Tulane University, New Orleans, 1988
I was 26 and tired of serving food. My life had become routine and dull after two years managing the Tulane student restaurant for the Marriott Corporation and clocking over 70 hours a week. Work, work, no social life, and a taskmaster boss we affectionately called the ‘Cuban Hurricane’. I briefly entertained thoughts of being like her—confident, successful, powerful—yet my dissatisfaction grew. Feeding college students had never been a life goal. And hey, how many times can you drag out of bed at six in the morning to put your heart into scrambled eggs and soggy bacon for two hundred?
Living in New Orleans had been a welcome change for a Yankee from the Adirondacks of Northern New York. The rich culture, music, delicious food, and variety of people inspired me and woke up my senses, but I was young and yearning for more. I was torn between a secure job with steady paycheck and following the wanderlust in my heart, and I wondered if success and fun had to be mutually exclusive.
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