“A travelogue is a story of a person who leaves home to achieve a successful journey and comes back to the starting point after suffering all kinds of adversities and gaining something else that has not been expected.”
- Kim Young-ha, “Reasons of travel”
I am not a person who innately mingles with new people in unfamiliar environments. I wish to have a repeated and stable lifestyle. However, my job as a wallpaper installer requires me to work in a new environment every time my clients change. It is a repetitive cycle where I work for them for one to two days or for three months and move to other sites. I take different paths for commute, face new surroundings and new people on the site and install different wallpaper products in houses that vary structurally. The job of applying wallpapers on the wall does not change but all the other things do. When I sometimes work three months on the same site, I may get used to the place but it does not often happen as I have to leave for another site soon.
However, here is one thing that is always true on every site – I go through change in any way after each project is finished. This gives a newbie wallpaper installer an opportunity to grow – by which means that I can become more skilled at the job per se but learn how to cope with new environments and adjust accordingly such as how to memorize directions for an unfamiliar site without a clear address, my behavioral guidelines to stay confident in a group of new people and a mindset ready for any unexpected situations. Adjusting myself to new environments may be a bigger part of my work than visiting new places every time.
I do not know in advance where and when I will be requested to work. I sometimes get a call on short notice to visit a different region next morning. I cannot ask why I was not notified earlier nor if I can rearrange the schedule. All I have to do is pack in a hurry while hoping to learn something else on a new site.