Sta ja ovdje uopste radim?

Naredno jutro ustajem u 7h, idem na doručak i u smjenu, zatim na trening, pa opet na trening, pa opet u smjenu. Nakon prve smjene sam se pokušala na brzinu javiti roditeljima, ali veza je bila loša pa sam morala malo glasnije pričati. Cimerka je bila u sobi i nakon razgovora je grubo otvorila svoju zavjesu i vjerujte mi da pogled može ubiti, ne bih sad o njoj pisala. Poslije više nije sa mnom ni pričala, a ja pored toga što sam se osjećala nevidljivom i trudila sam se da budem nevidljiva, da je slučajno opet ne uznemirim. Kroz par dana mi se obratila da provjeri kada ću se konačno iseliti iz kabine. Bila sam malo razočarana njenim ponašanjem jer nisam ništa loše uradila da bi tako pričala sa mnom. Tih prvih dana niko me nije mazio i osjećala sam se loše i nebitno.

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Svi naredni dani mi liče ko jaje jajetu. Ustanem, radim, završim prvu smjenu, dođem u kabinu, cimerka me ignoriše, ležim u krevetu u tišini trudeći se da i ne dišem, zatim opet radim drugu smjenu koja me dokrajči. Misli mi razne naviru i pitam se „Zar sam radi ovoga došla, zar je ovo ta velika avantura koja me čeka?!“ Hvata me depresija i hoću da dam otkaz i da idem kući. Posao još nisam naučila, a svaki dan nešto novo radimo. Postoji puno pravila i procedura, a pored čišćenja moram donositi led, voće, peškire, trčati po hemikalije, šampone, čaše i mnoge druge stvari. Nisam nigdje izašla danima i sve me živo boli. Noć prije dok sam trčala da napunim hemikalije, pala sam na stepenicama i sva sam bila u modricama. Zovu me na vakcinaciju u medicinski centar i u stanju poluraspadanja odlazim kod nasmijanog doktora koji me pokušava oraspoložiti. Taj dan sam sva sretna zaključila da ovdje ipak ima i normalnih i nasmijanih ljudi. Naredni dan mi objašnjavaju da će se održati vježba spašavanja i da je moja dužnost da ostanem sa velikom sestrom i da nakon narednog alarma odem na otvoreni deck i stanem ispred čamca za spašavanje sa rednim brojem A3. Alarm se oglasio oko 10 sati ujutro i nastala je frka na brodu. Nisam imala pojma gdje, šta i kako i jedva sam uspjela naći otvoreni deck. Tu sam stala, a neki Filipinci su mi rekli da se prijavim jer su već prozivali moje ime dva puta. Prijavila sam se i moja prva vježba spašavanja je prošla bez većih problema. Velika sestra mi je kasnije objasnila da će se ovo održavati svake sedmice i da će se moje dužnosti kasnije promijeniti.

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Tih prvih sedam dana definitivno su bili najgori dani. Nemoguće je opisati sve emocije koje osjećate u tih sedam dana. Posao, treninzi, neukusna hrana, hladnokrvni ljudi, bolovi u nogama i mišićima, osjećaj usamljenosti, izgubljenosti i izolovanosti. Kabina u kojoj spavate je hladna i tamna bez prozora, a jedina svjetlost jeste vještačko svjetlo od kojeg vas samo glava boli. To su prelomni dani kada svi žele najradije dati otkaz i pobjeći nazad kući u sigurnu zonu.

Ipak, nakon tog prvog šoka sve kreće na bolje. Za par dana sam dobila svoju prvu napojnicu od 70$. Gledajući u tih 70$ razmišljala sam kako sam za samo tri dana čišćenja zaradila 70$ od samo jedne sobe, a to nije čak ni plata. Znači, to su te napojnice koje sobarice dobijaju i zbog kojih platu nikad i ne troše. Uskoro sam počela izlaziti van, jesti redovno, snalaziti se na brodu i upoznajem prve prijatelje. Sve mi postaje bolje i lakše i počinjem se osmjehivati, zezati i prilagođavati tom intenzivnom tempu. Prva luka u kojoj sam izašla je bio gradić Hanflouer u Francuskoj gdje se održavao Festival normandijske kulture. Nakon sedam dana provedenih u limu, prvi put sam kročila na svjež vazduh, popila kaficu sa prijateljima na suncu, kupila razglednicu i punim plućima uživala. Tada sam konačno dobila osjećaj da se nešto mijenja u mom životu. I da sve ovo i nije tako loše i da stvarna avantura tek počinje.

