almost at home…

I’ve lived in my new place for just over three months now. I have to say that I’m so glad I moved.

I loved my old place and neighborhood in Toluca Lake/NoHo Arts District, but I moved because, after being in the same neighborhood for thirteen years and the same apartment for ten years, I felt that parts of my life had grown stagnant (especially the romantic part of life). I needed a change of scene.

My move to Burbank certainly provided that. Within a few months of moving, I ended up at JPL and in a relationship with HSTeacher. After that broke up, I found myself in a new one with CuteFilmNerd within weeks (that relationship lasted until a few days before my most recent move). However, I never felt at home in Burbank, even though it was only a few miles from my previous neighborhood. Something about the vibe never sat right with me. It didn’t take long before I realized that, for whatever reason, I was not built for the Foothill communities.

Five years later – after obtaining treatment for my depression/anxiety, getting a car, working on getting on a better financial footing, etc. – I found myself living on the south side of the Hollywood Hills. A place familiar to me from my outings, but very different from many of the places where I’d previously lived. An area that might be a tad less safe than San Fernando Valley suburbia, but is much more vibrant. More in line with who I feel myself to be.

It doesn’t quite feel like home (certainly not as much as San Francisco or Washington, D.C.), but I definitely feel comfortable here. It’s a good start.

damn that fitness bug…

…that’s crawled up my ass.

A couple of weeks ago I thought it might be nice to start exercising a little. I mean, there’s a gym in the basement of my work building and I don’t have to pay anything to use it. I’ve used it before. It’s not like it’s an unknown quantity. Sure, it has bested me in the past, but I haven’t developed a gym phobia as a result of my unsuccessful battles. It’s just that I was either constantly forgetting my gym clothes or lazy (or both). Finally I remembered my stuff, found something resembling energy, thereby heading down to the gym to use the treadmill after work. How I slogged through the thirty minute walk I’ll never know. But I made it. And did crunches when I got home. And strained my back, which put me off of exercising again.

But wait! It was not for months and months on end this time. For a week later I once again had an overwhelming desire to use the treadmill! Which I did again the following day and the day after that!

And so an exerciser was born.

There has only been one day in the last week where I haven’t had at least thirty minutes of exercise and on that day I spent in my new apartment (isn’t it pretty? And now it’s got furniture in it!) making lists and sketching and doing general “What do I need to make my apartment Home?” kind of things.

Now I’m eagerly waiting for my payday tomorrow so I can pick up a fitbit and a new pair of athletic shoes (because my older pairs are not providing the support that I need). These are the things that are keeping me motivated, as is keeping my Runkeeper profile updated.

A big thank you goes out to CuteNerdBoy for his help, recommendations and support. (If you click on that link, be prepared for much angst and emo-ness. But things have smoothed out between us and we’re still good friends, even if we don’t hang out as much as we’d like to.) Thanks also go out to CuteFilmNerd, with whom I’ve retained a close friendship, for his encouragement. I’ve also gotten him on Runkeeper and he’s used it pretty much every day – it seems to be keeping him motivated too.

(Also, there is a chance that I may be re-befriending HSTeacher. We’ve gotten back in contact and have discussed getting together for dinner – if our schedules ever mesh. But he hasn’t been instrumental in the whole fitness thing. Movin’ along…)

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One might ask, “So, Carol, why do you have a fitness bug up your ample yet shapely butt that has infected your brain with a possibly incurable Corpus sanus bacteria?”

Good question, anonymous reader! And unlike many good questions, I actually have an answer for this one.

I’m tired. Tired of my loss of flexibility (though I’m still more flexible than one might think when looking at me). Tired of a certain loss of mobility. And very tired of so much lost stamina. I lose my wind so very easily and I am sick of it.

While I’m not completely happy with my current weight (the heaviest I’ve ever been), the actual existence of the weight doesn’t psychologically bother me. My contrary nature almost wants to keep it on so that I can show people that a person doesn’t have to be thin to be healthy (my vitals are still amazingly good – better than many people my age, despite their size) and sexy.

But.

My various injuries and ailments have taken their toll and that, combined with the added weight, makes me more uncomfortable in my skin than I’d like. And I’m just sick of being uncomfortable.

Thus the exercising.

Losing weight isn’t my primary goal, but I’m fully aware that it will be a very noticeable side-effect of my efforts. I have no problem with that, as some of my clothes have gotten a little too tight and I just don’t have the money for an all new wardrobe. And I have some very cute clothes that I haven’t been able to wear in a while, so it would be nice to fit in them again.

“But Carol,” my hypothetical reader may ask, “while being comfortable in your skin is a very good reason to start exercising again, could there possibly be an external reason for this flurry of activity?”

Oh, you saw right through me, Clever Hypothetical Reader. Yes, being comfortable again is a very good (and still primary) reason for my single-mindedness of late. But yes, there is another reason why I want to build up my lost stamina: The Secret Stairs of Los Angeles.

I love hidden stairs that connect neighborhoods. And there are a fair amount of these hidden staircases not far from my new place. I’ve long wished to attend these walks, but the desire has grown keener over the past month, accompanied by a disappointment that I cannot hope to participate at this time.

