Saturday, Aug. 25, 2018 - 8:55 am.
I'm writing early today because I got up to see Andrew and our friend L off to Manchester for the day. I'm looking forward to a day at home by myself! I don't get to have those because Andrew rarely goes out for an entire day on his own. Which isn't bad, I like having him around, but this silence in the house, man.
Our friend L has been here for since Monday. She's one of Andrew's best friends from their undergrad years and she's finishing her PhD in Spain. She's visiting friends and family she has scattered around Europe, figuring out her life after the PhD AND after a nasty separation from a long-time partner who cheated on her and has, say, narcissistic tendencies. I'm very fond of L, we have fun together and smart conversations. I hope she lands in a place where she can continue enjoying life.
Anyway, off they went to Manchester. I wasn't interested in the music tour they were taking today (AND a concert tomorrow) so I stayed home. I'm gonna party hard: work on assorted writing/doodling with loud music on. Maybe go for coffee with my friend Eric today, and with my crush A tomorrow. More on that later.
I went to London on Thursday to get an extension for my Chilean residency, so I've had my share of train journeys this week, too. That trip went well! It's silly to invest that much money and a whole day just to sit at an office for an hour and hand in some documents, but at least everything was sorted right there.
I was wary of meeting the man who handles this paperwork, he was the one who made very uncomfortable comments the first time I spoke to him on the phone (and the reason why it was Andrew who always called on my behalf for the years to come). He turned out to be a short man in a suit, quite polite; I'm not giving him a pass, I'm just glad my concerns didn't materialize. It helped, I think, that there were other people outside of his office besides me, people who were also there for paperwork but who seemed to be in familiar terms with him. I was more relaxed.
Nothing remarkable happened on that trip, really, other than me getting my extension and being proud of myself for knowing how to move around London. I lost a day's work and a lot of money, between the train ticket and the paperwork fee, but my Chilean status is in order and I can continue living in the UK for a year. Jesus, a year left here (if we don't find a postdoc position or something). Let's leave that emotionally charged topic for another day.
Speaking of leaving, last night there was a little get-together in a pub for a friend in the department who got her PhD and is leaving for Edinburgh. She was my desk neighbor at the office. I missed the chance to talk to her, but I ended up drinking a screwdriver and sitting next to my female Colombian crush.
It doesn't sound too bad of a situation, although she's not my crush anymore. I just like her as a friend. She did joke about marrying me at some point, so I could have a British passport (she does), but later on she asked what my name was. That's a funny juxtaposition of events and I don't mind; plus, we've been acquaintances for a few years, although our interactions amount to a few hours. We really come together when we talk about books, though, and we're meeting for coffee as soon as I finish the book she recommended me.
The evening went well, but I wasn't getting into some of the topics raised between her and other women at our table. I was uncomfortable with a few comments they made to a man who was in our table, who is the supervisor of another fellow PhD student and of my male Colombian crush, also not my crush anymore. Sure, he's a white cis man, which was the core of the comments, but he was quite alright (particularly by the way he handled those comments). I'm feminist, so I get a little cringy when feminism is misunderstood in terms of the directions it can go regarding men, especially by women who are also feminists.
I didn't say anything though. It's not like people listen to me. In fact, I've realized people in my current social circles are not very good at listening to each other, and they interrupt each other a lot. Which is why I usually end up with Andrew, we know how a conversation works. Anyway, the man at our table and me ended up sharing our discomfort at seeing the women at our table going for the Aryan traits of sperm donors on a sperm bank website.
The night was fun overall, though. There was a girl there, also a postdoc, whom I'd always privately joked about having a crush on me because she never acknowledges my presence. She doesn't look at me. She just probably doesn't like me or actively does not care for me. She was there with her girlfriend*, and at some point I mentioned something about going to the Brighton Pride, and I think what they started whispering to each other had to do with what I'd say. But her girlfriend made eye contact with me, once, so maybe she doesn't dislike me as much as her partner does.
*I give myself points because I was joking to myself about this girl liking me way before I consciously knew she, in fact, liked women (just not me). My gaydar/bi-fi signal is chronically stunted but it worked this time.
So my last crush remaining at the moment is my Mexican friend A. I helped her this week with a chapter of her thesis and she gave me a chocolate bar. We may go for coffee tomorrow, while Andrew and L are at the concert, but then again, we may not. I'm looking forward to it happening but it's all up to her.
When I read her message "please help me with this chapter, how can I pay you?", I did joke (you see, I "joke" a lot with myself) that my answer would be "go on a date with me". Truthfully, girlfriend needs some serious loving to get through the last stage of her thesis writing, but I don't think I'm the one who will step up to help. I'm not single and she's straight, so I'm not fretting over this.
On a related note, lately I've noticed that Andrew seems unusually concerned about me leaving him for a woman. He says it half-joking (sound familiar?) when we go to bed and kiss each other good night, but it's kind of heartbreaking, for him and for me. We are in love and very happy with each other, we're both very clear on that. I wouldn't leave him for anybody. I think we should talk about that next time we go for coffee. We have good conversations over coffee.
Ok, it's time to go seize this day. I have to work on my Brother #3's and my paper, make a little Simeon comic strip...oh, oh, someone bought a Simeon travel mug, and someone else a notebook on my Redbubble store! I'm nervous because I haven't bought those two designs myself, so I'm crossing my fingers they look as good in print as they do on the screen. This buying-my-own-designs-to-test-them thing is why I cannot say I've made any profit from these sales and probably never will. But, you know, I don't do it for the money, so yay (although money would be nice)!