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Here we are! 9.30.12

This was on the way back from dropping off a guest at the convention center.

For Indianapolis locals, this sight probably doesn’t even register as noteworthy, but it’s different for me and Hailey. If you’re keeping up, you know that Hailey and I are from Louisiana. No, we’re not from New Orleans, which is the mental picture you probably have right now. I don’t meet many travelers that have visited Benton, my hometown, or Alexandria, Hailey’s hometown, unless they have family there. If you’re looking for a place to open up a hostel, Benton and Alexandria would put you in a financial hole in second.

Did I mention that neither of us had ever stayed in a hostel before starting work here three weeks ago? We’ve done our share of traveling with Peru, Africa, Cambodia, and Haiti on our lists, but hostels were not on our mental radar as of yet.

It was in Haiti, sitting under a tree with four chained-up dogs that we had our first ideas that would eventually lead us to the hostel. I graduated in May with my Masters degree in Social work and Hailey finished up an internship with a campus ministry after getting her degree in Sociology. We knew we wanted to try and work together. We knew how much we both valued people. So where do you go with those two ingredients? I know right? Sounds like some scam website where you might purchase a Vietnamese bride, but it was real and it’s how we found out about managing this hostel. If you walked up to me three months ago and told me I would a) be living in Indianapolis b) be in the hospitality industry or c) not overtly using my degree at all, I would have either labeled you the crazy prophet type or just ignored you (well, not you, but your words).

But here we are. Managing a hostel in Indianapolis, which on the surface has nothing to do with our degrees or our paths as of three months ago. Here’s a taste of what we get to do.

- Make a compost pile

- Cook gumbo for two chefs from different continents

- Work together as a husband and wife team

- Eat awesome organic eggs that guests leave in the refrigerator

- And most importantly, meet more amazing people in only three weeks than I can count

After I wrote the post last week I wondered if I had gotten caught up in a little over-enthusiastic optimism, but looking back on that in light of another week here in Indy, I think I was right on target.

Come see us. We’d love to meet you.

Waiting on Radishes - 9.22.12

Out of all the vegetables and fruits I could grow, I’ve heard that radishes are one of the easiest. It’s even suggested that they are a great plant for children to grow because it only takes thirty days from seed to harvest. Some of us need to see the fruits of our labor a little faster. Here are my soon to be Radishes.

I’m Kevin Singletary and I just started managing the Indy hostel about one week ago with my wife Hailey. Wondering what that has to do with radishes? We’ll see if I can tie it together. Here we go.

Transitions are supposed to be hard and they usually are. We moved all the way from Ruston, LA, a college town of about 20,000. We loved it there. We loved the sunsets. We loved the smells. We loved our favorite Mexican restaurants, El Jarrito and La Tienda. But most of all we loved our friends.

And here we are one week into a new adventure, managing a hostel or as many of my American brothers and sisters accidently translate into a hospital, or my favorite, a brothel. We have had so many good experiences here in such a short amount of time. We thought we might be waiting for those experiences like tomatoes (3 months), raspberries (2 years), or even asparagus (3-4 years).

But I’m learning new things. I’m learning that you can make friends in one week. You can make a small space into something great. And you can enjoy what you do. We’ve connected with so many travelers coming through the hostel and Indy locals during this small time. Just like growing anything, all we did was water and throw seeds, someone else made it all happen.

So now, I wait on radishes and wonder how many great experiences and friends I will have to talk about when they arrive in thirty days.