Mood: Waiting to Chill Out
The last couple of weeks have been consumed by work and way too much play, and I can’t wait to kick back and relax for a bit.
Not that I’m complaining – I love the fact that I’m busy and have things to do. My bones are just tired is all.
Work has been good – we have been busy on a big project and I’m pleased to say I’m settling in well with the project. Besides earning my keep as a project manager, I have also been playing team coordinator to my division in a "as a last resort" capacity. It was frustrating at first – considering how hard I had worked to move forward in my career (done my stint in admin, want to do more in project management) – but I have finally learned to balance the two. And until such time as we find a permanent replacement (who will do the work willingly and happily as opposed to sitting at the desk and organise their wedding/family/life at the top of their voice all day long), I’m ok with taking on a little bit more responsibilities.
In all honesty, I’m good at that job – the admin stuff. I can do that job with my eyes closed and hands tied behind my back and mouth duct taped. It’s not rocket science, and that was the main reason I strove to become a project manager. Without meaning to sound all arrogant and uppity, I need a bigger challenge than what an admin role can offer to me. If I was married with children and had to work to supplement my husband’s income, then I would happily work in admin for the rest of my life. Truth remains that I’m single, footloose and fancy free, and I need the intellectual stimulation that a challenging job brings.
Anyway, it’s been kind of nice to multi-task. And it is also lovely that my general manager has been very kind with recognising my little bit of "over and above" contribution.
The party season has well and truly started. Not only are the drinks more frequent, they seem to be flowing more freely. Last week was a good case in point.
It all started with the Melbourne Cup luncheon. My company put on a spread for everyone to enjoy the race in style, and there were plenty of beers, wines and food to go around. The race itself was not run until 3pm, but the luncheon kicked off at around 1.30pm, so you can imagine how happy the party crowd was by the time the race began. For the sensible ones, they went back to work. But there is always a small group – the life of the party – who remain and charge on. And I was part of that group.
By 5pm, I was in no state to see straight, let alone read emails and reply with any form of coherence. So when it was announced that most of the party group was heading across the road to the "offsite meeting room", aka the pub, I obediently followed.
I really should have gone home after a couple more drinks, but for some reason, I found myself staying for another, and then another. And I even thought it was a great idea to join the group for a few more drinks in the city a few hours later.
Let’s just say that I got home close to 1am after a 12-hour bender and the party in my belly wasn’t happy about letting rum through the door.
Wednesday was a write-off for most people – we were physically in the office but not many of us were doing much work until after an egg & filthy swine roll and/or a greasy lunch. I was in bed and asleep by 8.30pm (after a couple of beers to soothe the throat and clear the nose).
Thursday was the theme party that my colleagues in the "penthouse" (aka top floor of the building) were throwing as their "housewarming party" after a minor relocation. Drinks, food, more drinks, and to finish off the night, I found myself on my usual perch on the balcony belonging to my work mate S, drinking more wine and smoking a tonne of cigarettes. In recent weeks, S and I have made Thursday night our night to catch up and this week was not to be any different. I found myself sitting in a taxi heading home with a belly full of Evans & Tate Classic Dry White at close to 1am.
Friday was terrible – my alcohol fuelled week was catching up to me, and I had forgotten I had booked myself and 2 other team members into a training session that afternoon. With much work to complete in preparation for a big project meeting on Monday, I was in no mood to work. It wasn’t helped by the fact that when I arrived on Friday morning, I witnessed a secret squirrel meeting that involved my manager’s office door opening and closing a large number of times. In my experience, these meetings signify either someone asking to leave the company or someone being asked to leave. Either way, it appeared that neither my manager nor the person he was meeting with were happy.
By 4pm, I was well and truly over the week – my health kick had been flung out the window and my body was tired from the restless nights of sleep. So it seemed like a good idea to accept a glass of wine that was being proffered by my team members.
A full bottle of Oyster Bay Sav Blanc later and I took myself home to a bag of microwave popcorn.
I had a lovely weekend planned for last weekend – movies and dinner with Danie on Saturday, and a completely chilled out Sunday of laundry, Sunday papers and DVDs. I must admit I felt extremely flat on Saturday morning when I woke to a text message at 7.30am from some guy I met on Tuesday night.
Luckily for me, my day would vastly improve. My date with Danie was great. We saw Hairspray (which I thoroughly loved!) and then took our time to walk from Broadway to Darling Harbour for cocktails and dinner at the Blackbird Café, chatting all the way. Hilariously, we noticed 2 G-strings on the glass roof of the restaurant below us – in aquamarine and black. Discrete enquiry followed and we were informed the G-strings were once part of a rowdy Bucks Night. A very full and yummy meal (including dessert – a rarity for me!) and 2 delicious cocktails later, we felt the need to stroll around Darling Harbour to work off some of the food.
We happened upon the Yann Arthus-Bertrand Earth From Above photographic exhibition. 120 photographs featuring landscapes and people from an aerial perspective are on display along the fountains in Darling Harbour and we wandered at leisure looking at all the amazing photos. Free to the public, I didn’t know the display had been there since June (and will be there until Boxing Day this year), and both Danie and I enjoyed looking at all the pictures and reading the facts that accompanied the photos.
My Sunday included an additional activity – yum cha with my friends Clayton and Mollie. I love seeing Clay, who lives and works in Scone and is an infrequent visitor to Sydney. Clay’s last visit was only a few weeks ago, so it was a lovely surprise to get a call from him on Friday night, asking if I was free to catch up for lunch on Sunday.
After battling Chatswood’s horrendous Sunday morning traffic, I found Clay and Mollie (Clay’s younger sister) waiting for me outside the restaurant. I hadn’t seen Mollie in a few months, and the 3 of us chatted animatedly away through baskets of steamed goodness. Lunch was over way too quickly, and while Clay and Mollie went off to the movies, I shopped for groceries before heading home to continue my weekend.
This week has been hectic so far. The work team grew by one (newbie started yesterday morning – nice fella – looks and sounds smart – looking forward to working with him) and then very quickly shrank again when my general manager announced the resignation of a Sydney-based team member. To be honest, the announcement was neither unexpected nor surprising. A few of us had seen something brewing for a while and it was becoming all too clear that the departing team member was not playing well with others. Hence the secret squirrel meeting on Friday last week. In the end, it was best for everyone that she and the company parted ways.
A big project meeting yesterday has yielded a fair bit more work for me today, but the very toasty conditions of the office were not conducive to productivity. The air conditioning units failed today and the whole building was under sweltering conditions. It was cooler outside than in – and today wasn’t a cold day. By 4pm, all staff had just about had enough and emergency portable cooling units were rented and delivered. By the look of things, we can expect to live with the loud cooling units for at least a week.
And after the 4 beers last night, I think I’ll lay off the booze tonight for a change.
Life is going well, even though it feels like I’m stuck in the fast lane at times. I just want Christmas to come so I can lay down for a few days!