Thoughts, Ramblings and Miscellaneous Conclusions

This last week was pretty great for me.  First off, it zipped by in a flash.  I love weeks like that, especially since the weekend is really becoming more and more my favorite time of the week.  It isn’t that I dislike work, it is that I dislike not being able to be home, control (or not) my own schedule and just doing whatever I want, whenever I want. 

Actually saying that expresses how really spoiled I am because I have a job where, for the most part, I am completely in charge.  From the beginning to the end of my time with kids, I pretty much call the shots.  I mean, it doesn’t really get much better than that. 

I don’t get to choose when I can show up to work though and sadly, in my location, I must report to work at 7:30 a.m.  This is the toughest part of my job, since I am not a morning person…well…at least not that way.  I also don’t get to choose the curriculum I teach or the expectations for achievement that the kids must meet or the meetings I must attend afterschool which erode my planning time, but I pretty much have complete control over how I structure my work environment, my schedule, my student’s schedule’s and so on.  It really isn’t that rough. 

The rough part of my life comes in trying to have a social life during the school year.  This probably wouldn’t be so tough either, if I didn’t also have to juggle the demands and taxi around the social schedules of four young people.  Then add to that the fact that people must eat and that ends up, somehow being my job.  If that alone wasn’t enough, groceries must occasionally be purchased, oh yes, and laundry done and a house cleaned.  I used to pay to have the house cleaned and the yardwork done, but that was before the divorce.  Sigh. 

Anyway, I am not complaining about any of this mind you, because while it is crazy enough and hectic enough, none of it is what I would consider difficult.  Well, at least, not until I decide to try to add a social life to the already overly full lifestyle plate I have going during the school year. 

So, this last week provided me the opportunity to get away from all that busy-ness for three nights and two days and drop into a different kind of busy.  I walked a million city blocks and that’s no small feat when you carry a laptop that is about ten pounds.  I ate great food that was healthy and which I neither had to prepare or clean up after.  I did really nothing I didn’t want to do.  Yes, I attended a conference and was involved in some pretty lengthy sessions where my butt got sore from sitting so long…but they were interesting and well worth my time.  Each one I attended was so relevant.  That alone is kind of amazing since most of these kinds of events can be a hit and miss endeavor.  This one was not.

The off times, after conference workshops, meetings with colleagues and dinners, provided me time to walk through the city streets three blocks to my humble lodging accommodations.  The wet misty rain felt refreshing and invigorating.  Of course, after two saketinis everything felt refreshing and invigorating.  Upon reaching the hotel room, I would slip into my comfy loungewear and slippers, curl up on the big armchair, turn on the laptop and begin my personal thinking on the white screen. Sometimes when I do this, I create more questions and puzzlements (is that even a word?) for myself than I solve problems, but this week was unusual.  I actually arrived at some conclusions for myself.

Here are my conclusions listed in random order and not in any particular order of priority:

  • I decided, I really don’t want to date or spend so much time on dating.  This isn’t to say that if someone really nice just appeared that I wouldn’t go out with him, but I’m certainly not going to put my profiles up and spend anytime checking emails or trying at all.  It is simply too exhausting, especially during the school year. 
  • I decided that the reason I don’t want to date is not because it has been such a disappointing experience…because it really hasn’t.  I’ve learned a lot about myself and about dealing with other people and I’ve grown and changed some after every experience.  This is a good thing.  The real reason I don’t really want to work so hard at it is this:  I have other things I want to do more than I want to do that. 
  • I really want to work on getting myself in shape.
  • I really want to work on getting my home in shape.
  • I really want to work on getting my yard in shape. 
  • I want to write.
  • I have some serious work to do spiritually, but I don’t really know what that means yet.
  • I was serious when I wrote my New Year’s resolutions and I aim to accomplish them, however late a start I’ve had.
  • I mostly want to enjoy my children when they are with me without feeling guilty that I haven’t called someone or don’t want to go out on a given night.
  • I can’t do any of these things and really devote myself to a “serious” relationship.  Most people are uninterested in just seeing me (or anyone) every other weekend and during the school year that is really all the time I have, unless I really start working on this house and then I won’t even have that.  So, the choice for me really boiled down to an either or situation.  Yeah, it would be great to have a guy who was interested in hanging out and doing projects together, but even when the I.J. and I tried that it was uncomfortable because I felt like that was letting him a little too far into my private world and I wasn’t quite ready to go there.  I know I’m not explaining that well but it was weird.  On top of that, most men I’ve met, seem to feel like I want to take advantage of their expertise, like all I’m looking for is a handy man instead of a companion.  Heck, I’d pay them to show me how to do the tasks I don’t know how to do.  But whatever, I’m tired of that little weirdness too.  I’ll just do the stuff myself and go get advice from online or the Home Depot or Lowe’s or something.  Seriously. 
  • I have places I want to go.  I can now completely see the possibility of going to these places on my own and loving every minute of it and I won’t have to haggle with anyone about which destination to choose first.
  • I  see directions I want to head with my career that are going to involve some extra time, effort and thought on my part at least at first.  This is also not something a deeply involved relationship can sustain unless the person is really willing to accept that.  Best probably to just not go there for now. 
  • Probably sounds like I am retreating and avoiding life, in a way.  Maybe this is true. I hope not.  I can really tend toward introversion and the recluse lifestyle, but I am not committing to never ever going on a date.  I’m just not going to work so hard at it.  At least, that’s how I feel this week.
  • Maybe, though, as much as I love to identify with Wonder Woman, the reality is I just can’t do it all.  And, since the stuff on the home and career front seems a bit more pressing than the stuff on the romance front (since there really is no stuff on the romance front), I choose that. 

