Tuesday, October 31, 2006

happy halloween!

Here's to being whoever you want to be...

Monday, October 30, 2006

decisions, decisions

Yes, feeling torn. Here's the house update...maybe it could become a weekly thing so that y'all suffer less. Meanwhile, it will remain pretty much the only thing I think about.

I have a realtor. She was referred by friends (thanks) and I really like her. We spoke on the phone on Friday (twice and for quite awhile). She's very helpful and explains lots of things that I never even would have known to ask about. When I asked her questions she either answered them or said she would have to do some research on that. She actually did do some research. When I sent her two other houses I was curious about she promptly gave feedback, both positive and negative and all practical and relevant.

Since I'm still not sure about the house that you've all seen, I wanted her to go with me to see it. And I took the brother along. (As an aside, it's weird to be a fairly goal-oriented person who is now in the position of just wanting to be told what to do, what decision to make... If it wouldn't be inconvenient and bothersome I'd like to take each of you to see the house. Then you could fill out little questionnaires, we could put the data in a database, and magically the decision could print out the other end.) My brother is pretty knowledgeable about house things, is handy, and has a weird, very selective attention to detail...I thought all this would be helpful. He's also my brother and it's important what he thinks. It was better walking through the house this time. The owner was gone as were some of her things. It was easier to take your time and some secret little cubbies could be delved into, some of which you couldn't see before. (cph...the upstairs secret cubby held shoes. Shoes! A secret shoe closet!) I could talk more openly while going through the house because I like this agent and she's actually working for me. She was great on the walk-through, too. She pointed things out that she'd want to ask the inspector about. She paid attention to all the little flaws; things that may be nothing or things that may be indicative of problems you'd want fixed. At the very least, you'd want to ask about them. But she liked the house and thought the price was pretty fair but that it should be able to go down a little.

Last week I emailed an old insurance connection and emailed him again yesterday to get specifics about this house. I also got pre-approved through my bank (just so I'd be pre-approved somewhere and it was easy to go there). Thanks to my lovely friends, one mortgage place kept coming up repeatedly in their suggestions so I contacted them as well.

Yesterday morning I looked on the har website with a really open mind. With a mind that was pretending the other house didn't exist. I looked at all the areas around here...even places that were a little further away than I want to live. I even went up in price about $25k more than this house costs (and way more than I could ever spend) and I still found nothing else interesting. They honestly all look the same. I want my friends to be able to know that that house is my house. I want people to be able to recognize it even if my car isn't parked out front. Even if there were no house numbers and all the landscaping died. Even if I'm not sitting on the front porch drinking sweet tea.

There was only one set of houses in one neighborhood that looked ok. My realtor told me they have MUD taxes. So basically, I could get one of those houses that costs about $20k less but would end up spending more per year for less house and more taxes. How much sense does that make? (We're in the middle of rationalizing here.) So then, just for fun, I looked up houses in the Heights. Comparable houses there cost $200k more and sit on a lot that is less than half the size.

So I still love the house even if I'm trying to ignore it or trying to hate it. The difference in monthly payments between it and the arbitrary limit I had set in my head is only $100. I still have to wait on info about the insurance. I'll still sit here in the evenings plugging away at the calculator. And I'll still have a decision to make...

Friday, October 27, 2006

the night shift

So, yeah, I've been awake for 4 hours. I woke up during that last band of storms--the one that was followed by these gloriously lower temperatures--and I couldn't fall back asleep. After about an hour I figured if I was up already I might as well get some work done. Now, at not-quite-8:00, my workday is nearly halfway over.

I really do need to start a list about why my job is great. This would be one of them. That if I can't sleep (which has never happened before), I can drag myself (PJs and all) the few feet to my office. If, for some reason, I do get tired later, I can nap without guilt because I know probably not many people were at work at 5am reading some boring crap and sending e-mails. That's actually why I started working this morning--the boring crap. I thought that if anything would make me want to go back to sleep that would be it. But it didn't. The upside is that, again, not many people are reading the boring crap at 5am and the program works MUCH faster.

I saw the sunrise and then ran to Whataburger for a taquito. "Still in jammies?" you ask. You betcha.

