Sunday, January 30, 2011

Peace Corps and study?

So one possibility that occurred to me was that of getting another degree while also volunteering with the Peace Corps. Exploring this possibility on the Peace Corps website, I clicked "anthropology" to see what options came up under that.

One option came up.

It's for either environmental anthropology or public health anthropology. So far so good.

Guess which school offers it?

Wazzu. I told myself I would be open to the possibility of going to school anywhere in the world. Pullman, WA, does NOT count! That's not anywhere in the world. It's the middle of nowhere! I can't go from London to Pullman. I'd go stir-crazy!

And how disloyal would I be if I crossed over to the dark side and became a Cougar? Not that I've made a very active or loyal Husky, but still.

Also, I'd have to take the GRE again, which I more or less failed last time.

Flippin' Pullman. It figures.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Need and want

It's amazing what two glasses of wine can do.

Carina invited me over for dinner tonight. I haven't seen her in a month, so it was good to catch up. We watched American Idol and then the new series of Skins. On the tube on the way home, I was too wine-y to read my book, so decided to write down my thoughts. I've been thinking lately that I need a strategy, an action plan.

Pops and Michele were telling me to really think and write about what I want, my goals and stuff. They said to write out a mission statement. I said, "yeah yeah yeah," made a resolution to spend 15 minutes a day writing in my journal about goals and dreams and shit, and then spent the next two weeks saying to myself, "I should really get started on that one of these days..." On the way to work today, I started thinking about what I believe makes me stand apart from other candidates when I apply for a job. As I stepped down from the Central line at Holborn, my answer was "nothing." Of course I'm not getting any interviews. Other people are smarter and more driven than me. They deserve the jobs I'm applying for. I thought about Tim and the fact that when he goes to an interview, he fully believes that he deserves the job he is applying for, and that he is the best candidate they will see. When I go to an interview, I'm just hoping to fool them long enough that they hire me. I chided myself for thinking this way, and by the time I had stepped onto a Picadilly line train, I had started a list of attributes that should make me stand out as a candidate. It's not a very strong list, but it's a start.

So on the way home from Carina's, I was adding more to this list, and reading my book about building schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan, and I had an apostrophe.

I think I should go back to school and get a degree in medical anthropology.

I need to go back to school and get a degree in medical anthropology.

But more than that, I WANT to go back to school a get a degree in medical anthropology. Even with a couple glasses of wine, though, I knew this idea was far-fetched and unrealistic. I'm $60,000 in debt for my first master's degree, which has so far done absolutely nothing for me. I can't go back to school.

But I think I might need to. I want to be a medical anthropologist. That is what I want. I wanted it four years ago but lacked the confidence to say it, or even think it. Yesterday, I wouldn't have said those words. Why does it always take me so long to figure out how much I want something? Why does it take me three or four years to gain the confidence to commit? I've wasted so much time, it makes tears come to my eyes just thinking about it! Twenty-eight years, ten months, 1 day, and $60,000 (not including interest) to come to this conclusion.

Now what? Now I have to find a way to make it happen. It's not a choice. I have a destiny out there somewhere and I can feel it slipping further and further away with each passing day. It is imperative that I fulfill it, before I drive myself insane with longing and an overwhelming feeling of wasted potential.

What sets other people apart from me is their focus and determination. But not anymore.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Visiting the UK Jan: Epping Forest

Tim said last night, "Now, I don't want to nag...but when are you gonna update your blog again?" Well Tim, stick with your gut instinct and don't be a nag! J/K. I love you!

Yesterday was my day to make good on my New Year's resolution of visiting a new place in the UK each month. I kind of failed. The plan was to go to Richmond Park and Kew Gardens. But it costs £14 to get into Kew Gardens and there isn't much there in January. So Aparna and I were just gonna go to Richmond Park instead in the hopes of seeing deer. But I had to bake cookies first and we just got a bit lazy and then decided it made much more sense to go to Epping Forest, which is a 20 minute walk from home. As I haven't been to Epping Forest before, it kind of counts, but not really. It isn't much of a forest anymore, but Henry the something-or-other used to hunt there back in the day. I think it's about half the size of Marymoor Park, and much less forested. Pretty, though! Then we went to IKEA on a whim, as you do. We got a full-length mirror! It's the best thing ever! Now I can see whether I look ridiculous before I get to work. How convenient!

In the evening, it was Tim's friend, Steve's, birthday party. It was fun, mostly because I got to spend the whole evening with Izzi and Tim. I even spent the night at their flat and they gave me BACON this morning! And maple syrup! I like them.

I think I'm going to have to move again, because I will never make enough money at my current job to pay for my current rent, travel card, and food. One of these things must be cut out. Like, NOW. It's stressful. I had Aparna look at my finances with me last week, and ended up on the verge of a panic attack. I'm trying not to think too much about it. Tuesday night is dinner with Tisobel and their friend, Oliver, and Thursday is dinner with Carina, so I will look forward to those things and try not to stress. Breathing deeply...

Sunday, January 09, 2011

Latest whim

I haven't blogged in a while because I'm frustrated with life (work, money, London) and I'm sick of always blogging when I'm cranky.

Work is stressing me out. I asked for a raise for a second time, and again my manager came up with BS excuses why I wasn't good enough to warrant a raise, while also giving me even more responsibility and work to do. I've started having stressful dreams about work. Twenty-nine years of learning to be conscientious and hard-working and respect authority, undone by ten months working in this job. I now know that if I work hard and do a good job, I'll get taken advantage of. So it's time to stop working hard. It's time to care less.

In my Christmas stocking (Christmas with the Coley's was wonderful, by the way!), Tim's mom gave me a lavender sachet. I've taken to sniffing it lately to release stress. I took a long sniff of it this morning and was transported back to San Juan Island in May, 2004. Memories of playing at the lavender farm with my sisters, and of almost dying trying to follow my dad up a steep hill on my bike. Forget London. That's where I want to be right now. So I got to thinking, "I wonder what Jersey is like?" I pulled out my list of places to go in England before my visa runs out and added the Channel Islands to it. But why stop there? I'm frustrated with my job and have no other job prospects. Izzi and Tim might be leaving London soon for Tim's work. Why not work in the Channel Islands for a summer season? So this is my latest whim. To spend the summer working in a resort or something on a nice, warmer-than-London island.