Guest Fox: Iris Blobel

                                                         By Jeff Salter

             When I decided to resume last year’s practice of hosting Guest Foxes here on Hound Day, Iris Blobel was one of the first names to come to mind.  We’re colleagues at Astraea Press:  each of us has one book published with A.P. and we both have contracts for second books.  Recently, Iris graciously featured my overseas (Arctic) experiences on one of her blogs.
            We’re half a world apart – 13 time zones, I think she’s established – since she lives in Australia and I’m in Kentucky … and we’ve never actually ‘met’.  But somehow I feel as though I’ve known her for a long time … and I bet she has that effect on lots of people.
            Seeing the photo of the stunning site of her worst job … makes me want to visit there!

                             The Worst and Best Jobs I’ve Ever Had
                                                         
By Iris Blobel

             It was kinda funny when I received Jeff’s email asking whether I’d be interested in a guest blog – theme:  Best / Worst job I’ve ever had. It had only been the night before that I was talking to my husband about my job at a small Lodge in Scotland – Thalladh-A-Bheithe. Took me ages to get the name around my tongue! 

Worst Job
            It’s a small place near Loch Rannoch. Stunning place. Mum knew the owners, so we had arranged for me to help out for a couple of months. Me being the youngest in our family and spoilt to the core, it was the hardest I had ever worked until then. Early mornings, late nights. Cleaning toilets! Tidying up after guests. Serving guests – and all that for a couple of quid. From memory, six days a week. Worst of all, when my “Oma” (Nan) died, I got all of two hours off and then back to work. It was definitely the toughest day ever to get through.
            When we had tourist groups staying, however, the owner usually organised that we could join them for a day trip around Scotland: Edinburgh, Perth or Loch Ness. 
            When my husband and I were talking the other day about my worst job, I began reminiscing about the beautiful scenery, the girls I worked with, and the fun we had (while walking to the nearest town which took about an hour or so). Also about the places I got to see, attending one of the Highland games (too funny!). I recalled when we told the owner’s kids all about Freddy Krueger and laughed so much at our wickedness. Well, I’ve never ever been that nasty again, because I paid for it straight away; I don’t think I closed both eyelids at the same time for the next three nights in my little room under the attic!
            Bottom line – even though it was hard work, I have fond memories and if I call that my worst job, life has been very good to me so far!

 Best Job
            Well, my best job was definitely my secretary job at the television station in Germany. Loved it. It was at the Department for Light Entertainment and apart from doing the common office duties, reading scripts and meeting “German TV stars” was part of the weekly routine. Could a young girl ask for more? It was with a heavy heart that I left that job after 2 ½ years … to travel in Canada, where I met my husband! So it was meant to be.

 Bio
            Iris Blobel was born and raised in Germany and immigrated to Australia in the late 1990s. Having had the travel bug most of her life, Iris spent quite some time living in Scotland, London, as well as Canada where she actually had met her future husband. Her love for putting her stories onto paper has only recently emerged, but now her laptop is a constant companion. Iris resides west of Melbourne with her husband and her beautiful two daughters as well as her dog. Next to her job at a private school she also presents a German Program at the local Community Radio.

 Blurb
            This is Iris’ upcoming release by Astraea Press – (until then you can check out “Journey to Her Dreams” here) : 

                                                    Innocent Tears
            Becoming a parent can be daunting at the best of times, but for Flynn, a business lawyer in Melbourne, it almost pulls the feet from right underneath him. He’s become a father to six-year-old Nadine literally overnight! He had no idea about her existence, and the news throws him into chaos, even more so when he is asked to take over custody.
            With the help of Emma, an employee at the hotel where Nadine and her grandparents are staying, and his parents, Flynn tries to do the right thing. Yet, the right thing in his eyes differs from his parents’, and Emma is voicing her opinion as well. And right in the middle is little Nadine, still grieving the loss of her mother and finding a wonderful friend in Emma. There’s no doubt she’s afraid where and with whom she will settle.
            But in the end, it’s a letter Flynn receives that helps him figuring out what to do.

 Questions:
            Anyone have any questions for Iris?  About her worst and best jobs?  About her books?
            What have been YOUR best / worst jobs?

