My blog is about the scenic, stressful, spectacular life (and everything screwy in between) of a
California girl turned expat transplanted to the land down under: North Queensland, Australia.

September 05, 2010

Always something new.

I got a job. A freaking job! Seven days in Australia and I’m already part of the workforce. Suck it, American economy! On Wednesday I had my husband stop inside the popular town bakery because, well, I’m fat and I wanted a pastry. So I got a..sort of…cream puff with apple junk in it (SO GOOD!!!) and the lady at the counter asked about my accent. We started talking and I half-jokingly asked if they were hiring. They were. So the next day I dropped off my CV (resume), and by the time I got home and walked in the door my father-in-law tells me, “hey Hed the bakery’s on the phone. They want to set up an interview”. Oh. Wow! That was fast!

My husband dropped me off at the bakery and tells me, “this won’t take long. It’s just a small town interview. I’ll wait in the car”. I have a chat with the owners and they start filling in my name on the roster (schedule). I ask, “uh, does that mean I’m hired?” and they laugh and formally ask me if I would like to work for them. Oh. Wow! Okay! It’s only casual (part-time), but I’m relieved it is. I know nothing about working in Australia. Is everyone laid-back at work, too? What if the townspeople don’t like me because I’m a foreigner? What if I just plain suck at it? I keep telling myself that I’m only the front salesperson, it’s not brain surgery…right? My poor husband was outside in the car for 90 minutes, by the way. So much for a short interview!

7601095 See? I work on this street. Small town, huh?

I went to the local uniform shop and ordered mine-and it’s all hot pink. HOT PINK! MUAHAHAHAHAHAHA! And it set my mum-in-law back like $200 (thanks mum, totally owe you one). Picked up my work shoes, and I have to say, I know they are “work shoes”, but I have been forever stifled with wearing dressy black non-slip shoes because I was a manager, and my servers had cool black tennis shoes. So when I saw BLACK and PINK work tennis shoes, I was like “HELL YEAH!!!”

V  Suck it, Applebees.

I start Monday. I’ll let you know how I go…wish me luck!

When we got home, my mum asked me if I wanted to go driving before we went to the store. It’s an unbelievably muggy, humid day. Like 99% humidity. I’ve never felt anything so gross and sticky. Anyways, I was like “yeah, sure. Anything to get me out of this house and into some air conditioning!” So we drive down this road I haven’t seen before, and she pulls over and is like, “Ready?” Huh? I’m driving? Oh. Wow! Okay!

We do a Chinese Fire Drill (I taught my mum a new term today lol) and I’m in the driver’s seat. On the right. On the left side of the road. WTF? We start out on straight roads as she’s teaching me what “give way” means and the rules for them (why aren’t there just “STOP” signs? You do a rolling stop at those, too!), and I’m having to look right to make sure I’m not going to hit oncoming traffic. And the indicator (blinker!) is on the right, and right is up and left is down. The first time I go to use it I turn the windshield wipers on. Oops. And my dominant hand is my right hand, so when I shift and drive it’s my right hand I use. Now my left hand is getting some driving action. We hit some curves on empty roads and finally hit the main streets. We stop to parallel park a few times (totally awkward-my depth perception is way off) and drive around in traffic, and I talk her into letting me drive up Towers Hill. It’s the big viewpoint of the town, and it’s all loopy and curvy and a small road. I freaking aced it. We both lived! Yay!

Image213 I took this shot at the top. It’s proof!

Mum drives down the hill and we go to Woolworths (it’s a grocery store in Australia. Weird, huh?) for some last-minute grocery shopping (remember everything is closed on Sunday. Weird, huh?) and she says I get to cook dinner tonight. Oh. Wow! That’s a BIG DEAL!!! Yes, American food and Australian food is the same, but comfort food here and comfort food in the States is still slightly different. And I’m extremely picky (remember?), so I know how cautiously some people are when trying a new recipe. I made a Hungry Girl recipe for chicken roll-ups. It’s pretty simple, just chicken breasts, ham, and soft cheese rolled up and then baked. I added new potatoes and as we speak it is being cooked. (I have to master potatoes-after the scheduled finished cook time they were still really hard!) So…my next paragraph will be a) if it was good or not and b) if my in-laws enjoyed my food. My mom raised me to really be hard on myself as a cook. If it’s not fantastic it just ruins my day. So stay tuned………

100_2244 Hey, I ain’t no food photographer!

*drools* it was SO GOOD! I even brought out the Ranch I bought today for my potatoes! I took a bite and said “I’m home!” as I wiped away a tear and saluted the American flag. (No, not really.) Got a thumbs up from the father-in-law and plates were clean at the end. Oh Wow indeed! *pats self on back*


  1. Sounds like you are already fitting in well, a proper Aussie lass. You go girlie! I think this may be the best thing that ever happened to you.
    And PS I HATE humidity myself. Gooey hot, sticky--and is it going into summer there now?

  2. Nope, it's the beginning of Spring. Fun fact-seasons start here on the first of the given month, not like our 21st. So yep, welcome Spring!