Monday, January 23, 2012

Don't know what you got

People often say things like "You don't know what you got 'til its gone".

Inversely, you don't know what you're missing until you experience it.
Since I began working at NECSI, I've held down a second, weekend job at Zinnia.  In the long history of second jobs, I'm confident Zinnia is a very good one.  I'm friendly-friends with the rest of the workers, the customers are for the most part pleasant, and the discount is an added perk.

However, clearly this puts a strain on my time off.  I'd been doing Friday nights and "eitherSaturdayorSunday" since October 2010, making Fridays 11-13 hours long and giving me one day off per week (sometimes none because of volunteer responsibilities).  A girl can get exhausted before she knows it.
This past December, I told the lovely manager at Zinnia that if she needed to cut hours in January (aka the slowest sales month known to humankind), she could cut mine.  So this past weekend was my first 'real' weekend in a long, long time.  And friends, it was glorious.  Thank you, labor unions, for creating the modern weekend.  To have Saturday AND Sunday AND Friday evening off?  It was a little piece of heaven.  The weekend before I worked Sunday, but had the MLK Jr. holiday off the next day, so in truth I had TWO 2-day weekends in a row.

Big deal, Clare, you say.  Lots of people have that.  Well, friends, it had been longer than I care to admit.  So long that it reminded me of what loveliness it was to hang out with my fiance and do nothing all day - grocery shop, wander, read and draw (I read, he drew).  
Now, I don't like to complain about my lot in life.  There are people holding down 2+ jobs who are much worse off than I am.  The economy is not great, to say the least, and people are struggling.  I am grateful for the jobs I have.

But I was also very grateful for the break.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

The snow, it is snowing

I know a lot of people have some choice words to say about snow.

After all, it can cancel travel and social plans, down power lines, cause accidents, and is a pain in the butt to shovel.
In the city, snow can go from 0 to ugly in a few hours, as soon as the fresh powder stops falling.

Me?  I don't care.  Not even a little bit.  I am a city dweller, and I love snow.
There is nothing like the calm that fills the city in a snowstorm.  Everything is quiet.  Everything is peaceful.  The ugliness of a stark winter is covered by a fluffy white blanket.

We renters have a pretty sweet deal when it comes to snow.  For the most part, we don't need to shovel.  The landlord takes care of that.  And while owning a car may  have a whole heap of benefits, when you don't own one, guess what?  You don't have to shovel it out, and you don't have to find a lawn chair, traffic cone, or barrel to save your parking spot.
In fact, the snow is perfect for the walkers.  We're slowed down a little bit, which makes us enjoy the weather, makes us really breath in the air and the freshness snow brings.

Its Saturday.  B and I are both home, a weekend rarity.  Relaxed music plays.  Until recently, I sat in the window drinking tea and reading the latest VF.  B is drawing.  We're cozy in a way one can only be on a cold winter's day.