I know where I want this blog post to end up, but I’m not entirely sure how to get there. I guess what I mostly want to say is that being at Our Chalet rather forces me to be a better person.
Like probably a lot of people, I’m quite lazy about a lot of things. I tend to leave things all over the place and if I don’t do things straight after it’s been decided they’re necessary, I procrastinate until I actually forget I was going to do them at all. I’m also a bit rubbish at eating. There are more foods that I won’t eat than ones that I will, and I will often straight up refuse to try things. Or at least, that’s what I’m like at home.
And to some extent, what I’m like in the staff house. Our living room is kind of hopeless, and I have a fair amount to do with that (sorry guys). In the Main Chalet though, if you don’t do the things you’re supposed to do when you’re supposed to do them, either they don’t get done, somebody else will have to do them, or you’ll have to do them tomorrow or the day after. The first option is bad because we all tend to find it quite distressing when, say, the dining room floor needs a good sweep, or the boot room is full of mud. Life is better when the Chalet is clean.
The second option is also bad because it’d be so incredibly unfair to leave things unfinished for the others. They wouldn’t do that to me and I’d feel far too guilty to do it to them. So those two options are out. The third is also a no go, because if you’re going to have to do it, you may as well do it now, as opposed to a couple of days later.
Yesterday, there were seven of us working and the others (I was on reception) finished everything really really quickly and then set about seven rooms that we would otherwise have had to sort out today. And as such, we had a lovely relaxed day today because there wasn’t nearly as much to be done.
So I’m a lot better about doing things when they need to be done and picking up after myself. Admittedly, there were two days where my thermal was sat on the table in the Great Britain Room, but there were no guests, so we don’t talk about that.
The other thing that I mentioned is food.
At home, I mostly eat rice and bread, and various kinds of meat. And then pretty much nothing else. Trying new things would generally make me panic quite a lot too. Food was quite a big worry coming here, and I wasn’t sure if I’d end up eating enough to cope with the programme and such.
It was pointed out to me the other day that when I first got here I almost looked like I was about to cry at meals. Spag bol, chicken carbonara, rōsti and alpine macaroni were all foods that I wouldn’t even have considered eating. Now, while I still really dislike alpine macaroni, my favourite meal here is rōsti, which is grated potato with cheese on top, and we usually put bacon in it too. Before coming here, I wouldn’t eat potato or cheese.
My parents were here this past weekend, and one of the nights we had chicken carbonara. I didn’t eat pasta because I thought it was slimy, and I would never have been willing to try the carbonara sauce. I don’t eat the vegetables in it, but I’m happy to eat the pasta and the chicken and sauce. My parents didn’t comment on it at the time because they figured they should probably treat me like an adult about it. They did text my sister though, and got a text back that mostly just said “!!!!!”. Which tells you a fair bit about the situation.
I’m also a lot closer to being happy to try new foods now. I used to completely freak out, but now I’m willing to put things in my mouth and then either eat some more of it or drink lots and lots of water. I can’t speak for anybody else, but I think that being here has done me a great deal of good. Yay.
Spring Volunteer (UK)