Dear me

Ah, summer is in a full swing right now, and with temperature rising up to 30+ I enjoy every moment of it. Well, I’d like it even more, if I had any vacation days to lazily spend by a lake or something, but since I’m just fresh out of my trial period I have none, so have to make do with the lazily active afternoons after work and weekends. And during lunch break hour, which, quite happily, recently has been just pleasantly sunny and hot with no crash boom bang to scare the sh*t out of me ;)
The other day I’ve rented a city bike and pedaled to the park in search of some cozy spot in a pleasant shadows of some trees, and I’ve found one right next to the Vilnelė river. Ah, memories! I’ve spent so many good time there. But I’m never admitting I’ve done anything illegal as a teen though. Nah, never *lips sealed and cross my heart*
I’ve totally forgotten that the Vilnelė gets this great during summer. I must admit, thoug, that the lush great meadow of a river was very pleasing to the eye. The regular inhabitants did not seem to mind the excess of greenery too.
A nice shady spot under the tree. What could be better on a hot hot day?

the Vilnelė river is as lush green as the grass on it’s banks
and it even has blossoms! just like a real meadow should have :D

Mind, these guys don’t seem to care they’re swimming and fishing in a meadow
and this forget-me-not? first I’ve mistaken it for some water plant – so close to water it grows, and only later I’ve seen my error
a lovely couple of looms. Just love to watch when they start diving
But wait, there’s more. That’s what I’ve found among my change this morning

Haven’t seen this commemorative coin before, so when I’ve first noticed this one among other coins, my first impulse was that I’d been given some foreign currency or something. Just as I’ve thought there were only 1 Litas different commemorative coins, I’ve find out there’s also Kurėnas’ edition. What else did I miss? If I’ve missed anything, I sure must some catching up to do before it’s too late, since January 1st, 2015, we start saying good-bey to our Litas and saying hello to Euros. I’m not set against EU currency like some, but I’ll sure will miss Litas.
And then today a piece of good news came to my e-mail. It started with “Dear Ms., we’re happy to inform you that you’ve been (wait for it) ACCEPTED”! Yay! All I have to do now is to make sure I’ve sufficient funds to pay for the pleasure :) Come autumn, I'm back to school, yay!

Karate Kid

I’ve been invited to a picnic on Saturday afternoon, so I happily packed my picnic kit – some wine, some snacks and a blanket to sit on – and off I went to enjoy a good time. After a short hike down the slope, we chose a nice and pleasantly shady spot near the river for our picnic, and started enjoying ourselves. Wine and food combined helped a lot :)
Our picnic was well on its way, when this man on a bicycle sped past us and settled a short distance from us on a sandy part of the river side. Since it was a public place, we did not pay the guy much of an attention at first. But it all changed in a few minutes.
Girl friend. ‘Look! Look! D’ya see what HE is DOING?!’
We all turned to look and OMG I could literary feel my jaw fall –  there’s this guy doing all crazy stuff. He was rolling in the sand like a seal at first, then he probably tried to swim on it, then he jumped up and started kicking and punching the air karate, thai chi and whatever else style. We just kept on watching unable to turn away for a while.
Girl friend. ‘Is he drunk, or what?’
Girl friend 2. ‘I’d bet he’s high.’
Me. ‘That is crazy. Who could’ve thought we’d get this sort of entertainment in a place like this.’
Girl friend 2. ‘Yah, that’s entertainment, but I sure hope he does not come any closer to us.’
Male friend. ‘I bet he’s doing all of this to impress you.’
Us. ‘Who? what?’
Male friend. ‘Well, there are three of you, and I’m your only male companion, so he’s just showing off.’
We laughed at this notion in unison. The thought that some one might think THIS sort of showing off might impress anyone in his/her right mind, was just so ludicrous. Then we got tired of watching the ‘show’ and stopped paying much of an attention to him, but an occasional glance towards him to check what else he might’ve come up with. This lasted for an hour at the very least, and the guy just kind of became part of the scenery, though, I admit, quite an eerily one. Then our male friend exclaimed in a hushed tones, ‘Hey, I was right! He’s coming over to us.’
Dang it. None of us wanted to deal with drunk, high or simply crazy person, but there was no way to escape that, so we kind of braced for the worst, and our male friend shifted his position just in case he needed to defend any of us girls. Sure enough, the first impression of the karate guy up close wasn’t any better than that of from a distance. He came to us holding a fist sized rock in his outstretched arm, and for a short moment I really thought that he is going to be all violent. By the looks on the faces of my girl friends, it was obvious they were readying to flee. Luckily, the guy turned out to be non-violent.
Karate kid. ‘See what I’ve got here? It’s a granite!’
Male friend. ‘Yup. It’s a nice piece of granite.’
I don’t remember much of the conversation that followed, since I was still ready to jump at run at the time, and I surely did not want to encourage the guy to stay any longer with asking any questions or joining in in the conversation between to men. My lady friends shared frame of mind entirely. Probably since only our male friend deigned to talk to him, the guy soon ran dry with what to say, and ten minutes (or like eternity) later finally departed, letting us girls let out a breath we’re holding.
Male friend. ‘See I was 100 percent right. He DID want to impress you!’
We laughed at this. Laughed out loud and wholeheartedly. We kept on laughing and giggling unable to stop ourselves. Then the guy pedaled passed us with a scornful look on his face and shot a comment at us.
Karate kid. ‘I came over here in hopes of finding meself a girlfriend, but what I get is mocking. I’ve lived in Canada and USA, and THERE I was never laughed at.’
Passed this point I think all of us were rolling on the ground with laughter.
But I must tell ya, this was hellava funny, though totally ineffective pick up technique for sure :D


