It's been such a long time since I last posted. My blog is having an identity crisis. My new job has keep wonderful, but its sometimes occupying my mind on my off time and keeping me awake at night. The old heartburn flares up, and an occasional set of lovely hives on my neck when I get upset about someone's social injustice. My new job is meaningful, stimulating, challenging - everything I wished for when we were living a nice peaceful life in Japan. So, be careful what you wish for!
Basically, I work at a small hospital on a certain small island with a major base on it, which I'll call Shmarp. They are into a certain model of care which involves basically the same building with some minor coats of paint, but added details of some alternative therapies like massage, acupuncture and aromatherapy for the patients. It is very common for a troubled patient to get a bit of lavender lotion or a few soaked cotton balls in the corner of his room. Volunteers bake cookies on each unit, once a week, and the smell wafts through the rooms. It is the spirit of the care. People seem kind, and caring, and dedicated.
I come from experience with several other systems, several trends (google the Disney Model gag and the Eden Alternative Model they tried at a certain hospital for about five minutes, made us all sit through corporate babble and show signs of total buy-in, then abandoned the plan after five minutes). I've been through several sets of layoffs and phases of low census, and I've cultivated a careful, respectfully cynical attitude toward the hospital corporation in general. I will not be impressed by any package of 403 B and pet insurance I can purchase at some discount, or cheaper movie tickets. Yep, I've seen everyone's cafeterias and they are all just ok. Corporate casual and small tasteful stud earrings. Blaaaaah! But yet, I find myself really liking it there.
But it does interfere with my knitting time, and time with my doggies. Oh, yeah, and those kids.
For Thanksgiving we are joining another family that were our very dear neighbors in Ikego, then moved to San Diego several months before us and now are living a couple of miles away. Then, another family jumped into the plans and now it is going to be even more fun. Matthew and Yuri are doing the turkey and a pumpkin cheesecake. I have some cranberry sauce in the fridge that I made last night and a sweet potato casserole guaranteed to clog your last artery. My Gott, the butter. Today I'm going to whip up some stuffing from a mix and doctor it up with celery, onion and some toasted nuts. Then, whip up some potatoes with butter and salt and lots of half and half. Oh, and some fresh green beans. I think someone is bring a salad that no one will eat.
Oh, lord. Does anyone out there in cyberspace have any experience with people in San Diego being in general obsessed with their looks, what kind of house the live in, what neighborhood they live in, and stuff stuff stuff?? Man.
Some people are obsessed with how they look. People here are inundated with images and ads for plastic surgery. There are certain hot neighborhoods that no one can really afford, yet everyone must live in anyway. Shampoo costs more than the whole outfit - no - ensemble - I found at the thrift shop. Maybe it is an American thing and what this is is culture shock. I'd really like to move to an isolated rural area and raise sheep and sell the wool, possible in Minnesota. I'd drive a rusty old truck and really let myself go. I'd let the gray come it where it wants and just go ahead and sag where they will. We'd raise our own veggies and make our own clothes.
Things to be very very thankful for:
*the family, friends, pups, the gorgeous weather, the mountains, trees
*the way the cranberries look when they are sparkling with water after being rinsed
*Jose and the boys
*the way the Rug Doctor filled up with very dark water from the carpet last weekend, and now we can enjoy the new sense of clean
*the smell of beeswax candles
*they way Miss Peach sheds in little soft tufts, you can tug at one and it comes out in one piece. She lets me do it. Is is weird that I enjoy this?
*the look and feel of a certain silk-wool worsted velvety grape hand dyed yarn from Uruguay feels whilst making a little pressie for my sister in law. Pure heaven!
*the way that being forced by our stupid Homeowners Association to hire someone to work on our front yard has enabled us to meet a very nice family business. And adorable old Dad, who speaks mostly Spanish, wished me a happy Thanks-holiday
*the boys and I having persisted in the idea that one doesn't need to match their socks on a weekend day, which has simplified our lives tremendously
Well, I'm going to go surf the net now. Cause that's how I roll.