Monday, 23 May 2016

The Worst Part About The Best Job

When I was younger and I used to religiously watch the reality show "Big Brother" there was always a part of it that baffled me.

 I mean, Besides the obvious of why would someone shove a wine bottle inside themselves on national tv.

No, What baffled me was the eviction process.  A group of people in a confined space all day everyday, talking, laughing, crying, drinking etc. Everything they did they were together. Then each week, one was plucked from that world and thrust back out into the real world. 

What always baffled me was...why do the other contestants cry when one of the others is leaving? 

The contestants would talk of how close they were, how much they bonded, how well they knew each other etc.

But I never understood how people could get so emotionally destraught after knowing someone for such a short amount of time.

I never understood it until now. 

One of the greatest things about working on a cruise ship is the sheer plethora of people from all walks of life that you will meet. It's almost overwhelming just how many different people you can meet in a short space of time. 

But something that people don't realise is just how much time you can spend with a person you meet on a ship.

When you are at sea, you can't go anywhere. You can't just wander off and go to town. You can't just hop on a train and get away. No, you are pretty much stuck on that ship with the same group of people for the duration of yours or their stay.  Essentially you are in your own floating big brother house.

It's in this time that something beautifully complex can happen.

With the sheer amount of time you can spend with somebody, combined with how little space there is to actually be away from them, you can form an incredibly strong bond with someone after knowing them for a short space of time.

You work and live within the same confinements so you can end up seeing the same one person throughout the majority of your day. 

I have never shyed away from forming connections with people, in fact if somebodies conversation can stimulate me intellectually and challenge me, the likelihood is i'll stick around and want to connect with you. 

I have never in my life experienced anything quite like the connections I have created whilst having this job. 

There are people that have come in to my life in the recent past that have meant so much to me that I can't see a future without them there. 

And so, when it comes to the end of a contract for either you or the person you have connected with, the hardest part ensues.

The goodbye.

It's in these moments that I finally understood why the contestants on big brother were seemingly so destraught at one person leaving the house. 

Saying goodbye to someone you have shared so many intimate details with is always going to be hard, regardless of how  long you have known them. 

But for me it will never be a goodbye.

It's always a "See You Soon". 

I like to think of this ship as a world of its own.

It exists within the real world without really existing. Sailing from one part of the world to the other, breifly touching reality and letting it's inhabitants experience reality to then withdraw them all back in and move on.

A world floating on the waters of the world.

But it's my world. It's not real but it's all I have right now. 

And so when one of my closest connections in this world is thrust out into the real world, it's heartbreaking. 

Hence why it'll always be a "See you soon".

See you on the flip side. See you in the real world.