Another reason the job is great...and not just the job but the company...is the new benefits package. They are promoting our well-being with things like free smoking cessation help, free Weight Watchers, lower prescription co-pays, and no co-pays for preventative healthcare including cancer screenings (pricey things like colonoscopies, etc.). Do you think you can get in trouble for blogging positively about your company?

Well, I better get back to work. The day's just flying by. Before you know it it will be time to go home...wait, I'm already there.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

a day in the life

6:45 am - Wake up.
7:00 am - Get out of hotel bed. Look outside and realize it is very dark. Time change is coming, as is bad weather. Think that flights will probably be delayed today.
7:45 am - Look for Starbucks online.
8:00 am - Get stuck in traffic even though hotel to Starbucks to office should be very short trips.
8:15 am - Use Starbucks Drive-Thru because it is pouring. Think how annoying the car in front of me is because woman does not turn off wipers causing water pouring off Starbucks' roof to fling directly at barrista.
8:16 am - Turn off wipers.
8:30 am - Make it to office. Still raining.
11:30 am - Tired of snarky comments written in notes by employee here. Decide to be a b!+ch right back and point out every little thing she did wrong.
11:31 am - Annoyed at employee using ALL CAPS ALL THE TIME. Why do people not know this means they are yelling? Maybe she does know...
1:15 pm - Finished with work. Go talk to employee before heading to the airport. Feel uncomfortable (again) that she apparently had bad experiences with previous co-workers and generalizes to me. Glad the next visit here will be the last.
1:30 pm - Leave for airport.
1:33 pm - Decide I probably won't use enough gas to go below "F." Decide not to stop to get gas.
1:42 pm - Take exit per directions. Realize that last time I did this I thought it was a stupid exit to take (yet did not make a note on directions).
1:44 pm - Make a note on directions while driving. Also take liquids (lip gloss, concealer) out of purse and place in quart-size Ziploc bag with other liquids, put folder back in bag, and move ID from purse to travel wallet also while driving (don't tell the police).
1:50 pm - Get to rental car place and have to return car in the rain despite having a large covered area. Wonder who hasn't been doing their job. Feel simultaneously annoyed that I'm standing in the rain and grateful that my job normally doesn't require me to stand in the rain.
2:00 pm - Helpful Southwest woman puts me on stand by for 2:15 flight.
2:01 pm - Notice security line is obscenely long. Think I'll never make flight.
2:20 pm - Get to front of security. Annoyed that woman in front of me walked through before her numerous bags and bins made it through x-ray. Sure, I'll push them all through.
2:22 pm - Make it to Gate 5 expecting to miss 2:15 flight. Hear that plane has been boarded but has been delayed 10 minutes. Go down jetway.
2:23 pm - Realize that flight is pretty full. Flight attendant says the middle seat in Row 4 is available. Notice very large woman in Row 4. Also, sickly man.
2:24 pm - Get one bag in overhead and other under seat. Squeeze into middle seat while offering large woman option of leaving the armrest up between us. Doubt she could put it down anyway.
2:25 pm - Feel like sardine but at least I'll be home early.
2:26 pm - Lean toward sickly man to try to respect space of large woman.
2:27 pm - Sickly man coughs. Not a dry cough. Wet. Lots of phlegm. Sounds like he needs a spit cup. Delicately balance between sick man and large woman. Large woman coughs as well (dry).
2:28 pm - Try to rank my least favorite characteristics of previous row-mates. Smelliness. People who touch me. Phlegm. People who talk when I don't want to. People who try to get me to quit good job that utilizes Masters degree to become a secretary in order to find a husband.
2:33 pm - Decide it is difficult to put these things in ranked order.

The rest is pretty mundane. Just thought there hadn't been a good glamorous travel story in awhile.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

life as it should be

A little more of a break before getting back to house stuff. Here's the post I've been delaying. I got this e-mail from a friend of mine who was around during these times. Thought I'd share. Walk with me down...

Let's go back... Before the Internet or PC or the MAC. Before semi-automatics and crack. Before Playstation, SEGA, Super Nintendo, even before Atari. Before cell phones, CD's, DVD's, voicemail and e-mail...

