Time to travel
Well, it’s that time of year again. For about the next six weeks, I’ll be criss-crossing the lower half of the country. Here’s my itinerary for the next 10 days:
- Tomorrow, I leave for Jacksonville at noon
- Thursday, I’ll wake up and spend the day visiting my family, first at Dad’s place, then at Grandma’s
- Friday afternoon, I’ll head down to Gainesville to see a couple basketball games, hopefully the FSU football game and just bum around for a few days
- Tuesday afternoon, I head back to Jacksonville to board a plane to L.A.
- Tuesday night through Friday afternoon, I’m in El Segundo for work
- Finally, I head back to Dallas on Friday night (December 2)
I’m looking forward to the next couple weeks, but I know it’s going to be exhausting. Then, I only have a couple weeks before I head home for Christmas.
I’m pretty much done packing, so I think it’s time to get some sleep.
Heading home for Thanksgiving
I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to make it home this year because of the high plane ticket prices, but things have worked out just in time. I was able to get my return ticket paid for by my company, so that means I only have to buy a one-way ticket to Jacksonville, which I got for a reasonable price. Basically, I’ve arranged for a training session in El Segundo the week after Thanksgiving. I’ll fly to J-ville on Wednesday, the 23rd, hang with the family for a couple days, go to Gainesville on Friday or Saturday and hopefully get a ticket to the FSU game. Then I’ll continue hanging in G-ville for a few days and I fly to El Segundo on Tuesday afternoon. I’ll be in El Segundo until Friday afternoon, then I finally head back to Dallas to return to the grind.
Christmas travel plans
Tentatively, I’m leaving Dallas around December 15 and driving east. A friend of mine might be accompanying me so we can hit Shreveport on the way and maybe go to a casino or two. If he joins me, the plan is that he’ll fly out to Dallas (one-way) and then ride with me back east. After Shreveport, we’ll go to Atlanta (where he lives) and hang for a few days before parting ways to go spend Christmas with our respective families. Of course, there’s a 10-day gap between when I’ll leave Dallas and Christmas day, so I’ll have to see about visiting G-ville and maybe going to a Gator basketball game during that week.
After Christmas, I’ll probably head north to Atlanta to hang with all the locals I know and also to see all the Crusade Staffers that will be there for Christmas Conference. Last year, a friend of mine threw a pretty sweet New Year’s party, so hopefully she’ll do that again.
I’ll head back to Dallas around January 2nd and prepare to begin another year of boring work.
El Segundo on hold for a bit
Well, we had a meeting at work today wherein it became obvious that I should hold off on going to CA for training. Basically, it’s just not a good time for me to leave my responsibilities here and it’s an even worse time to try and get people to spend one-on-one time training me out there. We’re gonna’ try it again in a couple weeks.
Actually enjoying work?
I’m actually enjoying one of the projects I’ve been working on. I never expected to hate or really dislike work, but I also never expected to enjoy it. This work thing is turnin’ out to be all right. Don’t get me wrong, I still don’t think I’ll be an engineer “long term”, but I’m content with this profession for now. I work for a good company, on a good program and with good people; I don’t think there are too many other things I could ask for.
My computer desk arrived today… it was in two large boxes and weighs 300 pounds. It’s a good sized desk, but it’s smaller than one would think, given its weight. I’m kinda’ enjoying buying decent furniture rather than the cheap, “made for college kids” stuff I bought back at school. I have to say I’m not particularly enjoying assembling it, but I guess that’s just part of the deal. I hope to have it all done by Saturday when my couch and loveseat will finally arrive.
Tomorrow night will be my first official guys’ night since I’ve arrived in Texas. Two of my friends–the two guys I roomed with on Project and then co-opped with the following summer–and I are going to watch the Georgia Tech vs. Maryland game and get a bite to eat or something. It should be a good time and I’m looking forward to going out and hangin’ with the boys.
Headed to El Segundo
It looks like I’ll be spending next week in El Segundo. I’m pretty excited about it because I should get some time to go into L.A. and have a look around. Also, I get a pretty good deal regarding a per diem and accommodations and all that.
What I’m not looking forward to is being without a computer and internet access. My weblog will probably be on hold and I’ll spend a lot of time watching TV and reading at night. I guess I can’t have it all, but it sure would be nice anyway.
The program I work on splits its responsibilities between two locations: here in Dallas and out in El Segundo, CA. We often send people back and forth for different reasons like troubleshooting, fixing broken stuff, consulting on various problems and planning strategies for the future of the program. For the past couple days, a guy from El Segundo has been helpin’ us out here in Dallas and I spent a lot of time working with him trying to solve problems and such.
