September 20, 2011

My favorite past time.

I should be posting about my first week at my new job, but I am more interested in posting very overdue pictures of my Eurotrip! Yayyyy!

Click on the images for a single picture view! (you really should)

September 6, 2011

Facebook Envy

If you have experienced post-grad life in the age of Facebook, then you know how "Facebook Envy" feels. Now, this term sounds pretty preposterous, and even I, a Facebook addict, scoffed at the idea. And then Fall Semester at the University of Redlands began.

I miss college!! Event updates for annual first of the year parties; pictures of travelers abroad in Salzy, Milan, and Paris; youngin's moving in to the Brockton Block for the first time, invitations to sports events... the list goes on, and on, and on, and.... yeah. At this time last year, I was about to begin the best semester of my life at Redlands, followed by the worst. At the end of my last semester, I never believed I would miss that dear old U of R, but, I do. And that gets me to wondering, maybe this Facebook Envy fad really has some relevancy. Would I be feeling this envious of my returning student friends if I wasn't being updated on their every fabulous move? Is Facebook really causing people to fall into depression over the demise of their once exciting, relatively carefree lives? Is the college afterlife looking more and more dismal to those who don't have their fabulous adult selves in order, all because of Facebook? So many questions, so little people willing to cut off ties with the devil's site in order to find out.

And here I go, down memory lane.

Ok, so the last one isn't from Redlands, but hey, we can all wish, right?

And the search begins.


Since returning from my whirlwind journey through Europe, I have been battling post-travel depression, a serious case of jet lag, and the ever-looming reality check that my adult life has now officially begun. My first week home really shouldn't count as moments lived in reality, though. More like, a haze of exhaustion (and on that first Tuesday, alcohol, due to a friend's 21st birthday celebration at my local watering hole). My recovery period kept my worries of being jobless and seemingly without experience in most major career titles at bay. Isn't it nice how I seem to always find myself an excuse to prolong the inevitable? Welcome to the life of an anxious procrastinator.

And the search begins.

I have had a seasonal job in my hometown for the past six years. This job is somewhat comical in the sense that some (including myself) might call me a "carny". I am the kettle corn queen of Sonoma County. Two good family friends, and great businessman might I add, hired me as one of their kettle corn vendors back when I was in high school. Now, this job pays ridiculously well for how easy it is, and the pay is under the table. Plus, I get to munch on kettle corn whenever I want. Blessing and a curse, that one. I actually enjoy the work very much. Who is angry or rude when they are buying something so delicious? So, I have always gone back to this job when I can, and have created great report with my bosses. G is one of those bosses. He is a bar and nightclub owner as well as a Kettle Corn and Snow Cone extraordinaire. Since I enjoy working for him so much, I decided that I would ask him how he felt about me applying for a job at his nightclub, Chrome Lotus. He was open to the idea and offered me a spot as a cocktail waitress, and a bonus Kettle Corn gig my first weekend back from vacation. I was obviously not feeling one hundred percent, but I needed some cash, so I worked for him that weekend at a Seafood Festival in the nearby town of Bodega. After some consideration over the cocktailing job, I decided that my already wavering lack of patience for drunk people would not be of help to me, so I declined G's offer graciously.

I was feeling pretty beat this week as well due to lingering jet lag. Who knew it could be such a pain in the ass?? I used that lack of energy as an excuse to sit on my booty and occasionally search for jobs on craigslist. Results? Not really. But I wasn't trying very hard. My cushy couch under a free-of-rent roof wasn't signaling any fight or flight responses in the unemployed section of my brain. I had one more connection that had been trying to help me out all summer, my old softball coach. He was a master of the networking world, and he always had something up his sleeve for one of his ex-players. I think I was putting contacting him off because I knew he would have a very adult, very "worky" job for me. His networking consists mostly of sales, marketing, and other such ventures. I have never pictured myself in an office setting. I even felt confined in the cities we visited in Europe sometimes because there wasn't enough nature around. I know this quirk isn't very helpful in trying to get by in the "real world", but I decided a long time ago that I would never settle for a career that just payed my bills. I need something that will spark my creativity and passion and lust for life.

WAKE UP. Yes, I know I can't live out my dream career just yet. I realized what I needed to do earlier this week, and gave in to calling my coach. We finally got in contact tonight. And just like that, I have a job. It is not much in the line of pay, and that's just fine. The experience is crucial, and the work sounds interesting enough to keep me going and motivated. And it is in the best city in the world, San Francisco! :)

I have finally begun my journey through the reality phase of my college afterlife. Now I just have to prepare myself for my first homecoming as an alumni (Redlands Homecoming is a whooole 'nother story).

August 6, 2011

How it feels to be on the other side.

Barcelona was out of this world. The alleyways in the Gothic district where we stayed never seemed to end. There were countless businesses and restaurants, as well as many locked up storefronts due to owners on holiday. Our street was a mostly pedestrian walkway with a few scattered mopeds and rental bikes. And the view from our modest Air BnB-rented place was beautiful. The first night in Barcelona was an interesting experience to say the least. Due to an Ambien induced airplane coma earlier in the day, I woke up at 3 AM Barcelona time and could not fall back to sleep. So I sat on the ledge of our window and stared down onto our street. It was almost eerily silent. For a place so lively and boisterous only hours before, the stillness of the late night was undisturbed by even the slightest movement or noise. I sat there for nearly an hour without experiencing a single soul's presence. It was a nice time to ponder the upcoming adventures I was about to embark upon. Peaceful, calming, even though anticipation of exhaustion for the day to come was causing a lingering anxious feeling somewhere in the back of my mind. That night was the first time I sat down and wrote a short piece of fiction in over 7 years. It felt liberating to reexplore my somewhat stifled imagination. It's only been four days since we touched down in Europe, and I already feel like the creative juices that once used to flow so smoothly and effervescently through my soul are returning to their maximum potential.

