Saturday: Warren was still working on the brakes to my car, so I rented a car. The rental place inadvertently gave away the car they were supposed to give me, so for the price of a compact car I got an SUV (a Ford "Excite" -- we kept calling it the "Exczema" because we couldn't remember what it was called). I hit Costco, the Grocery Outlet, and the Savitzkys' party, toting a wedge of Ricotta Salata I'd picked up at the Grocery Outlet.
After a couple of hours I was wiped, so I went home so I could sleep and be "minty fresh" for Sunday.
Sunday: I was still recovering from the two all-nighters the past week at the Emergency Room and was drained. I barely made it through my shift energy-wise, but somehow I managed to file three reports instead of my required two. After work Warren talked me into having us go to "Millie's" (aka "Yat Sing II" in Redwood City) for pot-stickers and dinner.
Monday: I was awoken by a phone call from someone from what I'll call "Company #1." I thought this person had given up on me, but she wanted to know when she could do a telephone interview. Since Warren had an appointment with the neurologist in San Francisco, that pretty much precluded my doing it any other time than Right Now. I have no idea how I did other than my being brain-dead the whole time.
His trip to the Neurologist was horrid. Despite the normal blood sugar numbers and the normal treadmill test, the neurologist insisted on putting Warren on an anti-epileptic drug. Neither Warren nor I can see how that will fix his inability to learn and remember things or his frequent sharp head pains. We think he may be doing this because the neurosurgeon at UCSF said he'd only consider surgery if medication didn't work.
While Warren was going up to the office he insisted I "get [myself] something to eat." I didn't want to leave him alone, so I got a sandwich at the "deli" at the grocery store around the corner. The store itself is a good one, but unless you like turkey or ham (I detest both), the deli sucks rocks. The bologna sandwich I got layed on my stomach and made me nauseous. (Bologna is just about the only lunchmeat I'll eat.)
After the appointment we got dinner. Warren wanted to walk around afterwards, but I was cold and my tummy H-U-R-T. He snarled and snapped at me the whole drive home. He then griped on the phone to his mother who, God bless her, told him off about my stomach (she's had the same kind of problems and lost part of her stomach due to excessive acid).
While I was clutching my tummy, I was busy studying Company #3's development web site. I would have studied Company #2's site, but I had no idea what kind of products in its many divisions I would be writing about (Company #2 is B-I-G and multinational).
Tuesday: Last Friday I'd scheduled back-to-back on-site interviews for this day. Interview #1 was with "Company #2." I had no idea what kind of writing they wanted me to do. This would be a long-term contract and the pay would suck, but there's a slight chance I could get picked up (aka "Rent to Own"). The agency had unusually good benefits. They gave me an editing quiz on the spot (it was easy) and a writing test to take home (less easy because I didn't have access to the style guide referenced in the writing sample). They want someone with massively strong project management experience (I always fall into doing it, so I figure I must be good at it because folks keep wanting me to do it), but for the first time ever I'd be writing consumer-level documentation (hence the lower pay rate; writing developer documentation pays better). This interview ran 30 minutes overtime.
In between interviews, I rushed home to a) grab a bite to eat (I'm hypoglycemic, after all), b) finish printing and filling out the forms I needed for Interview #2 but which had only been sent to me just as I was leaving for Interview #1, and c) freshen up my make-up. The forms took overtime, causing me to be late to Interview #2 at Company #3. This didn't seem to matter much to Company #3 when I explained why I was late. I was interviewing for a very short-term contract, but the company is also looking for a permanent writer. When I told them I was interested in being permanent, they perked up.
After the interview I rushed home, changed out of the Job Interview Costume, and returned the rental beast. Warren's car was acting up again, so we took it to Sears to look at the electrical system (he'd just had a new battery installed). They found problems but couldn't tell whether it was the alternator or the regulator (he'd just put in new ones, too). While we waited for Sears, I got a burrito at a nearby taqueria. It was kind of heavy and greasy; I was underwhelmed, and my stomach didn't like it much. Warren refused to eat there because he doesn't consider burritos to be "food." (I won't eat some of the things he considers to be "food," so we're even.)
We hit an auto parts store for more components for the car and bought a torque wrench so he could try to finish my brakes. It turns out one of the bolts had been stripped and had somehow fused itself into its socket, so either he got it out or I'd have to pay for a shop.
