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Thanks, guys, for the words of encouragement. I don’t know where this funk is coming from, but I’m doing my best to shake it. Part of it is work (it’s lovely to find out some coworkers think your work is crap and not worth doing), part of it is stress, and I think part of it is just a sort of nebulous “something isn’t right in my world” feeling that is probably just my own psychosis having some off days.

Anyways, this weekend has helped, I think.

John had the weekend off, the first he’s had in awhile. I haven’t gone into work at all, though I may have to this evening if Steven reports back that my viruses are about to take over the incubators. Mwahaha.

Instead, I’ve been lazy. And it’s felt good.

Yesterday, John made his version of huevos rancheros for breakfast. While not all that authentic, they were damn tasty. Then I spent about 4 hours loading music onto my computer.

In the Great Logic Board Replacement of 2008 (4th logic board in 3 years–Apple, take note!), I managed to somehow backup my iTunes preferences folder instead of my iTunes library folder. Brilliant, right? So I loaded CDs onto the computer while sitting on the couch reading. Only problem was that my (new, right?) disc drive only recognized about 1 in 10 CDs, so I had to reboot 9 out of 10 times. Hrm. Apple, you may be getting a call on your 90-days warranty for work. Oh, and the touchpad you replaced? The mouse click button only works on the left, and my thumb rests on the right. Convenient, that. Just don’t wipe my computer clean and give it back to me with Tiger on it, when I gave it to you with Leopard on it. Hrm? Mmmkay then?

We did some grocery shopping, and made a casserole for dinner, but mostly just spent the day doing nothing in our separate ways. I did practice my talk (committee meeting Tuesday, where I justify my existence and paycheck to my boss and 3 random people) a couple times, but also finished my book. It was lovely.

We were supposed to help with a scuba class, which also would have been lovely–compressed air therapy is always nice, and I love working with students. But with 10 students, 4 instructors, and 4 divemaster candidates in the pool, it was pretty packed. Greg and James F and Ben and John and I decided it would be better for the divemaster candidates to get some experience rather than for the guys to have our PADI-certified help in the pool. Ah well, it was nice to do nothing, too, instead of spending 6 hours in chlorine.

Today was a little more productive. More music loading, more cooking (Honey-Mustard BBQ shrimp with pinapples and peppers is being prepared as I write), more hanging out, but we also worked on the backyard. A bike ride was supposed to occur, but the backyard ended up taking more time. The porch was pretty piled with crap, mostly ours but some of Amelia’s, too. We threw away a lot of our crap, took a bunch of stuff to storage, and cleaned off the rest. It’ll theoretically be restacked nicely and neatly in a way that allows more use of the room on the porch. I’m trying to talk John into doing a July 4th BBQ, but we’ll see if that actually happens. Don’t hold your breathe.

I think the laziness and doing fun stuff has helped to get over some of the work-related stress and committee meeting stress, and the comments from the coworker. (Surprisingly, the best “get over it, it’s not worth it” came from the Lab Manager, who didn’t even know the comments had been made, but managed to say just the right thing anyway.)

I’m not sure about the nebulous “WTF is wrong” feeling, but since I can’t figure out what it is, I think I just need to get over it. If there’s anyone out there sending anti-Sarah thoughts my way, cut it out, would you?

Now I’m off to ransack the pineapple that’s being dissected. It smells too tasty to pass up.

Last night at the bar with Amelia and Steven and some others, I made the comment that I’m both excited and terrified to go home again in July.

And then managed to grin for a moment before tearing up, and if it hadn’t been for some good hugs from Amelia and the fact that I overheard someone in the group say something that I could joke about, thus diffusing the situation, it would have been very, very bad. Break-down-in-the-bar-with-people-I-don’t-know bad.

Maybe it was the alcohol, or just sort of the unexpectedness of that thought occurring to me, but I’m clearly not quite ready to sort this through yet.

*****

So some fun thoughts instead:

We’re going to see Sex and the City tonight. And yes, we’re going drinking first. Amelia, Cara, me, and one or two of Cara’s friends. Should be a very appropriate night.

I have a cute new purse. It holds more than just my wallet and two of the three: sunglasses/keys/phone.

The Belmont is this afternoon. Go Big Brown! No one get hurt!

