The Week

Sorry I haven’t posted in a bit. There are just some weeks you’d rather have the ability to call a do-over.

While scheduled to take Monday and Tuesday as vacation days, I promised I’d check the office e-mail to make sure things were running on smoothly on my books. One in particular is due to close this week and there were still pieces missing that were due. Anyway, I checked in on Sunday and discovered two e-mails from colleagues pointing out glaring errors in just-released titles which sent my spirits and eel of self-worth crashing. You can imagine the loss of sleep, preoccupation with reviewing how things went awry and how to improve my personal systems to prevent things from repeating (I’ll say this; I have made mistakes at DC, but none twice.)

As a result, I was really in a bit of a fog the next two days, so even though I got all the wrapping of Christmas gifts and out-of-state shipping of same done, I wasn’t in the least bit feeling the holiday spirit. Fortunately, I shook off those feelings long enough to remain sharp at the Finance Committee meeting Monday night.

When I got to work Wednesday, that feeling really hadn’t let go and for the remainder of the week, I pretty much sat at my desk, concentrating on the work ahead of me, waiting for the slap on the wrist or the yelling or whatever. I’m still waiting, which only adds to the anxiety. Fortunately, my boss has been understanding and supportive of human error, and most of our conversations this week had been forward thinking.

Still, as Thursday wore on, I still wasn’t feeling festive or socialable so I finally chose to blow off a holiday party I had been looking forward to. Instead, I worked a bit late, then made some stops for additional presents we needed. One of those stops was at Best Buy where I had ordered something as a joint gift to the kids.

Friday, I arrived at work to find a voice mail from Best Buy indicating I had only picked up part of the order. I should stop by today and get the rest of it. OK, things happen, as if I didn’t already know. As the day wore on, I was starting to feel some of the frustration at myself start to dissipate. Deb also informed me that friends in town had invited to join them and their kids at “the club” for the annual holiday sing-a-long dinner. But it meant trying to get home a little early to change.

As I valiantly left work before 5 to catch the 5:23, I found myself standing in line at Best Buy. Finally, the sales woman from the night before took care of me, gave me the rest of the order – which upon examination proved I had gotten the wrong thing which meant I needed to reunite the order and return it – but by then, the train had left. So, I had to have Robbie leave his own party, to collect Deb while I took the following train.

At 7:15, we walked into the club, a mere 45 minutes late; but seeing the decorations, hearing the wonderful pianist effortlessly work his way through the holiday standards and everyone enjoying themselves, I was finally starting to feel better about the world. The food was sumptuous. We chatted with Caroline and Allison, whom we haven’t seen in a while, and discovered them possessed with wit and personality which made the evening nicer. When it was time to start singing carols, we all joined in. For the grand finale, each table was assigned one of the twelve days of Christmas. We were day three, you know, the French hens. I wondered aloud if we should be calling them “freedom” hens which got a laugh from one of the girls. As each table sang their part, most stood and acted in some way to represent the day. While the other three stood and flapped their arms like the dreaded “chicken dance,” the girls and I sat and simply sang. Still, everyone was feeling the spirit. Even me.

It feels things have turned a bit, for the better. Saturday, I discovered I lost a little weight, toured one of the middle schools which was the subject of a funding request to be voted on this week, and then enjoyed a two hour seminar about Parliamentary Procedure (most role playing to a script to walk us through the process rather than a dry lecture). And best of all, Kate came home. We get to enjoy her for four weeks and she was as happy to return. Last night we took in Narnia which they had read, and I had not, and it was a very entertaining night out. The CGI was terrific, Tilda Swinton was wonderful as the heavy once more, but I think the pacing needed some work. It definitely dragged in spots. And more Jim Broadbent was needed. You don’t hire someone of his skills and then barley use him.

Anyway, that’s what’s been going on.