Friday, May 30, 2008

Passed along...

What I was doing:
10 years ago: May 1998
I was 11 years old. I was probably running around in the woods, or sitting on the lawn making necklaces out of dandelions. I might have been wandering around, thinking up stories or hiding in a tree scribbling away at the stories I had thought up.

5 years ago: May 2003.
I was a sophmore in highschool and just turned 16. I wasn't driving yet, but I was learning. I had just started my job at the CI as a waitress. I was to work there for about two years, including a summer when I was only home for 3 months.

1 year ago:May 2007.
Very tired, but so alive! I was busy walking around the neighborhood, making new friends, playing soccer. Just about to move out of the Lewis' house, which was such a lovely home to stay in. That is an amazing family! (their blog) I was just about to get my own apartment (with no clue that the landlord had the date mixed up and thought that I was not coming until July! Thank God for Him stepping in so that I had that apartment on time!)

Yesterday: Thursday... I was tired and wanted to do homework and rest. I went with Biruk to look at a house he might rent, but that turned into going to the airport, then driving back to their house because Biruk got stuck with hauling their suitcases in his car. Staying at the house for injera, and 'real'/organic chicken(an no one believed me that I had eaten non-grocery store chicken before). I was about to fall asleep when Biruk took pity on me and decided to head home. The other guys who live here don't wake up as early as we do and can't understand our early bed times.

5 snacks I enjoy:
yogurt. dry cereal. dried cranberries. kettle corn flavored popcorn. limes (i like to eat them like oranges)

What I’d do with 100 million dollars:
Invest some of it, for sure.

Fund the education (all the way through college or other type of secondary schooling) for children in various countries where education is a luxury.

Pay for hearing aid's for Biruk's dad. It would be so nice to have a conversation with him that doesn't have us screaming at one another.

Send various friends to visit their home countries and see their families, because so many haven't been back there for a long time and are desperately wanting to go.

Go to Phi Phi Island.. I was thinking about that place today. I want to see what it looks like now. Did that sidewalk I helped repair hold up? How does the school look now? Did they rebuild building that stood there before- the place where we played soccer.

Buy a cell phone. :)

5 places I’d love to run away to:
I already mentioned Phi Phi Island- it really is a paradise, its one of those places where forget what what day it is- of the week and of the month!

The Alvarenga house, in the double bed, squished between J and E, giggling until we fall asleep.

The dock at Hilltop Christian Camp, late at night, looking at the stars (because it is a different place at night with stars)

Somewhere where I can hike, boulder and camp

Hobby Lobby

Friday, May 23, 2008

A little over 24 hours

That's how long I was unemployed.

I went in to talk. And we talked.
He thanked me for quitting. (A bit strange).
Said it had made him think and realize how he was changing and treating people. Me quitting helped him realize that. He actually said he owed me a favor because I had helped him gain that insight.

Since the reason I quit was being worked on, and no longer should be an issue, I decided to take the offer and return to my job. However, there still is a change- my morning to sleep in, my day of rest left me hopeful and anxious to not have a job for a while- to rest, dance to the music on TV, to make myself a nice breakfast in the morning, to avoid doing my school work, do some school work, go for a jog... I wouldn't mind, infact I would like more of that. Perhaps it was the joy of a few hours all to myself without interuption or screaming children or telephones. So I resumed my job, but under the condition that when a replacement was found for me, I would be done. Previously, there had been talk about me taking another position until my visa expired. However, I think I'll do something else, depending on when the visa expires.

If it doesn't pour rain (AGAIN!) tomorrow, I will be going to the 2nd largest zoo in North America. MONKEYS!!!!

The Emails...

It's quarter to ten in the morning and I only woke up a little while ago. I'm brewing tea in a pot on the stove, munching on this great cranberry bread/toast and I'm sure I ate way too many cookies last night.
Biruk called G's cell phone, as that seemed the only way to reach me. (G is the brother of the owner of the house, and the only other person here. The owner of the house is in Ethiopia for a while).

