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30 Days of Fika Books: Nineteen

I moved to Sweden after a twenty-something newly qualified lawyer in pastel coloured trousers explained the alphabet to me.

It's fair to say that me and day jobs did not mix.

I once got trapped in the display window of a Vancouver Gap store after*slightly* dozed off whilst pinning the spring collection onto the mannequin. Everyone went home and locked up the shop not realising I was still there. I was rescued after pathetically miming my predicament to some very confused early-morning commuters.

A year or so later I showed up, somewhat under the influence (it was my sister's birthday and I'd arranged a bucks fizz breakfast... then drunk most of the bucks fizz) to an office temp gig in the City of London. I might have got away with it had I not been fired the day before and nobody had told me. I assumed the other PAs were looking at me funny because, well, I was pished, and escaped to the kitchen for a strong cup of tea. There, my mobile rang. It was the temp agency asking what the hell I was doing there.

If you've never tried to tiptoe back through a very formal office pretending to be invisible, except that you're still sloshed so you bash into every desk you pass... well, all I can say is you haven't lived.

My career as a casting assistant came to a crashing halt when I told an actor he looked like a Dick. In my defence, it was the name of the character he was auditioning for, but he was so thrown by what he took as a random insult that he forgot his prepared speech and complained to his agent.

To be fair, it hadn't exactly been glittering since I accidentally gave out the wrong room number to a casting session. The director sat all on his ownsome wondering why no one was showing up to audition, while several actors attended what they thought was a very realistic, immersive improvisation workshop. It was an AA meeting.

My lasting legacy as a daycare teacher is a group of now-nine-year-old Swedes who, to this day, when commanded to stop, yell back hammer time.

I gave up being a kayak tour guide when I found tourists who only mentioned they couldn't swim only once they had toppled out of their kayaks and were now helplessly floating away, unbearably annoying. The first yoga class I taught after qualifying came to a crashing end when I demonstrated a downwards dog, my top flew over my head and somehow I got so hopelessly tangled up in it that I genuinely thought I would have to be cut out of it. I've never been so frightened in my life.

So it's really for everyone's good that this publishing thing works out.

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