Saturday, November 01, 2014

Keeping Frost Off The Cantaloupes

A guy at the gym told me the temperature is to drop to 26 tonight.  I have covered my cantaloupe vine with two ragged towels and a tablecloth, and I pray that it and the two adolescent fruits attached to it survive. One is five inches in diameter and the other is six, and neither is ready to pick for another two weeks. Meteorological scuttlebutt has it getting warm again in a few days. I thought about sticking a tiny heater outside next to my flowerbed, but that seemed a little silly.

Mums and I drove down to south Augusta Thursday, to a swamp by the municipal airport (approx. 6 flights a day--a far cry from Hartsfield), to go bike riding. Perfect sunny, slightly cool, clear weather.  We saw six large (between 6 and 8 feet length overall) alligators sunning themselves next to a fenced pond. They looked fat and self-satisfied, their permanent snaggle-toothed grins leering up at us on the path 20 feet away. This was the first time I'd seen alligators hereabouts.

I've gotten several more rejection letters this week from job applications (no correspondence of any kind from the six literary agents to which I've sent queries regarding the translated manuscript).  And I've gotten a "you're nice, but no dice" phone call from two other places. One said they'd found a more suitable candidate, one was an international recruiter who'd initially been thrilled in print that I wanted to use their services to go overseas as a teacher. Then they'd gotten my full application, that included a nicely-worded personal essay and a formal lesson plan (which took days to complete). Those weren't what sunk me, but instead the two tick marks I'd put in the boxes nect to the "have you ever been treated for an emotional or mental disorder" and "do you currently take any prescription medication?" questions.  They could legally ask this (and my height, weight and age) because it was a foreign government form, not a US one.  I do have (totally managed) OCD, for which I (I joke, "almost obsessively") take medication daily--I even included a signed physician's note to verify these claims.  But it turns out that this particular Southeast Asian government won't accept any candidates who have pharmacologically-neutralized issues like mine. "They won't tell you why you've been rejected," the recruiter told me. " This is a 'dirty little secret' only associated recruiters know."  It was pretty much a kick in the teeth.  Rather than going through the recruiter, then, I submitted my paperwork directly to the government program website. I figured I didn't have anything to lose, and heck, they might as well reject me outright. In the meantime, I have a Sunday evening Skype interview with a recruiter for another country who doesn't anticipate problems, despite my stated psychological issues.  Sheesh.

I've agreed to go up to DC at the beginning of next month to help Anita with a series of holiday shows, both indoor and outdoor. I hope the weather will cooperate and that I'll have a lot of saleable creations to take up with me. Yesterday I spray-painted a huge quantity of paper ornaments silver and another lot gold. Once they are completely gilded, I plan to cover them with glitter and then seal them and attach loops of string so they can be hung up.  I will eventually post pictures of the results and of my sequin and bead embellishment of satin-covered styrofoam balls, some of which have ended up being really lovely!

1 comment:

gnutron said...

You should have lied about the mental health thing. Lying to foreign powers isn't just permissible, it's your duty as a patriotic American. And if they ask which meds you're on, you can tell them the truth--just claim that you're taking them for migraines or insomnia or neuropathic pain or something like that. Just about every psychiatric drug can be used off-label to treat a socially acceptable malady.