Way, way, way back... I'm talkin' bout


- Hide and seek at dusk
- Red light, Green light
- Red Rover, Red Rover...
- Playing kickball & dodgeball until the first...no...second...no...third street light came on
- Ring around the Rosie
- London Bridge
- Hot potato
- Hop Scotch
- Jump rope
- Duck...duck...GOOSE!!!
- YOU'RE IT!!
- Parents stood on the front porch and yelled (or whistled) for you to come home (no pagers or cell phones)
- Mother May I?
- Hula Hoops
- Seeing shapes in the clouds
- The sound of crickets
- Running through the sprinkler
- Cereal boxes with that GREAT prize in the bottom
- Cracker jacks with the same thing
- Ice pops with 2 sticks you could break and share with a friend

But wait...there's more...

- Watchin' Saturday Morning cartoons
- Fat Albert, Road Runner, Smurfs, Bugs Bunny
- Schoolhouse Rock
- Wonder Woman & Super Man Underoos (I totally loved Underoos)
- FONZIE...AYYYYYYYY
- Playing Dukes of Hazzard
- Catchin' lightning bugs in a jar
- Christmas morning
- Your first day of school
- Bedtime Prayers and Goodnight Kisses
- Climbing trees
- Swinging as high as you could to try and reach the sky
- A million mosquito bites and sticky fingers
- Jumpin' down the steps
- Jumpin' on the bed
- Pillow fights
- Sleepovers
- A 13" black and white TV in your room meant you were RICH
- Runnin' till you were out of breath
- Laughing so hard that your stomach hurt
- Being tired from PLAYING
- Work meant taking out the garbage or doing the dishes
- Your first crush
- Your first kiss (I mean the one that you kept your mouth CLOSED and your eyes OPEN)
- Rainy days at school meant playing "Heads up 7-Up" or hangman" in the classroom.

Remember that? Oh, I'm not finished yet...

- Kool-Aid was the drink of the summer
- So was a swig from the hose
- Giving your friends a ride on your handlebars
- Wearing your new shoes on the first day of school
- Class field trips with soggy sandwiches
- When nearly everyone's mom was at home when the kids got there
- When a quarter seemed like a fair allowance
- When ANY parent could discipline ANY kid (or feed him or use him to carry groceries) and nobody, not even the kid, thought a thing of it.
- When your parents took you to McDonalds and you were COOL (ours was Pizza Hut)
- When being sent to the principal's office was nothing compared to the fate that awaited you at home
- Basically, we were in fear for our lives but it wasn't because of drive by shootings, drugs, gangs, etc.
- Our parents and grandparents were a much bigger threat! And some of us are still afraid of em!

Didn't that feel good? Just to go back and say, "Yeah, I remember that!" Well, let's keep going!! Let's go back to the time when...

- Decisions were made by going "eeny-meeny-miney-mo"
- Mistakes were corrected by simply exclaiming, "do over!"
- "Race issues" meant arguing about who ran the fastest
- Money issues were handled by whoever was the banker in Monopoly
- Catching fireflies could happily occupy an entire evening
- It wasn't odd to have two or three "best" friends
- Being old, referred to anyone over 20
- The worst thing you could catch from the opposite sex was cooties
- Nobody was prettier than Mom
- Scrapes and bruises were kissed by mom or grandma and made better
- It was a big deal to finally be tall enough to ride the "big people" rides
- Abilities were discovered because of a "double-dog-dare"
- Spinning around, getting dizzy and falling down was cause for giggles
- The worst embarrassment was being picked last for a team
- Water balloons were the ultimate, ultimate weapon
- Older siblings were your worst tormentors but also your fiercest protector

Share this with anyone who may need a break from their "grown up" life... I TRIPLE DOG DARE YA!

Monday, October 23, 2006

somewhere over the...

Ok, cheesy new poll to pass some time and give us all a little break from the house stuff. (Note--It's not my picture. Still can't post any of those as the personal computer is still dead.)

No one was very interested in Hal. No one cared why I loved him. It was because of all those things...

