Thursday, April 28, 2011

Surprises are just not my thing

Chris is amazing at planning surprises. A few years ago he planned a trip to NYC and didn't tell me until after I had packed my bags.  He's always planning fun dates and activities for us to do together. I like being surprised--within reason. It's not that Chris likes keeping things from me, he's just really good at creating suspense. 

I on the other hand, have no talent for creating suspense or surprising other people . . . Chris specifically. Today is his birthday. And I've been thinking about it for months. I've done research on restaurants and clubs and come up with a few great ideas . . . all of which I was scared he wouldn't like. (Yes, I realize this is my problem.) So, instead of creating suspense and just going with it, I decide to tell him my struggles and doubts about my plans. He then becomes a part of the planning process and joins me in the research (this was suppose to be my gift to him . . . a night out . . . but now he's doing the planning just like a regular date. ugh.)

And last week I realized that I still had to figure out what to actually give him. I had kept a list of things he's mentioned he wanted since last year, you know, the things that just come up in conversations. But, he had sent out a list very similar to his family, so I was stuck again. 

And then we both got sick and my shopping weekend turned into a lazy/rest weekend and as of yesterday afternoon I still hadn't gotten him anything. (That is cutting it too close for my liking). Last night, I decide to get on ebay and order the gift I had decided to get him . . . but I have to use his account because I don't have one. As I'm paying for the gift on ebay, I notice that he actually won/purchased a very similar thing himself the day before . . . what!?!? So, I ask him, "Uh, honey, what's the difference between 'this' and 'that'?" He says they are basically the same, but he'd still like having both. Then he says, "Why, is that what you got me for my birthday?" BINGO! Last chance at a belated surprise FAILED. 

This is exactly how the last three attempted-surprise birthday presents have gone down. Granted, he's always liked how we spent the day and what I got him, it just wasn't a surprise. Guess I'll try again next year!

253.5 miles -- having to take shorter walks since my feet
are not entirely better yet.

Friday, April 15, 2011

A New Day--A New Job (sort of)

Change. I like change. I get a little ansy once I've been in one place for too long. It seems like my life has gone through some sort of change every year since High School. New schools, new jobs, new homes, new friends . . . you get the idea.

Well, life is changing again! This change is probably quite minor but still a change . . . and a good one!  This week I started training for a new position within JFJ. I had applied for the merchandising manager position a few months ago and they decided to hire someone a little more qualified . . . but they offered to train me in at the same time to be her "back-up" and work with her on a part-time (once a week) basis. Yeah!

So, although I don't know exactly what this "back-up"/part-time position looks like completely, I think I will really enjoy it. I've only spent a week in the department but already I feel like its a great fit.  I'm really excited for what I can learn in this new role and what I'll be able to do with it.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

An Eventful Evening

Last night was different. After work, I attended a "Christ in the Passover" presentation given by the Executive Director of Jews for Jesus at a local church. Let me just say that if you have a chance to go to one of these presentations (the missionaries travel all over the U.S. during April) please go. It is worth your time--trust me.

Afterwards I was headed home by my normal route. It was after 9 p.m. and apparently the buses don't come as frequently as they do during the day. This made sense; it was just a little more inconvenient for me than I was anticipating. So I decided to get a few more blocks of walking in and walked to the next bus stop (I do this because I can't sit and do nothing and figure this way I'm at least getting exercise). At the next stop I decide just to wait for the bus, it should only be 5 more minutes. The bus comes, I get on and notice that the crowd is comletely different after dark. This makes sense too in some respects.

The next thing I know, everyone is getting off the bus, and I am confused. I also get off the bus and as I take that last step down, I hear the bus driver repeating, "This is my last stop" to those that haven't left their seats yet. I am really frustrated. We've only gone 4 blocks and I have 13 left to go before I'm home. Its dark, its windy and cold, and I just paid the $2 fare to go 4 lousy blocks (yes, I'm cheap enough that losing $2 upsets me).

I decide to wait for the next bus. I really don't want to walk alone in the dark; it just doesn't feel that safe. I wait with 30 other people. As I wait and see that the next bus isn't coming any time soon I start to get more upset. I start thinking about the lack of service the city has after dark and how wrong that is. I'm angry that they can just end a bus shift right in the middle of a route with no warning to its passengers. I'm angry that now I won't get home until 10! I'm angry that this whole situation inconvienced me a lot more than it should and I'm angry that I turned down someone's offer for a ride home from the church thinking this would be no problem.

Well, the next bus comes and the driver says, "Sorry, this is my last stop." WHAT?!? Alright, now I'm just fed up. I begin walking--so does everyone else. After walking eight blocks I can tell something is going on. There are four empty busses pulled over and up ahead there are flashing lights. . . a lot of flashing lights. After walking a little further I see a camera crew and news van. And then a little further I see fire trucks. Not just one or two, but like ten or twelve! Ladders are raised up to one of the buildings. . . there's not a single light on in the building, its pitch black and it sort of looked like the windows are missing from the top floor. There were so many firefighters--at least fifty. And there are at least a hundred people standing outside watching. It's hard to get through the crowd. I couldn't see any flames or smoke but I could smell it.

I had two thoughts as I walked through that crowd. 1) I need to get home and watch the news to find out what happend and 2) I should not be angry, I have a home that isn't on fire right now, I should not get so upset when my plans don't happen as I wanted. I am so completely self-absorbed and selfish. Okay, maybe that's more than two thoughts, but you get the idea. I was convicted of my attitude.

I finished the walk home and was a little awe-struck that this was all going on a mere four blocks from my home. This is the first news-worthy event that has happened in my neighborhood since we moved here (as far as I know). I was a little shaken up.

It turned out that three apartment buildings had caught fire; the wind was pretty nasty and as you may know, the buildings in SF are built close together. I had been upset that I had to wait for the bus in that wind, but these poeple had to wait hours in the wind while they watched their homes burn.

I'm lucky I could say I was home by 10 and fast asleep by 10:30 in my comfortable and warm bed.

If you're interested in what happened you can read a news blog about the fire here.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Getting Back on Track-- A Walking Update

I'm sorry to have to admit that I fell off the map with walking during March.  It's not that I forgot about it, or ignored it, or just refused to do it. My feet just couldn't do it anymore. And the weather didn't help. I heard somewhere that it rained for 20+ days in a row in San Francisco during March.  Ugh. I seriously should have purchased those rain boots back in December.

I have been seeing numerous doctors, physical therapists and retail-shoe-store owners trying to figure out what is going on with my feet (tingling, numbness, general discomfort). We still don't have any answers, but I do have some relief! I did end up buying new shoes and new insoles (not the custom-made ones I mentioned last month). And let me tell you, I was practically pain free since then!

I've gotten to take my normal walking-route home three times since I bought the new shoes and overall, I'm feeling much better. I still think there are a few issue that need to be worked out with my doctors so hopefully we can put an end to this problem once and for all very soon.

The weather has also greatly improved (in my opinion) this past week.  The sun can be a great motivator to get outdoors and exercise I little.

So, it looks like I may be able to get back on track with my walking goal! I was really excited to see that I walked 200 miles by the end of the day on April 1st.

215.4 miles completed in three months! That's half way to Disneyland form here!
Only 484.6 left to go