Let me break down my day for you: I’m up at 7:00. From 7:00 to 7:08, I brush, shave, shower, <parp>. From 7:08 to 7:09, I frantically eat Grape-Nuts. Then I have until 7:45 to take out the trash, mow the lawn, and feed Klaus his omelette. Drive Steve to school and pick up Roger’s dry cleaning, park, coffee, desk. 9:11 to 9:12, think about 9/11.
–Stan Smith, American Dad! (S7E01, “Hot Water”)
I always seem to end up with several things happening at once, and not enough time for them all to happen in… and I don’t have time right now to rewrite that opening sentence so that it scans properly, so tough, that’s how it is! At least events have conspired this week to ensure I’m not short of time after all: “best mate” wasn’t available to climb tonight, and the Japanese girl I met on Monday hasn’t texted back to say she’d like to meet after work tomorrow, just before I have to attend a salsa class, though Friday will still hopefully see me hanging out with my yoga buddies after my personal training session.
No, my timing issue relates to the coming months: my American roommate’s brother has invited me over to visit the family in Michigan during the summer, but before August as that’s when they’re moving to Washington (state) to be near the daughter of the family, who’s about to give birth. I’m hoping money won’t be a problem if I can get cheap tickets (certainly cheaper than the ridiculously expensive ones I got to Los Angeles last year, which almost doubled the cost of my holiday!), but how I time things will be critical.
As you’re probably aware from how often I’ve mentioned it here, my current job is coming to an end soon, which will leave me free to accept my IT agency’s first offer of a short-term unpaid placement, followed by a “proper” job in IT once I’m suitably experienced. However, the issue is, will I have the time? My workplace may be keeping me on past June and well into July (as the start of June is when they’ll start my notice period, which will be the same number of weeks as the number of years I’ve worked there, i.e. nearly eight), and if that’s the case, my problem may well be solved: I can take my last few days’ annual leave during this period, see my “second family” one more time, and be back for my career change without problem (and probably without having missed any work). Alternately, however, my workplace might kick me to the kerb during June, meaning I’d have to tell my agency that I’m going away for a week before I can do their thing…
I’ve been to see my “second family” in Michigan several times since their eldest was my roommate during the 1998-9 academic year, always invited by roomie’s younger brother; apart from 2001, it always seems to be when time is tight. In 2003 I went to visit for two weeks just before I first came to London for my postgrad course, at around the same time that my mother and grandmother went off on holiday. In 2006 I went over for a week to attend younger brother’s wedding, which happened to have been arranged for the exact weekend that I was supposed to be moving to Caledonian Road with “good housemate” and “female best friend”, who had to move my boxes of stuff without me (though I helped move more things upon my return). Oh, I remember enjoying that trip in particular, and almost crying on the flight home, as I couldn’t face what lay ahead… and then in 2007 I was invited over for another week, this time for the younger sister’s wedding, just as my job in HR (for the same employer I have now) was changing into a new form.
Oh, and on that note, earlier in 2006 I went to the Lake District with various friends, including “good housemate”, “female best friend”, “other female best friend”, “other female best friend’s then-boyfriend” (the guy with the Jack Russell) and two other friends of “other female best friend’s then-boyfriend”… got all that? Good — this trip coincided with me being made permanent in HR, which occurred in late July, a date which forms the reset point for my annual leave year. I wonder if I’ll still be working for my current employer when I reach the eighth anniversary of that day… I may have to be, if I want to make use of my remaining annual leave dates in order to visit Michigan one last time without having to make my potential new IT employer wait!
At least I’ve already passed the exams I need to, and can study Server 2008 at my leisure — though annoyingly the jolly Northern English bloke who does most of the videos is occasionally replaced by the annoying Canadian bloke from the Win7 module whenever they need to talk about the features introduced in Server 2008 R2… oh, sorry, you’ve lost interest?