About Jeff Salter

Currently writing romantic comedy, screwball comedy, and romantic suspense. Fourteen completed novels and four completed novellas. Working with three royalty publishers: Clean Reads, Dingbat Publishing, & TouchPoint Press/Romance. "Cowboy Out of Time" -- Apr. 2019 /// "Double Down Trouble" -- June 2018 /// "Not Easy Being Android" -- Feb. 2018 /// "Size Matters" -- Oct. 2016 /// "The Duchess of Earl" -- Jul. 2016 /// "Stuck on Cloud Eight" -- Nov. 2015 /// "Pleased to Meet Me" (novella) -- Oct. 2015 /// "One Simple Favor" (novella) -- May 2015 /// "The Ghostess & MISTER Muir" -- Oct. 2014 /// "Scratching the Seven-Month Itch" -- Sept. 2014 /// "Hid Wounded Reb" -- Aug. 2014 /// "Don't Bet On It" (novella) -- April 2014 /// "Curing the Uncommon Man-Cold -- Dec. 2013 /// "Echo Taps" (novella) -- June 2013 /// "Called To Arms Again" -- (a tribute to the greatest generation) -- May 2013 /// "Rescued By That New Guy in Town" -- Oct. 2012 /// "The Overnighter's Secrets" -- May 2012 /// Co-authored two non-fiction books about librarianship (with a royalty publisher), a chapter in another book, and an article in a specialty encyclopedia. Plus several library-related articles and reviews. Also published some 120 poems, about 150 bylined newspaper articles, and some 100 bylined photos. Worked about 30 years in librarianship. Formerly newspaper editor and photo-journalist. Decorated veteran of U.S. Air Force (including a remote ‘tour’ of duty in the Arctic … at Thule AB in N.W. Greenland). Married; father of two; grandfather of six.
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66 Responses to Guest Fox: Iris Blobel

  1. Iris says:

    I’m here !!!!

    Thanks for having me Jeff. Much appreciated 🙂

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      How long are you gonna be awake? It’s nearly midnight in Possum Trot KY, and I’m heading to bed. So you’re on your own for the next 9 hrs.
      See ya in the morning!

      Like

  2. Meg Mims says:

    My worst job was being a lowly student receptionist, answering phones, copying documents and running ragged. I have to admit I would have NOT traded that for cleaning toilets, Iris!! LOL

    Like

  3. tonettejoyce says:

    Iris, nice to have you with us; I hope you check in with the rest of us once in a while,(mine will be up on Fiday). I have to admit that I was a personal assistant/housekeeper for a while and cleaning someone elses’ toilet IS probably theone of the worst things a person can have a job doing, but my worst job was not that one.[BTW,I always thank any worker I find cleaning when I enter a restroom; it is a thankless , nasty job but where would we be without them?]
    I hope you surely tookla lot out of that experience in Scotland and all of your travels. It is cetainly never to late to start a writing career, trust me.

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      I would really love to visit that lodge where Iris worked in Scotland.
      And when I go, I’ll be sure to thank the restroom attendants!

      Like

    • Iris says:

      Hi there … yes I’m trying to catch up with Jeff’s posts as often as possible – he makes me laugh 🙂
      I do thank cleaners as well, and try to leave things the way I’ve found them … it’s an unthankful job, if that word exists in English … hmm (where’s my editor ?)
      Yes, Scotland was important for my character. I learned a lot and surely “matured” a lot 😉

      Like

  4. jeff7salter says:

    Okay, I’m REALLY leaving now for bed. Goodnight!

    Like

  5. jbrayweber says:

    Fun post, Iris! Would love to visit Scotland someday, too.

    Worst Job: Let’s see…telemarketing. ‘Nuff said.
    Best PAYING job (notice I said paying – motherhood, being a rock and roll band manager, and being a writer doesn’t count – LOL!): Hmmm…don’t really have one. I mean, I’ve worked for some great companies, but really, it was all a means to an end. 🙂
    Instead, I could list some of those jobs –
    Fragrance model, peasant at the Ren Fair, clerk at a record store/smoke shop, jack of all trades at an national aftermarket car accessory company, clerk at a car repair shop, make-ready manager at a car dealership, supermodel

    Jenn!

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Supermodel? Cool. But now your secret is out!
      Hey, Jenn, I thought one of your good jobs was “cruise director” on a pirate ship. Or did you forget all that experience after you wrote the novels? Ha.

