Thursday, July 26, 2012
I start on Monday working for one of my old clients from my consulting business. I'm working for a mid-size ($38 million) HVAC company, which is in the industrial environment that I really like. I've known many of these guys for a number of years, and at least one of them for most of my life. This is not going to be an easy job, especially since it will require me staying at a hotel several nights a week, but I think it is going to be a good one with just the right kinds of challenges and activities that satisfy my cravings for challenging work.
The thing I like most about it, however, is the ties that it has with my in-progress research. The research I am currently focusing on has to do with "identity" creation and meaning-making in the workplace, but particularly in industrial workplaces. I am hoping to analyze data from the TWL workforce in Papua New Guinea as an example of an extremely diverse, but still not multi-national, workforce. But the things that I am reading in my research efforts, the things that are on my mind as I go through the day now, are all things that are useful to this new work environment as well. Synergies in work, study, personal interest and work history? What could be better than that?
Although I was hoping for another overseas assignment, Leo and I both think that this job is a better "fit" for me and what I have going on. But the biggest plus of all is the fact that I will get to spend time at home and with friends, family, and especially Leo, every week. If you guess from all of this chatter that I'm really excited about this, you're right. I can't WAIT to get started down this new path!
Monday, July 23, 2012
I've done some work for Rebecca (Amaya Consulting stuff for ExxonMobil) but am trying to leave her in charge of all of that while I look for something more, well, steady. I'm heading to Houston tomorrow to visit an old friend and perhaps even talk about a job. I'm trying not to get too excited about it all, but there's a chance that working full-time for this company may be something I am ready for now. I guess we'll know more later this week.
As far as the dissertation goes, I've [finally!] begun investigating something that might be both interesting and doable. There are a lot of hurdles to cross first, but at least I've got a good start on it all. Thankfully, I have 3 really good friends that keep in touch weekly and won't let me fall down on this. We cry on each other's shoulders, laugh, celebrate, growl, pout, but always support each other. I'm thinking it is the main thing that is going to get me through this process and all the way to the end. I'm trailing behind the others, of course, who will all have their PhDs long before I am ready, but, thankfully, they don't mind me tagging along!
The swimming pool decision has hit snag after snag, primarily the fact that the pool we want and the bids to put it in are still a long way away from each other budget-wise. I've had to give pretty much everything up to Leo to handle as I don't have the time, nor the mind, for those details right now. Thank goodness he knows what he's doing! He's such a life-saver on this one and I am fully counting on him to come up with a solution for us soon.
We have friends coming for a visit from Australia in early August and are so looking forward to them being here with us for a bit. We were introduced to a "proper English Christmas" at their house last year and are going to return the favor by showing them how we live in the country in Texas. As you can see our plates are full right now, but it's all good.
Thursday, July 19, 2012
Gosh, I loved my time in Papua New Guinea. Almost 3 years of it, and I was very comfortable there. But now that the job has come to an end and I am back home, I am slowly getting re-acclimated to life in a developed country. I miss my friends, the work, and the beauty of PNG, but I'm also happy to be home again.
My sleep patterns are not quite back on target yet, but are definitely getting better. I was asleep before midnight last night and up at 8am, so I'm getting there. I've counted this two weeks as my "vacation" time, although Becca and I have worked on some projects together and made some good progress, but Monday I'll start back with more of a "work" routine and schedule daily time for both paid work and dissertation work.
I hope I'll be better at posting here on my blog again, now that I am home. I got in the habit of using Facebook as it is so much easier to post snippets of information there. But, there are a lot of people who don't use FB, and a lot who just don't like it, and I'm always worried about what I post there as it is such a public space. This space is more my own, so I feel much more comfortable sharing things here with people who are wanting to know about me and my life.
For my "summer vacation" I've scheduled a couple of events for Leo and I to attend. The first of these is coming up on Saturday night and I am VERY excited about going. I bought 4 tickets to see Joe Cocker in concert and Leo and I will be taking my sister Ginger, and nephew Tyler, with us. Can't wait! I'm providing a link to one of his songs here, just in case you don't know who he is. Enjoy!
