June 29, 2005

Bite me

I'm still here Kel, the creative juices have just been flowing in a different direction and it is coming along quite nicely thank you. It's late, I should sleep.

On the way home from work tonight I had a couple of plastic bags filled with goodies from the supermarket in my hands and when I stopped at the lights I put them down. Listening to music and mind wandering in the artificial light, cars everywhere no chance to skoot across before the green man. And then out of the corner of my eye I'm conscious of movement and I see my honey dew melon rolling off the pavement in to the t-junction. Shriek. Little dance of despair. Then gravity grabs it and it rolls back towards the gutter and i scurry over and scoop it up. Phew. Then I look around nervously to see if anyone has noticed what a twit I am. I do that multiple times in a day, usually just if i've been talking to myself aloud, or when i walk in to something. Tonight I did the check and the taxi waiting at the lights in front of me was jiggling with mirth. Well the driver and his passenger were. So I cracked up too and was still giggling half way up the hill.

June 22, 2005

Lauren, Bridie, Sarah etc

My flatmates are just hilarious. Like I'm definitely thinking potential American sitcom material. Based on the belief that I am one big walking drama. Although it disturbs me after this evenings conversation that I might assume a Joey/Phoebe type role in any dynamic. But yeah you're fucking hilarious guys. And yes I will be changing the answering machine message while you are away...

I nearly died this evening. There you are, there's a dramatism for ya. Perhaps that isn't a word but I quite like it. But the little Chinese taxi driver that drove me home was either drunk or so short that his foot kept slipping on the brake. I had to close my eyes going up Devon Street, and I am a seasoned narrow Wellington street passenger and have already been in a vehicle (a moving truck actually) that wreaked havoc side swiping another car coming down Devon street before. But I made it home. And the delicious meal and two back to back (almost) episodes of Lost made the dice with death worth daring.

I kind of feel like I should talk about Timaru, as the field trip was a bit of a turning point for me. I discovered I quite like power. If I didn't look so damn young....but I can't really be bothered with details right now. It's my turn to do the dishes...

June 19, 2005

How much would we need to tip the pizza delivery boy?

I don't really do 'organised' that well. I trust that things will just fall in to place and usually get by winging it. The success of last evening could mostly be attributed to the innate organisational genius of Laurie. That, Sarah's purple dress and mojito-making, Sardine-flavoured jelly beans, Nicholas Cage and a dozen phallic renderings (he was all the video-store boy could provide at the last minute). Oh and a dash of serious consumption - that circle of death/i have never ever hybrid was inspired. And lethal.

No stripper. Although the pizza delivery guy and I had a moment when someone yelled from the top of the stairs was he going to come up and dance for us. He would have sufficed. More appropriate than the fireman Laurie had previously suggested.

I enjoyed the fact that a pair of fluffy blood-red lined handcuffs got pulled out for use for the first time in a long while. Such a shame, they really are a lovely pair. Emma read me my horoscope while I was blowing up the better part of 25 pink balloons before the girls started arriving and it was unusually specific and alarmingly relevant and it pretty much told me that I would have my life together....by June 2007. I've decided that means I shouldn't fall in love until after then. 27 is a good age. I pulled out a good one in the game..."I have never ever been in a relationship in the last week". Took out all but two of us.

I just don't know how people can hook up in town. Like I was pretty boozed. And at one stage these relatively cute guys danced drunkenly in to our midst, and the one that didn't keep shouting 'tough crowd' at us, (well mostly at one of the girls who was completely wasted (I knew because she had been whispering conspiratorially to me to that effect since about 9 that evening). She looked decidely unimpressed with the boys' antics, or her hiccups, or something. Becky very kindly offered me up as the sacrificial lamb by clarifying I wasn't one of the hens. This was after 'tough crowd' boy had gone round the group trying to guess the hens and had pointed at me and said "married, definitely married". Perhaps I have some pious visage I pull out in those situations. (And by pious I guess I mean tightass) But his quieter friend introduced himself, and asked if i wanted a drink (I genuinely didn't, or couldn't, at that stage) and did all the things i guess the boy is supposed to do. But I just couldn't think of anything less romantic than hooking up with a stranger in that kind of environment. I'm too old. And what about meningitis! I'm actually painfully shy sometimes..... So I just danced my little heart out. (The diva dance floor is great, wooden and not sticky and not smelling like piss like the lab, god what cigarettes used to mask!).

