desoto_hia873: (Buffy and Giles - mangofandango)
The May 24th long weekend--which frequently doesn't fall on the 24th, and didn't this year--is supposed to be the first long weekend of summer in Canada. Last year, I spent most of the three warm, sunny days doing yard work, a task that I find pleasantly relaxing. I guess actually having a yard is still a novelty, so it hasn't become a chore yet. This year, though, we got two days of solid rain, and although it was intermittently sunny and drier today, it was cold. I pout.

On the upside, being stuck in the house meant that I had lots of time to get with the packing for Italy. I think I'm kinda, sorta ready, although I'm going to try to buy a better waterproof jacket tomorrow evening. I got completely soaked on Saturday morning while wearing my water-resistant jacket, and the forecast for Venice is rain. At least it'll be Italian rain.

The report that I've spent the last year and a half of my life working on is being released by the Ontario Minister of Natural Resources tomorrow. She's coming to Peterborough for the event, which means I have to get dressed up. There's nothing very Earth-shattering in said report, so I'm kind of wondering why she's bothering. As far as I can tell, government reports are primarily written to be read by other government workers. Which makes working for the government, well, not very exciting.

But at least it pays for trips to Italy.
desoto_hia873: (William the Bloody - awmp)
Really, still here, still alive. Just, well, kinda quiet lately. I've been going through a bout of dysphoria, which sucks, but sucks much less than full blown depression would. I'm pretty sure I know what's causing it, and there's not much to be done but ride it out.

At least spring is here--sort of. The snow is melting, anyway, although that happy fact is revealing a dog-created mess in the back yard. That would be the downside of Bella-ownership. But that and the fact that she's not quite finished her heat cycle are the only downsides of her. She continues to delight me everyday in every way.

My life in bullet points:

* The Loudest Woman In The World retired last Friday. Woot! Peace reigns at the office.

* Bella and I are entering a novice obedience and novice Rally-O match on Sunday. A match is different from an official trial in that it's just for practice and doesn't count for anything. Although it will determine if we enter the trial in two weeks' time. All good obedience karma gratefully accepted. :-)

* It is daylight for more than an hour when I get home from work now. It makes me feel like a chrysalis preparing to leave my cocoon. I want to spend time outside in my yard, see what survived the winter in the flowerbeds, plant tomatoes, prune dead branches from trees, and then burn them in our chiminea.

* Bella greeted spring on Monday by running across the semi-frozen pool and falling in. :-)

* My trip to Italy is fast approaching--I leave on May 22. Egad! I actually have to start thinking about packing and how I'm going to fit all my stuff into the one suitcase I'm allowed to bring. Anyone have any suggestions for suitably touristy clothes to wear in Italy in late May/early June?

* I finally got my copy of the cod book I edited during the summer of 2006. Holy mackeral, that sucker is thick! 592 pages! And I read them every one of them, three times.

* I'm oddly obsessed lately with the For Better or For Worse comic strip. I've read most of the strip in the online archive, and I can't tell you how many games of "Dig" that I've played. This is the sort of thing that my brain does when it's not quite functioning right.

* I'm really enjoying reading the entries at [livejournal.com profile] joss_las. The ones in this round are particularly good. I'm quite entranced by entry #3. When this round is over, someone tell me who wrote it!
desoto_hia873: (Mal - Someone To Carry You - 50thousandt)
We're having a snowstorm in southern Ontario today. A real honking huge Canadian snowstorm. Schools are closed. Buses have stopped running. I expect that the Toronto airport is a disaster.

One of my colleagues here at work can't ever remember our building closing due to weather, but our manager just came by and said that the director's given us permission to go home because of the snow.

I have a deadline on Monday. Whatever I don't get done today has to be done over the weekend. So I have nothing to gain by leaving early.

Phooey.

Shiny!

Dec. 14th, 2006 09:50 am
desoto_hia873: (iSnape)
The snorer struck again yesterday afternoon, and I just couldn't stand it anymore. So I hightailed it to Future Shop and bought myself an iPod. It's very shiny! I am listening to Van Morrison as I type this. :-)

I had to get MiddleJim to show me how to use it. God, I am so OLD.

Does anyone know where to get that iSnape icon that's been making the rounds?

ETA: Found it! Don't know who made it, though.
desoto_hia873: (Buffy and Giles - mangofandango)
There's a bit more noise here at work than I'm used to. My previous office had walls, and I now sit in a cubicle. I don't mind the conversations that take place around me--I can mostly filter them out as white noise. However, last week, the guy next door decided to take a nap in the afternoon... and snored. He did it again yesterday.

