Well and good as that all is, however, I have something kind of amusing to announce. Even though I haven't been home from Toronto for a full week yet, we've already discussed (to a reasonably solid conclusion) next time. To make it easier (and somewhat more interesting) though, I'll copy and paste the chat log into here:
(5:45:35pm) Karadur: Can I be slightly preemptive again now? Both Manoah and I (out of people I've asked at work) agree that I should be able to request time off again in February without difficulty, so I'd kind of like to work out exactly (or approximately) when right now, and ask Mary at an appropriate point in the future, since she's still there
Karadur: I think seven days would work nicely again, but as I told you while I was still there, I'd like to have an extra day next time, if possible, to bake more for the party than I did before. As such, if the next one is on the 16th, how would the 13th to 21st sound to you? Technically it would actually be the 12th to 21st, because I'll probably still be getting Tuesdays and Thursdays off then, but that would presumably be beneficial, depending on exactly what things are selected for baking...
Karadur: Also, did you get that "Well More Positive" email? I still don't expect to be able to discuss what was said in there / to receive a reply until you're back from Chicago and have some spare time again, but I would like to know that you at least received it
Karadur: ...and finally, on a slightly different note, I saw [redacted] / FriedCanine (if he still goes by that name) at work last night, and he told me that I should email him, since I don't have Facebook or anything like that. I intend to, but if his interests are still the same as I knew them to be before, that might be one more person interested in attending a furmeet here
(6:17:14pm) Dan Skunk: Hi. Just switched to my phone. Going to visit my Grandma.
Karadur: Oh, alright. Did you get those four messages?
Karadur: (well, presumably yes...)
Dan Skunk: Not on the phone but I emailed it to myself.
Karadur: Oh, well that sounds convenient
Karadur: I'm writing a LiveJournal entry before I leave for work though, so I'm going to continue with that
Karadur: There haven't been many changes there. Both Mary and Manoah are still around, and apart from a bit of friction between them (which I've yet to see for myself), things are about how they were when I left
Dan Skunk: I didn't get a chance to read all of your email yet either, sorry. Was out all yesterday and sleepy most of today.
Karadur: Oh, that's alright. It was quite long...
Dan Skunk: I'll get to it. Just have to not be distracted and seeing people.
Karadur: There is no rush
Karadur: At this point, I'm fine with waiting until you're back at home (after you've gone to Chicago), and have some free time to go through it
Dan Skunk: Oh. Alright.
Dan Skunk: Too bad you weren't visiting for 2 weeks. I'd bring you with me.
Karadur: I would've liked to do that, but one difficulty I realized on Wednesday or Thursday (probably Thursday) is that my passport was still at home, locked away in my room
Karadur: It would be difficult to cross the border without that :x
Dan Skunk: We would pass Chatham on the way to Chicago so no problem. :)
Karadur: *shrug* I think if it worked out, it would still be tricky. I'd have to arrange for somebody to be waiting at the bus station with my passport, as it's probably too far from the house to walk there and back...
Dan Skunk: I'm ok with any time you want to visit.
Dan Skunk: Extra day is fine.
Dan Skunk: I've not talked to friedcanine for a while.
Karadur: I'm still not going to ask Mary right away, but whenever I do, five days is the minimum I'll ask for, and seven will be the most...
Karadur: Nor have I. We talked for a bit back in 2008, but last night was the first time I think I've seen him since then
Karadur: And to correct the other statement above, eight would be the most. If she gives me eight, I'll actually take nine, but it would be kind of silly to ask to have a day off that I'm not scheduled to work on normally
Karadur: I do remember telling you about him back when you first contacted me about your old Ontario Furries listing though..
Dan Skunk: I remembered the name.
Karadur: So that's done, with ~15 minutes to spare...
Karadur: Approximately 1,700 words on what amounts to just a few things today, and yesterday, ~3,800 just detailing what happened between Monday evening and Wednesday morning before we went to bed last week, with a few forgotten details to add now. I have a lot to say...
Dan Skunk: He's on the web site now.
Dan Skunk: Wow.
Karadur: Oh, and when I said "that's done" I was referring to the LiveJournal entry. I have six, possibly seven different people I need to send emails to, and he's one, but I haven't been able to write any yet...
