Should one just give up?

I don’t know about you, but does the all the grooming, dieting, exercising as well as keeping the house so clean you could eat off the floor get a bit overwhelming and you think you should just give up?   I’m at that stage now. 

It was only earlier this week that I had a couple of exercise sessions under my belt, my hair coloured and styled which cost a fortune but looked and felt great, if I don’t say so myself.  My clothes were starting to get a little lose and I’m sure my face looked a little fresher.   The house was spotless, clothes all washed, dried and put away,  and the dishwasher was empty because all the dishes were clean and put neatly away in their dedicated spots.  The towels were foldered and neatly stacked, in colour order, in the linen cupbloard.  The pantry and fridge was stocked with a couple of days worth of food which also included food for making lunches.

Forward a few days…….

My hair is overdue for a wash because I haven’t done it since the hairdresser did her magic, and I wanted to get my money’s worth.  I’ve just noticed I need a wax – not telling you where, but I need one none-the-less.  I’ve put on half a kilo because I’ve had a few wines and a bit too much to eat over the last couple of days and I haven’t been for a run.  The dishwasher is full and there are dirty dishes piling up waiting for the next load.  There is a washing basket full of towels in various colours waiting to be foldered and put away.  The bed hasn’t been made for days and the dust is slowly but surely settling in for the duration.  We’re out of food, hense the Thai takeaway tonight.  I’ve become a sloth!  And now I feel bad because society, on a whole, have become a people of perfectionists and I’ve subscribed to the group.  It’s exhausting!

I’m thinking about leaving the group but who am I kidding,  I love getting my hair done.

Is it just me?

Is it just me or does everyone feel like running away to join the circus? Figuratively speaking of course.

The confines of life get to me sometimes, as I’m sure it does you. I feel like a caged wild animal. Maybe referring to me as a wild animal is going too far, I’d say I was more like a caged dolphin – you know your duty is to perform predictable tricks but you can see the ocean beyond and dream of one day exploring what that ocean holds for you.

What holds me back is what I believe is the right thing to do, the right way to live, the right way to work and the right way to give myself to those closest to me. However, never too far away, packed in a slightly ajar closet, are the thoughts of what I’d love to do and that is: “Run Katie, Run!

Where am I going to run too, you ask?

This is a good question but, wherever it is – probably near the beach, I see myself dressed like a hippy, pottering around a garden, with a paint and easel not too far away. Yes I know I can’t paint, but this is my imagination and I can do anything in it.

In my imaginary world I don’t work 5 days a week, nor do I live in a penthouse apartment, nor can I buy more than I need or want. All I need and want is to have loving people around me and live for today, not for retirement.

[Harp music here, reality returning……]

Well, that was a nice little day dream, now back to the real world where I’m up at 6.27am writing about what I’d really want to do today albeit dressed as a hippy.

So what will I really be doing?

At 7am I’ll start getting ready for work. At 8am I’ll commence my drive to work where it may take 40-60 minutes to get 14 klms. Then I’ll sit at my desk most of the day, surface for lunch around 12 noon, coffee at 3pm, leave for home around 5.30pm, get home, have dinner, watch TV, maybe work on, then go to bed around 11pm, wake up tomorrow at 5ish to start all over again. Until Saturday, the day I get to put my toe in the ocean of life.

OMG is this it? Is this really what life is about? Shoot me now!

Ok, I realise that last statement is a bit overly dramatic but while I’m writing this blog that little closet has opened just a little bit more. Will I get the nerve to run and be free from the confines of life?

All I have to say about that is: Watch this space, you just never know!

Today’s jog

Maybe I was wrong in my last blog about ‘my dilemma’ – that it won’t be resolved. I was obviously in a ‘cold’ mood this morning because I didn’t make eye contact with anyone, and to be perfectly honest, it felt good.  I felt like I was having a minor power trip because I was in control by not giving away false smiles, which let’s face it, smiling at strangers at 6am isn’t exactly the first thing that springs to mind when I set out.

However, I must admit it did pass my mind that I live in a small community with the people that walk or run along the river front and I may get a nick name like ‘Ms Ice’ or something like with the folks that fall into category 1 or 2, see previous blog. Thankfully that passing thought did pass by and I brushed it off, continued my run and to hell with the category 1’s and 2’s.

The good intentions fairy

Often I set out with good intentions but I’m starting to believe the delivery of my good intentions are a bit skew-whiff.  No matter what I endeavour to organise, it doesn’t quite have the ending that I envisage.  Maybe my expectations are too high, especially of other people?   But no matter what I do, on the most part, people just don’t live up to their end of the bargain. 

Or is it they don’t live up to the bargan that I intended them to live up too?

The worse situation is when I’m trying to please one person but it results in others getting their noses out of joint.  But I’ll cop it on the chin because after all “I’m the good intentions fairy”. 

