Monday, November 15, 2010

Keep trying

This is not a failure, folks.

It isn't even a setback.

It's merely a pit stop on the road to hell and I just caught air on the speed bump.

Yes, I got some downer news this morning. I checked my email and there was a quick note from my recruiter at Amazon.

Yes, that Amazon.

The department manager has decided to pursue other candidates for the position for which I had applied.

I was sad.

Oh hell, I got up from my desk at Shaw, went to the washroom and wept quietly for about five minutes.

Then I dried my tears, updated my Facebook status, sent out a handful of other crucial emails for those who aren't on the old FB and went about my day with a little bit of weight on my heart.

I received a lot 'aw' and 'sorry' responses.

Even a handful of #sadface.

But as the day went on, the weight lifted, my heart lightened and there was no #sadface.

Let's look at the bright side: I have a great job, writing web copy for Shaw Communications.

I was just aiming higher and looking for a little change of location.

Calgary, you see, has grown a little weary on me. I celebrated seven years of life in the YYC back in May. In fact, my mother emailed me on the 13th to let me know she still had a PostIt note on the fridge, saying 'Angela driving to Calgary today.'

I've been laid off, dumped three times, broken a hand, torn my rotator cuff, torn my labrum and been concussed a handful of times.

OK, they've all been my own damn fault ... with the exception of getting laid off. I hold that miserable PKP prick in Montreal mostly responsible for that.

Don't get me wrong. These seven years have been filled with a lot of wonderful memories and people.

But my vagabondish nature is starting to kick in again. It gets this way every once in a while and in the last few years, I've been able to subdue it with a trip to the mountains or little road trips to the smaller towns outside Calgary.

My thirst for adventure, however, has taken me to magical places. In the last year, I've traveled through Montana, Idaho and Washington State.

And every time I'm in Washington State, I want to stay a little bit longer.

Manito Park, Spokane

If I didn't have to come home on my last trip there, I wouldn't have.

'The States?!?!? Well, now we know she's gone off her rocker. We'll find a good temporary home for Shep and sent her off to Ponoka for a nice padded vacation.'

Oh, trust me. I never would have thought the States would be a destination of my liking ... Ottawa, Toronto ... maybe ... but the home of G-Dub and Sarah Palin?

Aye criminy! How the hell would me and my Maple Leaf tattoo fit in?

But I do.

The more time I spend in the PNW, the more I laugh at Canadian misconceptions of Americans ... and, by comparison, the remarkable self-loathing of Americans.

'You didn't want to have to deal with us asshole Americans anyway,' wrote one friend, although I know he was joking.

Well, half joking probably.

And we Canadians think we have patent or copyright or some weird ownership over politeness and being nice.

We don't.

Take for example a morning I spent at Manito Park in Spokane last month. Shep and I couldn't walk more than five or 10 minutes without being stopped by someone who wanted to talk.

Sometimes, it was to chat about the weather; sometimes, it was to talk about how beautiful my dog is; sometimes, it was to talk about my camera; and sometimes, it was to just say hello.

Yes, it happens in Calgary but more on the odd occasion than a regular occurrence.

My weekend in Spokane reminded me of home and Halifax or Newfoundland more than I can recall any night at the Trap & Gill.

And on the I-5 going into Seattle?

Well, when you put on your dinker-dinker (my dad's name for the signal light), the other drivers actually make room for you to merge lanes.

No, really, it's true.

I know you could never believe it unless you actually saw it. I damn near went into shock.

Just don't expect it to suddenly happen on the Deerfoot when you get back.

Calgary, I suppose, has grown too big and metropolisy for this smalltown girl who always wanted to live in a big city.

It's busy.

It's jammed.

And we're acting towards each other with far less consideration, respect and politeness than I ever thought possible.

Maybe a change of pace is necessary and with it, another career move.

This one 'no' won't deter me. Neither will the next one.

After all, I've already found another opening that suits my resume just fine.


  1. Thank you for putting into words some of the things about Calgary that drive me nuts. I left to go to school for 6 years and, when I came back, it wasn't the same city. It got too big, too fast and the attitude came with it.

    I just drove through Montana, Idaho, etc. for the very first time. I fell in love with Montana. I'm not sure I could ever live there, yet, but I'm definitely thinking some sort of cottage. We'll see. But the U.S. isn't out of the realm of possibilities for me in the future either (and it's easier for me to hop over the border than for most people, too). I know lots of Americans - they are amazing people. There are undesireable aspects about living in the U.S. of A., naturally, but you can say that about anywhere, really.

    Keep your head up. Better things are around the corner. That's what I keep telling myself, anyway.

  2. Heya darlin' - I just wrote about this post today... Thanks for sharing with us.