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Busy, busy, tired, busy.... - Micole Khemarrica
khromat
khromat
Busy, busy, tired, busy....
It's been awhile since my last posting, so this will full of short snips of what's been happening.

First off, late in October I was transfered to yet another Guckenheimer unit, this time up to Stanford University and the Clark Center's NeXus Cafe.  This is a hustling locale, feeding approximately 1,500 students and faculty in and around the James H. Clark Center.  This cafe has such a good reputation, folks from other Stanford buildings --  including the hospital -- will take the extra effort to get into the NeXus; we even have a few regulars who pick up lunch for a group.

I'm getting up at the same time, but arrive for a 6:30am start instead of 6:00am -- Stanford is a 30 minute drive from home.  Not only does this cost a little more from gas usage, but Stanford is infamous about the parking situation on campus and permits must be bought to allow parking *anywhere* that isn't a coin-operated parking space.  My first month working there was 'free' as the manager compensated me for the monthly pass, because I was originally assigned as a temporary help to cover for a person on vacation.  But now that he's back from vacation and there is talk of keeping me on permanently, I have to buy the permits out of my own wallet.  There is supposed to be a raise in pay to compensate for the increased cost of doing business there, but until the paperwork goes through on my reassignment I'm still stuck at my current rate while incurring steeper costs.  Oh, yea, and I have to drive to Mountain View to pick up my paycheck from the HP Cafe I'm still currently assigned at.

I got in plenty of knifework practice as I was covering for one of the two-man team at the Asian Station, as well as being on the front line to serve the food at that station during Service.  It was a little rough to start, but I got into the rhythm of the station and was pretty happy about it.  When Ricky returned from vacation, though, things got a little more awkward.  The manager recognized that my culinary degree was not being put to good use by just being a prep cook, but they didn't have a plan on what to do with me beyond wanting to keep me.  This week they tried having me help the Catering station with "grab and go's" -- pre-made salads and sandwiches that would be available in the drinks cooler for walk-in customers as well as for any catered orders.  I was to help prep all that in the morning, then switch gears and setup the Exhibition (Pasta) Station for Service.   The one guaranteed trigger for my anxiety attacks is time-stress and task-confusion, and this had both.  So, all this week I had minor to major anxiety attacks as I fought my slow preparation speed while trying to locate all the parts necessary for the five different salads and four different sandwiches.  Rafael, the chef, had a meeting with me in his office on Thursday about the situation and decided to reassign my tasklist ... so, on Friday I didn't work with the Catering stuff at all, I was solely responsible for the Pasta station prep, setup, and service as well as prep for the pizzas -- which is a self-serve station where pizzas are cooked fresh all during service, so Rafael just needs to have all the ingredients set up in the back area for him.  What a difference!  No anxiety attack on Friday, no time management stress, I even made an extra 8 gallons of the vegetarian chili to get it up to par and surprised the chef and the other cooks in my immediate area on how good it was.  Up to this point they've only seen me chop veggies and fumble my way through wrapping sandwiches, so I shouldn't be too surprised, but it felt good nonetheless.  So now I "own" the Pasta Station, and it should be smooth sailing.


My home situation's been frustrating as it looks like I may have depression, an effect from longterm use of Strattera which is the medication that's supposed to be helping my ADHD. Yay.  I come home from work and promptly collapse, feeling no energy to do anything but sleep.  And I sleep a lot.  Yet I still feel tired when I wake up, so it's not necessarily a healthy sleep.  And, of course, since I'm not doing anything I want to do, i get depressed about that.  I've not touched my Companion Cube project in weeks.  I intend to make baked gifts for friends as I have no money for anything else and I can't get up the energy to bake or even clean the kitchen so I can bake.

Speaking of gifts, outside of kitchen-geek stuff like the 7-quart Slow Cooker w/Stainless Steel Insert, a serious baker's bread machine, the really cool self-contained ice cream maker, or even the silly AeroGrow Indoor Garden, I've really had little catch my fancy for putting on a Christmas Wishlist -- mostly likely due to the depression.

Current Mood: depressed depressed

8 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
twentythoughts From: twentythoughts Date: December 2nd, 2007 01:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
Depression ain't good... Maybe it's time to cut down a little on the meds?

Glad to hear that work's going well after that rough start, still!
wingywoof From: wingywoof Date: December 2nd, 2007 02:03 pm (UTC) (Link)
I've been going through an especially rough patch myself lately and though it's not always easy, it does help to force yourself to think positively. Worry is my biggest enemy. It leads to both anxiety and depression when my mind gets away from me.

Try to get some regular exercise, vitamins, eat well, laugh often and try not to take things so seriously if you can help it. I do hope things improve for you soon Micole.
(Deleted comment)
From: tomobiki_yuu Date: December 2nd, 2007 04:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
Micole, you are a wonderful person, and I know many people care about you, and I know you're a strong person at heart, and if this old kitter can help in any way, let me know.
kagur From: kagur Date: December 2nd, 2007 09:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
I hope your work continues to be less stress-inducing and that your depressiong lifts soon.

You are a wonderful person, chef, and artist:) Let me know if there is something I can do.
darklilith69 From: darklilith69 Date: December 3rd, 2007 01:55 am (UTC) (Link)
Hey, Squeakers!

I LOVE YOU! *smile* HUGS! *more smiles*

Sounds actually, like life is working it's way into a good rhythm. Depression can make is so you can't see it easily, but it sure sounds good! Not the depression. *grin*

Many many meds after long term use can make you more prone to depression. With me it was/is Prednisone. That one can actually make people crazy as in truly insane. I rode that very fine line after taking it for *many* years but can't stop as it's the one med pretty much keeping me alive. Soooo I started on an antidepressant that I did research on to see what symptoms it helped. (I actually saw a special on it, on TV, too.) In any case, it worked! It was amazing and I take a geriatric dose. Meaning tiny. This may be something you may want to look into. Drop me a note if you want to know more - at my darklilith69 gmail account. :)

More hugs! :D
chefmongoose From: chefmongoose Date: December 3rd, 2007 06:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh dear, you've caught the same Portal madness all this fandom seems to have. Weighted Companion Cube project looks interesting!

Yeah, switchover between stations can be tough, I'm sure. I know it can frazzle me when I have to do prep shift at work AND then set up a station, if for no other reason than fretting over when to switch between the two. Enjoy your time I'm pasta station, and I'm sure you'll get even smoother yet about getting the extra prep done. Bleh about the longer commute.. get yourself a good iPod or whatnot, go the podcast rout! It makes me almost wish my commute was longer. :)

The slow cooker looks good, if pricey for what you could probably do with a $50-80 crockpot, outside from the stovetop switchover ability. Skip the ice cream maker. No one uses those. ;)

I'm now on my third head chef and third sous chef of the year at my restaurant. Ayieee!

Edited at 2007-12-03 06:38 pm (UTC)
niall_shapero From: niall_shapero Date: December 27th, 2007 06:31 am (UTC) (Link)

Drug effects

You should speak to the doctor who prescribed the Strattera regarding the apparent side effect of the drug; there may be alternative drugs for your ADHD that do not have the side effect (or have the effect to a lesser degree). Depression resulting from brain chemistry imbalances is not something you can just "think" yourself out of -- get medical attention.

-- NCS
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