Week 10: New Food, Fun & Whales

Hey everyone!  I hope you’re doing well.  We are still playing catch-up, but I went on vacation and tried/saw lots of new things, so I didn’t want to skip it or forget about it.  So, even though we are now at the end of the month, let’s travel back to the beginning of March when my mom and I went on a cruise to Mexico.

This was not the first time I had been on a cruise, or been to Mexico; in fact, cruising might be my favorite way to travel, because once you get on the boat, you don’t have to really think about anything.  One of the best/ most ‘dangerous’ things about cruises is the unlimited supply of food available.  This can be dangerous if you eat non-stop to the point where by the end of the week you can no longer fit into your clothes.  I didn’t have that problem, but I did gain a couple pounds, most likely from the unlimited supply of soda and the delicious chocolate desserts that followed every meal, but I digress.

One of the cool things about that unlimited supply of food is that since it’s all prepaid, you can order anything you want.  If you don’t like it, you can try something else!  If you are a picky eater like me, and therefore hesitant to order food you might not like at a regular restaurant, a cruise provides an excellent opportunity to try new foods without consequence to your wallet or feeling obligated to finish something you really didn’t like.  Talk about awesome!  I tried many new dishes on this cruise, and was pleasantly surprised to discover a few new dishes I enjoyed.  By far the biggest shocker was escargot.  I mean snails… really??  But they were actually pretty good!  I won’t be rushing out to eat them again any time soon, but I tried them and I kind of liked them.  I didn’t finish them because the night they were on the menu was lobster night, and I like lobster more than chocolate, so I had to save room.

There were several other dishes that I tried, but sadly I did not write them down, and I cannot recall them off the top of my head.  Many of them were seafood dishes, and one of them involved shrimp.  I love shrimp cocktail, but this was something different.  It’s fitting considering that Mazatlán (the second port we stopped at) is home to a gigantic shrimp market.

Food wasn’t the only type of new experience I had on this trip.  In Mazatlán we visited the Cathedral Basilica de la Immaculada Concepcion, which is unique in that it’s a Roman Catholic church that displays the Star of David on 28 windows due to a generous donation from a Jewish family.  Now, I’m not religious, but I find those types of historical tidbits fascinating.  But that was not the most exciting new experience from this trip (at least not for my mom and I.)  The best part of the trip occurred at our final port, Cabo San Lucas, where we went on a whale watch.

Whale watches are far from new to me.  I have loved them since I was little, but this one was special.  At the very end of the trip, literally right after the guide told us we had five more minutes to look for whales before we had to turn back, I saw a light turquoise color in the water just a few feet in front of the boat.  The turquoise was the white part of a humpback whale’s pectoral fins nearing the surface of the water.  I shouted “WHALE!” and pointed right in front of me.  We then spent the next five minutes watching the whale as it hung out by our boat.  It seemed like the whale was as interested in watching the boat as we were in watching it because after it left our boat, it swam over to another one nearby.

Seeing a humpback whale that close up is an experience I will never forget.  It was exciting and calming all at once.  To see such a large, graceful creature just lazing about near the surface of the water was beautiful.  It was a perfect was to end our day in Cabo San Lucas.  And now if you’ll excuse me, I think I’ll go watch the video I took of that whale because it was just that awesome.  Have a good one!

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Week 9: A New Role

Greetings everyone!  I apologize for being nearly a month late with this post (yikes!).  I actually had it written on schedule, and just forgot to post it before I went on vacation.  Then I got back, and as it does, life intervened.  But I’m still here, and I am going to do my best to get us back up to date because a lot of new things have happened and I am eager to share them with you all!  So, let’s get started.

So far, since I’ve started this blog, I have been the one to choose what new thing I was going to try, but that’s not always the case.  Sometimes life decides to present you with something new whether you want it or not.  Life can bring changes about in many ways.  In this case, life introduced a change at work.

As many people in the work force know, over time your job changes.  Sometimes the change is brought about by a promotion, or by you applying for a new job.  Other times, the change is brought about by a change in management, the company landscape, or a shift in the responsibilities of your role.  This week my something new is training for a new job function at work.

I can’t say I’m thrilled with this something new.  I have resisted training for this role for a long time because I do not feel it points me in the direction I want to move in my career.  However, the time has finally come where management has made it mandatory for everyone in my department to learn all the roles so I have no choice and this week I started training.  I won’t lie, a teeny tiny voice in my head wants to be terrible at this job so they will never schedule me there.  However, the louder and more logical voice in my head reminds me that I would not be able to live with the guilt of purposely doing bad at anything.  I don’t like to fail, so why would I purposely try to?  Plus, that louder voice also reminds me that if I do well now, I will hopefully have more opportunities to train in areas I actually want to be in later.

As for the training experience, it went fine.  I did learn a bit about the role and I took a bunch of notes.  Since it’s now mandatory just want to learn it and get it over with as soon as I can so I don’t have to do it often.  One thing I am thankful for its that my manager is aware of the direction I want to move in my career and he understands that this role is not it.  I have had multiple managers since I started working and I can appreciate how valuable it is to have a manager who listens and makes an effort to help you grow in the direction you want to go.  While I hate it, I understand that all jobs have parts we don’t want to do, but one thing I have learned in my life is that nothing is forever.  So, with that in mind, I will go forward, do my best, and learn this new role so I can start training in the job I want to be doing next.

Just a couple updates before I go, the temporary housing situation I wrote about in Week 3 has come to an end.  My condo is not ready yet, but I had to leave my temporary condo before going on vacation.  I enjoyed living in downtown LA again, and it was a very valuable learning experience living with my boyfriend for about two months.

Beyond that, initial feedback from the editor on the article I mentioned in week 4 is positive.  I’m looking forward to when it’s actually published with a nervous excitement.  In other writing news, progress on the book I am writing for the conference I wrote about in week 2 is slow.  I’m hoping it will speed up when I’m on vacation sitting by a pool and writing in my phone.  I also plan on skipping the part I’m on and writing a more exciting part that comes later.  Hopefully that helps, I’ll let you know.