Are You Sure This is Business School?

17 Sep

I knew this was going to be a hippie school, completely socially and environmentally responsible… What I didn’t expect is that at our week-long orientation there wouldn’t be “real” toilets and that as a result my bodily functions would be segregated into actual the categories of #1 and #2 with a “facility” for each… And by facility, I mean go pee in the woods and take a poop in the composting toilet, don’t forget to throw some peat down when you’re done…

Yeah, that’s a visual isn’t it?

Oh and that showering will be infrequent, at best, as the showers are outdoors and water is scarce. So, now when I get to shower, it is an “eco-shower” [get wet & turn water off, soap up, turn water on and rinse]. Though I suppose that’s not much different from a military shower [which I should be familiar with given my husband’s career].

Look, I always knew I could be more green… but I thought there would be baby steps, like drinking from my own water & coffee cups [re-usable and bpa free], eating all locally sourced organic food [maybe even vegetarian; heck, possibly even vegan], reducing natural resource consumption and staying in LEED / sustainabile facilities.

Nope, it seems our orientation is throwing us head first into sustainability. Completely and totally.

I joke, but I am grateful for this. For the experience. For the knowledge. For the community. And everything else I will get out of this. I am at the absolute best place I can be to change the world and I’m excited.


I’m a Bad, Bad Blogger

14 Sep

I’m hoping that will change now that I have an iPad app that allows me to read and write. Who knows, I say that every time.

The truth is my life is insane. I don’t have “that much” going on, but yet I have so much. I’ve got a job that’s intense [though who knew it would be]… and I’m working on my MBA. Our house needs work. I have lots of travel [work and personal]. I haven’t even added in going to the barn to ride my horse or workout… OR do anything else… because I haven’t…

It’s sad. I need to do those things, but even the mundane details take so.much.time. Example: Yesterday I spent 1.5 hrs on the phone during my drive home trying to accomplish 1 “simple” thing. Change the insurance policy on our VA house to a landlord policy.

Instead of that being me getting quotes, it turned into that plus changing my name at Suntrust FOR THE THIRD TIME, getting our mortgage address information corrected FOR THE SECOND TIME, and finding out that the policy I chose does not work with our mortgage [AFTER I chose it]. I still do not have a resolution to it and that’s the thing… EVERY. SINGLE. THING. takes a millions steps….

I don’t want to sound bitter and ranting, but I am a little. The thing is I have *so* much to do that it would be nice if just *one* thing was simple. Just one…

So anyway, I am headed to my orientation for my MBA. It’s going to be all “kumbaya” and connecting with the Universe. Just what I need right now. Hopefully, I can get myself centered. Grounded. And in-tune with what I need.

The good news is I will have time to connect with the world again… at least for 6 days.

The Real Deal

29 Aug

On 15 August, I drove away from Michigan.  Again.

I drove back to work for a meeting.  Then  I flew back to MI for another meeting and back to VA/DC again.   Ugh.  Work travel.

This whole living in limbo thing is killing me.  I checked out of my “old” job last Friday and into my “new” job Monday [it’s all relative as I’ve been working my new job since April].

Thing is, I’m living in the homes of other people or on the empty floor of my vacant house.  I’ve been dealing with all of that.

5 September my house becomes occupied by strangers.  It’s sad.

It’s all sad.  I’m happy for the change.  New job.  New locale.  Outside the Beltway, outside the insanity [but not outside the political pressures of my program], but that’s ok.  It’s all different.  It’s good.  It’s bad.  It’s just sad, in some and many ways.

So, I’m working [through the “transition” and the drama].  I’m grieving the move, my friends, but mostly my mom… still somehow.

That’s me.

I travel back to MI on Friday, but the being “home” is short-lived.  After a week home, I’m back on the road.  For work.  For school.  For work.  Non-stop.  The good with the bad.

Just busy trying to deal, stay afloat and live.

Blog on Fire

26 Aug


So the other day I was very surprised to see a comment come through from Beauty Still Remains nominating me for the “Blog on Fire Award”.  I was very excited as this is the first time I’ve had such an occurrence [this is a new blog after all].

