Thursday, April 23, 2009

Green Grass and Garbage

After several horrific weeks of 6:00AM to Midnight, Monday through Saturday crying tears of blood into 2,000 page law books, God decided to give us some sunny warm days. Afraid that these would be the only sunny days of the year, days which were still crammed full of studying for finals, my friend Corey and I decided to take our studies outside, positive that we could be just as effective outdoors. Exactly 43 minutes later this happened:

You'll notice that in Corey's left hand is her firmly grasped phone which she had been using to text. So before the sleeping, there was texting. Seconds after I snapped that shot I remarkably passed out again, leaving me open for Corey to wake up and take this freakish alien picture of myself. The next day we studied inside.On a side note, you see this garbage can here? I pass this can in the law building about 50 times a day. I only recently noticed the inscription on the top.
I would really like to know who this guy ticked off.
~It Just Gets Stranger

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Goodbye My Friend

Yesterday was my last day of work at a job I've had for about 3 and a half years. I've always known that when the final day actually came I would have a really hard time leaving. I've loved that job and the company that I worked for very much and I'm a very different person because of my experiences there. I've had to grow up quite a bit and learn to take on some very unique responsibilities and challenges (some of you are shaking your heads in memory of all of my previous work posts involving some of the ridiculous things I've spent my time at work doing; I won't try to convince you either way).

I worked at a bank and helped open a new branch in Lindon at the end of 2005. I still remember so well how nervous I was. I remember going and seeing the building before construction was completed. I remember helping organize and advertise and prepare the branch to be introduced to the community. I remember the small group of us (most of whom had no idea what we were doing) trying to build that branch into something to be proud of. It seems so long ago to me now. We worked so hard to create business and turn that place into something that I was really proud of. I remember 2 or 3 years later being so amazed when thinking about how far we had come and how well we were functioning. There were a lot of really hard and frustrating days. A lot of really sad experiences along the way. A lot of really great friendships built. A lot of funny and touching experiences I'll take with me for the rest of my life.

Because the company was bought by another company several months ago, our little branch has slowly been going through some changes since. This weekend they finally started remodeling the branch (a massive remodel--knocking down walls and so forth). So I spent my last day doing the exact opposite of my first; I helped throw things away and rip things down to prepare the branch to change into something entirely new. It was really fitting I suppose to be going through all the little reminders on my last day of experiences we had had throughout these last few years.

Nonetheless, I couldn't help but feel incredibly nostalgic and a bit sad as I dejunked and prepared to leave. For a few hours, all the unbelievable stress of finals and preparing to fly out for the summer went to the back burner while I had some good reflective time. The moment wasn't even ruined by my boss who, as his last words, said "thanks for all the effort. Don't let the door hit you on the way out" accompanied by a loud cackling laugh (Meryl always knows how to create special memories).

I'm always waiting for this point in life where I no longer have to learn how to move on and deal with change. But I'm finding that as I get older, not only do the changes happen with more regularity, but they are also more significant. Maybe before too long that will slow down. Or maybe it will just keep precipitating into something more and more dramatic. Either way, I hope that through all the change I never become calloused enough to stop appreciating the fact that I still have things in my life that I'm sad to see go.

~It Just Gets Stranger

Thursday, April 9, 2009


These two girls in my contracts class are making candy necklaces. Gosh I love contracts.

String: 20 cents
Candy: $2.25
Seeing the looks on their faces when I email them a link to this blog post in about 30 seconds: Priceless

~It Just Gets Stranger

Sunday, April 5, 2009

And So It Goes

Still alive and kickin'. By way of update, after a very dramatic several weeks and hundreds of desperate emails, it seems my housing in Moscow is worked out. More on that later . . .

As finals approach and deadlines for big decisions arrive, I'm finding that there aren't enough hours in the day. I try to cheat by multi-tasking every second. As I type now, I'm doing laundry, practicing my yoga, knitting sweaters for Siberians, teaching Cambodian to Colombians, and reading half a page out of Crime and Punishment which I started reading in June 2006 (I'm on pace to have it done November 2017). Well I wish I was that productive anyway.

Instead, my laundry is piling up, forcing me to wear my "I volunteer at headstart! What about you?" t-shirt, which is an absolute lie as I failed miserably to continue to attend just a few days after the program issued the clothing. My Sunday school lessons don't quite get planned by Sunday School. My books don't quite get read by class-time. And my friends and family don't quite get their phone calls returned in time for them to be relevant.

On Monday I got up early. Ate a Fiber One bar and an orange. Tried desperately to catch up on my reading before an early class. Didn't quite make it. Got a disappointing email; time to house-hunt in Moscow again. Got called on in class. Fudged through an answer. Went to Criminal Law. Learned about domestic abuse. Sent 10 emails to people on the other side of the world. Got out of Criminal Law. Tried desperately to catch up on my reading before afternoon classes. Didn't quite make it. Passed up on a Diet Coke on the way to Contracts (too many lately). Ate another orange and a sandwich. Learned about contracts. Got out of class. Went to Elements of the Law. Stared blankly for one hour and fifteen minutes. Got out of class. Bewildered. Found solace back at my carrel in a bag of Swedish Fish. An entire bag. Started reading. Then a meeting. Then more reading. Time for that Diet Coke; I made it until 5:00. Not so bad. Then another meeting. Group study. Arguments. Frantic struggle to find organization. More reading. Darn, it's 8:30; I was going to go workout at 7:00. The gym bag I packed last Thursday will stay in my car a little longer. More reading. Outlining. Trying to keep up with 147 of the smartest people I've ever known. Time to go home. Wondered if the grocery store was still open at 11:30. The thought of grocery shopping made me queasy. Decided not to check. Too bad as I think I ate my last two oranges. Read my scriptures. Checked my email. Nothing yet. Climbed into bed, trying not to think about the day. Sleep is necessary and the next one starts again in less than five hours. Four now; relax; need sleep. Now three. Fall asleep you idiot! A little panicking. Heart racing a bit. Finally fast asleep. Two hours later the alarm went off. Tuesday had begun. More of the same on Tuesday. Repeat on Wednesday. Repeat on Thursday but add a few hours at the bank (some of my last). Repeat. Repeat again on Saturday but subtract classes and add General Conference. Sunday; a day of rest, and now, blogging.

And tomorrow we start again. Thank heavens it isn't always like this.

Most days at school are a chain of frustration and discouragement. Feeling lost and behind. Often feeling a little dumb. And then every once in a while there are tiny break-throughs, which thankfully are just good enough and just often enough to make me absolutely love what I'm doing; frustration and all.

~It Just Gets Stranger