Monday, September 21, 2015


I never knew what exhaustion was until this weekend. I had four shifts rostered over a short period of time (less than 48 hours) - Saturday afternoon, Sunday morning & afternoon, and super early monday. And 3 of those shifts were extended with no warning because of delays, cancellations and sick workmates. I was so exhausted that the only reason I went on Monday was because I thought it would only be for four hours, unfortunately someone called in sick so I was asked to extend my hours. Initially I did not want to (at all) I felt like a zombie, my eyes were heavy and sore, I couldn't think properly, and trying to deal with people seemed like too massive an effort to do anything. I have never been so tired in my life.

On top of the excessive number of shifts was my weird insomnia, which pops up on an occasional basis. It shows up on a random basis, and I have not been able to figure out a reason for it, though I have many theories, including magnesium deficiency, or stress but it is usually that I will go to sleep with no problem and then wake up in the early hours of morning, tired, but unable to return to sleep. I have tried lavender oil (that helped somewhat - I still woke early but felt more rested when I had to get out of bed and less zombie-like), as well as magnesium spray, exercise during the day, cutting out chocolate, not much helped.

According to the Chinese body clock, 1-3am is the time for the liver to be most active, and 3-5am is the time for the lungs. I'm not sure if I'm awake because my liver has an excessive amount of work to do - but you would think in that case that my body would most likely want me unconscious, not awake and fidgety.

Saturday night I went to bed at 9pm as I had to get up at 5am - this should have given me a lovely 8 hours sleep, except that I woke up at 2am and couldn't get back to sleep for 3 hours. And no point trying to have a nap during the day - well I did try it, I couldn't sleep. It was only slightly restful, probably because I had set my alarm for 30 minutes before I had to get up and go again. So the second night I decided to go to bed at 7pm, in the hopes that even if I woke at 2am, I would still have had 7 good hours sleep. However, when I woke up and checked the time it was only 11:40pm and I was awake the rest of the night until 3:30am when my alarm went off.

I'm still exhausted even though its Tuesday. I went to bed at 8pm last night and woke at 1:30pm, but surprisingly felt much better than yesterday. I still had to get up at 4am for work though. I was complaining to people about it at work, but some of my workmates also have crazy numbers of early shifts and late shifts, so there is very little sympathy, but at least they all get it. It did turn into a little bit of a "Who's got it harder" session though. I truly believe this is the reason why there is so much sickness going around at the moment - because people are not coping with the insanity of so many mixed up shifts.

It used to be that you would have a few early shifts, then a few late shifts, then days off. But lately its more like 7 earlies 1 late, or early, late, early, early, late, late, early. Or what I had over the weekend, late shift, then a split shift, then a super early shift, followed by two more very early long shifts - that doesn't help either - coz you just can't get proper rest because you have to get up early the next morning as well. I really hope the next roster is better than this one, because I feel like I'm dying right now.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Anger Management at the Gym

So its been 3 months since I joined a gym, I signed up not long after I got back from Europe, feeling like I needed to do something for myself. I was going for a while feeling like I wasn't making much progress & just kind of mucking around, having fun, so I finally got up the nerve to go talk to the manager about how I was feeling - there are lots of personal trainers there, but they're all guys, and I feel a bit intimidated by them, but the manager is female, so I felt more comfortable talking to her, even though she did look a bit bewildered when I asked to talk to her. So she set me up a second personal trainer session - which was excellent. He gave me a really hard workout, which was good, and the next day my muscles felt very sore and achey, which is just what I wanted. Since then I've been bouncing back and forth between the first and second workouts I was given, doing whatever I feel like on the day and including parts of both.

But one thing I've added myself which I'm really liking is I borrowed some boxing gloves off a friend & have been having a great time laying into the punching bag at the gym. Its really good as an anger management tool, I think, it always makes me feel greatly relieved by the end of it, especially if I visualise whoever has been annoying me lately on the punching bag and me hitting their face, lol. Not that I would ever hit a person in real life, but it does great relief to my feelings to hit the punching bag instead. I highly recommend it. Get your own gloves though, coz you don't know whos been sweating into the gym ones.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Swift changes

Well its been a while since I wrote on here, but it feels like a lot has happened in a very short time & I'm a little stunned & astonished by how quickly change has come upon me (unsought and unasked for). I had sort of a timeline in my head that I thought I was going to follow along with quite nicely, plodding along, but all of a sudden it feels like a dozen waves have crashed over my head, sucking me out of what I thought was going to happen and pulling me along according to their own little timeline.

