So I'm coming up to exams in November, and the pastry cook I work with is awaiting the arrival of his new baby. Waiting, waiting, waiting... theory exams come and go without incident, then it all comes down to my final practical assessment on the 29th. My boss had wanted me to skip TAFE when the pastry cook had his week off, but sorry... no-can-do this week.
The Wednesday before my prac exam, wet weather and slippery conditions caused a certain mishap on the road that left my car with an unfortunately remodelled bonnet. OK, stay calm... it's my day off tomorrow, we can take it to get assessed straight away, then take it from there. Ahhhh... nope. Later that evening I finally get the text I've been sweating on for weeks... pastry cook and his wife are coming close to heading for the hospital. Goodbye day off, hello getting the whole family up at 3am to take me to work in what was up until now our back-up vehicle.
On my own at work, stressing about the sudden change in transport situation (yes, my poor old car got written off), AND trying to stay focussed on exam preparations... they say things come in threes! Many thanks to my wonderful father, though, for volunteering to get up at crazy hours of the morning to drive from Morpeth to Mayfield to pick me up and take me to Salt Ash for my 4am start from the next day onward so we didn't have to drag the kids out of bed every morning... and as if that wasn't enough already, my dad also did the leg-work in finding us an awesome car to replace the one we lost.
All's well that end well, though... we now have a MUCH better family car than we had before, my prac exam went really well, and although we're still ironing out a few problems at work caused by a staffing re-shuffle that didn't quite work, life is slowly getting back to normal. Oh, except that the day we picked up the new car my computer chucked a wobbly and decided not to work the next morning. And our lawn mower died yesterday. But you get that... just when you think it's safe to back in the water, so to speak!
- Kylie Skellams
- Newcastle, NSW, Australia
- I’m a former industrial chemist, and after deciding on a career change while at home with my two young children, I’m now a qualified pastry chef. In 2009 I started taking some classes in cake decorating and other pastry-related cookery, and taught myself many more decorating techniques from books and internet resources. In 2010 I started a pastry apprenticeship, studying Retail Baking (Cake & Pastry) Certificate III at TAFE, which I completed with Distinction in 2012. I completed my apprenticeship in December 2013, and am now working as a full time Pastry chef and Cake Decorator at 'Exquisite Cakes by Lennert' in Cessnock, NSW.