When I was in college I spent three wonderful summers working in a national park as a waitress. My co-workers were college students from all over the U.S.. I worked mostly breakfasts and dinners, so during the day, I was free to go hiking, climbing, biking and swimming. At work you'd be with your friends, looking out at beautiful scenery, and meeting mostly customers in a good mood because they were on holiday.
Once a middle-aged woman came in with her family and started smiling through tears as she ordered. Her kids explained that she had worked at the park during college herself back in the 1950s, and had always talked about it as some sort of lost paradise. So the family decided to surprise her with a visit, and they found it was even more beautiful than she had said.
I'm still friends with some of my co-workers from then, so I thought it might be a wonderful experience for my college-age children as well. A few years ago I drove them back up to the national park where I worked and we spent several days in my old haunts. The park was a lot more crowded than I remembered. There was even air pollution some mornings. But the kids who worked in the jobs still seemed happy and eager to share their love of the parks.
But they were all Ukrainians.