I had a good talk to a friend today who helped me see things in perspective, it was almost like she knew what was about to happen.

She said that for me the way I grow and change and learn, is to have lots of different experiences in lots of different places. Ever since she has known me, I keep shifting from place to place, or changing jobs, or changing my life completely and moving around. Whereas for the past several years I've been in one place, and one job and I've gotten very comfortable and happy, and in a routine, and I like the way things are, so that when I get told to move on to the next thing, I don't want to, because I'm very happy where I am, thank you very much, and I see no reason why things shouldn't carry on exactly as they are, indefinately. She said but thats not the way for me to grow, that I should embrace the change and just go with it.

She said its like when you learn to surf and you don't know if you want to go in the water, its quite scary and daunting and you're not sure if you can paddle hard enough to catch the wave, and then you're there in the water, waiting for the wave that you're going to catch, you don't know which one it is so you keep waiting and looking, but then when you finally do, you catch it, and you feel exhilarated. You look over and all your friends & family are on the beach cheering you on, and then you're really happy that you took the plunge and did it. She said later I will look back and wonder how things would've been different if I hadn't done it, but that I will be so glad that I did.

She also said she would slap me if I didn't do it, lol. While she was talking I almost got the impression that things were not going to go according to the schedule that I wanted, they were going to happen much faster.

When I got home, I got some news, and yes, things are happening much faster than I imagined. Its quite scary but I think I just have to take a deep breath and go with it. Wowsa.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Sick Day

I loved being on holiday but coming home to winter is really not so much fun. Fog and wind and rain and all of it - have combined to make me a sick lady. Yesterday and the day before I just sucked it up and kept going - probably not the best idea, coz I don't want to make my workmates sick - but I was actually feeling ok. So this morning I suppose my body just decided it had had enough of my attempts to push through it, I've had all sorts of uncomfortable symptoms that I won't discuss just on the off chance that someone ever actually happens to decide to read this. This morning when I called in to work my workmate didn't even recognize me, she said I sounded like I had a frog in my throat, so obviously I wasn't going to be going in today. But not doing anything really doesn't sit well with me. I tried not to clean and just to rest but my room is so disgusting (and I heard a mouse in my room the other night, he kept me awake nibbling at something all night, I wanted to shoot him but I suspected he was hiding behind my bookshelves), that I had to at least get the stuff off my floor that was annoying me.

Other than that I have surprised myself. I have not gone out all day, despite the temptation to. I watched a movie and I read a book and I had a citrus based smoothie that I'm hoping will give me a helpful added shot of Vitamin C. But it really is boring being sick. I don't know what to do because I feel a strong need to keep myself busy, even though I really should be resting. I'm hoping tomorrow I will be feeling well enough to go back.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Happy to be Home

I love going away on holidays, but I love coming home as well. Its the familiarity of it, seeing things that are mine. Sleeping in my own bed and not in a hotel that hundreds of others have stayed in before. Driving my own car (though that was a bit weird after 5 weeks of being away). The loveliness of hearing from people how much they enjoyed my emails about my trip and seeing my photos (and living vicariously through my own adventures). Seeing all my things as they were when I left them (apart from the mouse who has newly entered my room and the damp spots that have appeared on my carpet). Still trying to recuperate from jetlag while still going back to work, organizing my life and doing all the chores one needs to do on a regular basis (laundry, cleaning, groceries all being at the top of my list). Haven't had a chance to catch up with anybody yet, but that will be the next thing to do, once I've gotten back to a proper sleeping pattern and this strange red rash on my lower legs has gone. I have yet to sort through my thousands of photos (literally thousands, I went a bit snap happy). Well, the last time I was in Europe, I only had a film camera, 24 shots and no chance of checking up on them until the roll has been developed, so this time around I just wanted to capture every little thing. You can always delete a wobbly or blurry photo, but you can't get back what you never took in the first place.

Gonna give myself a few months to unwind and settle down before I start planning my next trip - definately want to make it something exciting next time.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

In the lovely Amsterdam

It has been a good few days. On Thursday we got the Eurostar to Brussels, Belgium, only stayed there one night but it was good. We went to Mini Europe this place with 1:25 ratio miniatures of lots of different places in Europe including places in Paris and London we'd been to not long before, and Athens too. In the afternoon had great difficulty finding our hotel, even the girl at the tourism office had no clue where it was. We went where she sent us and it was the wrong place, some nice lady told us to go down the road, had to ask a number of people before we finally got there, very tiring and frustrating. It was ok though. Had a rest then went to town on metro thru dodgy part of town (obviously I didn't know it was dodgy before I went there) good thing it wasn't late at night. Went to see Mannekin Pis this cute little boy statue peeing and the Grand Place Brussels main square which is amazing, very cool buildings and huge! I also got to try a delicious Belgium waffle, and later after a runin with a nice aussie couple, some delicious fries. That was all my plans for the evening as we had a 6:20 train the next day to Amsterdam.

