Monday, October 09, 2006

Finally an update

I tried to update my blog on last Tuesday, but due to computer problems it was all lost. I can't really remember what I wrote then but I imagine it was just stuff about working at the Coylet Inn.

I started working here Thursday, September 28. I'm a general assistant so I do everything from waiting tables in the restaurant to serving drinks in the bar to doing laundry and cleaning the rooms. I felt pretty useless and stupid the first few days of work because I didn't know how everything was done, but now that I've caught on things are going pretty good. Most people are surprised to find out that I've only been in the country for 2-and-a-half weeks so I guess I've adapted alright. I still need some work in knowing how to mix drinks since over here they drink all sorts of weird things involving combinations of soda water or flavoured soda water and alcohol or juice. I did, however, manage to pour a reasonable pint of ale and a half pint of lager all on my own last night so I'm getting better at that as well.

I'm living in the hotel itself. There's three double bed rooms upstairs, a room with two twin beds, and those rooms are for guests. Then my room is also upstairs which has a twin bed, a dresser, a chair, and a sink. I share a bathroom with another guy who lives downstairs. My meals are cooked for me with the exception of breakfast for which I can grab some cereal or toast if I like.

The hotel is right in the middle of a mountain range of sorts. The tallest mountain in the area is Beinn Mhor at about 700 m (2100 ft). I hiked up it last week, almost to the very top where I stopped because it was so soggy that to continue I would have been up to my knees in mud. There are sheep grazing at the top of it. I was following tracks that looked like they were made by a four-wheeler so I guess that's how the farmer gets up to check on them. I've also done a shorter hill walk on another mountain, Stroncullin Hill I believe it's called, and I've been jogging along the road as well.

Despite seeing the mountains and the loch every day it still seems surreal to me that I'm living in amidst it all. I'll look out the hotel windows while I'm working and the view is entirely filled by the loch and the mountain across it. If there's not much wind then the mountain is peferectly reflected in the water. In the early morning, and often even later in the day depending on the weather, there is mist rising off the mountain. When it's cloudy the sun will poke through the clouds in really pretty, interesting ways that I can't really describe without showing a picture.

I'm pretty much isolated from the world. There's not TV's at the inn so the only news I hear regularly is on the radio or if some guest leaves behind a newspaper. I'm 9 miles from town so I've only been here on my days off. There's a bus service that goes by 4 to 6 times a day which is also outstanding to me since there's nothing like that in PEI.

I am gradually learning the nuances of the Scottish accent and can now understand the more difficult accents on some of my co-workers up to 60% of the time. That is actually an improvement ;) That also means that I am getting better understand customers with heavy accents which is more important. I am also picking up some of the lingo of course. I'm getting accustomed to calling ketchup "tomato sauce" (and it's pronounced "to-mah-to sauce" I've been told, not "to-may-to sauce" as I say it. And yet, "potato" is pronounced "po-tay-to" over here.). I'm starting to respond to questions with "aye" instead of "yeah". And I'm learning to convert all my distances into miles and to think in pounds instead of dollars, and to convert weights from pounds into stone (stone = 14 pounds so it's a pain to convert).

1 comment:

Bronwyn said...

Hey Miggy,

A fine blog ye have, aye, tis true.

Thar be great a-bloggin's about here, aye.


Anyway, yeah, school's okay; hard to say at this point. Sorry I didn't email; I will soon, I promise.

And anytime you're online you should check to see if I'm on MSN. (I usually am, as I have no life at the moment outside of sitting with my computer reading/writing. Fun times.)

So we'll hook up fo shizzle.