Last week was emotionally draining for me. After my last frustration post here, I decided to give it another chance. The Chef said it’s no longer possible for me to work in the patisserie because there’s too much work to be done in the cuisine. He suggested me to work two more weeks in the reception kitchen and then proceed to the gastronomic kitchen for the rest of the time left. I was not sure how happy I was with this plan but I kept it on mind, considering this option. I was trying to make it through the day, taking it easy even though we were busy doing the same thing for seven hours: arranging spaghetti inside 300 little metal rings. I had a hard time dealing with the other stagiaires as usual and then when the day finished I was told that the next day I’m working a split shift (8am-midnight), with the one very annoying guy who always trying to tell me what to do, doing the same exact thing we did that whole day, arranging spaghetti inside yet another hundred metal rings. I went out of there in tears, didn’t want to come back at all.
I was still very upset returning home. I talked to my Mom and Dad and around 1am decided to go again the next morning, give it another try, changed attitude. I couldn’t sleep that night, was very nervous and stressed, but when I had to get up I felt like I very much motivated by starting to work in the Gastro kitchen soon. I found some new powers to go to work. That morning started okayish. I was standing in the hallway cutting stripes of cooking paper. This whole time I was thinking and deliberating with myself over what to do. I spoke with Koné, my friend in the kitchen, and he told me a little more about working in the gastro kitchen. I must say I was disappointed to hear how it’s like. The stagiaires helping only with the mise-en-place and treated poorly.
After lunch we continued with the spaghetti. I happened to get into an argument with one of the girls, another one trying to tell me what to do; I was fighting over closing the freezing A.C. for a while and also the Chef was angry with everyone for poorly executing the spaghetti. At 3:30 pm I was told to go on my break and come back in two hours for the rest of the night. I came to my chef and said that I had thought about his suggestion but I don’t think I will be able to hold on another two-three weeks in the reception kitchen before going to the gastro kitchen. He was very upset, started yelling at me that I’m just a stagiaire and can’t just do whatever I want. I turned completely red, didn’t know what to do, I just took my stuff and went home.
At home I couldn’t bring myself to go back there within one hour. I called Sebastien, my school chef for advice. I was afraid he will be angry with me too but instead he was super nice and I calmed down. He encouraged me to talk to the Chef and try to stay a bit more before I leave. I called the chef and he said I can come back the next morning when the pressure will be down and speak to him. I was very relieved by that suggestion and promised to show up the next morning. I thought about continuing for a shorter period of time and how that could be a better ending for all sides.
Next morning I was at the restaurant by 9am, carrying all my things back to the restaurant. The chef took me for a private conversation and suggested the same thing: 2 weeks in reception then 5 weeks in the gastro. I then asked him if it will be possible to make it 2 and 2 instead, pretty sure he won’t have any problem with it. Surprisingly he wasn’t flexible about the ending date at all. He said I have to finish the whole period of my stage or nothing at all. He sent me home to think about it.
That day I went for a walk around Paris, thinking about it. Talked to some more people. They gave me different points of view but at last I decided I don’t want to continue another 7 weeks like this (and worse). I was fed up with being a stagiaire. I decided to end my internship that day, after 18 weeks. I wrote a letter to the restaurant and talked again to Sebastien to apologize and explain.
What am I going to do now? Stay in Paris for a while. I’m gonna invest some time improving my French, my blog, keep writing, hopefully about some more restaurants I will dine at. Paris always have something interesting to do. Also I thought about planning excursions to London and Berlin and maybe some explorations of France outside of Paris.
I’m in peace with my decision and hopefully will have tons of new interesting experiences and pictures to share with you guys.