::tears hair out::

What is it with me and work neighbours who snore?!?

Also, the woman on my other side is the world's loudest talker, I swear. When she's on the phone, the entire floor can hear her.

So, I'm thinking iPod. A Christmas present to me. The only thing is: I have no idea how they work. Where do you get the songs to download into them? Can someone enlighten me on this new thing I think they call teknawlogee?

Sushi again today for lunch. Apparently, with me, PMS = raw fish cravings. Told you I was a freak.
desoto_hia873: (Bedhead Spike - eyesthatslay)
It's interesting how much difference your colleagues at work can make. My job with the feds in Ottawa was the most isolating work experience I've ever had. I could quite literally go entire days without actually speaking to anyone there. I don't think the people were especially unfriendly, but the design of the building left everyone squirreled off in their labs or offices doing their own thing and just not interacting much. Also, my supervisor tended to keep to himself--it wasn't unusual for me to go for weeks at a time without actually seeing him.

My new position with the provincial gov't (the provs?) is vastly different, to say the least. The two interns in my section regularly drop by for chats, to go for coffee or lunch, and we generally leave together at the end of the day. My new supervisor must have come by my desk at least half a dozen times today (sometimes with work, sometimes just to make a stray remark), is plunging me into training sessions and various meetings, and even played a small joke on me last week. He's a happy guy who likes what he does and it shows.

It's a lot easier to get up and go to work in the morning when the thought of being there is bearable.

Thanks to everyone for explaining the Beckett remark on this week's House. Clearly, I am not as well read as I should be.
desoto_hia873: (Sweet - mangofandango)
There is a sushi restaurant with take-out one block away from my office building. Guess what I'm having for lunch?

::dies from glee::
desoto_hia873: (Spike - Devil - awmp)
Thanks to everyone who wished me good luck on my first day in the new job today. ::hugs flist:: It went pretty well, even with the usual blur of new faces, forgotten names, and bewilderment at trying to figure out the organizational hierarchy and lists of brand new acronyms. You know you're in a government job when every other word is an acronym.

My previous job in Ottawa was very isolating. I was in a building behind the airport, which was close to nothing, and the arrangement of offices was such that there was depressingly little interaction with anyone. On a good day, I might have had a 30-second conversation with the guy across the hall; I'd go weeks without ever seeing my boss. New job promises to be much more social and is located right downtown. Today started off with a meeting where I was introduced to about 15 other people, followed by a coffee break (well, tea, for me) at a coffee shop across the street with a couple of women who also suggested showing me around downtown Peterborough and going somewhere for lunch tomorrow. A man that I know slightly through Jim works two floors above me and came down to say hi. It's so much more fun when there are actual people around, y'know? Also, I love my new commute. Driving from the west end of Ottawa to the back of the airport took about half an hour--twice that if the weather was bad or there was an accident or construction. Now I live in the north end of Peterborough, work downtown, and it takes me less than 10 minutes to get there.

I'm still not completely sure exactly what I'll be doing workwise, but at the moment, it's all good.
desoto_hia873: (William the Bloody - awmp)
Tomorrow is zee big day: start of a new job. ::gulps:: Apartment is 98% unpacked. Parking pass is bought. Clothes are laid out. Lunch is made. Groceries and laundry for the week are done. I think I'm ready. But I'm still nervous.

Also, GIP. This one's by [livejournal.com profile] awmp. Isn't it pretty?

I'm Free!

Oct. 20th, 2006 04:25 pm
desoto_hia873: (Buffy - Squee - myhearts_atart)
Last day at work today--whoopee!! I'm free! ::bounces::

Of course, now I have to start packing. ::slumps::

But I have 10 days to do that. And I will not start tonight. ::goes back to bouncing::
desoto_hia873: (Jayne - Waiting - soniablu)
The Powers That Be have a weird sense of humour, if you ask me. I started looking for a job in Peterborough about eight months ago. After seven months of sending resumes off and getting absolutely nowhere, I was offered the position with the provincial government that I've accepted. That happened on a Tuesday. On the Wednesday of that same week, I got home to find an email from the college in Peterborough asking if I was available to teach a couple of courses there. On the Friday, I had a call from Trent University asking if I was still interested in a library position I'd applied for several months earlier. Seven months of nothing followed by three offers in one week. Sheesh.

