Well, the weekend went well. Saturday I met up with Erica and Adam and saw the latest exhibits at the CAM. Here is the two of them posing with a cow. It was nice to see Adam again and it was especially nice to spend some time with Erica. I had a good time talking to her.
After I left them, I continued my cow hunt throughout the Museum District . I walked a lot (my legs are sore today) and I had a lot of fun discovering on foot an area of the city I usually drive. Here are some of my favorite cows I discovered this weekend:
Half & Half
Hibiscow (& Adam)
Mooriachi and Maria Mooriachi
I only wish I had gotten up earlier because there were so many to see!!
My Saturday with the cows ended with a coffee break at Brasil's with my friend Gilda and dinner at El Meson (Cuban and Mexican food, interesting combination, isn't it?) with friends. This was the last time we woud see Gilda (the woman on the far left) before she moved permanently back home to Argentina next weekend. We had a good time but it was sad to say goodbye to Gilda. I wish her and her family the very best!
Now the weekend is over though and I must get to bed at a decent time tonight so I can maybe be a little less tired at work than usual tomorrow! Buenas noche!
The Mirror Project is an awesome site that I recently submitted some pictures to. Here is mine and here is Kenny's.
I love taking picture! :D It makes me content.
Two quick observations made while driving:
1) The weather is so wonderful that I've actually seen not one but two adult drivers stick their hands out the window just to feel the wind as they drive. It was pretty amusing but it's a testament to how beautiful the days have been this week.
2) A woman wearing a surgical mask drove up behind me this morning. I have no idea why she was wearing one. Just something odd to see.
I hope I see more of #1 - and I might join them! It's definety convertible and motorcycle weather! And the sunny forecast (low in the 50s, high in the mid 80s) is expecting to last till the middle of next week! Yes, this will be the mood-lifter I need!
Have a great Friday everyone!
Another good thing in my life - my best friend from high school has moved back into town! I wish it were under better circumstances but I think it will be good for her. She will finally get a chance to go back to school full-time. To show how some things change while othes don't, I dug up this picture of the two of us in high school on our senior retreat. ----->
Here is a picture of us now, a decade later...
Well - I've tried to stay in a good mood this past week but it has been difficult. And I don't like to whine or complain but this is a blog about my life so I guess it's an appropriate place, isn't it? This has just been a bad week physically and mentally and I have been reflecting back on it and trying to understand why. Below follows just my train of thought so please bear with me...
So why do I feel so crappy?
--- A four-day headache. This damn thing started Monday and it has never gone away completely. This is very unusual for me so I don't know how to deal with it. I pop some Advil and it works but I don't want to OD on them. Plus, I am a big believer in less medication - better for the body. If you don't know me personally, you should know that I don't get sick very often, about once or twice a year and each episode is very, very mild. This perpetual headache is bringing me down though, affecting my body and my mindset. It's horrible and I don't know what to do to make it stop. I think it may be a tension headache because my jaw also seems to be tight.
--- Muscle aches. For the past week I have also had an ache in the area around my right shoulder blade. Too much use of the mouse? I don't know but this is also bugging me since it's not getting better and it's creeping down my right arm and up into my neck. Throw in two days of exercise (bike ride and yoga) and I've managed to make the rest of my body ache today.
--- Listlessness. I have no motivation to do anything during the day, especially at work.
And you know what I think all 3 have in common? My job. You see, I really, really don't like my job. I don't care about it. So what do I do? Surf the internet all day, get absolutely nothing done. My brain is getting fried from inactivity. Sure, I have stuff to do but I am pretty much left alone. I do the minimum to keep things flowing, keep my customers happy and that's about it. Yes, I am looking for a new job (I have been for over 6 months and have 3 recruiters working for me) but no luck. The slowdown of the economy isn't helping either.
So, this is all hitting me hard and I feel helpless. The only solution I see is motivating myself at work so I can kick-start my brain again but I have no external reason to do so. I have no grand career move possibilities nor any hope of a bonus. Most everyone I enjoyed working with has left (no one wanted to stay). I have been one of the most loyal employees by staying here over 3 1/2 years. Only one person currently has been here longer than that and not by much! When I started there were 13 of us, now we are down to 8 and that doesn't take into account the huge turnover rate we've had on the current positions. I really need out. Ack!
Well, that was all the negative but I can lift the spirit of this post by stating that the only reason I have kept somewhat sane is because I have a good husband and good friends. I really haven't talked much about work with them but being able to go out and be with them has taken my mind off of the bad things here at work.
