Guests frequently (as in, every day) ask me these three questions:
- Where are you from?
- How long have you been on Iona?
- What are you going to do when you leave?
The first question is straightforward, or at least you'd think so. You know I'm from Australia. It really should be obvious that I'm Australian. I'm pretty Australian after all. Guests do not realise this. The British ones think I am from America and the American ones think I am from England. You cannot win.
The second question is rather more complicated. You see, after I stayed with Liam in Edinburgh, I went to volunteer with the Iona Community on the Isle of Iona. I was a housekeeper (my mother finds this hilarious) for three months and I had a really good time. By the end I didn't want to leave, and I probably wouldn't have had I not been looking forward to VidCon, but as it happened I bundled all my stuff together and got on the ferry. I thought it would probably be years before I ever set foot on the wee pebble again.
Then VidCon happened and I went to visit my sister afterwards. I thought everything was going pretty swimmingly because I had applied for a job I was feeling confident about happening in Glasgow but then it fell through! What was I going to do? I didn't have anywhere to live!
That was when I saw on Facebook that my friend and old line manager Becki had an 'interesting knee'. Later on I found out that meant she had a nasty infection. I offered to go back to Iona and help out, so I was designated Mac Housekeeper Cover and ran the housekeeping side of things for three weeks until Becki recovered. I didn't know I had this lined up until I was actually in transit back to the UK. I don't recommend doing that.
During this time I applied for a resident post on the island, which meant if I got it I would live on the island for the duration of my stay in the UK. I had my interview while I was on Iona and then finally got the job.
And that's how I came to live on Iona. I don't tell that whole story to guests though. Usually I just pretend like I've been here the whole time. I'll be here until February of 2013.
The third question is sort of annoying because honestly I have no idea. Will I apply for my UK ancestry visa and move back here? Will I travel to South Korea, braving the prospect of nuclear war to teach English to children? Will I travel to live and work in Canada?
Or will I settle back in Australia? Where? On the Gold Coast again? Or Brisbane? Or somewhere else like Melbourne? Will I study? Will I find a job?
So many questions.