I felt I had to do something drastic in order to survive. I was in a strange place emotionally before leaving the island but I have decided that not leaving situations is one of my issues. I am often too well versed in staying within a situation that is harming me simply because I cannot see a way out that works for me.

Changing situations that I could work within and figure out is also an issue when I am catastrophizing and worrying. I think I’ve done both kinds of change since I have been here. But I have also been well served by change.

This is where I live and work now. I accepted a job I found on craigslist to work at the giftshop at the Columbia Icefields Discovery Center. I suspected that because I had been currently a cashier at Walmart that I would have no issue with long lines of people. I had worked at a wilderness lodge beyond cellphone service just out of high school. But that wilderness lodge was actually kind of close to home so I did get back to see my family almost every weekend. Strathcona was well run enough that I got weekends consistently. It isn’t that the icefields are poorly run, just that they operate on a scale so much larger than strathcona and its a strange dynamic here. I’m sure it was a strange dynamic at strathcona I was just SO young.

The giftshop ended up being extremely stressful but I wonder how much of that was the giftshop and how much of that was the manager at the giftshop who ended up being fired for various reasons… not the least of which theft. But really he was just all around extremely weird. I saw my opportunity when one of the janitorial staff who seemed to hate janitorial started working with us in the gift shop. Through a roundabout way I talked to the manager of operations and made some inquiries about switching me for the janitorial guy. Everyone felt like they were stealing the golden egg laying hen out of that deal. And I’ll never stop being proud of that bit of maneuvering in a job sense.

As a janitor, I find no part of my job disgusting because I have a specific belief that it is my job to make sure people aren’t disgusted. While others here are about enriching the experience, I am about preventing bad experience. This is something I feel comfortable with no matter how hard it is, and its pretty hard. The washrooms take 15 minutes to get trashed and I’m literally not allowed in the men’s room.

My goal is to go back home with enough money saved that I can get a working car that will be safe and running for at least six to twelve months. I’m a bit worried I can’t do that.

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