Friday, May 27, 2005

Where does time go?

The title sounds like a bad joke, but it is actually a serious question. So much to blog about, so little time.

I got the pictures developed from Hawaii (MKD and I are not in the “digital” age and have to care about things like film speed and number of exposures). It is hard to believe that I was physically there and now I am here. We got a lot of great shots of the scenery and of my extended family. It reminds me that I need to keep in better touch with them even though they are thousands of miles away. The hardest part was seeing my grandmother on my mom’s side, who is in a small nursing home for dementia. She remembered me briefly and cried. She will be 92 soon, and has lost the will to walk on her own or feed herself. No one ever thinks they will be spoon-feeding an adult like an infant. When it does happen, it shakes you up and makes you cognizant of how precious life and your health is. In comparison, my grandfather on my dad’s side is going to be 99 this year. He is doing well and still has my grandmother (age 90) to care for him. My father wants to bring the whole family out to Hawaii next year for my grandfather’s 100th birthday, but all the relatives say he is not going to make it and that it is “any day now.” In comparison to some of the people I saw at the nursing home, my grandfather is spry and healthy for his age.

In other news…I came out to my parents last Monday. They were the last people in my life to know because they were the hardest to tell (anyone with knowledge of Asian parenting and culture can get my drift). To my surprise, it went extremely well. I couldn’t have asked for a better scenario. It turns out that they have known for a long time and were fine with it! In fact, they are supportive of my lifestyle and me since it is conducive to my happiness. Plus, they love MKD and feel like she is another one of their daughters! They told me they have always tried to make her feel comfortable and welcome in the family. Their only concern was that I have to deal with closed-minded bigots in the world. The experience was so surreal and completely shocking. I thought I would “knock their socks off,” but instead they knocked off mine. All this time, I thought my parents had been taking denial to a whole new level (they know MKD and I sleep in the same bed and never said a thing), but it turns out that they were waiting for me to come around when I was ready. Then they were there to receive me with open arms. I am very lucky to have supportive parents and I feel a lot closer to them now. Plus, a gigantic burden has been lifted from me after carrying it around for a great deal of my life. Looking back, I should have mustered up the courage sooner, but fear is a powerful, debilitating thing.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

I need a vacation from my vacation

My schedule is still way off. I made the mistake of falling asleep when I got home from work yesterday, which is why it took me until 3 a.m. to fall asleep later that night. Along with my messed up sleeping hours, I also need to get my digestive system back on track. I had developed some sort of dysentery the last couple of days during our trip (my gf had the opposite problem) and consumed massive amounts of stomach aiding products. Now, I think my stomach is rebounding and producing more acid than usual, thus making me feel abnormal still. Need to find that balance.

On a lighter note, I did promise to blog about the events from my trip to Hawaii. As stated before, the journey was long and arduous, but we were rewarded for it when we went to pick up the rental car and got upgraded to a convertible. Even though we had a car, we didn’t get to do as many touristy things as we would have liked to. We did get to go to the Honolulu Zoo, which has more birds than any other animal. So if you’re a bird lover, this zoo is definitely the place to hit and be sure to check out the bird sanctuary. Other than the zoo, we did some shopping and found most of the things our friends and family back home requested. Instead of lugging back all our loot, we mailed a large box to ourselves. So if you are waiting for your booty, it is coming by the end of this week.

We did hit a decent amount of beaches. We would walk across the street to get to Waikiki and did that quite frequently to watch the sunset and musical entertainers. We drove out to the east shore of Oahu and found Waimanalo beach, which was extremely calm and not crowded. Since neither of us are strong swimmers, we avoided the beaches with surfable waves and stuck with the beaches that are more like expansive swimming pools. Another great beach we went to was Lanikai. It was hard to find, but definitely worth it. But our favorite beach area was Hanauma Bay, where we rented snorkels and swam with the tropical fish on the large coral reef. I love how blue and clear the water is there. I hate going to the beaches here on the east coast mainland because the water is brown and murky.

The food was wonderful and I forgot how much I missed it. We had lau lau and poi at my grandparents’ house, and lots of sushi (which my gf is more into even though I am the Asian one) other nights. But the best was when we stopped at a local shack on the side of the road with the menu hand-painted on the building. We had a lunch plate with shredded kahlua pig, rice, and macaroni salad, with strawberry shave ice for dessert. People in Hawaii love their food, give generous portions, and eat a lot. It’s a good thing MKD and I don’t live in Hawaii or we would be 400 pounds.

The rest of the time was spent with my extended family (another blog to come). Since MKD and I didn’t get to do a lot of things that we wanted to due to lack of time and/or energy, it helps us plan our next trip there, that is, if I can get her back on another plane.

Wednesday, May 18, 2005

The reason for my hiatus was…

I was in Hawaii! Pretty damn good excuse if you ask me. I resisted the urge to go online and check my email and blog while I was there even though there were computer kiosks all over the place. Now, I am getting acclimated to being home and sitting in front of the computer all day instead of being on a beach.

The trip was great. The only crap thing was the long ass plane ride out there. We went from here to Cincinnati, which was about an hour and a half. Then from Cincinnati to Honolulu, which was nine and a half hours. My gf and I hated being on a plane that long, but we somehow endured it. After the third movie, you begin to go out of your skull some.

I got to see a lot of extended family that I haven’t seen in eight years (I was born there but moved to MD when I was two). It was strange to see how much older people looked and how much has changed. I also got to meet my cousin’s son for the first time. He is super adorable and a hyper 4-year old.

It was great taking a vacation, but it is nice being home. I have a lot more to say about our trip, good stories and sad ones, but they will have to be disclosed later in the week. I have work to catch up on and entropy to fix. At least I didn’t have to get on a plane the next day to Atlanta for a 10-day business trip like MKD. My poor gf...she is not going to want to ride another plane for a long time and will be missed terribly. At least she only got a mild sunburn/sun poisoning in HI. White people and a tropical island are not a good combination. We tried to protect her sensitive "17th century chic" skin with SPF 48 applied every hour, but the sun’s rays prevailed.

Ugh...jet lag. Hawaii is six hours behind us. Getting my schedule and internal clock back on track should be fun.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

Personal Comparisons

I don’t know which is more pathetic: The fact that the only thing hanging on my office wall is a giant correlation matrix, or the fact that I enjoyed making it.

Dorkdom established. Now onto other work foo…

There’s a good chance that I will be taking an online course and other workshops to learn more crap about complicated statistics for work. Not because I am inept, but because I am not a statistician and they are trying to make me into one, yet not pay me the corresponding salary. Bastards. The good news is that the company will pay for it. The bad news is that I will have extra work.

My gf told me when I started working here to not be too efficient and to not work too hard. Once you establish competency and a high standard, people crap all over you and take advantage of your work ethic and capabilities. I really should have listened to her. It is sad how things operate in businesses and corporations. Therefore for my sanity, I bitch.

Recently, someone in my company got demoted in which they gave her fewer responsibilities. They did not change her title or lower her salary or benefits. All they did was move her office closer to the big boss. So what does that tell the other employees? Let’s see…if we slack off, we will get our office moved, have little to no responsibilities, and get paid the same for whatever title we hold. Tempting…

but no. Stupid conscience.
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