      Like

    • Iris Blobel says:

      Telemarketing must be one of the worst jobs (besides toilet cleaning) …. I don’t even answer phones anymore …. it’s ridiculous, but when I do I TRY to be very nice …. I fail miserably most of the times …. Record store …. whooohoo that’d be one of my best jobs. As a trainee at the TV station I had a months in the music library – HEAVEN !!!!!
      Thanks, Jenn for stopping by 🙂 and yes Scotland – well worth a visit!

      Like

  6. tonettejoyce says:

    Photocopiers! I adore them! I can’t believe that I have my own….for many years now but it seemed so far-fetched years ago,(that I could have my very own!) What is it about them?
    Iris,I have Fridays and my blog comes up first all weekend, so I have been waiting to put mine up later,(not at midnight), so you will have more time ‘at bat’ as we say.
    I can imagine the ghosts, but I have lots of experience with the likes, not all of it pleasant.I could deal with them…take me to Scotland!

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      One thing I really liked about the place I worked for many years was the fantastic array of office equipment. We had copiers, scanners, fax-ers, shredders, binding machines, hole punchers, coin-sorters — you name it. now that I’m retired, all I have is a PC and a printer.

      Like

  7. tonettejoyce says:

    I like gadgets., my printer is a scanner,(it is also supposed to be a fax, but I don’t use it) I have a big manual papercitter and hole punch; I need a shredder.I have a lot of kitchen gadgets, some I inherited from my aunt.
    In my first job at a small depoartment store, I used a pin-ticket machine. If you ever wondered how the old straight-pin-through-the tag got on yor clothes or material purchases, a machine did it.Slip the part you wanted the tag on into a slot, a tag dropped and a pin slipped through it, ZIP! I was the only one who liked it; I think others found it boring and some found it frightening.LOL!

    Like

  8. Lindsay says:

    Great post Iris. I can’t remember my worst job. Guess it was so bad I wiped it from my memory

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Well, I’m sure your BEST job had something to do with collies.
      Glad you could visit today, Lindsay.

      Like

    • iris says:

      Thanks Lindsay. I think I can remember mine cos I’ve only had a handful of jobs so far. Have been very loyal to my current employer 🙂
      I reckon your best job’s been looking after Dakota!

      Like

  9. Hi Iris! Better late than never! I enjoyed the colorful descriptions of your past jobs. My fantasy trip of all time is to go to England )and a side trip to Australia would be nice too.) By the way, my husband is from Toronto and lived there until he was 33, but I met him here in the states. Blessings! Catherine

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Welcome, Cathy. Glad to see you here. I would also love to visit Great Britain … and wouldn’t mind seeing Australia some day (though not on the same journey).

      Like

    • iris says:

      Hi Cathy! Thanks for stopping by !
      England is beautiful! … but as Jeff said, I wouldn’t recommend touring the UK and Australia at the same time …. kinda could be tiring. LOL
      Toronto is beautiful! The most vivid memory though is going up the CN tower and stepping onto the glass floor … or should I say crawl 😉

      Like

  10. jeff7salter says:

    Well, Iris, it’s been a good long 25 hours … and I’m heading to bed again.
    Thanks, again, for agreeing to be my Guest Fox today. Tonette has allowed sev. more hours for this blog to be first on the 4F1H home page … so maybe we’ll get a few more visitors.
    If so, I’ll greet them in the morning.
    Good night (which is early afternoon for you).

    Like

  11. Innocent Tears sounds good! Luved the Worst/Best jobs section too. Why do those painful memories stick so well? Suppose my worst job was at 16, making motor mounts in an Uncle’s shop. If you don’t know what a motor mount is, lucky you. My best is without a doubt writing, spending days with my imaginary friends – can it possibly get any better? Though there was that one cush job with my own parking place and lunch dates with human beings that was pretty nice too….

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Welcome, Stephanie. Sorry it took so long for your comment to appear … but I was sleeping.
      I do know what a motor mount is, but have never known how they were made … or that teenagers were allowed to run those machines. Tell us more.
      Having a cush job with your own parking place and lunch dates — does sound super. Where were you working?