I’ve named my fake snake Jake. He’s my therapy snake, and he’s blue and fuzzy. Bob was suggested by many, but deemed just not right.

The white cat, Tubby McChunkerson, has forgiven us for our absence and decided he now needs to be as close as humanly possible to me. This means following me and attempting to get inside my skin any moment when I’m not standing.

It’s a nice day out. And I’m going into lab. Huzzah!

Yes, that’s right. Go to Ben&Jerry’s and get a FREE ICE CREAM CONE!!!

So what did I do for my birthday? I didn’t turn 29 again, for one thing. Give me three years, Brat, and I’ll do it for the first time. However, as John so helpfully points out, I’m now closer to 50 than to my birth. And apparently 55 is the next birthday I get to look forward to, since it’s the next birthday that means something. In this case, I can get Senior Citizen’s discounts.

Anyways, my birthday was low-key and fun, just what I wanted. Minimum amount of time spent at work, then pedicures with Amelia. Hey, after that bike ride, we totally deserved to have someone rub our calves and feet, right? And now our toes are pretty, too. Then Thai food with Amelia, John, James, Cara, Nate and Shelly. Small and perfect and lots of fun. Amelia and I were both pretty tired, so dinner didn’t last too long, but James did manage to get the restaurant to put together a birthday dessert. In this case, fried bananas and ice cream. Mmmm.

Today, there’s cake at work, and ice cream tonight with Steven, Rhiannon and Sam. And John, when he gets done at work. And Amelia, but she’s opting out to go see some friends that just moved and are totally excited about showing her their new house. I had her last night, they can have her tonight, so it’s all okay.

AND DID I MENTION THAT THE ICE CREAM WILL BE FREE? AT BEN AND JERRY’S? FREE CONE DAY? YES? OKAY.

I also talked to my parents, sister, and grandparents, who are all in various stages of doing as well as can be expected. Amy just ran a half marathon, so she and I are both in that horrible “moving like we’re 97” stage of recovery, Mom’s doing okay but has some cankor sores acting up, Dad’s fine though a bit forgetful and didn’t include me on the “here’s what the family is doing and by the way happy birthday to Sarah” email, and my grandparents are just slowing down. But it was good to talk to all of them.

Now I’m contemplating putting my head down on my desk and napping until cake time. Gotta save up energy for all of that digestion!

Some days I’m fine. Some days I’m not. And some days I wish murder was legal.

Guess which sort of day Friday was?

It was stupid, really. Small things like the lady bus driver looking at me and then driving off as I ran for the bus. Or Lab Manager making the same stupid jokes he always does. They totally set me off, and I went from zero-to-bitch pretty much instantaneously.

Amelia was online and got the random iChat rants. Steven got the email version of it, being at home for the day, until I started sending him angry texts, too, when he wasn’t responding in a prompt and sympathetic fashion. (Patience didn’t really exist at this point.) He apparently had his email off in order to concentrate better, and when he went to read it, quickly indicated he was coming in to work post-haste in order to ward off the nuclear reaction that was me.

Between it being Friday, Lab Manager leaving early (and thus saving me from doing him bodily harm), Steven coming in and finishing up my experiments, I was able to leave early. Be done. Go home.

So I went south to see John. I was supposed to help this chick with being comfortable in the pool following her scuba classes, but the pool was full of shrieking idiots and their kids a swim school lesson.

(Dear god why do you create a pool specifically for scuba diving, then let a swim school, and a shitty one at that, rent it out and thus prevent all sorts of scuba people from getting in at reasonable times, such as any time before 8pm? Oh, the money, which is totally worth pissing off all the people who make your business work. That’s right.)

So I went and hung out with James and Cara for a bit, then Cara, Amelia and I went for sushi and drinks. It helped, immensely. Actually, my stress levels deflated upon leaving work, but the girl time and the fun were exactly what I needed. The giant crying jag I had upon getting into bed may have relieved some of the stress, too.

So the only real reaction I was left with was planting my butt on my sofa all weekend. Watched Stanford’s amazing OT win against Washington State (and really hoped the incredibly annoying WashSt girls from the Pac10 Tourney were there to witness their team’s loss, not that I’m a vindictive bitch or anything). Then had gyros with Amelia, and sat around waiting for the Arizona-UCLA game to start.

