Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Mexico Update

I had a meeting with the head of HR today. I really thought it was going to be the end all of the process - I figured she was here to tell me yay or nay.

Alas, I'm still drudging through the process.

Which I suppose is better than being told that I'm not going, but in reality the suspense is killing me. I can't even watch suspense or horror movies because it puts my stomach in knots. I just get too tense. This is worse than watching the exorcist.

The purpose of the meeting today was to talk through some of the obstacles and really settle her mind about my committment to the process and make sure expectations are managed appropriately. As much as my husband will be PO'd about this - the meeting didn't meet my expectations at all. I wanted to come out with specific objections to overcome as well as a defined timeframe - but she was reluctant to do so despite my pressing.

What did occur is that in her mind, although its unclear the position that is available is the absolute right position for me, I am a good candidate for the ex-patriate process. I told her there are three things that she should never worry about when dealing with me.
  1. Committment
  2. Attitude
  3. Flexibility

Aside from my stunning beauty and amazing technical expertise, those items are three of my strong suits.

The only action that came from this meeting is that I'm going to be speaking with a expat consulting firm to do an assessment of readiness, then after that will be a site visit. I won't know until after the site visit if its official or not. In my mind, that pushes our ETD out to August instead of June/July.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Vegas Baby!

Aside from the fact that Troy hated Vegas, we had a good trip. He just doesn't understand the concept of gambling and isn't much of a social flutterby type of guy. So the flashing lights and outrageous people irratated him more than anything. And his feet hurt from walking too much. Poor baby. Try walking the same amount in 4 inch hot pink heels.

The business portion of the trip was well done - meetings and training and rah rah sessions, along with a serioulsy elaborate customer reception on Tuesday night (customers were there visiting ConExpo/ConAgg - which is the largest trade show in Vegas). The best pasta I've had in a while. YUMMY! Of course the accomodations were supurb. Love the venetian. Kinda snooty, but really nice!

We caught a show (Zumanity - the other side of Cirque de Soliel). The show was actually pretty darn good - aside from the dark fetishes they explored. Erotic, funny and entertaining - hey, it is Cirque de Soliel. There were also prosthetic penises involved which were hilarious.

We also gambled a bit (me more than Troy) and ate and drank a lot. Mad props to Pat for letting us hang with his dad, brother and friend on Wednesday night - hopefully they did better betting on the Big Dance than they did at the BlackJack tables!

I won $150 the first night there playing blackjack - and gave it all back over the course of the days after that. We actually broke even - aside from the shopping at Lacoste and Tiffany's :)

I love Vegas. I think its the energy of people letting loose and having fun. It could be the lights too - I like sparkley things. Of course, I'm a bit naive (I admit it!)- so I choose not to see the plethora of strippers/cheating/prostitues/drug use - that would ruin it all for me!

Friday, March 11, 2005

Note to Everyone Else

A decision should be made sometime in the next week or so about my future career move. It looks like either:
  • I'll be moving to Mexico and doing the Mexican Concrete Hat Dance


  • I'll be moving somewhere else, maybe making struedel or brats.

Either way, it would be a good deal. Troy really is pushing for Mexico - which is funny since he really was pushing for Europe in the beginning.

In the meantime we'll be having our National Sales Meeting in Vegas, BABY!

I 'm ectatic! Not only is it free, but its also 80 degrees there right now. RIGHT ON BABY! Let it ride! Momma needs a new pair of shoes!

Note to Beth

I keep on trying to post a comment - and it tells me Blog site not found! ARGH!

In response to the last couple of posts:

1. That Rocks! I was wondering if that was the Diana you were talking about!
2. Have fun in NYC
3. What happened to Derek? I thought you were soul mates?

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Another Mexico Update

I've figured out that it is much more effective to voice your concerns to a Senior Vice President than to vent in anger in a blog. Blogging feels good, especially if you do it right away - but if you calm down and look at the situation rationally, and then talk to someone with power things actually might get done.

