Saturday, September 10, 2016

My First Post

I am writing these days because I find myself in a new chapter. I have been very fortunate in my career as an international restaurant consultant. I climbed the corporate ladder for a couple of restaurant chains. I have been to countries I never dreamt of visiting, and enjoyed food that has opened my heart and expanded my palate. I have one habit when I travel. Upon arrival at an airport, I first look for postcards. My godson, brother, and better half all have some of my most insightful journal entries on a postcard. Thank you for allowing me to share them with you now.

Today we shared a beautiful day in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The day came with some pleasant surprises and great glimpses into the local psyche. This is the part that I love most about traveling, meeting the people, enjoying some conversation, being served with their pride (usually in the form of food and drinks; though today that included football), and seeing the goodness in humanity. Truth is - there IS hope!
Reason we traveled to Ann Arbor, MI

The situation in my career changed recently and I am currently working as an independent restaurant consultant. My passion is fueled by food and seeing how food brings people together. Since I can't exchange food with you directly here I would like to share with you some insight.

I think the biggest challenge I foresee is Fear. Fear of failure, of being unable to meet my financial needs, of the stall in my career, of... of.... of too much. I typically ignore my fears. That is not a part of my "gut" that I like to listen to. I plan to focus on where I can make a difference.

I worry about what other's will think... but aren't we conditioned that way, to wonder what everyone else is thinking? A philosophical question for another time. The truth is, I worry about what certain people will think: my mentors, my close friends, those whom wish to see me fail. I think I will ignore that worry as well, remove my Facebook app for 10 days and turn off notifications to others so I am not bombarded with feedback. I like feedback, quite a bit actually. I believe criticism is how I grow as an individual and a professional. It is just better to be prepared for that and have my "Wonder Woman Underoos" on for that moment.

I don't like having an excuse of time. I am, however, a creative spirit that tends to be unorganized when juggling different items. I'm a restaurant operator at heart. We like chaos. Thrive in it, really. I have this preconceived notion that to make a number of business ventures work at once it must all be super organized. I am working on organizing myself ahead of time to eliminate as much chaos as possible.

If all that scares me, then why do it? The ability to visit new places, eat different foods, and meet the most amazing of people. Today, my better half and I enjoyed Ann Arbor. We were here for a football game where my UCF Knights played Michigan. I know, most of you may have no clue who UCF is and why we seem to have the audacity to come out to The Big House. I was braced for tough Michigan fans and lots of booing. I close this day remembering the cop who ensured we were all safe crossing the street. He shared with us that his daughter is starting the search for colleges and wants to be in sunny weather. He asked us about UCF and living in Orlando. I remember the fan dressed in
Snickers Nuggz | HopCat Ann Arbor, MI
full football gear (pads and all) who genuinely welcomed us to his stadium. I am grateful for the smile he shared in that moment. The fans who sat around us made it a point to shake our hands as they departed and comment that we have a great team. I appreciate the kind Uber driver who shared some great stories. I laughed thanks to the big, fat squirrel that actually made me stop a conversation and say “Squirrel!” The Snickers Nuggz that we enjoyed at HopCat were the perfect blend of sweet and salty (who said you can’t have dessert for an appetizer?).

It was a beautiful day, one that makes me believe I can do this.

Thank you for reading. Until Next time.

This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 1

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