It was nice seeing mum and dad eagerly hanging from the barrier behind the inbound flight gates at Melbourne Airport. Nice. I did miss them, I really did, but I was not ready to be back home yet. I felt some what depressed to be going back to our house, back to my lousy part-time job and now, the added need to look for full-time employment (which seemed bleak amidst a global economic crisis and employment downturn).
They ran to me, hugged and kissed me and told me how happy they were to have me home. I stood there and forced a smile. I felt guilty, though. I really was happy to see them, but somewhere deep down inside of me, I longed to be back in the USA. I would have stayed there longer had I not needed to come back in time for graduation. Had I had it my way, I would have skipped out on what I assume will be a long, boring ceremony, but I did not have it my way. The parental unit and the grandparents wanted that photo of me in my graduation gown and hat hanging proudly from their lounge room wall. I told them I could Photoshop them the image, but some how I am not too sure they appreciated the humor behind my sarcastic comment.
When family and friends asked how it felt to be home, I was honest with them. There was no point in lying. I told them I hated it and I wished I had spent more time in the USA. The looks on their faces were pretty amusing to me, not so much to my mother.
I had to start back at my part-time job today. I am pretty sure I was still jet lagged, but I was in dire need of earning money again. Back to the same crappy job that I had despised for the last eight years. The only positive to it was that they paid me well and annual leave was easily granted for when ever I wanted to jet off and experience the world. I cringe every time I need to step foot into this place. It was great seeing all my work mates again and sharing my adventures with them, but it did not stop me from cringing and crying on the inside.
This job is a dead-end one. There is no such thing as employee motivation here. Sometimes a thank you or a comment as simple as good work seems to be asking them for too much. Communication between management and staff is severely lacking and sometimes I wish I could just speak my mind to a few people here. Some of our employees are extremely slack; so much so that they just do not bother showing up for their shifts without any prior warning. This causes all sorts of chaos to those of us there at the time and, being such short notice, we are usually not able to replace the shift. This leads to us being short staffed and generates all sorts of unappreciated verbal abuse from our customers. I often bite my tongue to prevent myself from saying something I will regret.
Having studied business and management at university I often compare my working environment to that of what I learned; extreme difference, let me tell you. I sometimes wish I could offer suggestions or solutions to so many of the problems experienced here, but most would just take it as insult; a low-end worker telling them how to do their jobs correctly, so I don’t even bother. Despite all these downfalls, I consider myself to have always remained a loyal and excellent employee to the company. I may despise the job, but there is no reason for me to perform poorly because of it. A job is a job, and in this economic climate, I should be appreciative to be earning money.
I revert back to memories of my summer in Europe and my fondness of the USA to get me through times like this. I decide to take initiative and begin what I can only imagine to be a long and difficult process of trying to secure myself an internship or entry-level position in the USA. I hope it works.