I had a quick meeting with our SVP today about my desires - and he expressed his concerns about the position not being challenging enough and not bringing enough value to Holcim US upon my return. We talked about that amongst other things, and essentially I made it known to him that I wanted the experience abroad (something I couldn't get at some other lab in the US) and I thought the value of the international assignment couldn't just be measured in what my job responsibilities are. All and all a positive conversation - at the end of which he said "well, you're probably going to go".....

Of course, since he's the SVP, he can always change his mind for whatever reason. I do however think the concerns he does have are valid - and I do believe him to be a very fair and reasonable man. So whatever the decision is I'll be down with.

Hopefully we'll know soon.......

Monday, March 07, 2005

Mexico Update

Funny - there is no update! Surprise!

But, I do have some updates on my feelings. Truth be told, I feel kind of jipped. I really thought the potential of doing an international assignment was real. In fact, its one of the reasons I chose this company out of college instead of the other offers I had - even though the other companies had higher salaries.

I suspect if I had chosen to stick to my guns and push for a process engineers position instead of taking the marketing route, I would have many many more opportunities to work abroad. I truly think that this company (and I'm sure others too) have a tendency to favor those in a "technical" role. Whether people chose to admit it or not, those who work in a plant and have technical backgrounds devalue the intelligence and gifts that it takes to work for a Sales Group - they inherently think that we're not as smart as they are.

Also, I think in addition to the above predjudice is the theory that money (for an international assignment) is better spent on someone who has the potential to rise to a plant manager - which will have more effect on the companies bottom line than someone in sales and marketing. So there are no qualms about providing said manufacturing people with more opportunities.

Am I bitter? YES! Of course I'm bitter! If you saw a wonderful opportunity slipping away when you knew you were highly able to take on the task, definitely smart and intelligent, and WORTH it, wouldn't you be bitter too?

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Jeep Jeep you stink......

Pink Pink you stink. Somehow I transformed that saying into JEEP JEEP YOU STINK. I'm not sure how it happened. Sometimes its best just to not try to figure me out.

Anyway. Yes, we have a Jeep Wrangler. It has a personalized license plate. JPSTER. Corny, yes, but I like it that way. Troy had it as his primary vehicle when we met. I even learned how to drive it - my first stick shift! Part of the Sig Tau tradition in Houghton was taking Jeeps and other 4WD vehicles out on the old logging roads and gallivanting through the mud. We never got stuck, but it was always fun when someone did - or when someone's little Ford went through water too deep and sucked it up the intake :)

There's even a "club". People with Jeeps wave to each other. Whoever has the lowest scoring Jeep waves first. Its so darn friendly. That initially was my favorite part of being a Jeep owner. I think last time I figured we had a score about 60. Not too shabby! Check out the rules at

The little Jeep that could made it out to CO (Keith and Troy drove it out together. I imagine it wasn't the most comfortable 21 hour drive, but it could have been worse). It got a face lift (and a suspension and body lift!) in order to brave the 4WL rock crawlin' of Colorado. We loved traipsing through the mountains! I was only scared once when Troy almost drove off a cliff going down a trail he didn't know. Seriously scared the crap out of me.

Jeep owners in Colorado don't wave either. Mostly because if they kept that up, you'd literally be waving every two seconds down the street. I swear thats the highest per capita population of Jeeps in the USA. And there are lots of pimped out Jeeps to climb mountains with. I think people had a hard time determining who had to wave first.

We had it transported back to MI (along with my truck). After I got a company car, we decided to make it a FUN vehicle. And we promised to never ever sell it so our kids will A) learn how to drive a stick and B) have a cool vehicle to cruise around town. Lets face it, there’s not many things much more fun than driving with a obnoxiously loud stereo with the top down on a warm sunny day!!!

Every time we get a little bit in debt and get freaked out, we talk about selling the Jeep.

Every time we get back in the Jeep, we wonder why we talk about selling it.

It will be officially paid off this summer. I’m pretty sure it’s the first vehicle either of us have owned, free and clear. We wish we had more time to use it for what it’s built, but we don’t have the time. Really though, we love that vehicle, and even if it’s not muddy all the time, we’re still Jeepers through and through.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Bonus Bonus

Supply and demand baby! I get my second bonus this year next Thursday. I like being able to have a little cushion instead of scrounging. It makes me much happier :)