It was the best party we have had here in my opinion. The fortune telling/meat game affair would be up there for me. But last night everyone was so relaxed and it was great having Awhina back and I spent the night crying with laughter, but at the same time it was emotional, you know. We are all so "growed up". I like that I look around at these girls who I have been friends with since I first came to Wellington seven years ago and think...yes, I definitely want to be doing these kind of things with you all for a long time to come. And I feel excited for those of them that are starting this amazing new chapter in their lives with some very nice young men.

I should think about packing.....

June 16, 2005


It's 11:05pm and I just finished my first overview of the materials for the hospital visit on Monday. I leave Wellie Sunday night. I'm getting a bit nervous now, going to spend the whole day feeling like an accessory, a decoration, a PHONEY. I love that word - that whole catcher in the rye thing. I suppose it will be a good experience for me and i should just focus on that. And look cute and smile a lot. I'm good at those things.

I had a good day today. Kelly and Jacob both got their parcels yesterday, Jacob's chicken pox were very mild (like all of us girls, I wonder if that bodes well for our kids...) and he has been very generous with phone time the last couple of talks. Usually I get a not so subtle....want to talk to dad now? The last couple of times it's been "Do you want some more talk?" (even with the Simpsons starting up in the background) and tonight I even got a "I want to keep talking". Blessed am I. I guess the present helped. He seemed quite happy with his model planes and not in the least disappointed I couldn't get that leopard (spots, get it?) from Wellington Zoo. We were a bit worried it might eat Boo anyhow....

I feel a bit daunted by the weekend, that it will end (after an expected hard night on Saturday) with me hopping on a plane in my cute little pink tweed jacket with two Consultant doctors and a council member, and then it will be the week again. And I still need to come up with some lewd variation to pin the tail on the donkey..........

June 13, 2005

So Many Coincidences, Intricacies, Levels of Touch

I read a book, a long time ago, The Celestine Prophecy, I think I bought it with prize money from school for English or Journalism that should have bought a pulitzer winner or literary classic to get presented with at assembly. But I bought a hippie book instead. And a very cute Anne Geddes calendar. Yeah that didn't go down so good.

The basic premise behind this book is that we have these 'chance' meetings with people, that are anything but chance. Fate is an omnipotent force in all of our lives, and chance encounters, subtle patterns in our seemingly mundane existences, they are like sign posts telling us 'THIS WAY'. That person you keep bumping into, that person or place you're drawn to, you're meant to talk to them, find out their story, learn from them, in some way touch and enrich each other's lives. Well admittedly, it was a long time ago that I read it. But the basic concept still strikes me every now and again.

Tonight was one of those times. I was at the Occidental again (yes, very bourgeois, but so was the dessert party, so what!) with the Red Head (who I have my own theory about, way too many coincidences, I just sense that when I'm with her things are bound to happen, and she hugs me on the side of the road at the end of each evening, like we're long lost soul mates, which perhaps we are, instead of people who have spent just a few short hours together) and that almost-50 year old man who I decided last time I was destined to charm although at that stage I was unsure why. I discovered this evening that he just happens to be in the exact line of work I've decided could be a bit of me. And apparently last time when I didn't go for a drink afterwards he was talking to the Red Head about positions available at his work that he would have to mention to me. I had a great talk with him tonight, and I might just have to email him to learn more. But it was the strangest thing, before I knew all this, the energy drawing me to him, and the fact I could sense it was reciprocated, like he found me in someway attractive (and I in no way mean this in the orthodox sense of the word). Just this kind of openness, interest, yes I can't find a better word - attraction. Curious.

