Thursday, May 11, 2006

Work -- do you love what you do?

Went to a function last night after work with one of our Luxury Cruise partners -- it was for top producing travel agencies, with over $1M in sales for the line. Very swank, very lovely. Four of us from the office: the owner of the agency, and the three top agents. Now, I love what I do: creating vacations for people, which is a fine balance between fulfilling dreams and sales, is actually creative and fun. I'm lucky that I don't do a lot of the "sun destination" packages; I do all complex kinds of things, and I focus on adventure, exotic destinations, South Pacific, Africa, South America, and luxury and adventure cruises. My job is to make people happy, to give people their dream. It's sometimes a form of psycho-therapy; sometimes it's drudgery; sometimes we get assholes like the clients I fired after five years. But then we get the honeymooners who are all starry-eyed, or this brother/sister -- he's been off fighting terrorists, and she's here in the states, and they're meeting for a two week holiday in a lovely destination.

And the lovely part of my work is that I've been able to live one of my passions! I love to travel. And I've been able to do so, I've been able to go to some extraordinary places, do incredible things, all because of my job. Now, I admit to having a fantasy job: in my dreams I am an anthropologist, (skipping all the hard school part) and I am documenting exotic cultures, making an award winning film about some lost culture. In a way, I think I'm living that dream.

So I wonder: how many of us really love what they do? What are your jobs, and do you love your work? Would you change? Do you have a fantasy job? Are you living your dream? (Alicia, I know you are!)


DBK said...

I like what I do.

If I had known you were a travel agent...Mrs DBK and I are leaving for France tomorrow night. 6 days in Provence and 4 in Paris. We put the thing together ourselves. We have two days of cooking classes in Provence and plan to hit Cannes when the film festival starts.

DivaJood said...

You and Mrs. DBK have a great time in France! The two days of cooking classes might be a highlight.

In Cannes, there is a lovely little restaurant, the name of which escapes me, that serves a traditional Provencal Rock Fish Soup that is amazing. Little bit of roux, subtle flavor, oh, fantastic.

Cannes for the festival, envy is dripping out of every pour in my body. Full report upon return, please, hotels, cooking school, festival!

Sue Woo said...

Well wee wee!

I love my job! I am a Social Worker. That doens't mean I push food stamps. I am my own boss, I see clients for therapy, supervise visitation for families who need it, take a schizophrenic shopping (if she's med-compliant. WHen she's not I won't take her because that girl is MEAN!) I need a vacation though.... I'm thinking the Galapagos.....

DivaJood said...

Sue, you work with kids a lot too, don't you? It seems that your job can be very gratifying AND very frustrating, and sometimes all at once. The Galapagos are always a good idea (no, wait, that's Paris).

Alicia said...

Well, Jood, you're right - I am living my dream, and I've lived it all my life. Of course, I'm always broke, but other than that, I really do feel I'm the luckiest girl alive, And not just because I play music for a living. It's because I have my family, my sobriety, my faith, my friends, and I derive a good deal of fulfillment from trying to do what my conscience asks of me. I feel lucky that I can appreciate what I have instead of whining about what I don't have. That's what keeps me at peace with myself.

Sue, I applaud you - my mom was a social worker for the State of Florida for 35 years, and I know what that kind of work involves. One reason I admire my mom is that she had a Barnard education that could have taken her to any number of high-paying fields, but she chose social work because she felt that it was the best way she could be of service in society.

That's a real-ass liberal for ya - the kind that I hold up as my model. She walks the talk. You can take your 'compassionate conservatism' and stick it where the sun don't shine.

DivaJood said...

Alicia, your mom sounds like a great lady. It's funny, I think of myself as the luckiest woman alive and for many of the same reasons you list: my sobriety, my faith, my family, my friends. I get to be a worker among workers, show up and give my employer a dime for his nickel, and I enjoy what I do.

As for compassionate conservativism, that's another way the current Fascists have twisted language.