Monday, July 07, 2008

What's up

So it's been a while, huh? I guess that means it's time for another list...

- My job ended two months ago, because it was a contract position.

- When my job ended, I decided that instead of being sad or bored I would have an amazing adventure. So I went to the Philippines for six weeks.

- While on vacation, I accidentally went on a date with a married man who happened to have two children.

- I discovered his secret a day after the date (just a hint: reporters make pretty good detectives) and am very relieved that I didn't let anything happen other than a beautiful moonlit hug.

- I had a million adventures that included: almost being hit in the head with a falling coconut, snorkling in the ocean, accidentally having a bum massage when the hotel masseuse didn't understand I just wanted a back massage, staying all by myself for a week, swimming in the ocean, drinking San Miguel Light, learning to squat poop while holding a stall door closed (this takes some serious talent), taking a private art class, going to a stranger's burial, rejecting a few offers for free taxi rides, making my way across an island by bus, relying completely on the kindness of strangers, seeing homeless people laying on cardboard on the sidewalk, eating cheese ice cream (very stringy), and making a pile of new friends.

- I've been home three weeks now and am just starting to look for a job. I'm trying to hold out for something perfect. In the meantime, I'm doing some work on my house.

- When I came home, the guy I dated last winter said he missed me and asked if we could get back together. Of course I said yes. We've bothgrown a lot since the last time we dated and he really is one of the best guys I know. He knows I haven't had the healthiest relationships in the past and is trying to teach me what "normal" is. He's kind to me and he's so smart and fun. I've been smiling so much lately that my face feels different. It's great and I really hope things work out this time.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Another list of what’s new

Back in the summer, I bought three beautiful simple silver picture frames and have been putting my “artwork” up for display in them in the living room. The problem is that while the living room is full of colour, my bedroom has essentially nothing on the walls. So today I picked up another frame (16 x 20) to bring some life to my room.

On Thursday morning, I’m going to be in the boardroom presenting the project I’ve been working on for the past several months to other members of my department. I can’t wait to see what everyone else has to say.

My big sister had her baby last week. It’s a girl! The baby is cute, sweet and calm. Her brothers already adore her.

I’ve been going to a new yoga class lately. It’s called Hot Yoga, and they turn the heat up so you get really sweaty during the class. I love it. It’s the most relaxing yoga class ever. The first time I went, I wasn’t having the greatest day and I started to cry during the lights-out laying-on-your-back relaxation time. I really like how the class seems to pull my negative feelings out, leaving me feeling lighter and freer.

The guy I had been seeing who broke up with me earlier this month and I have decided we’re going to try and stay friends. I’ve missed him a lot these past few weeks and can’t wait to start hanging out again. I’m hoping we end up getting back together eventually, but for now I just want to be around him.

The guy I thought was gay has turned out to be not gay at all – and it’s kind of disappointing. A girl can never have too many gay boy friends, after all. This new guy likes me, but I’m not at all interested in anything more than friendship and have told him as much. He’s sweet and spiritual and considerate, so he’d be great to have as a friend. I’ve been tagging along with him to these Buddhist meditation sessions and my soul feels like it’s growing and being set free.

I’ve been reading a lot lately. Eat, Pray, Love was fantastic.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The highlights

Here’s what’s new in the life of this young socialist professional:

- The major project I’ve been working on since the summer is just about ready to go public. It’s huge. I can’t tell you all that’s involved, but this is basically the biggest thing I’ve ever done. I love it.

- Recently I started dating this guy I’ve known for four years. We were seeing each other for two weeks and then dated for two more weeks before things unravelled. I really like him, though, and we’re going to try to go back to being friends with the possibility that maybe things will work out down the road.

I told him that we’re exactly the same and exactly the opposite. Our opposites were getting in the way to the point that we couldn’t completely understand each other, but I think if we work towards having a better understanding of each other we could make things work.

- I have a strange unintentional sort-of date for Valentine’s Day with this (presumably gay) pretty guy I met at a bus stop a few days ago. He’s new to the area and I don’t really know many people in my neighbourhood, so I agreed to go for coffee with him. Only thing is that because our schedules are a little conflicting, it accidentally landed on Valentine’s Day.