I walked home tonight in the rain with my hood back and my palms upturned and my tongue out, and blew huge jets of warm breath in a straight line out in front of me, amazed by the heat my body was generating even in the winter air. I grinned maniacally at the old man sweeping up his cafe on The Terrace with his Latino music blaring away the last corporate dregs of the day. He looked up at me again and then again, and although his expression was shadowed, I could sense an "is she smiling at me?" emanating from him. I took the stairs up the hill two at a time. I found the fuzzy lichen on the damp wooden fence along the alley that cuts across to my street to be unspeakably gorgeous in the rain-refracted twilight. The boutiquey shop fronts that line the street over which my little house perches were strangely, seductively colourful and vibrant in the mist and streetlight. As I burst up my path at about 9pm to take the rubbish down to the road I suddenly felt like I could suck life up through a straw.

It was Dad's 52nd birthday today, Lou has a new job and apartment lined up in
Auckland (and a blog) and Jacob has the chicken pox. More on all that later....

June 11, 2005


The car carries me in after dark under an umbrella of relentless rain. Moments later, moving with stealth amidst the panther-black clouds he appears. I am not yet aware of the danger. Intermittent sheet lightning the colour of the hottest part of a flame begins to flicker like a dying light bulb, every 30 seconds or so. The hairs on my bare arms are electrified and I look down at them curiously. There is an ominous rumble from out to sea, searching, hungry and I feel my stomach clench. The rain, its comforting laughter, subsides, subdued. A bird calls out a strangled warning from the bushes, but it is too late. He seizes her, smothers her with furious energy, each cataclysmic barrell of thunder pounding into her and leaving her panting. Only a listless whimpering drizzle is left in the shocked stillness between each attack. My own breath quickens as he takes another deep inhalation of thick sodden silence. He moves off murderously along the coast, striking out again, and again, dragging her with him. Why does he despise her so? The sky is thick ebony, oily, choking. Trees stand captivated with fear, enflamed in each devilish lash of light. And then he is finished, releases her, drops her unmoving to the floor. The air is hot and musty and eerily quiet. The thunder calls out a mocking farewell in a foreign sky. A slight breeze stirs, with a gentle, reassuring touch attempts to rouse her. The shivering moon emerges from behind the clouds, and begins to timidly lick her wounds, illuminating silvery droplets (tears? sweat? blood?) on the overgrown paddock.

The drinking is in full swing - the men oblivious to the desecration that has just occurred. Or perhaps they are toasting the pillage. Smokey eye-stinging campfire, seat-less long-drop, rum. I turn my back on it all feeling alienated and exhausted, step calf-deep into the wet grass, surrendering my own form into the peaceful expanse of night. I look up at the stoic mountains, bordered in a soft feminine blue light and feel my gaze returned with maternal empathy and I am struck by the painful realisation of vulnerability and impotence that she has known for aeons.

June 10, 2005

Finishing point/breaking point

I had an argument with the Registrar at drinks after work over the validity of the Power of Now. Which is quite ironic seeing as I have been failing to put it in to practise myself the last couple of days. I don't know why her and I always bump heads, (well I appreciate the headband comment was a bit out of line but I was boozed). I actually think she is really smart and funky and stroppy, admirable qualities in a woman. But she always provokes me at these get togethers. Or maybe I provoke her. Either way eventually it boils down to her and I ranting on and everyone else sitting back looking bemused and trying to enjoy their sauv blanc.

So we had another leaving, this one I was actually genuinely sad about. To mark the departure we had a breakfast yesterday morning at Nikau just within my team. I quite liked the venue, and the patterns on the tops of the coffees and the punctuality, it was nice to get some decent service after the debacle at Flying Burrito Brothers the previous evening, it is the height of rudeness when you ring a restaurant to complain to the Manager about insolent staff (the waiter told me to do some exercises to warm up!) and go straight to a machine. Then we had an impromptu morning tea for her this morning, then a lunch, then I went shopping to find her present, then we had to stop for drinks at 4:30. That is an awful lot of goodbyes. And an awful lack of productivity. Maybe it's why i'm in a better state of mind tonight. Because although I received high praise for my Papers, that are basically finished thank god, all that diverted energy meant something had to give.

Today I realised that if you fail to meet everyones demands and occasionally say, "no that isn't feasible" rather than taking on ownership of every other mongrels problems, there more than likely won't be any splintering consequences. Perhaps for peace of mind I'll let things slide a bit more regularly.