Which would have been a much better game has Arizona played with their heads outside of their asses. No, they played well, just not as well as they can, and UCLA pretty much shut them down. When they were down by 30, I stopped paying attention and went off to start making dinner. They lost by 22, which is way better than 30, but still. Not so good. But steak and potatoes and garlic loaf bread (not garlic bread, but a loaf of bread made with whole cloves of garlic in the dough from Safeway, sooo good) made things a bit right.

Sunday, I did meet up with the chick for the pool session, although we started 1.5 hours late due to the scuba class being in the pool in the morning and misestimating the time they needed to finish. Eh, I got paid, and I got to sit on the bottom of the pool.

It’s amazing to me sometimes how just being down there, breathing and floating in peace, can change so much. We call it compressed air therapy, and it really is. I think because even if their are people around, you’re in your own little bubble. You can’t talk (okay, you can sign, but still). It’s a great way to be alone with your thoughts, or just to be contemplative, or just to empty your mind. Whatever’s needed. I love it.

Amelia and I met up and made a Safeway run afterwards. Thankfully, the SuperBowl had started so the store was pretty empty. We made some cheese dip (dear god people, do not let cheese dip burn or you will have a hell of a time cleaning the damn pot) and guacamole, and then just sat around eating and watching commercials. DVR is great–you can fast forward through the unimportant stuff, like the game. John got home, and we did actually watch the last quarter of the game, and thus saw the only exciting part. I didn’t really care who won, but kind of wanted the Pats to pull it out and have a perfect season. Amelia doesn’t like Tom Brady (why does she never like the team stars? HATED Gred Oden, for example, for not really much reason), so wanted the Giants to win. (And why does she always manage to pick the winning team when we pick teams opposite one another? Sheesh.)

So it was an uneventful weekend, where I pretty much glued my butt to the couch. Good times, too.

I’ve been feeling fine since. Actually, pretty good. I’m TAing a class, and writing the midterm was easier than I thought it would be, though we still have to grade it. My meeting with Dr. M yesterday went fine. Experiments are about par for the course when it comes to working, but that’s actually pretty good. There might be another grad student in our lab soon. Two are rotating–one I’m not real fond of and one I am. The one I like and I are having coffee Friday so I can confirm/deny the rumors she’s heard about the department (and I can find out if there are new rumors since I was a first year).

Today’s Super Tuesday, and the California primary, which means, aside from the whole picking of the candidates thing (very important, I assure you), those damn political ads will stop running on TV. Especially the Indian gaming ones that piss me off. Do they really think I care?

That, and Hillary called me this morning. Woot!

Here’s to more good days! I just need a drink to toast with now…

P.S. Mom’s doing fine so far, and today’s the last week of the first round.

We went to Maverick in the city again for New Year’s Eve dinner, along with Amelia and her ex. They’re friends, so it’s not awkward, but it’s a bit weird for all involved.

It was tons of fun, though. The boys were in their suits, and Amelia and I in our little black dresses. None of us have jobs where we get dressed up, so sometimes it’s fun to go out and “act our age”.

Maverick did an awesome 4 course meal with wine pairings, and it was all delicious. I’ve discovered lately that I’ll eat cheese if it’s cooked, but apparently bleu cheese is just good as is. Given that Maytag bleu cheese is from Iowa, I wish I’d discovered this sooner. And I had some of the best steak of my life, I believe.

Also, the wines were amazing. The waiter was great about the fact that I didn’t like a lot of the reds. He’d fill my glass anyway, and the ex or John usually drank it. Instead, I got a bit more champagne, but I was also the DD, so it didn’t matter that I handed off the glass to others.

We had a great time, and the drive there and home were both very safe. I was a little nervous, given what happened to my cousin three years ago (he was driving home from the city, too, except up to Marin Co), and was very glad when we reached home without incident.

I was so keyed up from the evening that even though we were in bed by 3 with the lights out, I was awake until 5 or 6. Which made for a very, very late morning yesterday.

I’d gotten bagels, eggs, sausage, ham, OJ and coffee the day before, anticipating a nice and lazy morning on the couch. We did the nice lazy morning part, but were so lazy that only the bagels and the coffee were touched. We mostly sat around watching football: Michigan v Florida (go Michigan), USC v Illinois (go USC), and then the Sugar Bowl, where we cheered for Hawaii to win, or just score, or just do something right. Poor boys.