Thank you Gaudi, thank you Kitty Olympics, thank you history, thank you point and shoot cameras, thank you Catalan, and most of all thank you Sangria. Mmmmm.

By the way how awesome is it that I had two friends in Barcelona at the same time? I ran into one by chance, and met up with the other. So fun to see some familiar faces in a land where EVERYone knew I wasn't a familiar face! (Am I really that pale??)

We are finally checked in to our apartment in Paris, and the set part about this place is that we have a free show directly below us. Ladies of the oldest profession, all day every day, at your service. Meeeeow.

July 31, 2011

Going To The MothaLand!

I am leaving on a jet plane, tomorrow morning. I know when I will be back again, but who knows if I will actually fulfill that destiny. Maybe I will stay in Europe and never begin my college afterlife?

All I know is, I am so thankful to have so many great friends that have already studied/traveled abroad to give me awesome tips and fun adventures for our trip. Can't wait to see/eat/drink it all in. See you all when I see you all. <3

July 30, 2011

My Big Girl Goals

So, this is only my third blog, and I started this adventure almost two months ago. Ruh-Roh. I need to get on top of my bloggin' game if anyone is going to take me seriously and finally give me my own Tila Tequila-inspired reality dating show...

I feel like I haven't graduated into the real world yet. And that is because I really haven't. This summer has been a vacation from facing the "Big Girl World" ahead of me. House sitting in Portland, OR for a month? Yes please! And what and adventure that was. I just got home yesterday from a whirlwind month of microbrews, waterfall hiking, food carts and of course the elusive (not) hipster. Thanks to my brother and fellow blogger at Drug Youth, Chris, and some college friends that lived in the area, I have officially ducked out of any Big Girl responsibilities thus far in my adventure through the college afterlife. And the fun doesn't stop there. I am leaving for a three week vacation galavanting through Europe in one. Day. When am I ever going to accomplish any of my Big Girl Goals??

Big Girl Goals:

Drink alcohol once a week
           (I drank good beer in Portland for what seems like two weeks straight, helloooo beer belly)

Fix my sailor mouth
          (My $43,000/year tuition needs to be expressed through my vocabulary, not my many variables of Fornication Under Consent of the King...)
Never wear sweats out in public
         (yoga pants do not count IF going to yoga/working out)

Go to bed at a "Big Girl Bedtime"
        (for those of you who don't know, college/college partying can really set your sleep clock on crazy mode)

Find a job!!!
        -This last one is obviously the most important. And this is the hardest to accomplish, especially with all of this traveling. How am I supposed to interview for a job when I am thousands of miles away eating cheese and drinking wine with some French man with a handle bar mustache? Not to say I am not thrilled with my life right now, I am blessed to have the opportunities in front of me. But, I want a job. Oh, hey recession.

I guess I haven't really graduated yet. Europe is the final stage in entering in to the College Afterlife.

June 16, 2011

So, What Are You Gonna Do With Your Life?

Which way should I go? With that one guy who directs movies just so he can say racist things to filipinos? Or the dashing young gentleman with the ginger beard?

Well, this decision is just one of the many obstacles I must face in the real world. But, the first obstacle us graduates (or almost graduates in this case) seem to always face is the dreaded question, "So what are you gonna do next?" There are of course many variations of this question, such as, "Do you have a job lined up?", "What is your next move?", "Are you gonna sell yourself on the corner to pay off your student loans?", etc. Our younger friends ask us, our extended family asks us, our professors ask us, and even those oblivious graduating peers ask us on occasion. We are bombarded on all sides with this anxiety provoking poke and prod, sometimes multiple times within a social gathering. And, it is exhausting to answer, to say the least. 

As the weeks turned to days before my graduation, the questions of future plans began to blend together into one big, ugly gremlin jumping up and down on my chest. I might have an idea of what I want to do, but I do not in any sense have a set plan. A lot of graduates do have their next step set in stone, but a lot of us still don't. For those of us who chose to play it by ear, those questions can sometimes make us feel like slackers, a bit unsuccessful, or just a big lame. I can say with confidence that it weighed on me a little, but I never let that question dictate my feelings towards graduating. I had a rough go at it in college, and there was no way that some Nosey Nancies were going to get in the way of that feeling of pure joy as I walked across the stage.

So, my first obstacle in this new adventure I call the college afterlife, was round-house kicked to the face with joy. Not only joy, though, pride, excitement, and a kind of ecstasy that one can only feel after holding in a breath for a little too long, while punching a unicorn in the face (relief + doing the impossible). Erin -1, Afterlife- 0.

June 13, 2011

What The Hell Am I Doing?

Uhhhh... ya! Of course Tila is my online celebrity idol. This blog is my destiny. The only goal I have for my life after college is to become an online celebrity train-wreck with my own bi-sexual "reality" show on VH1... either that or I am getting casted for the Bad Girls Club. (Oh hey Psychology BA hanging on my wall...)

But really, what the HELL am I doing? I mean, I have always enjoyed my writing, but I think that might be because I can read my sarcasm well through text. Well of course, I wrote it. But, I do enjoy throwing my sarcasm-challenged friends for a loop every now and then, so let's get this train-wreck, uh I mean adventure, started.