Tuesday, May 29, 2007

To jump or not to jump, that is the question...

This ranting may seem a little vague at times. Again, this is to protect the innocent.

My job search and life lessons continue. This brief stint in Switzerland has been eventful. Today I met with an individual from my Aunt's church who runs a Non-profit right here in Nyon. He was extremely encouraging and affirming giving me advice and suggestions in my constant job pursuit. He reaffirmed what I have suspected all along for my field of choice, its who you know. Contacts and contacts of friends helps incredibly when getting started in the field of human rights when one does not have the experience desired for both self and employer. Still a bit lost in where I'll end up geographically. Originally I had a narrow field of vission but that has seemed to open up more and more to include not only D.C. and NY but various other US cities. The question now is how and where do I continue to pursue what I want. If no job is to be had before either the summer or my money runs out what comes next? Meeting new people while here opened up all sorts of questions for me. How far does one go to pursue a possibility when one is unsure of what that possibility even is? In my meeting today I was told that face to face meetings, constant pursuing and gentle but firm pressure is what is needed to get your foot in the door. Does that go for other aspects of one's life as well?

Id like to say a quick 'I told you so'. I have for a number of years worn a ring on my left hand ring finger. I have been often asked why a single gal such as myself would dare to wear a ring (even though it looks nothing like a wedding or engagement ring) on such a prominent finger. "Dont you want a boyfriend" has even been concernedly asked by someone I worked with one summer. My response has always been the same, I dont care to talk to someone who's only reason for talking to me is based on whether I wear a ring or not. I am interesting, unique and have lots to contribute and if you dont want to talk to me based on my supposed eligibility well thats fine with me. The case arose recently that proved that wearing a ring on 'that' finger certainly doesnt stop individuals from talking, dare I even say flirting with you. So, I told you so.

Monday, May 21, 2007

The past week has been a flurry of adventure and fun filled business. Kayaking in France, was particularly adventurous for a non-active, inside girl such as myself. Having gone white-water rafting on the Nile in class 5 rapids, I spent a lot of time mentally preparing myself for flips in ridiculously large rapids, gulps of questionable water being inhaled as waves crashed into the rather small apparatus I had, perhaps wrongly, chosen to be in for the next 8 hours. With each rapid, although not extremely large, I none-the-less squealed, yelled or flat out screamed. Not sure if the French were quite as amused as my cousin was at my expression of emotion. My biggest fear for the day was that I would be thrown into the glacier cold water. My expert kayaking partner assured me that I would not be thrown in while going threw a rapid. What I was more concerned about was that the two boys in our party would throw me in as it seemed to be their mission for the day to see me dunked. Sadly they managed to accomplish that mission. After much screaming, threats on life and limb and even jumping into their kayak to avoid the tipping of the one I was in. This however only resulted in them jumping into mine and successfully plunging me into the freezing cold water. My next issue was then getting back into the kyak while still in the water. This can be a very humorous thing to watch and an extremely challenging thing to do. Legs flail, arms struggle to pull the dead wait out of the water and laughter ensues causing any and all strength left to immediately vanish. I was finally pulled into the kayak like a giant dead fish flung into the boat. Hiking was more my style of an outdoor activity. I climbed up rocks, clamored across fallen trees and jumped from rock to rock across streams.

With a week and a half until my short stop over in London before my trip home and my papers behind me, Im watching after my cousin's kids, changing diapers and wiping sticky hands.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Monday- The Grand Day Out.
Met up with a friend who is in London for the week on business. We chatted in her hotel room, as I perused the celebrity magazines she always purchases before traveling. We headed over to Hyde Park laughing and talking with ease as if we still lived together. The weather was perfect for the hours we spent walking from London park to London park. Before dinner we purchased a 2 litre bottle of hard cider, which I managed to drop before leaving the store. Needless to say we did not have any cider that night for fear of a cider explosion. After dinner at a delicious Indian restaurant we walked back to her hotel, where I only stayed for another hour or so. Once my jet lagged friend started falling asleep between sentences I thought it best to leave her to regain consciousness after a goodnights sleep.

The two of us headed to Oxford Street to do a little shopping and lots more walking. After much searching we found a pub in Leicester Square to have a late lunch. I returned to east London around 3:30pm to prepare for my final class of grad school- ever. The night was unremarkable. Class went as usual, with the except that only three other of my classmates showed up for the last class of the semester. A fellow classmate and I headed to the local pub to celebrate having made it through the year with a pint.

After a good lie-in I packed up my laptop and headed to Earl’s Court Exhibition Centre to join my working compatriot. As I waited for her to finish with perspective clients, I was approached by a photographer. I kid you not when I say he came up to me and said I looked very photogenic and wanted to use me as a model for a few pictures. After my photo shoot I joined my friend as we anxiously waited for the day to end. We then ventured into Chinatown for dinner, and then headed off to the theatre for a play.

I met up with my friend at the conference and we spent the afternoon giggling and talking wedding details. When the conference finally came to an end we headed to Tesco for some random dinner. With an indi-movie on we had enjoyed grapes and cheese and crackers.

With my trip back to Chicago in exactly three weeks I’ve been anxious to finish my papers and dissertation proposal. With two of my three papers handed in along with my dissertation proposal, packing is next on my agenda.