TALK TUESDAY: Learning to Drive

Yes.  That title is correct.  I am now learning to drive.

Given that my workplace is about 17 miles away from our house, it has become evident that I have no other choice but learn to drive.  For a while, I braved it out, commuting and enjoying the scheduled service of NJ Transit buses.  But after some time, the Husband just made me admit it:  you have to learn to drive.

So I went to the local DMV and took the test… and failed.  HAHAHAHA.  That has to be one of the funniest curve balls ever.  I studied so hard for the test that I became too confident and too doubtful of what I’ve learned.  Second time did it for me though, and since then, the Husband has just been breathing down my neck, making sure I look before I switch and turn, reminding me to turn my lights on, and signaling me to slow down before approaching a wide curve.

I have to admit though, it has been very challenging to listen to instruction.  I don’t mean that I do not like following the Husband’s instructions; it’s just hard for me to accept that this is something I do not know.  For every deep breath he takes, I automatically think that I did something disappointing.  Every time I notice him grip his seat a little tighter, my head goes “what did I do wrong now” almost immediately.  The moment I think I’m doing well, I screw something up.  And not just something minor.  It’s in the levels of stopping inside an intersection box height of screwing something up.

With my work having summer hours every Friday, I have to take Lyft or Uber to get home (since the bus has limited service in our area).  I take that opportunity to ask about how they learned how to drive.  Then I tell them it doesn’t make sense to me that I can make a perfect left turn and cannot make a right turn to save my life.  They will tell me to line up my rear lights with the other cars front lights when parallel parking.  They will tell me when in doubt, stay on the right.  And there is always one lesson that these drivers have told me over and over:  it takes time.

That…. is a hard lesson to learn.  For someone who always wants to finish first, I constantly pray for the patience I need to just learn to drive.  The roads won’t always be a friend, the streets will always be too narrow, there will always be people crossing.  The sooner I accept that, maybe the sooner I can adhere to the rules of the road.

Well… time will tell right?  Until then, I have to bear with these stickers all over my bumper.

Student Driver

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To the World Florist Association

Dear World Florist Association,

Some 7 or 8 years ago, I broke off a relationship for reasons I now do not understand.  That same person found his way back to me and we have been very blessed since.  He has calmed me, kept me composed, given me peace when I needed it the most, and tamed my potty mouth. His “level-headedness” is something I do my best to imitate.  He is quite an admirable man.

Imagine my giddiness when, three days before Valentine’s Day, he not-so-subtly checked if I will be in the office all day because something “may or may not arrive between 8am to 6pm.”

Imagine my suppressed laughter when, come Valentine’s Day, I can sense he’s forcing himself to stay awake until that something came.

Imagine my worry when his eagerness turned into anxiety, and then disappointment as the hours passed by and nothing came.

Imagine his frustrated tone when he finally admitted, the next day, that he picked out flowers for me that was supposed to arrive on V-day, and that he paid extra so it would arrive before lunchtime.

Imagine my surprise when he didn’t receive a notification from your company that the delivery was not made.

Imagine the tiny ounce of patience left in me when I calmly said, “Let’s see how they will apologize for it on Monday.”

Imagine my anger when you didn’t.

Allan never misses an occasion.  With almost 7,000 miles between us, he has made sure to never miss an event or an instance to profess his love for me.  (We long distance couples depend on these supposed convenient means to make our presence felt, just in case you are incapable of doing the math.)  So it all made sense when he finally admitted that it was the World Florist Association who did not deliver.

If he had not written an email about the non-delivery, would your sales team have informed him?  Not a peep, not a call, not a single PROACTIVE apology.  He had to tell you that you failed to do your job.

You did not even find it within the sphere of simple customer service and basic crisis management to just send the flowers immediately.  He had to wait for you to come up with it on your own.

You further insulted him, in my opinion, by throwing him a bone in the form of chocolates and a committed February 19 delivery.