Amelia came over for the last game, and we had cabbage and black-eyed peas and ham for dinner, to bring luck and health and wealth, or at least two of the above. Apparently it’s a Southern thing? Eh, I’m all for it.

Today it’s off to work I went, although Lab Manager made some comment about leaving at 2, so you can expect me to walk out of here right around 2:01.

It’s Steven’s birthday tonight, so we’re off to celebrate. And then the Stanford-UCLA basketball game tomorrow. Then scuba class. Then the Stanford-USC game.

I’m going to need an evening off before long. Sunday is an official “do nothing once scuba’s over” day, I think.

Hope you’re all enjoying the last days of vacation.

It’s always hard, after a long break, to get back into the mindset of work. I haven’t done ANYTHING work-related since last Saturday, and believe you me, my mental health is so much better now than it was a week ago. I don’t feel like snapping at anyone and everyone, and aside from random back pain throughout the night (scuba injury long ago that reawakens often) and the cold John gave me (cough, cough), I slept fine.

No waking up in the middle of the night wondering what I’d forgotten to do at work, or what I’d left of my list of TO DO for the coming days, or what I’d messed up. No laying awake for hours mentally going over what needed to be done and how to do it.

I honestly feel so much more mentally healthy. However, the number of emails and stuff to catch up on is just heinous. I’ve actually done very little work-work today, and mostly caught up on lab correspondence and lab duties and whatnot. And met with Dr. M to review my thesis committee meeting, and plan how we’ll deal with our guest lecturer on Friday–apparently I get to give the lab talk for him.

(Insert heavy sarcasm here.) Yippee! Yay me! (Okay, we’re done now. Maybe.)

But, the best part was, as I went to go actually start some physical bench work, Steven told me not to bother, to do it tomorrow when I have all day. Woot! Love it when a mentor tells you NOT to work. I may be able to forgive him for whatever he did the other week that pissed me off so badly.

So here I am, kind of twiddling my thumbs, waiting for Journal Club to role around in half an hour or so, after which I can flee! And then…unexpected free time! Not sure what I’ll do with myself, but I’m thinking baking. Or watching a movie. Or reading a book. All things I haven’t done in a while. Of the things I now have the mental capability of dealing with.

I’m actually thinking of having a Holiday party in a week or two just so I can have Thanksgiving-type food and have leftovers and have tasty stuff again! My mom had a killer dressing recipe (I have it on good authority that it can only be stuffing if it’s, well, stuffed), and a pie crust recipe that involves VODKA. Now that’s my kind of pie! Apparently the vodka makes the crust moist, but then evaporates to leave it flaky? Trust me, you had me at VODKA. Oh, and I suppose we’ll have turkey. And then we can make a Thanksgiving casserole. Oh dear god, that sounded good!

And really, I just haven’t done any theraputic baking recently, and need to do some. You know things are getting bad when your therapy (baking and reading trashy romance novels for me) gets lost in the hubbub of being too damn busy being stressed.

*sigh*

Also, I’ve got basketball in the mix now, and even though my beloved Arizona boys put up a good show last night, they just couldn’t pull it together in the last couple minutes. (PASSING!! CATCHING!! NO TURNOVERS!! FORTHELOVEOFGOD BOYS I CAN PLAY BETTER THAN THAT!!! Btw, great job catching up to and hanging with #4 Kansas, but SERIOUSLY!!! You’re going to have to do better than that!!!) Basketball at least ensures that on one or two nights per week, I’m out of lab and home by 7pm in order to catch the games. We’re (Amelia and I) also working on bringing Rhiannon into the cult that is basketball fandom in order to get her out of lab.

But actually, what I’m really hoping I’ll have time for now that I seem to be back on my mental feet, stability -wise, is being there for others who aren’t stable. Amelia, specifically, who’s having some “fecal matter hit the rotary propeller”, as the case may be. Family-wise, work-wise, health-wise, love-wise, she’s having a time of it right now. Last Friday night, what was supposed to be a “Help Sarah recovery from committee meeting” turned into a “Help Amelia by listening and refilling her wine glass” night. And then this Saturday a bit, too. I think that sometimes I get wrapped up in my own little world and don’t have the ability to deal with other’s problems. I promise you, though, that has GOT to change. She needs me, and I’m going to be there.

