Monday, November 16, 2009

Day 29: first day of Awesomeness

Went into my first day of work bright & early with AB. I didn't feel nervous, just completely unsure what to expect.

The Awesome office is cluttered & adorable; cotton candy pink with black & white stripes. Sweet & smart, like the girls who work there.

this isn't their office but it's a similar feel (from we heart it)

AB took me down to Forest Park, an oddly-named cement courtyard in the city where the festival is building a maze-like art installation. There I met J, my supervisor, who is total techie/hippie/bogan (bogan is kind of redneck - no offence meant to him!) with long almost dreadlocked hair & a zz-top beard. But you can't judge a book by its cover; he's super nice. As soon as I got there I was really intimidated tho - I was the only girl & all the guys were tough looking techies & all I could think is, its been a while since I wielded a screw gun... But he let me run some errands with AB to get familiar with the city & by the time we met up again, there were other girls on crew.

I helped bump in (load in) some real airplane chairs for an installation, and saw the space they're setting up for AB's exhibit. I went on a supply run with J to the house where he's staying; we went into the backyard and -- there are KNIVES embedded into REFRIGERATORS. And rusty tore up fridges all over the yard. Apparently his friend who lives there not only throws knives but creates (really cool actually) lampshades out of the hole-y sides of refrigerators. Phew. It was one of those moments where you think, should I laugh or run...?

i thought this could be me! (from we heart it)

Back to the site & J wanted me to stick with him bc he found out I speak a bit of French & could possibly communicate with the french artists they brought in. Oh la la! THEN I got nervous. But I thought, just do what you can & if you really suck, this'll all be over in a few weeks anyway. :)

Met the Frenchies, introduced myself in french, explained I speak "un petit peu" & stumbled over a brief conversation. Its so hard to understand them, but they seem to appreciate me making the effort & throughout the day I had quite a few muddled conversations that were exhausting but "tres interessant". :)

I was pretty much j's shadow for the first 5 hours; I felt pretty useless. When he took the frenchies to the hardware store, I couldn't fit in the truck so I went to the office for lunch. My morning had left me feeling uncharacteristically quiet & unconfident; its tough enough starting a new job, let alone in a foreign country & doing something youre quite rusty at. But after a chicken wrap & a coffee, I reckoned I was ready to try again.

this isn't the installation but it's pretty similar...  (from we heart it)

J was still sorting things with the french so I offered my help on a crazy Alice-in-Wonderland-on-crack type art installation. I don't think they really needed another person but I was tired of standing around. That was nice bc it was all young people working & I got to pick up a hammer & a screw gun without fear of being laughed at.

I did eff up though - ugh on my very first day! - the artist asked me to bracket the plaster deer head to the TV (don't ask) so I was screwing it in & the antler snapped off. Balls! In my defense, she was very unclear how she wanted it attached & I didn't know the antler was so fragile. But I felt terrible & as I hot glued it back together, I hoped she wouldn't tell J or blacklist me from working her show. Oops.

After a few other small tasks, it was 5 & she didn't have anything more to do for the day so I checked in with J & he said I could go. Checked in with AB & she told me where to catch the bus but she'd be done in an hour & 1/2 so I decided to just wander the city for a bit & go home with her.

This really is a beautiful place. Its not a very tall city and there's a lot of green space, which makes it feel welcoming. Its already decorated for Christmas (!); at home I'd be mad but here its just pretty.

I walked down through the park, past a Ferris wheel to the water & sat under a palm tree to watch the sunset. It seems every major city in Australia has a Ferris wheel; not in a theme park, just in the city, which is funny to me.

Caught the bus home with AB when she was done with work & she & The Scot went to workout with their personal trainer, so I had the night to myself for a while. Just messed around online (obviously got a fix of my we heart obsession) & watched TV, then to bed.  :)  Another big day of work tomorrow...

Today I am so grateful & happy for:
~ my first day of work is out of the way
~ practicing my French
~ leftovers

xo! n.

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