In the Weeds: Making Waves
This week’s entry will be significantly shorter than the long rant from last week. (You’re welcome). My legs have only been on land for about 24 hours and the rum has only recently begun to dissipate from my circulatory system. I spent the last 8 days at sea and in St. Thomas and St. Martin aboard the largest cruise ship in the world. Yes, many have commented that this seems a strange thing to do after losing my income, but this trip was in the works for almost two years, and I didn’t pay for it. And after all the negativity of the last few weeks, I’d like to get back to my original promise of not falling into the angry server blog rut. So here is the happy story of how my husband and I found ourselves in the Caribbean Sea.
My father’s mother married my grandfather when she was sixteen. He had an eighth grade education, and she had the first of her six sons, my dad, when she was eighteen. Like me, she went into hospitality. Unlike me, she didn’t have the options that a college degree brings and cleaned hotel rooms for most of her life while he worked third shift at an aluminum plant. After a long marriage that included laughter, lots of card games and even “lookout point” make-out sessions during my lifetime, my grandfather passed away. By this time, they were living in a retirement community in Florida and my grandmother, always the caretaker, had befriended her elderly neighbor lady and was helping her go about the business of life. And when that neighbor died in 2007 and the business of death was revealed, my grandmother, who always had a huge heart and a small bank account, was a whole lot richer. True to form, she did not stuff her surprise fortune into a mattress to keep for herself. She called all her sons and all her grandchildren and invited us on a cruise. Twenty four of us were able to spend this past week in the presence of someone who reminded me that it is not the perfect table, the big bottle of wine, the thirty percent tip or the best restaurant job that matters. We all know that it’s the moments of love, family, laughter, dancing, friendship, and the hugs and the sound of the word “mama” from your kids after not seeing them for a week that make a heart full. But we need reminding every once and awhile. Thank you, Grandma.
That being said, as the trip ended, I couldn’t quite keep the anxiety at bay. I’m a total schedule girl and not having one to return to has me on edge. It’s even crept into my dreams. Three times I’ve dreamt that I show up at my old job and I’m smiling and chatting with co-workers and putting on my uniform and I walk into pre-shift and suddenly remember that I don’t work there anymore. It feels identical to the showing-up-naked-at-school dream.
I start my new job search in earnest tomorrow morning, so please join me next week for my adventures in recession employment hunting. Also next week, I promise to be sober, erm…soberer, and back on pace with stories from both the past and present.
Oh, and one more side note. On our cruise, my dad was reading Cruise Confidential: A Hit Below the Waterline: Where the Crew Lives, Eats, Wars, and Parties. One Crazy Year Working on Cruise Ships by Brian David Bruns. I’m sure you can guess where my mind went after seeing yet another “behind the scenes” book.
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