It’s a situation like this that has led to this post.  I was trying to do something good for someone I love. I’m not going into detail, because this will get me into more trouble and it’s been a rough day.  But I’d just like to say to everyone, if someone is trying to do something nice and their intentions are good, don’t expect the plans will go your way,  because after all – you’re not doing anything so suck it up!

To say or not to say?

For some years now I’ve been struggling with the dilemma of whether I should say hello to complete strangers that I pass while jogging around the neighbourhood.  Firstly I should mention that I usually run between 5am – 7am.  I think this point is important as you’ll discover while reading this blog.

I assume the majority of people reading this would say – “do the friendly thing and say hello”,  and to the most part I agree but I find that saying ‘hello’ has some mixed reactions from my ‘hello’ recipients, therefore my dilemma.

Firstly the reaction is dependant on ‘eye contact’ – this if very important.  I can tell that many people avoid eye contact by pretending you don’t exist.  I struggle with this one because as much as I’d like to pretend they’re not there, finding something to look at and focus on in order to avoid eye contact can be wrought with danger when jogging.

This danger became a realisation on a lunchtime jog around Parramatta Park a few years back. In order to avoid eye contact with a larger than usual walking group, I diverted my eyes to the left to take in the beautiful Parramatta River. Ok I exagerate, it’s not a beautiful river but I wanted to give the impression it was more interesting to look at than where I was going.  Result: arse-over-tit, embarrassment, and thankfully no injuries.

Then there are the eye contact people.  They fall into three categories:

  1. Makes eye contact but looks away without a response – this usually leaves me with a unrequited ‘hello’ and a promise never to say ‘hello’ again (hence my dilemma)
  2. Makes eye contact and gives a half hearted smile – I suspect these people are, like me, struggling with the same dilemma
  3. Makes eye contact, smiles and says ‘hello’ – these are the people who feel that we share a special bond and that may be we should form a group and celebrate the fact we get up at stupid hours of the morning.

Back to my dilemma and whether I’ll say ‘hello’?

Given I’ve had this dilemma for many years, my answer to this one is that this dilemma will never be resolved because it depends on the whether – whether or not I feel like falling into 1 of the 3 catagories outlined above and this is very much dependant on my personal weather: whether I’m hot or cold or mild.

So, if you see me out and about on my morning jog, remember my 3 categories and my personal weather pattern:

  • If I’m ‘hot’ you’ll get a smile and an ‘hello’
  • If I’m mild you’ll just get a smile
  • If I’m cold, don’t frikkin look at me because you won’t exist.

Sydney is a morning person

There is one thing I’ve learnt since living in Sydney and that is Sydney, like me, is a morning person albeit to a degree.

How do I know this to be the case?

On the most part Sydneyites use public transport to and from work each day.  I’ve been unlucky enough to use all form of transport, depending on where I live and where I work.

 This blog has come about through my travel to work via the ferry.  I caught the ferry each day at Cabarita Wharf and the trip itself was probably the best form of transport going,  as ferries don’t have to worry about road traffic issues. 

You see, there is a definate protocol to follow while waiting to board a ferry, bus and train. However, the protocol for ferries and buses are similar, trains are another story.

The morning ferry protocol

At most wharves along Parramatta River there is a long walkway between the main part of the wharf and where you board the ferry.  Cabarita ferry wharf is no different, see image below.

Each morning people line up along the gangway, first person starts the line and each person afterwards falls behind and so on. I’ve also learnt that Sydneyites don’t make friends at transport line-ups no matter how many years you come across the same people waiting for the same ferry/bus/train, you just don’t talk. You might smile but generally not.  Anyway, if someone breaks the line protocol, no one calls them out on it even though you know it’s bothering some and as much as they want to tell the line protocol breaker to adhere to the protocol,  they won’t say a word.  When the ferry arrives people quietly and politely embarks. Generally no one breaks the embarking protocol (oh yes, there is an embarking protocol too).

The protocol for disembarking the ferry (yes another protocol) is a little less routine but civil non-the-less. Once people are off the ferry they make their way to their prospective office blocks usually buying a coffee at their favourite coffee vendor along the way before they disappearing into their high-rise office building and their work day begins. 

All rather civil to this point.

The afternoon ferry protocol

The afternoon ferry protocol, if you can call it that, is somewhat dishevelled. And the issue starts with the wharf.

The offending wharf I started my journey home from was King St Wharf near Darling Harbour.  There is no gangway that forces a nice neat line towards the ferry so that doesn’t help the cause.  People have to mill around on arrival. Who comes first is not monitored or taken into consideration, when the millers are in great numbers, who came first is impossible to tell.  As time marches on the miller numbers increase exponentially and the anxiety levels increase.

So why do people get anxious you ask?