Back to a drawing board

Summer is here, and once again I'm full into planning my road trip. If I could, I'd go on it as soon as possible, but, quite unfortunately, I'll have to wait for mid-August and for the sole three day long weekend this summer. On the positive side, this leaves me with plenty of time to plan


Everything is for the best

there’s some light even in the dark of a night
Well, I sure hope that it is. After a give or take half a year at home and with no other income but unemployment allowance and some of my own saving, I’m more than eager to do anything, but get the hell out of here and actually do something. On the plus side, this long vacation was a useful break after almost 3 years of work work work with only few get-aways for a day or two at the most. On the downside, I’m never comfortable with watching my savings just melt away… Anyway, so far this break was mostly positive, so I’ll just try to keep it that way. So let’s just look for all the positive outcomes of this situation:
* I am full of energy, well rested, and ready to move mountains (though hopefully I don’t have to  or I might end up with some nations angry with me if I move their Alps)
* If all works out as planned, this is going to be my last week at home (a cautious hurray goes here and fingers crossed)
* I’m finally out of the ‘cage’.
What ‘cage’? The ‘cage’ of my own in-box thinking. Since for a couple of years I’ve been thinking about going back to school for my masters degree, and since I wanted to get this degree in a totally different field than my BA, that meant I needed to take some additional courses and only then would be eligible to apply. Problem was that I’d have had to pay both for the courses and for the masters studies. And money is always an issue for me – I’m never easy with parting with greater sums, and I’m even less attracted to the thought of taking a loan. So there you have it – a wish to go back to school and insufficient funds of my own to get me through 3 years at school. Well, after a couple of months at home, with much time spent outdoors and with somehow a much clearer head and brighter perspective, I had this eureka moment – why was I so fixated on getting the masters? I could achieve the very same goal and at much much lesser costs by starting over and getting my BAcc or BAE at college level instead of masters in the same field at pricey university. And so the plan has been hatched: step 1 – get a job, step 2 – back to school.
Making these plans public is like making a promise so I’d not back out at the very last moment. And hopefully principle of men making plans, and gods laughing at them will not be applicable just this once.


Under the magnifying glass

For starters an old joke:
Consul : What is your name?
Arab : Abdul Aziz
Consul: Sex?
Arab : Six to ten times a week
Consul: I mean, male or female?
Arab : Both M ale and female sometimes camels
Consul: Holy cow!
Arab : Yes, cows and dogs too
Consul: Man,……… isn’ t it hostile?
Arab :Horse style, dog style, any style
Consul: Oh dear!
Arab : No no, no deer they run too fast.
Then a quote:
‘ <…> Beginnings are scary, endings are usually sad, but it’s the middle that counts the most. Try to remember that when you find yourself at a new beginning. Just give hope a chance to float up. And it will, too…’ (Hope Floats, 1998)
I find myself today somewhere between a scary beginning that might be and a certain level of being lost in translation while out there looking for THE Job. How is it going then? Relatively well since I’m still on track and still hopeful, though numbers in my bank account might not agree to that at all. So on the one hand I’m still looking for something to really catch my eye, where I would get this vibe of ‘I WANT to work here’ and all. But on the other hand, I’d like to get THE job already and like NOW or I just might end up shooting myself with a door handle, that’s how bored I’m getting with having too much spare time. Oh, I now hear voices of some of my friends asking me why wouldn’t I just start something of my own rather than look for yet another employment. Well, while self employment is certainly an option for many and many people out there, I just don’t want that for myself, not now, and possibly not ever. So that’s why I keep on browsing job ads and sending out my CVs. Until I do, I have loads of time to waste, many ads to read and reply to, and then an interview here and there to attend to.
It now feels good that after all that pre-holiday and post-holiday dead calm there’s plenty of activity in the job market, and after more than a month of complete silence things are, at least theoretically, starting to look good. Fingers crossed that I’ll get my 8 to 5 in no time at all. Wish it was one of the two options I’ve interviewed for recently. If not, then moving on to other possible right ones for me. My ‘magnifying glass’ all set and tweaked to spot all the clues for the right position I’m still in the wild hunting :)

