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The Coolest Travel Intern

October 8, 2009

I recently came across a call out from an adventure travel company based in Toronto, Gap Adventures. It was a witty blog posting from the CEO Bruce Poon Tip, asking applicants to show him why they think they would make the best intern. It is a three month internship in Toronto. Airfare is taken care of but it’s up to you to find somewhere to live. Being 23 with the world at my fingertips, I thought it would be an amazing experience, and who knows what could become of it after the internship is up. So I applied.

I decided to share with you my essay on why I believe I could be a perfect fit for the job:

There is no doubt about it, that I am the perfect fit in your company as the ‘coolest travel intern’. I am young, full of energy and potential, and hope someday to have written about experiences I have had all over the world. I love working and learning new things, and will never give anything up without giving it my best effort. ‘Working smarter, not harder’ is one of my favorite motto’s in the workplace and I am always looking for ways to streamline and simplify existing routines. My day planner is my life, and while I pride myself in having a great memory, I still may not survive without my ultimate organizational tool. I consider myself to be outgoing and make friends easily and never turn down an opportunity for fun and adventure. I believe these are the perfect combination of traits needed to be your right hand (wo)man. In case that wasn’t enough to convince you, I’ll rewind the tape a little and let you see they key things that have shaped who I am over the years.

I hail from the small town of Rocky Mountain House, Alberta, located in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains (clever name for the town isn’t it?). I was raised an only child by my two parents who often argued over who passed down the wit and charm and good looks I possess today, or wait, maybe they argued over who was ‘weirder’. I avoid this argument as I believe they are equally weird and am happy I didn’t end up with that gene. I happen to consider myself highly unique and perhaps a bit eccentric at times, but never weird.

Growing up I spent my time writing whimsical stories about the characters in my head. English was always my strongest and favorite subject in school, despite never being fond of the strange teachers. I swear they were never the one to influence me the most. You know, most kids have one teacher that leaves an impact on them, I promise it was never the weird English teachers. As I aged, my wondrous stories of fantastical times turned into lines of rhymes as I filled many books full of poems. My parents often had a hard time keeping the supply of notebooks stocked as the ideas flowed from my brain.

I had thought high school should be my time to explore and experience new things (don’t worry, not THOSE kinds of things). I was a fan of playing touch football, and thought attempting my hand at rugby would be a good idea. It turns out rugby is much different than football, and I never did grasp the object of the game. I realized that running around, yelling about who knows what, not really sure where to go or what to do wasn’t much fun and I suddenly wasn’t so sure I wanted to continue on with this sport. My decision was finally made the day someone had their finger bent in a way fingers shouldn’t be bent. Sports were not my thing, back to the notebooks for me.

My fondness to join the working force led me to be known locally as ‘the movie girl’, as I provided my exceptional customer service, computer, and cleaning skills to both the local theatre and video store. Simultaneously, I followed my love of writing, and approached the local newspaper for my work experience program in my last year of high school. I was given the chance to be a reporter and injected a little of my spunk into the weekly paper for a full semester. It was one of my best accomplishments being able to see my name published and having the chance to share my thoughts and stories with the town.

Upon graduation at the ripe age of 17, my parents hustled me out of the house and to the nearest small city, Red Deer, to attend college for Business Administration. I was sad to learn there weren’t really any red colored deer anywhere near this city, but found a new love in marketing and event planning. I went on to major in marketing, and while deep in my studies, found time to write music and concert reviews for the college paper, as well as an online publication. I then decided to jump into my own event planning and began organizing small local concerts at various halls in the area, featuring bands from all over the Western provinces. It was then I learned how easy this planning stuff had come to me, and knew that someday down the line I could use these talents on a larger scale.

The sad day came when the party life, I mean student life, had to end and it was time to get out and find a real job. I was hired on at the local credit union, and after 6 months of dealing with the worst customer service job on earth, I found myself in a cozy office working as an administrative assistant, preparing mortgage documents and miscellaneous other tasks assigned to me by my new family. During this time, I incurred a new nickname, the ‘Superstar’. I believe some days I hear my boss referring to me as a god-send, and spend countless hours listening to my coworkers’ concerns as to the state of the department if I were to leave. I do assure them that since my arrival, I have worked hard to streamline all procedures and have kept detailed step by step guides, complete with pictures on nearly all duties I’m responsible for. This often leaves my boss speechless and blown away by my swiftness and efficiency with the various computer programs. Not included in the how-to guides are the frequent runs to Tim Horton’s though. I am confident they can make it there, but I may need to document everyone’s orders so Susan doesn’t end up with Crystal’s Chai tea with milk, and Elissa doesn’t end up with Susan’s coffee with two creams. It can get confusing. My time spent with the lovely ladies of this department has also taught me to understand the language of ‘boss’. It can be a tricky one, but I think I’ve mastered it and know exactly what she’s looking for and often have the task completed before she’s done explaining. I’ve become a master at decorating through all of the different holidays, and could nearly be certified to teach the generation above me how to work computers.

This brings us to present day, where I find myself ready for a new adventure. After small trips to Hawaii, Las Vegas, Arizona, California and New York City, I am itching for more. My dreams for future travel include Japan, Greece, and Montreal (I’ve been dying to have some poutine there.) I also have a strong desire to explore the rest of this great country I live in, having not been any farther east than Drumheller, home of the dinosaurs!

Hopefully after that brief history you can be assured that I do not come with any ounce of weirdness. I am ready for any challenge you throw at me, and promise to complete any task to the best of your ability. I have a great dodgeball arm but admit you may want to put me on the opposing team for volleyball as I’m not very good. I have mastered the notion of nodding when someone thinks they are right, but will most likely roll my eyes as I walk away. I am ready to open a new chapter in my young life and hope that chapter can be describing to my readers how awesome my new boss Bruce is. Just be careful, you might not want to send me home after three months…

Keep your fingers crossed for me!

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