Moon over Havana

September 7th, 2023

4:20 AM

Jason is waiting in front of the 10 stories building on the Constructors’ Boulevard with a medium size-suitcase and a small bouquet of 3 strings of Lily of the Valley, in front of a dark windows fully electrical SUV.

She is slowly opening the armed building door, while carrying her own suitcase and a small handbag and she smiles at him. Her face lights up with every step she makes.

At this point he cannot contain his smile either and showing his white perfect young teeth, even if he is past 40 of age, he leans forward to kiss her. After brushing his hand gently through her hair, he leans to help her put the suitcase in the trunk of the car, while the driver carefully places his next to hers.

Under the discreet stare of the driver, they share another long kiss and slide on the back seat of the car, pulling up the separator, while the car starts moving.

  • “It’s been 5 years since I haven’t seen you”, says Jason, but you haven’t changed a bit.

Of course she has. She has way over 20 pounds more than when they first met, but she was barely 20ish then. Now she is a mom of three… from which two are his.

Ok, the first one, Josie, is definitely his. As for Lia, we can say with reasonable certainty that she had a bit of divine intervention in coming on this planet.

Yet she is still looking very attractive in his eyes. Especially now after having her new Business degree and owning her own company. For Jason love was passing too much through his brain…

  • “You don’t look too bad yourself either”, blushes Moon. “I must admit you really took me by surprise with this one week escapade. How’s Meredith, btw?
  • “She is at home with.. (wait I forgot the name of the child that Jason had with Meredith, let’s hope he didn’t also). C’mon you know we’ve been separated for more than 2 years now, since she found out I was seeing Klara. Why you had to twist the knife in my wound?”
  • “Because you don’t admit it even to yourself that you simply cannot be “the man of one woman”. You are just not built monogamous.”
  • “I’m with you, right now. Let’s enjoy it, please.”

And they share another long kiss, with their hands exploring a little bit more, through the clothes.

In the heat of the moment, while carefully trying to take his light jacket off, apparently not as careful as needed, something fell from one of the pockets. Instead of showing signs of being caught off guard, he raises to the occasion and takes Moon’s hand into his, bringing into the light the ring that she had on her finger.

  • “I couldn’t take it off. I know he died. I know it’s been more than one year already, but Jesus will always be in my heart and for us flying now to his home country made me even more emotional. You know I loved him and you also know that it’s always been…”
  • “Please don’t say it”, stopping her with a kiss.
  • “Just listen!”
  • “I have waited for too long. From the first moment I saw you, I knew you will be the “last one”. I have always known that you are the one I’m going to grow old next to. I’ve had my share of affairs, yes, some you know about, some you don’t… some more passionate or dramatic than others, but a piece of my heart has always been with you, no matter where you were and with whom. I was shocked when I learned that Jesus died, but in the same moment I knew I want to be Ben’s father also.”

While the car was about to park in front of the airport, she hears him say:

  • “Moon, will you marry me?”

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Spring 2021

Too much said spring, it’s 7°C outside and feels like 4°C even if it’s sunny..

Yesterday I had my ACCA remotely invigilated CBE session exam for Audit and Assurance. With baby and daddy upstairs… because baby is sick and day-care is closed anyway for 3 weeks due to lockdown.

As for the exam, either I’m too naive or I really did study the best for this exam (I mean, I did start studying for it in October..) because I finished it with the feeling that I did everything, I mean, I don’t know of anything that I did wrong… but for an ACCA exam if you think you did everything you should reasonably expect a 75-80% result… besides, it was the most narrative exam, zero calculations, and I didn’t have the time to check again everything for spellings and I’m painfully aware that my English grammar is not perfect…

So, in order to tie my knowledge-loose-ends I’m adding to my to-do plan for 2021 to take some English classes and pass the IELTS exam with a C level.

And I also want to resume my Czech classes, after passing the language exam for the residency paper last year I remained with a slight aversion for the language, but now I just installed an app to help me study further.

I’m putting aside the renewal of the driver’s licence and the buying of another car… because I need to prioritise my health. I mean, my weight. I mean, my weight loss… so I need a more fat-burning solution… like finally putting a baby-seat on the bike, I think this year she is big enough for one.

So.. baby started kindergarten in mid january, day-care level… she supposed to go 3 days per week for 4-5 hours a day… but after just two weeks she came down with the pox. Some very small ones… but she still needed to stay home for 2 weeks.

Then, she started again but after just 2 weeks she caught something else, this time with industrial quantity of buggers and coughing and breathing issues… So she is not going again. Both because she is sick and also because all schools and kindergartens are now closed.

