Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A Hostel Life

In the last year or so, having discussed hostels with people who speak English with different accents than myself, I have come to realize that I pronounce the words "hostel" and "hostile" the same way, with stress on the first syllable. People from Australia, for example, put stress on the second syllable of "hostel", so it's quite clear which word they are using. Anyways, enough of that digression (can I digress when I have not yet begun?).

In an earlier post, I mentioned three of the people that I am working with: Pat the manager, Alicia, and Alysha. I'll finish up by mentioning the other people that I work with, whom I hadn't met at the time of posting before. On cleaning duties is May, an older woman from the village that comes in for a few hours a day. On the night shift is Jamie, a young fellow from Sutherland (Highlands).

And then there is Henry. Actually there are several Henry's. I've spent a lot of time with that wee fellow, as May prefers cleaning sinks and toilets to hoovering, so when we clean together I do the hoovering (which is fine with me since I'd rather do that than clean sinks and toilets - we have a symbiotic relationship). Henry's alright, except that he manages to catch himself on every corner or doorframe that is near him.

So work involves taking bookings at reception, answering inane questions, cleaning, folding laundry (I find that oddly soothing), serving meals when we have groups book them, and occasionally in the afternoon and evening, sitting around surfing the internet or reading.

Between working some extra hours, getting outside when the sun shines, and going to listen to music and the two neighbouring pubs, I've been fairly busy. I've walked down to the castle ruins, walked across the bridge from the supermarket in Kyle of Lochalsh with Jamie one day (that's the nearest supermarket, to which you can catch a bus as well, although it's under a 30 minute walk), and walked down the shore and under the bridge as well. There's ceilidhs at one of the bars, the King Hakkon every Wednesday and Thursday, then the other bar, Saucy Mary's, has bands come in on Friday and Saturday night and traditional music on Sunday night. As Alysha #2 put it, there's only two nights of the week, Monday and Tuesday, that she has off from going out. I've been taking more nights than that, though, or else I would be really suffering from lack of sleep (oh to be 19 and energetic again!)

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