Another good thing is that the weekend is almost here so I can regroup my thoughts and rethink my career strategy. I've got lots of fun activities planned too! I'll be going on a double date with my husband and one of his co-workers tomorrow night, I am spending Saturday afternoon with Erica where we'll finally get a chance to really talk, I'll be continuing the cow hunt and I've got a massage schedule for Sunday afternoon. I'm really looking forward to it!! Only a few hours left here at work today! Yay!
Anyway, thanks for listening guys! I'll feel better soon. I just needed to vent!! It will help me re-direct my energies to getting back on track.
I finally updated my book group page, Even Texans Can Read! I had been slacking and hadn't even written the last 4 reviews. How horrible! But now all the books are updated and I can stop feeling guilty. Now on to other projects that need my attention...
Had a nice 8 mile ride with friends at Memorial Park (the 1 mile bike loop we ride is on the Southeast side of the park - that white double loop that is marked Picnic Area). Afterwards had dinner with the normal gang. The weather was perfect... now if I could only get rid of those dang mosquitoes! Don't they know they should be gone by now!?
This week's weather forecast for Houston thanks to Yahoo! Weather:
--- Today...sunny. Highs in the upper 70s. Northeast winds near 10 mph.
--- Tonight through Wednesday night...clear nights...sunny Wednesday. Lows in the mid 50s. Highs Wednesday in the lower 80s. Light north winds tonight...northeast 5 to 10 mph Wednesday.
--- Thursday...mostly sunny. Highs 80 to 85.
--- Friday through Monday...mostly sunny and mild days...clear and cool nights. Lows 55 to 60. Highs 80 to 85.
Doesn't this sound wonderful?!!! Fall is making it's way in. Yay!! My favorite season has arrived...
Bizarre Quote of the Day...
In reference to Bush having signed an executive order freezing Bin Laden's assets, U.S. Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice was quoted as saying: "We've got to go after the guts of this. This could be like a planaria. If you just cut off it's head and it regenerates another head, that's not going to be very helpful. So, while, of course, Osama bin Laden and his lieutenants are part of the story, the real part of the story is to choke off the bloodline of this network..."
This makes me very proud to be an Aggie. Students spread the word (via e-mail and word of mouth) and were able to organize a colorful tribute to the fallen Americans during the A&M vs. Oklahoma State University football game that took place Saturday. And, yes, we even won the game with a 21-7 victory!
Monty Python's Holy Grail - Lego Style!
(Thanks to Wil for the link).
An interview with Gonzo the Great. Muppets rule!!! I miss watching them...
Wow. We had a short but intense storm last night! It only rained for about an hour but when it did, the winds were blowing hard enough so the rain was no longer falling straight down. Water was even blown in under the door about a foot into the entryway. In addition to the wind and the rain and lightening, the power flickered out about 5-6 times (right in the middle of the Gilmore Girls, argh!) and dime to quarter-sized hail began to fall. I was actually getting worried about the window in the computer room becasue it was getting pelted hard due to the direction of the wind and where the window is. Luckily, the hail never got any bigger and my car didn't get damaged.
I really do love Texas weather, especially since I love storms so much! The power and fury of nature is so amazing to watch!
Here is an example of CJ's humor... he sent this link with the following description:
"Manfred Boehmel shares photo after photo of great tits, observes them during sleep and other activities, and tells everyone how they are laid. Thanks to search engines, more than 159,000 visitors have viewed the work of this tit lover since 1997."
See what I have to put up with it? :P
All is right again in my little social mircrocasm... Kenny has made up with CJ. Yay! Story behind it isn't really necessary - suffice to say that CJ pushed Kenny a bit far and Kenny wasn't too thrilled about it. A few days of tensions and concerns and they finally talked last night. I am very relieved.
Speaking of CJ, he got his 1st speeding ticket in his Saab yesterday. I am surprised it took this long! Yes, CJ is the friend who took us to Austin in his new Saab convertible. He had been drooling over this car for years now and he finally came across a deal he could not pass up on a 2000 Saab with only 800 miles. So has his sacred Saab now and he literally has let his hair down by cutting his long hair which had reached halfway down his back. He is even trying to return to proper society, if we'll let him back in, by replacing the white sneakers that were his hallmark with nice, black Doc Martens. Where has my CJ been abducted to?? Oh, hold on, it's still him... I am still hearing the same old bits. *sigh* What would we do for entertainment if he wasn't around? Maybe we wouldn't go to seedy bars like Lola's... or maybe we would see art flicks that were actually good... or maybe our fragile minds wouldn't be corrupted by some of the web-sites he sends out... Wait a second! Now why are we keeping CJ around???
