receptionist’s log: final edition – the lessons

Poston, Arizona. Laura Mukogawa, Beauty shop r...

Poston, Arizona. Laura Mukogawa, Beauty shop receptionist – NARA – 536653 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I officially became a summertime receptionist on  the 4th of June. I want to thank God for bringing me through to the other side 8 weeks later. Here, for your viewing pleasure, is a small list of lessons I learned from this summertime job:

  1. People have questions, a lot of questions
  2. People will ask questions I don’t have answers for
  3. I do not like not having answers
  4. This makes me very uncomfortable
  5. The Africa Mercy gets a lot of phone calls
  6. See number 3 above
  7. I am good with lists and printing forms
  8. I actually like monitoring the fire panel
  9. I particularly like talking to the duty officers via radio
  10. The last three things do not qualify me for the very important title of receptionist

This has been the most challenging job I’ve ever had. Being  receptionist on the Africa Mercy requires skills I just don’t have. A receptionist needs to be cheerful at all times. Cheerful is not an adjective I would ever use to describe myself. I believe the gift of hospitality is also a strong character trait of a receptionist. Again, a big fat zero for me.

But through this job, God has been faithful to show me I also have an issue with repressing my feelings. He’s showing me I seriously need to work on and overcome this issue if I want to do more than survive here. So even though it’s been a long, challenging summer, I have no doubt it’s been the summer I was meant to have. God does not make mistakes!

Thanks for coming along for the receptionist’s log ride!

His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20

receptionist’s log: 17 July 13

Satellite image

Satellite image (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve made it to the home stretch of my summertime job in reception! Woohoo! After today, I only have 2 more working days. Things are starting to pick up too. People are returning from their vacations. New crew are embarking to sail to the Congo. The biggest challenge I face is people showing up in crowds. I’m not good at crowd control. But the end is near. 🙂

There’s definitely excitement in the air. This Saturday, we leave Gran Canaria and sail to Tenerife. Pray for smooth seas as the channel between here and there is more shallow and more choppy. Apparently the ship rocks a good bit on these small voyages. Based on the ferry ride I had last year between Gran Canaria and Tenerife, I will need to take seasick meds.

As for all the construction. The jackhammers have stopped. The new floor is installed in the hospital. It’s green and super shiny. The new CT scanner is in and functioning. The coffee maker in Starbucks is clean and refurbished. The galley freezer and floor are repaired. The plumbing is being plumbed or something. The new wall for the new PACU got delayed. It will be finished after the ship arrives in the Congo.

Next Wednesday, 24 July 13, I will fly home to the USA for 3 weeks of family and friend fun! I’m super excited to see everyone! It’s the first time I will be with both of my boys at the same time since May 2012! They don’t know it yet, but I’m going to get a new photo of the 3 of us together. Our last photo is really awesome, but almost 2 years old. Ha! Let the packing begin! 😀

While I’m home, I hope to see as many folks as possible. We’re having a BBQ at my sister’s place on 3 August 13. Then on 9 August 13, I fly to Ft Lauderdale to go to a friend’s wedding on 10 August 13. And on 11 August 13, barring hurricanes, we’ll have another BBQ on the beach. It’s going to be a whirlwind!

Next Saturday, 27 July 13, the ship leaves Tenerife to begin the long voyage to the Congo. I sure will miss taking part in pirate watch, but I can’t say I’ll miss being stir crazy from being cooped up for 2 weeks. That’s right, I said 2 weeks! That’s a long sail!

cgnewzzOn 13 August 13, I make the long journey back to the Congo on the west coast of central Africa. I’m so excited to get back to work and I’m really looking forward to exploring a whole new region of Africa! Plus it will be my first time in the southern hemisphere! I can finally find out first hand if the water in the toilet bowl swirls the opposite way! Woohoo!

On 28 August 13, screening day! The biggest day of the year. Not only will we have one man waiting, but apparently there will be a huge crowd! It’s the first time the ship will be in central Africa. The news is travelling quickly.

But for now, I set my eyes and heart toward America! See you soon!

His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20

receptionist’s log: night shift edition vol. 2


Tonight is my last night shift for the foreseeable future. Thank God! There’s just something about working overnight that doesn’t agree with me. Perhaps it’s the fact I don’t sleep well at all during the day. Working night shift is like having jet lag without going anywhere!

After reading last night’s blog post, I’m obviously stuck focusing on what’s wrong with me. (It’s the pessimist in me) What’s wrong with me is really what’s wrong with everyone. I am a sinner, first and foremost, looking for some external thing to blame it on. I suppose sinner is the only negative label I should even consider. Instead of focusing on finding an external reason to explain the unexplainable, I should be focusing on how to change. To find a label to put on my problem is to imply no reason to change. The only thing the label does is allow me to make excuses for my behavior.

I’m not the person I could be, but I’m better than I used to be. I need to stop looking back. I need to “press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus”. (Philippians 3:14) I need to remember the people in the Bible who changed, the ones who owned their sin and repented and changed. I don’t want to see my sin and makes excuses. I want to change.

So I’m choosing to change my perspective. Again. Change is good. God is good. Life is good.

His… Michelle
Philippians 1:20