In March 2002, I set off to offer a year of service in Victoriaville, Québec, and, in the process, created this blog to share stories. I’ve since returned many times, to spend time with the friends I made there.
so, I visited the job fair today at the illustrious Place 4213 (purely a coincidence), and made a few contacts, interesting ones. I gave out a fair number of resumés; hopefully someone will bite and get in touch with me for a job. I’ll post updates on this site when I get major news. hopefully I can find something stable that’ll give me more hours than Loblaws. 😛
oh by the way, I spent the last two days working at the Cranberry Interpretation Centre in St-Louis-de-Blandford. It’s fun being a tour guide! I get to goof around and be funny, and I get paid. It’s a lot easier than I thought. The only thing is that it’s hard on the voice (because you have to speak loudly) and it’s tough standing up all the time. I find that it’s pretty easy to run the tours in both french and english, too — I wasn’t expecting that. I guess it’s because it’s so simple — you’re really just saying the same things over and over, and then you throw in a little bit of your own colour. I take people around through a guided exhibit on the nature of a cranberry bog, how the production cycle works, and so on — and then they watch a ten-minute video, and then we go out for a hayride (without the hay) to see the cranberries being harvested out in the fields. That’s fun. I get to just say whatever I want. I mean, within reason. And I answer questions, hopefully ones I know the answers to.
Here’s a run-down: yesterday I popped by one of the local churches to attend an information session about a gospel choir. That was pretty cool. Actually, it wasn’t the church, it was the pastoral house (or whatever it’s called), right next to the church. Nice place. You can tell the Catholic Church makes a lot of money. So, anyway, that’s nice, I might be able to sing regularly this year.
Also yesterday, we had an assembly meeting, but a really phat one, the best we’ve ever had. We were united, we were organized, we discussed some great topics, we all participated — man, I’m just blown away. It was a great, great meeting. Alhamdu’lillah! It was nice to see. I hope we have some more like that.
Meanwhile, today I worked some more at Loblaws. Yay money! I’m pretty certain that I’ll have to keep looking for a job though, just as a precaution. Since I’m not part of any union, they can cut me whenever they want me to — which may be far away, but may also be within a month or two. You never know. And there has been a lot of talk about said cuts. Oh well. That’s okay. As long as I can find something else that’s phat.
Um, what else? I made photocopies. I did a pretty good job facing, too. I was pretty focused, and I’m becoming more efficient all the time.
so things have been going well at work so far. I’ve been averaging around two to three errors a day. not bad for someone with absolutely no experience! it certainly is challenging. I’m practically learning from the ground up. on Tuesday I learned how to face. that means “arrange items nicely on the shelf”, and how to operate the cardboard press, and how to use those little movable stairs. on Wednesday I learned how to use the service elevators and the garbage compactor, and the importance of hair nets. Today I learned how to face again (apparently I hadn’t gotten it quite right the first time), and how to restock the shelves. I’m feeling more and more like a stockboy! woohoo stockboys! oh yeah and my feet are killing me. At least I can guarantee that I’ll be getting some exercise. Now I need to make sure I keep doing those curl-ups and push-ups in the morning to get me going.
In other news… wait, there is no other news. I’ve been cooped up inside a Loblaws all week. what the hell.
We had a conversation about religion in the lunch room (which scared away several people) wherein two people were batting each other about over concepts of religion, particularly the Catholic faith. I can see why some people don’t like to talk about religion. It’s kind of like bashing two bricks together. Religion is treated like any other commodity — just pick a brand name. And if you don’t like any brand in particular, mix and match them to get something you like. I’m always pretty saddened when I see that. I believe that religion is the greatest constructive force in the world, and has always been. What’s that you say? It can also be the greatest destructive force? Yes indeed. I won’t get into the whole logical argument, since it’s getting close to dinner time, but the fact is that religion has simply done a lot of good. There are a lot of good religious people who live pure, happy lives, and do great, amazing things for the betterment of the world. There are also people who miss the point entirely and use religious ideology to gain power, money, prestige, and so forth. Worse even, there are people who corrupt religion by putting forth their own biased views of religion as the gospel, inalienable truth. What’s the difference between the good and the bad? Here’s a simple answer, take it with as many grains of salt as you wish: The good people are inspired by God and seek to follow His will. The bad people ignore God and go by their own opinions as to what’s important. Make sense? This presupposes that God is the source of all good. Can we accept that? I can. But let’s talk about it.
whoa it looks like my whole family is gonna come and hang out in Victoriaville for a day tomorrow. what the! that’s pretty cool. Uncle Ralph is going to come up from the States, and the rest of my family is going to come over from Ottawa, and we’re going to hobnob and not speak french. I can guarantee there’ll be Loblaws jokes too, because Uncle Ralph always used to make jokes about Loblaws. Ralph is funny. All my dad’s relatives have a pretty good sense of humor. I’m just sorry I haven’t gotten to know them that well.
Oh yeah I have stuff to do today. maybe I could hang up my laundry right now. the washer just finished. and then I need to get one of my spark plugs changed. I mean my car does, not me. I don’t have spark plugs. See, that type of humor is definitely inherited from my dad’s side of the family. It’s really esoteric and full of non sequiturs and sometimes just consists of things that other people would look at blankly and wonder what the joke was, whereas you’re telling it and rolling in the aisles. I dunno. Spark plugs. Hmmm. That reminds me of the time that Monsieur David F. related a joke that ‘Abdu’l-Bahá told, and everyone who heard it just looked at him blankly and wondered what the joke was. I guess you had to be there. Eventually I got it, and it was funny. But if you want to hear it, you’ll have to ask me in person.
know what’s cool? there’s a spring nearby where you can get fresh, cool, clean water. I’ve never seen that before. I guess that happens more often when you live next to a mountain. do-it-yourself spring water is good.