(By the way, a Saab can reach 110 mph very smoothly without a blink of an eye and it's even more fun with the top down...)
A good BBC article that sheds light of the Afghanistan situation - Bin Laden's Afghan victims
And although this article is a few years old but it is still a very compelling read about the plight of the Afghan people - Buried Alive: Afghan Women Under the Taliban
As you can see, the Afghans are not our enemy. It's the controlling regime, the Taliban. Let's keep this in mind and educate the public who is so thirsty for retribution.
I was pleasantly surprised by my company's generosity yesterday. We are a Japanese company based in Tokyo and our Americas office is located in New York. Despite not having the best profits in the last few years and having to cut budgets, our New York office has offered $50,000 to the NY/DC Relief Fund. In addition to this, they have also offered to match employee contributions 2:1... For every $1.00 I contribute, they'll contribute $2.00. Wow. What a wonderful gesture. I will definitely being taking part in the campaign. Thank you NIAC!!
I was reflecting on this weekend and I realized that I had forgotten to mention my husband. For those of you who don't know us personally, he and I are very different in personalities and idealogies but still somehow manage to work well together. We also have a tendency to be very socially independent - by this I mean we often go out without each other or when we do go out it's always with a large group and we veer off into our own conversations. With a busy calendar, we often get so busy that we don't get a chance to really spend time together alone, away from the TV, the PC, the confines of the apartment...
So, this weekend was nice. He surprised me and called me up Saturday afternoon (we had different engangements that day, as usual) to invite me to coffee at my favorite coffeeshop, Brasil's. We sat and chatted about the NY tragedy and the politics involved while drinking yummy granitas outside on the patio. It was nice to spend time like that, without worrying about having to be somewhere. He also tripled his good-husband points by helping me clean up around the house and by being a wonderful trooper during my cow expedition.
Sometimes I lose sight of what I have in front of me... but rediscovering him is always such a delight! Thanks hon!
Hey guys - The Cow Parade has finally made it to Houston and I spent Friday and Sunday afternoon tracking some of the cows down and taking a picture of each one... Here is my photo album.
The cows can be found all over town and will be on display for the next month so I will be planning weekend excursions to find and photograph as many as possible. I'll update the album as I go along. Wish me luck - there are over 300 cows! Yikes!
Hello everyone - I hope your weekend went well. Mine was entertaining. Friday night Hanna and I drove to Kemah to meet friends at the Kemah Boardwalk. Kemah is near Clear Lake (where the Johnson Space Center is) and halfway to Galveston so without traffic, it should only take about 30-45 minutes to get there. At rush hour, it took us 2 hours. Yuck! We finally made it though!
The purpose of the get-together was to wish Melanie good luck on her new job since Friday was her last day to work with me. We were also celebrating Hanna's birthday which was Thursday. Here are some pictures from that evening.
Afterwards, Hanna and I went out on our own and hit a couple of bars - Lizzard's Pub and Prive' Lounge, my favorite lounge bar in town. We chatted, drank, watched people and had a generally good time just the two of us. Since it was one of the few times I wasn't driving, I worked up a nice, happy buzz...
Saturday afternoon I went to a friend's wedding shower. I have known Natalie since she was six and I was nine - we grew up only six houses apart. It was nice to see her since I hardly ever do due to the fact that she lives in Dallas. I am looking forward to her wedding next month. It should be beautiful!
My dog Ginger was so patient with me when I took this picture... I had tried this before but she would shake the glasses off within seconds. For whatever reason, this time she put up with me for five minutes while I took pictures.
OK - so she was giving me looks that said "Are you done yet Mom?" and "You really are a crazy women" but hey, it was worth it, wasn't it? It's just such a damn cute picture!!
---> Here is another one. <---
Please. Don't continue the hate. Don't stoop to the level of the terrorists. We are better than that. Let the authorities deal with the terrorists. Don't be stupid and try to take things into your own hands. Innocent individuals are getting hurt, just like the innocent individuals in the WTC and the Pentagon.
Wonderful article from The Miami Herald: "We'll go forward from this moment"
Well, despite the tragic events, our daily lives must go on and I did promise an update on the weekend in Austin so here it is with links to photos...
-- Firespinners. Wow! Double wow!! Their patterns were beautiful.
-- I still don't know how Betsy got into that latex dress but she looked great (and so did Karen & Dave)!
-- I have some beautiful best friends!
