Monday, February 22, 2010
City of Lights. City of Love. City of Dreams.
I used to have very specific ideas about visiting Paris. It was never a destination I wanted to conquer alone; I was going to visit either with the love of my life or an old friend. Either way, with someone who I truly loved and who loved me in return.
Most people want to visit Paris in the summer. Not me. I always dreamed of a winter's vacation. Walking down a snowy street along the Seine. Watching the lights twinkle on the Eiffel Tower in the crisp winter air and drinking hot chocolate while looking out onto a busy Champs Elysee. Most of all, blowing out the candles on my birthday cake while a trio of waiters sang Bon Anniversaire a toi......
Life doesn't always mirror our carefully manicured dreams. I find myself perched on the eve of my much anticipated Paris trip. My travel companion is not my one true love; I am far, very far from that right now. Neither is it an old friend. She is in fact someone I have known for just about a year. We met in Australia and spent 5 days exploring the outback together. We are such opposites, but yet we seem to click.
And I am glad to be sharing this experience with her. Life has dealt us both some harsh blows lately and being in each other's company I hope will help us both to learn from each other, and to help each other with the healing process.
The rules and the players have changed, but the destination remains. One way or another, Paris is going to be a memorable experience. Because we will be there, and we will make it the Paris of our dreams.
Friday, February 19, 2010
But something made me pause. In a mere week I was about to descend on the fashion capital of the world, Paris. There was no way I was going to make my entrance into mainland Europe looking like something even the cat wouldn't drag in.
And so, I have tentatively stepped upon the road to transformation. In heels of course!
Update: I had suffered through DQ's birthday party in these heels, but thanks to my week's regime of stretching them out with fluffy socks they were super comfy (ok, more like moderately bearable) for Saturday night's festivities. *heel click in glee*
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
When I finally set aside the notes and invoices from the ball, and began to think about the birthday, I knew one thing was for sure; no way was I going to spend the day cooped up at the office... or even at home. That would be just too sad, even for someone who has sunk as low as I have!
A quick scan on the interwebulator told me that Stirling Castle was having a bunch of special exhibitions and my handy-dandy yearly subscription to the Scottish Historic Society was not only going to get me into the castle for free, but also into all of the exhibitions at no extra cost! With that sweet a deal on the table, how could I not go???
And off I went. And what a glorious day for a trip to a medieval castle. Not because it was a clear and sunny wintry morning, but rather a cold and clammy day with the mists swirling low down on the hills and all around the castle; perfect for a visit into history.
Things warmed up a great deal later that evening when I met Beans, VBF and her husband for dinner at a Brazilian restaurant in the city centre. Glorious food, great laughs and the company of good friends; all ingredients for a very special birthday celebration.
The evening was particularly enjoyable since earlier on I'd received a phone call from the elusive Boss Man. Apologising profusely for not getting back to me earlier, he explained that although he had indeed dissolved the company and the partnership at Easterhouse, he was starting up a new company under a different banner and that far from being unemployed, my services would be very much needed to get things going and done correctly from the get go. Suffice to say, there was a huge sigh of relief at my end of the line! He was getting things sorted out for a new office location this week and would get back to me with information on starting next Monday. Same arrangement as before, same rates... just different location.
I went off to dinner feeling much MUCH better and ready to celebrate for more reasons than one! The pals did not disappoint and it was a simply lovely evening out. And the celebrations will continue this weekend with drinks at a local hot spot and then next week..... PARIS!
29 has begun well. I pray that it will continue as such. Dammit, I need a good year!
Sunday, February 14, 2010
About half way through dinner, he leaned in an said to me in a conspiratorial whisper, By the way, don't go in to work on Monday. I've decided to liquidate the company since the deal with XXX fell through and its not worth staying in Easterhouse anymore.
I learned a little more than I'd bargained for. That as of that minute, I was probably unemployed once more.
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Except this time. Mr. Big Fat Rich Racing Stables Owner, who is the host of the event is, quite plainly, a Big Fat Mico Manager Pain in the Backend. He's wanting to oversee every little angle of the planning process and then looks over and double checks every decision that we make. Most tiresome really, and things take twice as long to get done now that everything (and I DO mean everything) MUST be run by Mr. Anally Obsessive.
Take for example, the seating plan. Always an ardours task since every single guest wishes to have a "good" table, as close to the dance floor as possible. Still, at the last ball, C and I managed to get it done without too much of a fuss. And I'd like to point out that everyone at the ball was quite pleased with their tables!
