I had such a good visit with my aunt and uncle, it really was a blessing to see them. The only things I really wanted to do while there was visit my father’s grave and go to The Dodge House’s gift shop… and maybe wander through their little mall they have there. The rest of it, I just let my aunt set the schedule — it’s what she’s good at. Visiting them is kind of like going to camp, they set the schedule and it’s best for all involved if I just go along with it.
Because of the blizzard that went through there and dumped 12″ of snow the day before I arrived, it was impossible to find my father’s grave — something I hadn’t even thought about. So, we drove through the cemetery and waved in the general direction of where we thought it might be, and that was the best we could do.
The gift shop at The Dodge House was having a 20% off sale, so that was a success. You know how I love sales.
On Monday, we had another weather day, so we canceled our lunch plans and stayed in. I asked if we could go through family photo albums, it seemed like a good cold weather thing to do. There were some really sweet moments, between sharing stories, thoughts and history behind the photos, I’d look up to see my aunt looking at me, observing me, as if she were searching for something. She would smile at me and I realized that she was seeing my father in me. She misses him. He shouldn’t have died so young.
The little boy in this picture is my dad, being held by his stepsister. Look at the car and the building in the background, interesting, eh?
Many of the pictures that she had of my childhood, or of family members who are now gone, were taken in her home. The thought fascinated me that her home really hasn’t changed so much throughout the years. Maybe the couch and chairs have been replaced, but they’ve been stationed in the same spot as their predecessor, giving the air of timelessness. I wouldn’t be surprised if even their phone number is the same as it was 40 years ago. But the people who come and go have aged and many have died. The pictures gave the misconception that if I walked out into the living room, I might really find my grandma sitting upon the couch by the Christmas tree.
In the chair, me and my brother. Somehow, I don’t think we’d fit in that chair together anymore, even if we wanted to.
I didn’t want to leave, but it is good to be home.
I followed up on an interview I’d had last week. I really wanted this particular job, they’re a really good company and have a great corporate culture. When I called, the HR person’s line went to voicemail, so I hung up and called the CFO, who I’d interviewed with. I learned a long time ago that following the rules (talking to the HR person) is usually unproductive. The CFO took my call, and I was sad to learn that they had chosen another person for the job. I told him I was disappointed, because I had felt that I had hit it off with him and everyone I had interviewed with. He validated my words, and then shared that they had made their decision based on budget (of course), but that I had made their decision really, really difficult, because they had really liked me… a lot.
He asked me if he could call me in the future if things didn’t work out with the person they hired. I told him I would be pleased to hear from him, because as a candidate, *I* don’t always base my decision on money, but I take into account corporate stability and personalities of the people for whom I work. I may find a job that pays me what I want, but if I’m not happy or the company goes under, then what do I have?
On a smaller scale, we have the misdelivered stamps-by-mail order issue that was finally resolved after several emails and phone calls and a trip to my post office. They gave my stamps to someone other than me, that person kept them, and it was looking as if I was going to have to dispute the charge with my credit card company. But yesterday the post office agreed to re-ship the order, so I’m grateful for that.
Tony restocked his little fish tank with neon tetras and guppies, for awhile there was one lonely tetra in there. Poor little thing, all its tankmates died around him. We ended up with a bonus fish, a little ghost shrimp (I don’t know what it’s really called), that the girl at the pet store accidentally caught and put in the bag and rather than try to get him back out gave up and gave him to us for free.
As luck would have it, the ghost guy is out right now, so you get to see him. He’s facing the left of the picture…
The only experience I’ve had with ghost shrimp was when I was helping my friend move his fish store last year. One of my assignments was to catch and move as many ghost shrimps as I could find in their tank. It was a near impossible feat, because those little buggers are transparent and move fast! Anyway, we’ve been more fascinated with our free tank addition than the other ones. Of course, last night I noticed that two of the tetras have ick, so I started them on a course of ick medication. The one has it pretty bad, I hope he makes it through the weekend.
This weekend we’re off to the mountains, mostly to relax before the holiday craziness begins. We’re hoping we’ll see a little bit of residual snow from the storm that moved through last week. Compared to where I just was, I’m sure it’ll look like child’s play to me.
My mom arrives from South Korea on Monday for her first stateside Christmas in we-can’t-remember-when… and then the fun will begin!