Saturday, November 26, 2005

the apprentice (aka boardroom hell)

It's been a while and I thought it's about time for another update, although a shorter one (?) this time around.

You may have noticed in my last posting that I didn't talk too much about work so I thought that this would be the focus now that the days are growing shorter and darker. First of all, we have the a firm Extreme Makeover Edition happening here. So all floors are slowly being renovated and each floor rotates through the swing floor. It's our floor's lucky turn.

We moved from 45 up to 51 at the beginning of the month. You wouldn't believe what a difference a few floors makes in terms of waiting for the elevator!! With the time change, it's pretty much dark when I leave work...but really, it doesn't matter so much and I don't really notice because I am stuck in a windowless BOARDROOM with 7 other people. So it's pretty much dark all day long anyway. There are spot lights though to add to the ambience and coziness of the room... and we're here til mid December. This marks the halfway point of our stay in purgatory. 3 more weeks to go.

The other thing I have to say is that people here are workaholics...we had to work on Remembrance Day... yes, hard to believe...but apparently school's on but banks and government offices are closed. Makes working a little bit odd when you're trying to contact someone at the ministry(!).

In terms of sightseeing, things have slowed down a bit. I've gone to the outskirts/suburbs - Markham, where there is the largest Chinese Shopping mall in North America. There are over 400 shops/stalls selling retail goods. It was SOOO nice to get a bit of "Richmond" here since I lack that downtown. Also made a trip out to Richmond Hill. Yes, Chinatown is close by but not quite the same as being in a squeaky clean (and warm) indoor mall. I've also had some friends out here visiting for various reasons so I've been lucky to have a piece of home here temporary as it was.

I've gone to a taping of CBC's Royal Air Farce - hilarious and it was their opening show for the season so that was quite nice. I also met Nelofer Pazira, star of the foreign film Khandahar. She was lovely in person. Other film entertainment: a trip to the movies and saw Wallace and Gromit in the Curse of the Were-Rabbits. Funny movie but then again, I do love W&G. Also went to the Art Gallery of Ontario where they are showing Catherine the Great artifacts.

Been keeping busy as well with my second photography course that unfortunately requires getting up early on the weekends! *sigh* But this course is much better than the last one I took so I'm happy about that. This one requires field trips so we've gone to a few locations downtown to shoot the architecture of buildings amongst other things.

autumn in high parkSeems that things have changed so swiftly - one weekend was a trek out to High Park to see the fall colours that were on the leaves that were still clinging dearly for life on the trees, and in the blink of an eye we're in the middle of winter. We were due for our first winter storm last night with accumulations anywhere from 5-10 cm but it didn't quite materialize (only about 2 cm.) The temperature has dropped quite a bit with highs of 0 but I'm still being braving it out in the cold; my walks in the mornings have sort of turned into semi-jogs into work. Yesterday morning was a brisk -5 but not too bad when there's no wind. (I'm not quite sure why Chicago lays claim to being the windy city as it's pretty windy out here too!) We'll see how long I last before I join the hordes underground. It's still snowing as I write...

It'll be a month til I'm back home so I hope to see most of you then! Do drop me a line, even if it's a short one! Hope you are well and please keep me posted on what's going on! Even a short email helps shorten the distance between east and west so please write or post a comment!