Thursday, January 31, 2008

Why is it...

Why is it in life that we chase that one elusive element to the jig saw puzzle called happiness. For all of us this picture of happiness is of different composition, colour and style and I get that. But why is it that the one and only piece we need to turn a broken life of 'could be' and 'should be' into a juggernaut of joy for us and all around us so difficult to find? That one piece could make us so much more than we are, that key segment that can make us 1000% more capable of anything and everything.
Yesterday I was emailed by a dear friends and told that a mutual friend had killed himself. No facts are certain but his girlfriend had dumped him and perhaps his house of cards collapsed leaving him with nothing left.
The amount of energy and time we expend looking for and trying to keep hold of that one piece of happiness that we underpin all the rest of our hopes and dreams on is staggering... and for this friend it was all too much to put back together. Sometimes I wonder when I will run out of energy to do it, to look for to nuture and care for it, when that centrepiece stops being.
Love comes by seldom and when it comes to visit we are reminded that it can really make a dull and pointless existence so full to bursting with the level of happiness we usually dare not dream. Big dreams like that are wonderful but usually hurt. Conceiving our hearts desire on such a grand scale is always possible but exhausting, and all it leaves us with is a full realisation of what we don't have.
Maybe I am corny or old fashion but I believe in the mathematics of love. quite simply 1+1=1.
I think the worst thing we all know from our own experience is that we have all known that dizzy love, that completeness. For a moment or a year, no matter how long we bask in its glow it changes our soul forever. and ever after we seek out that euphoric place we spent with another for the briefest moment.
I think the worst of it all, the absolute worst is when you know where that piece is or even who that piece is... and can do nothing to bring those 2 pieces together. All you can do is just watch and wait from a doorway or a window and try to figure out why we all make this thing happiness so difficult to keep and share...

Obi - ...all the kings horses...

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Australia Day 2008

Today is my anniversary in Poland, one year today. I can't believe it has been this long. Not in a bad way or anything, just the the calendar will start clocking over dates I have been here before.
I looked thru Google images and found a few that mean Australia Day to me.
I have been corresponding with someone of late and I am hoping we have not got our wires crossed, I want to confirm that I have said nothing negative, quite the contrary, I am just consistent and sincere as ever. I will just have to wait and see if I that is acknowledged.

The wind here tonight is kicking up to gale force, I seriously think the roof will come off, the rain and wind outside have turned my quiet street into a howling wind tunnel. I will sleep with my bedcovers over my head tonight.
Today I went to my bosses house for an obligatory lunch and it wasn't as bad as I expected. We spoke about business plans for the future of his cafe and exporting concerns. I was amazed that all my reading over the last year actually came in handy as I spouted facts and concepts from things I had read in Harvard Business Review - if you aren't into it, it can be a dry and pointless read, but because my one to one students like that kinda stuff I just fell into it all...
My house is spotlessly clean and I had a nice big meal. Today I signed all the certificates for all my students and looked at all the familiar names and remembered the faces.
Next Friday I am going to hit a bar with some friends for a big celebration. (Dunno what that is, but I am up for it!)
Working every night the next 2 weeks and I have to cover another English teacher. Speaking of which I hear there is another in town now. Good.

Cheers to all my dear friends back home celebrating the great day with a beer and a sunburn. Ah the old life, I sorta miss it sometimes.

Well I have 6 months to make a difference so wish me luck! Obi

This is a so true! - Australia Day...

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Signed Sealed Delivered

Signed my new contract today and waited impatiently as my boss fluffed around the office until he was ready to reread and sign and then came the speeches...
All in all I am free of the office now and resigning myself to the fact that it isn't easy to get a job in europe, and anyone that says it is I want their email address...
I will be sooo happy when the third week in February arrives, I am getting out of Poland for a week and I will bask in the warmth of good friends. I agreed to the cover another teacher while he is on holidays so my evenings will be filled for the next 2 weeks. That is okay, too much time alone pickles your brain. add winter and uncertainly and you have a nice new depression...
I was looking through Flickr at photos of far off places and was wondering what it was like to feel the wind on your face in some castle purrapit in southern England. Driving on the CORRECT side of the road and the availablity of fish and chips (albeit not the same as what I am used to...), to absently listen to a radio and understand everything, watch the news, chat with random people and enjoy the dialogue... it will be a long time before I can do that again.