Enjoy the cool weather!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

regrouped...for real this time

Ok, so I've decided I just really want the house. That the stand-in real estate agent just sucks. Why should I listen to one stranger's opinion when he doesn't even know the neighborhood I'm talking about or the geography of the area despite his 20 years of experience? And, after painting his grim little picture, doesn't even follow-up.

Tomorrow I'm going to run up to my bank to see if they have a mortgage person there. If not, I'll call the woman in town who can help me get pre-approved. Then I'll shop around...just want to have that pre-approval.

Thanks to some of my fabulous peeps (new and old), I now feel like I have some direction in which to move. I've never done this before, it's scary, it's not something I want to learn as I go along (because I've never been that kind of person), and all big events make me crazily emotional (because even the happy things are tinged with sadness because Mom isn't there).

I'm not apologizing for being emotional. I don't want my mood stabilized. I like to feel life and that means a variety of emotions. Here, among some other things I'm sure I'm leaving out, is what I've got swirling around in the background: changing jobs 4 months ago and all the new stuff that goes with that, turning 30, being single and childless while it seems everyone around me is remedying those two conditions in their own lives, buying a house (of course), realizing that the last "practical" step that comes with having no parents will soon happen (dividing the stuff), making the transition from my +1 (my bub) becoming someone else's +1 (which has all sorts of mixed emotions but despite those I'm really happy for both of them), being concerned about a few of my friends. Honest to God I think I'm allowed to flip out when someone who is supposed to be an expert and working on my side tells me I won't be able to fulfill that good ol' American Dream.

But I'm feeling better now. Regrouped. Ready to kick some booty and take some names. (Why do you take names? So you can later brag about the booty-kickin'? So you don't kick the same booty twice? So if you don't get around to their booty kickin' you know who to come back to?)

Here's another tease of the house...the (slightly blurry) master bedroom.

Friday, October 20, 2006

regrouping

***WARNING: If you do not want to be subjected to sad whining, please read only the information in bold.***

That's what I'm supposed to be doing--regrouping. I'm supposed to say I didn't want that house anyway. That surely there were tons of things wrong with it. That it just wasn't meant to be. That all feels like bull$h!t right now.

I love that house. I think it should be my house. I saw it and didn't want to look around for another one. I still don't really. I want to sit on the couch watching the Project Runway finale (finally!) and cry a little with them because their dreams are coming true. And maybe eat some sweets...

It sucks. The woman who owns the house only bought it 2 1/2 years ago for probably more than she should have. That pretty much translates into cjh won't be able to afford it. Still. Can't afford it. The other houses like that around here--that could possibly go on the market if all the stars aligned--would go for about $15-20 more a square foot. So the agent I talked to (and disliked) yesterday basically painted a pretty grim picture. It seems like unless there's some sort of miracle, I'm not going to be able to get a house I love. I could get one with the characteristics I'm looking for but one that's too small to hold my stuff. Or I could get one of a reasonable size that is like every other freakin' house out there. (I apologize to those of you who live in "every other freakin' house out there." That's great for some people but not what I'm looking for.)

I'm trying to be over it today. I'm trying to think "water under the bridge" and all that. How I'll just keep looking and something will work out. Or that maybe this woman just needs to get out of this house and will take a loss. What I'm thinking is how I'm tired of things being so hard. That for once it looked like things could easily work themselves out. God knows that rarely happens in my life. Take my love life...yeah, no reason to elaborate there. Or my job. I like my job and this is what I've been working towards. Yep, working...this is my 4th job out of college, slowing paying my dues to get a reasonable paycheck and a few perks. Meanwhile, others just skip those steps and ease right in there. And do they have something I don't? Who knows but it appears what they have is less education and a worse work ethic.

So what is being responsible and working hard and saving money and going about life the way you "should" getting me? Apparently disappointment. News that I'll still not be able to buy the house I want. In addition to just wanting a house, I know I can't keep living with my brother forever. His life is moving on. He should live on his own and then get married, etc. I can't keep living here. And I don't want to throw money into an apartment. I don't want to live in an apartment again. Isn't 7 years of that enough? No second income on the horizon. So what am I supposed to do? I know, I know. I'll be ok after a few days and will be able to think rationally again. It just doesn't feel like I'm asking for much. I don't want a million dollar home or 3,000 square feet. I want this great old house that's 1,800 square feet and about $15,000 more than I want to spend. A house that the mere prospect of owning made me happier than I've been in a long time. And now the loss of which has gotten me pretty bummed. (Ok, the bold in the last paragraph is a little joke...see, can still find humor.)

