TWELVE Tips to Help You Succeed in Life:Part Seven
TIP SEVEN: ALWAYS EMBRACE NEW OPPORTUNITIES
N.C. College is the most popular—and only—college in Neopia Central. In fact, the initials 'N.C' stand for 'Neopia Central'…you know, for those who weren't able to figure it out in the previous piece and complained that N.C. was never properly translated, thus resulting in a swarm of pointless questions for the poor sap who decided to write up MY personal Tale of Woe up for a few extra NT trophies.
Anywho, Daisy-May showed me around the circular campus first, pointing out benches, trees and other boring stuff. Then she showed me a giant topiary sculpture of a Chia that stood right in the middle of the campus. "This was created last year by the Gardening Department students," Daisy-May explained.
I craned my neck to admire the Chia's smiling face. "I think I read about this in the NT," I said. "But why did they decide to make a giant Chia? Why not something cuter…you know, like a furry Petpet?"
"Hmm, I think a wealthy Chia funded the project," Daisy-May explained. "I don't know for sure, though."
We entered the college and walked down a long, dark hallway, our shoes tapping loudly on the shiny white tiles. Occasionally we passed a lit classroom, and Daisy-May would greet a classmate or teacher or whoever else we'd meet while trudging down this seemingly endlessly hallway. I was getting pretty bored of walking until we finally approached an open door (at the end of Neopia's longest hallway EVER) and Daisy-May led me inside. All the desks were arranged in a giant circle, with only around seven of them filled with students, many of whom were either bored or beginning to fall asleep. Daisy May sat next to a grey Grarrl and smiled. "How was your day, Gary?" she asked.
Gary shrugged. "Everything was fine until this happened," he said, pointing to a light brown stain on his grey hoodie. "I swear the coffee they make at the cafeteria hates me. It's either too cold or too hot that I accidentally spill it on my clothes."
"Well, I know the perfect solution for coffee stains," Daisy-May insisted. She then turned to me and—as if she temporary forgot I existed—introduced me to her classmate. "Gary is a whiz at philosophy," she explained to me.
"Ooh, how interesting," I said, accidentally sounding like a sarcastic jerk. "You know, I used to be in philosophy class when I attended here, too." For the sake of my reputation, I didn't mention that I dropped out of the class after three days because I was bored to snores.
"You attended the N.C. too, Nadine?" gasped Daisy-May. "Wow, it really is a small world! What year did you graduate?"
Now I was cornered, like a Negg the Meerca Chase Meerca was zooming towards before it hit the corner and the game ended. I knew by just sitting in the classroom that everyone else was taking their college days far more seriously than I ever had. In fact, I betted to myself that every one of those college dorks already had their futures lined up and were just credits away from achieving their high-salary careers while I'll be stuck earning minimum wage until I decide to paint myself Elderly to initiate an ill-prepared retirement. Yep, I knew my beans were going to be spilled, and this time I was NOT going to blame the wind for the catastrophe of picking up scattered beans. But luckily for me, my short-lived melodrama was cut short as the professor—a red-haired green Draik named Ms. Evergreen—entered and began the lesson. I drew a sigh of relief: I was SO happy that, at least for now, my 'college secrets' were still kept secret.
"Now class, let's begin by discussing our favourite books," instructed Ms. Evergreen.
Everyone went around, talking and gushing about their favourite stories. Daisy-May happily talked about a book of Faerie-tales she adored, and Gary admitted his love for a book about two baby Shoyrus exploring their backyard. When it came to my turn, I thought hard and then said, "The Usuki Collectors Guide was a fun read because it talked about Usukis and had lots of fun tips about maintaining doll collections. I also liked reading Faerie Tales: Cloud Nine because the main protagonist had to sacrifice so much to get her own cloud! I was so moved!"
Ms. Evergreen peered closer at me, adjusting her glasses. "Nadine, is that you? I haven't seen you in a while! How've you been?"
"Uh, I've been...fine, I guess." I tried my hardest to be polite, but my nerves kicked in and I couldn't help but feel anxious—especially when I considered the others were listening intently to our conversation. So I kept my response blunt and smiled weakly.
