Saturday, January 20, 2007

So much to say, so little time to say it....

My life got busy this past week. Relative to the previous 3-month "sabatical" I've been enjoying, life has gotten CRAZY in the last week!

Thankfully being back to working has been a very nice and positive experience! My boss is pretty cool, my cow-orkers are friendly, and the work thus far has been interesting. I had almost 4 days of productive work in my first week, which must surely be a record for starting a professional job.

The coolest part, though, has been the Dutch speaking. I can understand Dutch pretty well, and lately have been speaking it a bit. (A lot relative to earlier years.) But in this office the all-Dutch staff speak to me almost exclusively in "Nederlands". And I've been following and replying in kind.

For those who haven't tried learning a language through full immersion, it's a challenge. It's a learn-or-be-lonely proposition. Opposite to the Borg (a la Star Trek TNG), if you don't learn the language, you will not be assimilated. And it isn't easy.

By Friday my brain had given up. It was information overload and I felt like I couldn't process a sentence to save my life. But previously this "Dutch headache" came to me after just a few hours of listening and talking. Friday's problem had a 4 day build-up! So I can feel rapid improvements that are absolutely thrilling... albeit also exhausting.

So the first benefit from my new job seems to be an increased enthusiasm for learning Dutch. The second benefit, I think, is to my health. Lots of walking, long days, early nights, and healthy lunches are now marking my time in place of sleeping in, staying up late, and eating on the run.

Getting to my office involves a half hour of walking (2 x 15min) plus walking home from Central Station in Amsterdam (30min). And I actually managed to race home from work and hit the gym one evening. But only one, so I'm off to exercise now... and will again tomorrow.

The rigid schedule of getting up early and going to work has also made my eating schedule healthier. I grab breakfast, two lunches, a snack after work and then a small dinner later at night. Small bits of food through the day is what my body wants to keep me energized. And it's getting it.

Oddly, I spent most of the week in a CAD Software training course. I learned a lot and it was fun. But I think the above benefits will last far longer than experience with yet another computer program.

Dare I say it??? I think I'm looking forward to work on Monday. Huh?!?


quilldancer said...

Looking forward to Monday ... Alien concept. Does not compute ....

IDiveAtNight said...

No, it doesn't make sense. Except I have been becoming more Dutch, and they have a saying... "Als ik moet, ik wil." If I have to, then I want to. :-)