So, no more crazy hectic weeks at work. I’m going to maintain this new-found stability. Even if we are gearing up and getting back into the swing of things, I’m going to be swinging slightly less. Or simply with less enthusiasm.

Hrm, that sentence alone doesn’t really convey what I want it to convey, but oh well! We’ll see what fun search terms it brings up! Hello all you random people who show up because of it!

Here’s to remaining sane through the rest of the holidays!

Yesterday, I’ve come to realize, was the accumulation of several months of stress, plus a few bad weeks, plus a bad, simply imploding on me. Frankly, I think I cracked a bit.

Amelia took me out for wine, which helped a lot, and we met up with our favorite waiter at one of the local restaurants. He was bartending, took one look at us, and let us drink for free. Hefty tip, I assure you.

Dinner with James M and co was fun, too. I managed to not kill him or John, despite the Y chromosome. There was even chocolate involved–in cake form, nonetheless.

Today, I decided, I wasn’t going in to work first thing in the morning. Instead, it’s 11am and I’m sitting here in my pajamas, with my second cup of coffee. I’ll go in in a bit, but I didn’t have actual bench work to do, and I can talk out loud at home as I go over my committee meeting presentation without disturbing anyone but the cats.

I’m basically trying to head a reoccurrence of yesterday off at the pass. So, some happy thoughts:

1. I learned from an uncle today that my grandfather was awarded a silver star, two bronze stars, and two purple hearts for his service in WWII. I’ve always been so proud of my grandfather, but even more so now. Back in high school, we had to write a biography of someone, and I chose my grandpa, who had died recently. Luckily, I had lots of family members to interview, and some of the men he’d served with in the army had written a book about their company, meaning I had stories from wartime. They included great things, like the fact that my grandfather asked to be transferred from an artillery company to a rifle company on the front line, thinking he could better serve his country that way. Or the time when he and his men were pinned down in a field, and he just got up and started running and led a charge towards the enemy, allowing them to win the battle and get out of there instead of letting the enemy pick them off slowly but surely. Anyways, long story short, my uncle wanted to know if anyone would like to have the medals, and I promptly said, yes please. I don’t know if anyone in my mom’s generation of the family wants them, and they should have them first, but if they don’t, I’d really like to have them. I never got a chance to tell my grandfather how proud I was of him, but I feel like it’s something I can do to let him know. (Really a rather sobering thought, but it makes me happy in a comforting way.)

2.Posada resigned with the Yankees! This means, with John and I head to New York next year to see them play, I’ll get to see him.

3. Arizona opens their actual season tonight with a game against Northern Arizona. Go boys go!

4. Dr. M has given me numerous compliments over my observations last week that led us to being able to answer a big question that was still looming in my research. I’ve got to work on finding proof, but now we have a hypothesis, instead of shrugging and being able to say “I dunno.”

5. I’m ready for my committee meeting. Bring it on, people. I’ve got plenty of work to show, so I know they’re going to be happy with that, and I’ve got proof that I’m nearing completion of two projects, and thus will have two manuscripts soon.

6. The theoretical goal of a graduate student is two publications. Now that Dr. M’s decided my work should be two papers instead of one, anything more is just icing on the cake. Tasty cake, too.

7. It’s sunny.

8. Amelia and I might go try a new soul food place for lunch. Mmm.

9. I found a good Christmas present for John, and it’s not even December. Now I’ve just got to find one for my dad, who’s the world’s hardest person to shop for.

10. I’ve had time to catch up on blogs today. Woot!

Ok, 10 it is, and I’m going to go finish my coffee, shower, possibly go to lunch, and then suck it up and go to work and try not to kill Steven.

(Last rant, I swear!)

Why, oh why, are boys dense? Apparently, the “I’m having a bad day, give me a break” comment was not enough to make him actually think that he needed to give me a break. So when Amelia texted him to tell him he was lucky he survived, he was mistified that he’d contributed to my bad day. I realize boys don’t understand subtlety or nuances, but seriously? If I say give me a break, GIVE ME A BREAK!

Ok, done. Happy thoughts, happy thoughts, happy thoughts.

Arizona and Stanford both open their seasons with exhibition game wins. I’m not sure this truely constitutes the beginning of their season, but who cares? They won.

Arizona beat Concordia University, and Stanford beat Concordia College.