Tonight I am having dinner with my English English teacher friends before he heads off on holidays. So pizza and beer will be the fare of the day - not that there is much more to be had here in this town other than Polish food. I asked many students and few had tried Chinese food and less Japanese food or any other cuisine not of this nation, not very adventerous gastronomically... or in any other ways. But that happens in this big world, I am just here to observe it...

Obi - Large peperoni and beer prosze!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


The Doctor was wrong when he assured me that this kidney stone would be out of me by Christmas. The pain has dropped a lot and is far less frequent and dominating, but the last two daze have been rather difficult. So back to the ibprofen and laying down to rest.
I don't have many classes at present and I am glad, though this will reflect in my pay packet at the end of the month.
My job prospect in Zielona Gora was good but they don't have enough work for me to do so they can't offer me a job. This makes the bitter pill of signing another contract with my school a little easier. I now have 6 more months to plan for success.
One more success today - I automated my mortgage, yes I know this sounds so simple but some may remember the emence difficulties I have had over the last year with automating and e-banking. Now all is working well.
I also started enrolment in Open University, I want to start a Degree in Business. I need to do a few month things to get started, I am smart enough and committed enough, two things I never really thought I had enough of to get through a university degree. Now I know I do. Now I have the perfect place, no radio no TV not much out of work to distract me from getting things done.
I am planing a short trip to Germany for a week in late Feb - it will be nice to experience a different culture and better food for a while.
Since I had my computer reformatted I have not checked all my emails - well I visited Hotmail today and got a nice surprise. It put a smile on my face as always and made me happy.
Obi limping off to bed....

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Planning on Crusie Control

Sometimes days seem to move just like a big fat man
I woke up this morning with a certain sense that gravity had increased, this is normally a seasonal holiday phenomena, but this weight of the many decisions have affected my centre of gravity this week and taken their toll, Today I have to decide if I will stay or go... I have a final meeting with my boss and he will try and sway me.
Sometimes days seem to end up where they first began
I had my meeting and over the 30 tense minutes my boss seemed to make a little sense but I wasn't biting, seeing this he pulled out the big guns and said that he would have to cancel my work visa if I left. This was a point that was too difficult to ignore and the comfortable chair then seemed like a barrel, and I was over it. So I grunted and ended the meeting and said that I would consider and speak to him by the end of the day.
The day started with this heavy meeting and a deadline, I frowned all the walk home and sat in my near empty apartment and thought. I was saved by an invite to go shopping in the big city, lacking levity in my day I keenly took up the offer from my friends. I spoke very little on the drive into the city and it was clearly apparrent that I was far away in thought marked distinctly by a frown. Efforts were made to engage me in conversation with little to no success, I was still lost in the myriad posibilities that I had considered options until that morning. A nice job in Zeilona Gora has slipped through my fingers. I can't tell you enough how the prospect of a new town would renew my outlook. But it isnt on my dance card any time soon.
The day improved with sights and shopping, but nothing for me. lunch was an absent minded operation as I still stewed over the factors and the ever dwindling options. I had a beer and a laugh and chatted a bit to escape my opressive thoughts and so I was myself again for a while. I started to talk about the problems I had and then my friend said - "You would not need a visa if you got married." I answered, "...True, but the one woman in the world I would want to marry isn't interested in me." This left a surprised look on my friends face, I would not say anymore so we continued our coffees and changed the topic.
The drive home was a relief, I needed to stare out the window and see what I had worked out in my day and what I was going to decide. All my options had been squashed by the threat of my visa being revoked. So I needed time, time to make a better plan and make a better exit from this town. I started singing a song in my mind absently...
I've got my t.v tuned to channel you, because there's nothing else that I can do
On the way home and at points throughout the day I thought about my discussion at the coffee shop and it is quite apparent to me that there is no changing my feelings, I love someone and I cannot shake it nor do I even want to. There literally is nothing else that I can do.
maybe I should set my heart for cruise control...
SUMMARY - Well it seems that I cannot just leave my employer - I have to stay because he will cancel my visa if I don't and then I cannot work at all and would have to go through the whole process again. Ruthlessly logical.
So I have a 6 month goal now. Save a lot of money and then make the move to somewhere else. I will try for Italy Spain Or France, but I think because I am not an EU citizen that it will be very difficult. We will see... Obi