Unfortunately, she caught me during my flight to DC/VA for work and I’ve been living in a crazy flux state since the nomination, so now I am just getting to fulfill the “requirements”, a list of 8 things about myself and nomination of other blogs on fire to keep the chain moving.

Here are the long-awaited 8 things about me:

[1]: I own a horse [a beautiful arabian] and I do equestrian vaulting [think gymnastics/dance/cheerleading [stunts] on a horse, but not mine].
[2]: I love photography.
[3]: I’m Economist at heart [and by training].  Any decision can be seen through the lens of Economics, like having sex or why people hit the snooze button.  It’s not just about guns and butter $$$.  That’s why I love the discipline.
[4]: I want to live overseas for out next tour or at any point really.  Anywhere [that fit with our life circumstances at that point], but would *love* Italy.
[5]: I’ve been trying to work in Iraq or Afghanistan… I’d settle for Bahrain as well.  It would be great if my husband could get stationed there too.
[6]: I live a life composed of “just one of those moments”.  Maybe I will elaborate someday.
[7]: There was a period in my life when the number of gay men I dated was greater than the number of straight men.
[8]: I want to write a book.

I’ve sent out my nominations.  Thanks for including me!

Why Expect a ‘Goodbye’, When You Haven’t had a ‘Hello’

24 Aug

since january.

i officially left my old job to transition into my new job today.  it was more of a paperwork drill than anything else, as i’ve already been working the new job since the end of april.  i was just “on loan” during that time, while the details of how that would work sorted themselves out.  so, today was the last day i went back to that office to give them all my stuff and say, “peace out.”

i can’t say that i expected the program manager to acknowledge my existence on this planet, but it is still baffling to me that he hasn’t.  since january.  in fact i am not sure if he did prior to then, but i know that at the end of january i left on travel for a month and when i returned in march, he didn’t even say hello.  i was gone for a month and he couldn’t even bother a hello.  sure, maybe he didn’t see me.  except that he did.  several times he walked right by me that first day back.  and the next days.  it got to be a game.  when would he become human and provide a simple greeting of some sort.  it never happened.

he did once or twice talk to someone else about a request i made within the course of my work, without coming to me directly, which prompted me to walk over and engage the conversation with him.  but never in four months [or any of them since] did he manage a simple hello. hi. how are you? or any other cursory greeting.  while i provided him plenty of opportunity [not on purpose, just sheer fact of working in a program office together], not a word was said. at the end, and the only time i did this, i avoided an encounter at the door with him just so i wouldn’t have to break our ridiculous silence by saying “thank you”.

really, even all of that should not have come as a surprise.  after my mother went into the hospital and ultimately passed away after my wedding, i was sending emails back to work keeping them apprised of the situation [while he was transitioning into the program manager position, newly appointed].  not once in all of that did he ever send a single word back.  not a ‘take all the time you need’. nor a ‘do what you need to do’.  heck, he could have sent something simple and easy such as ‘i’m sorry’ or heck ‘i understand’ or for those with no empathy ‘roger’.  instead he wrote not a word.  not a single world.

i did give him the benefit of the doubt.  he was new.  he had lots of emails flooding his inbox each day, perhaps he didn’t see the messages i sent.  okay.  i get it. but no, no.  when i finally came back to work i got to hear from him several times how he read everything.  everything.  every. single. piece. of. information. that came his way. he read. he read it all.

so today, when he did not manage to utter a single word to me, not a hello or a goodbye, when he passed by on my very last day, i should not have been surprised.


I wrote this just now for other purposes, but I wanted you to know I am still here and I am in the middle of some craziness right now.  I will have time to be more attentive tomorrow and to thank all of you for the support you’ve given then.  I promise I’m not ignoring you.

