Sunday, May 29, 2011

Life as a Minnesooootan

I moved to Minneapolis, MN in February to start my career out of college. Moving here was a web of emotions ranging from excitement, happiness, fear, and stress. I was excited about the next chapter of my life and taking advantage of having my own money. I felt happy and blessed to land a good job in the current economy. I was scared of what lied ahead... I was moving to a city I've only been in for 20 hours during my interview back in November with no close friends. I was stressed with the new responsibilities of being a "grown up". I put that in quotations because I still find it hard to believe that I am one. I don't know how to be a grown up. There isn't really a manual on how to lead an adult life. All I ever known before me was how to be a kid and dependent. So what do I do now that I have my own apartment to worry about, bills upon bills to be paid, and a dependent (Mochi). I love checking my mail... it's like Christmas day every time I get a card from a friend or my online shopping arrives. However, bills have sucked the fun out of checking the mail. Xcel energy. Centerpoint. Comcast. My most loyal senders. I created a budget sheet on google to keep track of my expenses and keep myself in check.

Minneapolis is a great city. I love the young professional vibe. I love the harmonious marriage of of a modern city to natural beauty. Snow is actually very beautiful and deserves to admired from a window or in pictures. I live across from Lake Calhoun which is quite the happening spot when it warms up. In Minnesotan, warming up translates to above 50 degrees. It's becoming a problem when I'm talking to be friends back in TX and I tell them how nice and warm it is outside today.... at 60 degrees. That's a chilly day in El Tejas. I'm adjusting to the city well... there's great food and I'm active in the Yelp Community here. The hardest adjustment for me is dealing with people I'm not use to. I'm use to people being either genuinely nice or direct and honest. The Minnesota "nice" and the fakey fakey corporate culture is something to get use to. A good and a bad thing is that I started with a "class" of 8 others. They become your only friends here which is a blessing and a curse. I'm finding it difficult to be myself when I'm worried about portraying a professional, good image at work.

I made a list of goals for myself for 2011 that's sitting right at my fridge.

- Run a marathon
For Mother's day, I signed up for Race for the Cure. I was determined to run and train for something small (5K) and hopefully be able to run a marathon with my marathon-loving cousins by the end of the year. The day before Race for the Cure, I realized that I had only run once since I signed up back in March. Shame shame. I went on the walk instead. It's still a work in progress. It's hard to be motivate to run after work when all you want to do is snuggle in your pj's watching Glee, Modern Family, or How I Met Your Mother with a greasy piece of fried chicken followed by a nice scoop of Haagen Dazs vanilla bean ice cream topped with oreo cookie bits.... or maybe that's just me. The weather is warming up outside and these freaking Minnesotans are making me feel like a piece of lard when I see them running outside in their cute work out gear while I'm growing my buddha belly. Ok, running shoes, time to come out of the closet!

- Lose 10 lbs
See above. Well considering that I haven't lost or gain weight since my initial weight gain upon my return from HK I think this is a semi-win. At least I'm not gaining!

✓ Take the GMAT 
It's amazing how this baby can make you feel incredibly dumb. Everything on the GMAT is stuff you learned in grade school from Middle School to High School. The hardest math concept on there is geometry. But somehow... this test is so hard. Thanks to my awesome company, they pay for employees to take a Princeston Review GMAT course and the GMAT test. I finished the course in mid-May and took the test last week. I saw significant improves from my initial practice test but still not good enough to get into my dream school(s). Looks like a retake is in my future or a sign to go back to college. Please?

- Travel to another country
Studying abroad in HK has ignited the fire of my passion for traveling. I want to visit HK again or maybe trek to Europe. But Mr. Tuition Loan, Xcel Energy, Comcast, Apartment Complex, Credit Card and T-Mobile is standing in the way. This might have to defer to 2012.

- Pay off cc bill and pay tuition loans on time
According to my handy dandy budget sheet, it looks like I'll be CC debt free in September. Tuition loans are a whole other story... they've got be on a ball and chain for at least 10 years. This is where I agree with my European brothas and sistas that I met abroad when they scoffed and pointed their nose up at Americans for paying for education. Oh well, you win some  you lose some.

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