​An Australian Creative Director and Strategist fumbles through life in America. Live from New York.

An Australian Creative Director and Strategist fumbles through life New York City.

Filtering by Tag: homesick

A sad morning.

I had two planned entries today: one tentatively titled ‘Yakult: The best tasting thing ever?’ and another about how I have a flat tire on my bike (wow - that would’ve been a BALLTEARER).

But instead, I got sideswiped: my sister rang me this morning to tell me about her three colleagues and friends that were killed yesterday in a helicopter accident over Lake Eyre, South Australia.

Hearing her voice, filled with the sadness and bewilderment of facing such devastating and unexpected loss, I felt totally helpless. I wanted to be there, right there: to listen, talk, hug, hold. But I’m not: in thousands of kilometres away, caught up in my own life and problems (which all seem rather petty and overblown). And this isn’t about me at all: I just wish I wasn’t here, because I wish I home to help my family get through this.

This is an enormous and sudden tragedy, and I can only add my voice to the growing chorus of people saying: too soon, too early, not fair. The outpouring of respect for these three men is moving, and despite never meeting any of them, I can honestly say I am sorry for their loss: I could hear it in my sister’s voice that these were these men were all good, decent and well loved people, and highly respected professionals.

I wish I was home to help. Vale.

Current Low.

Damn it. It was all going so well on Friday. After work, a few beers and laughs at the Charles homestead had me riding high into the weekend. Unfortunately, come Sunday night, we’re scraping pretty close to rock bottom. Factors:

  • Weather: yesterday/last night was a filthy soup of humidity and pollution
  • Health: a (perceived) hangover Saturday has blown into a headache-y, stomach flu filled Sunday, complete with massive bouts of exhaustion and frequent trips to the john
  • Work: when I haven’t been throwing up or being asleep from throwing up, I’ve been working, which sucks because it’s a beautiful day today (Why couldn’t I have gotten sick on Saturday?)
  • Loneliness: 3 months in, and I’ve got some very close friends, but that hasn’t stopped me dramatically missing her, as well as my family

Hurumph. I need to get yanked from this funk. Work this week will be full on, and hopefully that will somehow help.

We’ll see.

So. Fucking. Polluted.

Beijing is experiencing it’s most polluted day in over three months: which is therefore the most polluted day I’ve experienced here. It is truly foul, like a gray soup that you wade through, using your lungs as punching bags. And yes, I realise this makes no sense.

Tim said it best: remember when 3D video games had low capacity to show distance, and buildings would simply loom out of a fog right in front of you? That is exactly how it is here today. Nasty.

Beijing, modern day, view from my window.

Learning how to walk again.

So I’ve been in a funk this week. I think I know why.

Adjusting to working in brand experience in China is proving harder than I thought.

Basically, I’ve been taught to work one way (by extremely talented folk), and I’m now slowly learning to work another way. And this new way feels…well, wrong (to my western thinking).

I work with far less information. Less (or no) knowledge of the audience, the objectives, the messaging, the client and the overall aim. It’s hard to please when you don’t know what will please.

In fact, it’s bloody hard. I want to do good work, the way I was taught. Work that perfectly reflects the brand (which is often completely undefined). Work that pushes the boundaries of what has been done. Work that feels right, and that will reflect well on the client (and in turn, me and us).

I feel quite often like I’m shooting in the dark. Or as a close friend said tonight, ‘You keep looking to make a diamond, and you don’t even have the coal.’

And this trickles into making me feel like I’m not good at what I do. Which is difficult to admit, because I like to think I have a wild idea what I’m doing.

And this certainly isn’t a reflection on every job. It’s just a rutt I’m in because of (hopefully) a few rogue briefs.

Hmmmmmm. I guess I’ll have to adjust.

Welcome to the learning curve.

Memory Storm.

I have vivid memories of childhood summers in Sydney being completely dominated by a) lots of heat and b) many huge storms. Beijing has brought these memories roaring back to the surface.

Everyday here is consistently, relentless hot. 30+ every single day, and sometimes marching well north of 35 degrees. And every second or third day, huge electrical storms turn the city inside out, with more lightening than I’ve ever seen complemented by torrents of rain (and occasionally hail) with lashings of strong wind thrown in for good measure.

These storms have reminded me of the Sydney of my childhood: before summer changed (as it has in the last few years) into a few randomly smattered boiling hot days in October and February, with mid twenties, humid or rainy months thrown in between.

Fuck you, global warming. I had to move to another hemisphere just to experience the summers of my youth.


Wow. And now I’m homesick as all get out. I miss you guys. Also, this could be the first time the hashtag ‘Button Farm’ has been employed on the interwebs.