MOVIN’ ON UP: Goodbye SD, Hello SF!

Current tunes: John Mayer, Covered in Rain

When I was about four years old, I was asked to draw what I wanted to be when I grew up. So I drew an ugly stick figure of a ballerina. Gosh, I was so freaking basic. Plus from what I have seen, you have to be graceful, as thick as a candlestick, and have dainty feet to be a dancer and between my natural talent of tripping, my love for food, and my whopping 9.5 size feet, tutus and Swan Lake were never in the cards for me.  A few years later, I remember being at a Burger King with my mom and after ordering a few 99 cent cheeseburgers (because the luxury of a Kids’ Meal and toy only happened when Grandma was around since my mother was a firm believer that anything that was not on the Dollar Menu was a complete waste of money), I watched the cashier quickly divvy out the change. Not realizing that the register is programmed to do the calculations, I was completely FLOORED by her skills. I remember telling my mom that I hoped one day I could be good at math and count coins in a such a speedy manner so that I too could flip burgers and be a happy employee of Burger King. Way to dream big, Little Miriam. My mom rolled her eyes at me and said, “Well you better go to college then so you can own one instead.”

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First travel assignment at Scripps Memorial in San Diego

After that moment, I don’t really remember having any other aspirations for a certain career until I was almost finished with high school…well except for teaching but that was by default because my mother, grandfather, and several other relatives worked as educators. I never dreamed I’d be where I am today. A member of the nursing community. And a nomadic one at that.

IMG_6851If you’re new to TDD,
1) Welcome!
2) I hope you enjoy rambling,
& 3) I am a twenty-something newbie travel RN on her second assignment (if you have never heard of travel nursing, click here to read a previous post about how travel nursing works).  After 15 incredible weeks of bathing in the San Diego sunshine, my time in southern Californian has finally come to an end. I must admit that San Diego has stolen a little piece of my heart. It was the perfect mix of having the feel of a big city but with friendly, laid back vibes. Also, as a Vitamin D addict, the weather kept me one happy camper. Sigh…I am sure going to miss the surfer silhouettes during those breathtaking sunsets. I will miss stuffing myself with guac and margs on Taco Tuesday. I will miss pretending to be a mermaid and swimming out farther than I was ever actually comfortable with on my frequent beach bum days. I will miss having access to an acai bowl or juice bar (both staples to an SD diet) in any given neighborhood. And I will miss those few people that God strategically placed in my life as I struggled to find community in a new place. They definitely kept me going on those days when adjusting to a new work environment really wore me down. To my new friends, you know who you are, thank you for being you, keep in touch, and come visit!


Also, as most of you know I am a shameless Yelp nerd and plan on doing a “Best Grub Spots of SD” post in the near future, so if anyone is planning an SD vacay and needs ideas of places to chow down, hit me up. I am embarrassed to say we practically ate our way through the city and loved every second.

So where am I now, you ask? Well after agonizing over locations and crossing our fingers over a particular location, my travel partner and roomie Kaitlin and I are happy to announce that dreams do come true. Somehow, we both were able to land ICU day shifts in one of the most coveted travel nurse destinations in the country…
                                                                           SAN FRANCISCO!
We went from bikinis and flip flops to thermals and scarves, from beautiful sunshine to overcast skies and low lying fog, and from flat open beaches to hilly streets and sky scrapers. Yes, the change has been a bit drastic, but exciting nonetheless. Yet again, finding a furnished month to month living space proved to be a tricky feat. Thankfully we were able to score a lovely two bedroom apartment just minutes from our work place, California Pacific Medical Center- Pacific Campus, in the gorgeous neighborhood of Pacific Heights. As my best friend has been going to dental school in SF for the last few years, I am fairly familiar with San Francisco culture and am even a proud owner of a Clipper Card. (Look at me mom, I learned how to use public transport and maybe can survive as a big city girl!) However, I had never really spent time in this particular neighborhood and as I explored the area around my new digs I was surprised to find that it is kind of considered to be a ritzier side of town and I marveled at the old beautiful Victorian mansions that lined the streets.  Whaaaaaat? Me? Fancy? Remember what I said about not being able to be a ballerina earlier?  So I don’t know how well I’ll fit in but for three months, I am sure I can get used to this.

Plus this city is fascinating in that it is roughly only seven by seven miles yet has a ton of pocket neighborhoods, each with their own personalities and people groups. It’s like every few blocks you are discovering a new world. In fact, I was sitting in a coffee shop the other day and was beaming at the fact that I was sandwiched between two different couples, both of which were speaking something other than English. Three cheers for diversity and culture! This also means the culinary options here are off the charts. This city is arguably one of the biggest foodie destinations in the US and I am pretty stoked to have the gastronomical experience of a lifetime. Okay I realize that is such a nerdy, fat kid statement but Kaitlin and I figured that in our 13 week assignment here, if we go to breakfast once a week, we maaaybe able to hit all the spots on our brunch list…first world problems, right? Okay, so I am slightly disgusted with our gluttony goals but I would like to point out that San Francisco is the birthplace of Yelp and there is something to be said about the passion put into its local eateries. Thank God for these massive hills to help keep those calories in check.

I guess I should briefly touch on the reason I even get to be here, but I have yet to have a real first day as a nurse and actually touch a patient as this past week was filled with paperwork and orientation stuff. Instead, Kaitlin and I have been exploring the nearby Fillmore Street, a hip and happening area with food and shopping galore, and spent this last weekend getting into the holiday spirit by participating in SantaCon SF (in both the festive and alcoholic varieties).


Tomorrow is our first day on the unit and if I am totally honest with myself, I am pretty nervous. But first day jitters are normal and I truly believe that sometimes it’s that extra edge that keeps us on our toes as nurses. Wish me luck!

Cheers and keep on wishin’!

Miriam
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