This time around, Fussy Pants made about a hundred changes to the plan not taking into consideration that the room can only hold so many over sized tables around the dance floor. Apparently, having waiters move around the room was an unnecessary inconvenience. Finally, after much deliberation he came back to us with the table plan yesterday and I got down to making up the lists for the volunteers and deciding who was to host at which table etc. It took me most of the afternoon, but I finally got the volunteer instructions and packages together - all 17 of them!
And then, on the way home I get a call from C and she tells me that Mr. Annoying-as-Hell has decided that he wasn't totally happy with the seating plan and that he was going to have another look at it.
That's when I started to look around for the shotgun. IMPOSSIBLE man!
Monday, February 08, 2010
With a mere 4 days to the next fundraising event, it is all systems GO for me right now. There are calls to be made, volunteers to be rounded up, prizes/donation to be collected and about a hundred different details and loose ends to be tied up before the big night this Friday.
And of course, let's not forget the all important details - the outfit!
At the last ball, I was all set to wear boring trousers and a borrowed top when a surprise package arrived from my aunt in Canada with an evening dress inside. She'd heard about my wardrobe crisis from my mum and dispatched a dress that I had borrowed from her before. Add sheer pantyhose, a nifty bolero jacket to dress it up and strappy heels and voila, we had a elegant ensemble!
This time around, I was slightly better prepared having bought a beaded chiffon sari when I was in Bombay that I knew would be PURR-FECT for the evening. Having decided to forgo my usual strappy sandals and instead wear my brand new black peep toes, some planning was required. Accordingly, I put on a pair of thick socks and prancing around the house commenced.
Rain Main (the flatmate) chanced upon me washing up dishes in my PJs and of course the socks-and-peep-toes combination. I'm practicing was my response to his startled look. He shook his head in a "whatever" fashion and moved on.
Then yesterday, he overheard me talking to Gingersnap on the phone. I was in the middle of chopping veggies for dinner, so had her on speakerphone. The poor thing was trying (unsuccessfully) to make me comprehend the complexities of eyeshadow. You put the darker colour on first and just off to the right of the lid, and then follow through with a lighter shade that's complementary, but not totally a match and then layer that with the thingybob with the dooddad of the other colour........
It's too bloody complex, I grumbled to her, and reminded her that I didn't even OWN eyeshadow. An eye pencil and lip gloss was the extent of my makeup range! I'll just have to get you done myself was her last exasperated statement as she rang off.
Rain Main looked at me quizzically.
You don't know anything about makeup.
You need to practice wearing heels.
You don't even OWN your own dresses.
I nodded in response to each statement.
He shrugged and walked out of the kitchen, turning back for one last comment.
You really are a crap girl!
I nodded again to his retreating back.
Friday, February 05, 2010
My Papa has cancer. In the esophagus, colon and liver. And God knows where else. In a way, its a blessing that it is so far progressed. There is no question of treatment, just a wait-and-watch game that we are all playing. The medical term, I believe is palliative care.
For the first time since Nana died, I understood just how lucky she was. Her death, although sudden was quick. Painless. She didn't have time to think about her mortality and ponder the question of the great what comes after. The whole thing was simple. In reality more painful to us, the ones she left behind.
Papa isn't going to be as lucky.
This is a senseless situation. And I find myself wishing for the unthinkable. Like for death to come quickly to him. For him not to have to go through months of torture to die in agony. If only wishes were horses, he would be safe now. And they would be together again.
Tuesday, February 02, 2010
- Starting immediately, I will be moving to a 3 day week. Boss Man agrees with me on the fact that there is crap-all work to keep me busy for 5 days.
- I will also begin learning the accounting and payroll processes ASAP. The aim is to purchase online tutorials and work my way through the same. Hopefully, these will have been designed well enough for me to figure everything out. I have until April 1st to master these new skills!
- In April, assuming that all those new contracts will come in as planned, I will move back to a full time basis with a salary increase for the added accounting and payroll duties.
- With reference to current pay, of course I was cheeky and asked if I would continue to get paid for a 5 day week as I pointed out that the studying that I would be doing in the off time would be effectively FOR work. Boss Man agreed to pay me for 4 days and cover travel expenses. Not a bad deal, I thought.
So, that's the plan for the next wee bit. (note the use of Scottish terminology!) Hopefully, things go well with picking up the accounting process. And so, the hunt for the p/t job begins as well. I'll keep it simple - grocery stores and local shops in the neighbourhood. Lord knows I don't want to be travelling hours in another direction for minimum wage!
My volunteer work with the charity goes on. We are neck deep in preparations for the next big fundraiser event (another black tie ball) that will take place on February 12. It would be so PERFECT if the charity would just offer to hire me on p/t. But.... that's just wistfull thinking! Still, its not all that bad a situation and I hope that things will work out. Eventually!