Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Solitary Confinement.

It is 5:00am, and I am trying to sleep. I have work in 7 hours. It's Summerlicious,and I am about to work my first service for the event. But I cannot sleep. I have all sorts of thoughts flowing through my mind....

A year ago, I was fresh out of high school, enjoying the summer by sleeping in and having bonfires in Phillip's backyard, only occupied by the dreams I had of liking a girl I hardly even knew and the excitement of starting college. A year ago, I was different. A year ago, I thought I was mature, that I knew what love was, that I was already a good cook. I thought I had myself all figured out. I thought I had life all figured out. I thought I was going to go to college, and show off my culinary skills and be better than everyone. I thought I was already a somebody because I had some experience in the industry and most people out of high school didn't. A year ago, I worried, but didn't really have anything to worry about. A year ago, I would have never imagined myself today.

One year later, I have two semesters of culinary school under my belt. I now live right in the heart of downtown Toronto. I work in a historical district, in one of the more busy and well respected restaurants in the city. School was much more difficult than I imagined. I did turn out to be one of the better cooks in my class, but that is just one class among many. I have learned that most people in college aren't straight out of high school. Alot of them already have work experience. Alot of them already have been in the industry for a long time. One year later, and I have grown. I know more than I ever have, and my naivety has changed.  I have met all sorts of people. One year later, and I already have both foot in the food industry. I have already started my career; the occupation that I will do for the rest of my working life. And I love it. I have recently been promoted to line cook, and I am proud of that achievement.

But in just one year later, I am isolated. With the exception of Jordan, the last time I was any of my friends was 3 months ago. I only see my family once every couple of weeks or months. I work all day, and when I am not working, I am in my apartment doing something on the computer or sleeping. When I wake up, it's work all over again. I drink two packs of Redbull a week. My roommate is never here. For whatever reasons, I do not know, but he's always back in the suburbs. I do not have a love life. I do not have a social life. Only an occupation. I thought I would meet that one special girl in school or in the city, and it would be like love at first sight. But I now realize I would actually have to put myself out there in order to meet somebody special. I am living in the solitary confinement of my own life. My decisions and my interests have put me here. I realize that as I grow successful in my career, I will eventually lose most of my friends and whatever social life I have. It is not like this for other cooks, because other cooks aren't like me. However as I come to my realizations, I have decided that I might be content with the path I am on; that I could be happy with my prison....and that scares me.