Sunday, May 21, 2006

I'm Back...

I had a really good week on the whole it was great!!

I enjoyed having some company during the evenings. I met a lot of new people without working myself up in to a state that meant I actually enjoyed meeting them!

I received some really nice comments from the team I usually work with. One person said to me it was really nice to see me so relaxed and making new friends. I also had the feedback that I had done some really good networking.

I had two low points, Monday night I got really upset because I had a really good day, everyone had been so nice to me. I was in the pub Monday night but I was quite tired. One of the girls said they wanted to go in about 5 mins and I said I would go back to the hotel with her. I had changed my mind, but I thought she was waiting for me so I got up to go but she changed her mind and said she was going to stay longer. I felt I still had to go so I left. I went back to the Hotel, changed my shoes and then wondered around. It was a nice evening. I got upset that I had no friends at home, everyone was being nice to me there and I cried about how crap my life was!!

Tuesday was good; I finished work early and went shopping with someone I work with in the UK. We then went out for dinner; we met some German guys from our team and went with them. The restaurant I chose turned out to be really crap. I felt responsible :o(. And then to top things off they bought the bill and I expected one of the German guys to pay as company policy for expenses is the most senior person pays. He obviously did not want to and I put him on the spot. I felt really bad :o(.

Wednesday evening I got myself in a mess. We had a banquet for a few hundred people. Because of conversations in the past about being there to network and make connections I felt I could not sit with the people I know and feel comfortable with. I made the effort to sit with people I did not know. I made some polite conversation. All the people I would have liked to sit with sat together. Towards the end of the evening they all got up and were singing as the entertainment was a game of Pop Idol with three judges. Everyone was having great fun and I wanted to join in. I did not know how but it is the kind of thing I really wish I could do.

I decided to go back to the Hotel quite early as I was feeling very left out. It was pouring hard but I did not want to ask for a taxi for such a short distance and I do not mind the rain. Unfortunately I did not ask for directions as I though the porters would judge me and think me weird for walking in the rain. I got very lost, I walked a couple of blocks, I asked someone for directions but they obviously did not know where as they told me wrong. I ended up back where I started. My hair was dripping and there was a thunderstorm. I decided to ask the porter for a taxi and finally got back to the hotel.

The hotel room was massive, I felt invaded by the house keeping staff coming in and I was upset that I could not join in the with the entertainment. I sat in the wardrobe, closed the door and cried for about 20 minutes. I felt safer in the wardrobe and less anxious, it was easier to calm down in a small private space.

I used to sit in the wardrobe and when I was a child and we had guests. I had to give up my bedroom for the guests so I did not have any private space. I had to stay in the living room with my Mum and her friends until bedtime and then I slept in my parent’s room. It got too much and I was crying that I wanted my bedroom back. My Mum was telling me off for being a spoilt brat so I ran upstairs and hid in the wardrobe, I felt private there and I felt comfortable. It was a similar feeling then.

Thursday and Friday went really well. I made lots of good contacts for work and I felt more comfortable with my European colleagues.

I left Indy on Friday; our flight from Indy to Chicago was delayed so we had less than an hour until the departure time of the flight to London. We had to change terminal, check in and get to the departure gate. We ran across the airport and just made it to the gate in time. We got chatting about fitness levels and stuff and said I should play in the interdepartmental football team this summer. I said I might do. I played a few years ago but I felt so anxious about doing something wrong and letting the team down it was more torturous than fun. I hope they ask me when they get the team together as it is something I would really like to do!

Work wise the week went really really well, and I am very pleased with myself for little things like shaking everybody’s hand when I met them, not sitting in the hotel on my own in the evenings and making new contacts with people who do similar jobs as me from around the world!! I had a really good week!

I loved the mid west, for all the space, no over crowding, enough lifts in the Hotel not to have to queue and the friendliness of everyone I came across. I let a shop assistant helped me choose some jeans in GAP. I really enjoyed the service, I told my best friend about this yesterday and said I would usually run away, she just said I know you do!

I felt a bit down yesterday, the two people I was travelling with were met from the airport by their boy friend and girl friend both with gifts and hugs. I was met by a miserable taxi driver who complained about how long it took me from landing to getting out of the airport!!! I miss US service :o)


Raine said...

You know it sounds like you had quite an adventure!!! You SHOULD be proud of yourself. You went to a whole different country and socialized with people from all the world. That is HUGE!!! There were some little disappointments and uncomfortable moments but I think that is probably fairly normal. I think you were awesome!! I dont think I could have done it. pat yourself on the back girl. You did great!!!

Sage said...

Super job, Annie. i think you did very well even considering your trepidation. We yanks can be friemdly too, can't we?