Day 80 Keirra (1st person I approached)
March 21, 2014 - Keirra was born and raised in Melbourne, Australia. She has one older sister, and three step siblings.
“My biological father isn’t in my life, but my step father is the man I call my father. He has always been there for me. It wasn’t until a few years ago that I realized just how much of a father figure he has been. He’s my Dad,” Keirra told me.
She went to one elementary and one high school.
“I don’t have any friends in my life that I know from elementary school. Pretty much all of the friends I have, I know from high school. But I do appreciate that I never had to try to fit in at a new school, or get to know a new crowd of people like other kids who changed schools might have had to. I just grew up knowing all the other kids.”
When Keirra finished school she worked in retail for about year. After that, she started working in care homes.
“It was a Government program where they funded the position and I worked with patients in small home-like settings. The people I cared for and worked with had all kinds of different challenges, ranging from dementia, learning disabilities to mental health problems. All ages, and all kinds of different situations,” Keirra said.
“I did that for about two years, and then I went back to school. I wanted to work with animals and studied to become a Veterinarian Assistant. It was a two year program, and the way it was set-up I got to work and learn at the same time. That was beneficial to my style of learning. I do better in a hands-on environment. I’m not an academic type of person. Plus getting paid meant I didn’t have to be a poor starving student for years either!”
Keirra worked in veterinary care for the next six years.
“I reached a point where I knew I wanted to get out of Melbourne for a while. I had really wanted to go to New York, but that didn’t pan out. I’d love to go to Toronto and do the other coast thing,” she said.
“But I went to Banff and then Kamloops and ended up here in Vancouver. I’ve been here for two months now.” Keirra has spent her time in Vancouver working at a dog daycare in Richmond.
“I’ve enjoyed Vancouver. It took me a while to get used to seeing so many homeless people. I guess in Melbourne it’s better managed, or there aren’t so many. I’m used to it now, but it definitely took some time getting used to seeing that.”
Keirra is on her last few days in Vancouver, and is heading home to Australia next week.
“It’s been a great trip. I came here by myself and didn’t know anyone. My friends said they thought it was too much to travel alone, but I’ve really enjoyed it. I think when you travel by yourself, it makes it easier to meet people and you have to open up to others. I’ve made friends in the time I’ve been here. I’ll be back for sure, maybe later this year. But I’m ready to go home now. It’s time.” #notastranger