Kad sam se vratila na brod, još jedna dobra vijest. Obavijestili su me da mijenjam kabinu. Konačno ne moram više živjeti sa gospođicom Austrijom. Prebacili su me na deck 2 i sada živim sa curom iz mog odjela u „četvrti“ u kojoj žive sobarice. Moja nova cimerka je Marie sa Mauricijusa. Marie je sjajna žena, u životu se mnogo napatila, ali danas je tu jer želi osigurati bolju budućnost svom sinu. Kao malu ju je biološka majka ostavila i kasnije opet otjerala. Izgubila je oca i nikad nije završila srednju školu. Udala se, rodila sina i razvela. Žena koja mi je to prvo veče nasula čašu likera Bejlisa, sjela prekoputa mene i dala nekoliko pametnih savjeta kako preživjeti brod. To je žena koja ujutro pjevajući ustaje, kojoj osmijeh sa lica ne silazi i koja sve radi sa lakoćom. Velika promjena od svakodnevnog gledanja nečijeg namrgođenog lica do njenog uvijek nasmijanog i prijatnog.

Ono što sam uspjela primijetiti do sada jeste da su većina posade Filipinci, koji su uvijek nasmiješeni i veseli. Ali, sa druge strane, njihovi ugovori traju po devet mjeseci i imaju mnogo nižu plaću od ostatka posade, što znači da su u startu diskriminisani i u gorem položaju od drugih. U mom odjelu ima dosta cura sa Balkana, zatim iz Južne Amerike i iz Azije i veliki broj djevojaka iz Južnoafričke Republike. Uglavnom dolazimo iz siromašnijih zemalja sa visokom stopom nezaposlenosti, Bosna i Hercegovina, Srbija, Hrvatska, Makedonija, Rumunija, Mađarska, Portugal, Brazil, Indija i druge zemlje. Naravno, ima tu i inžinjera i oficira iz zemalja Zapadne Evrope i Amerike, kao i ljudi iz menadžmenta hotela koji imaju sjajne plaće i kratke ugovore.

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Naravno, primijetila sam i da me muškarci gledaju, ali su me već upozorili da su mnogi oženjeni i da uglavnom svi traže samo avanturicu. Svaki put kada nova djevojka dođe na brod, bez obzira na njen izgled i ponašanje postaje lovina i ukoliko to želi bez problema će naći nekoga. Prvo, jer su većina posade muškarci, drugo što će biti u centru pažnje dok god je dostupna i treće što svi nakon posla traže način da se opuste, a taj način za mnoge najčešće podrazumijeva alkohol i neobavezni seks.

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Sazetak “Ploveci morima”

Koga jednom opere more – taj više bez njega ne more. Davno sam čula ovu izreku, ali tek kad sam digla sidro i zaplovila shvatila sam njeno značenje. Dvije zanimljive godine sam provela radeći na luksuznim prekookeanskim kruzerima i spojila ugodno sa korisnim. Posjetila sam zemlje na pet kontinenata i postala bogatija osoba, proširenih vidika i sa vječitom željom da istražujem ovu divnu planetu Zemlju na kojoj živimo. Kada kažem bogatija osoba, tu ne mislim samo na materijalnu stranu bogatstva, nego na sve ljude koje sam upoznala, zemlje i kulture koje sam vidjela, uspomene, sjećanja i emocije koje ću pamtiti do kraja života.

Photo by Matheus Guimarães from Pexels

Moja priča nije samo priča o lijepim stvarima, već je to priča i o borbi, diskriminaciji, načinu prilagođavanja, konstantnog pritiska, učenja i mukotrpnog rada, nekad i do 14 sati dnevno, bez ijednog slobodnog dana, između četiri, šest i više mjeseci. U trenucima kada me uhvati nostalgija za uzbudljivim brodskim životom, sve ove loše stvari nestaju. U glavi mi je samo bijela lađa, zvjezdano nebo na sredini okeana, zvuk talasa, miris soli i vjetar u kosi.

Zajedno sa odlaskom na brod, počela sam pisati blog o svemu što mi se dešavalo dok sam plovila svjetskim morima. Blog sam napravila radi porodice i prijatelja, jer je bilo mnogo lakše objaviti kratki članak gdje su svi mogli pročitati gdje sam i kako sam, nego svima ponaosob slati emailove ili odgovarati na poruke na facebooku.

U međuvremenu, kolegica koja radi u medijima javila mi se sa željom da napravimo jedan intervju o mom poslu, pa je priča o meni objavljena u najčitanijim dnevnim novinama u Bosni i Hercegovini.

Zahvaljujući internetu, društvenim mrežama i blogu, od tog trenutka pa sve do danas svake sedmice mi stižu poruke od osoba iz svih dijelova regiona koje su zainteresovane da dignu sidro i otplove. Trudim se odgovoriti svima jer sam svjesna da je nezaposlenost u našoj zemlji ogromna i da mladi ljudi traže bilo kakav izlaz. A taj izlaz kao i ja, mnogi vide u odlasku na kruzer. Svojim pustolovinama sam inspirisala nekoliko dragih ljudi i prijatelja/ica da krenu mojim stopama i danas rade za različite kompanije i plove različitim dijelovima svijeta.

