Tuesday, December 16, 2014


My bike is occupying it's winter rain spot on the trainer. I'm watching the clouds roll in and the wind blow leaves around the playground behind my building. It'll be raining again soon, and while we need the drought relief, and even though it's only December, I am already over winter.

My beach vacation starts this weekend. The timing is perfect.

I'm watching rents in my potential new apartment spike and then plummet. A one bedroom in that building is now a few dollars cheaper that my current studio. I have a number in mind before I pull the lease-signing trigger.

Living in a state of complete uncertainty is, perhaps unsurprisingly, starting to get me a little down. I don't know where I'll be working or living in a few months. I don't know how I'll meet new friends, or find new bike routes, or go about reshaping a life that I'm about to throw on it's head.

But I am excited for the respite of my vacation, and for the calm before the storm.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

Attitude of Gratitude

It's still pretty dark, but I can see some shadows of blowing trees and the splatter of rain on my windows as I sit at my computer this morning. I'm organizing today - my finances, my travels, and the early stages of what looks to really be a cross-country move.

Gulp. Sob. Sigh.

While visiting Washington, DC last week, I got a really good look at a whole host of comparables to San Francisco - grocery and gas prices (way lower!) rents (also way lower, and with more amenities), transit (not cheaper, but wider reaching and possibly more reliable), apartments that allow dogs (plentiful, beware the coming puppy photos once I get settled), weather. Oh, wait, it snowed while I was there, so that wouldn't necessarily be a good San Francisco comparison.
The more I realize how much sense it makes to leave San Francisco, the more thankful I am for the almost 14 years I've spent here. We've had a great run, this city and I, in all it's foggy, soggy, sun- and rain-drenched glory.

I am so immensely grateful for the opportunity to live here, and for the support of my family when I proclaimed I was hauling my stuff across the country. And if it really is time to go back, it's certainly not for lack of trying. I can't count how many times I've dug my heels in and refused to leave when it would have made sense to go. I have worked really hard to live here, and I'm grateful for that too. But it might be nice to live someplace that doesn't require as much hard work.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Opening the floodgates

I've watched since July as my great job and awesome organization have slipped out of my fingers. I coudn't really talk about it, or write about it, because it hurt my heart. And I couldn't really deal with the fact that all my work - and I'd done a lot there in the past 16 months - was being criticized at every turn.

By the time I left, the constant harassment and really hostile work environment had taken its toll, way more than I realized, or than I let myself believe. I spent the first couple of weeks so overwhelmingly sad about it that I couldn't see much else. And then I looked around and saw the clutter in my apartment. And all the projects I could do. And all the possibilities.

And the floodgates, they opened with a whoosh. All the words are being written. All the work is getting done. My apartment is clean and on its way to being tidy. I can visit with friends and have calm, fun conversations that don't involve my job misery. I can ride my bike when nobody else is on the road. My mind is clear and my heart is healing.

I got my first rejection today from a job I was really excited to interview for. The first round interview went really well, but I won't be advancing. And you know, it's OK. Yes, I really wanted the job, and yes, I'd really like to be working RIGHT NOW, but time is healing. And also productive. And I'll be ready when the right one comes along.

Monday, November 10, 2014


The craigslist gods smiled kindly on me this weekend. As the question circulating in my mind is less about if I will move and more about when, I decided to get an early start on some clearing out, and now some items that have never worked in this apartment are on their way to happy, functional new homes.

No, to answer your logical question, I don't have a job yet. But I am interviewing like crazy and I am hopeful. I'm also lining up some contract work so that I can afford to move when the time comes (and to eat in the interim).

But I no longer panic when I think about leaving. In fact, I'm starting to get excited at the idea of starting over. Or maybe picking up where I left off, since this will be DC 2.0. Now I just need to figure out how I'm going to get myself, my (less than before but still too much) stuff, my car, and two bicycles across the country. Road trip, anyone?

Friday, November 07, 2014

A moment

I strolled down Valencia Street this afternoon, the smell of tortillas wafting out of the taquerias and the faint scent of a recently smoked joint clinging to the breeze. The sun was shining through the little trees and people laughed as they strolled along the sidewalk. I didn't need a sweater over my short sleeves.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

With all the eloquence I haven't been able to muster

I was walking through the Marina last night, strolling from Paxti's (where we had dinner sitting next to Ryan Vogelsong and his family) back to the bus stop. As I waited for the bus I pulled out my phone and scrolled through Twitter, passing the time with the updates of my friends' Friday nights.

This was the first night - Friday or otherwise - that I'd been out with friends in awhile. Most of my inner circle has left the city. The friend I met last night no longer lives here, it was just luck that she was in town. As we said our goodbyes at the bus stop, I tried to bury the pangs of lonliness already creeping up. I miss my friends. I miss easy social time, time together that doesn't involve complicated scheduling and relying on the trips friends take in from out of town.

And then, scrolling through Twitter, I found this. This goodbye letter to San Francisco written by my former classmate. A goodbye letter written by somebody who loves San Francisco the way I do, and who so very eloquently outlined everything that is no longer lovely about living here.

While I've been talking about the same things for the past year or so, I haven't yet been able to put them into intelligible sentences. But my friend did. San Francisco has changed. My friends (and friends-of-friends) are leaving in droves. It's a lonely place to be lately. And maybe it's time for some new adventures of my own.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Not exactly what I'd planned, part II

I got an email on Friday morning with the subject line "Farewell."

I was home, packing for my trip. I don't generally read my work email when I'm away from the office, but with all the recent uncertainty I was keeping an eye on a few things.

A colleague was fired, and four others offered new positions as part of a reorganization. The farewell email came from the fired colleague.

I got no official notice of any changes; no call or email from my boss or HR director. Nothing until I got to work Tuesday morning. And then I was called into a meeting with my boss.

For 20 minutes she explained the changes and their reasoning. Then she alleged that I might be one of the people on staff spreading lies and rumors about her.

I don't lie, or spread rumors. And I won't work with anybody who makes those allegations. And as of Oct. 24, I will no longer be working for this organization.

I have loved this job and my colleagues, and I am very sad to leave.