Thursday, October 19, 2006

too sad for a title

It's not going to be my house.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

visualizations

Tigger, this one's for you... I know you believe it is most important for me to visualize what I want but I could seriously use everyone's help. What we need to be visualizing is me in this house (even if you've never met me--I think you can visualize my spirit or something). We need to visualize me getting pre-approval for a loan. We need to visualize the inspector saying it looks great. We need to visualize the sellers coming down on the price so that I feel comfortable with it. We need to visualize it all going smoothly and positively.

Honestly, I love the house. I could see myself living there and at the same time can't believe I could be so lucky as to own that house. It would make all the waiting and the sacrificing and the being responsible all worth it. It's so beautiful. And like all big steps in my life, I wish Mom were here. She'd be so proud that my brother and I are doing so well. And I think she would have loved the house, too. (Ok, I didn't mean to go there but was suddenly overwhelmed with emotion.)

Ok, so anyway, the house is fantastic. It is not as "perfect" as the pictures looked which suits me just fine. There's enough cosmetic work in it to keep me busy and let me put my own personality in it but doesn't appear to need anything major. I could go on and on about all the little details but I think you'd like to hear just the best part. I won't mention the original built-ins, the fantastic original wood floors, the original glass door knobs, the fantastic staircase, the (not just crown but) dental moulding. The best part is that the house was built in H-town. A carpenter bought it and moved it down here about 10 years ago. It was in bad shape then so I'm thinking he probably did electrical and plumbing. Central air and heat have been put in. He built the garage and porch then. AND...it wasn't built in 1940. It was built in the '20s. Yep, that's the best part.

your two cents

Yesterday I forgot to mention what made me really nuts. I knew I needed to call the real estate agent to set up an appointment to see the house. It was like calling a blind date. I was nervous and had to psych myself up. How ridiculous is that?

I'm going this evening at 6pm. First, I'll have to do my hair and change clothes nine times.

Anyway, I've never purchased a home before. My credit is quite good. I have a bank and a credit union. I know nothing about home-buying--loans, paperwork, realtors, making offers. A friend told me yesterday that she figured I would know a lot from when my brother bought this house. I talked to him about it last night and he said all he could tell me was that after he signed the papers he felt like he needed to go outside and throw up. Unfortunately, that's the only part that I think will come pretty naturally to me, too.

Any and all advice is welcome. Feel free to comment or e-mail me. (The upcoming post I mentioned this past weekend will have to wait another day. Maybe when there's less to talk about.)

Monday, October 16, 2006

insanity

Ok, it's tomorrow. I called the agent and am waiting for her to call me back to set up an appointment to look at that house. Seriously, this is already making me insane.

I woke up early this morning because it is super windy here. Granted, it is always fairly windy but when the Weather Channel's little picture tells you it's going to be windy you know you're in trouble. The wind chimes were making me insane. I went outside to take them down and then couldn't fall back asleep. I was thinking about the house. Since it's been so long since my "stuff" has lived with me instead of in storage, I was thinking about my old apartment and what was where. Then I was thinking about where I would put things in the new place. And what colors I would paint things. And how much I could really afford to pay for a house. And if anyone else wanted "my" house. And how it would look decorated for different holidays. And on and on.

I know if this isn't my house, I'll find the one that is. I know there isn't a rush to move out. (Do you think sellers would like that? Sure, take all the time you need...I'll just pay you $5,000 less.) But it sure is a cute house. With a bit of a yard. And a newly renovated kitchen. And some wood floors. And that porch... And, some of you will be terrified by this but to me it's a selling point, it was built in 1940. How great is that? Sigh...

Wish me luck with this whole process. And sanity.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

home sweet home?

How beautiful is this house? I'm going to call the agent about it tomorrow. Not that that means anything but I guess the house hunting has begun...



The other post will have to wait another day...