Then there's the saga of the little yellow house. I really liked it, but chickened out of making an offer on it two weekends ago. There was a minor bidding war between two buyers; Buyer #1, who won, backed out of his offer yesterday (he didn't like the fact that the floors weren't perfectly flat--it's a 150-year-old house!). The real estate agent sent emails out to everyone who had expressed an interest in the house informing them of this yesterday morning. However, as I can no longer access my home email account from work, I didn't see the message until around 8 pm. By that time, Buyer #2 from the bidding war had submitted another offer and it had been accepted. It's a conditional offer, so it may yet fall through, but that seems unlikely. ::sniffles::

In other news, I just got the estimate from the movers to haul all my stuff to Ptbo. Dear God in heaven--this little jaunt is going to bankrupt me.

Finis

Oct. 17th, 2006 07:23 pm
desoto_hia873: (Spike - Peek A Boo - tinkermellie)
I sent off the last of the cod book to the publisher today! Woot!

So, one less thing to worry about, which is good as I sit here surveying the amount of packing I have to do in the next 10 days. Just getting myself out of my office at work is going to be a challenge. I have so much stuff that I don't quite want to part with, but will more than likely never use again: my undergraduate textbooks (anyone need a quantum physics reference?), undergrad and grad course notes (which run the gamut from the aforementioned quantum physics to stuff on whales to air pollution), publications accumulated from several jobs, and several Spike calendars. I did go through my files and finally chucked (well, recycled) most of the photocopied journal articles that I used for my PhD thesis. 'Cause let's face it, I'm never going to read 10-year-old papers on isoprene emissions from bean plants again. They weren't that interesting the first time around.

I also went to my last choir rehearsal last night. I started Atlantic Voices four and a half years ago and was president until last year. It feels a bit strange to be leaving it behind--it's going to be a long time until I don't think of it as 'mine' anymore. The current president, who used to be my vice-president and was instrumental in getting the whole thing going in the first place, gave a little speech and presented me with a plaque and a handmade Newfoundland tartan scarf. I generally hate being in the spotlight, but it was nice and I was quite touched.

My time in Ottawa is drawing to a close. It's kind of weird.
desoto_hia873: (Colm Feore - desoto_hia873)
I heard on CBC on the way home that Bon Cop, Bad Cop has surpassed Porky's as the highest grossing Canadian film of all time. Thank God for that. Hopefully, it will also remain ahead of the Trailer Park Boys movie.

I spent most of my Thanksgiving weekend accomodation-hunting in Peterborough. If there's one thing that's guaranteed to throw me into a panic attack, that's it. ::quivers in a high-strung way:: The first apartment I looked at was, well, not quite dire, but certainly elicited an internal response of "Oh dear God, NOOOO!!!" I've been toying with the idea of buying a house and went to see a really cute place on Saturday, but the prospect of getting into a bidding war (two offers went in on it later that day) and my somewhat downpayment-deficient status resulted in an acute case of chickening out. I'm still kind of kicking myself about it--it really was a nice house: over 100 years old, beautifully landscaped lot that backed onto the Trans-Canada Trail, and quite the perfect size for me. And it was yellow. ::sighs::

I applied for an apartment in an old building that used to be the Teacher's College. It's a really nice apartment: 12-foot ceilings covered in punched tin, an exposed brick wall in the kitchen and living room, and hardwood floors. The landlord's mother-in-law showed me around and then patiently watched as I filled out the application. She told me straight out that she liked me and that I was just the kind of person she wanted as a neighbour--the antiquity of the building and its creaky floors means that kids inadvertently make a lot of noise, so she was glad to hear that it'd just be me and Lucy moving in. I hope she convinces her son-in-law of my general swellness because this was the month (of course) when I forgot to give the building manager of my current apartment more post-dated rent cheques and was therefore late in paying. Yes, the Peterborough landlord required and is checking references. ::facepalm::

If he doesn't approve me, I get to repeat the entire process again this weekend. If that happens, I might go house-hunting a little more seriously. Jim has offered to help with the downpayment and I'm currently filling out a pre-approved mortgage application. The little yellow house is undoubtedly quite sold by now, but presumably there are others.

I'm also meeting up with my new boss on Saturday afternoon and getting a tour of the building. I'd better schedule the panic attack for after that.
desoto_hia873: (Spike - Drama Queen - crimsonlady)
I guess that last post was a little enigmatic, wasn't it? I had the interview for the Peterborough job (that sounds like it should be either a movie title or a Firefly episode) a couple of weeks ago and thought I had a decent chance of getting it. Getting the call yesterday turned me from a Potential to a Slayer, so to speak, so I was feeling a little overwhelmed when I posted. I suspect that I'll be experiencing that feeling a lot in the coming weeks. I've been living in Ottawa for ten years now, which is pretty much the longest I've lived anywhere, so digging me out of my rut will take some doing.

