I know, I know, I couldn’t be later if I tried! The holiday period was a time to relax, and then suddenly when my life started again, I was completely overwhelmed. Excuses, excuses!
The start to 2015 has been an eye opening experience for me, where I juggled having an essay due on the 2nd, with embarking on a training course that will hopefully open doors to a new career. However, the reason that 2015 started with a bang, was because 2014 most definitely didn’t.
I was lucky enough to spend an entire month in the amazing New Zealand in January/February last year. Considering how close NZ is, I couldn’t understand why I had never been before. Everywhere you look, there is something breathtaking to see. Sure, they don’t now the meaning of summer, and I most definitely did not get myself a summer tan, but I saw and experienced so many things that still make me happy just thinking about them.
My first two weeks were a road trip of the North Island with my Dad, where I saw everything from Hobbiton to Glow Worm Caves to a stunning sunset over Auckland and a private guided tour around Peter Jackson’s collection of WWII planes. The second two weeks I joined a gAdventures tour of the South Island and made some of the best friends I could ever ask for. I pushed my limits with a 13km hike through Abel Tasman, exploring the ice on Franz Josef glacier which included my first every helicopter ride, the Shotover Jet in Queenstown, seeing the stunning scenery around Glenorchy on horseback where scenes from Lord of the Rings were filmed, and being the only ones kayaking on Doubtful Sound.
While I can’t deny that I had an amazing trip, part of the reason I took this trip was because I had the prospect of eons of spare time to kill as I hadn’t been successful in gaining employment. Like so many other university graduates, I found that no one wanted to hire someone who had anything less than 3-5 years experience.
I spent the first half of 2014 applying for any job that mentioned ‘graduate’, ‘engineering’, ‘materials’ or ‘science’ to no avail. I don’t even want to think about the number of company profiles I read, and cover letters I wrote. I had some bites, and a number of interviews, but ultimately, those with more experience won out over the enthusiasm and passion of youth.
I then changed tack and applied for everything that was either vaguely related to something I had experience in, as well as anything that claimed ‘no experience necessary’. After a disastrous ‘opportunity’ where I was offered working hours from 6:45am to 8pm for no pay, I knew I needed to try something new.
Come July, I found it! I landed myself a tutoring job at a local tutoring centre and could not be happier. I have built up a wonderful group of regular students and I genuinely look forward to going to work each day. When I realised how much I loved teaching, I looked into ways that I could potentially turn it into a career. This is when CELTA came to the rescue. I had been considering doing some sort of TEFL or English language course since my early days at university, and now suddenly I just knew it was my best option. I smiled from ear to ear after I was accepted.
Throughout my long period of unemployment after finishing university, I felt that my curiosity was not being satisfied and I wanted a challenge. I wanted something that offered me freedom and flexibility, but also opened my eyes to new fields and different ways of thinking. This is when I found MOOCs. I took on a couple of MOOCs and loved them but decided I wanted an even greater challenge. So I started an online degree in arts. Originally, I had thought of pursuing ancient history, but I’ve actually found I really enjoy politics and philosophy too. It’s early days, so I don’t have to decide just yet. It’s also amazing not having to attend lectures and listening to my classes in my PJs whenever the mood strikes.
I feel like my life stagnated in 2014. I had one horrible date where the guy was a bit too touchy feely for having only met five minutes ago, and I was turned off guys for months. However, something I am rather happy about is that I managed to maintain my weightloss. In 2013, I lost just over 10 kilos after my then boyfriend and I broke up. I felt miserable in myself, and hated my appearance, so really put my time into becoming healthier and happier. During 2014, I managed to keep off the weight, and feel far happier in myself. Maybe this year, I will also find myself a guy worthy of my time.
So that was my 2014. Sorry for the long post!
Hopefully 2015 will bring some new challenges, and maybe even a chance to see some more of the world.