-- Red hair looks good on this guy.
-- Bunny ears are fun.
-- Are you ready for a Jack Attack?
-- Convertible Saabs are fun, but they sure mess up your hair.
-- Greg (with the kisses) is a great party organizer. Thanks Greg!
-- The sets spun were awesome and the dance floor got busy!
So, yes, as you can tell, I had a great time!! It was wonderful to see Julian, Jackie (the one pictured in the "Jack Attack"), Karen, Chris and Todd, Phil, Blake and everyone else there... I also finally got to meet Karen's sister, Erica. Hanna and CJ seemed to have had a great time as well... So when's the next one? I'm ready!
I've always liked this broadcast...
The Americans - by Gordon Sinclair ©
(I checked the hoax pages and did some research... the broadcast really did take place as it is written)
This looks fun and interesting. I am still debating on whether I should try it or not - maybe I'll add it to my Christmas wish list... :D
Fellow blogger Chris made some comments that I totally agree with...
"I am not a believer in Hate. and I pray that as Americans we don't concentrate on getting revenge as much as we do on taking care of each other. Hate is what caused this terrible tragedy."
I really don't have anything new to say that hasn't already been said on TV, websites and other blogs but I did want to paraphrase some statements that were made by David McCullough, an historian and Pulitzer Prize winning author, during an interview on CNN tonight (I am paraphrasing because there was no way I could get his exact quotes down)...
Mr. McCullough made the statement that this terrorist attack, which many have compared to Pearl Harbor, was actually worse in many ways. Today's attack was a) an attack on innocent civilians - the attack on Pearl Harbor was made against a military group, b) made during a period of peace - the attack on Pearl harbor was made during a state of war, and c) made using our planes carrying our civilians, essentially making these poor individuals an unwilling part of the weaponry used to destroy the World Trade Center that killed thousands like themselves.
"This is obviously an act of war that has been committed on the United States," said Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona. I agree.
In all honesty, right now I am concentrating more of my attention on the victims and survivors. Fuck the politics. There are more imminent needs in the next 24 hours.
Let's stay united, keep our minds straight and focus on the victims and the facts, not the inflamed assumptions and criticisms we will likely make in the upcoming weeks.
I am in utter shock this morning. While watching the towers fall I could only think of the casualties and tears came to my eyes. I am speechless. The nation is in mayhem. I hope there is justice done.
U.S. hit by terrorist attacks
Here is the photo album from this weekend:
"A convertible, lots of fire and bunny ears..."
The stories are forthcoming!
I'm off to Austin for the night. Kenny isn't able to go but I'll be going with my friends Hanna & CJ. Some old college friends are throwing a huge party so we can all get together (we live scattered around Texas mostly in Houston, Dallas or Austin) and I am looking forward to it. Hanna and I went shopping at The Galleria just for the ocassion.
In other recent and related news, CJ just had a major transformation by cutting off his extremely long hair and buying the Saab convertible he has been wanting for a couple of years. Anyway, I'll tell the story when I return but for now, I'll just say that we will be riding in style to Austin!
I must run now because we are about to leave in a few minutes but I'll catch you guys up when I return Sunday.
The internet is full of interesting people, like this woman...
Miss Genevieve: An elite independent social escort and private companion.
Somehow, in the process of trying to place an international call to a client in Mexico, I managed to change the settings on my phone to Japanese. Not only was the text on the screen in Japanese but verbal cues were even spoken in Japanese. After five minutes of listening to my co-workers' laughter, I called my Japanese manager over to help (I guess it's fortunate I work for a Japanese company). With the help of the phone manual and his ability to read the screen for me, we finally got it back to English.
It was a pretty funny episode... but now my co-worker, Melanie, won't let me near her phone. I just think she isn't adventorous enough. Who knows what other possibilities our phones may possess that we have never explored?!
Lesson for the day: There is no word in Japanese for "voice-mail".
Hee, hee again... For those of you who know me personally, what do you think of my new little "StorTrooper" in the right column? It was the closest I could get to making it sort of look and dress like me... The hair is a bit long but it will do!
A friend sent me this article today. It's what I've been saying all along - people need to give Houston a chance! It's just not as bad as people make it out to be!
City's leaders on a quest for some R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Efforts aim to change Houston's image
I'm finally back! We made it in around 8 PM... the traffic was fine but the rain storm we encountered was not. I was finally going to get a chance to drive but since I am not used to the Jeep yet and the rains were blinding, poor Kenny had to take over for me. He was tired of driving but he was more nervous about me driving in the rain - especially since I felt the vehicle hydro-planing. At least we were able to pass the time away (almost all 6 hours of it) listening to an audio book-on-tape which was very good. It was called Sick Puppy by Carl Hiaasen. I think I may recommend it to my book group since I enjoyed it so much.
