My mother has been much happier ever since I started working. I suppose I’m hardly ever around because of the long commute and overtime at work. So, she misses me, and, as a result, showers me with motherly affection. My dad would do that too, if he was around. Sadly, he’s still up at San Jose helping my uncle finish the construction of his new five-bedroom house. I believe he’s returning in a few days — just in time for Lunar New Year’s celebrations! And, as far as The Family is concerned, everyone is doing fine. All the young’uns are back to school. Their grades are good, and I think I’m starting to influence their frequency of leisure reading. That’s good. Linda, my eldest cousin, is expecting a baby in a few months. So, I’ll be an uncle by early May. Also, the uncle whom my father is helping, Tony, is expecting a son. Another cousin will enter the family. (I think there’s 17 cousins in all?)
My girl is doing just fine. She started the second half of her first year in Pharmacy School. L and I miss each other a lot, and both of us are eager to see each other in May. Last weekend and the one before that, L and I had “phone dates.” On the first weekend, we rented “Sleepless in Seattle” and “Shawshank Redemption” for the next. We would cue the movie so that it would be running at the same time in our respective time zones. Then, we’d watch the movie together over the phone. Pretty neat. After our first phone date, I used FTD to send her a huge bouquet of long-stem yellow roses at her workplace. All her co-workers teased her about it, and she was on cloud nine the whole day. Could we be a part of the modern long-distance couple? Hmm… I still love her very deeply. I desire her very much. And, I still think she’s the girl of my dreams.
I’m still working at Countrywide. I turned in my application for permanent hire a week ago. I should hear a response by the end of this week or early next. I’m still studying for my real estate exam, and that is going along very well. I’m learning a lot of terminology, contract types, and procedures. I should be learning more about the financial technical details this week. Also this week, I will be getting my certificate that will OK me to take the state exam. Also, the Peace Corps sent me an invitation to volunteer this Friday. So, I’ll be getting more information about my assignment and country this week. If I get the country that I want (China), then I think this real estate license will just be another “hobby” as I make preparations for my departure.
Aside from my real estate studies, I am slowly increasing my Chinese vocabulary. I’m not retaining as much as I would like, but at least I’m doing something to keep exposure. I’m at 250 something characters so far. During lunch on weekdays, I would jot down five charcters on my flashcards and go over them. Ideally, I should go over them on the weekends.
I am finishing up my third week of my “Body-for-Life” program. I’m noticing firmer muscles, but the fat around my waist hasn’t gone down by much (if at all). I feel very good, though. A lot more energetic. And, my sex drive is stronger than usual (is there really a difference?), and I am excited about the progress in weight resistence.
I got a new laptop. It’s a first-tier at a black market price. Friggin’ wonderful. Some co-worker at my fourth aunt’s work bought a spanking new laptop and then decided to leave for Vietnam. So, he needed to get rid of it. He owed my aunt several hundred bucks so decided to sell the laptop at a huge discount to her. Anyway, I’m incredibly overjoyed to have received this new toy for only $800 ($1,500 market price).