I’m also not feeling at my best, I have congested nose and a slight cough and I need industrial quantities of sleep.. but yeah.. I take what I can. Last night I was exhausted, I went to bed at 21 and slept until 6 when baby woke us up (and by woke us up I mean jumping all over us, pulling our hair and asking for attention) and then I started working in the bathroom, in pajama, while brushing my teeth… as I took vacation last week, because my stress level achieved an ATH, I had a lot to catch up, even if I’m supposed to work just 2h/day.

Now I’m writing this with baby watching YouTube videos in Spanish on my chest and literally coughing in my face and stabbing me with her elbows in my boobs.. Welcome to mommyhood..

Thankfully she eats well.. this morning she ate her bowl of cereals and then she ate half of mine also.. she was like… “you are not eating it anyway, you are too busy… working over the breakfast table”.

Last week we had two days with over 15°C when I hanged laundry outside and played with baby with chalk on the pavement, but in the night of the 2nd day she woke up literally pink, coughing her brains out, with 39.3 fever. So yeah, guess whose guilt level also achieved an ATH!

Wait she got pissed off by something and she threw the phone. Perfect mommy’s daughter.

Plans for 2021

So.. the first thing is arranging kindergarten/day-care for baby who just turned 20 months old. Mama needs some time to breathe. Today if possible. She started to like youtube videos too much lately. I know, the rule was zero screen time until 2 years old.. but the rule was invented pre-covid. This is how we will be counting time from now on, pre-covid era and post-covid era.

I’m still breastfeeding (waking up 2-3 times during the night), with the covid paranoia (I mean, other people’s paranoia, as we had the virus and survived it already, in November), and the neverending lockdowns (for more than a week now, we cannot even buy clothes – not even baby clothes -, toys and house items – paints, bricolage – in the shops), with my 2h/day working from home and my ACCA exams, and Leo working up to 10h/day also from home, I am starting to go crazy. It’s like I am always a bottle full of nerves ready to explode, whenever something unplanned happens, is terrible. Like now, when I cannot find baby’s water bottle.

Then, once she is having a routine there, 4h/day at least 4 days a week, I can start working for me more… Like after a month dedicated only for sleeping.

I want to take some classes of driving to refresh my skills and renew my driver’s licence. And buy myself a car, just for me and baby, for the city. I am thinking at a small one, with two doors and automatic transmission.

Where we live now we cannot count only on public transportation… direct buses are only in the morning (too early) and taxi can get a bit complicated since we have to carry also a car seat whenever we have to go somewhere with baby, as I don’t know if they come with car seat included. And if I have to take her daily to kindergarten, we need another car.

Regarding car seat, we also need to get a new car seat for baby. This is kinda urgent, this month or the next one, as she almost outgrew the shell one that we have since newborn. And we have to drive to Ostrava for that..

Then, I want to pass at least two more ACCA exams this year. I’m currently studying for the Audit and Assurance one, that I plan to sit in March, I read everything in the study text already and I’m now in revision mode, doing exercises from the exam kit, trying to get the full-picture ot it.

And I have also started reading for the Strategic Business Leader exam, from the Professional module, I’m at the third chapter from the study book. I would like to sit for this one in June.

And also from June (the latest), I have to get to 4h/day at work, because my parental leave and allowance will be ending in May.

Then, we would like to have some nice summer vacation somewhere exotic. Not too exotic, just some Mediteranean country, maybe Tunisia if we are in the mood for more adventure, if not, maybe just Italy or Greece.

And that’s about it for now. Going to stress Leo to call to kindergarten again to make an appointment for visiting. I really hope we find a free place to this private one and that it’s just as nice in real site also, as it is in online.

So, bye for now. Happy New Year!

Life after covid

Long story short.. after about 10 days I finally got also my smell back and my energy. For the past 2 nights I even went to bed at 22:00 and I felt rested and eager to start the day in the morning.

I even went back to read from my Audit and Assurance book.. That would be the last exam from the Applied Skills module, this is what motivates me…

Otherwise, I don’t know if is the fact that now I have time to study barely in the weekends when baby sleeps (because during the week I work), the covid or my personal attention deficit disorder (not officially diagnosed) but I still don’t understand much from this topic, because I didn’t have any contact with audit or assurance before… Maybe after I finish reading all the chapters I will be able to make more sense out of it.

And to procrastinate even more, yesterday I ordered the books for my first topic from the Professionals module: Strategic Business Leader, because I couldn’t resist the 30% off Black Friday discount. Ok, it was Saturday. Did you know that this exam is 4h long? Anyway, I saw in the contents preview that it has some chapters on some topics I am curious about. I mean, more than audit&assurance.

