The Story Behind My First Internship: Maria Karaivanova (M.B. 2 Michelin Star Restaurant)

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The following article is delivered to you by a person, who just has finished her 2 starred Michelin internship in M.B restaurant in Tenerife, Spain (HURRAY!!) and is currently sitting at a London airport – 3:45 am, with an espresso in one hand and a keyboard under the other.. trying to write about an experience.  And of course, it cannot be a regular report, because the experience was irregular and unusual. It is expected to be profound, emotional, wise, funny and probably at the same time professionally-orientated. Well, guess what…this won’t be it. I will just tell you the facts about my last 5 months in general.

I took a plane. I went to an island. It was very hot. The town I lived in – very small. The people there – never in a hurry.  The people there – all work at the same place. Weird. The first day at my working place – oh no, I am one of this people.  The first day – a lot of Spanish. The second day – a lot of confusion. The third day – a lot of work ..and oh they speak English too (but only to the others). Week 2 – oh they speak to me too. Week three – there are also really good parties going on here..not only work. End of month – the restaurant is closing. Well, that was fast. Next week – new kitchen(TXOKO), new people. Well, this is what the actual confusion looks like, I take my words back about the previous one. NOBODY speaks English. Next week – I think I am starting to understand I think I even try to speak a bit. End of the month – we don’t even speak the same language and I feel like I know these people forever. Shuuuup. Back to M.B. I haven’t seen any of them for a while. Oh now I actually understand what is happening around me. I guess Txoko paid off. Now my colleagues not only talk with me(so weird). They joke, we laugh. They give me responsibility. They teach me. We have useful professional conversations. People start leaving. New ones coming. Weird dynamic?! I understand I feel close to everybody. Days off – sun, ocean, amazing food, trips. So island life not that bad, huh?! Month 4 – new station. Boo scary. Starters – the one I have feared the most. Now I am going to fail miserably. Oh wait, I think it is working is going good..I am actually learning new I getting way faster than before? I think so. SO now I am not the new one anymore. I feel confident. People are trusting me. They allow me to make decisions, we have discussions, we plan, we cook, we enjoy. Now I am at the airport. I left the island life 10 hours ago. I feel like I left behind amazing memories, some tears, a lot of smiles, a new family. And the place left in me huge improvement and development – professional and personal.

These were the facts. This is also the story of my first time working in a restaurant. A story of rediscovering old friends, making new ones. Overcoming your fears. Doing things I thought I was incapable of. This is what I call education. This is how a person should feel during and after the process of learning – inspired, emotional – happy and sad sometimes, active, on-going, confident.
So I just want to finish with thanks – to my teachers, to my friends and to my colleagues and chefs, who gave me so much.