Sunday, January 30, 2011

Project 52: Correspondances


The end of January is here. This month has been great so far. Many things happened and I learned a lot of lessons as well, profession-wise. On the darker side of things, I also foresaw some conflicts that might arise next month. Let us not dwell on the negative matters. 

This week, it has all been about postcard, mail and parcels. I have many swaps and tags on queue since December and I've been waiting for them to arrive since the start of the month. Add to that the packages I was expecting from (which is a prize from the Postcrossing forum lottery) and Book Depository. I feel stupid whenever I look back at myself a few weeks ago. I was making rounds, walking about our compound, secretly waiting for the mailman to arrive. I was impatient, also disregarding the unfortunate truth that international mail arrives at least 2-3 weeks after. Things come, when you least expect it. True enough for me, our house was flooded with mail the next week. 

If you ask me how many postcards and letters I've sent this month alone, I'll answer you with I didn't keep count. But if you really want to know, it's an estimate of between 35-50, 3 of which are letters. It is becoming quite an addiction. My grandparents are making it a topic at any conversation they're in, and starts with "We don't know why Pauline is receiving these postcards, and mind you, they're from different countries...". Even our mailman is boggled at the amount of mail that's arriving for one person. He must be thinking, wow this kid should get a life. The short-haired woman at the post office knows my face and whips out the latest philatelic stamps they have on-hand when I knock on their window. How neat (but at the same time unbelievable) is that? I think they (people from the post office included) should've figured out by now that I'm a postcard-slash-stamp collector. 

And this Monday, I'm going to the post office to drop another batch of postcards bound to Czech Republic, USA, and Netherlands. 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Project 52: Vital Signs and Admissions


Pauline Yu is a Nurse in training. She is 20 years old and wishes to get rid of procrastination. She is currently cherishing her 2 days in a week offs and spend it by sleeping through the day...
Today marks my first week as a nurse in training. The experience has been great so far. Once you get to know the work, you can do things easily. The thing with the ward I am in right now is that it usually has patients with the same diagnosis, medications and nursing actions. It is quite lax. Admissions and many patients could make the ward toxic but it can be managed quite easily once the team is together. The people at the station are really great to work with and you could easily get along with some of them. I know I'm saying too much for the first week knowing that I will be assigned here until the end of February. Much more things to come.

I find it fulfilling when I do a lot during the 8 hour shift, especially the hands-on care. The usual things to do are to remove IV and IC lines. The rest are paper works i.e. charting. It's a bummer we're not allowed to give IV meds. I really should apply for that IVT Training once the dates are announced. The work could get really tiring once you're not prepared for what is to come. I fail on completing my intended 8 hour sleep (because I'm a tad obsessive compulsive) and as a result, I look like a zombie the rest of the day. Oh, and I couldn't get rid of the massive black circles around my eyes, hello Taylor Momsen.

The heat and smell inside the ward is quite repulsive. But what do you expect with public hospitals and the OB ward? Smell of flowers (no pun intended) and air-conditioned spaces? Sadly, no. The heat that radiates from the ward is intense. When I come in during the 7-3 shift, the change in air is very noticeable. I am happy to say I am immune to the smell and I am quite used to it. It's a good thing we were exposed to places like these when we were still students.


Other things that were relevant this week: Mail Friday, and my loss of self-control, yet again.

I've come up with the term Mail Friday for the weekly arrival of my mails. I always sulked while waiting for my mail during the week since I was expecting the mailman to drop off anything that arrives for me on the same day. It seems that he chose Friday as a suitable day to deliver me the accumulated assortment of letters, postcards and parcel notices. Just this Friday, I received a bunch of postcards and letters from my swaps and my friend Sarah. It is also the first time I received a parcel notice. It has a written note that says: "Pls. pay P40.00 at W#2". I wonder if it really is 40 pesos only. Please, let it be the one from aka The Postcrossing Forum 5th Anniversary Lottery Prize.

Saturday morning, I received an e-mail notice which tells me two of my official Postcrossing postcards have arrived. It is only natural that I immediately click on the Request for an address button on the Send a postcard page. Here comes my obsession with refreshing the forum. I lost a little of my self-control when I saw great offers from people. I contacted them and fortunately, they do not seem interested with my cards. Probably because of the quality and the postcard itself. The postcard collector inside me decided to make room for some swaps and tags since I'm making a run to the post office this Monday. I cannot bring myself to add up the money I spent on post alone. Gah.


Since it's my off day today, I will go to sleep now.   

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Project 52: Maturity


While my little cousin studies for her exam, this is the week where I prepare myself for my entrance into the uncanny world of responsibilities and social relations. What more to do than spend my remaining free time on repeatedly doing stuff I like. I will never have this much free time once I dive into the world of adults. 

I was Celine's tutor for the week with a measly pay of meriendas from her mom. I wrote on postcards while she answered her assignments. I am so glad I never chose Education as my area of profession. Don't take this the wrong way. I love kids and their jolly nature, but when they start being unruly, I want to make them stay in the corner forever. Kids are so hard to teach. Celine is exceptional when it comes to English and Christian Living. We start fighting when it's time for Math.

One thing that kept me busy was refreshing the Postcrossing Forum. It also bore a large hole on my pocket. As ridiculous as it may sound, I am turning into an obsessive postcard collector. It's like that time I got addicted to Pet Society, only now I'm spending actual money. Would you believe I sent over 30 cards these past two weeks? I also spent around 300 pesos on sending mail. An enjoyable hobby. But it gets quite expensive when you really start getting into it. The only problem now is that some of the people I've sent to already received their postcards, I only got one from a trade and an official Postcrossing postcard. PhilPost, where are my postcards?

