Spooky little girl like you…

Posted: April 26, 2012 in Uncategorized

I realize it’s been a few weeks since I last wrote. In my defense (against the dark arts), I have been super busy. With what, you might be inclined to ask? Working TWO jobs. I have taken on a super awesome part-time job at the oldest witch shop in Salem called Crow Haven Corner. It is different than my day job for sure. Research and Instruction Librarian by day and Witch by night (or weekends if you will). As different as the two positions are, there are some similarities. In both jobs, I work in the public sector. I have patrons (tourists versus students, staff, faculty) who want/need something. With tourists, they need my flier. That’s why I am giving it to them. Sometimes they don’t know they need my flier until it is in their hands. They also need a reading. Who doesn’t want to know their future? Seriously. Even if you are scared, there is a small part of you that is curious and I refuse to believe otherwise. We as humans are naturally curious and even when faced with things that frighten us, we are strangely attracted to it. So don’t act like you don’t understand what a reading is. You do and you more than likely secretly want one. My tourists also need help locating other venues and attractions. While this is certainly not a requirement of handing out fliers, the librarian in me has to help. So I spend a little time helping tourists get acquainted with the map, locating where they are as opposed to where they would like to be. I also give food recommendations, where to get a cup a coffee, a bottle of water, where to spend the night…and then, if asked, I do give a bit of history about witchcraft in general or the Salem Witch Trials. So in essence, I give information while I am out walking. Just like I do at the reference desk although there, I am sitting or standing in one place. Either way, I dispense information to those who ask for it.

On my three weekend shifts at Crow Haven, I walk nonstop for about five hours. I have a set area where I go and I really enjoy it. I get to be outside. I get to dress in my favorite clothes (goth, witchy, whatever), and I get to meet people. All in MY city that I love. On top of all of this, I work with some amazing women. LoreLei, my boss and owner of Crow Haven is a super strong woman who I admire greatly. She does not take shit from anyone and if I ever did manage to piss her off (which I pray to the Goddess that I never do), I would RUN. Jody Cabot is another amazing woman that I work with. She’s so witty and intelligent plus she is gorgeous. Nikki, who helped get me the job, is a super fabulous woman from the Midwest! Yes, Midwesterners unite. She is from a small town in Illinois and moved to Salem with her family about four/five years ago. We have a lot in common despite our age difference. She more than a decade younger than me. Gasp.

So between working at Wellesley College and Crow Haven, my free time is pretty much nonexistent but that’s okay. I’m living the dream, MY dream and while I am tired some nights, especially after walking around all afternoon on cobblestone streets in Dansko clogs, I am happy. I would not want to be anywhere else.

But the downside to this is I miss Matt. Like really bad, like super crazy. That’s the dark side to this whole “living the dream.” We can’t be together. And this last 8 weeks has been the most difficult. I won’t see him again until I arrive back in Indiana on May 22 to pack him up and move him to Monessen. What makes this 8 weeks worse is that he will actually be in Monessen this weekend and I won’t see him. He will be TEN HOURS from me and I can’t do anything about it. Neither of us have the money to make the drive and both of us have things to do. I work this weekend and he has appointments both before and after his Monessen trip. Such is life. Our life.

“Suck it up buttercup.”

Matt’s move to Monessen has taken a strange twist. He cannot afford to start school in June. No matter how we tried, the financial support was just not available so he will start in October instead. Not a huge deal but still a setback. And in the end,this will make his move to Salem that much farther away. Boo.

But the flipside to this is, he is opening a sister shop in Monessen! This was discussed when we went out to secure housing for him in March. His new landlord is a Monessen native who is very interested in revitalizing the town and breathing life into an art community that is all but dead. When Charlie (the landlord) found out we owned a tattoo shop back in Indiana, his interest was wicked sparked. We made it clear to him that Matt’s sole purpose of moving to Monessen was to go to art school not open a tattoo shop. But if Matt’s school schedule allowed such a venture, then we would seriously consider it. Now that things have changed, Matt has the time to focus on opening another shop so he is meeting Charlie this weekend to scout out shop locations. It is super exciting and I think could really be a positive thing. In the meantime, Matt would have a job tattooing meaning he will have an additional source of income. When he leaves Monessen for Salem in 2014, he will do what he did in Lafayette, appoint someone as shop manager and then go back as frequently as possible to work and check on things. I told Matt its like we “are dropping shops down all the way from Indiana to the east coast.”

