Monday, December 13, 2010

Get it Together, L$

I think its about time for me to put my big girl pants on and deal. It's time for me to suck it up, get my game face on, and get ready to start the next big adventure of my life. I'm excited. I really am. But...I'm also a wee little bit scared.

(And by wee little bit scared what I mean is, I'm darn close to being too paralyzed with fear to get out of bed in the morning). Shhhh...

This is my last week at work which is both bittersweet and surreal. Can't even believe it. There have been days that seemed to last for three years and times when I was banging my head against the wall out of boredom and frustration, but by and large, the past year and a half has flown by. I don't even know that it has entirely sunk into my little brain yet that I really and truly am going to leave this place.

The past two weeks or so have been a freakin' emotional roller coaster for me (ok who am I kidding...that statement really applies to the past two years of my life, if we're being honest here). I alternate between being super excited about the new job/new city/adventureness of it all, being petrified to the point of asking myself if I'm sure I'm making the right decision and just wanting to hide under my bed until June, and being sad to leave such good people, yet resigned to do this thing. Am I a wreck or what? (The correct answer is yes, yes I am).

I think what it all comes down to is that this is just a really big change. Maybe the biggest life change I have experienced to date even, (I'll get back to you on that) but a change for sure. At this point I think I dont even know for sure if this is a good change, or the right change, a temporary change or a permanent this point it's still just change. And change is scary.

All I really know for sure at this point is that I am finally moving. Both literally and figuratively. I hope I'm moving forward but even if I'm not, at least I'm no longer standing still either. I'm sad to leave my friends here, but I know that I can't stay and keep doing what I've been doing (on a number of levels), so its time for me to go. What it ultimately comes down to is that I've finally started to realize that there's sometimes a difference between what I want and what is right. Staying in NOLA would be easy now. I have friends, I know my way around as well as anyone, I've got a job, etc. It's comfortable and its easy. Even when I'm bored out of my mind at work there's a comfort to having a routine, to seeing the same people every day, and to the relationships I've developed here. But that doesn't make any of it right. I have too much yet to do with my life that I know I cannot accomplish from where I am right now. I see so many people who seem to me as though they have essentially given up; they'd rather stay in a situation, even when its bad, because they're too afraid to risk the discomfort of change. I don't ever want to be that. I hope I never reach a point where I let fear be the determining factor in what I choose for myself.

So...I'm going. It wont be easy at all, and between now and then I'd imagine I'll shed no small number of tears for all that I'm leaving here. I'm going knowing that there will definitely be tough days ahead, probably days when I feel lonely, days when I'm scared, and days when I really do just want to come running back to the feeling of security I have finally started to develop in NOLA. But I also know I can't do that. And I won't. I know that tough as it may be, this is what I have to do right now.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Sometimes technology, I really hate you

No, really. I'll be the first to admit that my phone is more like another bodily appendage than a piece of hardware and that I'm not sure how I would function without the internet and my ipod and my blackberry. Seriously, I'm so dependant at this point that I'd probably just curl up in a corner and die without them. That said, some days I kinda just want to throw the stupid phone at the wall and never look back.

So the other day, everything I own decided to break at the same time. Bless her heart, I think my poor jeep is on its last leg and I'm just crossing my fingers that she'll last a little while longer until I can buy a new vehicle. The battery died on me this past week, so I had AAA come to my office to jump start the engine (in the parking garage, mind you). The guy was cool and offered to clean my battery connectors for me, since apparently they were in "God awful shape," and being one to never pass up a free offer, I agreed to let him. It went well until he was trying to put them back on and tighten them and one snapped apart in his hands. Fantastic. So then I got to go on an adventure with the AAA guy to buy new connectors. I guess its not all bad--if they were in that bad of shape they probably just needed to be replaced anyway.

Well, while all of this is going on (because nothing says "fun afternoon" like being stranded with a dead car and also a cell phone that doesn't work), my cell phone decides to spontaneuously combust. And by combust I mean die. It froze up and the only button that would work at all was the "T" which isn't horribly helpful, you know? So after I finally got the jeep running agin, I then got to drive out to the AT&T service store and wait around for an hour for them to determine that the refurbished phone they gave me three weeks ago when I was there for the same problem, was in fact broken beyond repair. I am now on my 3rd phone.

Last but not least, the heater in my apartment went out yesterday while I was at work. Guess who slept in sweat pants, under armour and wool socks last night...?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Crossing the Line

I have too much to lose, she said, if I cross that line. Like what? I said. She could not think of anything that day so she said she'd get back to me. Since then I've been thinking what I would lose if I cross my line & I haven't come up with anything either. There's always another line somewhere.

(Forwarded to me from my dear friend Jonnie. I can't take credit for this. I'm not even entirely sure I understand it yet...but I like it).

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Only In New Orleans, Baby

On my flight home to Kentucky last week for Thanksgiving, I ended up sitting next to (what turned out to be) a very, very strange woman. She was nice enough, but--and I say this with all the love in the world...sorta--it was a solid reminder that there are all kinds of people out there and some of them are just nutcases. Straight up "I'm-on-a-day-pass-from-the-asylum crazy. No two ways about it. Anywho, she was asking me all about New Orleans; has it come back since Katrina? How much of the media coverage was accurate? What's it really like to live here? In talking to her I really started to think about this city that has become my adopted home and as such, have decided to make a list, to pay tribute if you will, to all of the wonderful, unique and frankly really weird things about this place. Here goes:

Only in New Orleans is "I got caught in a second line" a totally valid and legit excuse for being late to work. (Yes, this really happens).

Only in New Orleans can you attend the Annual National Pirate Convention each April. (Though let it be noted that it is still completely acceptable to dress in full pirate garb year round. We do not limit this priviledge to just one weekend per year).

Only in New Orleans can I see a woman out for her daily jog at 9:30 on a Sunday morning carrying a beer in one hand and a bag of potato chips in the other. I mean, maybe she needed a snack along the way?

Only in New Orleans can one eat beignets and drink cafe au lait at 4:00 a.m. after a night of debauchery in the French Quarter.

Only in New Orleans does the entire city shut down for the better part of two weeks to party for Mardi Gras.

Only in New Orleans is a complete stranger "Honey" or "Baby" or "My Love." Oh and--shaking hands? Yeah I haven't done that since I've lived here. It's a foreign concept to these people. In New Orleans you greet people with a hug and a kiss, always. It kinda freaked me out at first, not gonna lie, but now when I meet people and they only want to shake my hand I'm mildly offended.

Only in New Orleans did I literally jar my car battery loose over the course of normal, everyday driving on the streets here. How sad is that?

Only in New Orleans can yer mom an' dem go make groceries.

Only in New Orleans is, "Who dat?" followed by "Who dat!" a complete conversation.

Only in New Orleans have I had some of the most incredible experiences of my life. Maybe it hasn't all been sunshine and rainbows for me here, but I'm gonna miss this place.