Sunday, April 13, 2008

Happiest Place On Earth...seen in fuzz

Last weekend me, Kate, Hilary, Melissa and Christine took a little road trip. On Friday we drove down to St. George and stayed in the St. George house. Saturday morning we woke up and watched the first session of conference. We lounged around the house for the afternoon and then watched the second session of conference. (I did my best to stay awake for the second session, but was less than successful.) We took a shopping trip to TJ's where I bought a new shirt which I did not need. When we got back from TJ's Christine was making us salmon burgers and watching "Disturbia". Hilary and I had never seen "Disturbia" and we were deeply disturbed. The salmon burgers were delicious, but the movie left something to be desired - calmed nerves. Oh, I forgot one thing. On Friday night as we were driving to St. George I tore one of my contacts. I didn't have a spare pair and I didn't have my glasses. When we got to St. George we looked up Eyemasters which is where I get my contacts. There wasn't one in St. George, but there were a few in Vegas. We didn't make it to Vegas in time for me to get a new pair so I just went without contacts. My eyes aren't that bad so I didn't think it would be that big of a deal. We got glammed up and headed to Vegas around 10:00 on Saturday night. We were the typical car full of young ladies making the Mecca trip to Vegas to dance. Jewels, hairspray, sparkles and loud show tunes blasting through the car speakers. It was great. We went to the club in the Stratosphere. Because I'm not a dancer, I initially just stood back and observed the dancing. Everyone was very entertaining, especially Melissa. A few people approached me concerned that I wasn't having a good time because I wasn't dancing. I assured them all I was having a good time, I just didn't dance. Eventually I did loosen up a bit and danced some. It was a great time. We didn't get back to St. George until almost 5:00 am. Sunday morning we woke up and watched the first session of conference and me, Hilary and Kate headed to LA, and Melissa and Christine headed back to Salt Lake. (My head progressively started to hurt more and more without being able to see things clearly.) We stayed with Hilary's aunt and uncle in California, and they were just fantastic. They had a really great dog named Tess. She was my favorite. Monday morning we woke up early and drove about 40 minutes to Disneyland. We went on all the best rides at Disneyland and California Adventure. I just love those places so much. It wasn't too crowded so we were able to ride all the rides we wanted to. By evening time my head hurt so bad I couldn't even keep my eyes open. I bought some Advil and drank a coke and walked around staring at the ground so I didn't have to see things in fuzz. We stayed until the park closed at 11:00. On Tuesday morning we woke up and got ready to head back to Salt Lake. I locked me and Kate out of Hilary's aunt and uncle's house and I had to break in. Luckily Tess didn't seem too concerned. The drive home was long, but we survived with Kate and Hilary taking turns driving. I either laid in the back seat or sat in the front with my eyes closed. It was good to finally get home, but it's always hard to leave the happiest place on earth.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

I Heart NY

I had to go to New York this week for work. I have only been to NY once before and it was just for one day so I don't really count that. So after this trip I have decided that I heart NY. Even though I was there for work I had such a good time. I was there for New Hire training. Even though I have worked there for over a year now I missed all the previous trainings. I wasn't sure which of my fellow Salt Lake colleagues would be joining me, but I was pleased to find that two from my same department were there as well. We stayed at the Hyatt in Jersey City, but it was right on the Hudson so the view was spectacular. We got there by about 5:00 on Monday night so we had time to go into the city. We saw all the regular sights: Times Square, Madison Square Gardens, Empire State Building, Crystler Building and others which I can't remember. We did pretty good navigating ourselves around the city and I was happy to discover I could have such a good time with coworkers whom I had not met before that day. On Tuesday we went into the city for our meetings. The office was right on Wall Street so we got to see the New York Stock Exchange (pictured here with the flag) and the Bull. The training was long, but ok. I met some pretty great people from all over the country. That night me and three of my coworkers broke away from the group and went to China Town. I wasn't as impressed with the NY China Town as I was with the SF China Town. It was also really cold and I was in heals so that may have influenced my decision. We went back towards the financial district for dinner and ate at this really cool steak place. The signature steak was $79! It was a good thing everything was expensed to the company. On Wednesday we went to more training. This day was less exciting. We had cocktails in the evening with the big-wigs. Unfortunately no mocktails were available so I went with a soda. That night we ended up going to dinner with the entire Salt Lake group. I think there were 14 of us. We went to an Italian place by our hotel in Jersey. It was a riot. I am so grateful I was there with a good group. I tried to talk everybody into taking an all night trip to Atlantic City. The cars were coming to pick us up at the hotel at 5:00 am to take us to the airport. We finished eating dinner around 10:30 and Atlantic City was 2 hours away. We could sleep for 2 hours on the way out there spend a few hours and then sleep 2 hours on the way back. Then we had 4 and a half hour flight back to Salt Lake. That would have been plenty of sleep. I had a few talked into it, but when it came down to it they went on the responsible side and we just went back to the hotel. I woke up at 4:30 am and the cars came to pick us up. When we got to the airport I realized I left my wallet and my iPod in the safe in the hotel. After quite a few conversations I finally made the hotel understand what I needed. One of my coworkers was coming back that night so I just asked him to pick it up for me. It was such a good time and I loved NY, but I decided I'm way too soft to work in the offices there. I know I would just end up crying all day. It was very exciting there and the buildings are beautiful, but I definitely don't think I could handle the faster way of life like that.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