Wednesday: I was woken up by one of the loan agents. There are problems with the refinance of my house. Grrrf. Next I was called by the recruiter for the job at Company #3 wanting to know how the interview went.
I called my auto shop to see if they could fix the car that day; they said yes. Warren put the FIGMObile back together so we could ferry it to the shop. While that was going on, the recruiter called back to tell me someone else from Company #3 wanted to interview me via telephone and wanted to know when I could do this. I told her it'd either have to be Wednesday afternoon or Thursday morning (appointments for Warren, his mother, and to a lesser extent me Thursday afternoon).
I was working on stuff for my One Last Contract, just trying to set up the work environment. While software was installing, I decided I wanted pizza, so I started making whole wheat pizza crust dough. Then it came time to pick up the FIGMObile. Warren went straight home, but I ran errands. First I hit the bread outlet (it's near the auto shop) to pick up some highly discounted organic corn meal that was on sale, then to an auto parts store that had sold us the wrong size brake pads so I could have credit back on my card to cover the repair.
After that I went to Big Lots and Albertson's to try to find replacements for the sugar-free cookies Warren had devoured. I didn't find the cookies at a reasonable price, but I found a few other bargains.
Next, I went home and made the pizza I was craving, along with a "standard" dinner of marinated chicken breast strips, homemade macaroni and cheese, and microwave-steamed broccoli and cauliflower. Warren didn't want any of the pizza, so I froze half of it. I had made it using a portable pizza oven Mom had given me a while back, and it worked way better than expected. The pizza crust was a little crispier than I'd have liked, but that's okay.
Thursday: Lady woke me up at 8:22am. I wasn't thrilled about this at first, but when my phone rang at 8:30am with the phone interview from Company #3, I was glad she'd done what she did. This makes me wonder if dogs have some kind of ESP....
After the phone interview I slowly got going, had my morning coffee and breakfast, hit my PO Box to see if my unemployment check had arrived (it hadn't), and went with Warren and his mother to Dr. Jane's in Berkeley with my computer in tow (the laptop unit, of course).
While Jane worked on The Chief (Warren's and Jane's nickname for his mother) and Warren, I sat in the waiting room, working on the computer. Just as I hit my breakpoint, Jane had time for me.
After the appointment Warren and The Chief decided I should hit some of my favorite shopping places up there. First we went to the Grocery Outlet, where I picked up some collard greens. Their frozen food section kicked ass, but we weren't going home anytime soon. Next we went to Berkeley Bowl. In both cases Warren and The Chief stayed in the car while I shopped. I picked up some pears for both of them (39 cents/pound rocks).
Next we were supposed to go to Emil Villa's for dinner (The Chief's favorite), but when we got there she wouldn't get out of the car. She was insisting Warren and I go in without her. Emil Villa's isn't my favorite place, and the only reason we were going was her, so we started going back home, only Warren was going the wrong way. I asked him where he was going and he threw a temper tantrum, finally pulling into a Safeway parking lot, storming out, and slamming the door behind him. I took over the driving, as both The Chief and I were shook up.
Eventually he came back with one of their sandwiches in tow (their "deli" sandwiches fall into the category of "things he considers 'food' that I won't touch"). I quickly got us onto the highway and into heavy traffic, which Warren abors and says The Chief also abhors, although she showed no sign of it. I was mostly trying to keep her calm after what he'd done.
We dropped her off, then shlepped back to my place. I got online and finished up the docs I'd been working on, then checked my e-mail and found a message saying something along the lines of, "If you're still available, can you come in for an interview tomorrow at 2pm?" I replied, "Yes, and yes." I also managed to reserve a ticket to the UK for 16 Tones for around $300.
Friday: I was woken up by an early morning call from one of my loan agents telling me he'd gotten my messages and that he was working on lining up something.
I got myself breakfast and coffee, showered, steamed and donned the Job Interview Costume, then drove to the interview with Company #4. I had worked with one of the seven programmers there at BroadVision, but I was struggling to remember him (but I think I faked it well). The interview ran 45 minutes. Afterwards I hit my PO Box to see whether the unemployment check had arrived (it hadn't). I then shlepped to Gilroy to get my long-overdue (due to having no car) allergy shots, got milk, then went home, changed, and went to HBFD for Thai food at my favorite place (Krung Thai). The gas reflux has gotten worse; my stomach distended two inches after dinner.
I went home, paid for my tickets, and collapsed.