Friday, February 5, 2016

Moved...again

Hello world,


Once again, I've moved...to London this time. First time living in another country. To be very British about it: it's really quite strange actually. (It's like the entire English accent is half adverbs and the other half adverbs that modify adverbs, really.)

I have a job, finishing up the first week today. I feel so American. I'm experiencing a very small version of what it must be like to be an immigrant. My bank account is laughable. I can't get a credit card. Getting a mobile phone took weeks. But, honestly, all of that is sidelined by the fact that I miss home. My family is 7 hours away. When I'm free, they are at work. When they are free, I'm asleep. I can't text friends throughout the day. I can't call my family on a regular phone. I have to use spotty apps that drop the call every 3 minutes. I feel so disconnected. Luckily, boyfriend is here with me. He's been working so late and studying for a big exam that most of the time I actually feel bad trying to chat. All and all, I won't lie and say I like how things are going so far. I bought a stuffed animal the other day, or should I say 'soft toy'. It's an elephant that I named Hufflepuff, or Huffy for short. It has heart-shaped ears and a tail made of small, black rope. Apparently minor depression shoots me right back to 1992. AND turns me from a mighty Gryffindor to a patient Hufflepuff...
Well, could be worse I guess. To continue click below...



Work has been a real challenge also. I don't know what is normal in the UK and what is just my firm, but no one seems to be training me. Yes, I know how to do my job (the way we do it in the United States). Yes, I know how to edit documents (the way we do it in the United States). And yes, I know how to challenge people on such documents (the way we do it in the United States). But, wait, what is normal here? Someone? Anyone? It seems my colleagues (a) have a lot of faith in their new American coworker, (b) are simply too busy to train, or (c) are too [insert stereotype] to speak in guidance-based declarative sentences. Regardless, it appears the only way to learn anything is to do it wrong and wait for someone to correct you. Inefficient much? You should have seen the office chuckles when we finally came to the conclusion that a 'period' and 'fullstop' share meaning. And 'c.' is 'approx.'. 'Brackets' are 'parenthesis'. You have to give Britain props on this one because 'brackets' is certainly easier to spell. It's funny in hindsight, but after a while, being confused all the time makes you feel a bit stupid. I mean, you think English is English. Would you understand someone who says 'diarize' (without speedy help from Google)? I will be really relieved when I feel acclimated...at least to the point where I can fully understand when people are speaking. To speed up the process, I'm going to start reading books in British English and re-watch all my British movies. They, quite cleverly, only leave in the obvious British slang in Hollywood movies though (thanks, America, for Americanizing everything), so I'll have to hunt for films with British financing.

The biggest challenge so far (by far) is accepting that I'm earning half what I made in New York and living in a place that costs more with a goal to travel as much as possible (which I can no longer really afford to do). I don't think my lifestyle has to change too drastically because I've always been a saver and cutting out things like Starbucks, buying clothes, and the occasional splurge I normally indulge in should do the trick. During travel I'll have to learn to be more frugal but people do that all the time. The really difficult part of it is that I'm turning 30 this year. It's the same old story of comparison being the thief of joy. It's just hard not to compare when you see so many other people your age coming into amazing things in their careers, getting manager/director/executive promotions, getting to travel for work, buying homes, buying second homes or rentals, finishing second Master's degrees...it's all a bit much for my humble "after 10 years of professional work experience, I finally found something I like to do but I just took a huge pay-cut".

But then, I hear of a friend's parents' cancer turning terminal and I instantly snap out of it. What am I babbling about again? Regardless of how things feel each minute of the day, I'm still here doing things that challenge me. So there's that.

I have so many things to catch you up on - New Orleans, Halloween, moving, Italy, Brussels, ballet, Harry Potter Studio Tour....life is crazy. For now, dear blog, I'll leave you with an adorbs pup photo and be on my way.


xo,