A Little Distraction

Dear Reader,

Today, I was waiting to hear back about my Russian visa application. If all turned out okay, then I would be off on a plane in two days, if not, then boooooooooo (more on why I’m going to Russia here). All I wanted was a confirmation email that I would get my passport back by tomorrow morning. So naturally, today I was refreshing and re-refreshing my phone to make sure that I didn’t miss any alert. Coincidentally, it was also a very busy day workwise as we have many events coming up soon, so I am receiving a high volume of emails at all times of the day (and night) both from my American and European colleagues. This meant that each time my email chimed, I was filled with hope and then disappointment whenever I received a message unrelated the status of my Russian visa application.

I try not to be anxious about things that I cannot control, because it’s unproductive and makes me feel emotionally drained. At the same time though, I feel that sometimes I do get anxious because I know that there might be some sort of action that I could take, which could change the course of events. In the end, I would also prefer to have tried too hard, rather than to have given up too easily. However, this time, it is pretty clear that the status of my visa application was certainly beyond the powers of my control. Ordinarily, this sort of application would not weigh too heavily on my mind, however, this time I would literally be receiving my passport one day before I would be due to depart, so the circumstances this time lean towards the extraordinary side.

To help distract myself from the waiting, I tried to focus on everything. When my brain does not focus, sometimes I have the tendency to dwell on things. So today, I tried to keep myself engaged by focusing on anything that could sustain my interest. Here are some of the things that I noticed today:

Tiny tailess squirrel. On my pace through Boston Common, I saw a peculiar looking squirrel scurrying across the lawn. Upon closer inspection, it became clear that this little squirrel might have had its poor little tail chopped off. How? I’m not sure, but from the looks of it, this is an adult squirrel with an asymmetrical nub of a tail.

Boston, MA, Fall 2019

Before the storm. Boston has very changeable weather. As I was walking, it became very evident that rain would be fast approaching. In anticipation of this, I took the time to take some pre-rain pics to show how beautiful it all can look just moments before the storm.

I was staring at this chicken pesto pizza from a distance. From far away the little dark round toppings looked like grapes and raisins, however, they are actually tomatoes (which, of course, makes a lot more sense….).

The TV in a lobby of a Boston apartment building. Scientists are predicting an unpredictable flu season. Apparently, this year’s flu season was very serious down in Australia, which is supposedly relevant for America’s flu season. Last year’s flu season was particularly long and the year before was particularly deadly (or vice versa, I know forget…).

The world is filled with so many little, trivial things. Sometimes all that we need, Dear Reader, is just a little distraction.



P.S. I did end up getting confirmation that my visa would arrive tomorrow – yay 😊

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