My company moves to a new building. My office with a door is replaced with an open cubicle. My co-workers and I collectively mourn our loss of privacy. However we rejoice in the perfect little gym across the courtyard that includes towel service and individual showers.
Due to icy weather conditions, my director can't make it to the casting of my play. I do it myself. I sit through two days of auditions and call-backs to select the cast.
I endure pre-LASIK evaluations and figure out my medical bills.
Mid-January, I call the cops on the landlord's son -- I don't know it is his son at the time. Sounds like people are arguing, physically fighting, and abusing a dog.
See k.d. lang in concert.
Jer and I finally hike to Inspiration Point.
I am interviewed -- along with the other ten-minute playwrights in our set -- by the local paper and a photographer takes our picture.
LASIK. I sleep in goggles for a week. Listen to Lenny Bruce and eat Lean Cuisine pizzas. Use many types of eye drops, have my tear ducts plugged with wax, and have a tiny scare where my right eye doesn't heal fast enough.
Attend lots of rehearsals in dirty classrooms at the university, run-throughs, dress rehearsals, a tech rehearsal, opening night downtown, and the entire run of my play. Friends fly in from out of town, drive down the coast, lots of excitement and surprise.
Arthur Miller dies.
My interview appears in the local paper. It is mostly positive.
I see Lily Tomlin perform.
Our group of playwrights is panned in both local papers. My play isn't panned as bad as the others, but my name is spelled wrong.
I start playing World of Warcraft.
Chiana is spayed and injected with a HomeAgain ID chip.
I play lots and lots of Warcraft.
Playwriting workshop starts again.
Start buying stuff for our upcoming Yosemite trip. Read Bill Buford's "Among the Thugs." See a couple of plays.
I buy a Nikon D70, my dream camera. Sell my F100 on ebay. Buy a hard drive enclosure so I can store photographs on the road.
Infect my computer with spyware from negativebeats.com.
Decorate a fan with heavy metal clippings and stickers for a co-worker's last day. Drink my first Bloody Mary.
Read "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas." Write a play. Watch "Sin City." Discover Regina Spektor.
Jer and I visit the Rancho Guadalupe Dunes County Park and Nojoqui Falls so I can practice my picture taking.
Jer and I celebrate our five-year anniversary.
Ultrasound on my throat. Some minor medical drama.
Jury duty. AKA big waste of time.
Buy a Coach purse on ebay. Figure out how to make an eyecup for the D70.
Jer and I leave for Yosemite.
Yosemite... Rent bikes and ride around the valley, eat a fancy dinner at the Yosemite Mountain Lodge, hike to the top of Sentinel Dome in the snow, stay at Curry Village in a tent cabin, see a bear.
Visit the Ventura County Greek Festival. Eat too much.
On June 16, hear the first rumor that I may lose my job, along with everyone else at our site.
Most of the month is spent wondering and worrying about work and making budget plans in the event I'm actually laid off. I maintain the hope that I'll be offered relocation, and there is lots of whispering and grasping at the latest gossip. It is a poor way to live.
I find a new lipstick color and take a break from Warcraft after a fight with the guild ruins my Saturday.
My team at work all receive iPods for finishing an earlier release.
I lose my job. My dream job. I am not offered relocation, but I do receive three weeks of pay as severance. Jer and I discuss our options, and begin to draw up plans to move.
I reduce cable and cut back in a bunch of places to save money.
Visit my family, my sister is there too. Badly sunburned on my arm while driving. Five months later, you can still see the tan lines.
Jer goes to interviews at the university. Our move plans are put on semi-hold as we wait for the outcome. Except not really, because I start to look at apartments on the web in the Seattle area.
Renew my driver's license, eat dinner with the neighbors.
Start selling my CDs on ebay to raise money.
I have my one-year anniversary at work. My co-workers take me to get a Bento Box at the Japanese restaurant next door. On the same day, a job placement service takes over our office to teach us resume writing skills.
I sell my camera flash on ebay.
Attend a party with my co-workers at someone's home in the hills. It is a beautiful evening and sunset and margarita machine... My high heels sink into the dirt between flagstones and I eat fly-trodden sushi, making small talk. Mosquitoes devour the tops of my feet, biting through my nylons. I am itchy for weeks after.
After creating a timeline complete with milestones, Seattle begins to feel like a real possibility. Jer and I submit resumes to places of business in Seattle, but no luck.
I start to do the legwork, in case we move to Seattle. At first it's more that we're going through the motions without committing, but that changes soon enough. I reserve a moving van, find out who to talk to about obtaining permits to park the van on our street, buy plane tickets for our Hawaii trip, reserve boarding for the cats while we're in Hawaii (the cat boarding place is in Seattle), order moving boxes, and go to a Greek festival.
I continue to sell DVDs and CDs to make money for either the move or imminent unemployment, and polish my resume.
