Greener Pastures

An opportunity has arisen to allow for my escape from my current situation at the roadhouse. An opening magically appeared in my schedule, and I shall be taking the fullest advantage of that in the form of moving on.

I…don’t like…not liking people?

I have far better things to do with my time and energy than spend it on people who do not improve my life in any way, let alone those who actually seem to go out of their way to make things worse.

I am not happy, because lately, every conversation I have with people is about…people.

There are better things to talk about. Stories, experiences, thoughts, opinions…

I don’t actually enjoy living in places where gossip is the main topic of conversation.

Also, at the risk of sounding a bit childish, or redundant… I don’t like being unhappy. It’s not good for me, it’s not good for anyone.

I know who I can be, when I’m happy. That’s who I want to be, all the time.

I don’t need to put myself in a situation where that best version of myself is nearly impossible to call out.

I don’t have much time left, but I’m sending out applications. I have two days in which to build a plan and disappear.

Like smoke into midnight air; there, following beauty, then gone, into the night.

 

Bark Hut Bayou

Today, we had music at the Roadhouse.

It was a little bit strange, because usually, we know ahead of time that there’s going to be music, but, today we got surprise music! So, that was cool.

(It delayed my Twin Peaks marathon I was planning, in order to indoctrinate some other staff members into the weird, but alas. Television shows will be there, and live music performances will not.)

It was good music, a man on a guitar, with a harmonica and a stomp-box, playin’ the blues and singing about his “Crocodile-Eatin’ Dog”.

It had the swampland-sandpaper sound that brought back images of the bayou.

The off-duty staff hung out to listen, and ended up playing Uno all night.

I love music. I love people. Life is beautiful.

All Around the World

Today, I was hanging laundry on the line, and a man came up to me and asked about camping here.

He rode up in his recumbent bicycle.

He’s from Belgium, and he’s biking around the world. He’s gone 64,000 miles, and Australia is his 48th country.

 

I love people.

 

Familiar Flight

I’m starting to look for other places to go. (Which is extremely frustrating, because I don’t have that much time left on my visa. It takes time to find work, so by the time I lined something up, it would be *very* short-term placement.)

The atmosphere at the roadhouse has shifted dramatically. It’s not something people are looking forward to, anymore. It’s something that people are dragged out to do.

I don’t like working in situations where I am so, completely, wholly, unhappy.

It kind of goes against…everything that I’m trying fill my life with.

I’m also hesitant to actually talk to the manager, because I’m pretty sure I’d manage to get myself fired. (Meaning that I feel like the manager is sort of actively *looking* for a reason to fire me.)

I think I might have mentioned that we *really* don’t get along…?

 

A *New* New Chef

Our new chef is amazing. She’s fulfilling her English stereotype of being unceasingly proper.

Which is actually kind of really cool for me, because it means that I get to learn all of the little things about how it *should* be.

It’s one of those things, about working with someone who actually  knows what they’re doing.

Most of the people that work in the kitchen here – we’re not chefs by trade. We didn’t go to school for it, we don’t know all of the rules. We’re all people who do other stuff, but were willing to work in the kitchen, and then…sort of got consumed by the kitchen and never left.

(It’s a friendly black hole though. It’s got a great stereo, and all of the food you could ever eat. It’s also got some pretty fantastic company. The kitchen crew is pretty strictly awesome folks at the moment. It’s fabulous.)

The Wet Begins

Last night, I was going to go to bed early (a side-effect of starting work at 5:30 in the morning every day.)

There was a little bit of wind. I walked outside, and saw lightning.

I figured the storm wouldn’t hit the Roadhouse though. It was a long way off.

I was beautifully, fantastically wrong.

The wind picked up, and I could feel the thunder rattle through my bed.

I grabbed my guitar and went out onto our back porch, sat on the couch, and played the storm in.

The staff quarters are underneath one giant, tin roof. The rain came, and it sounded like it was pounding. It sounded like the kind of onslaught that soaks you in moments. It wasn’t, but it was still enough to dance in. (It felt like Louisiana.)

 

We had a rain party. No one could sleep, so we played darts by torchlight and had to yell to be heard over the rain on the roof.

 

(Someone had popcorn. I haven’t had popcorn in ages.  Popcorn in the rain is one of those things that reminds me of growing up. On grey afternoons, my dad would look outside and say that it looks like a popcorn day, and we’d watch a movie at four o’clock in the afternoon and eat giant bowls of popcorn.)

 

Distinctly *Not* French

The Roadhouse is a crazy echoing cavern of gossip. (As, I suppose, is extremely likely in a tiny, remote place with a static population of approximately *ten*.)

Whenever something new happens, pretty much everybody knows about it *immediately*. (This probably isn’t helped by the fact that the walls between the rooms of the staff quarters may as well be paper for all the good they do to block sound.)y

So, when we were going to get two new ladies to join the staff, we all knew about it: Two French girls, one’s a cook, one’s a housekeeper.

Then, these two women arrive, and *everyone* thinks they’re going to be French (they were booked into our computer as “Mr. French Gal 1″ and “Mr. French Gal 2″.) and they  are both very confused, as one of them is from England and the other is Scottish.

 

Gossip: Seriously bad at conveying *real* information.

Conflicts of Personality

An observation about certain tactics used by those who abuse power:

In conversation, they start with a show of dominance, reminding you that *they* are in the position of power.

Then, they establish a completely arbitrary scale of improvement.

The trap is when they say that you weren’t doing very well *before*, (usually this comes as a not-so-subtle threat) and that *now* you’re doing *better*. This is the part that’s supposed to draw you in. If you invest in this arbitrary scale…you’re lost. Because it will never be something that can actually be measured in any way. It’s not about performance, it’s about creating a sense of loyalty.

It’s implied that the person in power…sees some sort of *potential* in you, and wants to push you to develop it.

It’s a trick. It’s enticing you to go to lengths to emotionally invest in pleasing the other person. Then, all they have to do to get you to bend over backwards is just, gently comment. “Hey. You seem back…to how you were before.” and then you’re stuck trying to figure out what ephemeral *whatever* they want to see. You spend all of your energy trying to figure out which actions make you seem “good” on this scale and which ones cause “backslide”.

Even though it’s all bullshit.

It’s all just power games.

It’s trying to trap you, because the only person who can ever say you’re doing “better” at this totally made-up thing, is the person who made it up.

If you don’t play the game – they get nasty.

 

 

On a completely related note: I really do not get along well with my new boss.

 

Mass Exodus

Today, more people walked out.

In particular…the last two people who really knew what they were doing.

It’s shaping up to be absolutely mad week.

The current chef put in his two weeks notice.

We’ve gotten a few new people in, but most of them aren’t really sure if they’re going to stay, and…walking out without giving notice is…really not a good precedent.

It doesn’t look like any free time will be appearing in the upcoming future.

 

In other news; we’ve turned off the fireball-ing fryer, because the fireballs were getting big enough to start making the chef uncomfortable.

 

I almost feel bad, but the place is running on duct tape and chewing gum…and I feel right at home. It’s the kind of “JUST MAKE IT WORK” that I’m used to.