Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the flat
Mulled wine was a-stirring in a plentiful vat
The foodstuffs were packaged and purchased with care
And J whipped up dinner with time to spare
The children surrounded the impromptu spread
While visions of store-bought cake danced in their heads
Then E busted out her operatic chops
To amaze us all and make our hearts stop!
Slapdash it was, but it all turned out right;
So Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night :)
Flowers for my first day of work! Love.
I have walked into so many bars (ouch!) and coffee shops trying to find a job. Sooo many happy hours and business cards, cover letters and emails, and a fair share of ups and downs over the last few months. All I have to say about that is… job searching is no joke!
But after 16 weeks of living out of a suitcase, 14 weeks of couchsurfing around the Bay area and more interviews and applications than I care to count, I’m employed! I started work on Monday, moved into a sublet on Wednesday, and life is generally starting to feel a little less frenetic.
Hopefully that means I’ll start to have more time for blog-worthy adventures exploring California’s great outdoors! But in the meantime I’d thought I’d share my lesson-learned from job searching.
Job searching tip #1: Go to every happy hour / networking event you can work up the energy to go to. And then work up the energy to go to some more. Smile, make a good impression, get a business card, follow up. You never know which door you knock on will open.
That’s how I ended up in my job–I connected with my current boss at a happy hour a month ago. Good thing I walked into that bar!
I went to a fab event this evening–more on this later. Briefly, it was an art show opening in the Mission. I got there right at starting time, and a few people were already milling about, munching on the assorted finger foods and admiring the art.
The following story in no way lessened my enjoyment of the event. But it’s worth sharing.
A middle-aged man, not pictured, passed by as I was sampling the chips and salsa.
Him: “How’s it going?”
Me: “Mm.. it’s really nice!”
Him: “And you’re just eating the food, are you?”
Me: [Munch, munch.] “Well, it’s pretty good.”
Him: “Because that’s what Asian women do at these events.”
Me: [Pause. Munch.] “Do they? I didn’t realize that was a thing.”
Him: “Yes, it’s a pejorative stereotype that people have.”
Me: … [At this point I give up and just start shoving chips and salsa in my face to avoid conversation.]
Him: “But that’s not what you’re doing.”
Uh, right. Nice save.
Crazy as it sounds, I moved back to the U.S. the day before the Olympic opening ceremonies.
- Avoid the crushing crowds
- No AC on the London Underground + crowds of tourists in summer = sauna
- Endless Olympic coverage makes me feel like I’m still there
- Staying longer means spending more money–speaking of which, I need a job.
- My mom came to London and helped me move back–no way I could have done it alone!
- I do have to say, the one thing about America I missed more than anything else is clean water. After just one day and one shower here, I already feel so much fresher than I ever did in Europe. European water is kind of grimy on the whole.
- I MISS LONDON INCREDIBLY. I’m not ready to be back yet.
- I’M MISSING THE OLYMPICS. I wonder if I’ll ever again be living in a host city in an Olympic year?
A hilarious conversation I had with my brother tonight, when the British national anthem played during the ceremony:
Bro: What! This is so anti-American! Why did they change the words to our song?
Me: It was originally the British anthem–we took it and changed their words.
Bro: You mean this is what they play when the British win gold medals?
Bro: Well, I wouldn’t know. Brits don’t win gold medals.
Harsh, bro. Harsh.
I think of you a lot when I’m on the road. While we bounced along the nauseatingly dizzy Duke’s Pass in the Central Highlands. Or when I was driving tepidly along winding lanes in the Lake District, uncertain of what might appear around the next bend, I thought of the many narrow mountain passes (with frighteningly few guardrails) you drove on our family trips. Since I usually take public transportation, just being in a car at all reminds me of how safe I felt when you were behind the wheel. But now having been in the driver’s seat I know how anxiety-inducing it can actually be.
Or I think of how hard I made you work during our family trips as a kid. Like when I didn’t want to go hiking so you had to carry me piggyback all the way up. (Oops, sorry. But hey, at least it gave you a good workout!)
Twenty-some-odd years later, I hope it’s not too late to say thanks. For all the work that made those trips possible, both in terms of bringing home the bacon and actually getting us from A to B. I wish I’d appreciated it more at the time. Little did you know, you were planting the seeds of a late-blooming passion for travel!
One memory that still makes me laugh out loud every time I remember it is from a trip we took to somewhere in the Midwest. Half Dome, maybe? Or some other big rock formation. You had perched your glasses on top of your head to see better through the viewfinder of the old Nikon. A few minutes later, you asked, “Where are my glasses?”
Bro laughed so hard, pointing out that they were on your head.
Five minutes later. Bro perched his glasses on top of his head to get a better view of the big rock through one of those coin-operated binoculars.
Another few minutes pass.
Bro: “Where are my glasses?!”
Happy Father’s Day :)