Saturday, September 7, 2013

Living the Dream (almost)

Hard to believe all that's happened this year!  I've just spent the past few minutes reliving the last 8 months reading prior posts.  I arrived "temporarily" in Los Angeles on January 5th and moved here long-term on June 18th. WOW!

I will be honest, it has not been easy.  I miss my New England "peeps"... the impromptu meals around a table (or at the Stone House bar),  walks with Emmy at Hammonassett Beach, swimming at Chaffinch Island Park, the CitySeed Farmer's Market (where I actually know the vendors), and lately, "seasonality".  There's no Bishop's or Indian Neck  farmstand here to be able to pick up Silver Queen corn or warm, beefsteak tomatoes.  The clouds at sunset indicate that Fall is coming, but it's still 70 degrees when I wake up and only a bit cooler when I lay my head back down in the evening... I continue to adjust.

BUT, what is wonderful, is that I am working, in my field.  Months ago I met a very talented, kind, warm, generous, supportive person who was willing to talk with me about working in SoCal.  He made some good suggestions, offered up connections and was pretty amazing, for not knowing me!  Fast forward four months and I am now employed at Sapphire Laguna, in Laguna Beach, and the kind man is my boss, Chef Azmin Ghahreman.  I can honestly that I have never, in my life, respected a Chef as much as I do him... and it only makes me want to do better.  Chef Azmin has created an incredible team and culture at Sapphire... open, warm, welcoming, supportive.  I enjoy the people I work with and, after a few challenging weeks, feel as if I am starting to get the hang of it. "It" is being an Office Manager - supporting a team of culinary, restaurant and school managers through billing, payroll, ordering, organizing and anything else that needs to happen.  It's ALOT to learn - I am not a patient person (always wanting to get it right) and my brain has had to learn to think a bit differently - but I believe it is exactly where I am supposed to be at this very moment.

Located in Orange County, exactly 50 miles from where I live, with a view of the Pacific, it takes me at minimum an hour to travel each way (that's 500 miles a week).  I use the time to decompress, call friends and sing. (haha!) I work 5 days a week, unless there's a need to be there longer and average 10 hours a day.  This makes for a long week, but my body is adjusting and once I get back on firmer financial footing, I'll move closer... all part of the process.

Emmy now has a new pal in dog-walker, Garrett, who takes her out two nights a week for a long walk - providing me some flexibility to stay later at work if needed.

I spend Saturdays getting my ducks in a row, picking up a bit of food (I eat at least one meal a day at the Restaurant), going to the library, etc.  I'm trying to get in the habit of making Sundays, "sun" days at the Beach - and also like to try to see my family, (Dani and Hannah are growing so quickly!)  I've reconnected with LA friends, and have begun to make some new ones.

There are days when I can't believe that I am living here and others when I know I'm probably going to hate an 80-degree Christmas Day.  But life for me is about change and being open to adventure... and this is certainly all that, and  a bag of chips!

I guess you could call it "Living the Dream"... Cheers!

East Coast - Grass Island, Guilford, CT
Crystal Cove, Newport Beach, CA

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