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(pathetic moaning undeserving of a title)

This isn't one of those times when I sit down to write with a

I am frustrated, mostly. I feel pummelled by mistake after mistake, showing me how naive or thoughtless or hypocritical I am. I have, in the last two weeks, said the wrong thing several times, taken the wrong approach, offended, endangered others. I can't be trusted with sensitive information; I can't gracefully repair a social situation rather than making it worse; I can't communicate with clarity without making an ass of myself in another culture. I'm afraid I've lost one friend, and I quite inadvertently set another against someone. I stumbled in a business situation requiring great diplomacy. And because it seems like one thing after another, I've been increasingly ungraceful in the face of these errors, and more and more frustrated. I fall just short of throwing things.

Six months ago I was enjoying my life more than probably ever before! It feels like so much of what I was enjoying has taken a turn, and of course I must go with it. I know life has up moments and down moments, and we thrill in the up moments and learn from the down moments. I was just really consciously hoping that last up moment would last, I don't know... a bit longer.

I got one last delicious taste during that last trip back home, which appropriately enough ended in near tragedy: the day I flew back to England, someone stole a bunch of checks from our joint checking account in San Francisco and proceeded to clear out our account with forged checks, which fortunately an observant bank teller caught on to and alerted us. We'll get the money back, but the cost of calls to the U.S. and the inconvenience and hassle of having to close the account and cancel all the other uncleared checks, making several bill payments late as a result, casts a pall over the situation. Plus flying back and forth all the time costs money, and nobody's reimbursing me for that - and if you recall, I had to quit my $$$ job (which I had just started really enjoying) to come here (why? do you remember? Not on holiday -- but to prevent damage to my marriage due to extended separation).

While I'm here I've been put in a position of great responsibility on a project which is going to hell in a handbasket, and the 2-week vacation I have planned with Gina, to Germany and Russia next month, seems to be suddenly right in the middle of a timetable for an event I'm supposed to plan. Well, that takes some of the fun out of that. About every other day my internet connection at home eats dirt, and if there's a free computer at Ash's work I can use, it's a half-hour walk through town to get there. Like I've nothing better to do; and that's certainly not condusive to writing, nor keeping in touch with my friends in the States who are only awake during what are for me evening and night hours.

We don't have DSL here, I can't be on the phone and the internet at the same time, and my cell phone is "pay as you talk"... and 25 quid goes mighty fast to the U.S.

I certainly am being moany, but sometimes one just needs to get it out of one's system.

If anyone's reading this? Person 1: sorry I overreacted. I was just looking for an apology and went about it wrong. Person 2: I'm sorry I'm thickheaded about corporate politics, and what looks to me like boldfaced lying is actually diplomacy intended to protect the integrity of the company... here I am thinking of my own integrity, which has been pointed out to me as less than complete by Person 3, who I can't believe I said that thing I said to, when we had just finished that conversation about saying stuff like that! I know, I've lost the rest of you completely. Forgive me, I'm in despair and don't know what I'm saying.

Ever have weeks like this? I wish, I wish, I wish I could wake up in my soft bed in San Francisco without regrets, secrets, or dreadful feelings of stupidity.

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