Jul. 9th, 2010


Jul. 9th, 2010 02:17 am
A lot has happened to me in the past week, and I've felt like writing for some time. This is basically a lifelog entry dealing with Google orientation and the effect of sickness on my gender presentation.

July 1: Left home, and theoretically ended my dependence on my parents altogether. They're in Australia for a while, which has helped to make the separation cleaner somehow. Moved into my new apartment properly; got a really awesome Tempurpedic mattress, which is one of the most comfortable things ever. Got a library card - the Cambridge public library is really quite something, and has its own cafe and free wifi access. Found an excellent grocery store, and provisioned myself with vegetarian food. Got dinner at Border Cafe in Cambridge with two of my partners; they helped calm me down quite a bit.

July 2: Actually got my bed assembled and stuff. Went out to dinner at Fire and Ice in Cambridge, which is this incredible build-your-own-stirfry restaurant; very highly recommended if ever you're in the area.

July 3: joshua_ took me flying in a little four-seater Piper Warrior. We did a circle around Boston's airspace, although they wouldn't let us fly over the city proper because there was a game going on at Fenway. Still very cool, and the views were unmatched; the photos I took with his camera are lying around somewhere. Unfortunately, just after we landed, I got a call from American Airlines (I bet you can guess how this goes...) informing me that my flight to Mountain View for training had been moved from July 4 11am to July 4 6am, meaning I wouldn't have time to sleep before leaving for Logan Airport. I ended up rushing my packing job and not leaving my apartment as clean as I'd like, which means I will probably find bugs of some kind when I return.

July 4: Got to the airport, etc etc etc. 11 hours in the air. At the beginning of this dance, I noticed that the back of my throat was feeling somewhat raw, but failed to interpret this as a sign of what was actually to come. Fortunately, I also found out on this day that my orientation didn't begin until the 7th, due to the Independence Day celebrations. This was good, because...

July 5 & 6: Completely flattened by the worst case of strep throat I've ever had. An interaction with the doctor: "Well, the rapid test came back negative, so let's get a look at that thr-oh, wow!" I was literally reduced to lying flat on my back in bed, trying to avoid swallowing because it made me nearly double up in pain. Fortunately, ttuttle showed up to be completely and totally helpful; his support, along with a timely delivery of medicine by thebaron, have kept me sane and together through being sick. I also got some fairly strong antibiotics at a clinic near my hotel, which have been helping.

July 7 & 8: Orientation. I'm not actually flattened any more, but the sickness saps my energy and willpower, which are things I need to maintain my expressed femininity (i.e.: if I'm really tired, or don't have the time to put into maintaining my appearance, my externalized femininity takes a nosedive, which is a really unfortunate time to meet people). To make matters worse, my voice was all messed up (specifically, sounded like I was talking through a mouthful of glue), and I couldn't swallow any solid food.

What I find kind of striking is that none of this diminished the awesome. Google is just an incredible place; the entire organization seems to be exceptional from top to bottom. The internal stuff is mostly just as polished as the external stuff, and it's all used so well. I'm really excited about my project, and very much looking forward to starting work proper at Google Cambridge.

Ongoing annoyance: my Google badge has my legal name on it, and people keep reading the name off it to introduce themselves to me. Hopefully less of a problem once I'm out of the orientation phase of my life.

Ongoing annoyance 2: lingering symptoms from this strep attack. Throat still hurts; nose still blocked. At least it's getting better.

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