- My sister, the Travelling Photographer, moved to the Philippines last week. She and her husband are leaving for two years. My sister keeps telling me about the cool things they’re doing (like eating mangos and touring the sites), and I’m getting the antsy travelling bug. I’m thinking about going to see her sometime once my contract ends and exploring Thailand and India while I’m in that corner of the world.

- My roommate is turning out to be the cutest, sweetest lady ever. She’s about twice my age and hardly ever home. She does my dishes, shares advise and even bought me a giant bag of chocolate chips to cheer me up after my sad break-up night.

Monday, November 26, 2007

More new things

Life is good. Here's what I've been up to lately.

1. I bought a house. It’s really cute and worth more than I paid. It has gorgeous hardwood, gigantic windows and a nice big kitchen. Right now I’m looking for a roommate, a cheap microwave, a smoke detector and a programmable thermostat, but other than that I’m all set. I’m so excited about the house that I keep having spontaneous solitary dance parties in my living room. I love it.

2. Since I bought my house I’ve gotten boring. I spent most of the last weekend shopping for a toilet, fridge, wardrobe cabinet, curtains and insulation. I actually get excited about going to Rona or Home Depot or Co-op Hardware. To keep from being such a boring homeowner and to make sure I remember to take care of myself, I’ve decided not to do anything on Sundays besides sleep, eat, read, go for coffee, watch movies, paint, go for massages or do other nice, fun, relaxing weekend activities.

3. I got a promotion. I’ve been an intern since February, but a few weeks ago I moved up to a contract position. My salary basically doubled and I get every second Friday off. (Yay!) My contract is only for six months right now, but it could be extended or I could take a different job in the company when it runs out.

4. My department went to an awards show where we won in all three categories we entered. I wrote our applications for each of the awards and even though I wasn’t involved in any of the stuff before doing up the applications, I’m proud that we won. The awards show was spectacular. Everyone was all dressed up and drinking martinis.

5. I voted, but my party lost. When the former premier gave his concession speech, a tear slipped out of the corner of my eye. I am a socialist at heart really liked how the government had been doing.

6. One of my best friends ever came for a visit. We’ve known each other since Grade 3 and have been close ever since we bonded over ruined ice cream sundays. She was just in town for a short time and I insisted she stay with me. As soon as I saw her at the airport, it was just like old times. We stayed awake late into the night giggling, catching up and not being able to get enough of each other. We had a great visit that was far too short.

7. An old friend and I have been emailing each other on Facebook and he’s making me miss the mountain town where I used to live. Magic happened there all the time. I think I’ll need to go for a visit soon.

Grey Cup night

Last night the team I was cheering for won the Grey Cup and thousands of fans headed into the street whooing and high-fiving late into the night.

I had to work in the morning, so I was thinking about just going home to bed, but my friend insisted I celebrate in the streets with her. She said: “You’re only 25 once and we’re not going to win this again in the next 20 years.”

So we went out and had some cold fun, which resulted in a police officer grabbing my arm and pushing me onto the sidewalk when I went to cross a street illegally. That’s the closest I’ve come to going to jail, and it was a bit of an adventure being manhandled by the police :)

I was pretty cold even though I was bundled up in a puffy jacket, scarf, hat, ski boots and mitts. Only my eyes and nose were exposed.

When I decided it was time to go home, I walked, alone, down a main street. I was only a few blocks from my friends and there were still tons of people around when I heard a drunk guy in a truck yell something about me being a hooker. Startled and a little afraid, I hurried home as fast as I could and was happy to lock the door behind me.

What I learned:
- Celebrating football victories with friends is good.
- Walking alone in the dark is not so good.

I should invest in a big, scary boyfriend or pepper spray.

Monday, October 22, 2007

My possible nest

Lately I’ve been thinking it would be nice to have a home of my own. It would be nice to have my rent go towards actually buying something. It would be nice to escape my roommate’s incessant door-bell ringing girlfriend and to know that only people I choose to let in would be allowed in. It would be nice to have a little nest.

