Thursday, September 27, 2012

You'll only regret...

Which wise-face said that "you'll only regret things you haven't done?"
I heard this a long time ago, in Serbia, and for a long time thought it true.
Not anymore.
Not that I don't have regrets. But they go both ways.
For example, a few days ago, I decided that I will go after fellowships. At this point, I realize, it is something that I would love to do, a fiction-writing fellowship. Anywhere, though Harvard would be my first choice.
But in 2006. I had an offer from Boston College for an assistantship and full scholarship for an M.A. in Slavic Studies, which I said no to because...I'm embarrassed to say why, but, at that point in time, to that Marija, it seemed like a right decision.
I also said NO to two excellent full time jobs--one when I got into grad school in DC, and another, when I was about to move to NYC.
So, am I the only one who thinks about the past a bit and wonders if I made the right decisions, and wonders where I would be now if I had taken any of those other paths?
It's not that I'm not happy with where I am right now, but I have to admit, sometimes, I feel a little lost. And a little bit with a "multiple personality disorder."
Well, I'm doing 246 different things, but none of them with a 100 percent. And the road to here has been fun, no doubt, and educational; it's just, I wonder something, how stability would fit right now.
Back in 2006, being an assistant in college sounded wrong for me and reporting sounded right, but now, I realized, I don't really want to be a reporter. Which is kind of a bummer after you get an M.A. in it, and spend a lot of time and money on it.
On the other hand, getting an M.A. in creative writing or acting probably would not have been the best decision either.
And now, I feel a little bit like a cat (nine lives and all). I'm applying for fellowships, I'm sending my book to competitions, and to agents, I'm looking for a full-time job in Communications, I want to start my own Internet business, I want to keep learning Italian, and I want to live in Europe again.
And I'm also still interpreting, teaching and consulting on-need basis.
One thing I know for sure. I love to write. Not articles, but fiction, historical fiction, or really any fiction. I actually get goose bumps from reading my own good fiction. Weird, right? From reading other people's great fiction too, not just my own...
So I should probably follow that path as long as there is one. What if it turns into a dirt path? What then? Still follow it? What if I hit a forest? What then? A flashlight?

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Volkswagen, Schmoltzwagen, Fraudwagen, Thiefwagen

It's just unbelievable how quickly one can transit from ecstatic to miserable.
I had a wonderful, active visit to Rome, then Belgrade and Nis, Serbia, and I was full of positive energy and interesting fiction material until Saturday.
On Saturday, my car, my VW Beetle got a pneumonia. How do I know? Its underbelly began banging while on Rock Creek Parkway. It was so bad that I had to have it towed to a VW dealership in Bethesda-Martens.
So, if you have been "reading" me, I'm sure that at some point I have mentioned how in love I am with my car. It's perfect. I talk to it. I have a bumper bully. I have, since Saturday, vanity plates: "MARIJA." I don't like letting other people drive it. And I mourn every scratch incompetent DC parkers put on it. I never, ever hit it, I drive it carefully, all in all, I just love and respect my car.
And a service manager yesterday gave me long a list of worn out and rusty parts, including my brake pads that need to be replaced.
Have I mentioned it's certified pre-owned, with a service warranty?
So, I have been extremely stressed since yesterday and my only way to battle stress-Yoga and dark chocolate--hasn't helped completely.
I am so angry with Martens VW that I want to sue them!Make them go out of business. Have them file for bankruptcy.
I have been bringing my car for a check up every 3-4-5 months, last time in late April and "everything was fine." All of a sudden, I don't have to tell you how huge my bill is, after the warranty, cause, "it doesn't cover everything."
So, I'm not sure if they certified a car that should not have been certified, or if Martens VW is so bad at what they do that they have missed all the warning signs. Or they just wanted things to get so bad, maybe even waited for my warranty to expire so they can charge me an arm and a leg. And they are pricey, let me tell you. I used to think, it was because they were good, better than the rest. The exact opposite.
So, I have called VW America and complained about the dealeships' poor service. I have contacted BBB and filed a complaint with them as well. I'm not going to be duped or frauded. I'm am not going down without a fight, especially since I know I'm right.
What would you do if you go for a physical in April, and the same doctor tell you then you're in perfect health, and in September, you're dying of something? Exactly!
But the real problem is, I love my car, and it's sick. So, I really want them to repair it, put new organs, whatever it takes, clone it for all I care, and not just sell it and get another car. New Beetle is really the only car I want. And they don't make them anymore. Maybe, for a reason :(
My father said: it seems that those Beetles are gentle. How appropriate for moi.
So, if you have any advice on how to deal with this problem, I would appreciate it.
In a meanwhile, my poor little car is still at the shop. Probably sad and lonely.
p.s. No, I'm not crazy. I just love my car. Deal with it.