I Can’t Even Make This Stuff Up

14 Aug

I had very tall orders for our move.  Self imposed, but tall orders no less.  Not only did I have to pack up and clean out our VA house, I decided it would be good to add:

1.Redo New Kitchen: Refinish Cabinets, Change the countertop, change the countertop and repaint the kitchen.
2. Paint the whole house: It’s 900 sqft, but I thought it would be good to get it done before our movers arrived.
3. Wire house for TV, it is a 1950’s house and has no such hook-ups.
4. Remove the carpet upstairs and replace it with bamboo flooring.
5. Power wash house.
6. Remove the 1950’s special awnings.
7. Replace the roof on the single car garage.
8. Redecorate our bedroom arrangements [new bed stuff].
9. Plan and execute a party for 40 people.
10. Unpack enough of our stuff to have a place for the in-laws and to have a beautiful place for our party.

Did I mention the movers were scheduled to arrive on the 8th of August.  The in-laws arrival scheduled for the 9th.  My husband’s Change of Command ceremony on the 11th.

Yeah, I’m pretty sure that qualifies me as certifiably crazy.

Just like all of the best laid plans, everything went to hell in a hand basket.

1. The movers were late on Wednesday.  They didn’t finish unloading until 11pm.  I didn’t get to unpack a single box, contrary to plan.
2. The cabinet hinges were wrong, causing the alignment to be wrong and requiring a re-do [for a later date].  Also found out the contractor was not contracted for the backsplash… and on…
3. My quick minute spent grabbing breakfast Thursday morning was dutifully punished by the dogs biting a box, dragging it down and eating my baking supplies. A box of baker’s chocolate. A bag of chocolate chips. A bag of toffee/chocolate chunks. A bag of brown sugar. A bag of wrapped caramels. A bag of rice [not baking supplies, but “delicious” no less].
4. Instead of unpacking, I got to take our black lab to the animal hospital to treat him for ingesting a toxic amount of chocolate [amongst other things].
5. When I returned home from the animal hospital at 6pm, the other lab was busy vomiting and dealing with toxic chocolate as well.
6. I scrambled to clean up dog puke [at a rate of 15 vomits per 5 minutes] and unpack just enough for the in-laws to have a bed to sleep in for their midnight arrival
7. Midnight became 3 am because the in-laws luggage was lost.
8. The counter-top guy who was supposed to arrive Friday morning, was really scheduled for Friday afternoon.  The plumber who was supposed to arrive Friday afternoon, came Friday morning.
9. The counter-top guy finally came around 6pm, when he was “scheduled” for 2pm.  Counter, but no sink.
10. Unpacked the rest of the day, until 3 am. Slept until 5:30am on Saturday when I had to get ready for the Change of Command.
11. Plumber arrived at noon on Saturday, when we had guests at 3pm.
12. After the Change of Command, I was left alone to clean, set-up for the party and deal with the pending storm that was threatening to bring the whole party in our 900 sqft house.

But we survived. survived.  The chaos.  The disarray.  The complete cluster fuck everything was.   I survived it all.

And now?  I’m done.

There is still much to do, but I’m taking a moment to breath.

Farewell to the Center of the Universe

6 Aug

The Bad:

It is hard to say goodbye to the first place you’ve ever owned.  The first place you’ve staked your claim.  Where you first lived as a couple, as an engaged couple, as a married couple.  However untraditional.

The first house I purchased.  Yes, it was *my* purchase in case it didn’t work out.  I loved it.

It was a place my mother fretted over, once she knew of it.  The place she never got to visit, to see of my life and an accomplishment.  The place, in the end, she wished she had lived. My first stake and she never got to be a part of it, except electronically.

I left it there today.  In Ashland, VA.  The Center of the Universe.


The Good:

So, it turns out when you feel like you’re leaving something behind, it is quite possibly definitely something important, like your clothes.  All of them [or the ones the movers didn’t pack, but what you plan to keep as a wardrobe in your new house].  Shit.  Luckily, I managed to grab those at the very end and find somewhere to stuff them… Sounds easier than it was.

Then the two [of four] puppies and I set out for Michigan and left behind our Virginia house.  While I freaked out for 10 hours thinking I had a tick on my head,