Photo by Simon Clayton from Pexels

Nakon dvije godine intenzivnog brodskog života odlučila sam objediniti svoja iskustva u ovom priručniku čija je osnovna svrha da olakša put mladim ljudima i da im pruži jasniju sliku o tome šta ih čeka ukoliko se odluče da odu na kruzer. Vodič se sastoji iz četiri dijela.

U prvom dijelu se nalaze sve relevantne informacije kako doći do ovog posla, pravila i procedure.

Drugi dio je baziran na blogu i prati period od odlaska pa do kraja trećeg ugovora. Pisan je u formi dnevnika. Opisuje posao, ljubavni i društveni život na brodu, zabave i izlete za posadu, zemlje koje sam posjetila i goste koji su mi ostali u sjećanju. Opisane su sve emocije koje su me pratile tih prvih mjeseci i sve lijepe i ružne stvari koje su mi se dešavale.

Treći dio obuhvata osobne priče osoba koje su radile na različitim pozicijama i za različite kompanije, dok četvrti dio sadrži kratki riječnik najčešće korištenih engleskih riječi i izraza na brodu.

Želim da se zahvalim svima koji su mi pomogli da moj blog postane knjiga, a moji doživljaji postanu doživljaji svih vas. Svima onima koji su me pratili od prvog dana i pružali mi podršku i ohrabrivali me. Želim da se zahvalim prije svega svojim roditeljima i bratu koji su me finansijski i psihički podržali da podignem sidro i zaplovim u nepoznato, a potom i da napišem ovu knjigu. Želim da se zahvalim i svom prijatelju Miljanu Kenjiću na korisnim savjetima i razgovorima koji su me ohrabrili da se okušam u svemu tome. Zahvaljujem se i Dini Kamerić koja se pobrinula za lektorisanje knjige. Na kraju se zahvaljujem svima koji su na bilo koji način učestovovali u pisanju i izradi ove knjige.

Knjiga ce uskoro biti dostupna na blogu.

After a While

After a while you learn the subtle difference

Between holding a hand and chaining a soul,

And you learn that love doesn’t mean leaning

And company doesn’t mean security,

And you begin to learn that kisses aren’t contracts

And presents aren’t promises,

And you begin to accept your defeats

With your head up and your eyes open

With the grace of a woman, not the grief of a child,

And you learn to build all your roads on today,

Because tomorrow’s ground is too uncertain for plans,

And futures have a way of feeling down in mid-flight.

After a while you learn

That even sunshine burns if you get too much.

So you plant your own garden and decorate your own soul,

Instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.

And you learn that you really can endure…

Than you really are strong,

And you really do have worth.

And you learn and learn…

With every goodbye you learn.

Author: Veronica A. Shoffstall

I loved this poem since the first time I read it. I like to think about it as a poem about a relationship with life, rather than the poem about a love relationship. In any case, each time I read it it makes me smile.

How to enjoy your job even though it is not something you wanted to do?!

“Look under your feet. The great opportunity is where you are. Every place is under the stars. Every place is the center of the Universe.”

Do you often think that somehow you just can’t find your way?! You don’t know what is your dream job and what is your passion while everyone around you is telling you that you have to do what you love, otherwise, you will not feel fulfilled?! As per many different research you are not the only one. Many people don’t like their jobs, but they still have to do it to be able to survive, support their families and pay their living expenses. And there is nothing wrong with it. However, even if you are stuck with the job you don’t like it doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to be miserable or unhappy. Furthermore, you know how they say “do the best you can with what you have, where you are“.

Photo credit goes to @kaboompics

So how exactly you can still enjoy your job although it is not something you wanted?

Firstly, you would need to change your mindset and instead of thinking how you are going to survive one more day from the “nightmare” think about it as something that you just have to do, a part of your daily routine. Try to see it more positively – maybe you will meet new people, learn or hear something new that might open you some other doors in the future.

Secondly, you are not your job so find time for your hobbies, sport or social activities after working hours. This will give you more motivation to finish your work so you can go and enjoy something you like. Now, don’t tell me that you don’t have any hobbies as that is just impossible today with so much choice. I have lots of different interest, however the hobbies I always go back to are yoga and blogging. Currently, as I spend more time at home due to Covid19 I do lots of walking and I am part of a book club with my friends so we can exchange our thoughts about different books. I have also decided to invest more time in my blog in the next 6 months, so these days I am spending lots of time reading, studying and exploring the internet.