So that’s the skinny on what’s been going on in our lives the past few weeks.

In other news, working out in the open like I do for Crow Haven lends itself to the line of vision of many creepers. Most of you know that if there is a wackjob within walking distance of me, we will cross paths. That’s just the way it is. Well, I’ve encountered my fair share of nutters this past week. Some harmless and some that made me question whether or not I should have carried my pepper spray with me. This would be a challenge since I mostly wear dresses but I guess I could stash in my bra. My grandmother used to stash food in her bra but then again, she was mental. I think if I need a snack, I will just return to Crow Haven and grab one.

Apparently Salem likes my look or rather, I simply fit in here. Either way, I love the feeling of finally belonging somewhere and not having to hide who I am or my faith but, some of the flirtatious advances I could do without. Especially from aging bikers who are old enough to be my father. Seriously. Now, I have soft spot for bikers. My father was a biker so I am no stranger to their environment or their bikes but that does not mean I want to give you my phone number or let you “take me to Maine to see cool shit.” I will wait to see this “cool shit” when Matt comes to visit. And not with the biker in tow.

I also find it hard to believe that after speaking with me for all of ten seconds that I am “so amazing.” If that’s really the case, then this person obviously has low standards for what “amazing” is as all I did was hand him a freaking flier. And no, I don’t want to have lunch with you or dinner or visit you at MIT or Cambridge or anywhere else in the world you might happen to be. Geez. Even after I establish I am married (and I always find a way to fit this into a conversation) I find that some people just don’t care. Like “out of sight, out of mind.” If Matt isn’t directly in my line of vision then I say, “Matt? Who’s that?” Sorry nutters but it doesn’t work that way.

And then, there is my “Midwest mentality.” You would think that being 36 years old, I would have learned by now that not everyone is trustworthy. But I trust everyone right away unless they prove me wrong. This has burned me more times in the past than I care to admit. Matt, is exactly the opposite. He trusts no one until they prove they can be trusted.  I wish I was more like him but I’m not. And so once I am taken from the Midwest, my smiles and generally friendly behavior makes me look either insane out here or open for invitations for advancements. I need to be more cognizant of this and remember that I don’t have to smile and wave at everyone. That sometimes looking the other way is a good thing. The right thing especially if the person looks deranged.

So when handing out fliers, I must be on the lookout for the crazies. They are all around and as the tourist season picks up, they might arrive to Salem in droves. Good thing I have a strong boss like LoreLei. If someone needs a smack down, I know where to go to find someone who has my back.

Until next time, don’t fear the reaper because he really is just doing his job.

  1. Erin says:

    Yay a new blog!!! I worked at a liquor store on and off for a few years… so man do I understand the creepy unwanted advances from old men. I’m so glad things are going well and you sound so happy (though we miss the heck out of you back in Indiana)… bummer about Matt’s delay but I am confident the time will fly by and you will be back in the same city before you know it. – Erin

  2. illustratedlibrarian says:

    Thanks Erin! I miss you too! Especially our work collaboration. You will need to visit MA in the future.

  3. Barb Stahura says:

    or “seasons don’t fear the creepers” – they seem to be everywhere 24/7. Excited to hear about your new job. Glad to read that 1) you don’t have to wave, twirl, shake a sign; and 2) you don’t have to wear a costume straight out of the Wizard of Oz! Sounds like a lot of fun and I’m betting the Visitor’s Bureau are fans of your efforts 🙂
    Hang in there – change is always hard. Love you bunches.

  4. Wendy says:

    Love the blog as usual. I can see your smile from here as you walk about Salem. As for the creepers… sorry to say, but they are everywhere and the best we can do is take charge of the situation. Be strong!!!

  5. kportillo says:

    I had the same Midwestern mentality problem when I started working in Chicago. No matter how many times my husband advised to avoid eye contact with EVERYONE on the street, I couldn’t help smiling at people. But, after a few crazies and crazy propositions, I learned. 🙂

    Glad to hear you’re loving Salem & both of your jobs!

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