My plans for the weekend are to sleep, do washing, tidy my room, tidy the house a bit, listen to the new U2 CD, sleep a bit more, read, maybe pluck my eyebrows, get some fresh air, go back to sleep. I have a dinner date tomorrow night at a restaurant where I have historically left hungrier than when I arrived and on Sunday a dessert party for Miss B and I think I will make ambrosia. Right now I could have a spew, stomach has been seedy all week....

This morning I walked to work all red in the face from my first trip to the gym since Monday and had my new jacket and a coat and my mittens on and I got to the traffic lights at the corner of Willis and Manners where the green man lights up and the pedestrians scatter simultaneously from all four corners like marbles breaking and this old witchy woman who was collecting for the St Vincent de Paul Society literally leapt with both feet straight into my path and shook her bucket under my nose. I fumbled around with my mittens, gave her some money for that leap and then tried to slink off as she attempted to engage me in a conversation about immunising children against meningicoccal disease. I think she asked if I would immunise. I said, 'oh yeah'. Then she asked where I worked and I pointed up at the crest of my building and told her and she said "Oh that sounds like a good job to have".

It's not the finishing point, but the act of travelling which is important.

June 07, 2005

The bastards!

Just when I resign myself to the fact, well, that I'm going to resign, they go and tell us this morning that we're getting a salary increase. 5% - but 5% is 5%, yeah. I feel some shoes might be in order. Boots, heel-less and calf high and not in the slightest bit fuck me. Actually I can't be bothered thinking about shopping. June is the birthday month, four already in the first week. And I should really be looking for a new job, not thinking how I am going to spend my raise.

Speaking of a new job, I have lovely friends. I got in the door, had some strawberry cheesecake yoghurt for dinner (my stomach's kindof seedy) and the strawberry haired friend (who turns the ripe ole age of 24 tomorrow) handed me a book she had got out of the library for me. "The career guide for creative and unconventional people." I wouldn't immediately have categorised myself as such, but I'm intrigued. Perhaps 'wobbler' translates to unconventional. I'm definitely a wobbler. In the interim, with the job thing, until I do sort something out, I'm going to stop complaining about it. I'm over my quarter life crisis as of today after reading in a magazine at the gym this morning that mid-twenties crises are going to be one of the 'in' things to be doing this season. Are you fucking joking me? Who writes that shit?

Hmmm, what was I talking about....oh yeah nice friends. the psychologist got back from the States today and she bought me these crazy jackpot dice from Las Vegas, some pink and white breast cancer M&Ms, and some Christian Dior "hypnotic poison" from duty free. I smell like delicious vanilla right now. Reminds me of mum.

Oh - the rest of the weekend, Joe's psych test on me was fun. Apparently I played an eleven year old really convincingly. I managed to do all the mathsy ones (some of them were bloody hard) but he gave me a whole lotta puzzles to do that got increasingly more difficult, but it was the first one that kind of threw me. It was one of a girl, with her body in five parts, and when I'd finished there was something not quite right.

"Man, they've given her funny legs, look she's all pigeon toed" (Me)

Then Joe, who I just adore, he's the sweetest thing, very gently leaned over and switched them around and said, "I think they might go this way".

I nearly pissed myself laughing.

The Hat party Sunday night was a blast. They had a whole chest of hats, and I got plonked with a big red and black jester/harlequin monstrosity when I walked in the door, but later I switched to this little salmon pink number that had a Roaring Twenties ring to it. It suited my hair, which is all cropped and highlighted again. (Two hours at the hairdressers on Saturday and the downpayment for a house later). I wanted to take that hat home. I shoulda taken it home.........Apart from the usual saturation of lawyers that you get up at their gigs it was pretty sweet. I even met a real life making-a-living-off-of-it writer.

Next day I went for a short hike at Catchpoole Valley, at the base of the Rimutakas, about 45 minutes drive out of Wellie. Very boggy because of the rain, and we had to wade through the stream to get to the Orongaronga track because the bridge had been washed out, but it's got me intrigued about the potential for more strenuous hiking right here in the wider Wellington region...Maybe a car wouldn't be such a bad thing.....

