Bite Size Memoir Number 6: First Jobs

© irene waters 2014

© irene waters 2014

A kitchen hand at the community cottage hospital was my first job. I dislike kitchen work immensely so I wasn’t well-suited to it but it filled in the time between finishing school and commencing my nurse training. My task was to prepare the vegetables, peel the multiple potatoes, carrots, beans and chop the onions. The cook taught me efficient ways of doing all these chores but it didn’t relieve the monotony. Twice a week I covered the evening meal as well as lunch. Sometimes I had to cook scrambled eggs for the night meal. One evening, thoroughly bored , I thought it would be amusing to add green food colouring to the scrambled eggs. I tried it first and it tasted okay but it almost cost me my job. Neither was my mother pleased when her porcelain stained green.

About Irene Waters 19 Writer Memoirist

I began my working career as a reluctant potato peeler whilst waiting to commence my training as a student nurse. On completion I worked mainly in intensive care/coronary care; finishing my hospital career as clinical nurse educator in intensive care. A life changing period as a resort owner/manager on the island of Tanna in Vanuatu was followed by recovery time as a farmer at Bucca Wauka. Having discovered I was no farmer and vowing never again to own an animal bigger than myself I took on the Barrington General Store. Here we also ran a five star restaurant. Working the shop of a day 7am - 6pm followed by the restaurant until late was surprisingly more stressful than Tanna. On the sale we decided to retire and renovate our house with the help of a builder friend. Now believing we knew everything about building we set to constructing our own house. Just finished a coal mine decided to set up in our backyard. Definitely time to retire we moved to Queensland. I had been writing a manuscript for some time. In the desire to complete this I enrolled in a post grad certificate in creative Industries which I completed 2013. I followed this by doing a Master of Arts by research graduating in 2017. Now I live to write and write to live.
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26 Responses to Bite Size Memoir Number 6: First Jobs

  1. joannesisco says:

    No one appreciated your artist heart trying to assert itself 🙂


  2. Let me be the first to ask…..did you serve ham with those green eggs?


  3. Lisa Reiter says:

    Fantastic! At least it wasn’t blue. I admire you for ‘creatively relieving your boredom’ ! (Though I can see why your Mum didn’t)😄


  4. mewhoami says:

    Green eggs. Sounds great to me. 🙂 We had green eggs and ham in school once, as a class project.


  5. Glynis Jolly says:

    I’m not a fan of kitchen work either, at least not the preparation and cooking part. Believe it or not, I don’t usually mind cleaning up after a meal. 😉


  6. LOL. I went straight from school into nursing. I wouldn’t recommend that to anyone. I think you need some life experience before taking on such a job. But that was how it was back then. Funny thing is my mother had a job in a nurses home waitressing which is where she met my father. 😀


    • I agree. Although I had the three month job I was an innocent when I started nursing and it was somewhat confronting to say the least. My grandmother also worked in a hospital’s kitchen side of things when I was little when we were in Sydney on holidays we would go and pick her up at the hospital.


  7. Loved this story. Green eggs and ham! One of my first job attempts was as a waitress…it lasted until I poured hot coffee in a customer’s lap. It was an accident but the owner of the cafe, how do you say it, fired me!


  8. ittymac says:

    My first job was at a dime store. I was 16. Since my last name, my maiden name, was Sweet, the manager assigned me to the candy counter!


  9. LOL What a cruel manager but so perfect.


  10. Sherri says:

    Haha! Oh I loved this Irene and also the photo of you, great stuff! I can just see you putting that green food colouring in the eggs and thinking ‘why not?’ and then your mother’s face too…wonderful shared memory, thank you 😀


  11. Pingback: First Jobs | Lisa Reiter - Sharing the Story

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