Miss my high school reunion to attend a wedding. In truth, I'm not at all sad to miss the reunion.
Go to fiesta with co-workers and drink too much. Hungover and stupid.
Notify the landlord when we're moving out. Book tickets to fly up to Seattle to find an apartment. Start selling bigger items like book shelves, Jer's desk, cabinets, the big screen tv, and washer/dryer.
I turn 28. I get the permit to park the moving van, there's a big product release, and I make some appointments to see rental units while we're in Seattle for 3 days.
We fly to Seattle, we see about five places, we spend a lot of time being anxious and a lot of time enjoying the in-car navigation system. The last place we see on the last day as a last resort, we decide to rent. The place is perfect and has an incredible view. We sign the papers and pay our deposit and fly back. All in 3 days.
After the product release goes out, there's not much to do at work. I spend most of my time preparing for the move.
We pack and clean. Constantly. There is much moving related stress and anxiety.
Jer's family comes into town to see the dog show. Both of our parents' computers blue screen at the same time in different cities.
Have my tires rotated and aligned and open a bank account for Seattle.
Dear God it is a lot of work to move, that is the theme for September.
More of our big items disappear. We buy equipment for the move, like a dolly, tarps, furniture blankets... Drop off donations, pack up my cubicle at work, set up new renters/auto insurance policy for the new state.
I work my last day. I turn in my laptop and keys.
Attend a going away party for a co-worker (and I guess, technically, myself). Jer can't make it because he is packing but our friends don't believe me and are nasty about his absence. That still makes me angry, because there were something like 8 of them to help 1 guy move his ten boxes into a truck and only 1 of them volunteered to help Jer and I move our gazillion boxes and furniture into the truck. Not that I wanted their help, but I sure as hell didn't want their attitude either.
We give away our bikes and my roller blades. I post "No Parking" signs on the street to reserve a space for the moving van -- a condition of my permit.
We pack the moving van. It is painful and difficult, but we get it done. The permit saves us a ticket from the meter maid on street sweeping day.
The moving van leaves. We have a final walk-through with our landlord, spend three hours on Saturday morning loading our cars with computers and cats, and drive to Redding. Stay overnight and leave the next day for Seattle. Cats never stop crying. My rear turn signal goes out.
We get the keys to our place and sleep on the floor for a week. Rent a U-Haul, drive to ABF, unload, drive back, unload again, exhausted and tired, return the truck and collapse.
The next week, drop the cats off at the boarding place, and leave for Hawaii.
Spend the last week of September, first week of October, in Kauai and Maui.
Hawaii highlights: kayaking down a brackish river, hiking to a waterfall. Red dirt. Snorkeling in the ocean. Shooting sunrises and sunsets, camera lens fogging in the humidity. Rainbows. Polihale, Waimea Canyon, flat tire on the Road to Hana, $10 coconut water at a roadside stand, swimming at Sprecklesville Beach, the Spouting Horn, Haleakala Caldera, koi, sea turtles, Kilauea Point...
Return to Seattle, pick up cats from boarding house, finish unpacking, apply for jobs. Walk along the water, watch television, edit Hawaii photos, and write out my stories. Jer works. I go on one interview, and do a bad phone interview.
Lots of trips to Fry's, Ikea, Best Buy, Target, and Costco. We're in awe of having these stores at our fingertips. I mourn the loss of a local Kohl's.
We meet a friend and his girlfriend for drinks and Thai food. It's the first time it drizzles while we're here... besides when we were unloading the U-Haul truck.
Watch a lot of television. Try to write. Start to slip into a funk.
I send away for free movie passes to see "The Squid and the Whale." I pick Jer up after work and we find the theater in the rain.
I make a calendar with the Hawaii photos. I sell three of them, two to my friend Lily and one to myself. I make $5.90.
I am hired at a company mid-month. In the middle of the interview, there is a fire drill. I take off my high heels so I can run down four flights of stairs.
Jer is unhappy at his new job, but sticks it out. We meet for lunch downtown. I commute by bus.
We buy a new television.
I slowly explore downtown. Cook fried chicken for Thanksgiving.
December 1, it snows. I'd never seen snow fall from the sky before. Christmas shopping on the internet. Lily visits to celebrate her birthday and we eat too much: Salty's, Cheesecake Factory, Claim Jumper and then a trip to see the new Harry Potter.
Jer works a lot of overtime. His company lays off one-third of their employees.
We try the tavern down the street and start eating at the "Shack" by the pier. Excellent burgers and fries.
Office holiday party. I win the grand prize and give it back because I cheated. Attend the after-party where I nearly sing karaoke.
I participate in the giving tree at work and buy a kid some shoes.
Spend Christmas Eve at a co-worker's dinner party.
End of December, massive internet problems leaving us offline too often. A friend from SB visits to celebrate the New Year. I decide on a personal theme for next year. My goal for 2006 is to publish a short story.