The answer to this is all in the number of millers to the number or standard of seats available to the ferry passengers.  Now this was never a problem for me, there were always enough seats but people’s anxiety levels still rose because of the eagerness to get the hell home after a day in the office and the eagerness to get a good seat far away from those horrid kids that make the trip home all that more annoying.

To add to the anxiety, the line protocol is no where to be seen. It’s not about who got to the ferry first, it’s about who got to the little bridge between the ferry platform and the boat itself. This involves pushing and in some case shoving.  Thankfully I kept my anxiety in check by being polite and letting the people I though deserved it, go ahead. But of course there were always the people who either arrived to the wharf after me or I didn’t like the look of, so I held my ground and ensured I embarked before them regardless of means.

So in conclusion, I came to the conclusion that Sydney, like me, is a morning person.

It’s Monday morning, here we go again

As previous blogs have had a direct relationship to even more previous blogs, this one too has a cousin – the last blog.

It’s 6am and I’m getting some therapeutic writing done to lift my spirits up before I start the morning ritual of getting ready for work. The weekend has been busy with friends and family. It’s Josh’s birthday on Tuesday so I have a few errands to do in my lunchtime today in regards to getting a few pieces of jewelry repaired, which is what he wanted for his birthday.  But as the case on most Mondays, I really really don’t want to go to work.  Yes,  I know that the last blog went on about loving my job, and I do like it a lot (love is a bit of a strong word to use about work) but what I don’t like about work is it’s the last place I want to be on a Monday.

What is it that I really want to do on Mondays you ask?

To answer this question right at this very minute (6.21am), I’d have to say ‘nothing’- “I really want to stay home and do nothing”.  And that would work up until about 9am when I’m sure I would decide what I’d really like to do today which would be one or more of the following:

  1. Go to Kristy’s and spend the day with her and the kids – this would be the high contender of the day
  2. Stay home and clean – this would take me up until about 9:15am, as the place is clean at the moment
  3. Stay home and exercise – the last time I exercised at home during the hours of 9am and 5pm is well……mmmmm……never
  4. Stay home and write – this is also a good contender but I have to be very much in the zone, meaning I can only write when I’m stressed or feeling up or down or emotional – so this possible contender is very much dependent on my emotional state and today I don’t have any emotional issues at this moment in time (just my dumb luck)
  5. Start painting – have I mentioned before that I can’t paint?  Yes I have, so there lies the issue with this contender
  6. mmmm….let’s see, is there a possible 6th contender?  mmmmm….Nah….. So moving right along

Ok, looking back over my list I’m sure I would select ‘2’, following by ‘1’ then possibly 4 depending on how the day went doing number 1.

[insert music here that gives the impression of coming out of a dream]

Well it’s 6:38am, I have until 7am of dreaming what I’d really like to do today before I start the morning ritual which means:

I’m going to work!

I love my new job

It’s been far too long since I’ve said that I love my new job. For the most part I’ve hated the first 6 weeks of any new job I’ve started.  I think the reason for that is what seems to be a big misinterpretation of what a ‘Business Analyst (BA)” really does.  With the exception of BT, I think I was a little frightened when I started there because of their reputation and my lack of confidence.

My new job is off to a flying start. I’m working in the digit media space and it’s very exiting to be at the leading edge of the new ‘digital media’ era. Ok, I know that digit media has been around for a while but with the smart phone revolution, digital media has now a whole new channel via smart phone and Internet TV.  The move out of the superannuation industry has been the best thing that’s happened in my career since working at Cards Etc who were working with leading edge technology at the time in the smart card space.  Smart cards are the ones with the micro chip used nowadays as extra security such as verifying pin numbers when purchasing stuff via credit card.

Anyway, given that I’ve only just got my new smart phone, a HTC Desire HD, of which I’m very happy with, I’m really getting my teeth into this job.  I’ve even worked way past my usual leaving time just because I couldn’t drag myself away.  I’m sure I’d still be there this morning if I hadn’t been dragged away by Michael, who also works there, to share our drive home.

And yes folks, I did mention that Michael also works there.  First time in 13 years since I moved to Sydney that we’ve ended up in the same organisation,  but given he’s a Project Manager and usually has BAs reporting to him, it was bound to happen eventually.  And since we are both in the digital media space, it may well be that I end up reporting to him for a project I’m assigned to in the future, assuming I will have a future working at Optus.  Future as in at least 2 years because that’s the longest time Optus allows their contractors to work for them,  and I stand by my policy of never taking up a permanent role.

So here I am loving my new job. The affects are apparent as in I’m sleeping much better, it doesn’t bother me that I get to work around 9am and leave around 6pm and it doesn’t bother me that I’m relatively dumb when it comes to the telecommunications industry so I’m running fast to understand. 

So fingers crossed this gig and my enthusiasm lasts!