So I’m getting myself stronger. I will be able hike up Los Angeles’ secret staircases and enjoy the sights that these hikes have to offer.

Ooh, I’m getting all excited again! Is it 5:30pm yet? Can I leave work and get on the treadmill again? Pretty please?

so fast…

It’s hard to believe that today marks a year since I first met HSTeacher. It was a blind date, of sorts – we both had profiles on OKCupid. He had originally emailed me on OkCupid while I was in the midst of working on congressional campaign. I didn’t see the note because, if it wasn’t campaign related, it wasn’t on my radar. About a month or so later he emailed me again, a few weeks after the primary election. Since my candidate didn’t win, I had a little time to respond. After a few emails and a couple of phone calls, we agreed to meet at a Starbucks near my place in late afternoon, since he was on summer vacation and I was unemployed (but interviewing madly). He showed up in his convertible with a bike on a rack in the rear, because he had told me over the phone that he was just going to get rid of it, so if I wanted to put money into it (the seat was torn up and the tires needed work), it was mine.

The coffee date turned into a dinner date and, nine hours after first laying eyes on one another, we walked back to his car, whereupon he took my hand and held it. I was surprised, but touched. He dropped me off at my apartment with a nice, gentlemanly little kiss.

After so many first dates last year, I didn’t hold out hope, but before I knew it we were in an actual relationship. And, for the most part, it’s been an excellent one.

Happy anniversary, honey. I love you.

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it’s all mine…

…and it’s soooo pretty! Came all charged up, ready to run, which was good, since I needed it for meetings on Saturday (which is when I picked it up). At the Coordinating Committee meeting I stroked it lovingly, in full view of everyone, and made MusicianMan sputter a laugh as I mouthed, “My preciousss…” The chair of SoCal Grassroots even made mention of my new acquisition, since I opened it and worked on it while at a meeting at his place earlier in the day.

Later that night, while at HSTeacher’s home, I loaded up some nice programs. The next day the two of us sat in his living room, quietly working on our respective laptops (his is a 15″ Apple Titanium PowerBook) much as another couple would read the newspaper on a Sunday morning. The extent of our collective geekiness made me laugh.

Next step in entering the 21st Century: getting high-speed intenet. Then a cell phone with Bluetooth (which may end up being a hand-held).

*sigh*

tripping to and fro…

…Tucson, that is.

Last weekend HSTeacher and I drove to Tucson for an overnight stay so that we could attend the naming ceremony for BestFriend’s new baby girl. It was a long drive, to be sure, and I admit to a bit of trepidation, as road trips are notorious for bringing out the worst in people. Thankfully my fears (and, I found out later, HSTeacher’s) were unfounded, as the outing went well. Doesn’t mean there weren’t moments of tense to be had. But we weathered those moments well and realized, yeah, we still like and love each other. In the end, it was all good. Plus, though HSTeacher has not yet met my family – what with most of them being flung all over the damn place – he did meet BestFriend and her family, including her parents and sister. The only people I’ve known longer than them are my own family, and they’ve long been another family to me. And BestFriend approves of HSTeacher, which is always of the good.

And now for some photos from the weekend:

Saturday was cloudy and threatened to rain, but luckily the rain stayed away.

I have a love of taking pictures of landscapes and clouds, so the nature obliged me by combining both in one easy to take picture.

We shared the driving duties heading out of town (HSTeacher was the primary driver heading home). Here HSTeacher has his turn at the wheel.

And what to I do when I get behind the wheel? Endanger our lives by taking pictures. Thing is, I only looked away for one second to frame this shot. Not bad, huh?

As the clouds rolled in, threatening us with rain, the sky took on a surreal quality.

I have pictures from visitng BestFriend, and from the wonderful ceremony, but I haven’t gotten permission to publish them, so they won’t go up here. However, just as we were leaving, we got BFSis to take this picture:

And as we left BestFriend’s house, the Tucson sunset greeted us:

After a long drive, we saw Downtown Los Angeles welcoming us home:

(Okay, that was actually me taking the picture the next day as I was driving home from HSTeacher’s place – we had rented a car for the weekend. But is still makes a good timeline, doesn’t it?)

A good weekend, all told. I’m very happy we did it.

tripping to and fro…

…Tucson, that is.

Last weekend HSTeacher and I drove to Tucson for an overnight stay so that we could attend the naming ceremony for BestFriend’s new baby girl. It was a long drive, to be sure, and I admit to a bit of trepidation, as road trips are notorious for bringing out the worst in people. Thankfully my fears (and, I found out later, HSTeacher’s) were unfounded, as the outing went well. Doesn’t mean there weren’t moments of tense to be had. But we weathered those moments well and realized, yeah, we still like and love each other. In the end, it was all good. Plus, though HSTeacher has not yet met my family – what with most of them being flung all over the damn place – he did meet BestFriend and her family, including her parents and sister. The only people I’ve known longer than them are my own family, and they’ve long been another family to me. And BestFriend approves of HSTeacher, which is always of the good.