Since this is like the second break in my career, I can dully note that sometimes when working 8 to 5 I get to the point that I just dream to have lots and lots of vacation days and spare time on my hands to waste, to read some book, to visit some museums or something else you want to do but never actually do. But when you actually end up having loads of time, it might not be all that fun at all. Oh, the first month is great I’ll give you that. It’s like a perfect vacation with ideas for what should I do next just bubbling inside and all, but sometime into the second or third month this honeymoon is suddenly over. Cinema, museums, reading, exercising, etc., etc. are still on, but the joy is all gone, and I start to long for doing some work instead of this ‘party’ thing. Money, though not yet under water in that area, is also becoming an issue. Once you’re short of regular income, here comes the dreaded ‘Do I really NEED to buy this?’ instead of sometimes so pleasant impulse shopping, partying, etc.


I come undone

Fast forward a week and I'm out of here. I've already referred in my previous blog entry that my current job is like a life in Hell-mouth straight out of 'Buffy the vampire slayer' TV show, but soon all bad is to as and I've finally given my two weeks notice and now I feel sooo relieved. A better job (and by now I think that ANY job is better than this one) is still just an uncertain prospect in my future, which I'm sure is soon to come to life and get some material form, but I just could not stand staying here for any longer or I would be risking becoming one of those surly faces I'm facing all day long at the moment. Up until this experience I've thought that a promise of 'friendly co-workers' and 'friendly working environment' was just that - words to describe something obvious and a must-have for ANY company. Turns out, this small yet so essential part of good job might sometimes be missing, making in turn a good on paper job to something entirely different.
Some compromises work for the best, but if they don't then they just don't and it's time to move on. And since I'm already feeling I'm becoming one of them - eternally unhappy, grumpy and dissatisfied co-workers of mine - it is better to move on than to dwell on the thought that all is bad, all is dark, managers are fools, etc. No job should be a battle for staying afloat and sane. corporate_mismanagement_sjpg1225

Just kill 'em all

No no don't worry I'm not on some killing rampage or completely out of my mind, but there is some killing involved in my activities on almost daily basis. But I'll get back to it a little bit later.
First of all, let me begin with telling that I've never been a damsel in distress, and I never intend to be one, if I can help it. I enjoyed fairy tales and their happy endings and all, but I just never could understand why is it that men characters in those stories usually were the ones having all these exciting adventures, and the ladies were either left behind to just wait, or they mostly were these annoying damsels in distress waiting for their rescuer. I've never wanted to be a boy, but neither did I ever wanted to be this helpless girl. I wanted to have the adventure of killing some dragon, discovering some Wild West territories or flying some spaceship Star Wars' style, etc. for myself. Since until my early teenage years I was happily tailing my brother and his boy company, including all of my summers spent in a company of my all-boy cousins, I've never even questioned myself, if climbing up that tree is girlish or not. I was having a time of my life up in those trees or while making some arrows for a hand made bows, and was basically doing anything the boys did, but those few things I thought were stupid. Anyway, I've learned to kick ass and fight in a proper way - no hair pulling and scratching at your opponent's face like some girly girls do (though that technique is SCARY, and could be quite efficient from what I've seen).
Then the day has come, when I was no longer wanted in this company of the boys. My brother - a teenager now - was more interested in girls and other stuff the boys at that age do, than playing with his little sis. So, after years and years of running with the boys, I've found myself playing with the girls my age, and often thinking how playing family is so much much more boring than playing football. I think this was the time, when I first decided, that I'd never be this helpless girl, who is stuck with cooking, while some men are out looking for a mammoth to kill.
Don't get me wrong, I've never wanted to be a manly lady, a man or anything like that, but in my opinion a princess in a ball gown was just as good for some sword fight as a knight in his armor. Only the princess in this case had the advantage of two worlds - fighting like a man, or running from the fight without a risk of being called unmanly or a coward ;) Cheating, you'd say? Screw that! If I cannot open a jar, I'd ask for help, but I still have a trick or two up my sleeve if this help is unavailable :)
I have some phobias and frights; I can work some of them, and I've come to terms with the others. It's like I'm afraid of heights, yet I can climb up real high for a picturesque view to enjoy. On the other hand, at the mere sight of a mouse or some snake I'd be gone in the opposite direction in a moment, fighting back a panicky noises coming from my throat. And that's OK. The thing about being a knight as opposed to the unlucky damsel waiting to be saved is to take charge of your own decisions, life, and not just sit waiting for life to happen while you skulk.
So now we're back to the killing part. Since August is well known for wasps getting very active and bothersome, it's no surprise that this summer is no exception. But a late night exercise on an almost daily basis of killing up to some 3 nasty wasps at a time, which dare to bother a sleepy princess while she's getting ready for hers good night's sleep is way too much. That is when the princess gets all mad and tunes into her 'kill 'em all' slayer mode.
How's killing a few angry wasps for a lullaby for you, eh?