Monday, July 11, 2011

an update on the transatlantic life of emma norris.

“There may not be a Heaven, but there is a San Francisco.”
Ashleigh Brilliant.

“The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco.”
Mark Twain.

“If you're alive, you can't be bored in San Francisco. If you're not alive, San Francisco will bring you to life.”
William Saroyan.

So my American life isn’t very different from my Irish life. I’m still a weirdo who sweats too much and over-analyses everything and who, most days, wants to crawl under the bed sheets and stay there forever. There are pros and cons to being here. I’m loving the sunshine and the babysitting of the beautiful children and the craft fairs and the experience of being away from home in a completely new way.  But I haven’t seen my mother in over a month. I haven’t seen my own bed in over a month. I miss my friends. I miss my bedroom. I miss the familiarity of being at home, of being in my own home. And I understand Irish people. Me and Americans just don’t get each other.

I’m enjoying learning how to drive though, though it is a stressful endeavour. After getting my California Learner’s Permit, my brother took it upon himself to teach me how to operate a stick-shift. This ended in disaster every time. And usually in my tears as well. Pretty traumatic. But then my very gorgeous Yankee sister-in-law decided that it would be decidedly less traumatic for her to instruct me in the art of road rage etcetera. So far, she’s right. Our driving lessons have ended in giggles and jokes and rewards in the form of chocolate and wine (of which I am now a connoisseur). So I’m making progress. And it’s nice, actually. To find something that I can work at and improve on.

I’m still jobless but working on it. It’s okay though. I’m not wanting for anything. I’m wealthier than I was at home at any rate, so I can’t complain. I’ve been babysitting some gorgeous children who have made me so happy. And the money I have earned has been sent straight home to pay off my various debts, which seem never-ending. I’ve got a job interview on Wednesday though and I’m earnestly hoping that it will put an end to my pitiful financial status. But whatever happens, I am still awful with money: it burns a hole in my wallet, dying to be spent. (My last couple of dollars went on a lovely type-writer key necklace from Rag Trader Vintage at the Renegade Craft Fair yesterday. I’m broke now but it was worth it. I think.)

Something about this city makes me feel so fantastically creative. Simple things. Knitting. Friendship bracelets. Cupcakes. Love notes. Stationery. Photographs. Art galleries. Everything. I wish I had photos but I don’t. Darn it. No, that’s lies – I have photos from the Asian Art Museum, which I’ll post at a later date. Actually, speaking of photos, I had some amazing ones from the San Francisco Pride celebrations when I volunteered but, stupid Emma, I accidentally deleted them from my camera. I cried for about a half an hour.

I’m still spending my nights on the floor of the office on my oh-so-uncomfortable blow-up bed. Which is, I can only imagine, not nearly as fun as a blow-up doll. But I’m surviving. However, old age and neck pains are beginning to kick in and I’m longing for the time when I can actually sleep in a real bed and have actual storage space for my actual clothes – I’m still living out of an actual suitcase at the moment. My clothes are clean though and sometimes even ironed. So it could be worse.

I’ve got a busy schedule over the next couple of weeks: more babysitting, job-hunting, adventuring. Going to see Death Cab for Cutie in Los Angeles, as well as the San Francisco Outlands music festival, and also, hopefully, going to Wine Country to experience wine and camping and more American banter. I’ve also volunteered to help out at the SF AIDS Walk next Sunday: a 5.30 am start but all for a good cause. I’m all about the good causes lately – I don’t know what’s come over me!

In other news, I miss everyone dearly. I hope you all miss me too. I’m going now to write you all some sexy love-letters.

Comment on this post, please. Let me know you’re all still alive. (Unsure how to comment? Here’s how!)


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