And now for some photos from the weekend:

Saturday was cloudy and threatened to rain, but luckily the rain stayed away.

I have a love of taking pictures of landscapes and clouds, so the nature obliged me by combining both in one easy to take picture.

We shared the driving duties heading out of town (HSTeacher was the primary driver heading home). Here HSTeacher has his turn at the wheel.

And what to I do when I get behind the wheel? Endanger our lives by taking pictures. Thing is, I only looked away for one second to frame this shot. Not bad, huh?

As the clouds rolled in, threatening us with rain, the sky took on a surreal quality.

I have pictures from visitng BestFriend, and from the wonderful ceremony, but I haven’t gotten permission to publish them, so they won’t go up here. However, just as we were leaving, we got BFSis to take this picture:

And as we left BestFriend’s house, the Tucson sunset greeted us:

After a long drive, we saw Downtown Los Angeles welcoming us home:

(Okay, that was actually me taking the picture the next day as I was driving home from HSTeacher’s place – we had rented a car for the weekend. But is still makes a good timeline, doesn’t it?)

A good weekend, all told. I’m very happy we did it.

channelling jimmy carter…

Oh, not in the diplomatic way, or in the building homes for Habitat for Humanity way (though I’ve done some work with them in the past) or even in a lust in my heart sort of way (though, you know, I have many times since puberty).

No, much like the country over which Carter presided when he spoke of a crisis in confidence, I’m feeling malaise.

All day I’ve tired and achy, with a bit of crankiness thrown in. Bones are too heavy to move. Mucsles think atrophy would be just peachy, swearing that vice-grips hold them in one place. Eyelids threaten to close. Brain wants to shut off and roll under the covers. People completely annoy the crap out of me.

Some moments I’m almost okay, but then a wave of malaise hits me anew, and I just want to crawl under my desk and curl up, waiting for it to go away and hoping I’ll feel better soon.

The timing is, of course, rotten, as I’ll be going to Tucson this weekend with HSTeacher. Sunday BestFriend and her family are having a naming ceremony for her new baby girl and HSTeacher and I will be driving there and back. It’ll be the first time we go on a trip together, so I’m excited. But I’m also feeling a little trepidation, as we’ll be driving fourteen hours round-trip and I am not a fan of long drives. I hope my crankiness clears up by the time we head out of L.A., else I will not be a fun traveling companion.

Of course I have tons of things to do tonight, but I lack the energy to do them. I wish I could take tomorrow off, but I’ll be out of the office on Monday thanks to my treadmill stress test, so taking tomorrow off as well wouldn’t be a good thing.

Too much to do, as usual, and no time to get it all done.

channelling jimmy carter…

Oh, not in the diplomatic way, or in the building homes for Habitat for Humanity way (though I’ve done some work with them in the past) or even in a lust in my heart sort of way (though, you know, I have many times since puberty).

No, much like the country over which Carter presided when he spoke of a crisis in confidence, I’m feeling malaise.

All day I’ve tired and achy, with a bit of crankiness thrown in. Bones are too heavy to move. Mucsles think atrophy would be just peachy, swearing that vice-grips hold them in one place. Eyelids threaten to close. Brain wants to shut off and roll under the covers. People completely annoy the crap out of me.

Some moments I’m almost okay, but then a wave of malaise hits me anew, and I just want to crawl under my desk and curl up, waiting for it to go away and hoping I’ll feel better soon.

The timing is, of course, rotten, as I’ll be going to Tucson this weekend with HSTeacher. Sunday BestFriend and her family are having a naming ceremony for her new baby girl and HSTeacher and I will be driving there and back. It’ll be the first time we go on a trip together, so I’m excited. But I’m also feeling a little trepidation, as we’ll be driving fourteen hours round-trip and I am not a fan of long drives. I hope my crankiness clears up by the time we head out of L.A., else I will not be a fun traveling companion.

Of course I have tons of things to do tonight, but I lack the energy to do them. I wish I could take tomorrow off, but I’ll be out of the office on Monday thanks to my treadmill stress test, so taking tomorrow off as well wouldn’t be a good thing.

Too much to do, as usual, and no time to get it all done.

the fuck-memes meme

I’m a sucker for a good meme, but sometimes you just have to say, “Fuck memes.” Unapologetically stolen from Karl Elvis, who yanked it from Shoeless:

Reply to this post, and I’ll tell you one or two (maybe even three) reasons why I hate you.

Then put this in your own journal, and spread the hate.

I love all of you so much that I hate you for making me love you.

(Except you, HSTeacher. I love loving you. Especially tonight… *growl*)

the fuck-memes meme

I’m a sucker for a good meme, but sometimes you just have to say, “Fuck memes.” Unapologetically stolen from Karl Elvis, who yanked it from Shoeless:

Reply to this post, and I’ll tell you one or two (maybe even three) reasons why I hate you.

Then put this in your own journal, and spread the hate.

I love all of you so much that I hate you for making me love you.

(Except you, HSTeacher. I love loving you. Especially tonight… *growl*)