Here are a few thoughts I collected during my first week in my new/old hometown. I find myself being somewhat repetitive about how nice it is, so I guess that must mean it's true, right??
Here you go, written sort of in a journal style as the sections were written on different days.
Monday, first day at the new place! I got to my apartment about 1 a.m. Sleeping was a little hard, being in a new place, especially as close to the railroad tracks as this temporary apartment is. But it was fairly easy getting up, and I really enjoyed my block-long walk to work. I learned that the employee entrance is on the side of the building closest to my apartment, so I don't have to walk around to the opposite side.
Still much to learn, but I can tell that the procedures will make sense once I get more familiar with it.
Tomorrow night I will cover a meeting for someone else who is overloaded. It will be fun. It's a public hearing on allocation of water resources. (The kind of geeky things I get into.)
I walked downtown for lunch, a block in the opposite direction from my apartment. It was cool and I was able to do some window shopping. I get an hour for lunch but I was so involved in the desk-cleaning that I didn't get away right on time and lost about 15 minutes of my time. But that is OK, because I really didn't take even 45 minutes.
Tomorrow I will have to try to run some errands -- set up a bank account, get deposits on utilities, etc.
Next Tuesday evening we'll have a company picnic at the shelter out at the park near the lake. The company is providing all the food. Everyone is so nice, I think this will be a good place to work.
Tuesday. Last night was so relaxing. After I finished work, I walked to the library to try to get a library card, but didn't have any proof of my new address. I thought I had my lease at the apartment, so I thought I'd be able to find it and go back to get my card.
On the way, I stopped at a new restaurant (to me, and apparently fairly new in town.) I had the most incredible wrap and decided this is going to become "my" place. They have a cyber cafe set up but not working -- they aren't sure they're going to keep the computers. But they do have wireless so I can hang out there with my laptop, when I bring it up. Nice people too, and they have live music on Friday and Saturday. It's a five-minute walk to my place.
So I went home after I ate, changed clothes, looked for the lease and gave up. Went back to the library, and they had me put my address on a post card. When it gets to me I can take that back as proof of my address and get my library card.
While I was there I found a cozy alcove, right where I used to sit on the floor during the summers when I was in grade school, reading books. It was so comfy I dozed off and dropped the book. I figured that was a sign to go home.
I stopped at the same restaurant to try some of their ice cream. It was incredible. I got cinnamon and I'm afraid I may be hooked.
Life is good!
Wednesday. It's pretty darn wonderful so far, I have to admit. I feel sorta cosmopolitan, what with the living and working downtown and the new restaurants that are down here too. I've only been in my car once since Sunday, and that was to go to Wal-Mart. There's just something cool and reminiscent about being able to walk everywhere I want to go. Can't wait to get my library card so I can have more internet access outside of work. I feel uncomfortable doing anything online that's not work related, but no one has told me not to.
I am enjoying not having a land-line phone, microwave, TV or computer. I'm finding I like the trade-off. A lot. Slow food, slow pace, less stress. Less noisy intrusions into my life.
I also enjoy the work I'm doing so far, covering local government. Not so enjoying typing the honor roll lists and that kind of thing, but hope to get some education stories going that have some substance other than being a clip to mail to grandma.
I am at the library (where I am currently typing). On Monday, since I couldn't get my library card, I searched for the Jan Karon books and found "At Home in Mitford." I've wanted to read the Mitford series after serious encouragement from an aunt, a cousin and a couple of dear friends.
I was so overwhelmed by nostalgia and all the walking that I dozed off and dropped my book. I had to rush back here today after I got my address verification card for two reasons: 1, to play on the computer without fear of being watched; and 2, to check out the book! I have many Mitfordish scenes running through my head in these past few days that I wish I had my laptop so I could write!
I was disappointed this morning when I woke up and realized I didn't hear the train last night. Since I've been here, I've stirred as the train goes through at 3 a.m., just three blocks west of me. It sounds like it really barrels through town at that hour, instead of the slow, rocking train passing through during the day. It's still rather comforting, imagining that there's someone on that train just making a quick pass through town to make sure everything is OK while the residents sleep. I always drop right back off to sleep after they make their run. But I missed hearing it this morning and I don't know if they didn't make the run or if I slept through it.
Thursday. They won't let us drink anything at our desks if it's not in a particular closed-lid mug. They gave me a mug yesterday to make it official.
I've spent a good deal of time doing some cleaning. I've had to clean off a dozen waste-paper cans' worth of junk off my desk and out of my filing cabinets. It's all been piling up since at least 1993, which was the date on the files at the bottom of the piles. The dust bunnies have been horrible. There are still some messy places behind the desk, between the desk and the computer table on the side. I'll have to wear slacks one day so I can get down there and dig out the junk.
I do get a lot of comments and weird looks when I clean. They may think I have an obsessive need to clean, but they just caught a mouse in a closet behind a co-worker yesterday. I don't want to feel one running across my toes!! Plus everyone is coughing and sneezing -- I'm not. I think it's because I've killed the allergens that are around me. You should have seen the dust buffaloes I corralled! HUGE!
I can't think of anything to add. Photos probably will have to come after my next trip to OKC so I can collect my laptop and photo card reader. I feel like someone lopped off one hand and crippled me without the computer. It's a poor substitute trying to find places where I can steal a little computer time. Not yet as comfortable as my old set-up at my old house.
Friday. All I had to do today was write meeting notices for the Board of Commissioners and the School Board. Both have meetings on Monday night, at the same time, to vote on their budgets for the coming fiscal year. Great. I'm supposed to cover both. I talked to the Managing Editor and we came up with a plan for me to start at the Board of Commissioners' meeting and the run over to the school board. This time I think I'll take a car. The last thing I had to do today was go over and pick up the packet that covers everything on the agenda for the B of C meeting.
Saturday. Road trip! Back to OKC today to do some more packing, organizing, cleaning and other prep for selling my house. I have to find my apartment lease, too. I can't believe it has vanished in just a week. I also have to find my social security card, which I fear is in one of two lock boxes for which I cannot find the keys. I also bundled up my laundry to take with me to wash.
Uh-oh. I got here and realized said bundled laundry is still sitting in the apartment! Good thing I left some clothes here. I'll have to find someplace to wash clothes Sunday evening. I hope the laundromats don't close too early or I'll be in some mess.
Sunday: Posting my thoughts here. Yep, I wound up napping and wasting most of the day yesterday. Well, wasting is too harsh a word. I did get some essential things done: Banking, for one. And I went to the farmers market which is about a mile from my house here. I've never made it over there in all of the 11 years I've lived in this house. So now I drive 100 miles plus a little to go. Hey, I needed some handmade soap and a candle so I can take the smell of "old" out of my apartment.
Must get up and get going now. If I'm not going to go to church this weekend, I better have something productive and essential to show for my absence. For a while, I'm going to be just a little lax about church attendance. I'm also going to do some visiting to several churches before settling into a new church home. It's been too many years since I've looked at other churches. I think it's something that we should routinely do, so we can find what other people are doing right, in welcoming, missions, mutual support ... and so many other areas. We have much to learn from one another about how to do these things.
There are some boxes in there waiting for me to come put them together and put stuff in them. Pray for me!