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Pick me pick meee

People Hide Their Love
By: Wu-ti
[Emperor Wu of the Liang Dynasty]
Who says That it’s by my desire,

This separation, this living so far from you?
My dress still smells of the lavender you gave me: My hand still holds the letter you sent.
Round my waist I wear a double sash: I dream that it binds us both with the same-heart knot.
Did not you know that people hide their love,
Like the flower that seems too precious to be picked?

Obi weading Chinese poetry now - sideways...

Poker Face at the O.K. Negiotiation Table

High noon... more like high time. My contract finishes in a week and I had to prompt my boss to sign a new contract, I did ask for new conditions as paid hourly is not good at holiday times or cancelled classes... I also asked for a pay rise...
I dealt the cards and put on my poker face and then waited... and waited... the show down came and it was a flat unequivical no.
So I am packing up these here saddle bags and hitting the trail pardners... I will miss elements of this town but not all of it. I have applied for a billion jobs elsewhere mostly closeby, also France and Spain and Italy. I have one interview tomorrow that is all for the moment but I am expecting many more...
My work visa in Poland finishes in July and I was going to ask someone that if she was finished her schooling for the year, at about the same time, that she may like to join me for a few weeks in Spain Italy or France... my treat! We always have fun when we travel together and I am sure this summer would be no exception, so... I will ask her... I know she can't make any promises and she has a great job, but you never know what June will bring...
Just think the summer sun, the beach, sangria and me... ( well 3 outta 4 ain't bad! - hahah)
Obi Rogers - knowing when to hold em, when to fold em and when to stroll casually away...

Monday, January 14, 2008

Missing Someone

Elizabeth Barrett Browning is my current favourite to read at present, and I know someone else likes her too.
number forty-three:
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday's
Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints,—I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life!—and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Missing someone alot tonight.
Where are the tissues - Obi

One and a two and a One two twee!

There is a beautiful heart out there that worries far too much about what she says and how she says it, please don't worry. "Open thy mouth and let the words fall where they may..." Tis the only advice I can give. I know this sweetheart quite well and I know she hasn't a harsh word or thought for anyone in her body, that is why she inspires me so much.
Today is the big face off with the boss about my new contract, I honestly don't care if he signs or not, I have visions of Spanish streets or French alleyways. I have applied for a lot of jobs in these countries and so I should get some response, tho I don't hold much hope for France because they are much like the Germans, looking for feelance teachers.
Well I had my meeting with my boss and he conceded every point except the most important, the money, he will do research and then see what he can do for me.
A successful meeting? Not really, informative for him but not for me. I am still not happy with tonight's meeting, but I will see what happens with round 2...Obi

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Advice from afar...

I have been getting well meaning and caring advice from far and wide about my latest big bottom lip incident...
Someone advised I go home to Australia and enjoy the summer sun and frolic and understand everyone. Yes. This is fair advice but the most significant thing is that it takes me further away from people/a person I want to be closer to. 1,800km is so much easier to deal with than the 14,000km - sure it is the psychological factor at play there, but still it would wear a bigger hole in my heart if I left Europe. There really is nothing for me in Australia, I decided to leave nearly 2 years ago and I can't say I am ready to return, or more to the point, return alone, (anyone want to live on a tropic northern coastal beach in Australia with me?).
I have applied for jobs in Spain and France and I was thinking Normandy or Brittany would be a good place to live. Closer to where I really want to be anyway...
So there it is. This week is 'action week' lots of changes will happen this coming week. Thanks to those who made me think, and yes it is time to "get the hell outta Dodge".
So my boss will see my version of the new contract and not sign, I will be shocked if he does. I will take a job in southern Poland or I hope get an offer from Spain or France. Pack up my belongings and put them into my little red car and drive across europe to my new job and new life. A warmer place closer to my heart.
Obi - Meebee I must to learn zee french language...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Sore head