"Sex Noises"

I moved to a new apartment on Feb. 28th. My lease was up in my old place and both of my roommates are getting married so we all split. (Ironically, we all moved within a few blocks of each other. Baby steps.) I live in the Avenues now and I love it. It's an old building built in the 1940's so it has a lot of character. This is my bedroom, kitchen and front room. It's really small, but I like it a lot. It's on the 4th floor and of course there's no elevator so moving in was a workout. I recruited some burly young men to move the heavy stuff and they did an excellent job. I bought a new TV as shown (I think that's Young Guns" playing) and I underestimated it's weight, or I overestimated my own strength. The guy at RC Willey put it in my car and when I got home I realized there was no way I was going to be able carry it up four flights of stairs. I couldn't even put my arms around it. I sat down on my bumper and weighed my options. 1) I could call someone and ask them to come help me, but I didn't want anyone to have to drive all the way to my apartment just to carry a box up some stairs. 2) I could leave it in my car until I was going to be with someone that night. (Considering my friend Hilary's car was broken into in that same parking lot not too many weeks ago, I decided this probably was not the best option.) 3) I could knock on one of my neighbor's doors and hope that they were not 96 years old. Or 4) I could ask one of the young men congregated outside of the church across the street. I decided to go with #4. I'm sure the young men were scouts and service has got to be one of the scout motos so they couldn't say no. As I ran a few things up to my apartment before going over to the church I realized the scout leaders might be a little suspicious of a young woman asking some young impressionable men to come inside her apartment, but I figured I would try to look as innocent as possible. By the time I got back downstairs the scouts were already inside the church and I didn't want to go chasing them for assistance. I was back to square one sitting on my bumper. Then a man pulled into the parking lot and started unloading groceries from his car. He was young and looked as though he could handle half the load of my TV. I walked up to him and explained the situation. He of course said he would help. He had a beautiful voice from the second he opened his mouth and I soon found out that he's an opera singer. Of course. We took the TV up to my apartment and when I opened the door and everything was put away and arranged, my helper was amazed that it was all put together after living there for only a day and a half. I just told him I was annul about order, which is true, but I didn't tell him that I also don't sleep, which gives you lots of extra time. Which....brings me to my next subject. I moved in on a Thursday. I put a few things away that night, but not much. Friday I went to work and then out and by the time I got home it was pretty late...around 1:00 am. Not thinking of the time and how moving furniture around on wood floor and pounding nails in the wall might wake up fellow tenants, I went to work putting things away. I did this for a few hours and then went to bed. When I woke up on Saturday morning I had a note under my door. It read as follows: "Will you please quiet down? Your sex noises are ridiculously loud!!! I can hear you through ear plugs, and I'm not a light sleeper. You already know you wake me up. Please, again, I'm asking you to quiet down." My initial reaction was feeling bad that I had been so loud, and I do still feel bad about that, but after some thought I realized how funny it was. My "sex noises." That was the best part. Needless to say, I have tried to be a bit more quiet to avoid any further contention.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Indian Summer

I just left the office for the last time here in Bangalore. It was actually really sad. I didn't want to have to say goodbye to my new friends. Even though I will still be working with them everyday, I won't see them everyday, and that's what makes me so sad. My flight leaves in a few hours so I am just tying up loose ends and getting everything packed. I have had a wonderful time here in India and I am very sad to be leaving. There definitely are comforts of home that I miss, but once I am home I will miss so many things about India. The last two months have gone by so quickly and I almost wish I had more time here. I would love to come back and hope to have the opportunity to do so soon. I'm not sure that Alyssa and Heidi would agree, but if you ever have the opportunity to come to India, definitely take it!

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

The Pink City

On Sunday we spent the day in Jaipur, which is also called the Pink City. All of the buildings are pink. I'm not sure why, but they are. We went to another fort called Amber Fort. It is also called the Pink Palace because it is pink as well. The fort sits up on a hill so you can either walk up the hill or ride an elephant. Considering the heat of the day and the fact that riding an elephant is really great, we opted for the elephant. It was great. My feet got spit on several times, but the ride was well worth the soggy socks. At the entrance to the fort there were vendors all over. They were worse there than anywhere else we had been. They were really aggressive and of course very dishonest. Once we finally got into the fort I felt like we had been through a car wash. It was nice to be in such a beautiful place without all of those men calling you Madam and yelling at you. The fort wasn't quite as extravagant as the Agra Fort, but it was still beautiful. We decided to go shopping after the fort, but our driver took us to a quick detour at an observatory. It was pretty lame and we weren't really sure what we were supposed to do there so we didn't stay long. Walking out of the observatory we came across some snake charmers. As much as I don't like snakes that was definitely a highlight of the trip. While we were watching them some government men walked behind us and the charmers stopped playing their flutes. We weren't sure if snake charmers are not allowed, but they started up again as soon as the government men walked by. Melissa actually touched one of the snakes, but I stayed as far back as possible. We went shopping for the rest of the day and experienced much of the same aggressiveness that we found at Amber Fort. They've just got a different style in Jaipur. Melissa and I flew back to Bangalore that night. I was grateful to get back to pleasant weather, but I didn't want to leave Alyssa and Heidi. It's a good thing I'll be home in 2 days.