And what else… not much really, I don’t feel myself in much mood to write lately. And I hate this new blog writing tool/interface from wordpress. I could just daydream all day long. Except from when I have to parent. And work. And cook. And do laundry. Ok bye for now. Today in her 1.5h of sleep already, I barely read one page and remember not even 10% from it. It snows so peacefully outside. Day-dream mode I told you.

I passed Taxation!!!

Yeeey!!!

And I started watching Suits. And it came to me the idea to do a mock LSAT test, I found a practice one online. Just for fun. And for keeping my neurons sharp. I will let you know the result, when I will have time for it.

We are still waiting for baby’s transcript of birth certificate. Because, you know, in Romania it takes 1 month to put a stamp on a paper. More or less.

Anyhow… I’m really hoping we will have where to go back to CZ and they don’t file for total quarantine, considering the amount of reported positive cases lately.

The future belongs to smart people

While doing my EPSM module from ACCA I had a small revelation. I was saying more than a year ago that school systems as we knew them are bound to slowly dissolve, even faster now thanks to this covid crisis.

And to add something a bit more tabu, aka astrology, we are in the middle of a Jupiter-Saturn-Pluto transit in Capricorn which means a significant transformation of work systems for the better. But you can google this if you want more details.

So.. as the traditional school systems will dissolve, kids will start to embrace online curriculums which will give the opportunity to be followed at each one’s pace. So the smarter you are the faster and farther you can get. The advantage is that intelligent kids will not be bored in class anymore and the slower ones will not develop anxieties and be bullied anymore based on their results. Specializations will be much easier to follow from young ages because there will be no more standardised school subjects and no more national tests on all disciplines for all kids in primary schools. The borders from countries and languages will also dissolve, thanks to technology will be able to understand ourselves in real time with basically anyone.

The problem will be for us to adapt to the new times, not for them. My baby surprised me today when she was touching a button on the screen of my laptop and I had to explain to her which tools are touch screen and which not. At 1 year old.

We bought her a mock play phone and she liked that she has songs but when my dad wanted to pretend with her that he is talking on the phone she looked weird at him and she brought him my smart-phone: “Gran’pa, if you want to call someone use this one, that one is not a phone. Is just a lousy toy.” 20 years from now, the smart-phone that I’m using now will be the “rotary phone” for our kids. Can we even imagine the future?

And something else, the governments and the school systems have no interest at all to introduce subjects like “healthy eating”, “sexual education” and “financial planning”.

We, as a race, we failed just about when we started to make advertising campaigns for medications and vitamin supplements. I haven’t watched TV for a long time but now being back in my home country for vacation, I’m shocked to see how many commercials we have on… drugs. I will not be surprised in the future to see commercials on TV for drugs that are now prescribed for ADHD and spectrum disorders just to enhance kids abilities. More drugs more money more drugs.

But to conclude in a positive note: the best skill that we can steward in our kids is genuine curiosity. Curiosity is the best vitamin and energiser.

Mai stăm o lună

Au trecut așa repede două săptămâni, nu am avut timp nici să mă duc la coafor. Așa că mai stăm. Are birocrația grijă să ne îndeplinească cele mai subconștiente dorințe. Adică trebuie să mai stăm, ca să așteptăm niște acte, de care depind alte acte.

Pe scurt: ca să pot să-mi reînoiesc buletinul meu trebuie să depun certificatul de naștere al bebelinei în română. Adică originalul în cehă cu formular multilingv atașat nu e suficient pentru autoritățile noastre române. Pentru că, în Cehia se pare că nu e suficientă cartea de rezidență permanentă, pentru a-mi face buletin acolo. Sau Dumnezeu știe.. Adică mi-am mai omorât mii de neuroni și pentru asta… mai mult sau mai puțin degeaba.

De fapt am început postarea asta voind să scriu că mă simt mai bine din punct de vedere emoțional și nervos… așa că trecem repede peste aspectul legislativ. Eu am făcut tot ce mi-a stat în putință, acum lucrurile se petrec în afara zonei mele de control, deci nu mai am de ce să mă mai stresez.

Azi m-am trezit cu poftă de croșetat. 😄

La ACCA am început modulul de Etică și Abilități Profesionale (EPSM), care trebuie parcurs și absolvit înainte de P-uri.. E interesant dar luuuung.. Într-o săptămână abia am parcurs 6% din el. Apoi mai am de dat și Audit and Assurance din F-uri, dar poate acest modul îmi face tranziția mai ușoară (adică eu tot sper că am făcut suficient la Taxation cât să-l trec… abia pe 20 Octombrie aflu rezultatul).