A woman called at 3:30 pm today, confirming the delivery address and at the same time, assuring me that the flowers will reach me today.  It is now 10:00 pm and I am yet to see the shadow of the flowers my partner had lovingly picked out for me.

AND YOU STILL HAVE THE GALL TO CHARGE ALLAN FOR YOUR “SERVICE.” There is not a single soul in the business of complaints handling that would attest to your effective conflict resolution.  At least, not in this instance.

I could have done away with the flowers.  But Allan picked those out.  I want to see what he got for me.  He knows to pick exactly the ones I would love. He never misses an occasion.  But thanks to you, he has now.

I wanted to know at what level of disservice, dissatisfaction and inconvenience would trigger your tiny, tiny mind to actually deliver the product as requested as committed and also, grant him a full refund for every bit of trouble you’ve put him through?

Because given your poor comprehension of business ethics and the realization that you have not come close in making up for it — and my potty mouth ready to fire off at this very minute — a semblance of GENUINE, SINCERE, AND MEASURABLE APOLOGY IS IN DIRE NEED.

World Florist Association, sir, you are a cunt. You do not deserve his faith in your service, much more his money. You should be ashamed of yourself. Fucking give it back.

I am blessed with a kind-hearted man who will never talk down on anyone or make anyone feel bad on purpose. He will disagree with me on this, this email will lead to an argument, but I am not about to sit idly by and watch you STEAL HIS HARD EARNED MONEY AND CALL IT A QUALITY PRODUCT.

 
Absolutely never using your service again and OHMYGOD my LDR couple friends are going to so hear all about your assholery,
Me.

If the world were 100

Most infographics that I post are about fitness as I constantly struggle to make running a regular thing for me.

But I chanced upon this infographic on Pinterest and I knew I can’t unnotice it.

Inhale, then spread the knowledge.
20130815-130407.jpg Now doesn’t that give you a strong urge to be more grateful and make a bigger impact to the world?

Fare thee well

My dear readers, I believe my own personal form of tragedy struck last Saturday.

A classmate from grad school turned out to be one of those few people who fancy basically the same literary options as I do.  He kept mentioning this book that I just must read.  He insisted so much that he was willing to part with his copy temporarily.

I decided to end my curiosity last Saturday when I headed over to National Bookstore Mall of Asia on my way home to Las Piñas.  I walked in, two-strapping my backpack, my phone and wallet in one hand, a bag of cotton buds for my mother in the other.

I walked to Customer Service and had them look for that book.  Tea Obreht’s The Tiger’s Wife.  Personnel immediately radioed another staffer to look for a copy around the store.  In an effort to not look like a prick, I wandered around fiction and literary winners section for another book to add to my list.

I think I need to reread Jane Austen’s something.  Oooh, George Orwell.  I don’t get the buzz for Jessica Zafra.  IT’S MY FAVORITE BOOK!  Yay for Arlene Chai!  I wonder if they have Fight Club here…

Random thoughts kept spilling in and out of my head, and I didn’t notice the time.  The service personnel gave me The Tiger’s Wife and as I grabbed a copy of Persuasion, I noticed I only had my phone in my hand.  No wallet.

The next 40 minutes consisted of me peering over CCTV footage, filing complaints in Uniqlo, Forever21, Zara and National Bookstore, but as time droned by I had to accept the inevitable:  my wallet is never coming back to me.

I had to return the books I had in my hand.  It was the last copy of The Tiger’s Wife.  My father was waiting for me outside; at least I didn’t have to worry about my ride home.  And I was drowning in an overwhelming sense of calmness.

That sense has finally subsided when I woke up to get to work this morning.

Farewell, my safari printed Liz Claiborne wallet.  I know I’ve constantly complained about replacing you, but really you were precious.  You housed my photos, government IDs and cash and credit cards.  You housed my identity.  Never did I think that I’d lose you in a sea of books.  But then, that’s really the best way to lose any material possession.  However far away, I know for a fact that you will always be with me.

Because no bitch or whore would ever dare to steal my name.  If they know what’s good for them.

I miss you already. </3