This is sort of what I told him;
Since there was no way to reach me via telephone, everyone emailed. My facebook inbox was busy last night. I received an email from each of my managers. Two of them insisted that we still go to the zoo this weekend, before ending their emails with, 'will you come back?'. And they all said that my job was still 'my job' as long as I wanted it.
The GM (who is the most important in this senario, read yesterday's blog) wrote a nice email. He didn't make excuses, but did say he was going to personally apologize to the employee that this was all about. He thanked me for my time working there, hoped that I would stay and understood if I did not. It was really nice. He even ended it saying that he thought I was a 'good person'. Perhaps in a church, I would cringe at that. But he called himself cynical, so for him to see me as 'a good person' means alot.
I instant-messengered with one of my managers until about midnight (which is later than I've stayed up to in... months!) and he said that he agreed with me and my decision, but he hoped that I would come back.
Also, apparently they all need to attend Health class again because they don't really understand about all that. That should be mandatory- no positions of leadership at a workplace until you can pass a 6th grade health exam and prove that you understand about menstration, pregnancy and other issues invovled.
I'm going in a little while so that we can talk- about me coming back, not to teach.

Biruk thinks that I should take the job back- I know part of his reason is that I might leave in June if I don't, and he doesn't want that. He says that my reasons for quitting were valid and he's really proud of me, but since the GM is going to apologize, and hopefully he won't do...nothing in that type of situation again, I should accept the offer. Biruk's brother and H (at my other semi-residence) said that he learned his lesson and wouldn't ever do it again (that was before I was offered my job back). I'm thinking about it.

Stay tuned...

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Morning Time Line

5:45 am. wake up, get ready for work.
6:35 am. get on the bus.
7:00 am. start work, help open the store.
8:30 am. quit my job.
9:00 am. taxi drops me off at H's house.
9:30 am. hold the baby while H vacuums the house.
10:00 am. Issa's family arrives (they drove for over a day to get here).
since 3 extra full-sized people and 2 half sized people will be at the house, I was sort of asked to stay at the place where Biruk is staying (only he's not staying there- he's staying at his aunt's house, so for now its just kinda me staying there.)
10:55 am. head to the bus stop for the place where I'm gonna spend the next couple of days.
Full day, and it's not even noon!

I bet you are wondering why I quit my job. The shortest (and probably nicest) way to put it is that I felt that the GM of the company was acting inappropriately. He insinuated to an employee that her job was at stake if she did not show up for work, despite that she said she was sick. After her arrival, more of the story unfolded and as I was in charge (while he was getting his car serviced, on company time and money) I made the decision that she should go home. Under no circumstances should she stay, nor walk home. I was going to call a cab for her, but the GM had just returned. I suggested that he should drive her and he refused. Even after learning how dire the situation was and about the personal risks invovled, he didn't care. I asked him why he didn't care and he said that he had other things to worry about (but had the time to get his car serviced only minutes before).
I work at a donut factory- when some one's child has died and their health and well-being is at stake nothing is more important than that- especially nothing invovling donuts. It was because of his threats that she came to work, which she should not have done, but I won't deny that she did so of her own free will. However, he has responisbility because he is in a position of leadership at work and his response in an urgent situation was completely inexcusable, let alone as someone in charge with people looking up to him and following his directions.
I could not work for someone who is willing to put the health of others at stake for... donuts?
Dad says that I should have put my two week's notice in. I don't know... I thought about it today, I'm still not sure. I know I should have quit, that's not a question.
I put him in a spot, being short staffed this afternoon- but I didn't quit with that intention or to do that, it was was part of the outcome.

