Monday, April 24, 2006

Vamos a bailar!

I went tonight with some friends from work to another great show put on by the Spin Doctor, my good DJ friend and co-worker. He brought to our small town the wonderful Francisco Aguabella Band and they were fantastic. They are a Cuban group straight out of the Buena Vista Social Club Cuban music. They were fantastico! We danced and laughed and enjoyed this fabulous treat. Until after most of the crowd had gone, all the wierdos came out. The Chicana beauty danced with one man and then stated that he scared her as he was a little too forward and directive in the dancing. We had another wierdo who said he was hoping to induct us in his gang the crypts. This from the most boring looking white boy you can immagine! Of course we did not believe him, but it just adds to the annals of the wierd dudes that P'tit attracks when she goes out! Chicana completely agrees with that statement as we have gone dancing many time and found lots of strange guys in our little town.

We had a blast, and the place was packed. I wish my phone camera took anything that actually looks like a picture!

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

J'ai le vague a l'ame

Litterally: I have a vagueness in my soul or something like that. An expression I feel captures my current emotional state. Work is working me. Not so much the regular stuff, but just all of the changes that are happening.

It starts with my continually getting raises. I know, I am nuts to complain about that or to experience undue stress from it. I now feel so much part of the establishment, and for an old hippy, that is a tragedy! But also, from the raise comes more expectation. It has not been overtly stated, and may be my own hang up, but I feel I will have to perform more to earn that raise, not so much that I have been doing lots and deserve it. (Catholic hang up maybe?) I know my boss does appreciate what I have done and continues to do for the agency, and about a year ago, my title was changed from coordinator to supervisor which carried some additional tasks, but not overly. But now, my direct supervisor is moving on from supervising my program to other duties and I will be more in charge, although he is still involved. Part of it is that the lines are not very clear, maybe that is what is draging me down.

Other things that add to the situation is that we do have lots of new folks directly in my "unit." All of these folks bring new styles and needs and ideas and conflicts too. I mourn our old little protected group that was so tight knit. We are now so divided and some folks are not very open and foment behind closed doors. Others want german like structure, which I cannot supply and which horrifies me anyway. My style of leadership is very non-hierarchal and open. I do not want to have harshly regulated meeting when no one can speak their mind. And at the same time, I don't understand why those who dissent cannot just say so during the meeting rather than feeling like they must do so after the fact.

The other part is that I think of my supervisor, who, as far as I know, leads an immensely isolated life, comprised mostly of his work, and little social life. This is the guy that is basically always on-call. He goes on vacation and we can still call him with queries, and some co-workers have done that. That is not the life I want for myself. That is why the raise makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up. I fear it for the hidden and implied costs to me, to my personal life, to my independence, to my friendships.

I would welcome any comments. Mystic, what is your crystal ball (metaphorical as it may be) telling you? I just feel alone because the person I would normally talk to is part of the target of some other's dissent, so I can't bring my concerns to her. Pffft! (Sound of P'tit sticking her tongue out at the world!)

Pretty picture:

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Sonho Meu, Vai Buscar Quem Mora Longe!

It has been a long time since my last post. Now as I write this, I feel like when I went to confession as a child! Not that writing on my blog is that intimidating.

It has been raining non-stop here in the central coast of california for the last three weeks. We are all molding! Fortunately, today was sunny and bright and it was a delight to see the waves with white crests over the deep blue of the ocean, a great change from the unending gray that has been envelopping everything. The seas have been raging the last few weeks and I include some pics of the spectacles we were treated to recently. The waves have been huge (note the tiny speck that is a surfer) and crash beautifully on the breakwater. I just could not get any spectacular pictures as everything was gray, including the crashing waves!

Last week-end, the Kid and I went to Northern Carolina to visit Duke University. She has been accepted at their program for a Master of Environmental Management. The program seems great, some of the teacher fantastic, and the other students very impressive and bright. We hung out with some of the young folks who were all prospective students and it seemed like a good fit for her. There are so many options she can select in the program that it can be molded to her specific wish. She is a little worried about the funding and moving across country, and I suggested she speak to Spin who has experienced this first hand. The campus was great and there are tons of trees and wooded areas, and the climate is fairly mild, although not as much as here. (They get a couple of inches of snow a year.) Although it was nice and warm for the week-end. So she is pretty convinced that she will go there. The other options would be to go to UCSB where she has done her undergrad work and that could be less interesting to prospective employers to see someone who just sticks to one school.
View of the main lawn, very beautiful.

Finally, for my friend in the Czech republic, who like me is a bunny lover, here are some alternative to live easter bunny to entertain the children.