Saturday, October 14, 2006

oddities

Just a quick little note... I really should keep a list of things regarding work. Things that make it cool to travel, things that are nifty about working from home, misconceptions, how it makes you weird. Here's a weird one.

I never really traveled before this job. I grew up a poor, country kid. I never left Texas until a band trip the school raised money for when I was 17. It was Disney World, by the way. And I never flew until I was almost 21. That was to see a friend in Phoenix. I didn't feel left out then. It really was a simpler time even though it wasn't too terribly long ago.

(My post for tomorrow will oddly relate to this. "Why are you not posting that today?" you ask. Because I still want comments on my last post--God love you and your motherly concern, Bubba's Mom--and poll responses.)

So here's the weird part. As I was driving (off into the sunset) to the BBQ cook-off last night, I saw a plane coming in for a landing at the small airport. I was wistful. It had been, get this, a whole 10 days since my last flight. The life I have now says that's too long. That poor little country homebody would never have believed it.

Friday, October 13, 2006

yea for fall! yea for hal!

It's here. It's really here! At least for today...

So even though I haven't been traveling out of town this week, it's been very busy. I've been trying to fit in all the social obligations, deal with some dilemmas, get all my work done.

Last night I had a fun, progressive evening. Before-dinner drinks, dinner, dessert and coffee each at different places I've never actually been inside before. Good times... Somewhere along the way I mentioned "Hal," my recently developed crush. At the time, I could not think of his last name (don't you hate it when that happens?). It's Sparks. (I was going to just ask questions here but I'm totally making a slightly inappropriate poll. I apologize in advance to the people who think I'm still 8 years old and think boys are icky.)


Here are some pictures. Tell me why you think I like him so much (you can vote for more than one choice).






Oh, and people love The Breakfast Club most, then Ferris Bueller. No one liked Weird Science? Shocking.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

maybe pluto's to blame

Remember how I mentioned before that my personal computer broke? Apparently that was only the beginning.

Yesterday my work computer crapped out at times. About the right third of the keyboard ended up taking control. And by that I mean it was like I was pushing the "control" key. That's fun. And I could only use the left shift key. I have realized that I almost solely use the right shift key when typing so this has thrown me off. And sometimes "shift" did not work at all. And some of the numbers just ignored me at times. I tried to restart. Still broken and I couldn't even log on because my password and ID each have a capital letter. Sweet. If I shut down, walked away, and started all over again it would work. For maybe an hour. Today it seems to be ok.

During all of that I was listening to my iPod. It suddenly just stopped playing. Six seconds left in an REM song...froze. No button would work. It would do nothing. This sucked because I have most of my music (as a back-up) on the broken personal computer. After walking away from this, too, I found out how to re-boot it on the Apple website. Praise Jesus.

Then, just for fun, my cell phone charger that I use in my car...yeah, broke. This only reinforces my thinking that I need a new cell phone.

So three things in one day. I don't know a whole lot about astrology but one thing I've heard numerous times is that when Mercury is in retrograde bad things happen with technology (and you should also not sign contracts or make really important decisions). I looked it up...Mercury is not in retrograde. Just when astrology had a chance to prove itself...

However, this is the summary of my October forecast: "You need something good to happen, and you need it fast. You have become tired of waiting for a really positive, happy month, especially because you haven't had one in a long time. Few signs have had to carry so much, with so little positive feedback to keep you going. Happily, now you will have your superb month, and it comes at precisely the right time." Maybe there's something to it afterall.

Friday, October 06, 2006

tgif

Usually it kind of gets on my nerves when people say that. However, when you've worked more than 40 hours by Wednesday, it pretty much captures your feeling by Friday. Despite that, it was a good week. I'm not sick (knock on wood), I didn't die in the broken plane, I had an interesting chat with a girl in the airport who told me she had a learning disability but neglected to mention she has auditory hallucinations as well, I dug myself out of the hole I was in at/with work...

I got a piece of mail addressed to "the amazing (insert my real name here)." Let me just say that if you actually send fun mail to a person, you should always address it to "the amazing," "the fabulous," "the beautiful," etc. person. It is an even nicer way to get mail.

I got to see and feel Fall for a good 4 hours. Did you know there are fall foliage hotlines as well as regional fall color maps?

