Roller Coaster

Roller Coaster Making a LoopI’m on a roller-coaster of emotions these last few weeks and days of Autumn.  Some days I’m anxious for the ride to start, some days I’m feeling a little “loop-de-loop” queasy and other days I’ve got an adrenaline rush of excitement.

Whyhowcome?  I’ll tell ya.  First, of course, my birthday’s in October and there’s always the anticipation of birthday cards, greetings, and maybe surprises.   Honestly, I have the best birthday time of year.  When I was a kid, school had already started so there was always a birthday party (no, not at school.  School was for school.  The party was at our apartment.) I grew up in NY and the leaves had started to turn (for my birthday celebration, of course!) and the weather was turning cooler and crisper.  I knew once that happened we were on a downward plunge to “My Favorite Holiday” — Christmas!  So my birthday touched off the start of the whole holiday season.

Now I have to tell you… when I was in school, we got our report cards in mid-October — usually on or just before my birthday (it depended on the day of the week it fell on, I think).  I loved school and my report card was ALWAYS a good one, so no fears, just reinforcement that I was doing something right!  I have never been anxious about getting grades (well, with the exception of science, especially in High School and college).  All 90’s and A’s goes a long way toward a great birthday!

So, there I was, enjoying my birthday… when just 4 days later… I had a job interview!  YES, the 2nd one in 4.5 years, and I was NERVOUS.  Me!  I’m rarely nervous, but that morning I was.  One of the few people who knew in advance that I had an interview asked, “how did it go?”  I always think it goes well.  This feeling didn’t help the nerves.  What if I bombed out completely and here I am thinking I really aced it?  Well, I didn’t have to wait long because by 11:30 the next morning I had a new full-time, benefit-carrying job!  So, we’re up on top of the rails again…. but… there was a 2 week waiting period to start the new job.  Would I like it?  Who would I work with?  What was the new commute going to do to my sanity (no cracks!)?  Could I actually get up at 5:30 IN THE MORNING?  What’s that?  Yes, the coaster was plunging again!

The appointed day came:  I was prepared.  Clothing all laid out, breakfast planned, lunch made and lunchbox at the ready, car gassed up… and OFF I WENT.  Only to hit a TREMENDOUS traffic snarl and when I should have been 1/2 an hour early, I ended up arriving 15 minutes late (due, also, in part to the fact that I’d accidentally entered the incorrect street address in my GPS app, and then had to crawl across town to my ultimate destination.  So I was Up & Down at the same time.

And they were waiting for me, with coffee & baked treats, a bottle of sparkling cider, a going upcolorful plant and a bag of pumpkin spice yogurt pretzels.  What a nice welcome.  Going UP!

The first three days (Wednesday  – Friday) were without any other incidents, until it came time to leave for home on Friday.  Now, the traffic around here is a MESS on any given day at any given time, but FRIDAY afternoon is probably the worst.  I blame it on lack of highway planning when laying out communities and when building corporate parks.  The thought of “how are people going to get from home to work” was not anticipated in the planning, and now we have to do the best we can with what they’ve given us.  I am fortunate in that I have a couple of NORTH-SOUTH options, but when it comes to EAST-WEST, I’m stymied for an alternate route.  (But it’s only been 2 weeks… give me a little time to figure it out!)  It took about 2 1/2 hours to get home — a MAJOR DOWNWARD NOSEDIVE!

OH… here’s the upswing… I didn’t have to work on Saturday morning!  Job 2 has gone by the wayside.  My last day was the day before Halloween, when I wore my home-made pumpkin shirt and tutu, and then bid them a fond adieu as I drove away as a ‘former employee’.  I have to confess, I’m not unhappy about the fact that BLACK FRIDAY and I will not meet!  I loathe Black Friday and all it stands for, and until Job 2, I DID NOT LEAVE MY HOUSE on that day.  I would spend the day baking cookies, as it was meant to be!  I shall take up my spatula and continue this happy tradition again this year!

I’m still a little shaky about the morning commute — which begins in the dark and ends in accidentthe light.  I hate changing lanes on the highway in the dark.  The aforementioned traffic is compounded by people who don’t bother to use directional signals when they change lanes at will while maneuvering through traffic and going at least 65 m.p.h.  I’m never sure, when I look in my mirrors and out my windows, if the idiot in the next lane is going to decide at the exact same second to move into the lane I want to be in.  I have seen 1 “near” accident (homebound) in front of me and one van that rolled over just behind me in just 2 weeks. 

So, a week before Thanksgiving and I’m still roller-coastering up and down the hills and valleys of happiness and apprehension.  But, 🙂  MUCH more happiness!

I’ll try to post more, now that I’m not doing Job 2, but my former “near-dead computer issue” is still not resolved, and I shy away from sitting by the danged thing for long.  I know, a first world problem.

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