Monday, 9 May 2011

Working Holiday Visa

Ha travelling. You, your backpack, and the world. Have you noticed  how heavier your backpack gets with time? That’s the emotional baggage mate. Yep. You’re taking it with you no matter where you’re going. No worries it gets through customs all right. You don’t even notice it until it catches up with you. Until you have the sudden desire to leave everything behind and start fresh on the other side of the world. Again. But when you are ALREADY on  the other side of the world there is only one thing you can do. Face it.
Let me introduce myself. Annabelle. 32 year s old. Workaholic. Hi Annabelle.
The worst thing about workaholics is that they know they are. And they are absolutely proud of it. They usually work with other workaholics who tell them they work too much. There is a question you can’t ask a workaholic ‘’ How was your day off?’’ because they don’t have days off.
Of course the first thing I did when I arrive in Oz was… work. For free. My compassionate side. Volunteer work. It s not quite like work, it’s an activity you can do for as many hours as you want, or at least enough  to have the ‘’ I work so I am’’ feeling + food and accommodation. And then I had to find another job. For money you see.  So in the morning I work for free, in the afternoon I work for money. Add 60 km return 7 days a week and you ll get the perfect package for the workaholic backpacker that I was.

As my skin began to get paler , my face about 50 year older , I could not quite remember in which country I was WORKING. Then there was that voice in my head who said ,  in a very thick Aussie accent  ‘’ Oy Mate you’re in Oz, chill out will ya’’ Yep I was doing it again. Work my way through life. Working visa. I think there was something in between, something called h.o.l.i.d.a.y. Ho what?????
It was time for a shock. I am NOT my work. Have a job with no responsibilities. Part time. For a change.  If your little ego can take it , that is. Work as a dishwasher in a café. No not a permanent one don’t be silly , a dishwasher who covers for a 17 year old kid when he has football. How s that for a therapy. 6 months ago I was wondering how to get my staff to work faster and now I am the one who s too slow washing bloody dishes. Yes you can laugh. 6 months ago I was wondering what I was going to say at my next staff meeting. Now I’m just wondering if I fancy a café latte or a cappuccino ( courtesy of the Italian guy I’m working with) . Yes it’s hard for my little ego. I want to shout sometimes that I was a teacher before and also a manager. That I should not be doing this. That I did not come all the way from Europe for this.  But I did.
And then I laugh. Because it’s all a joke. And then I do what I do best . Entertain people. People who take it too seriously. I haven’t been that much of a laugh for a very long time. When people see me come to work they start to laugh. They know there will be wheelie bins competitions, ketchup wars or silly jokes. They often ask me why I’m so happy.  Why not.  I just met myself. 
So working HOLIDAY visa. Holiday… that means beach right? Here I go to da beach. It’s awesome to be European here. You’ve got the beach to yourself these days.  And when you do go swimming, How much fun it is to look at the bunch of freezing  Aussies who ‘s watching you in disbelief , thinking ‘’ what the hell is she doing?  it is W.I.N.T.E.R ‘’ , As they get  ready to call the coast guard ( please do, he’s hot) I tell them I’m European and the water is still warmer  now than it is in Brighton in Summer. Tough these Europeans mate.
How cool it is to add the holiday to the working visa. Chillax in the AM , work in the ‘’avo’’ . and free week ends. Guilt free? Getting there…
 Let me introduce myself. Annabelle . Loves writing, yoga , meditation , sports  and <Australian> Life. Non Smoker. Welcome Mate.

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