L in Berkeley
2015-07-10, 11:12 p.m.
(I have a shit ton of journal entries written this month and haven't gotten to posting them. Here comes the hardcore catchup.)
So on Friday I took the day off from work (yay!). L has been teaching a class at UC Berkeley this week and had one night to hang out before going back to England, where she is now working.
In the morning I went to the state fair on opening day--which was pretty quiet. I looked around at all the exhibits. For the record, I saw the winning knitting projects and...clearly this year's judge was biased 100% for tiny lacy sweaters. Maybe I'd have had a better shot with a different judge? Anyway, their new "small number of projects accepted" policy made the place look rather sad and empty. I asked the workers in the building if they knew anything about that and they said they didn't, but they agreed with me that it looked sad.
Update from the end of the month: my shrink said she felt the same way about the fair and left after a few hours like I did when she went. State fair officials, take note.
Ah well. In other news, they have a technology exhibit up this year that was pretty cool. I didn't end up buying anything other than food this time--the clothing booths, even my favorite one, didn't have anything I was specifically attached to (though they said they might get new stuff later). I was looking for another mini-backpack because my zipper is breaking on mine, but I didn't really like anything at the fair well enough to buy it. I ended up leaving about an hour earlier than I'd intended.
I went by the bookstore to get a couple of books and hit the Goodyear to get my tires re-inflated, because I stink at doing this myself. They had some kind of nice clip on the end of their hoses to hold it on, and I said to the guy that I wished they had those at gas stations. He said he hated those ones at gas stations, not only because they don't work well, but because they somehow get water into the air hoses. I also had him do the "code test" on my car and he thinks it needs a new thermostat....sigh. Something to worry about later. I think I am going to go to Goodyear for dealing with the smogging/engine light thing, especially since they are open on weekends. I didn't have time to start dealing with that drama, but it's good to know.
After that, I drove back to my town to get gas and hit the Ikeda's to pick up some of L's favorite fancy fig newtons (I know, I know, but she loves this kind), and then headed off to Berkeley. Which happily didn't have any issues--I swear I had more traffic in Sac than all the ay in there. I got situated in the parking garage and then eventually found her hotel, which is apparently the nicest boutique hotel in Berkeley. (UCB not only paid for her to come, paid for a TA, paid a good salary for the class, but put her up in a fancy hotel within walking distance of the college. Must be nice to be that joint, eh?) I walked in there and thought, "oh my god, they are not gonna let me just hang around in the lobby as some schlub on the street," but they didn't mind and I hung out in their little library section, picking up free reading. She eventually got out of class and we hung out in her room for a bit, talking about her job stuff and mine.
(For the record: I got a call while driving there about it, saying that something had come up and they won't decide until the end of next week. Very nice of her to do that, compared to oh, the police department.)
Anyway, the story of how she got the job in England was funny, mostly because she straight up didn't think she'd get it. Apparently if you interview in England they fly all the candidates out for two days, give every one of them a half hour to discuss their entire career/research/plans for the future, all have to have dinner together, got another half hour to do something else, and that was it. I'm all geez, I think I spent longer interviewing for clerical work than for a job moving to another country. So she figured she'd see a few plays and hit Stonehenge while she was at it, and then got the job! But she had another interview at Iowa State to go to first. And they were very dicey--said they wanted her Specialty A, so she talked about that, and then it turned out they wanted Specialty B, which she'd been told not to talk about...eventually she was all, fuck this, I already have a job offer with people who like me, TO ENGLAND!
So she has been working that stuff out, getting a visa, getting an apartment that will take her cat, finding out that to rent in England you have to have some English homeowner vouch for you and she doesn't know any...right now I guess they have negotiated that she pay six months' worth of rent in advance instead. Ooof. Anyway, she's barely landed an apartment before going to this teaching gig, and she's going to go back to her parents' place first and grab her stuff and then fly it over. The cat will move later. She'll be back in SF again around the beginning of September for another conference, so hopefully we can get together again then. I think I have theater tickets in Oakland that night anyway so I will be around. We'll see.
Anyway, we wandered around Shattuck for awhile, hit a few stores. I found a replacement backpack in a luggage store there, which worked out, and we went into a bar for a drink for awhile and then were all, "Hey, neither of us has eaten...this should be fun!" We eventually found a Thai restaurant and I had sangria (white sangria is delicious, as it turns out) and we had some crispy chicken and crispy pumpkin--it was like tempura but actually good. I was drunk enough to think that was the chicken for some reason and kept saying things like "I think they gave us the wrong food, but we can keep this, it's like, actually good tempura!" Hah. Then we crashed in her hotel room and watched Dazed and Confused. (Amazingly, the hotel had no issue with me showing up as well or even handing in the keys.)
I didn't sleep much....again....gah. When I did, I had some weird dreams like one in which Mom somehow walked into the hotel room and I kept thinking, "How'd she do that? We have both the keys!" I told L this when I woke up and she was all, "Yeah, I do that too and then I have a hard time figuring out what really happened." Anyway, she had to leave at the crack of dawn and left me to check out (since the room was paid for already, no big deal). I couldn't go back to sleep, so I mostly finished off the leftovers and read all the free reading. I checked out about nine and here I am now, finishing this.