Not so much a hang over - I prevented that with 2 and a half litres of water last night, but the never ending stream of kamikaze's that were on the table - the interesting thing was that at one point we had every shot glass in the bar on our table... and the staff were hovering around to get them back.
I went out last night to an impromptu gathering of my students for an end of year congratulatory drinks. Well I went with a small night in mind but it ended up a bigger epic than 300!
This morning came and went and I woke and had a class. tho no one told me that my following class had ended. I was all prepared to have a lesson and this class was complete - see the office has no communication. Why hand me a 6 page document IN POLISH at the start of last year and expect me to know what happens or even when public holidays are... I have been caught off guard without a plan when some public holidays have come. Also if i don't work I don't get paid (an hourly rate only). My boss seems to think that it is quite okay to employ me as my primary job on a hourly rate. All his other teachers have a full time job and this is a second and they are happy, They choose to work 20 + 20 hours a week. Its a choice and within choice there is power. With me, I am just told my hours are increasing or changing - an inequity observation.
I will miss my students, I came to some point in familiarity and knowing that I will see them each week. Now I will not see them, I will miss their stories and their goings ons in their lives and I will wonder... Sniff..
Today I will start packing and planning. I have been offered a job in South Poland and one in Spain so I have to make my decisions very quickly. My new conditions and pay rise will be a lot for my boss to swallow, but if he is smart he will sign it accept it and I will stay and finish things, if not he will be caught with his pants down... Obi making plans...

Friday, January 11, 2008

Locked & Loaded

I have kept note all year of the inappropriate behaviours from my employer, much the the point, his hypocritical actions and view of me as a machine. I cannot maintain 42 contact hours a week. This is 45 min classes with the extra time devoted to research and preparation, (15 minutes)

A normal teacher in this job does about 18 - 28 hours a week, so now you can see the difference. I was quite ill this year as most of you know, a huge kidney stone that had me bed ridden for many days. But still my boss increased my working hours.
For him it is all about money and I understand this, but you don't work to death your best meal ticket do you?
So with the only thing that he hold important in mind, I have an alternative contract in mind for this new year. More money for me. Also to cover my bets that he throws the baby out with the bath water, I have been applying for new jobs with some modest success.
Tonight the final class will meet to have a drink for a successful year finished... it is a night for congratulations... Obi

Monday, January 07, 2008


I took some advice from a good friend today. The final point at the end of the discussion was that I knew what made me unhappy quite clearly now I had to apply the reverse to the situation and see what makes me happy. The ol' Sherlock Holmes deductive reasoning trick!
I took today off work because I need a day to think and just be miserable. I am good at that lately. So I thought a lot and chatted and even had a chin wag with a English Teacher friends here, he is from north London I think, anyway - I just need to focus on the positive... Plan for a holiday...
Maybe Ireland as a friend of mine has suggested I go visit her.
The luck of the Irish!~ O'Obi!


Why stay here in Poland? I have just on finished my contract and I am sick and tired of the snow here. In fact I am sick and tired of everything this week. I would have gone for a drive if my car wasn't frozen. Payday is this week and I will be happy to see some cash.
Some people have been complaining that I am hard to contact, these people have my MSN and my ICQ numbers and can easily leave messages online for me. Email is the best way.
My laptop has audio problems and it does not allow me to send and recieve Skype messages at the moment. If I could find someone that would fix my computer that way I want it then it would have been done ages ago, but computer technician here are just too... I dunno.
Most things to organise are a pain in the ass, like making appointments, I cant get the girls in the office to do much for me, as they are over worked. I even need to go to the dentist and I cant find someone to recommend a good one in town. I can't even get people to do stuff for me for money...
I need to get my car to the mechanic and to do that I have to get it to start... a vicious circle. My contract is up in 2 weeks, so it is all or nothing. Siiigh - Obi has insomnia...

Saturday, January 05, 2008


Well its 23:37 and my day is over, I worked this morning and wrote a story for a co worker who had to submit some creative writing, I quite like losing myself in writing. Maybe I will retire and write a book...
The flu has lost its grip on me and I am glad, the whole dragging around a box of tissues was just so last year...
In the big scheme of life I achieved a big fat zero today, but bummed around at home and looked at the -15 outside, tho I must say I did go for a walk today. there is no snow here at present so it is just the coldness. My car didnt start yesterday and that is the 3rd day in a row, I am starting to get shitty about that. I may need to call in Captain K to rescue me or point out something completely stupid that I am doing...
Well I have no witty insights today tho I must add the nap I had today was great, I must have needed it.