We went to the Stanford game last night. That is, Amelia, Rhiannon, and I went. Amelia and I both have season (student section) tickets, and we’re trying to convince Rhiannon to buy them. She’s so far refusing to pay money to become part of the cult student fan base, but she’s perfectly happy to use John’s ticket to go. It’s only a matter of time before we initiate her, I’m sure. Especially when things get interesting and John wants to attend games, or Steven wants to use John’s ticket, like he did most of last year when John had to work.

Our boys looked good, but definitely have some work to do. Free throws, rebounds, shooting from beyond the arc, and playing careful to prevent turnovers and whatnot are just a few of the things I noticed in the first half. Ah well, they’re young, and it’s the beginning of the season.

We’ll ignore that Amelia’s and my fascination with them makes us scary older women. Anyways, from now until March, we reserve the right to be midly infatuated with some tall, lanky guys with great arm muscles.

And both my teams currently have a winning season!

Oh come on, 1-0 is still a winning season. Even if it was only exhibition.

Ok, sorry for the wimpish posts the last two days. Maybe this will make up for it.

I was off to departmental retreat for about 36 hours. Amelia and Rhiannon and I drove down together to the spa/resort/hotel place that we stayed at. It’s a great place, with the most comfy beds I’ve ever slept in. What with all 5 of those pillows, I only missed John a little bit!

Retreat was pretty good—lots of good talks in the sense of people doing well, although not all of them were really interesting. Sorry, I’m a virologist, and I have to admit that bacteria and parasites just don’t interest me too much. But our class did an awesome job.

Talks went all day Friday, with breaks in between and lots of food at said breaks. Dinner was especially fun when Rhiannon and I went to peruse the dessert table. My reference to the little lemon desserts as ‘lemon puppies’, and our discussion of what a ‘tartlet’ was, and subsequent definition of ‘tartlet’ as baby whore, led to some funny discussion of having puppies and babies for dessert. Woot!

The poster session was good, too. I actually had people come look at my poster and ask questions, which was nice.

Our friend Alexander did his part to provide entertainment by having about 7 or 8 beers from the free beer/wine supply and getting fairly well smashed before we even truly started the party that followed the poster session. (Scientists are good drinkers, by the way.) Amelia and I were his self-appointed caretakers for the evening. We mixed him plenty of vodka tonics, with admittedly much more tonic than vodka as the evening went on, and propped him up while he told stories from the homeland involving farm animals, namely cows and donkeys. He was also very adamant about the beauty of the Romanian gymnastic team on the balance beam. We tried to steer clear of PIs, and succeeded for the most part. He successfully got home and even lived to make it to my talk in the morning.

My talk actually went really, really well. It was similar to the one I gave back in July, but had some new information in it. I got a handful of questions this time, all of them good. It was different to talk in front of microbiologists, instead of simply a bunch of virologist who all work on the same family of viruses I do. They knew less of the specifics, and thus seemed to have broader questions, which resulted in some new perspectives. Woot!

The ex-lab member showed up right at the end of my talk. Rhiannon, Amelia and I couldn’t figure out (a) WTF she was doing there, and (b) if she did come, why only for the last half of the last day, and (c) why, fortheloveofgodwhy?, did she only come after our lab talks. I mean, talk about a slap in the face. Walking in the door just as your ex-lab finishes? Way to be not supportive AT ALL!

So, basically, we refused to acknowledge her presence, and she did look out of place. I know it’s kind of bitchy, but technically she’s not part of the department currently, and the only reason she is even sort of part of the department was that she basically took a leave of absence from the program before they kicked her out. I’ve been told by the two most senior people in our lab (outside of Dr. M) that she’s not welcome back, but Dr. M is such a nice person that I’m still worried. Anyways, I’m pretty mad at her, what with having to fix all the mistakes that she created and then didn’t check for when she did a couple weeks’ worth of work on my project before I took it over. Yeah, all the reworking I’ve been doing? The recloning, and the repeating of 2.5 years worth of data? All because of her. Gah. So. Screw her.

Moving on.

Rhiannon, Amelia and I fled after lunch in order to make it back to the Stanford football game, where we lost horribly to Washington. We actually left in the third quarter, heading back to our place for pizza, beer, and TV. We figured watching the Arizona St.-Oregon game would be more interesting, and more comfortable. Sam and Steven joined us, and we pretty much lazed around. The three of us girls passed out during the games, as there wasn’t a lot of sleep at retreat, let alone in the week leading up to it, what with preparations and all.

