Sunday, May 12, 2013

Feel-good factor

It's been a funny sort of weekend. My mood has run pretty much the whole gamut, which is unusual for me - I don't normally have much of a gamut. In my last year of university I'd sometimes wake up and feel I'd beat Agassi if we were to play in the final of Wimbledon. I don't mean thrash him - I'd have expected to go at least four sets - but I'd have still felt pretty good about the situation. That was a long time ago now, and I haven't felt like that since (nor did I ever feel like that in my earlier years at university).

I haven't been off the phone long. I talked to Julie for over an hour, or rather she talked to me. If you need your feel-good factor boosted, Julie isn't the best person for the job.

This morning I had walked to the top of Mt Victoria, down to Hataitai and back home through the tunnel. It was a fantastic day, and it's a great view from the summit of Mount Vic, seeing planes take off and land and boats out on the water. Being such a nice day there were heaps of other people wanting to do the same thing. I must make sure I go for a decent walk every weekend, pretty much rain or shine (the trips I go on with the tramping club don't happen all that often).

On Friday night I hardly slept so I didn't get up till ten yesterday. Ugh. I went to the market in the pouring rain, worked on my puzzles (that made me feel much better) and attended a meet-up group at the Ballroom (a pool hall on Courtenay Place). About a dozen showed up; we were quite a motley bunch. Also present, at the opposite end of the scale from our anxiety group, were a mob of rowdy beer-swilling 100-kilo-plus blokes, getting tanked up before watching the Warriors league game. After the pool, when I really felt like going home, we ate at a Mexican place on Cuba Street. I had a beef quesadilla. We sat at a table covered with marker-penned Spanish swearwords; I was surprised how many of them I recognised. After that we had a coffee at Espressoholic - that was probably my favourite part of the evening. I had an interesting chat with a woman who had emigrated from China two years ago.

At the back end of last week I struggled to concentrate at work. I also felt stupid because of the "mistakes" I made when entering data into what I think is an appallingly designed and totally counter-intuitive system. The best way I could describe the system would be to compare it to an online flight booking. Imagine you book a flight, you pay, you get one of those six-letter codes telling you that it's gone through fine, then you arrive at the airport and they won't let you on the plane because you entered your credit card expiry date with a dash instead of a slash. What really gets me is how some people find the system perfectly intuitive when I don't know if I'm Arthur or Martha. It's a recurring theme for me: ever since day one of my first job working for a large company, I've been trying to make sense of the nonsensical, and failing miserably.

I've signed up for another meet-up; on Thursday I'll be trying my hand at badminton. I don't think I've played since I was sixteen. I wasn't much good then (at least when they stopped me from serving overarm) and I don't expect to be any better this time, but it doesn't do you much harm to try these things.

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