În rest… cu munca, pregătim fișierele de raportare pentru FY21. Și mi-aș dori să mă plimb și prin București cu bebe vreo 2-3 zile înainte să ne întoarcem. Că de mers la mare nu cred că se mai pune problema…

Felicitări, USR Câmpulung Muscel!

Ieri după-amiază, în timp ce bebe se plimba cu bunicii ei, în curtea grădiniței cu program prelungit – în care am învățat în primii mei 3 ani în Câmpulung, după 3.5 ani trăiți la țară la Jugur – , m-am auzit zicând că dacă iese Elena Lasconi ne mutăm înapoi şi o dau și pe ea acolo.

Dar realitatea e alta. Adică mult mai complicată…

Cât m-am plimbat prin clădire să votez, nici nu am apucat să mă uit măcar în jur. M-am visat de nenumărate ori pe acolo în ultimii ani, dar pentru mine “căminul” a fost o perioadă mai mult sau mai puțin traumatizantă, în timpul comunismului… cel mai mult îmi amintesc de toaletele alea cu vase de wc extrem de reci, fără capace, unde mirosea constant a clor. Dacă închid ochii și acum îmi mai amintesc acel miros. La câteva luni după “admitere” am făcut pneumonie bilaterală… 4 săptămâni de injecții. Apoi, când ajunsesem deja la grupa mare, acolo am leșinat prima oară (sau cel puțin, prima oară când îmi aduc aminte), în timpul unei repetiții pentru serbare..

Sper că s-au mai schimbat lucrurile de atunci.. Atât în comfortul din clădire cât și în calitatea educatoarelor și a metodelor de educare, și că se vor schimba și mai mult în continuare.

Dar, să mă întorc de tot în Câmpulung (adică eu cu bebe)… deocamdată nu se pune problema asta. Mai sunt multe alte opțiuni până aici.

Anybody (still) here?

If you don’t own a YouTube channel with at least 10.000 Subscribers or a Tik-Tok account with God knows how many are there, it’s like you don’t exist in the 2020ies. Or if you don’t have shares in Amazon, Google, Facebook etc preferably purchased at least 5 years ago…

Anyway… This week I learned something that shocked me… You know, in those times when I didn’t know if my baby will last inside of me until term or if I will get to raise a preemie, I got familiar with several YouTube channels of young/teen moms. There is Allie with Cartia, the couple from Australia with their amazing Penelope, Maddie who got pregnant at barely 14, Sophie who got twin boys in her last year of highschool and Cam&Fam. In the meanwhile Claire had a sister and is expecting another sibling, the Duggars had… I lost the count… grandchildren and expecting more.

Now… About Camryn from Cam&Fam. When I first found her she had just given birth to a 33 weeks old preemie. In the meanwhile she and baby’s dad got married and had a 2nd baby. About a month ago, the 19 years old husband, father of 2, hanged himself in the garage.

At first I didn’t know what to think about it… now I just blame the times. We are living some horrible times. We are at a point in the human evolution when we’ve gained so much awareness about mental illnesses (and gender dysphoria) and you have so many sources of information, yet so many people are too ignorant about them and hate and bully and worse. What worries me is what these kids born after 2000 have to fight everyday… probably only they know. The social pressure in the online is tremendous. At least YouTube came with a good idea of stopping the comments sections to the channels that portray the life of minors. For me is intringuing why so many kids and teens nowadays are diagnosed with ADHD or Spectrum Disorders and end up becoming addicted to the medication.

I am very scared for my daughter. So many things are changing. You really don’t know how the school will look like 5-6 years from now. Social distance for kids in primary school? This is not only utopic, but torturous. Social distance for kids in highschool, when they are discovering their bodies and the emotions between them?! Yeah, Good luck, Charlie.

The work system that most knew, collapsed. So many lost their jobs. For me, personally, this was an advantage, as I’ve been working from home for several years and it got me the opportunity to come back earlier than planned, to a very flexible work-schedule, but, with a small baby at home it would be impossible to work a full-time schedule like this, and God, I’m yearning about it so badly, as I would hate to fall behind in my career. I think this is what drives me (crazy) the most.

I even wanted to say at some point that, aside from those 25 mil reported Covid cases that tested positive so far, probably another 25 mil people “tested” positive to some form of mental illness. I think this is the real pandemic.

