Wednesday, March 5, 2014

When and Where

Today's prompt from NaBloPoMo on BlogHer: When or where do you feel most like yourself?

While I do tend to prefer staying at home when I'm not working, it's when I'm traveling that I feel most like myself.  I get so into the experience that I don't think about how others see me as much.  Not that I spend too much time thinking about that, but I have my self-conscious moments and/or times when I'm trying to behave (at work, mostly).  When I travel, I'm just doing and going and enjoying every moment just as I am.  I don't pause to think about being comfortable on my couch at home, I just want to get out and do things and see what I can, while I can (meaning, while I don't have to worry about being at work the next day, running errands, doing chores, etcetera).

Monday, March 3, 2014

Voices in My Head

Today's writing prompt:

How is your writing voice like you?  How does your writing voice differ from you?

I have always been told that I write exactly the way that I talk to people.  I take that as a compliment, since I'm guessing it means my writing isn't stilted or dry.  But I do think I'm a hell of a lot funnier and weirder in person.  I also edit the heck out of my writing for this blog, because it's not just about me.  Which I know is a funny thing to say what with this month's NaBloPoMo theme being SELF.

The Theme of SELF

I've been focusing on travel posts lately, in preparation for my Spring trip to Italy.  However, I am trying to recommit to NaBloPoMo via BlogHer for March and the theme is Self.  So, on days when there are prompts available, I'll try to write about me.  That should really be the easiest thing to write about...right?  Well, this was actually kind of hard and I felt like I was looking back on every time I've worked a retail job and had to say one interesting thing about myself at orientation.

Tell us five interesting things about yourself:

1.  I worked as a 911 Dispatcher for six months.  I was top in my class for all the tests, but it turned out I just do not have the personality for that job.  Evidenced by the fact that I did a lot of crying in my car after shifts.

2.  People always think I'm at least ten years younger than I actually am when they meet me.  I can't decide if it's thanks to having oily skin all my life (few wrinkles) or if I'm just obviously quite immature.

3.  Before going to Italy to visit Mary a few years ago, I'd never been out of the continental United States.  Which is precisely why some of my travel posts this month will be interviews with other women who are much better traveled than I.

4.  I was the only female in three generations born to my dad's side of the family (the side I grew up with).  Luckily, one of my cousins and his wife recently started the fourth generations with a baby girl!  Thank you, Paloma, for joining my previously one-woman sisterhood.  Cousinhood?  Sure.

5.  I have a tattoo on my right shoulder blade, but that isn't the interesting part.  It's the fact that I always forget that I have a tattoo there until someone else notices it (on the rare occasion that I wear a tank top).  And I'm always surprised.  ((sigh))

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Hometown Happenings and Hipsters

I've barely been in the Seattle area a year and am still trying to keep my head above water financially (moves are expensive and I have had far too many).  So I haven't had the kind of time or resources I'd hoped for to really go exploring.  However, working in a pretty social environment has garnered me some great recommendations for places to eat and drink.  While my friend Jenn introduced me to many fabulous Seattle locations, it's nice to finally have information about Renton, where I'm actually residing (about 20 minutes from downtown Seattle).

So what to do if you don't have anything in common with your co-workers, you're new to the area and you desperately want to get out to great places?  There's an app for that...actually, there are quite a few.  Here are the ones I've recently tried:

Circle:  Local news and events from people in your community.  The push notifications have been interesting lately: an update on human skeletal remains found in a neighboring county vying for my attention against an ultimate frisbee meetup.  Yeah, it's diverse.  But I honestly don't look at it that often and quite a lot of the posts aren't interesting to me (some read like Facebook status updates, but from people I don't know, which isn't my cup of tea).  Still a decent resource and worth checking out, especially if you're wanting to make friends by going to events like that ultimate frisbee match I mentioned or, say, a bonfire.  No, really.  

Applauze:  This is a great app if you want to be in the know about concerts and be able to link up with friends through an app.  It also allows you to buy tickets immediately without hidden charges.  Better for those interested in E-tickets, but keep in mind that all sales are final.  For someone like me, it's more about getting updated on events.  Make sure you're in one of the 25 cities they currently offer events in.


Scoutmob:  This is the newest to me, but also my favorite.  I have my favorite nail polish company, Julep, to thank for this one.  They've teamed up with Scoutmob and Women's Health for a shopping spree giveaway.  The pictures of small-batch cosmetics on the giveaway page drew me in, but it's the free mobile app that won me over.  From the main site you can sign up for one of 13 cities to "go local" in.  Lucky for me, Seattle is one of them (as Julep is Seattle-based, that's no surprise).  Scoutmob offers mobile deals at boutiques and eateries in the Seattle area, a section where you can shop for locally-made goods, local events, etc.  But my favorite part of the app, admittedly, is the "curiosities" section, which has random weird facts about the city.  For example, I've been lucky enough to go to Salumi twice since I moved here (thank you, Jessica I. and Marcus) and would recommend it to anyone and everyone who visits.  I knew that Mario Batali's parents co-owned it, but I didn't know this:
"The first Italian food import store in Seattle was opened in 1903 by the grandfather of Salumi Artisan Cured Meats cofounder, Armandino Batali."  
But you may prefer weird over random facts, like this one:
"If you're in Everett, please refrain from displaying hypnotized people in a store window.  It's illegal.  Don't let it happen again."
Scoutmob definitely has more to offer than the other apps, but it does go in more of a hipster vein.  Which makes it not as accessible to the majority...although there sure are lot of hipsters here!  And I don't mean anything bad by that, as they usually know the best places to eat, drink and shop, in my opinion.