Friday, June 28, 2002

Can we spell "dork"? I think it starts with Betsy. I packed up all my "7 things" packages and mailed them at the post office this morning, but I forgot to pick up the registered letter that I have had sitting there for a week. (I know what it is and it's not too time sensitive. Argh! It's only 5 blocks away, but it's not like I have all day to run errands. I guess I'll go back a bit later, after I pick up my dry cleaning, pack, and have something to eat.

Our flight is at 6:05 from Newark, so we decided to take NJ Transit to the AirTrain rather than sit in traffic in a cab or car service. It's apparently only 20 minutes from Penn Station to the airport, and then a few more on the monorail inside the airport, and friends of friends have given it good reviews. Even though it means cabbing up to Penn with my luggage around 2:30, anything is better than getting stuck in weekend Jersey Shore-bound traffic and worrying about missing our flight.

I am mostly prepared, though not packed. I just bought a whole bunch of travel sized stuff, plus earplugs and travel wristbands (I don't get motion sick all the time, but I figured it can't hurt). Actually I got the wristbands because one of you knitters mentioned they really worked on your blog - thanks, whoever it was! Small problem - I don't seem to have a size 6 bamboo circ to replace the Addis that my boat neck is currently on. Hmmm. We'll tackle that issue later.

Not sure if I will get to post again before I go, so I will say goodbye now, and wish everyone a very happy two weeks! Do stop in once in a while - I'll probably have a chance to add some updates from the road, and you wouldn't want to miss those, would you?!

Thursday, June 27, 2002

Very busy and tense this morning. I sort of screwed something up yesterday - missed an internal deadline, and my boss and the lead writer on this project weren't really thrilled about it. No big deal, as it was a totally artificial deadline that had zero to do with the project going to the client, but it wasn't fun, either. I sort of misunderstood what was expected as far as the timing, and sort of spaced - maybe 50-50 on each. Anyway, I stuck around an extra hour and a half to finish it up and had it ready for 9 a.m. today. And everyone's acting fine, so I don't think I did any real damage.

Except to my sleep, since I tak these things really hard. I don't think I've ever missed a deadline before, so I was totally mortified and felt like a big jerk. And I couldn't articulate very well what had happened, so I felt like I either looked (a) lazy or (b) disorganized or (c) incompetent. Now, I'm sure no one else took it as seriously as all that, but I did. Had to get a back rub from Ryan AND take a bath with Gloomaway (another great birthday gift from that sweet boy!) in order to shake it even halfway off. Yes, I'm a bit high-strung. Particularly right before vacation.

Tonight, Mom and Dad are coming to get the kitty, who I will miss terribly. But I'll be much happier knowing she is frolicking at their house than I would be if she were at my place all alone for so much of the time. After that, I need to get packing. I'm going to do my absolute best to bring as few clothes as possible, and only stuff that can be worn in various combinations (except for a few lightweight silk dresses that take up almost no room). Even if I have to leave something cute at home, I am going to be a good packer!

Didn't get any work done on the melon boatneck since yesterday. Still debating the knitting-in-air thing, but I think I have it down to this: I will bring a larger-than-usual purse, one that can hold my reading material, as well as the green carry-on overnighter that came with my luggage. So if they won't allow the knitting, I can check it through in the overnighter, but still put my reading and other in-flight essentials in the purse. If worse comes to worse, at least maybe I can knit at the airport while we wait.

Wednesday, June 26, 2002

Made a happy discovery this morning at work - the fridge here has an ice maker. So what? Well, I've recently become addicted to this jasmine green tea that they sell in bottles at the grocery downstairs. It's unsweetened and delicious, and it's also imported from Japan and costs something like 2 bucks a bottle. This morning I realized I have jasmine tea bags here, so if there were ice in the freezer, I could make my own. Yay me! It's tough being one of the few people in the world who don't drink coffee.

I came close to finishing the first side of my boat neck tank at Stitch-n-Bitch last night. Actually, I am a few rows ahead of this pic now, since I did the neck shaping for the first side and am at the point of re-attaching the yarn for the other side now. I was conveniently located a few inches from the end of the ball I was using just as I had to cast off. Love when that happens. As you can see, because of my orange yarn deficiency, I decided to do the top in solid green, and actually I really like the way it looks.

Not sure if I'll get the second side done before we leave Friday, though now that I won't have to frog it, go up to the yarn store, knit and frog again, maybe it will go a bit faster. Not that a week is a terribly long time (I started this at S-n-B last Tuesday night) but the frustration made it seem longer to me.

I am still debating what to do about the plane and knitting. So many people have said they got on no problem, and the yarn store owner told me she flies all the time with metal circs and no problems. I don't know if it's going to make a difference that I am flying out of Newark, since they may have tighter security these days. I wish there some definitive information to rely on here, because I don't want to cause any problems for myself OR others. If someone could give me a yes or no, it'd make this all much easier. I'm willing to read and do crosswords and sleep if I can't knit, but if I can knit, that would be way more satisfying.

