A flirtation with my career

As I am a month and four trips into my new job (using ‘job’ for want of a better word here; awesome life experience being a bit wordy), I figured it was time to share a little insight into what I have gotten myself into.

To sum it up, I’ve decided that its like a real life version of 50 First Dates – that old-school rom com with Drew Barrymore and Adam Sandler. If you haven’t seen it, you should probably stop reading this and watch it (then pick up on this post again, obviously).

So. I rock up to the Station Building to greet a bunch of walkers. I’m armed with a list of names and an outfit I’d rather not wear on a first date. Like any first time, I’m faced with high expectations and a decent dose of unpredictability. Its my goal to charm these guys, make sure they have a good time and stay safe doing so. Easy, right?

Five days and 53 kilometres later I’ve won them over, had a few laughs, exchanged contact details. The dream first (multi-day) date! I jump off the coach, wave goodbye, take a breath and bounce up to the next group to do it all again. As I said, 50 First Dates.

Like any budding relationship, there is a lot of give and take. I give my walkers chocolate when they’re tired, hot drinks on the Pass and a bit of foot love in the evenings. And then there’s the take. I take their photos, their dinner dishes; I even take their packs sometimes.

On reflection, I realise this may well sound like the worst date job ever. But I love it. Humans are awesome. My computer was not awesome. The outdoors blows me away. The office was hiding me away. I’m constantly on the look-out for whio (blue duck); I used to keep my eyes peeled in anticipation of typos.

Sure, I have to strip beds, serve at the bar, be up at the crack of dawn. But this is what I want to be doing right now. My grass is pretty fricking green right now. What’s more, its dotted with Mount Cook Lily and sundew.

So if my career really is just a string of relationships, then I’m pretty happy to be staying in this one for a while.

Anna Watson