June 05, 2005

Intensed Out

Awww god...what a weekend. Thank god there is another day in which to get over it. Although I have to go out again tonight. I'm getting a bit anti-social. Just too much people contact at the moment. I NEED TO GO BUSH!

I did have fun last night, I did. It was just too intense. The whole evening. The birthday dinner was like a reunion of sorts, with everyone sitting around comparing career trajectories and post-graduate qualifications and business cards and how much their freakin bottles of wine cost. Sorry I shouldn't be saying this, but it fucked me off, and perhaps it only got to me because I feel a bit lost and don't know what I'm doing at the moment, in which case I should get over myself.

I felt like a great big phoney too, when I had a cuddle and a conversation with someone who I profess an intense dislike for (admittedly I didn't initiate it). Well it's not that I dislike him. I just don't trust him. Since he pretended he was going to pull the car over that he was driving with him and I the only passengers late one night on a long road trip and kill me and bury me somewhere along the Desert Road. Which could have been funny, except he sustained it for much too long, actually slowed the car down and when I got really angry he didn't apologise or back off. I know some would consider my reaction OTT, but I won't ever forgive those kind of deliberate intimidation tactics.

And Jessie's farewell was a bit sad. Like I hardly know her, but then I've been to 21sts where I didn't really know the person and got moved by the speeches and the unadulterated emotion. But Hot Swiss Mistress was AMAZING. What a fantastic thing to be able to boogie right up in the face of such talent in someone's lounge! I would definitely buy an album but apparently they don't have one. Why not? The drummer was pretty cute. I have a bit of a thing for drummers. Jimmy thinks I should buy some. Drums, not drummers. But he was intoxicated at the time he said it and probably can't remember. I'm listening to Breaks Co-op at the moment. God there is some amazing NZ music around, such a good energy about it, and it feels like it's gaining momentum and the world better look out.

Oh good, that sudden reflection improved my mood. I woke up with the potential to be in a bad mood, not that hungover, just thirsty, but I woke up and fell back asleep and woke up again with a distinct sense of gwumpy. But Sarah saved me and took me to a cute movie, I think it was called Lavendar Ladies, or Ladies of Lavender, one of those films that allows you to look both inside and outside of yourself and you walk out of the theatre and everything is that little bit more vivid and alive to you. It's got Judy Dench in it. Man she's a good crier. And some nice violin music. Made me want to go to the symphony...

Ooh that that was the clinical psychologist in training on the phone, and he wants to come around now and do a test on me designed for 11-18 year olds. I wonder if I was the first person that sprung to mind.....

And then off to this party. Big smile girl, you can do it!

June 04, 2005

Where was the Power of Now when I Needed it

I didn't realise just how badly my day at work had effected me until I woke up with this horrible lurch at about 6:15am this morning and realised I had had the worst sleep I have had in a looooooong time.

The team is down two staff, Council meeting is looming - I have four particularly nasty papers to write for it, one of them for an applicant who has previously gone to the press with his very strong misgivings about the organisation, (the first phone conversation I ever had with him I got an absolute earful, he's much more congenial now he realises what a doll I am). I can deal with tantrums from strangers though. Usually people have lots of things going on behind the scenes, god I've been there done that. What's more, if you have the right information and the right tone you can walk away from encounters thinking, yes - that was the right way to handle that. For some strange reason, without the phone screening my 'tiny' physique, I just generally feel I don't come off quite as convincing. I discovered last night that I need to work on this because I have to be able to deal with bullshit in-house with people I see every day as well.

At about 5:05 friday afternoon I got three very terse (and misguided) emails in short succession from a woman in IT. The matter could have very easily waited until after the weekend. Instead I spent some quarter of an hour on the phone responding to her bullying tactics with a knife edge to my voice (I'm quite sure I was on speaker phone) and I got off decidedly agitated. I've never had any problems with her before, although she is probably one of the least personable people I have met in the organisation and just generally seems unhappy. Then the manager came running over and in her characteristic passive aggressive style asking "are you okay, you're not growly are you?" No, not growly. Fucked off. Well I didn't say that, just fobbed her off. I left soon after and met up with a friend (from the Abel Tas trip) went to town and did some serious retail therapy (including a cute jacket I've bought to wear to Timaru, well that is how I am justifying it), then went and had a drink and a rejuvenating gossip in Rouge.

