Thursday, 6 August 2009

Summer 2009: A 3/4 Retrospective

Part of the continuing reflection on summer flying by, I realized that this summer has been pretty fab.

I worked my first real grown-up job. Although it was a little scary at first, it has turned out to be a fabulous experience. In terms of my individual work, I practised my writing, especially writing concisely (a four panel public education brochure is short!) and I got very good at picking out key messages from long documents I’m speed reading. Can you say “term papers”?

In addition to all the practical skills, I learned about working with a team and how to work in an office. This is most definitely something that took time to learn. The ability to sit and work for eight hours a day was hard enough at the beginning. The whole working-in-an-office skill was not one I anticipated going into this job.

I lazed around. Sure, it was slightly less relaxing than I would have liked, what with the coming right after oral surgery and the gargling and spitting and pain, however, I still loved lying quietly in bed, the sun on my face, dozing and reading and listening to Iron and Wine. The Percocet was an added bonus.

I saw friends. After my awful Christmas break (I’m going to blame the mono), I was determined not to repeat a hermit-like existence. I have seen a lot of my girlfriends, even an out-of-town reunion, and we keep in close touch. Davis and I are emails at work buddies (an important part of 9-5 working). I have seen the most of Sarah, mostly because she lives close and enjoys using my for my Tivo recordings of So You Think You Can Dance (finale tonight! Go Janine!).

I traveled. Quite the opposite of my original plan for a quiet, boring summer, I ended up traveling to both coasts of the continent, one of them for the first time, as well as the middle (Minnesota wedding). I fell in love with the mountains.

I found myself a man. Well, I didn’t so much find a man as I fell for my best friend. Luckily, he did the same thing (phew… imagine how awkward that could have been). He was the main reason for my Halifax trip (concurrent reason: to give myself a reason to endure May and June). We’ve been skyping and snail-mailing all summer, which has been perfectly lovely and suitably romantic/adorable.

I blogged. After an abysmal posting record in March and April, caused mostly by my preoccupation with the man mentioned above, I got back to blogging, which is something I really enjoy. I met other bloggers and I Blogged Out Loud. I started writing a new blog for A Real Magazine, which made me feel like A Real Writer.

I got a lot of reading done. This one should not be underestimated. After a year of having zero time to read for fun, I rediscovered the pleasure of a good book. I’ve been like a kid in a candy store at the library. Actually, probably more like me, as a kid, in the library. I’ve read some good books. I recommend especially The Hours, by Michael Cunningham. What a beautiful, thoroughly enjoyable read. I also read a book that’s supposed to be a kid’s book, but kept me glued to the page. It’s called Lyonesse and, full disclosure, it’s written by a family friend. It’s a King Arthur myth-style story about the Isles of Scilly in England. The author is from Scilly, and his author’s note is particularly interesting. In any case, I recommend it, and not just because of the family connection. Probably more because of my King Arthur myth fetish.

I hope all of you have loved your summer so far as much as I have loved mine. And the best part is that there are still three more weeks of it left, which will include a lot of packing, eating my favourite foods before returning to res, and a trip to New Brunswick to visit a certain boy. Yes, a boy who snail mails. I didn’t know they existed outside the 1940s.

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