I’m using a photo of a cow in Huahine as the placeholder for this entry because I had no photo to metaphorically tie in the theme of this post. That and I thought it’s a really cool photo.
I sort of turned around the other day and realized “my gosh” my life here has really grown very busy…busy and full. Certainly we work hard on the ship, and we also have quite a bit of fun. I’ve been working hard on keeping it all balanced: meeting the wonderful people on board (read: partying), seeing as much of the destinations as possible, and working out/getting enough sleep so I don’t burn out. The temptation to really overdo it is huge when there’s so much to do, so I’m trying to keep it all in perspective.
The one particular part of my life on board that grew exponentially over the last week and a bit is the interaction with guests on aboard. And this has all been exciting and fun…so I didn’t quite realize how much time it was taking up and how much work it is! Goes to show how you don’t always notice the effort you put into things you enjoy.
So…the interaction with guests has expanded with opportunities I never would have imagined I’d get being so fresh on board and being just a junior officer. But I am getting much more comfortable with the guests, and I’m excited that with this increased comfort I’ve been given more chances to meet them (which fulfills for me the public/ambassador side of PR that I always love).
Recently at one of the formal nights, there was a shortage of officers available to host tables in the formal dining room…so I was asked. I never dreamed I’d get to eat the really fancy caviar and lobster with guests! The hosting went quite well. I think the guests like my enthusiasm and sheer joy at being here. And I use my newness as a clever disguise for not being 100% comfortable holding knife & fork or carrying sophisticated conversation with wealthy-types. I was asked to host a table again, and then I was given the opportunity to come to the Captain’s Quarters to help host some of the VIP guests I’ve gotten to know. Definitely a nice experience.
Now, interacting with people on board, I’ve recognized that some people are absolutely inspiring – and I’m spending extra time getting to know them (guests, special lecturers, crew with amazing stories). One special lecturer who stands out is Joe Kita – a longtime journalist and teacher who’s written a few very successful books about living out his greatest fears and regrets in life. These books got him on many television interviews, and brought him to lecture on Crystal.
Now, for the last two years, he’s joined the World Cruises to teach a memoir-writing course for guests.
Where am I going with this? As I’ve written, I felt like I was taking a big leap starting this whole adventure (steering away from a stable start to my career and doing something completely foreign and new to me). Now, I’m extremely excited to be literally in the moment of living out my dream.
But, the thought has started to creep in of “what next?” Back to settling down, back to London, or what?
Well with what Joe Kita is doing, I’m gaining a lot of inspiration. It’s illustrating to me that it’s entirely possible to make some money and have a go at a great life by just always pursuing your dreams and finding ways to get paid doing it.
So, who knows where life will go. But living the dream, I am realizing, can definitely be a lifelong dream.