Obi off to sleep...

Friday, January 04, 2008

Friday Friday Keep ya nose Tidy!

The woosh of the truck outside has me hypnotised. I am sitting comfortably inside knowing the strong winds outside are pushing the wind chill past -15.
I couldn't start my car thursday morning, the cold had done its work on the motor, now I tried to start it, with no success, but this little bunny is from a country that has no appreciable snow of any kind, I think I was 9 before I went to the mountains the first time and saw snow... I digress...
I jumped in a taxi and had a modest class of 2 students, seems the new year bear has yet to release it's hibernating grip on the rest of my students. Ironically I learnt today from a conversation with my boss, that the Company I am contracted to has yet to pay a bill and I have been there more than 3 months. I was quite dismayed at that fact. My conversation with my boss wondered into other topics and I gleened his plans for the new year and he all but encouraged me to go on holiday in February for a few weeks. This I may do but it really is up to him to actually have work for me to do and in this regard he is letting me down. I certainly could go to germany and visit some dear friends but I am reluctant to go out of my frantic saving habit... Ya never know when you need money.
My car needs some maintainence and I am useless with a wrench, so I will have to trust that mechanic again that didn't fix my car the first time.
Hairstyles and clothes for that matter in this country are really quite odd. The hairstyles hairdressers are dumb enough to wear have diagonal fringes and short stark bobs and odd tinting, as much as to say to their clientel, LOOK I CANT DO THIS TO YOUR HAIR AS WELL!!
Clothes are strange and some of the patterns and materials used, well, you really have to question their motives, the result is tragic and often post tram driver chic is the target.
I stick to the jeans and nice shirts thing and try not to be neon as aI have seen people here wear in the middle of winter.
Today I have a MBA student class discussing Geert Hofstede. An interesting man and his work is great for class based discussion: Comparitive national and business cultures.
I was thinking about a certain someone who must be flittering across the Atlantic and home by now. Snow is snow no matter where you go, but hey - at least your feet will be warm and fashionable in new Ugg boots! - Obi

Thursday, January 03, 2008

...but is she a good hairdresser??...

A few months back I asked a friend of mine whether he could recommend a good hairdresser. I had had a few nasty encounters with the cruelest cut in the town. I even ask my dear old dad when he visited would cut my hair properly, he is a retired barber, and even my mum was a hairdresser, so you see it is in my blood so to speak.
"So Kzysztof. Can you recommend any hairdresser in town?", I ask.
"Oh yes I can... (the directions to the salon).", he replied
"So is she good?" I ask.
"Oh yes she is very beautiful!....", he answered confidently.
"eh, okay, but is she a good hairdresser?", I ask again...
"...hmmm I dunno..."
I asked another 3 times until he came up with a different answer.
"So is she a good hairdresser?". I ask...
"Yes I think so, she is my cousin...",
I rolled my eyes and whinced and asked the obvious...
"Does she cut your hair?", I ask
"No, my mum cuts mine...", he said matter of factly - ( and it showed)

So the moral of this story kids is don't ask a deaf guy his music preference, he will say "anything, but play it loud!"
I did find a good hairdresser and she is gorgeous.... AND cuts hair very well. I saw her today and got a beard trim - FOR FREE! So I am happy!

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

2008 and feeling GREAT!

Well I woke this morning to a new year and a whole list of plans I wanna make happen, first and foremost I wanna know who is cutting the crusts off the cucumber sandwiches!
No hang over for me today just another bout of coughing and some more medication. Ya see, I wasn't strong or healthy enough to go outside this week and so I was happy to spend NYE on the couch watching DVDs and making webpages stuff and things...
I am rather keen to get started on my many plans, first of all getting this contract signed and outta the way and the sign a new lease on my apartment. Well at least a month to month lease, I have no idea what will happen.
Hearing was optional today with clogged sinuses. But that is okay I only play music LOUD!
I will start the washing machine soon and get things ready for tomorrow's classes.
The new improved 2008 Obi...

I - Obi...