Remember when I mentioned that there's a cookbook store near my apartment? And that one of my dreams is to own a bookstore someday? Well...
I've started a part-time job there! I'm working 4 to 5 hours just about every Saturday. It came about because I was at the store often enough that the owner asked if I was interested in helping on the weekends. An employee discount on books and kitchen stuff? Heck yes!
I have worked two Saturdays so far, and I am really enjoying it. The first day, I spent training on the computer/cash register. Today, I unpacked a book shipment and a gift items shipment and stocked the shelves. This probably does not sound particularly exciting to you, but getting to look at new books and inspect cooking things was so much fun!
Plus, it's cool being even a small part of a store that I already love. I believe pretty strongly in supporting local stores when you can, so I try to buy only things that I really have to from A.ma.zon. Yes, it is more expensive, but I don't have kids and I would like to see my money help my actual neighbors live their dreams of owning a successful business.
The physical aspects of the job are tiring enough to remind me of my days in food service. Even standing behind a counter with a stool to perch on takes endurance! I'm going to need to build up some of that. My regular job is executed sitting at a computer in a cubicle all day. I must salute everyone who earns their income by standing, walking, lifting things, or driving. Seriously, friends, well done!
On my way home from the store today, I concluded that having this job is good for my mental state. I have something to occupy me for a good part of every Saturday. It gets me out of the house and interacting with people. Most importantly, I can't dwell on my childlessness. It doesn't always bother me, but I can find a way to be distracted by it even in the midst of the busiest days in the office. It's a great change to have an activity that can so totally distract me. I spent my college days busy and fully-scheduled, with schoolwork and lots of activities. Upon becoming a "grown-up," I stopped doing all of those fun things; it's just not as easy or affordable once you're not in school! In starting this job, I feel more youthful and hopeful. Maybe it's just the novelty of it all, but whatever it is, I like it.