I've given notice at work--my last day there is October 20. My tentative start date in Peterborough is November 13, which should give me time to move, unpack, etc. I'll probably find an apartment to rent there for the first six months, at least. As my sister advised me, it's probably better to get used to sharing the same city with Jim before trying to share the same house with him (and the Jimlets).

There are ups and downs to the decision, of course. Some of the downs include: moving farther away from my parents, sister, brother-in-law, and other extended family members (this is, of course, the biggest of the downs); taking a cut in salary (I won't exactly be living in poverty, but salaries outside of Ottawa and Toronto just can't match those within them); leaving my choir behind; etc., etc. The ups include: being closer to Jim (that three-hour drive up and down Highway 7 is getting really boring); being closer to other friends that live in Peterborough; being closer to [livejournal.com profile] poshcat's in-laws, which might occasionally result in being closer to [livejournal.com profile] poshcat :-) ; a job that is less data-crunching and more writing, which is what I am better at; and being closer to friends (Hi P!) in the Toronto area (Peterborough is a little over an hour outside of Toronto). Yes, some of those Toronto friends are LJ friends. And, yes, they did actually factor into my decision.

So, scary? Exciting? Panic-inducing?

All of the above.

Sooo much to do in the next month...

Urk

Oct. 3rd, 2006 02:53 pm
desoto_hia873: (Oh My Joss - wickedgoddess_)
I got the Peterborough job.

I just found out about 15 minutes ago. I'm not quite sure what to do now, though panicking seems the most likely option.
desoto_hia873: (Ahhh! - credit unknown)
One of the interviewers from last week called me this morning to tell me that he'd be contacting my references this week. Which I knew already as he'd told me that at the end of the interview last week. Still, I suppose it's a sign that they're actually considering me.

Or, at least, they were. His call led to the discovery that I'd put the wrong phone number on my resume. Yeah, that makes me look competent.

The thought that I might be packing up and moving to a new city within the next few weeks is FREAKING ME OUT.

::hyperventilates::
desoto_hia873: (Colm Feore - desoto_hia873)
  • Went to Stratford with Jim to see Oliver! last Friday. It was great fun and Colm Feore made a terrific Fagin (I knew he would). When the actors came out for their bows, the entire audience spontaneously booed Bill Sikes because he is teh ev0l. I suspect the poor fellow has been booed after every single performance, which just means, of course, that he has done his job well. He took it in good humour and laughed.
  • I learned while flipping through a book on the history of the Stratford Festival that Colm Feore's first role there was as Romeo in 1984. Several hours later, I realized that I actually saw that play with my mother. Me and Colm Feore? We go way back.  :-)
  • I've had songs from Oliver! running through my head for five days now.
  • I finally got my car back from the body shop. Total cost of repair was $6500. I suspect the cost for Jim's car was twice that. They must have disconnected the battery while working on my car because the anti-theft feature of my radio/CD player had gone off which made it unuseable. I didn't have the code to fix it with me, so had to drive three hours from Peterborough to Ottawa on Sunday evening in the dark and in silence. Boring.
  • Jim and I went to a Chinese wedding on Saturday--I wore my Serenity jacket from the London Prop Store. The wedding itself was very North American, but the reception was held in a Chinese restaurant. We were treated to a ten-course banquet which included suckling pig, jellyfish, and shark fin soup. I didn't care for the soup, but the jellyfish was actually not bad.
  • Joel Grey guest-starred on House last night. This pleased me immensely.
  • I have a telephone interview for a job in Peterborough tomorrow morning. I have to give a 15-minute presentation--which will be weird over the phone. I'm sitting here practicing it over and over again because the topic isn't all that familiar and my vocabulary keeps abandoning me.

 

Where?

Sep. 12th, 2006 05:08 pm
desoto_hia873: (Jayne - Ruttin' Hell - goldie_gal)
Well, this is a little weird.

Jim and have been doing this long-distance relationship thing for over two years now. I live in Ottawa; he lives three hours away in Peterborough. I've been looking for a job in Peterborough for nearly a year now, with little success (as evidenced by the fact that I still live in Ottawa). Peterborough isn't exactly a major metropolis--finding work there is tough for everyone, never mind those of us who are living in a different area code.

I had a call from the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources today saying that they'd like to interview me for a position next week. The catch? They want to interview me in North Bay. NORTH BAY. That's a five-hour drive to the northwest of Ottawa. It's only a slightly shorter drive from Peterborough. WTF?

Why the heck do they want to interview me in North Bay (a/k/a the back of beyond) for a Peterborough job?

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