Jun 20, 2009

A Week in Review

Monday: I wake up at 5am to catch the 7.13 Eurostar to London. For the first hour of the journey, I try to be good and look at colourful slides on the pharma industry. When my eyes start glazing over I give up and watch 2 episodes of Damages, trying to figure out who the Glenn Close character most reminds me of.

Bleary-eyed, I walk into my team's "kick-off" meeting already wishing the day was over. We do the obligatory tour de table description of personality type / development goals / team norms and then get to the substance. Which is when I realize everybody's talking in molecule names and I'm in big, big trouble.

Tuesday: I discover Itsu at lunch. I fall in love with Itsu. Especially that low-fat Japanese duck soup. I decide that maybe in my future reincarnation I could be opening up Itsu branches all over Paris.

Wednesday: We have a big work dinner to celebrate a team member's rise to partnership. The guy is my age, happily married, and loaded, and he keeps complaining about how he only managed to squeeze in two 10Ks and one karate training this week. This is probably meant to impress, but I can't help thinking it's sad that he feels it would be so shameful to pass for just a regular guy.

Thursday: I get into work early, after only 4hrs of sleep, because I've been asked to "get comfortable" with some scary-looking financial model the manager's decided to dump on my lap. Turns out this model, built by a small army of junior consultants with geeky engineering degrees, has several major errors in it and I get yelled at because I don't catch them all within the first half hour. Give me a break, it's not quite "Where's Waldo"...

Friday: INSEAD party time, something I've been looking forward to all week. When I get there, a friend of mine who's also working at BM tells me he quit that very afternoon. Although I knew he'd been unhappy, the news throws me because he's one of the most serious, ambitious guys I know. To be honest, I'm a bit jealous.

Later, during a tearful chat on the rooftop terrace, my friend Banker Girl tells me that girls like us are destined to remain stuck in high-status, high-stress jobs that make us miserable, because we'll never be satisfied with anything else. One third of me is sad that my friend is feeling so low, one third is worried she might be right, and the final third wants to slap her. Instead, I grab a taxi back to the hotel. Inside I'm reeling, I want to go home, and I wish the Boy was here.

Saturday: The blues (or Audrey's reds) are still with me when I wake up this morning, so I head over to the park for a run. Seeing as I haven't exercised in longer than I'd like to remember, the run does not go well, but at least I'm moving. Then I go cheer myself up at the bookstore, and pick up one of the Penguin notebooks so I can scribble this post from a nearby Starbucks. And I take my time, too, since there's a Tamil protest keeping me from crossing the street back to my hotel.

So that was my week, folks. Let's see how the next one goes.

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