And last night we had a little girls' night dinner. It was a good time--good food, good sangria, good company, good conversation. I love all my girlfriends, near and far. I love that women can have conversations about anything. That you can pick up right where you left off with even the ones you rarely see. How you can talk about frivolous things or your deepest fears. How all this stays the same as you get older, as told by Bubba's Mom. And how even though I know men can have deep, satisfying relationships with other men, it just seems better between the girls.

So it seems I'm out of the funk I was in, which is nice. Have a good weekend, people. If you're in a place where the leaves actually change colors, please take advantage of it in honor of those of us who are patiently awaiting the arrival of cooler temperatures and crock-pot meals...

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

journey of 1,000 miles

Ok, so it wasn't 1,000 miles (more like 768) but it should have been. Since I've been so backed up with work lately (I'll interject here that this is kind of punny as I'm working on a constipation study), I felt thankful yesterday that I was smart enough to have booked myself a 5:30pm flight. I still had time to get some work done yesterday and attend a conference call. Made it easily to the big airport. All my tiny liquids and gels fit in their resealable, quart-size plastic bag. We were leaving from a B84 gate, which sucks. That's the gate that crams way too many people in way too small a place and then makes you take a teeny, tiny bus trip to the plane. They called for us to board the bus right on time. Things were looking good.

As soon as I hauled my bags up the bus steps and got settled, some kind airport employee peaks her head into the bus and tells us we'll have to go back inside. Apparently there was some mechanical problem with our plane. That's always encouraging. I sure hope those inspectors really care about their jobs. So, yes, you'd rather have them say that there is a problem than to ignore it. You would, of course, rather there be no problem to begin at all. They weren't sure how long it would take to address the issue.

Then they come on and say we should only be delayed about 30 minutes. Not too bad.

Then they come on again and say they were misinformed. We would probably leave around 7:00pm. At this point, I went to grab some food with two ladies who were strangers only minutes before. We all chatted a little to get to know one another.

They actually let us board the bus again around 7:10. Sure, I thought, we'd gotten this far before. We got on the plane but didn't leave the ground until around 7:50.

When I'm sitting on the plane before we take off I always say a quick prayer that it will be a safe, uneventful flight. I'm no fool; it could be safe and still super scary. And I'm not completely sure about my religious beliefs but I think a quick little prayer can't hurt.

The flight was uneventful and safe. We landed and the plane's steering broke. Again. We had to get towed to the gate. Very slowly.

By the time I left the rental car location, it was 10:40. I didn't get to the hotel until midnight. Ugh. The hotel is much better than the ghetto one I stayed in the last time I was here in Topeka. But the bed, oh, the bed...it's the tiniest little bed I've slept in since my toddler bed. Ok, maybe since the dorm. Still, it's small.

So that was the journey. Let's hope the trip home tomorrow goes a bit more quickly.

Monday, October 02, 2006

miscellaneous weekend stuff

In an attempt to get caught up with work, I spent most of yesterday at "the office." In an attempt to not be too pathetic, I only did the mindless tasks and ones that may possibly be construed as fun (if, say, one were imprisoned or something). But I did get work done...work that I would never have had time for because of all the catching up I have to do. And, maybe, work that will help me do a better job in the future. Success? Only time will tell.

Very sad that the Astros season is over. So close... But it was an incredible run at the end, and I'm still proud. I blame Doug, my former supervisor, who felt compelled to talk about the winning streak. What kind of male/sports fan is he? That's the quickest way to end a streak...

Thanks for all the comments on the last post. Feel free to keep throwing out ideas whenever they come to you. And the new anonymous, welcome.

I spent part of the weekend looking at houses online. My house isn't for sale yet. I think I'll know it when I see it. And since I haven't felt very productive at home (what with needing to be productive at work every minute I wasn't sick during the last month), I got a little work done here, too. It all kind of seems like it's preparation for the new house. I went through my closet, filed, and organized some other stuff. Seems like I'm trying to make it easier to move. It will be very exciting. "This is my house." So many people take that for granted. If it ever happens, you're all invited to stop by. Please bring Home Depot gift cards.