      Like

    • Iris Blobel says:

      Hi Stephanie! Thanks for stopping by! I wholeheartedly agree with you that writing is the best job … though I still need to get to the office every day to pay the bills 🙂 Your cush jobs sounds pretty good!
      PS – Innocent Tears will be out soon, so keep an eye out for it 😉

      Like

  12. Well, I’m late to the party…again!
    I so enjoyed reading about your experiences! I too am a world vagabond and head for the airport as much as my wallet will allow.
    I’m a teacher by trade and both my best and worst jobs are within that profession. My worst job was my very first one right out of college! I was in New Orleans teaching first grade. To make a long story short, my last day on the job a kid bit me twice and I had blood running down my arm and on my rib cage, I had a child hauled off in an ambulance and a father(?) coming down to the school to “beat his kid’s ass” just as soon as his appointment with his parole officer ended. I SO was not cut out for that job!
    My best experience was teaching 3rd grade at the International School of Kuala Lumpur. I had spent much of my life in Malaysia and found I still loved the school, the country, the people..well, just about everything while I was there again as an adult!

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Stacey, you’re always welcome here, no matter how late (or early) you appear.
      I had remembered you mentioning Malaysia before, but guess I ddin’t realize you taught school there. As for N.O. — that’s near my old stomping-ground. I grew up in Covington, some 45 miles north of N.O. across L. Ponchartrain. Of course, that’s as the crow flies. As you had to drive it, with all the N.O. traffic. It was at least a 90-min. trip from my house to downtown N.O.
      School teachers deserve a special place in Heaven. I had very few bad teachers, MANY very good teachers, and several EXCELLENT teachers who truly inspired me. I’ve been able to track down a lot of them to say THANKS.

      Like

    • Iris Blobel says:

      Hi Stacey! Better late than never, right 🙂
      I work in Admin in a local school and know that teaching can be a tough job. But I have to admit that school kid sounds like one rather rough kid, biting … not only the arm, but the rib cage as well! I had no idea teaching can be such an OH & S hazard!
      I’ve never been to Malaysia, only in KL airport, on my flight to Europe. it was the first time my girls had seen a squad toilet and I had to give them instructions. We laughed for the all the way to Europe and 24 hrs didn’t seem that long anymore 🙂 …..

      Like

  13. Welcome to the blog, Iris. I think you and I would get along superbly! I’m an avid travel bug as well. Loved your post. Lots of good wishes for book one and two!

    Like

  14. Jeanne Theunissen says:

    Well, I guess I’m the latest of all to this party, but my worst job was in a chicken plant on the “disassembly line.” Nuff said about that one, I think.

    I had the pleasure of meeting Iris several months ago, and was very surprised to hear not a trace of a German accent when she talked. She’s Aussie all the way! Oh, and Jeff, there’s between 15 and 17 hours difference in our times, depending on the time of year. It changes with Daylight Savings Time, as when you’re on it, we’re off it, and vice versa. Confuses my mum all the time… LOL

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      Glad you could visit, Jeanne, even if a day or two behind. Since we have that 15-17 hr. diff., I guess we can excuse a lot of time-related issues. Ha.
      One of these days, maybe we’ll have an A.P. meeting down under. Aren’t there at least 3 AP authors who presently live somewhere over/down there?

      Like

    • Iris says:

      Hi Jeanne! Yes, I enjoyed that afternoon as well, but it was wayyyyy to short! Unfortunately hubby bought a ticket for the footy evening session this year and I didn’t go. But summer is ahead of us and with my sister coming in a few weeks I have no doubt we will be catching up again 😉

      Like

  15. tonettejoyce says:

    I didn’t know they had Daylight Savings Time in Australia, although I DO know that some people go NORTH for the winter instead of south,like they do here,(I know, getting away from the south pole).
    Time-wise, what is always strange to me is speaking to my friend in Mumbai; they are 9 1/2 -10 1/2 hours ahead of us…and he finds it strange that we don’t have half-hour increments.

    Like

    • jeff7salter says:

      gadzooks … I have enough trouble with the one-hr. increments.

      Like

    • Iris says:

      Yes, I think we’re on a few timezones here in Australia, and with an 1/2 hr increment difference to the state of South Australia. There’s even the strangest (some may call it stupid) thing at the border of Queensland and New South Wales at the East Coast – with NSW I believe having Daylight Saving, people there have to think in two timezones when it comes to working across the border or even shopping, doc apt or trying to catch a plane! …. absolutely weird … Now Jeff, you try and get that around your head!

      Like

  16. Pingback: Guest Fox Iris Blobel Returns | Four Foxes, One Hound

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