Monday, October 22, 2007

World's Worst Job Interview

I am a person who gets nervous when I get mail from an address that I don't recognize, yet somehow, the prospect of going on a life-altering job interview doesn't phase me at all. I have never been nervous. I don't worry about them, I just go in there with what I've got, assume its deserving of a high paying salary and then continue on with my day. If I get it, great, if not, oh well. That's always been my amazingly non-Jennyesque attitude on the subject. I'm hoping my experience today doesn't change this---
Being new to Austin, and quite frankly, new to their crazy ass road system, I gave myself an extra half hour to arrive at my interview. How did I end up 40 minutes late? Well, that started a short while after I got on I-35 and realized that exit 250 (State Road 1325) didn't exist. It all went downhill from there. I had to call them twice to tell them I was lost and if it hadn't been for the peppy secretary's "can-do" attitude, I probably would have quit after the thirty minute mark. Needless to say, looking like a grand ol' tard, I made it there 40 minutes late. Naturally everyone assured me that it was no problem and they were so sorry I was lost but I'm pretty sure that deep down they were wondering if I was going to be able to turn on a computer if they hired me.
Visibly shaken by my near two hour Texas excursion, we sat down to begin the actual interview which started with a conversation that pretty much promised that there wasn't the slightest chance in the farthest corner of hell that I would get this job. The lady that interviewed me said: "Well, we've just been so excited to meet you. Denise is one of our favorite gals and she's just certain that you'll be perfect for this position!"

Huh? Who in the crap is Denise?

While I tried to politely say just that, it must have been clear by the look on my face that I had no clue what she was talking about because the lady went on to say:

"Oh... you are Denise Smith's friend, right? You know Denise?"

Me: "Uhhhhh... no. I'm sorry."

Yep, I apologized for not knowing Denise. So from that point on, things continued like any other interview, but I'm pretty sure that Denise's friend is probably the one getting this job. Hopefully she'll show up on time. Best of luck to her. If you need me, I'll be watching daytime television.

Friday, October 12, 2007

The Move Heard 'Round The World

I thought the hardest part about leaving the 150% humidity of Florida behind would be quitting my job and saying good-bye to my friends. I had no idea that the hardest part of leaving Florida would actually be leaving Florida.
We packed and moved everything ourselves. We sold off our furniture to make this move as light and airy as a bag of Reddenbocker's finest. You can imagine our surprise when we filled our 6x12 trailer to the brim. Jammed with boxes of books and movies for the most part, we filled every square inch of the trailer, the back of the truck, the inside of the truck, and the trunk and backseat of my car with crap all with about three cubic inches to spare. We did a less than half assed job of cleaning the apartment, turned in our keys and prepared to hitch up the trailer....

That's when the clouds rolled in as if watching it on a video in fast forward. Thunder clapped and in seconds we were left DRENCHED trying to back the truck up in perfect sync with the hitch in a space the neither really fit in, as quickly as possible. Some sort of colorful swirling oil was leaking out from somewhere mixing with the rain and making us pray to God that it had nothing to do with either of the vehicles we were stuck dealing with. After a good fifteen minutes of time in which I realized I could cross airline guide person off my list of career possibilities, we finally got it hitched up. It should have been a moment of joy and elation, but this thing did NOT look stable. We determined that the thing must be a few THOUSAND pounds over its weight limit and the front end of it and the back end of the truck were sunk low to the ground. We did a test drive around our apartment complex and I shoved the dogs into the passenger seat and we were on our way-- to rush hour on I-4.

The whole experience was extremely nerve racking. I was soaked and freezing and terrified that Mike wouldn't be safe hauling that thing but we made it to our first stop for gas with minimal problems. I fed the dogs and got caught in another surprise mini flood... convinced I was never going to be dry again.

At this stop Mike told me to go on ahead since he felt like he would be fine, but he couldn't accelerate past 55. This was good news for me because people are much less forgiving of a cavalier crawling along without anything attached to it. So I went on ahead and we agreed to meet up at the next stop for gas.

After what felt like an eternity I was out of Florida, through Alabama and almost to the border of Mississippi when I got a terrible call from Mike.

He had stopped for gas and trying to get out of the parking lot he had bottomed out on a slight incline and the trailer had come off. Of course I said I would come back and get him and when I told him I was on the Alabama/Mississippi border, I was shocked to find out that he hadn't even made it out of Florida yet. He was more than an hour behind me.
To make a longer story short, he was able to get the hitch back on himself (thank GOD it was him because I wouldn't have been able to)and set out on the road again agreeing to meet me at the Mississippi welcome center. I sat there for an hour trying to sleep, but sleep didn't come. The only thing welling up in me was the urge to vomit.....

Maybe it was the stress. Maybe it was the continuous flow of caffeine. Maybe it was food poisoning. Either way we decided to stay overnight in some dive Mississippi motel where we each took turns being sick until the wee hours of the morning when we decided, after some deliberation, to continue on to our destination. We weren't the only ones who had it bad, either. There was a ten gallon fish tank strapped into my backseat with traumatized fish displaced from their comfortable 55 gallon home to a cramped little box of splashing water and changing temperatures. They went from the car being off while we were hooking up the hitch and steaming condensation oozing from the glass, to a crisp air conditioned vessel right for two panting dogs, fighting for the best spot on the passenger seat pillow. They were now stuck overnight in the boggy, humid temperature and I couldn't even concentrate on the continued change of temperature, the heat of their water, and the volatile situation within when I had to worry about whether the toilet would flush after I got sick so that Mike would have a fresh start for his throwing up.

Ahhh. That will be one for the ol' memory box.

The rest of the trip went pretty smooth. We made it into Houston pretty quickly and I was really excited. According to my maps and my memory, Houston was a measly three hours from our new digs. ha.

It took us six. I don't know why or how, but it was the longest part of the drive. My only sense of solace was calling Mike and screaming obscenities at him. Amazingly enough, though, we made it here, and we're still married.

Neither of us threw up after that.
None of the fish died.
Most of our crap made it okay.
Both cars seem to still be in working condition... though Mike's truck needs to visit a repair shop.
The dogs still like going for rides in the car.

Austin has been great so far. Its beautiful here and there is so much to do! I loved getting to hang out with my friends after so long.

Its good to be home.

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