Wednesday, February 29, 2012

rolling off

this week is my last week in texas, and today was my third-to-last day on the project. just one and a half measly little days and i'm saying sayonara to the party here in plano - i've been thinking about this day a lot, but now that it's almost here i can hardly believe it.

leaving is always hard. though plano isn't exactly up there on my list of favorite places to be, it has nevertheless somehow managed to wriggle its way into a tiny spot in my heart. the tex-mex, the longhorns, and the seventy-degree sunshine in february will all be missed. my zumba classes, board game wednesdays, and those damn tasty lamb chops at seasons 52 - i will remember you fondly. but what's by far the hardest to let go of is the attachment i've gained to our project and to our client.

for the better part of this past year, my weekdays were more or less devoted to this project. i feel like certain parts of it - functionalities or epics i've honed in on - have essentially become my babies. and the people, my pseudo-family with whom i've laughed, bickered, triumphed, failed, and ultimately shared a roller-coaster of a project experience - they've grown familiar and important and comfortable to me. to pick up my bags and leave with the knowledge that i will in all probability never be back in our team space is a forlorn feeling. will we ever actualize conceptual items? what about validating colors that change channels? i feel like an impatient architect who has blueprinted a building - obsessed and scrutinized it down to every last detail - but who has only seen a tantalizingly tiny fraction of the masterpiece.

but on the flip side of the coin - for every door that closes, another opens. the next door for me will be in chicago for three and a half-ish months. though i have my trepidations and doubts, i also can't deny that to do something else - new location, new lifestyle, new hours, new people - is terribly exciting and reinvigorating. it's the little things i miss and am so looking forward to. i can't wait to spend a quiet tuesday night reading in my own bedroom. or to cook a meal and bring leftovers for lunch the next day. or to bond with my insane cat all over again. 

i'm a big victim of "grass-is-always-greener" syndrome and i'm sure at some point i will get bitten by the travel bug and swept up in another cross-country bravado. but for now, i'm content. quietly sad to be leaving, and quietly happy for what's next.

so i bid you farewell, texas! you've been good to me. yeehaw!

*gallops off into the sunset and towards the freezing cold*

Thursday, February 23, 2012

1337 feet

girly-girl warning in effect!

These are not my feet. These are stock photo people feet.
today during our lunch hour, a friend/co-worker and i skipped the usual routine and went in to get pedicures done instead! we'd originally intended to get our little piggies nice and prepped for mexico this past weekend, but had to book a later date due to scheduling conflicts. (so yea, we went to mexico with nasty hobbitses feet.) well, that later date rolled around to today, and at noon we found ourselves excitedly hopping in the car and driving off towards the spa, debating which toenail polish color we wanted.

this was my first time getting any of my body '-cured' in any way and i was a skeptical, nervous, and excited all at once. we got to sit in massage chairs with our feet in running for the better part of an hour as the nail technicians trimmed, lotioned, and massaged us everywhere from the knee down. i wasn't expecting to enjoy the experience as much as i did - it was thoroughly relaxing and my trepidations about someone touching my feet (uh, ew) quickly faded into comfort and delight (ahhhhhh, i could get used to this). i chose a bright coral-y red color for the toenail colors and have been happily staring at and wiggling my piggies all day, excited for spring and summer and new bright fresh beginnings.

i think it's important to take time and pamper yourself a bit, especially to break up the monotony of a week or to get rid of the dull winter blues (not to mention duller winter skin!). while i definitely don't think i will make a habit out of getting pedicures, i could see myself going back for special occasions. who knew that something as simple as happy feet could make for such a happy girl?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

power grid

"damnit, i'm in first/last place again!"
this evening i played a new board game called power grid with four of my coworkers. well, "played" might be a strong word. i think we spent probably 90% of our time figuring out the game/evaluating decisions/goofing off/stuffing ourselves with thai food and the remaining 10% actually making moves on the board. and we only wound up passing through phase 1 of the game. and took two and a half hours to get there...to an outside observer, we probably looked like we were playing in slooooowwww mootttttioooonnnnnn.

yet despite the mollasses-like pace,  i still highly enjoyed learning to play power grid. let me tell ya - that game is intense. it's reminiscent of a cracked-out hybrid of settlers (get resources!), monopoly (fight over a map for desirable locations!), dominion (buy the most souped-up cards!), and risk (fuck everyone else over!). as such, there is a whole lot of math, planning, and mental optimization that has to go into each turn. the analytical, economically-minded half of my brain got a real treat. i also loved that the more you were winning the game, the more of a handicap you had/vice versa - it really made the game more of a toss-up and it made being in last place actually a viable strategy for victory, something i haven't seen in other games.

there are a couple of drawbacks: it takes a couple of hours to onboard (no pun intended) a first-time player, and a full game even with experienced players can take something like 3 to 4 hours to complete. allegedly.

power grid is a game not for the weak of heart, nor for the short of patience. i loved learning it, although now i want to play for real! i'm not sure when the next time i'll have three hours to spend playing a board game will be. i guess there's always retirement.