Since I'm on the subject, here's the overview of our itinerary:

  • Friday, July 28 - Fly to Paris, land Saturday the 29th, meet Kristy and Tom (Ryan's sister and her boyfriend, flying from LA), hop on a TGV (high speed train) to Avignon, where Ryan's parents will pick us up and take us to the house we're staying in, in the town of Goult.
  • Friday, July 5th - Another TGV from Avignon to Nice, spend the day in Nice and then take an overnight train to Rome, where we'll arrive early in the morning and spend the night. Our hotel appears to be near a Filatura di Crosa store, so I'm hoping to sneak in there for a bit.
  • Sunday, July 7th - Eurostar Italia to Naples, where we're planning to see (among other things) the Capodimonte Museum. We'll spend the night here, too.
  • Monday, July 8th - Down to Praiano, on the Amalfi coast, where we'll spend 2 nights, including visits to Pompeii/Vesuvius and Positano.
  • Wednesday, July 10th - Bus up the Amalfi Drive to Sorrento and get the ferry over to Capri, where we're staying 2 nights at our fancy-schmancy pick of the trip. Definitely heading to the Blue Grotto and the Natural Arch.
  • Friday, July 12th - Ferry back to Naples, back to the hotel we started the week at. See whatever we can that we've missed, try not to cry thinking about tomorrow's 7:05 a.m. flight home!
  • Saturday July 13th - Take aforementioned early flight, change in Rome, arrive at Newark just before 2 p.m. and haul ourselves back to the city before we collapse!

Well, that's probably more than anyone really truly wanted to know, but it saves me having to email that info to my parents, etc.

Now, it's 9:33 a.m. when I am writing this monster of a post, and of course my office's network is down so I can't post it. Curious to see when it actually makes it online!

Tuesday, June 25, 2002

Oh I am having SUCH a frustrating day I could just SCREAM! Actually I compensated by closing the door and throwing my moisturizer bottle at it. I am so violent.

The account manager on the account that I am supposed to be the lead writer on is a nut. This is the same lady I went to Philadelphia with. Long story short, I discussed some of the issues with my boss a few weeks ago, because she was so unexpectedly rude to me that I felt I couldn't talk to her. He told me many people have had issues with her, and that he had already discussed it with her boss, but would do so again. (Now, this woman actually badmouthed said boss at the end of our Friday meeting, in front of several other colleagues, including people who've worked with him for years, as opposed to the 5 months or so that she has been here. She followed that up with "we know that all of that stays in this room" - can we spell stupid?!).

Anyway, somehow, she has the impression that I am at fault now, because I didn't go directly to her (after she sent me rude emails, spoke to me rudely and hung up the phone on me and never apologized for any of it). I think she has gotten the idea that I am the weakest antelope in the herd, so she can take her anger and frustration out on me and it'll be OK. Ugh. In some ways she's right - I hate to "fight" and generally try and avoid the confrontation.

Anyway, this has given me a big headache today. And of course we have a meeting with her in an hour to go over some project stuff. Fine, whatever - if she wants to be the nasty one and make it out like it's actually me, I just refuse to participate in the game. Going to go about my business, get my work done, and save every nasty email or comment in case I need them later. Oh how fun it isn't.

Hmm, how many working hours left before vacation? Let's see, about 20, total. How bad can 20 hours be, right?
Yet another morning when I woke up before the alarm. 6:55 today. Of course, heaven forbids that I should use that extra time wisely and productively. I thought about coming into work early, but that didn't happen. I think the problem is that since I am not all happy and rested when I wake up early, I just don't have any motivation to do anything but laze around. Maybe my vacation will fix this. Then again, when I return, I will be so temporally challenged that anything could happen.

Totally blew my knitting plans last night. After getting a pedicure (with little flowers on my big toes!) and some other girlie stuff done at Bliss, I wandered through a few stores and arrived home around 8:30. Then my friend Paul started IMing me and talked me into going out for ice cream with him. We sat and chatted in the park by my house for about an hour, because it was such a nice night to be outside, and when I got home I didn't do much other than wash up, talk to Ryan, and go to sleep.

I am still debating the whole stripes thing on this tank and what to do with the top. After measuring some other tanks I like, I decided to shorten the length to the armhole to around 13", rather then the 15 in the pattern. And now I am looking at the amount of orange yarn I have left and wondering whether I might actually be able to go all stripey or still have to do the solid top or some other variation. You'd think this was brain surgery. I decided to just throw all the orange I have into my bag and see what others think at Stitch-n-Bitch tonight. Lucky for me, this is a very sturdy yarn that hasn't a care in the world about being frogged multiple times!

Monday, June 24, 2002

Yesterdays Mets game was lots of fun! Didn't spark Ryan's interest in baseball per se, but he enjoyed himself and seemed willing to go back someday, as long as it's not a regular thing. Fine by me! Free tix make it more fun, of course. It was super hot and sweaty, but I only got a little sunburnt, and considering I had only managed to put sunscreen on my arms and shoulders, forgetting my legs, I feel lucky. I don't want to be too redundant, so check out ryanimator for a pic of us at the game.

I did make it up to the Yarn Co. on Saturday and picked up two more balls of the Topas in green (they were all out of the orange). I think what I am going to do is keep the bottom striped and just work the top in solid green. Should be OK, and I think that is probably the color that looks better next to my face anyway. Now there's just the doubt over whether this is too wide. I made the pattern smaller by an inch, but it is still a good bit wider than the last tank I made. Then again, this yarn might be nicer a bit looser. Or it might not. Well, the worst that happens is I frog, frog again. Hopefully by tomorrow's Stitch-n-Bitch I'll have figured out exactly where I want to start the green. Jordana, at the Yarn Co., said start it around the armholes, but I'm not sure. Might be nicer to start it a bit lower, kind of where an Empire waist would be. Decisions, decisions!

Just 3 more days of work until vacation. We leave Friday evening. I can't believe after all these months of planning, it's almost upon us!