Myself, in particular, I’m very close to request depression medication. I’m not writing it as a complaint or as a “poor-me, save me”, I am not even angry anymore. I am just accepting the fact that I am not the way I was anymore. Ok, I’m still breastfeeding, plus some other stuff I have on my plate, that have left their mark on my nerves. But, hopefully from now on the pressure will slowly decrease and I will start to wake up with a smile on my face again. After at least 8h of sleep/night.

I didn’t want to write earlier because I wanted to have also something positive to share, aside from the fact that baby now has 8 teeth and 4 molars and she is walking by herself like a pro and even “doing” gymnastics.

And what else I’ve been doing lately… aside from taking care of a baby almost 24/7 and also working 2h/day, in average…

So, I passed that Czech Language test for Permanent Residency. I wrote about it on Facebook, I don’t wanna go back to that (feeling) again. On Monday I should go to retrieve my final Permanent Residency paper. But whether this will entitle me to a Czech ID with permanent domicile, I honestly don’t know.

Then, this Tuesday, I had the ACCA exam on Taxation, the Czech system. After getting stuck in traffic for almost 1h on the highway and fighting with her dad because we were not agreeing which route to take, baby threw up in her car seat, just 5 min before arriving to the parking lot in Brno.

It was the first time in her life when she throws up. Then, she was looking so much better and composed, it was just a one time thing, but it marked me, emotionally, as I was already there in the back with her and I didn’t know if I should take her out from her seat if she is chocking or not… Anyway, I entered into the exam worried and stressed for leaving her. I had a fight with her dad again, because I asked him to go with her in the stroller and buy her a new car seat and he wouldn’t. At least they went and saw it, the one we agreed on, but they didn’t buy it.

I felt like the worst mom in world when I put the baby in the way back home in the same dirty car seat. We cleaned it with wet wipes as much as we could but it was still stinking. But she slept like an angel the whole way back, 1h&45min without saying anything at all.

So yeah… I have no idea if I’m gonna pass this exam, especially because of one 10 points question that was probably intended to be easy, but it blocked me, because it was the first big one and it was from the introductory chapter… I had stressed myself so much to go through all the past exam questions from the Exam Kit and I was reviewing each main chapter again, each week, but it simply didn’t cross my mind to at least read one more time the introductory chapter. So I lost too much time trying to write something to that question and then I didn’t have time anymore to finish what I actually knew how to solve. And that Excel place where you write your answer is horrible, because you cannot see the Cell reference when you click on one formula, among other things.

Now… I am seriously flirting with the idea of 2-3 weeks vacation with the baby in Romania. We just have to go to the notary and get the papers so I can take her out of the country just by myself and then I will buy the plane tickets. But now I’m stressed because the reported Covid cases in CZ have increased too much in the past days and what if the austrians come again with some brilliant idea of closing the borders. Because I’m flying from Vienna, is closer, faster and also much cheaper that from Prague.

So… That’s about it for now. I’m trying everyday to find reasons to look forward to. There are so many things that don’t work out and I have to change, but I don’t have that much energy to fight in that many battles.

One step at a time

So baby did today her first step. She was standing in the big bed next to me and she was keeping her balance for quite a while, when I showed her that she can move one leg from here to here. And she did it! Without falling! Mommy so proud.

Ok, she is walking with support of our hands for more than a month now and she is also climbing up the stairs just by herself for the same amount of time. She is just a slower starter. Taking her time to enjoy infancy as much as possible. 😍

Ok, and I write also here if I haven’t already, as I bragged about it in several places and nobody seemed to care anyway, is like, because of covid, they already cancelled also the “best working mother of the year award” (yeah, I just invented it).

So I started back work, but just 2h/day, because I still have baby at home… Some of the days she didn’t let me work at all during the day so I had to do it in the evening after she fell asleep, which turned out a bit more tiring than I was expecting. And last Friday I had a full day of online mandatory training… and because I had to learn a new region (I’m kinda like a back-up for Nordics now) it took me more than 2h/day so far to understand all the files. Tiring, but manageable. Nothing that a cocktail of one Paralen, one Isla, one Iron and one MagneB6 wouldn’t fix.

And this week we also submitted the papers for permanent residency… And (did I already mention this?) I kept the appointment for the language exam anyway, as it’s going to be a nice experience. I guess I have developed a strange addiction for taking exams now. And as crazy as I am, I aim to pass it with 100%, even if only 60% is actually needed for A1, because at reading and hearing I am quite A2 already.

And on Monday I will probably be sending by post also the tax form for the basic deduction for 2020, which was supposed to be signed by mid-february, but, back then, it didn’t even cross my mind that I will want to work at all during 2020, so I skipped it.

So yeah, one step at a time, one day at a time!