So, for now I have no access to a phone- Biruk's cousin is going to let me borrow her pay-as-you-go cell phone. I have no job. and no address.
However, I have internet. A box of cookies which I might just consume all of. A bed all to myself (which I haven't had since S moved in about a month ago). A bedroom all to myself (which I had since those 5 days in January and the 1 night in the hotel in Chicago because of my plane delays). I'm sheltered. I have TV to watch and lots of time tomorrow to do my homework. I'm got a nice nap this afternoon and feel pretty happy.

My life feels a bit adventurous again- what am I gonna do next week?
Am I going to be packing my bags and getting ready to move back to Indiana for the summer?
Would anyone hire me to work for 3 months (a little less- I'm headed to Swizterland in the end of July and begin college in the end of August)?

Will I be living in Biruk's house (well- it's not his house, it's where he lives part of the week)?
Am I job hunting in a few days?
Who would hire me when my work permit/visa (whatever it is- I'm legal to work here) expires the end of July (and I'm headed to Swizterland in the end of July)?

Do I want to leave Calgary already?
How would things work if I went back to Indiana early?
What about things with Biruk- when will I see him again?

I want to spend more time with his family, who arrive in July- will that happen?
I can spend more time with my family if I go home early- but what would I do? Distance learning courses for the next few months?

I'm not stressed, I'm just considering the pluses and minuses of my options. I don't know what I should do- but I also have time to figure it out- about a week or so.

Tomorrow I will sleep in late, eat some breakfast, do a bit of laundry and some homework. On a Friday! and then Saturday I get to sleep in late again!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Biruk called me the other day to explain why he was cancelling our date-
He was at the airport picking up his grandmother who he hasn't seen in probably 10 years.

We knew she was coming, eventually. He said that they knew of the slim, (very slim) possibility that she would be arriving on Monday.
They all met her at the airport- ready to jump over the rope while she waited to pass through security/immigration. They had to introduce themselves, as she recognized no one (including Biruk). They all cried (excluding Biruk).
It seems like a miracle- and it is- only by God could all of this have taken place, only because of him.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Long Weekend

This weekend is called 'Long Weekend' there is some holiday on Monday, but the whole weekend is what is celebrated- signs and people announce "Happy Long Weekend!"

Our plan was to go to Edmonton (I want to go bungee jumping at the West Edmonton Mall. Apparently there is also a roller coaster to ride- all within the mall!) however, those plans fell through.
So this morning we decided to go to Banff.
We got a late start, Biruk forgot his wallet and only noticed half way there. He also refused to change out of his sweats, despite how nice the weather was and my requests that he change. He later mentioned that he was so hot and he didn't realize how touristy Banff was (I knew he would feel out of place walking around in a tourist area in his sweatpants, but he never listens to me). And he forgot his cellphone, which was fine with me, more quiet.

The mountains were FANTASTIC. I always see them in the distance, the background of the city- but to see them up close is breathtaking. The mountains in West Virginia are covered in trees (or atleast the ones I have seen) but these are rugged and almost look fake. I was amazed to look at them up close and had to remind myself that this was not a movie set.

We drove to a park and decided to take a nap outside. We didn't really think it through, but just grabbed the blanket and pillows from the car and headed out. We wanted to look at the mountains and that led us to walking down the rugged path down the side of the mountain in flip flops and ballet flats, and a skirt (me, not Biruk). However, we had a beautiful view of the mountain across from us and a nice sunny spot to nap in. Pictures on another day.
Later, I changed to shorts and sneakers and we actually took a hike. Down to the very bottom- with a lake/river flowing from the melting snow that runs down the side of the mountains. It was too cold (still chunks of snow in the water).
I had so much fun- all day outside (I got a sunburn, even), hiking in the mountains (okay, not really hiking, we only spent an hour or so) but it was wonderful.
Spending the night was out of the question- as every hotel said 'no vacancy', we didn't have a tent and Biruk refused to sleep in the car. He suggested spending the night on the blankets, but I told him that we would be found by a ranger and kicked out. And then on his hike back he saw a moose or elk skeleton that he guessed had been killed by a bear and that changed his mind about sleeping outside without a tent.