I have my heart set on this cute tiny green and white house: I’ve been pre-approved for a mortgage, I have my deposit ready, I’m buying a bunch of furniture from my grandma’s estate (she passed away last week and I’ve been meaning show you the tribute I wrote her, which was adapted and read at her funeral), and I’m ready to buy the house and move. There’s just one little problem – the house isn’t for sale anymore.

The house had been listed for about two months and I kept drooling over it. I had just decided late last week to make an offer when my realtor said the owner is taking the house of the market temporarily while making some improvements so he can put the price up. While a contractor working at the house told me all the owner is doing is painting, putting in new carpet and replacing the bathroom sink and toilet, my realtor is guessing the price will go up $20,000. Needless to say, I don’t want to pay $20,000 for a paint job. I’m trying to get my realtor to talk to the owner and see if the owner and I can come to an agreement on the new price and the repairs being done.

I can’t stop thinking about the house and imagining myself living in it. It’s not in the best neighbourhood, but it’s affordable, in good shape and just the right size to fit me.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

In the last month, I …

- worked a lot of overtime all over the province,
- got into the habit of eating cake in hotel beds,
- kissed a bellboy in a park behind the hotel,
- decided to take a break from dating and from boys and am relieved to just be still,
- took a lot of photos,
- got tired,
- visited my sick grandma and told her that I love her,
- cried a lot,
- tried (unsuccessfully) to wash the last of the terrible dye job our of my hair,
- thought about scratching my tattoo off even though I love it,
- drew a picture of my soul (it’s red and white and blowing in the breeze),
- realized I’m so abstract it’s hard for people to understand me,
- went for a brilliant massage,
- actually did my physio exercises for the first time in months,
- got shot in the head while paint-balling,
- heard I have a shot at moving up into a contract job that has benefits and doesn’t come with “intern” in the title,
- crunched the yellow leaves on the sidewalk,
- watched the season premieres of Desperate Housewives and Grey’s Anatomy,
- got annoyed that Faunty didn’t get a phone when she moved in a few blocks away from me,
- became such a hotel snob that I checked out of one (disgusting) hotel after ten minutes and upgraded to the Hilton,
- was mistaken for a piece of artwork at a fancy restaurant when I was eating alone, separated from another table by a frosted-glass window,
- fell in love with chocolate martinis,
- gave presentations to other employees about what my department is working on,
- pulled a presentation together even when the laptop and powerpoint slides wouldn’t work,
- got impatient for an election to be called,
- saw the premier at a media conference and didn’t tell him he’s guaranteed my vote,
- was trusted to borrow a shiny company car,
- didn’t crash or otherwise damage the shiny company car,
- became more confident,
- paddled (and lost) at the Dragon Boat races,
- and became happier.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

An edited history

The small-town paper I where I used to work is in a bit of trouble; it has no editor.

It was about a month ago when I discovered this interesting gossip on a website I check for journalism job postings. Just this morning, though, I got an email from the journalism school telling me about the job, which means the publisher wrote to the school asking for the posting to be distributed. I was pretty sure the job was mine if I wanted it, but I wasn’t expecting the paper to try to recruit me or one of my classmates.

If you’ll recall, last year I had an interesting conversation with the editor and the publisher. They called my writing “childish” and “immature,” adding that I should try to use bigger words and more complicated sentences. As that is the opposite of journalism, I disagreed. Standing in the publisher’s office, shaking a little, I told her that my loyalties were to our readers and to making the news simple and comprehensible – and I told her it was an issue for which I would sacrifice the job. She backed down, but I left the paper shortly afterwards because I couldn’t stay knowing the bosses didn’t understand or value my work.

Naturally, I looked up the online version of the paper to see the last editorial from my former boss… and the way he was writing was remarkably similar to the style I developed for my column. And I saw an article the other reporter I worked with had written, which looked like an attempt to bring my column back. As I looked through the online content, I noticed a more casual, friendly tone – exactly what I had been working to develop while I was there.

I find it very flattering that they are looking for someone like me to run the paper. Even after so long, I’m glad to see evidence that they believe in me and what I was trying to do.