Got home, rang step-mum to say happy 39th birthday (wink, wink) and then went to bed and tossed and turned about whether or not I had done the right thing and deserved a bollicking, and whether I wanted to work for an organisation and in a role where the bureaucratic culture is so all-pervading that there is no scope to make independent (and informed) decisions and then live by them. So today I might go buy a newspaper and start assessing if it really is an employee's market at the moment.

June 02, 2005

Why Little People Shouldn't Drink Coffee

Almost 12 hours after I drunk it and I'm sooooooooo wide awake. Probably an expectation effect. That is what the psychologist in the house would tell me - if she wasn't still in the US. Or it could be the slightly spicy green curry I ate not that long ago - i'm really liking tofu and eggplant at the moment.

I do love the smell and quite like the taste of coffee. It just usually makes me nauseous and exemplifies the shaking ten-fold.

The shaking. There is an interesting idiosyncrasy. That's what I have been trying to think of it as late. With my first conscious memory of it going back to my second year primary school teacher referring to me as "Miss Wibbly Wobbly" on a school report card, it's become quite tedious explaining "No, I'm not cold, it's just something i've always done". I have come to the conclusion I need to own it, to accept it gracefully like you would the onset of old age, as an inevitability. I have learnt no amount of cardio, magnesium, acupuncture, yoga, gp consultations, blood tests, and curious or downright rude comments from people not used to me will ever overcome it entirely. (I turned down the offer of 'mild' epilepsy drugs from a well meaning doctor). Exercise, supplements, eating frequently and abstinence (from overconsumption of liquor of course) definitely help, but it's completely out of my control beyond those variables. And it can be embarrassing! I hate how transparent it makes me, because it's at its absolute worst when i'm upset or angry, or nervous, or people around me are upset or angry or nervous. It makes it very hard to seem tough!

So one day when I was in to my first course of acupuncture for it I walked in to the Chinese medicine shop on the corner of Left Bank and Cuba mall, and was met by a curious hybrid of feng shui heaven and a drug store. I ignored the brass cats and buddhas and fans and incense and spiritual books and went straight to the pottles and jars that lined the left hand wall of the store, which were all labelled in Chinese . So I approached the wizened old almond-coloured woman with slanted dancing eyes sitting behind the counter, and feeling quite confident in my comprehension of eastern medicine's diagnosis of my 'shakes', I asked what herbs she stocked for liver blood deficiency or 'internal wind'. 'Internal wind' is the term I had heard my acupuncturist use and I liked that it had been made tangible with these words, where western medicine had always left it a shapeless foe, it suddenly had a name and potentially a cure. But as I spoke her eyes burned with even brighter animation, and I was understandably taken aback when she put her hand to her stomach and asked,


No no. A slight language barrier led to more charades and the procurement of an unidentified jar of tiny metallic grey ball bearing type pills, that I was apparently supposed to take 100 of each day. Or something like that. The dosage was also in Chinese. I left the shop feeling slightly less confident of a full recovery...

June 01, 2005

Message received at 6:02 pm

"It says Bridie, Sarah and something....please leave a message".

"Just hang up. It's the message machine".

"Hhhh-Hiiiiii, Bridie. It's us. Me and Dad. We were just wondering if you were home. Thank you. (cutest little I'm such a big boy and so pleased with myself giggle you ever heard) ".

The not so cute part. They had already reached me at work on my cell earlier in the evening before I got the message, and although I got about five minutes of polite conversation, along the lines of,
"How's school?" "cool" "How's grandma" "cool" "How's Sam"? "Good" "How's Boo?" "Bad" (she wasn't bad, he was just messin with me), it deteriorated rapidly when I made the mistake of asking him,
"Guess what I did today?".

"Ummm......did a crap".

And what the hell are you supposed to say to that?