Wednesday, June 09, 2010
Monday, June 07, 2010
Although I don't use this blog any more, after Leo and Jess reported problems with being redirected to other sites, I do keep it up for those folks that check in now and then. If you want to see my most recent blog postings, go to My PNG Life blog and check it out. I just posted photos of my new apartment there, in case you are interested.
Thursday, March 04, 2010
I moved into my new apartment two days ago. Although it too is expensive, I like it SO much better than living in the hotel! I have some room to spread out here, I hear birds in the morning rather than sounds of construction, and I can cook and do laundry (well...theoretically anyway). I can't wait to get back to it and get settled in for the next 7 weeks of activities.
Hmmm...what shall I tell first...the good, or the bad.
Let's start with the bad. It is hot. I mean HOT. I mean REALLY HOT. There is a small window unit in my bedroom, but the air it puts out is not really cool at all. (I will DEFINITELY take a look at the filter when I get back and see if there is something I can do to help it along.) There are fans in the living area and bedroom, but really what they do is blow hot air around all day. Note: When a friend stopped by around dinner time yesterday I begged him to take me out to eat just so I could enjoy the air conditioning in his vehicle for a few minutes! Thankfully, he was happy to oblige.
Now I'm thinking there are probably two main groups of you out there reading this; those that can't imagine living without a/c, and those that think I am being awfully picky about it. The truth is, Leo and the girls and I lived without a/c (yes...in south Texas!) for most of our time in Port Lavaca. I actually do relatively well without it. There are three things that have an impact on the situation though. First, my computer equipment generates heat of its own and is not used to the hot conditions. Second, whenever someone stops by for a visit, I am always drenched in sweat. Third, the apartment is large enough to double as an office, providing some much-needed ad hoc meeting space for business working sessions. However, the more people gathered, the hotter it is.
Only a few other drawbacks make the list.
- There is no hot water. "Why do you need hot water in all this heat?" my friend asks.
- I have a refrigerator/freezer that slightly cools my food, nothing more.
- The doors don't latch and don't seal, so I have flying insects in the house regularly.
- I have no internet connection. This is a problem I MUST resolve, but is turning out to be much more of a problem, with a lot fewer solutions, than I expected.
Now comes the good!
I can have friends come over and visit! My first friends came the night that I moved in. Not only did they come for a visit, they came bearing gifts. (Sorry...I didn't take pictures of them yet, but I will soon and post them as well.) I'm embarrassed to say I wasn't prepared for them, but I will be next time. I can't wait to have more friends over to visit.
I can cook! Although I had a problem with this at first, one of my friends was able to get the propane going so I could get the stove to work and cook up a little something. This is going to help me out tremendously on money, time, and health. The refrigerator problem means I'll have to shop more often than I am used to, but at least I can cook and eat at home.
I live in a neighborhood! I didn't know how much I missed hearing roosters crow in the mornings until I woke up this morning. The birds were chattering in the trees, the lush foliage all around was swaying in the breeze, and I could no longer hear the jackhammers and other construction sounds of the city.
Okay, there is actually a lot more I love about my new living arrangements, but they will have to wait until another time as I am running out of room here. Still, I believe I am in a situation that will work for me until I come home in May. After May, well, we'll have to see what happens then.
Today I am in Brisbane, Australia with daughter Rebecca. I was so delighted to see her today, I gave her a HUGE HUG! It's only been 2 weeks since we saw each other last, but so much has happened, it seems much longer. We really have two goals to accomplish here this week. First is to go over some company activities together to make sure she can handle things in Houston for 2 more months (she's doing fine so far). Second is to shop for items I think I need in PNG to help me get by until I come home in May. My list includes a wide variety of things from a computer monitor, to some cooler clothes, to some light-duty tools for fixing things around the apartment. The next posting you'll probably see will be pictures from the lovely (BIG) city of Brisbane!