Monday, May 14, 2007

One day older and deeper in...

You all are so sweet... so many well wishes in my inbox over the past few days. And, oooo, I'm excited for my surprises from noman over at My Secret Life.

Please don't take offense if I compile my thanks and updates here. I'm short on time right now... but long on appreciation and love for yous all.

The Paris-London trip was quite the quick jaunt overseas. I'm still pulling my pics together but we did a sort of slideshow at my parents this weekend with my sister's pics and mine on their new HDTV thing. Very diverse viewpoints and great snaps. We spent the first 24 hours just travelling. Plane, train, tube, train [under water!], metro, walking to the Paris hotel. You'll get to see a snap my sister took of me just as I popped out of the metro underground into the plaza in front of the Louvre and I've told a few that that was the definitive moment I realized I wanted to go to school there.

We ate at a nice, out of the way corner restaurant where no one really spoke English and I got to try my hand at French. Freshman year of HS in Argentina I took a French course from Madame Bousquet who taught us with a proper Parisian accent and those words and lessons have stayed lodged in my brain. I did quite well, and the old label that the French hate Americans didn't seem to ring true at all. My entire time there I was well-received - from the bus conductor to the small sandwich shop owner to the hotel employees to friendly passersby.

London wasn't quite as impressive for me and the school program/Open Day less so. I'm grateful that I went over and checked them both out because it cemented my decision to go to Sciences Po for sure. Yes, I am going to Paris. Yes, it still feels foreign to say out loud. Yes, it's totally unreal and doesn't feel like me who is planning this or doing this, but some alien occupying my body and saying these things.

I told my family today that I wish I could just be more simple, more simplistic. It would make things a lot easier. But I'm not one to be content to just work a 40 hour work week in Shopko. Listening to "This American Life" in the car on the way home today - about the historic change in the Amer Psych Assoc no longer qualifying homosexuality as pathological - I almost felt I could compare my situation. I can't help but make difficult decisions in my life. Wouldn't we all just wish to be normal, easy, happy, simple? Unfortunately we are who we are and must live up to that or struggle eternally with unhappiness and yearning to fulfill our destinies.

I'm not sure any of this writing is making sense.

There was no sexy fun in Europe. In fact, we both got sick by the end of the trip. When I got back I was still sick and then got my period. No sex for about 2 weeks now. I'm kind of starting to lose my mind but sex has taken a back-burner to all these plans and finishing up my Stats and Econ. I finished out my Econ final last week [and had a very strange conversation at the end of the class with crazy cat lady professor as I was the last one out of the room - the conversation involved her recommending some weird book by some woman who could channel some dead guy named Seth]. My Stats final is tomorrow afternoon. [Although, the Monday after my trip I had my last Stats exam and got an unprecedented 90% on it so there's hope for the final yet!]

Last week and this week at work I'm focusing on department interviews for my replacement. I haven't approached it as such as it still hasn't sunk in. Instead, I'm just going about it as interviewing someone new for our team.

No-name Joe took me out for an early b'day dinner last week. It was a weird day because I'd just seen James at the gym and was literally wiping tears when I saw him b/c I've really missed him so much and just feel rather alone in this whirlwind of decisions. But Joe bought dinner and gave me 2 really cool books, a small box of Godiva, and a handy Paris map. I told him I might cry when we're in Mexico because I've just been holding it in for so long. This is all very overwhelming.

Don't get me wrong. I'm thrilled, excited. But terrified. I've never taken out a loan before and to have to take out 2 or 3 for a total of perhaps 120,000$ is daunting. It's an investment. Yes, yes, yes it is. Instead of a house I'm getting a brain.

I spent this weekend and Mother's Day / my b'day with my family. It seemed apropos and my mum was happy. I still woke up forgetting it was my b'day. It's just kind of taken a backseat.

This week it's more interviews and me racing between Madison and Milwaukee to do so, a run up to another city to focus some work, a free Thursday for packing, Friday back in Milwaukee and back in time to meet up with Joe for the totally sold out and hot tickets for The Hold Steady, then we'll nap, jump on the plane that leaves at 6am for Mexico. I'm totally not sure what I've gotten myself into here but I'm sure it will all work out. Hurricane or sunshine, it'll be a needed vacation with no agenda but to see, feel, breathe.

And then I'll be completely out of money. Lord only knows how I'll re-coop in time to get my things out of my apartment by mid-August lease up, buy storage space, buy a plane ticket [one-way or round indefinite?], crash with my parents for a bit, get on a plane, get an apartment in Paris, feed myself, and start school.

Will there be any time for breathing ever again? Any time for my luxurious down-time of days spent with my hand down my pants? Any more binge drinking? Will I carouse on the town again? Or, has my age of innocence passed into a sultry, focused adulthood?

In ten years, I'm sure I'll look back and .....


a said...

... be amazed at how exciting this time was.

I remember when my life took an incredibly tumble up and over, and I woke up and found myself in NYC. I planned for it, and it still snuck up so damned fast. And it was a blast, too, of course.

It's easy to imagine you in Paris (or London, for that matter). Something about your tone for some time tells me you are hungry for big change.

And it's yours.

Congrats, happy early b-day, and enjoy!

Monster said...

Whoa, you're sure you'll look back in ten years?

The times, they ARE a'changing.

If anybody can roll with them, you can.

James said...

"Size matters, so does shape under new postal rates....

• New rates, shape, thickness guidelines begin Monday"

I know it's totally off subject. But isn't anyone enjoying all the innuendo with the post office right now?

hellboy said...

so fucking exciting! a part of me lives through you darling. This will be such a fantastic chapter. I'm reserving my copy now. First edtion please.

I'll watch for you at The Hold Steady. Silly rabbit, tripping is for teenagers, murder is for murderers and hard drugs are for bartenders.

noman said...

Wow! Paris! What an adventure it will be. With your new brain you'll be out of debt and into whatever career and living space you want in no time.

I'm so glad you're looking ahead 10 years. If I remember from cdoa v1 you weren't thinking past your 40th birthday (the original raison d'etre for cdoa). I think you described your future self pretty well - a sultry, focused adult. cdoa v11.

Be sure to visit Nin's house and Miller's cafes. I think we all hope to be reading about your new life and living vicariously through your prose.

All the best...