Anyway, here I go to pull my online dating profiles completely down.  I am finally free!!!  And I am really, really very okay with that. At least, for this week.  😉

Things I Love About A City

I’m not talking about a little small place of 60,000 like I live in.  I’m talking about a city.  Tall buildings, tough parking options, paid parking, no parking, noise, congestion, people, a real university, public transit that you can actually use, and stuff like that is what I’m talking about.

Here’s what I love about a city:

  • When I go there I am usually alone.  No kids, no responsibilities other than myself.  It is difficult to not want to move there on that basis alone.
  • When I go there I usually stay in a hotel and that means no housework.  Yet another reason to want to move there.
  • People watching is over the top outrageous.  There is always something strange, bizarre or out of the ordinary to see and then to write about.
  • You have to park your car and walk.  It is best if you just don’t have a car, but parking and walking around is the bomb.
  • It’s busy in a city.  People are heading places and doing stuff.  It seems really important.
  • The options of fun places to eat and drink are greater and different than I would usually have access to.
  • For just a little bit, I can feel like I’m unburdened by the responsibilities I have for everyone else and imagine what life would have been like had I just stayed single when I was in my 20’s and live in the SF Bay Area and was making a load of money with no overhead.  Damn, I missed that one big.
  • There’s stuff to see.  Weird stuff, strange stuff, beautiful stuff.  Even if you can’t buy it, you can appreciate it.
  • I can do what I want, when I want, where I want with whomever I want and I don’t have anyone at the last minute screwing up my plans by saying, “Oh, yeah, mom, I forgot to tell you…I have rehearsal tonight, in 20 minutes and I won’t be done till ten.”  (And you couldn’t tell me that before I had those two glasses of wine?)
  • I can have those two glasses of wine without interruptions.
  • I can buy clothes and take them home and wear them and no one will recognize them from the hometown store display in the mall that they saw last week.
  • I have more than one small mall to choose from.
  • I can buy clothes, shoes, a purse and probably no one back home will have the exact one.  I hate when that happens.
  • I can meet a million new people and never talk to them again or I can if I want.
  • I can get up early in the morning and go for a walk around the many blocks. 
  • I love the early morning sounds of the traffic as rush hour starts up.
  • I love having the bathroom all to myself.  Though I love my daughter, she crowds me in my 2′ x 2′ bathroom back home when we are both trying to get ready in the morning.  Never mind that she has access to a much larger more spacious main bathroom for her very own use.  It’s a bonding thing I guess.  The city gives me a break from that noise.
  • Mostly, it is just different than what I deal with on a day to day basis which is the small town mentality of people who have no idea or desire to deal with other people.  People are a given in the city…and while there are jerks everywhere, people in the city seem more accepting of this fact than people who are used to having their own 5,000 sq. ft. on 20 acres and no one to bother them…ever.
  • Okay, and there’s also the absence of all the routines that I feel I am so lousy at:  dinner hour and clean up and laundry.
  • Being here makes me feel like…hmmm…maybe after all I could travel the world on my own.  I am so getting my passport this year.  In fact, this month.
  • The fact that I am here at all, using my own transportation is an absolute miracle.  Go back and read some of my earlier posts here or on my other blog at Welcome To CABsPlace (check my sidebar for the link, I’m rushing this post, sorry) for a review of the entire nightmare that was my last summer.

It’s stupid, I know.  I don’t get out much and that’s absolutely tragic but just being here gives me the opportunity to step away from the noise and pace that is my life, disappear into some different noises and a different (surprisingly slower, can you believe it?) pace and take stock of where I’ve been recently, where I am now, and which of those paths down the crossroads I want to commit to.  And it’s just really, really fun!

Okay, more later…this   important conference is awaiting my important arrival.  Gads!

It Appears I’m The One Going Silent This Time…Sorta

A short post tonight.  I’m tired.   I still have a ton to do before tomorrow, when I can hop in the car and travel 90 minutes north for my mini-vacation of sorts with The Beau.  We have plans to relax (I’ll probably collapse) Friday evening.  Knowing him, he’ll cook for me, I’ll eat, we’ll talk till wee hours of the morning (yeah, right). 

Saturday morning, he’s cleaning his garage, I’m going to grade papers.

Saturday afternoon it is a wine pairing session at our winery.  That will be fun.  I will actually be able to talk intelligently about something I know nothing about afterward.  Okay…I am becoming such the wine snob.  Not!  However, it is true.  I now know the difference between a $15 bottle of wine and a $6 bottle of wine.  And the $30 bottle?  Oh my! 

Then Saturday evening I do believe we have a concert he’s lined up.  I really like not having to be the one to come up with ideas for stuff all the time.  I dated one guy recently and he couldn’t make a decision if his life depended upon it.  I’m a pretty decisive person most of the time, but that one wore me out.  I was actually glad he went silent.  I can’t tell you how wonderful it is to be dating someone who is somewhat imaginative, creative and, yes, takes the initiative, oh, wait, and he communicates too.  Wow.  What a concept. 

I’m going to be behind on laundry when I get back, but…it will be worth it. 

Okay, I have to go.  I’m tired.  I have a big day tomorrow.  I probably won’t post much this weekend…for obvious reasons.  Ha!Ha!  It appears I’ll be the one going silent this time.  Okay, but I warned you in advance and it isn’t indefinitely.  So don’t be too unhappy.  I will be back with stories to tell. 

Sorry for the rambling, disjointed post, but I’m about ready to fall off this chair.  I’m going to be surprised if I reread this and there are less than a dozen typos.  I’m really that exhausted.