Archive for September, 2009

Unemployment Top 10 List

Those of you who watch Dave Letterman are familiar with his nightly top 10 list. Every night he does a top 10 list making fun of something. Sometimes they’re funny, other times not so much. As I prepare for work in a little over a week, I want to remember all the good things about being unemployed. So here are the Top 1o things I will miss about being unemployed.
  1. My bi-weekly Teleserve calls filing my unemployment benefits where I answer the same questions week after week only to have Uncle Sam pay me a whopping $410/week!
  2. Paying $150/month for COBRA. (Thank God Obama passed the COBRA subsidy or I seriously would have been one of the million uninsured people in the country. Sad.)
  3. Drinking a glass (or three) of wine at 11:30am, 1:30pm or whenever I feel like it.
  4. Watching every possible TV show that comes on during the day. You name it, I’ve seen it.
  5. Being available to do whatever, whenever like spending days at the museums, attending morning tapings of The Judge Mathis show, standing in line at Hot Doug’s for two hours waiting for sausages Friday at 1pm, being available to tape the Black Eyed Peas group dance for The Oprah Show, kicking it hard four to five nights a week with my other laid off friends.
  6. Being told, “Your background looks great”, then two days later, “we’ve decided to move forward with another candidate”. Great.
  7. Attending my Movie Days when I go to the movies and watch three (sometimes four) movies in a day all for the price of one. I’m a rebel, I know!
  8. Hearing the surprise in people’s voices when I say that I’ve had a busy day.
  9. Having an active dating life because men actually liked the fact that I was homeless and jobless because it meant I had time. Who knew my stock would go up by simply losing my job?
  10. Getting crazy looks from people trying to understand my logic for traveling for three months when I had no job and then seeing that look turn to envy minutes later once they recognized my genius.

It’s just starting to sink in that my new found lifestyle is about to change. I guess I will have to mourn this loss like I did the loss of my job, but until then I have 10 days to rock on.

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Employed. Now what?

I knew this day would come, but it feels a bit anti-climatic. I got a job! Well, I haven’t started work yet, but I got an offer and accepted on Monday after a few weeks of debate.  At one point, I was not sure if I would accept the offer because of a few reasons. One being, that I didn’t think this was “amazing” enough. After being laid off for seven months and traveling to Europe and Africa for three, I was hoping for some epiphany or amazing opportunity. You know like you see in the movies. I’m eating lunch at a cafe in Madrid and a handsome guy approaches me. He joins me for lunch and we end up talking for hours. Turns out he’s the owner of a chain of hotels around the world and offers me a job as the VP of  Customer Connections where I’m responsible for evaluating the service level of all the hotels. I get to travel around the world, meet new people and stay at the finest hotels all while getting paid. Well, I woke up from that dream and realized that I liked this position enough to give it a try. I needed to stop standing still and move forward. It may or may not be the perfect opportunity, but I’ll never know if I continue to wait for something that may not come.

I apologize to anyone I haven’t told yet, but it has only been three days. I won’t mention the name of the company because this is not the place to do so. Similar to the way I never mentioned my former employer, I will not be discussing this one. I will say that I am transitioning from professional services/management consulting to industry. I’m curious to see how this goes. I start October 5th so I have a little over a week to live it up before I’m back to real life. Let’s just hope corporate life doesn’t turn me into the next Dwight Shrute on The Office.  See photo above. 😐

I guess I will have to update/change the name of this blog now that am no longer laid off. I’m a little sad about it as being employed isn’t as interesting as being “fun-employed”. Oh well, I did my part to help the economy and lower the unemployment rate. I imagine the name of this blog will continue to change as I continue to evolve. Hence, the Evolution of Tanisha.

Kenya videos: Circle of Life

Here are a few moments that I caught on video. I call these the circle of life.

Elephant saying hello.

A leopard killing baby warthog on nest. This was one of the most disturbing moments when a leopard found a baby warthog nest. After the mother warthog ran off, the leopard went to town killing the babies. I won’t go into details here, but those I have talked to have heard this story. So sad.

Cheetah killing baby impala. This was another crazy moment when a cheetah was killing a baby impala. The impala was alive the entire time until the cheetah finally suffocated it. Sigh.

Kenya pics

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Just call me Jungle Tanisha

Bush bathroom break with baboon passing by

Bush bathroom break with baboon passing by

Early morning hot air balloon ride

Early morning hot air balloon ride

Children in the Masai Village

Children in the Masai Village

Masai women

Masai women

Birding and Smiles

If there is something that makes someone smile, be open enough to learn about it. It might be the thing that comes to make you smile.
Lilac breasted roller

A funny thing happened on my safari in Kenya. I was introduced to the world of Birding. Clearly, I was unaware of how serious the sport of Birding was, because there were a few people on our trip who were more interested in seeing the birds than they were in seeing real (as I call them) animals. There were quite a few older people (75 and up) on the trip. One in particular was a fanatic Birder. Somehow I kept ending up in the same jeep as her which meant we had to stop and look at every single bird that we saw. You can imagine that there were thousands of birds and you can picture the look on my face everytime we had to stop to look at one. At one point, I was so fed up I wanted to scream, “F@*k the birds, I want to see some cats!”. Luckily, I was raised better than that and kept my thoughts to myself.  Eventually, I realized I was fighting a losing battle and decided that if I couldn’t beat ’em, I’d join ’em. So I started actually looking at the birds with the binoculars each time we stopped and grew to appreciate the birds. Some were pretty extraordinary and began to really enjoy it. I had to laugh at myself when one time I actually blurted out, “Stop! There’s a interesting looking bird”. Nancy (the Birder) couldn’t have been more thrilled that I was now enjoying birding. I started talking to her about her love for birding and learned that it brought her so much joy that she has traveled to many countries on birding trips. This is a woman who had lost her husband a few years ago, but always had a smile on her face. I then thought that I wish I could find something that made me as happy as birding made her. Well, I’m not officially a Birder, but I do appreciate the sport thanks to Nancy.  The lesson learned from this experience is: if there is something that makes someone smile, be open enough to learn about it. It might be the thing that comes to make you smile.

Here’s a pic of the lilac-breasted roller which was one of my favorites and one of the most beautiful we saw.

Back from Kenya, back to reality

I’m back from Kenya and things are getting back to “normal”. I am no longer homeless (moved back into my condo after subletting it for the summer) and no longer jobless (more to come in the next entry). I thought I would feel good about this, but it has taken some getting used to. First, moving back into my condo was weird. I didn’t feel completely comfortable and had mixed emotions about being back. Maybe because others had been in my place, but I’m slowly adjusting. Getting my mind around actually working is hard, but I am thankful to have an offer. I guess I’ll have to find a way to tell my sister and brother-in-law that I must turn down the nanny position they offered me.

All in all, things couldn’t have worked out better for me. I had the most amazing summer and have done things that I never could have guessed I would have done six months ago. Kenya was absolutely amazing and I have so many great shot of every animals you can imagine. We saw the Big Five, which are the five most difficult animals to hunt on foot in Africa. They are the Elephant, Lion, Cape Buffalo, Rhino, and Leopard. In addition to the Big Five, we saw Cheetahs, Zebras, Hyenas, Wildebeest, Impala, Tompson Gazelles, Baboons, Birds, Waterbucks, Hippos, Giraffes, Flamingo’s and more.