Just one of the team building, learn about each other, fun things we did on my work retreat yesterday. I’m basically a day behind reporting from Nashvegas, so I don’t think I can consider this “live”. Most of the day yesterday was very work centric. Up early (hangover and all), checking in on my normal daily tasks, and putting the game-face on to head downtown early-ish for a full day of presentations and activities.
Home base was a conference room on the 20th floor of the “WeWork” building downtown. The first event of the day was the photographer. Headshots in a courtyard between buildings across the street. Picture this.. it’s 9AM and already like 85 degrees and humid as all get out. Everyone was in their suits and it was sweaty (except for me, I don’t sweat). I kid.. it really wasn’t that bad. They had breakfast brought in and then we had introductions, which made me extremely nervous for some reason. That’s where the “two truths and a lie” came in. As soon as they said we were to include that at the end of our intro, my heart started to pound. What on earth could I make up about my self or my life. Anyone who has ever played poker or “mafia” with me knows I have no poker face.
They went clockwise around the table and I was dead last, which is the worst because I had to deal with the thoughts in my brain the whole time other people were talking and could not really enjoy the game. I did a quick intro of who I was and how I was introduced to the company and then when it came to my two truths and a lie I basically said..
“Well, I am 44 years old. I once lived in London for a year and I’m currently getting a Masters of Fine Arts in Writing.”
One of the dudes was like, “there is no way you are 44”. Hahaha! (Exactly the reaction a 44 year old wants to get).
I looked over at my boss who knows I am in school and he said, “I can’t say anything because I know too much.” Then someone said “Is it London”, and I smiled. “Yup, London is a Lie”. No need to draw things out longer than they need to be.
I could say more about being 44. I could write a whole post about being the oldest person at this retreat, or having the oldest children of the group, or having just live through a whole lot more life drama. I can’t say I feel the same as I did when I was 34, because I definitely don’t. Staying fit is tougher. My body and my brain get tired in ways I don’t think you can describe to a young person. That’s not me trying to be old and wise or something. It’s just me pointing out how I feel now versus how I felt back then.
These people are not that much younger than me, but they seem to be. They seem to have a lot of ambition and drive and whatever that quality is that makes people a success. Call it Grit or stamina or internal motivation. It’s evident in just about every one of the people on this team. I know I’m different and I’m not sure I ever had that quality they seem to possess, but I think my need to do good work and impress people and get a little positive feedback probably makes it appear as though I do.
I never really intended to get on this tangent topic but sometimes one thing leads to the next and “there you are”. Perhaps I’ll go a little deeper on the dynamics I have found myself in with a very Silicone Valley role. A world that I feel in some ways that I was built for, and other ways, I’ve been fighting my whole life to maintain balance around. An analytical brain with a soul that just wants to write poetry. What is a girl supposed to do with that? (Make money and write poetry – that’s what!).
Anyway, late in the afternoon we broke from the conference room as they had a few private meetings they needed to have and a group of us walked two blocks to Broadway. Now the Nashvillian that I sat next to on the plane told me about “Honkey Tonk”, but you just don’t really know how much of a thing it is until you see it. Bars, 4 stories tall, live bands and music on every floor, one right next to the other. Drunk people everywhere. Bachelorette parties, country dancing, singing, laughing – and it was only like 3:30 in the afternoon.
We spent a little time in one place, called the “Honkey Tonk” and it was hopping. After that, we walked to the end of that Broadway strip (which was a river), and up to the 4th floor of that building to sit and look out over the river. We got stuck there for about 1.5 hours because it started pouring down rain.
It was that delay that ruined my master plan to get to dinner at the “Burger Up” which was near the Air Bnb we were staying at.
By the time we got back to “the office” people were talking about going somewhere more upscale and we ended up at a very nice Chinese restaurant (the nicest I’ve ever been to), where we ordered just a crap-ton of food to share family style. It was seriously a lot of food.
Here’s what I have to say about that… so much food, and one of the only times ever where every entree was so much better than the apps. The apps were seriously mediocre. It’s interesting cuz that typically my favorite part of any nice meal. I’m not a very good blogger cuz I can’t even say where we were. I don’t recall. If it comes up in the future.. I’ll have to write it down for posterity.
I did get a picture of the Peking duck we ordered. I’ve never had THAT before. By the time it arrived I was so full from all the other food I could barely have any of it. But I powered through. It was pretty tasty.
By the time we arrived back at “home”, I was seriously wiped out from the day. I changed into my pajamas and called my sweetie and then crashed hard. It was a pretty full day indeed. I knew the morning would be coming soon and another extremely overcrowded day involving a lot more social interaction, a boat, and two flights to get home-home.
Stay tuned for the conclusion to this action packed trip! The only thing missing will be more lies. 😜
The Nash-saga Contines,