Karadur: On the same topic of large numbers of things: Manoah told us last night about something that will be happening later tonight. There will be a wedding reception / party held at the hall just over from work, and for that, whoever is in charge will be coming in around 10~10:30 to order 100 tacos - 50 hard and 50 soft. I am genuinely looking forward to that, because it's never happened before...
Dan Skunk: Yay, catering. :)
February 12th / 13th to the 21st, yes? I have more reasons to believe that I would be granted that time off than not too, right? Right now it's only a matter of being patient. If I see Mary before January, I'll bring it up at an appropriate time then, and if I don't, I'll stop in on our way out to get groceries or somesuch one week, and ask her much like I did last time. It's really hard to believe how things are going now, compared to the way they were before. Several weeks prior to going away at the beginning of this month, I really, seriously doubted that I could go there again, because it seemed like more trouble than it was worth. Now, well... that's pretty much completely reversed. That's not the only thing of interest in that chat log though, which is why I posted the whole thing. Another part is him saying "Too bad you weren't visiting for 2 weeks. I'd bring you with me." The destination in this case, as noted before, would be MFF. I was thinking about / talking to myself about it on the way to work last night, and came to the decision that going with him to try and help out there would be fun, even though it would put me at risk of running into a certain past friend. It's also really something to think that if I had been there for two weeks this time, I might very well have gone with him, passport being at home aside. Could that happen at some point in the future? Yes, definitely, but without, say, not asking for any time off throughout the rest of the year, then requesting two or three weeks in November, it might be a bit difficult. I got away with less when I went before though, right? I will have to think about it, because that is something I'd like to do sooner or later. Moving on again now, notice the two ":)" at the end of two of the things he said. That's a first, at least between the two of us. Lastly, see that line from him that says "I'm ok with any time you want to visit"? Maybe I'm getting more out of that than he intended, but that's really cool, and I like it. I still wouldn't just randomly invite myself there one day - buy a train ticket, make the three hour trip, and show up in the lobby (or at their door, if I'm lucky) without any warning, but the fact that we're now into "I'm okay with whatever works for you" is really neat.
On a slightly different note now, there are two things that happened at work last night which I think I will end this entry with. First, conversation between Manoah and I somehow got around to me telling him why I try not to get angry, much like I told him before. I said that was the reason that in spite of how much Laura using the phone when she shouldn't have bothered me, I didn't say anything. He responded by telling me that while I might not like to hear it, I needed to change, because otherwise people would just keep taking advantage of me, and I'd be the one left feeling bad about it. That kind of stung for a bit, but eventually I had a realization, and responded to him by saying the following: maybe I did take what he said a little too personally, but I don't think I should be at fault for being non-confrontational. If and when it gets to the point where I'm constantly using that as an excuse, then yes, something would have to be done about that, but for the moment, that's just how I am. In all honesty I'm trying to be more assertive too, but in that situation with Laura, it gets a bit tricky, because she's a manager, and I don't want to be insubordinate. He made another good (cliched) point by saying "two wrongs don't make a right" though, so we'll see what happens tomorrow, as she's the closing manager then. As for the other, at the end of the night, Manoah started to ask me some questions about his mom's computer - in a nutshell, the one she has now stopped working a few days ago, and she wants to replace it with one she can hook up to their TV, but neither of them know if size would be a factor. Without so much as giving me a chance to start responding, however, Tom comes up and starts going off with his opinions, and I just... had enough then. I frowned, facepalmed (is that a word?), and turned away, not bothering to say anything else. After a short time, I did say that I didn't see the point to being asked if everybody else was going to provide the answer (being non-confrontational at play, it seems), and brilliant Tom responded with (in a non-condescending way) "If you have an answer, then why not say it?". I would have, had you not butted in, Tom. He then went outside to take the cardboard and garbage out, and I took the opportunity to express my aggravation to Manoah. He said he felt kind of the same way, and that was pretty well it until we were outside, and Tom had taken off to go home. It was only then that I could finally answer Manoah's question - I said that the size of the computer shouldn't matter, so long as it's kept ventilated, and it can handle whatever his mom needs it for, and that was it. We talked about other things for a little while longer, and then his sister came by to pick him up, offering me a ride as well, but I said no, thanks, and walked home, because there was no need for a ride home then.
At any rate, there are muffins downstairs now, and I'd like to have a few of those as a snack before I leave for work, so this is all done. I still have an hour left, so maybe I could get started with emails now, and have more time for whatever else seems interesting (probably Superstar Saga) when I get home. I really need to take care of them anyway...