Friday, 21 December 2018

Budapest and Michelin, in hindsight.. 

Hi all you beautiful readers!
This  post is going to be a little different to the ones I have written before.
Unfortunately I had to return in late October for financial reasons(mainly as a result of currency differences between Hungarian forints and euros, I needed to save a lot more before France. Notes for future reference: must take currency and pay differences into account when travelling to different parts of Europe..) , as a result I will be writing this post looking back on my experiences in Eastern Europe and with Michelin. But what I really want to focus on is how the past few months have changed me - and will change you too.

I worked in Costes restaurant, Budapest city centre from June to October, which is a considerable period to remain in an environment like that. However, you probably already have a pretty good idea of what that was like from my first blog post. Needless to say - things don't change much around there. The environment was just as stressful, the pressure was still there and chef still wasn't happy. What did change, was me.
Chestnut and caramel..YUM.
Living and working in an environment and with people who make you question your  mental strength and patience, your purpose in the industry and whether you can do it or not will change a thing or two in anyone. Because yes, that is what happens in Michelin or at least in my experience.
Things/changes I have learnt about myself as a result of the job:
1) My skin is thicker then I ever thought it could be.
2) I survived Eastern Europe...
3) You will never truly know the depth of your personality until someone pushes you to the edge.
4) In Michelin, you will learn and improve whether you do/don't want to. It isn't a choice. It is a necessary characteristic of surviving(note surviving, not thriving) in the industry.
5) After Michelin,  almost nothing will stress you out in any other non- Michelin jobs. You can handle it.
6) All you need in order to make it, is determination...lots..of..determination.
7) If I could do it, you can too.

The majority of these changes were brought about as a result of spending 80% of my time in a high speed, high-pressure environment, It's sort of like being in a pressure cooker, you don't know if you will pop or not until you are there and pushing for as long as you can. Now obviously my experience was a rather harsh one, and I can 100% certainly say that there are Michelin restaurants out there where people walk in the door smiling in the morning. Whilst this wasn't one of them, I couldn't be more thankful for the experiences I have had because now I truly know I can do anything I put my mind to.

The past few months abroad didn't only change me as a chef, they have changed me as a person.
If there is any advice I can give you, it is going to be in the paragraph below.
Going into a year like this, you will be filled with great anticipation and fear both. Which is totally normal. Living on your own, managing EVERYTHING..from bank accounts to legal paperwork to
Poor Kiki never wants to hear Drake's "In my feelings" ever again. ;) 
insurance to your laundry and most importantly your mental health, one inevitable thing will happen which is growth. I was in a big city, surrounded by people ALL..THE..TIME. And yet there were times I was lonely and uncertain of what I am doing at all. You have no choice but to fight through it and come out the other end! The loneliness will be real, trust me. But you gotta be strong and call people when you need to! There will be times when this whole adulting thing is too hard. But there will also be a moment when you realise you are loving it. The thrill of the unknown, of being in a new city, meeting new people, failing and succeeding and surviving! All I can say is go into this year with your heart and mind open.
You will meet some incredible and some horrible people. You will learn to be alone, to love your own company. You will be responsible. You will become independent, and by the time you reach the second placement you'll be filled with mostly just anticipation and ready to take on another challenge!!
Going away dinner with some amazing people I've met. :) 
 I can truly say the past few months have led me to discover my own personality more then any other experience I have ever had before. I learnt to thrive on my own and honestly I believe that is one of the most important lessons we can ever learn!
Lunch on a Viennese Monday morning. <3 

Lastly, I want to say thank you for reading all this mumble jumble if you have been following me on my journey, and also YOU ARE ABOUT TO HAVE ONE OF THE MOST AMAZING EXPERIENCES OF YOUR LIFE! So enjoy it, and be safe!

Next time you hear from me I'l be in Lyon falling in love with yet another incredible city and attending Institute Paul Bocuse..challenge #2.

Sok puszi mindenkinek! (Kisses to everyone! It's a Hungarian thing...we are very huggy..)
Laters Xxd,

Hanna <3

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