Well as promised, I wanted to post some pictures. I had taken over 20 wonderful pictures out there but when I got home I was very upset to find that I had accidenatlly erased almost all of them in the process of just erasing one so I was only left with a handful. I did find some older ones though and compiled an album. Here are two of my favorite flower shots:
I need to go to head to bed but I wanted to leave you with a few more thoughts on the trip:
Real tumbleweeds look exactly like they do in the movies.
I saw the beginning of a tornado cloud formation - fortunately, it never became a tornado but it was a neat thing to see!
Gnats can get into a car very quickly - but take forever to get out.
Deer will always be gorgeous animals to me.
Have a good night everyone! I hope to catch up on everyone's blogs tomorrow!
Howdy!! Well, thanks to NetZero, Kenny was able to find a local dial-up connection out here so I have a few minutes (on a really slow connection) to write a few thoughts. Overall, we've had a really good time. PaPa seems to be doing better and he ate better than he had been during our visit so that was encouraging. Today we helped around the house and Kenny changed PaPa's oil on the truck while I mowed the yard. I think I did well seeing that it was my first time ever on a riding lawn mower! We ended the day with a great steak dinner and some frozen margaritas so we are now all fat and happy and ready for bed. Even the dog is tired - she was snoring just a few minutes, passed out on the couch.
Anyway, here are some thoughts from the weekend:
Naps are good! Several naps a day are even better.
MaMa has a pretty flower garden (I'll post some pictures when I get back to Houston).
Riding lawn mowers are fun, especially in 6th gear...
PaPa's hands look like my Abuelos.
Damn, PaPa reads a lot!!
Storm clouds look so beautiful out here on the plains where you can see for miles and miles.
Wow! I saw my first rainbow in years today!!
Kaliche gets your new Jeep dirty real quick.
That's about it for now folks. I'll talk to you guys soon enough. We leave tomorrow afternoon so I will soon be back to my infinitely faster DSL connection! Yay!
Well, we are about to leave for a long, extended weekend to visit Kenny's grandparents so I will not be around any internet service till Wednesday, September 5th - they live out in the middle of nowhere in Central/West Texas about 40 miles Northwest of San Angelo. Here is a Texas map so you can see where San Angelo is compared to Houston... Houston is on the Gulf Coast while San Angelo is roughly in the middle of the state. It's about a 6 hour drive.
So I'll catch up with you guys in a few days when we get back to civilization! Have a safe and happy Labor Day weekend.
Uploaded some old scanned and digital photos into some new on-line albums...
Hanging Out with Friends
Austin "oldschoolcsraves" Reunion (January 27, 2001)
Trip to Washington, D.C (April 7-9, 2000)
Well, I have a little time before I head to bed where I can catch up on my blogging.
Thursday night I successfully pulled off a birthday dinner party for a very good friend of ours (and Kenny's co-worker), Sherry. She turned 24 on Wednesday so we were celebrating a day late but that's OK. I made lasagna from scratch and it turned out good. Overall, just had a good time with Sherry, CJ, Susan and Sky. Good food was eaten, alcohol was consumed and "You Don't Know Jack" was played on the Playstation. Sherry seems to have enjoyed the evening and that is what counts!
Friday came around and I successfully closed the books for my department at work (end-of-month accounting procedure). Rushed out of there and ventured into the rain. It's been raining constantly for about 3 days now and it just started to rain hard again! It seems that the poor people who were flooded a few months back during Tropical Storm Allison are getting flooded again! What a horrible situation.
So, it wasn't much fun to have to get out there and drive in it this mess but I had to - too many errands to do before leaving to West Texas tomorrow for the Labor Day weekend. Anyway, my most important appointment was with my new recruiter. And what a positive experience!! It really looks like Jennifer (my recruiter) will be able to get me a great job that pays me what I am worth. She is really excited about me and feels very positive about my resume and experience. Maybe my patience will pay off. She told me that she will hopefully get me placed by Thanksgiving. If this doesn't happen then it probably won't happen till February (due to the holidays) but I told her that this would be OK. I am in a fortunate position where my job is pretty secure for the time-being so I can afford to be patient. It was a just a really good meeting - we chatted about everything for 2 hours! I feel like things will turn around for me career-wise by the end of the year...