Amsterdam is lovely. I got a city pass which allows me to go lots of places for free so have spent all of yesterday and today cramming in as much as possible. Yesterday went on a canal cruise and to the Museum of purses and handbags. Today went to the Royal Zoo, the Dutch resistance museum, Oude Kerk (old church) which was unbeknownst to me in the middl eof the red light district. Oops. Then the Nieuw kerk (new church) which is 600yrs old, where they're hosting the world press competition of the year winning entries, some very moving and emotional ones. Next went to Stedelik museum of Modern art I don't know who Matisse was but they have a exhibition of his work. Then Van Gogh museum where I learnt more about this man I'd only vaguely heard of as the one who cut off his ear and painted sunflowers. After that stopped by this park with a big I AMSTERDAM sign its quite famous, tried to photograph it but too many people in the way.

Went to the Tulip museum its very cute, It was close to Anne Frank House which I wanted to go to but did't for 2 reasons, the queue was massive and I didn't have enough money. Trying to avoid having to draw more cash since we're leaving tomorrow, haven't quite figured out how I'm getting to the hotel. As long as I can get to the airport I'm all good as theres a free shuttle from there, but this morning after I'd bought a ticket on the train I found out all the airport trains were cancelled today due to some kind of maintenance work. So we had to get a bus partway then hop on the train.

I had an interesting experience on the train where I was chatting to this nice girl I'd just met, American but lives in Ghana and was here for an 8hr stopover, didn't get her name, coz then this black man gets up and starts screaming at us in dutch. We had no idea what he was saying except for the word 'blah blah' which I gathered to mean he was angry that we were talking. At one point he made a gun motion towards us which I gathered to mean he was threatening to shoot us. After screaming at us (I assumed for talking on the train) for about 5mins he collapsed in his seat but continued to yell. I looked at the girl and mouthed to her I have no idea what he was saying, she nodded, followed by I think hes crazy, she nodded again. I didn't feel comfortable in the train, nobody had said anything to him even the ones who definatley would have understood what he was saying. One guy had stood up partway through and I thought he was going to talk but he didn't.

I went out to the back and started randomly talking to this girl who had just watched the whole thing. Another guy goes to me its coz you're a kiwi, it was a kiwi attack. I assume he was aussie though I wasn't paying attention. Then the guy who'd stood up came out so I asked him what it was about, he said the guy was drunk and hungover from a party last night and he was mad that everyone was talking so loud.

Well I don't know why he chose to take it out on us then, coz he was pointedly talking to us, and its rather hypocritical scolding people talking at a low volume then screaming at everyone for 5mins so everyone on the train can hear you. It was an eventful morning, and I was glad to get to the city in one piece.

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Loving London

Yesterday, I got to see the Queen!!! I was quite excited about that, since I was just there to see the Changing of the Guard at 11:30am but I was told to arrive early. When I arrived there were masses of people all lining the road from Buckingham Palace, I didnt have a clue what was going on, lots of cops everywhere too. People about 4 deep back, I tried to find a spot with some shorter people so I could look over their heads (sometimes it helps to be tall-ish). And then a bunch of cavalry went by and then next thing you know theres a beautiful carriage with Prince Philip and a lady on the other side, I sort of glimpsed her but not properly, then some more carriages but not as fancy, then Princess Anne. Not sure who else was in there but it was quite exciting.

Found out later it was for the Opening of Parliament and the Queens speech. We found out from the cop she was coming back in about an hour so I waited out in the sun for probably an hour and a half to get a look at her coming back on my side. Heaps of people left during that time so I got right up to the railing. It was funny coz I spent nearly the whole time listen to this aussie lady growl her husband about missing the shot when the Queen went past and about how she had to have a photo of the queen if she was gonna be in London. So about an hour later she went past and I got quite a good photo of her and her carriage though u can barely make her out. I was really happy when I walked off then I heard someone say Prince Charles was going up (but a few mins later) but I guess Im not that fussed about seeing him. I was so elated I ended up giving money to a strange little old english lady who said she was collecting For the Children, so after I walked away I got thinking that doesn't sound like any charity Ive ever heard. Oh well it was a good day. Off to Brussels today then Amsterdam tomorrow then fly home sunday.