This summer, I started my first internship at Think Communications, Inc. in Pittsburgh and was extremely excited, yet nervous, to embark on this new adventure. I was ready to learn and improve; however, I did not foresee the difficulties that were bound to happen.
After I got to work on my first day, I started to meet everyone one by one. One of the last people I met pointed out that I had a leaf in my hair. I’m sure I greeted everyone else that morning, including my boss, with a giant leaf on my head. Talk about embarrassing; what a first impression!
After my remarkable first impression, the rest of the day went rather well. I was thrilled because they put me right to work. Everyone in the office was kind and helpful, and made me feel comfortable. I didn’t have any more embarrassing moments for the rest of the week, until I started my commute home.
When my first day was over, I headed the bus for home. My dad works in town, so he met me at the bus stop to commute home together. We got home without an issue, as to be expected. I was lucky to have my dad with me on the first day, because the rest of the week didn’t go quite as smoothly.
On Wednesday I boarded the bus like everyone else. I picked a front seat so I could see all of the buildings and mark my surroundings. The bus started moving, and I looked down at my phone for about a minute. When I looked up, nothing looked familiar. In a panic, I checked the bus number to make sure I was on the right one. I was. I frantically looked around trying to find a familiar building. All of the sudden, we passed one of the bridges. I was 100% sure that wasn’t supposed to happen; we shouldn’t have even been on that street. The bus then stopped and told us we would be there a while. Everyone filed off and in an attempt not to stand out, I got off too. As it was pouring down rain and my umbrella was flipping inside out, I tried to find my next bus stop. I was so lost it was almost funny. I ended up sitting in Starbucks (soaking wet I may add) as I waited for my mom to come pick me up. Talk about independence.
On Friday I got to work seamlessly. I was sure that I would be able to get the bus home without a problem as well. Third time is the charm, right? I had a great day at work, the sun was shining and I was going to my little brother’s hockey game right after work. I saw my first bus coming, so I stepped forward, directly under the bus stop sign. The bus was getting closer, so I had my ticket in hand and ready to go. The bus zoomed past me. I started to wave my hands, but of course, it just kept going. I thought to myself, “go figure” and started walking to meet my dad at our second bus stop. The bus that passed me was the last one for at least a half hour, and I wanted to make it to my brother’s hockey game on time. I walked almost two miles, got to the second bus stop with seconds to spare, and made it to my brother’s game early. After all of that, I thought I should get an award or something, but I guess that was the purpose of the blisters on my feet.
The next week, I started taking a different bus home. I haven’t had a problem since. When the original bus I took passes me, I can’t help but laugh. That bus gave me loads of trouble and a story to laugh about.
My imperfect commute home and embarrassing moments at work taught me to be patient and flexible. In a lot of these cases, there was nothing else I could do. When a bus passes you up, there’s nothing left to do but wait for the next one or walk. Standing there worked up about something you can’t fix isn’t going to make anything better.
I could have avoided the leaf-in-hair situation by looking in a mirror, but we all got a good laugh out of it. If I wasn’t able to laugh at myself and all of the things I did, I wouldn’t have enjoyed my first week as much. I was starting my first internship ever; mistakes and embarrassing moments were bound to be made. I was able to look past these difficulties and enjoy my amazing first week at my internship. I am glad that I was able to see the funny side of everything and not get too worked up over it.
-Jessica Carnprobst is a sophomore studying strategic communications. Follow Jessica at @Jess_Carnprobst.