Monday, June 04, 2007

Busy, busy, busy

I meant to get ahead on work this weekend, but that didn't happen. Well, it sort of happened. I wrote maybe half a page of notes on the document I was trying to finish reading and incorporated them into a final write-up this morning. That was something. I really don't like to work on the weekends. Perhaps I don't really like to work at all...however, when it's my own laziness that's causing me to miss deadlines, I will make a token effort to work on the weekend. And that's exactly what I did.

The trip to Ann Arbor went well. I had my usual nostalgic flashes, which I would write about except that I covered all that in my previous post on the topic last year.

On my way home, I talked to my "date" (who shall from now on be known as "Kenny") and made plans for Sunday. Yep, we were both too busy to do anything on Saturday. I had all that work to do--and the baseball game in the evening.

Once home on Friday, I received a series of texts from my buddy, PW. Drunk texting! I was flattered to be the object of such attention, non-romantic though it was. He emailed in the morning and we ended up going to Ikea together so I could return the comforter (mission accomplished, no questions asked). The Ikea trip took up a good chunk of the day and I needed to rest (or knit) a little when I got home. So much for working.

I wrote a whole angsty post about the "date" with the "ex" but now my take on the whole thing is "eh." We had a good time together. He wants to be friends. He doesn't realize that the reason he wants to be friends is that he likes the attention he gets from me. He likes being around someone who "likes" him. I don't want to be friends with him because we are never getting back together and spending time with him is seriously bittersweet. I got exactly what I wanted out of the evening, though: a pleasant time and the precise knowledge I needed to keep him out of my life. No more nostalgia on that end. Amusingly (?), Kenny called twice (to modify our Sunday plans) while I was out with the ex--once during the bike ride to the stadium and once during the bike ride home. I called him back after the second time.

On Sunday morning, I was in the mood for diner-fare and I got up early-ish and rode my bike to the neighborhood place. It was absolutely the worst food I've ever had there. I opted for the simple "two eggs and bacon" breakfast. Because the eggs are always slightly undercooked, I asked for them over medium. Not only were they not medium, the whites were still clear in places. The bacon was also underdone and the toast was buttered to within an inch of its life. Ugh. Besides all that, it is overpriced--$7+ for incorrectly cooked eggs and coffee. I'm never going there again. So sad. After, I went to another coffee shop and tried, again, to get my work reading done. I was mildly successful.

The last item on the agenda was to meet my friend, Katrin, who is visiting from Holland (she's here for work). We planned to meet at her hotel, walk to the mall and have dinner later. Kenny was going to meet us at the museum. Our plans were a little stymied by the constant mild/heavy rain, though she was prepared with a slicker and an umbrella (she's from Holland after all!). We had a pleasant time and it was cool that Kenny went out of his way to meet us. He only hung around for about an hour and a half before familial duty called. Makes me appreciate being rather far away from all of my immediate family.

The time with Katrin was nice but a little awkward. I'm friends with her because I've known her boyfriend since I was 21 and made a trip to Europe on my own after college. Piet and I met in a crowded room in a pensione in Barcelona. We were both there for about two weeks. After the first few days, where we got to know each other in a group context, we spent every day together. Every evening we'd go out for dinner, drinking or dancing. We became good friends and we've stayed in touch ever since. We used to write letters regularly, then email, and then nothing really. Even though we don't stay in as close contact as we used to, there is an understanding that we're still friends. Piet will always send me a post card from his summer travels or include me in group emails from the road (even when they were in Dutch!). When his daughter was born last year, I received a birth announcement. I've seen him a few times in the states--he came to visit me in Chapel Hill my first year there and stayed for a week (a looong time in CH). I've been to see him in Holland twice in the last ten years--and that's when I met Katrin. They were living together and I stayed with them for a couple of days on each visit. (I also spent time in Amsterdam on both trips.) Katrin and Piet were here in DC for several days about five years ago and they stayed with me. The most remarkable thing about that visit was the way they unselfconsciously gallivanted around my tiny studio apartment in their underwear. (No, she wasn't topless.) It was fun, though, and the three of us got along better than I expected. That is, I expected to get along with Piet, but I wasn't so sure about Katrin. Luckily, it worked out well.

However, Katrin and I still don't know each other very well. She's in DC for business for a few days and sent me an email about getting together last week. Oddly, Piet is coming to visit me next weekend. I guess she's going to New York after her business is done, meeting Piet, then going home. After she goes home, he'll come here and stay with me. I'm glad Katrin's not the jealous type! I admit, I'm looking forward to the alone-time with Piet. Not that we won't spend time with my friends, too. But the opportunity to have a long one-on-one conversation with him is rare. I'm also looking forward to seeing the baby pictures of his daughter, which Katrin didn't bring. Her words, "I'm a terrible mother!" I don't agree but it's funny not to carry a single picture of your kid. Piet is a big hobby photographer, though, so I figure she's left the photo-taking and carrying responsibilities to him.

It was a long weekend, that's for sure, full of emotional moments but a lot of calm ones too. I haven't talked about this much but I feel like I've made a lot of progress dealing with the bad-news men in my life. I'm seeing things with a clarity that I lacked in the past. You could argue it was foolish, for example, to get involved with Kansas even a tiny bit (I won't disagree), but the limits I put on my involvement with him and the way I got out--it was unusual for me. And with the ex this weekend--it felt like great progress. While I was with him, I was a little drawn in, but since waking up on Sunday morning I haven't been tempted to call or email--not even to explain why I don't want to be friends. I don't have anything left to say to him. And while I don't know what's going to happen with Kenny, I like him and I like that I'm not feeling anxious or rushed.What ever happens, happens, and I'm just enjoying the ride.

Grateful for: old friends.

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