Eventually people left and I zombie-walked into bed for a full night’s sleep, and then a tasty breakfast this morning of banana pancakes at John’s and my favorite place. He’s refusing to let me do any work today, although I’m going to break the rules later and set up some overnight cultures later. Shh, don’t tell him.

By the way, did you all remember to set your clocks back?????

Also, Arizona’s basketball season opens in 5 minutes with an exhibition game against Concordia University. So what are you still doing here?

The logistics of working an Open Water class all weekend, combined with having to dog sit a dog who needed to be walked many, many times per day, plus having two cats that needed feeding and were currently residing at home 15 miles away was just about too much this weekend.

Bob is the most spoiled dog I’ve ever met. Period. He’s a very well-trained and well-behaved dog for the most part, but oh.my.goodness. was he spoiled. Doggie ice cream? I didn’t even know such a thing existed. But it was fun to take him out for walks and play with him a bit, and he’s very good about heeling and whatnot, so that was nice. It wasn’t so much fun to pick up the dog poo, but it’s gotta be done.

I enjoyed dog sitting, but I’ve realized that no matter how much I want a dog, I just don’t have time for one right now. John and I aren’t morning people, and we’re usually a little rushed in the mornings due to one too many hits on the snooze button. If I had to walk a dog in there as well, I’d always be late, or I’d just end up throwing it out in the back yard, and our back yard is just not big enough for the size of dog I want. And all the nights when we’re down south for scuba stuff, or in Monterey? We can leave the cats to their own devious devices for awhile, but we couldn’t do that with a dog.

*sigh*

The scuba class this weekend was also so-so. We had a great crop of students, all of whom really had their heads screwed on right. Friday night there was cake (by yours truely) for James F’s birthday. Saturday was class and pool, which was fun. However, Sunday, I ended up doing nothing but running logistics. I didn’t really get to work with students at all. That sucked big time. Alisa’s an AI now, and we had another DM helping us, and they, along with James F and Greg, got to do all the student work. Gee, thanks, now I know where I stand. Frankly, if I’m needed in the pool, I’ll be there to help out, but from now on, if all I’m doing is telling the students which instructor/staff member to go to, and telling the returning ones to go up to the shallow end, then I’m out. The other staff members can do that on their own.

It was kind of upsetting, and I tried not to let anyone notice, but of course James F did. In asking what was wrong, he asked if it was ‘the ususal’. Now I know I complain about the disparity in the way some of our staff is treated to him quite a bit, and he’s usually pretty good for a sympathetic ear. But the way he said it made me feel like I’d already pushed his patience. He’s told me to suck it up and not make things a competition, so I just sort of shrugged him off. If it continues, I’ll talk to Greg, but for now, I’m keeping it to myself and John, who was fabulous about it. I got a lot of hugs with backrubs. And I brought banana cake, which got a lot of compliments. That made me feel a bit better, too.

This weekend just wiped me out, frankly. Between class in the mornings, getting up early to take the dog on walks, the pool all afternoon, and then a late night Saturday at James F’s birthday party playing Halo3, I was about done on Sunday. By the time I got out of the pool, I was exhausted and a bit nauseous. Might have been due to not eating much all day, but when we stopped by our favorite Mexican place, the smells did me in and I ended up eating toast at home, followed by 11 hours of sleepy time.

I also didn’t go into work Sunday night to set stuff up, so yesterday there wasn’t much to do. I mostly sat around talking to Steven a lot, which was nice. He’s great for joking around with in a semi-inappropriate-but-still-fun-and-games manner.

After work, I talked with Amy (boy trouble, job hunts) and Mom (her classes, Amy, dad, Thanksgiving plans), read a bit, and ate my untouched Mexican food. And then got 10 hours of sleep.

I’m excited for the ocean part of the class this weekend, but also a little apprehensive. It’ll be the first time Alisa and I aren’t on the same level, and I’ve got to try to be okay with that because that’s how things are. I just hope I get to do more than simple logistics, because if that’s my role, I’m NOT okay with that. I know DMs are glorified babysitters, but Greg’s never treated us like that. We’ll see.

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