Beach Days and Bombed Job Interviews

It’s a bad sign when you go to a job interview with more excitement about the beach day you plan afterward. I knew it was too far.  I knew it wouldn’t allow the home/work balance that is so important to me.  I didn’t know that parking would come at the student rate, without a discount.  I didn’t know the main part of the job is to be a gatekeeper for the more antisocial folks.  That was probably the worst part. I have antisocial moments sometimes.  Sometimes I can be snarky and a little mean.  But to make it clear that it was an office that doesn’t like people . . . I couldn’t see it as a good fit.  I interviewed badly.  I don’t think it was on purpose.  I think I was being myself, and for some people that’s the last thing they want to be around.

So I drove to Manhattan Beach.  It wasn’t a mental breakdown moment.  It was a mental health day. It was a moment of being in the moment and spontaneous. If I had prepared, I would have brought warm clothes and stayed much longer. I think the idea of walking along the shops was my original plan.  I checked the weather. I wasn’t planning on walking in the sand or touching icy water. I wanted to check out the cute shops and restaurants I used to love.

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Manhattan Beach

The clouds kept filtering above.  I felt warmth and freezing cold, with the constant coastal breeze.  I keep a waterproof blanket in the car, but I didn’t really plan anything, so my beach trip was in my suit jacket and skirt.  I didn’t mind.  I did notice an esoteric coincidence.

The left one was at Manhattan Beach.  The one on the right was at Will Rogers state beach.  I noticed in both shots I was leading with my left.  It wasn’t on purpose, but again, I tend to look for meanings where there might not be any.  I came across something I had read before saying that Egyptians and Greeks often created art with a leading left foot because it is believed the left side is the side ruled by the heart. It’s about leading with the heart and emotions.  It’s about life and new beginnings.  Whether or not it’s an unrealistic stretch, it seemed significant, and relevant.

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Will Rogers State Beach, Tower 8

I took the streets north, and drove along Dockweiler State Beach.  I continued as the road I was on headed inland through Marina Del Rey.  I remembered a date taking me to the jetty where he held my hand as we walked on jagged rocks, and he laughed when I flinched at the scurrying rodents.  I remember wanting him to kiss me so badly and I remembered that he never did. I wasn’t following a map.  I was just driving, so I saw Venice and turned left.  A few blocks from the ocean I decided I wasn’t in the mood for crazy.  I ended up in traffic on Pacific Coast Highway and turned left on Temescal Canyon Road.  It’s the first time I’ve ever been to the beach during daylight hours.  I loved the many rocks I was able to pick through.  Every time I go to a body of water, I look for rocks.  I love igneous rocks, and will pick through interesting colors and shapes.  One day my youngest niece handed me a rock.  I was so deeply moved.  I don’t think she understood how much her rock meant to me.  But it was huge.

I walked along the shoreline, stepping through waves and picking up rocks.  I sat on boulders and felt the sun warm my skin where the breeze chilled it.  It was so clear at Will Rogers with the sun warming my skin and not even a little cloud cover. Manhattan Beach was freezing in comparison. I watched the sunset and with the descending sun the chilled ocean air blew right through my jacket. With frozen hands and feet that were pretty numb, I walked to my car and drove home.

I took the streets home.  I drove up Temescal Canyon Road to Sunset. I love the curves on the winding roads of Sunset Blvd. near UCLA. I took Sunset until it changed to Cesar Chavez and turned left on Broadway.  I drove through Chinatown and then home to Lincoln Heights. I love that it’s literally 3 street names to my favorite beach.  The name change doesn’t count.  Not really.

All job hunting misadventures should end up like today.

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Will Rogers

 

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