Yesterday, during lunch, I asked him about the L.A. area–what it’s like living there, how accessible L.A. is to outsiders, the cost of living, etc.–and I eventually told him a little about how I’m hoping to get into acting in the future. I told him that my ideal situation would be to transfer to El Segundo and keep my job as a part-timer so that I could train and try to get work as an actor. Turns out he knows a guy that is trying to break into acting, mostly doing extra work, but also shooting some commercials and such. Anyway, my co-worker said he would put me in touch with his friend if I wanted, so that I would have a contact out there and could discuss the business with him and whatnot.
I was really surprised how easy it was to meet someone on the “inside” and I’m glad to have a contact like this one. Hopefully, after I’ve completed the two-year program I’m looking at here in Dallas, I’ll be able to call on this contact to help decide if I want to make the transition to L.A. I never thought I’d get a good contact for acting while working as an engineer, but I guess that’s why they invented the word “surprise”.
Today seemed particularly long. I think part of the problem was that I was pretty tired most of the day. The rest of the problem was probably that I wasn’t too busy today and when I ain’t busy, I start gettin’ bored. Anyway, the good news is it looks like I’m going to have some more training added to my list. As it stands, I’m going to El Segundo, CA for two weeks in one-week shifts; but now I might be adding a week in Austin. Of course, all trips are on the company’s dime and that means I’ll be workin’ during the day and seein’ the sights at night (El Segundo is right outside L.A. and Austin is just a cool town).
More responsibility at work
I’m not sure what’ll come of it all, but I’m getting more and more stuff put on my plate. More responsibility means more opportunities to be noticed and impress my superiors. Before I began working, I decided I was gonna’ go all out. I figure if I’m going to be cooped up in an Office Space set clone for 40 hours a week, I might as well make the most of it. Of course, part of my inspiration is that my annual raise is based on a performance review and the performance review is done by my supervisor who could be pretty impressed if I do good work. Yeah, I’m basically in it for the Benjamins.
I’m seriously considering buying a digital camera, but I just can’t bring myself to shell out all the dough right now. I feel it would be useful for me to record this transition (ASIDE: I know I’ve been harping on “this transition” a lot lately, but since “this transition” is about all I have going on right now, I’m going to continue harping: END ASIDE). I dunno’… maybe I’ll get one, maybe I won’t. Problem is, I’d want to get pics of my apartment as it is right now, so that makes my decision sort of time-sensitive. I mean, if I don’t get pictures of it before my furniture gets here, then I won’t have an opportunity to record the disaster that is my home right now.
I’m trying to bump bedtime up a few minutes a night and that means I gotta’ head to bed now.
Plano: Day 9
I reported for orientation on Monday, then went to meet my boss and get my assignment on Tuesday, then went in today and got a new and different assignment. I think this one will stick. I think this assignment will be challenging and allow me to show my superiors what I can do. Also, I’ll be traveling out to El Segundo, CA (right outside L.A.) for a couple weeks of training (probably two one-week sessions). I am glad I’ll have something challenging and interesting to do.
Furniture Fiasco Finale
I think I’m done buying furniture for a while. I bought a dining set (table and four chairs) at Ashley Furniture tonight. So, I’ve bought everything I planned on buying before I came out here: Sofa/loveseat, coffee table, two end tables, dining room set and TV stand. I still need a couple lamps to put on the end tables, but I don’t really consider those furniture. In retrospect, it would’ve been wise to begin furniture shopping before I left Gainesville. Two of the three stores I bought from have a three- to four-week lead-time on delivering my furniture. Obviously, if I’d done my shopping and ordered the furniture before I left Gainesville, I would’ve had it by now. Of course that’s not totally realistic since I’d never seen my apartment before I moved in and it would’ve been difficult to buy furniture for a place I’d never seen or been in.
I also bought a Nintendo GameCube today. I’ve been wanting one for a while and I figured I’d splurge in the interest of keeping myself occupied in the apartment. It didn’t come with a game, so I thought I’d start with Tony Hawk: Pro Skater 3. It’s pretty fun and, even more fun, it was only 15 bucks.
When I actually get in bed, I sleep just fine; but I’m having trouble getting tired enough to get in bed, lately. I have to be up at about 7, but I can’t seem to get into bed before midnight. I don’t know what my deal is, but I know I’m gettin’ sick of bein’ so tired every morning at work. Hopefully, I’ll get into a routine or something pretty soon.