The lesson for the night was about the use of nouns and other grammar stuff, so it's not something I would narrate for my readers. Instead, I would skip forward to the interesting part that happened at the end of class. After Ms. Evergreen dismissed us, Daisy-May introduced me to a blue Cybunny with a brown ponytail. "Her name's Lucy. She and I are in a lot of classes together this semester!"
Lucy laughed. "Only because you were so desperate to stick with me!" she teased.
"Hey, don't you work at the Plushie Palace?" I asked. The memory of my last trip to one of my fav shops—which was over a month ago—gave me a fuzzy feeling inside.
"I used to work there with my cousin Cassie everyday," said Lucy. "But I've had to quit last month to focus on my nursing studies." She shrugged. "Oh well, at least my leaving means somebody else can take my place."
"Oooooh, is the position still open?" I asked hopefully. "Because I need a new job and working at the Plushie Palace would be SO MUCH FUN! And the plushies are so cute that I just want to buy all of them and cuddle with them all day long!"
"I think Cassie has a position available," said Lucy, "but working there is rarely a picnic. There are customers to tend to, boxes to unpack, plushies to price and shelves to stock—"
"All that stuff sounds like the typical shopkeeping stuff," I said breezily. "As long as I don't need to deal with struck-up parents and annoying little kids, I'll be a-okay!"
Lucy giggled. "Can you handle baby pets? They can get pretty cranky if they're tired."
"Of course," I said, nodding confidently. Then—to avoid Ms. Evergreen, who looked as if she wanted to talk to me for some catching up reasons—I followed Daisy-May and Lucy out of the classroom, continuing my boasting of all my special talents and how wonderful I would be as a Plushie Palace employee.
And sure enough, my job interview with Cassie was as easy as eating a slice of pie! Cassie asked me a lot of questions, some serious—my previous work experience, days I would be available to work—and others more light-hearted (Like 'What's your favourite plushie?' and 'If you could be any plushie, which one would you be and why?') My main impression of Cassie was a positive one: she was bubbly, sweet, a lover of laughing and snorting, and she was a talented baker! I mean, who else would bring a basket of freshly baked shortbread cookies to a job interview?? "I love baking for everyone I consider hiring," Cassie explained after I devoured half of her jam filled cookies. "The sweets always cheer up those who don't have what it takes to work here."
Of course my first reaction was to scream that I was a thousand times better than any of the other possible applicants, and that my entire life depended on getting this one particular job because of my deep love of super soft plushies! My second idea—the one I actually stuck with—was to wait silently as Cassie continued her 'you tried your very best' speech, hanging on her every word and also imagining myself in a happier place and time, far away from this agonizing moment of woe. Lucky for me, however, my melodramatic time period (it was really only 1.5 minutes long) ended and Cassie proudly proclaimed that I, your beloved protagonist, got the job!!!
I GOTS THE JOB!!!!!!!! WOOOOOOOOO!
Of course there are so many things to gush about, so I'll begin with the ultra-cute uniforms! The outfits are mainly light blue dresses with pink cuffs and white sewn-on aprons with lots of frills. Cassie said the customers love it when we wear cute hair accessories, so I planned on wearing a pink scrunchie and maybe a Water Faerie hairclip I have somewhere in my bedroom. Cassie's second suggestion was to wear cute jewelry: rings, a bracelet, and maybe a necklace? I don't have pieced ears, so earrings were out of the question, though Cassie owns this adorable Cybunny pair! I love them so much!
And I could go on and on about how wonderful my time at Plushie Palace was! I mainly had to thank Lucy for giving up her position, and I suppose my manifested destiny played a role in it too. I felt like—at last—my future felt certain and that I was actually going to enjoy my job for once. Everything seemed idyllic and for the first time over, I felt that everything was going to go my way and at last I can feel good! But you know the ole Neopian saying: One who is blessed with fortune will be blessed with misfortune. I don't know why anyone would be such a downer to come with such a depressing phrase! At least this part saw more positive stuff happening to me.
Next part, however, I can make no promises. CURSES UNKNOWN QUOTE-MAKER!!
YOU WILL RUIN EVERYTHING!
To be continued…