Archive | October, 2011

Apartment Hunt Part 2, Round 2…..SUCCESS!

31 Oct

Just a few weeks ago, I restarted my apartment hunt, and just last night, I moved in!

Yeaaahhhhh….life’s been a bit of a blur lately, and my apartment hunt was even more speedy–I looked at one place and signed the papers! Technically, this was the 14th place I had seen overall, if you count my ill-fated attempts with Mr. Smokestack  a few months ago. But the apartment is beautiful, naturally outside my price range, but not outrageously so, and the clincher: It’s 20 MINUTES FROM WORK. I don’t think I had admired the atomic clock on the stove for more than 15 seconds before I was signing the lease and whipping off certified checks like I had been born with a pen in my hand! The place just felt like mine though….the timing was right, the savings had been saved, and if I had to suffer through one more soul-crushing commute, I was literally going to kill someone. Times were dire, let me tell ya. Plus, did I mention it has a fireplace? A fireplace, people. I can’t get over it.

Of course, the second my brain was filled with apartment details, my work day was filled with insanity, and it’s been a crazy few weeks trying to find time to fit it all in. For the past two weeks, I’d been getting home at 9:30, scarfing down cereal, and then rushing down to an unheated basement to paint my old furniture. Then it was back up to my laptop to spend a ridiculous amount of time planning my bathroom color scheme, which never materialized, and picking a couch, which barely did….but more on that later.

So many more details to share, but now it’s time to hop on the subway and unlock my front door….all before 7 pm! I never thought I’d ever look forward to an evening commute, but it looks like there’s always room for change!

Twelve

28 Oct

Today ends the longest swath of time I have worked consecutively….a whopping twelve days in a row! This officially takes my workaholic status to new heights.

It’s been an intense twelve days! Last week was spent in a manic haze making never-ending arrangements for my business trip, the weekend was spent praying to God all those arrangements took flight, and this week has been spent making more arrangements for different projects, while working on two others at the same time. No surprise, I’m tired and am getting a cold. I might even have a fever. Sigh.

Listen, I love my job, but twelve days of it is a little much. Sometimes I find the weekends a little boring, but now every minute of this day is dragging! I can’t wait to get home, put on my pajamas, and not move from the couch. I can’t wait to do my laundry! (And neither can my coworkers….) I can’t wait to eat a meal that’s not microwaved!

The crazy thing about this job is that I will spend the next two weeks running around like a maniac working to get our project to air, and then will promptly spend the following two weeks twiddling my thumbs. I’ll be aching for the frenetic pace of my days now, ready to pounce on any task that’s handed over. But right now, I just want to sleep in past 7 am. Please. That’s all I want. And of course a non-traumatizing Friday-night commute. Now that  may be too impossible a feat.

Mission Accomplished

26 Oct

Aaaaannnnd I still have a job! Phew! I kid, I kid, but this weekend went really quite wonderfully! Everyone made their flights, saving me from making frantic phone calls to our corporate travel department, everyone had a hotel room, saving me from sleeping in the lobby of the Opryland Hotel, and the catering showed up, saving us all from being hungry.  Things pretty much went on without a hitch, and I got to enjoy some bonding time with my boss, free meals, and a king sized bed! Business trips are awesome.

The best thing about this weekend was the group dinner on Friday night. Everyone on the trip got together to swap stories and share a (rather expensive, though not on my dime!) meal, and it was actually a little surreal! I remember not too long ago being enamored and intimidated by the higher-ups and successful journalists I work with, and now I was sitting across the table from them! It was like all of my career aspirations were in the flesh, picking at pistachio crusted salmon and dabbing sauce off their chins. Pretty weird.

For my part, I managed to remain relatively calm and non-awkward throughout the weekend. I refrained from my horrible, mildly offensive Southern accent,  made charming conversation, and shook hands and made eye contact at the appropriate times. And when I got on the plane Sunday night, I breathed a sigh of relief that lasted until we pulled up to the gate at Laguardia airport!

A Week of Many Hats

20 Oct

Ommmmmmmm. Ommmmmmm.

That’s my attempt at actually taking a spare second to relax this week! What a crazy couple of days…I am–once again–ramping up for a business trip this weekend! But this ain’t no car ride through New England–this is a 3-day, big south,  Nashville, Tennessee extravaganza! Or hopefully it will be, if all goes as planned.

All week, I’ve essentially been in charge of making sure all the logistics for this trip are organized and executed. T’s are crossed, I’s are dotted, lines are signed. Basically, this means that since Monday,  I’ve been a travel agent, hotel concierge, National Rental Car associate, catering specialist, PR person, tech wiz, secretary, activity coordinator, professional organizer, personal scheduler, and general question hotline operator. And tomorrow is the day when it all goes down!

