didn't feel so bad about being renamed Christine!
The job is okay. It's just a big cafeteria, like you'd find in a school or hospital. I chopped things and mixed things and served people - not very hard, and at least it keeps you active (which I will need tomorrow in order not to fall asleep). The day actually went decently quickly. I wouldn't want to do it for more than a few weeks, though. Makes me wonder about the girls who have been there for years and started working there right out of school. Doesn't it drive them nuts?
That's the other thing about jobs like that, though - no matter how lowly it is, there is ALWAYS someone who's on a power trip. It's like they're so proud they've been working an entry-level job long enough to be experts at it, and they need to show it by bossing around anyone who's new. Didn't have too much of this today, though, luckily - just one girl who had slight power-trip tendencies.
The other good thing about this job that I overlooked is the free food. This alone might make it all worthwhile. We get a quick morning break (and scones or cereal or eggs) and lunch (where we can have whatever we want). Between the free food and not having time to spend money, I might come out of this with quite a lot of cash! I just hope they don't send me home before the end of the week... they didn't seem too sure why an extra temp had been ordered.
The trains messed me up in the afternoon too. I had to wait 45 minutes for one (supposed to come every 15 minutes) and didn't get back till 5:00. I went straight to bed, but it was really hard to sleep at that time of the afternoon even though I knew I'd be working a night shift. I'm sure I won't have that problem tomorrow though! I imagine I'll be tired enough to sleep through an earthquake.
Anyway, working this many shifts at weird hours is really hard, but if I can get through it this should just about pay for my last week of gallivanting before I head back to Canada.
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