Catching up on Farmers Markets, summer….

Training Day 1 complete! I can already tell she’ll be a great co-op.

As I transition back into freelancing and new girl transitions into the Globe, I am being less bittersweet and more confident. This is going to be a good, new change.

I start, basically, the day after I leave. I’m covering a farmers market.

I love famers markets. So lovely, fresh, green. People walking around in sun hats, kids walking around in bare feet licking ice creams. The one in my home town offers homemade empanadas as well as fresh-picked strawberries. I like the infamous Haymarket in Boston, too, though that’s less wholesome and fresh and more…Haymarket.

For non-Bostonians, buying something at Haymarket is equivalent to buying a carton of milk that expired yesterday. It’s probably fine today, and will probably be okay tomorrow, but after that it’s a fifty/fifty shot between okay and diarrhea.

Ah, well. I’m exaggerating. Either way, this isn’t like Haymarket. This is a small town market squeezed into the library’s front lawn. This is a market full of fresh fish and ripe tomatoes and all-natural soap.

I love farmers markets. Such a lovely atmosphere full of hard working craftspeople and farmers.

They’re pretty introvert unfriendly, unfortunately. The whole idea is making conversation, approaching people, bartering. I always feel a bit bad when I enter a tent and then don’t buy anything.

Perhaps, like how I dreamt yesterday about the Introvert Boutique, it would be nice to have an Introvert Farmers Market. Though, I suppose that would just be Whole Foods or some other supermarket.

I’m just being silly. I’m excited for summer, I’m excited for farmers markets and sundresses, I’m excited to get back into my favorite version of journalism.

Really though, I’m excited to have more time free for writing and blogging, especially with Camp Nanowrimo coming up. Anyone out there a nano-er?

If not, check it out my friends: https://campnanowrimo.org/sign_in

 

Also, this is my 200th post. Thanks for reading:)

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Lucky and busy

I’m lucky. I am. In the dying field of journalism I’m getting work left and right…in fact, too much. I always feel bad when I have to cancel something or decline an offer, but it’s sometimes necessary in order to assure the work is the highest caliber it can be.

Sometimes it’s hard to remember I’m lucky.

I covered a fashion show this morning, to be written by the end of the week. I just accepted an offer to cover a meeting on Thursday due on Friday, on top of a graduation ceremony I’m covering Friday night. Not to mention the two other stories I have to get done by next Tuesday.

I also have to get back on track with German, and figure out a plot for the D&D campaign I’m supposed to run Monday. Not to mention the fact that I had planned on doing Camp Nano in July, and I haven’t even begun to think of a novel idea!

Busy is good, but also overwhelming. Being lucky is good, but also brings guilt. I wish I had more time to read Life of Pi and ride my bike and play ukulele and finish my TV shows, but at the same time I’m glad I am using those things for fun when I can, rather than to halt boredom. It’s better to want to do something than to do something so much it’s boring.

I am glad I’m taking these assignments, because they only take a few hours out of a week and give me money I can use for the things I like, not to mention experience.

Like I said, it’s hard to complain when I know I’m so lucky. Lucky to be doing well in a weakening, overcrowded field, lucky to be able to live with my parents this summer without worrying about rent, lucky that we live so close to Boston, lucky that all this has worked out.

I think back to this time last year—I was a line cook at Chipotle. I worked eight hour shifts rolling burritos and wishing I were somewhere, anywhere, else. However busy I get, I have to remember that I like my job, and that’s rare. I don’t groan when I have to go on assignments; I love it. I don’t even whine when I have to wake up early in the morning. I like my job, however busy it makes me. It took awhile to settle on that fact, but it’s true: I like it. One day I will find the ideal balance of work and life. One day I will know myself better and know exactly how much I can handle. Maybe today is not that day, but as of now being busy is okay.

I mean, hey. It’s better than rolling burritos at Chipotle.

Roam

When all I can say is repeat what’s been said

It’s hard to believe that the words in my head

Are anything worthy to write or be read

Perhaps I should focus on running, instead.

For who reads newspapers half a day old?

The company’s heart’s barely beating, I’m told

Surely my paper and life’s work will fold.

What could be better than hitting the road?

Making the stories I’d once been reporting

The future, the past, and the present distorting

What would mom say if she saw me resorting

To running and laughing and shameless cavorting?

As it turns five and of course I head home

The sky is an ominous gray monochrome.

I wonder which parent gave the chromosome

That gives me the hesitant instinct to roam.

Grin and bear it

Whether due to my introversion, my stage in life, or my Americanness, I’m a generally independent person. I don’t like when I have to depend on other people for something, especially when they don’t do it right.

Unfortunately, a lot of journalism is depending on other people, specifically when you need interviewees to call you back. They hardly ever do, and never when you need them to, but I hate bugging people by calling back multiple times.

How are we supposed to deal with situations that go against our very nature? My job depends on me being a dependent extrovert who doesn’t mind annoying people. How am I supposed to do that?!

I don’t know. I’ve been doing this for a long time but I don’t have any tips for it beyond “grin and bear it.”

I had to get used to calling people until they answer, to making small talk with them, to depending on interviewees and editors and photographers. It’s strange to work on such a big team, where you’re responsible for a small part and other people take care of the rest. It’s strange to have to pretend to be extroverted.

Grin and bear it. I’ve heard that phrase two ways, “Grit and bear it,” and “Grin and bear it.” I prefer grin, because it fits more situations. Everyone knows how to grit and bear a sore back or traffic or an annoying boss. You’re allowed to be externally frustrated with these things. But some things you have to bear without letting it show. People in retail or the service industry have to do this all the time. Grin and bear it. Don’t let out your frustration yet, don’t let it show.

So, I do that too. I take a deep breath, set my jaw, and dial the phone for the thousandth time, knowing I’ll get sent to voicemail and knowing that I’m probably being annoying and looking forward to the part of the process where I get to sit down and write the article without any more phone calls.

Luckily, it gets easier over time. I no longer pick up the phone, dial a few numbers and hang up out of nervousness. I’m getting better at depending on and trusting others. It may always be hard to act like someone you’re not, but it does help you grow in the long run.

Keep on grinning, my friends, and we’ll get through it together. After all, it’s possible that someday that grin won’t have to be faked.