Needless to say, I’m a little tense.  This is the biggest project I’ve had to organize at work, and the sheer amount of details seem to reproduce and double over night! I know everyone will make their flights, I know everyone will be staying in their hotels, I know catering will arrive, people will show up, and shows will go on. But the fact that it all swings back to me is a little intimidating!

But if I wasn’t working on all of this, I don’t know what I would be doing. I love to be at the helm of projects, the lady in charge! Plus, this is the perfect opportunity to exhibit all of my Type A personality traits! Organized binder with color coded tabs? Check. Master contact sheet and itemized daily schedule? Check. My job security at the end of this weekend? ….Too soon to tell.

Apartment Hunt, Round 2, Part 1

17 Oct

Please. You all knew this was coming. The second I signed my offer letter I was back on the time-suck of doom, aka Craigslist, looking for apartments. My criteria this time was simple: My apartment must be less than three hours away from my workplace. Considering that pretty much any other place in the WORLD would fit this criteria, it really left the field wide open!

My last apartment-hunting excursion was eye-opening, because I finally got the picture that living in New York City is WOAH. EXPENSIVE. That sentiment then basically overpowered my entire search. A one bedroom apartment in an area I like, close to an express train? WOAH. EXPENSIVE. A studio apartment with all utilities included? WOAH. EXPENSIVE. The realization that 75% of my paycheck would be going towards my apartment? WOAH. REALLY EXPENSIVE!

Needless to say, I didn’t get an apartment six months ago, but times have changed, paychecks have fattened (slightly) and ends of ropes have arrived. Naturally, my internet search became all-encompassing, and I learned some things about New York I didn’t know before. For example, did you know that the Upper West Side apparently runs from 59th street right up to the Bronx? Or how about the little-known fact that Columbia University spans about 80 square blocks? O, you didn’t know that? O, because actually that’s not true? Huh. Strange.

Apartment hunting in New York is just so overwhelming. So many places, so many Google maps to peruse, so much guilt over the obscene amount of time I spend online looking! But in the end, this is going to be my home. So if I’m going to do it, I better do it right.

Déjà Vu, With Friends

13 Oct

This past weekend, I spent a lovely few days down in Princeton with my friends, catching up on life  and eating an insane amount of apples and apple-filled desserts. It was divine.

What was also divine, although perhaps perversely so, was the happy realization that all my friends are now LIVING MY LIFE. I graduated college a year before them, and succumbed to the slap in the face of real life with insane amounts of moaning and rivers worth of tears while they were looking at me strangely and enjoying daily happy hours. They seem to be handling the college-to-post-college transition with a bit more grace, but nevertheless, our conversations this weekend were populated with work talk, our lack of social lives, and the fact we can no longer watch tv shows longer than 22 minutes, since it cuts into our sleep schedules. I AM NOT THE ONLY GRANDMA IN THE HOUSE ANYMORE!

I kid (about them….I still need my sleep!). I love my friends, and have said many times I don’t know how I would’ve gotten through the past year and a half without them, but it is kind of great to see them going through what I’ve been going through, if solely for the fact that they no longer think I’m completely insane. Which is always a good thing when it comes to building these lasting relationships, in my personal opinion.

It’s All Happening!!!

10 Oct

So….OMG….this is big….this is happening….this is real…..and I’m telling you….very shortly…..it’s exciting….I’m stalling….is this funny yet?….. it is to me….. because….. well…. really…. um…….

I GOT PROMOTED!!!!!

Yes! It happened! I cried! I’m happy! I can’t speak in full sentences! I’m overwhelmed! IT’S REAL!! But the story is this: a few weeks ago, a full-time position opened up for the job I have, and naturally, I applied and then immediately started freaking out about it. Mostly I freaked out about the imminent mental breakdown that would occur if I didn’t get it. Although looking back, I did try my best to stay level-headed, because I really felt like I had done everything I could to prove that I deserved this job. It’s been an amazing six months, so at least I could leave on a high, knowing I gave it my all.

Yea….but actually I was FREAKING OUT. To cope, I devised my unemployment plan, which involved me driving to the Catskills to become one with nature and draft my memoirs among the thickets and ember-colored foliage. I’d go on nature walks, take artistic photos of ferns and meditate beneath the setting sun. Then I would go home, refreshed, and find another job. Simple as pie, right?

Well, I think we can all deduce that that’s not exactly how it would happen. This was just something I wanted so badly I almost couldn’t bear to think of what would happen if I didn’t get it. I just love this job, and have known for so long that this is what I want to be doing that I can’t even begin to describe the overwhelming sense of relief when my boss told me the news. I literally thought I was going to cry….tears of joy this time! Thankfully, I held it together, and then proceeded to take out a billboard in Times Square to announce the news!

So it was all worth it–my mind-numbing first job, my exhausting second job, the months of angst, the commutes, the tears, the life-doubting, the highs, the lows…. it was all worth it in the end! And now I can look for apartments! Dreams really do come true!