business of the day
first day back to work, and one of the things i didn't do was to ask everyone what they did during the break. i figured, since i didn't do anything special, whatever they did, even if it was a just a little something, would be so much better than what i did during the past 11 or so days. our mandatory monday meeting we went over new vacation days policies, now all days off are vacation days (which includes sick days and personal days), and all vacation days are accrued, with everyone starting at zero vacation days (actually vacation hours) beginning today. that means i won't be able to take a day off until the end of this month, whether it'd be for personal, sick, or vacation. so oh work force gods, please do not allow me to be sick for the next 30 days! i guess i could take it in an emergency, but according to the new policy, i would then owe the company for that day, and god forbid if i decide to quit, i'd probably have to pay them back. it's funny, but everyone in the development department chimed in with some sort of comment about the policy. hmmm, weird, right? i didn't even want to bring up that can of worms known as overtime compensation. i try not to think about it, it's the start of a brand new year, no need to get all bent out of shape just yet.

no jam for you
there was no mention of john miller during the meeting. afterwards, alex came to me and said how it was so quiet downstairs now. i knew it! i didn't really feel john miller's absence upstairs. the whole downstairs contingency could sneak off to canobie lake amusement park for the day and i wouldn't be the wiser. when i did came downstairs during lunch though, it was a weird feeling. i even involuntarily looked around the corner to see if john was there, knowing full well that he wasn't. his desk was exactly the same way he left it that friday before everyone went off to their christmas holiday, no one had yet to clean out his space or to claim it as his/her own.

which reminds me, i had a weird dream about john miller last night. in this dream i had the ability to float up in the air, see the world from above, and i was holding john. i think he was telling me where to go. we end up on a pirate's galleon, and we're hanging out on the ship, but it gets kind of boring, so we both decide to leave. so i grab onto john and away we go, up up up in air! anyone who can interpret this dream, please send me some e-mail. i also had some dreams about office coworkers, but i don't remember any of it (probably wasn't anything juicy). i told carrie this dream when we went out to get lunch, and she said something about peter pan. no way, there was no peter panism involved!

bad news a few blocks away
after the meeting i got an aim from marc, informing me that he had just been let go from tsh. i thought he was joking at first, but turned out to be serious. it just reaffirms the position that you have to be sort of cynical and stand vigil during these tough economic times, you can't just relax and let off your guard and think it (it being getting laid off, or whatever business jargon they're using these days) won't happen to you, especially if it has already happened to a lot of other people. i gave marc a piece of advice and i hope he followed it. at least it didn't happen before the holidays, i give the powers-that-be that much credit at least.

rest of my day
the rest of the day went off for me rather uneventfully. acclimating myself to the new work year ("hi, this year brought to you by your sponsor, work!"), i think i still have some latent trauma from the work i did at the end of last year. work genuinely scares me now. actually, not the work itself. it's the other stuff. late nights, crazy hours, zeroing out my social life, eating poorly, missing my shows. as long as we don't kill ourselves over the schedule, i'll be fine though. as long as somebody put the belt in my mouth when i start having uncontrollable seizures, then everyday's going to be a sunny day.

i go home
i promptly left the office at 5pm feeling very happy for some reason. i had no reason to be in such a good mood (my default departure mood is "sullen" or "totally exhausted"). it was cold and dark outside, but i was all bundled up in my warm winter clothes, several layers deep, listening to the langley school kids chiming through the earbuds. i smiled at a few strangers, who probably thought i must've been crazy. i made it all the way home still carrying all this good vibration (which, coincidently, is one of the songs the kids sing, beach boys cover).

day one. maybe this year won't be so bad after all.