For preparations for the training, I went shopping for some essentials. Two white shoes (which are uncomfortable), 3 lady boxer shorts (which are useless to me right now) and 5 socks. I considered it as a semi-retail therapy. This one felt much better because I was buying things that I actually needed.

I spent so much this week that I decided to make a spreadsheet for my daily expenses. My mom told me it will get old for me soon, that I would put it off as a tiring obligation everyday. It may happen, but I'm proud of myself for coming up with something like this. It's kid's play for others, but I'm serious with this one. See I'm presenting it to you with a straight face. I made a special "miscellaneous" section for my mails and stamps expenses. I had a feeling that this hobby will stick with me for quite a while, so that's that. I really feel ridiculous for doing this, but I think it will help me control my expenses. 

I wrote this today, so there might be some confusion with the tenses. I really should start posting at the end of every week. I thought of keeping up with the Wednesday posting schedule for this project. But I realized it would be hard to write the content for the week that has already passed. It feels funny. Hence, the short entry. 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

To The Point of Being (Almost) Socially Awkward

I usually talk to my friend Yvette about my day. Events which are usually uninteresting. I love her for her patience with a basketcase like me. I feel sorry for her at times when I'm really frustrated, angry and when I think I'm terribly depressed. Last week, we had a talk about (my) past loves-slash-crushes and both of us mentioned the boy I supposedly had my first date with. Think poor man's Atom Araullo. Boy, did I fall for him. After hours of reminiscing, comparing which of my crushes was the better one and crying over spilled milk, we concluded that we should do better this year when it came to our social life and inexistent love life. She's slowly immersing into the single market and I'm stuck in my room listening to Ingrid Michaelson's break-up album while refreshing postcard forums.

Yvette said something along the lines of, "You are always awkward". I also blurted out something like, "OHMYGOD! I really am awkward!". This brings us to this post, To The Point of Being (Almost) Socially Awkward. How do people know what are the right things to say at the right time? I've had experiences with telling people interesting bits about my life where they look at me quizzically when I stop. It's as if they're still waiting for me to end my sentence, when in fact I already did. That forces me to say "Yeah, so that's it" and the awkward silence suddenly fills the air. 

Before the conversation Yvette and I had, I used to think I was awkward only with the people I had bad history with. By "people", I meant the ones who witnessed my embarrassing tirades in high school and the boys I innocently threw myself at. I was a high schooler, I really didn't know that my actions would dampen the spirits of future Pauline. Honestly, I'm laughing at how clueless I was back then. I probably am the most assuming person at that time. High school Pauline didn't know that players existed back then and that she was a victim of poor man's Atom Araullo's evil schemes to collect girls. After that, maturity happened and I will be forever known as one of the most straight-faced, boring people in college. I come to the conclusion that I am now very awkward. 

It would be a nice addition to my New Year's Resolution; Be less awkward. Look approachable. Try to break the ice. Believe me, this, for me, requires a lot of work. I'm terrible at actual conversations with people I barely know. Put 2 laptops in between us, open messenger, I think I'll do better. I'm a dubious person. I think people talk to me because they're trying to be nice to me. It might be because I don't feel well about myself. 

Hello, 2011. Let me be less awkward to people I talk to. 


This is a post (kind of) dedicated to Yvette who claims to have been my friend for almost 10 years now. Now I could genuinely use the phrase "We go way back" when I talk about you, without feeling like a creeper. Yvette, you are an amazing friend, for without you, I would be lost in the maze of young adulthood.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Project 52: The Start


This is the start of my Project 52, in which I will post a new photo every week. I have tried two successive Project 365s and failed to complete them two years in a row. This time, I'll strive hard to complete a less demanding project, along with my new career as a Nurse (finally!). 

I have started my year with "Read more books" on the top of my non-existent New Year's Resolution list. I am so proud of myself for having read 29 books last year (in which 8 are graphic novels). This is coming from a person who used to not like books without pictures on them. The only thing I would read back then was The Harry Potter series and it took me quite a while to finish The Sorcerer's Stone. That was 9 years ago. This is me trying to educate myself with the various works of fiction and to delve deeper into the human imagination-slash-emotion. 

I have also set a goal for myself, thanks to the Goodreads Reading Challenge. I set myself on reading 30 books this year and try posting reviews of them. Now, I am not a good writer. I have difficulties articulating myself. I have the vocabulary of a teenager in middle school who habitually use the words "awesome, amazing, spectacular, etc." I can't get pass that. So now, I'm trying to face my fear of making a fool out of myself through my future reviews, read more and expand my vocabulary. I forgot I was once a girl who wanted to become a movie critic.

Today, I finished my first book of 2011. Is is considered cheating if I already started reading the book last year? The page says otherwise.

Charles Yu's How to Live Safely in Science Fictional Universe is a fairly enjoyable read. What I really liked about this book is that despite of it's very scientific nature, it explores a lot about family relationships and it's dynamics. Another good thing about it is that it tells people the truth about time and memories. One particular quote that is quite fresh from my memory is this, "You don't have to worry, no matter how hard you try, you can't change the past." As far as cliche goes, I wish I could change the past is a phrase seen and heard everywhere, I bet you have uttered that word several times in challenging situations. Charles Yu, the time machine repairman, is the one who will tell you, "No you can't".