The local guy she was with ordered her one shot of Jäger, and a pizza. She took the shot, and then nodded politely as if if to say “that would be a satisfactory way to get hammered”. Later she came up to pay for the two items with her debit card. I hand her the two receipts, her card, and a pen. She immediately tosses her card on the bar, and shoves the papers back into my hand.
In a tone completely devoid of flirtation she says with a suddenly heavy accent “This is my first time.”
My brain turned this phrase over and over, eventually deciding that she was speaking about tipping. I became concerned that this was her only chance to have her first time with some inconsiderable American experience. I hope she had a good time.
There have been enough developments in my life to warrant another catch up. I wanted to move from waiter to bartender while in Louisville, and I am happy to say that I am now a bar manager. Skipping steps is acceptable because it is more money. I am looking forward to put in the work at my place of business to help it thrive. I have thousands of ideas, and four of them are good. Let’s see how I do.
I also had planned to begin working on my photography. I bought my first dslr upon landing, and am pleased to have already sold three pictures, which technically makes me a professional photographer. It is exactly the arbitrary landmark I needed to get the juices flowing on this project. I am starting at the bottom, and enjoying every new thing I learn and beautiful image I capture.
My lease is until February, and I still have many things left to do in this city, but the recent boost in funds means that I will likely be leaving here sooner than I would have ever imagined. This forces me to begin laying a foundation for my 2018 plans.
I want to get paid to travel. And while I would be content if it was digging ditches in Cambodia, I have reached the point in my life where I feel as though I can reach for more. I intend to assemble my best writing and photography, and begin pitching the idea of being sent to Guyana for what I suppose one would call journalism. Entering a new foreign land with the objective of capturing a slice of their life, packaging it in a medium, and then being paid for doing so is the dream. The form that idea takes will surely change by the time it becomes reality, but I will continue marching forward until I am a professional traveler.
I will succeed, it is just a matter of time. Until then, I need to just stay on point.