Photo credit goes to @dpopbes (taken from Pexels)

Thirdly, try to find a higher purpose in your job. Maybe, your company is providing some products or services that are useful to the wider community. Maybe, you are an inspiration to somebody and you don’t know it. So try to be nice to people you work with and most importantly never take things personally. I have noticed that many times the problem arises as people start taking things too personally or they get offended and change their behaviour based on their feelings.

Finally, you have to believe. I love the following quote from Churchill: “There comes a special moment in everyone’s life, a moment for which that person was born. That special opportunity, when he sizes it, will fulfil his mission – a mission for which he is uniquely qualified. At that moment, he finds greatness. It is his finest hour.” This quote gives hope that one day we will find that special thing we like to do. In the meantime, work on yourself and your skills. Read good books, educate yourself, listen to TED talks and podcasts, follow inspiring people, do online courses. Try to keep up with new technologies, learn new skills, find yourself, mentor, study a new language, volunteer, help someone, meditate, and socialize with people who take out the best from you. And one day, sooner or later your time will come to shine. And all the hard work, invested time and hurdles will eventually pay off.

Stay safe everyone, and use your time wisely. 🙂

Kathmandu Wedding Bells (Part I)

I honor the place in you where the entire universe dwells. I bow to the place in you that is love, light and joy. When you and I bow to our true nature, we are one. My soul recognizes your soul. We are the same, we are one. I honor the place in you that is the same as it is in me.

So much love and peace and meaning behind simple Namaste!

I had Nepal on my bucket list for quite some time and mostly because of the Himalayas. However, as I still don’t have enough money, stamina and courage to visit the base camp (I have no interest in climbing the summit and ending up frozen across the mountain like 200 other bodies found until now) I decided to opt for free drinks on the wedding of my work colleague in Kathmandu. I was also attracted to Nepal because of it’s people who are one of the most peaceful and welcoming people I have ever met. In Dec I have received a beautiful red invitation written by the hand of his uncle. The tradition in Nepal requires the oldest family member to invite the guests and his uncle was the eldest. The wedding was planned to last for 2 days with the first day being the most important one.

So here we were, 6 of us, flying in small Fly Dubai Boeing, drinking beers and looking forward to this “cultural” trip. On 24th of Jan 2019 for the first time in our lives we have touched the ground of Tribhuvan International Airport in Kathmandu. If you have Bosnian passport like me you can get tourist visa on arrival which costs 25$ for 15 days. Before passport control you are required to fill in “arrival card” and after that you need to visit the airport kiosk and fill in the online form. After you fill the form, the kiosk will give you a little paper and with that paper you will go to cashier to pay for the visa. After the payment you will proceed to the passport control and immigration. If you are lucky (and I am obviously not!) you will go through it fast. Otherwise, you will end up 1 standing 1 hour in a line waiting for deadbeat officer to ask you questions like “When you were born?”, “What is your name”, “Where are you going?”. Finally after this torturing we were outside the airport trying to avoid taxi scammers. Our friend told us to look for registered stand and to negotiate the price before so we followed his advice to get to the accommodation. We booked little hostel Peacock close to Patan Durban Square. During the taxi ride I spotted the tangled electrical cables, dirt, crazy traffic which is so typical for Asian countries and I could still see the consequences of 2017 earthquake.

Tangled Electrical Cables

After a long 45 minutes, we have finally arrived at our destination. Peacock has 7 rooms in the offer and they are not made for people taller than 1.60 cm. However, they were a super cute mix of old and new, wooden rugs, electrical blankets, gas water heaters, and coffee machine, hence I was ready to live like a hobbit for the next 4 days.

In the evening we went for dinner in a probably overpriced, nearby restaurant where I ordered traditional dish Dal Bhat (“dal” means lentils and “bhat” stands for rice) and mulled wine. For beer lovers, I would recommend ordering 650 ml beer Mt. Everest which does justice to its name. After the dinner, we went for a walk around Patan Square built in distinct Newar architecture style which is a mix of woodcarving, stone, brink, and brass craftsman and belongs in the list of the highest achievements of humankind (I read that somewhere). Around the square, there were so many little streets and pathways with cute cafes, rooftop bars playing rock silently, Hindu temples, and stray dogs.

Peacock Hostel

By midnight I was in bed, but all my hopes for a good night sleep were flushed down the toilet. I could hear people shouting, moving house, the dog was barking and as soon as I closed my eyes I could hear my alarm buzzing. At 9 am the driver picked us up and took us to the groom’s house were we have received with a warm welcome and attention. Most of the women were dressed in red sari’s because red is considered to bring love and happiness to the newlywed home, so if you are not sure what to wear to Nepalese wedding you will not make mistake with red dress or any other detail.

Funny fact: I have left my mobile phone in my husband’s car and only figured out when I was already at the gate. And as one of my friends said I was “shamelessly taking photos with my big iPad for the next 4 days”.

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