The first challenge was to move outside my comfort zone - my friends were in San Diego and I hadn't arranged to meet anyone there. It's a funny thing, because last year I went to most events as a 'stranger' and I felt quite used to turning up on my own. And now as I have formed my own friendships, I feel a little bit lost when they are not there.
The loneliness lasted all of five minutes - as soon as I sat down I got chatting to a couple of people, and the rest, as they say, was history.
And after 40 minutes, so was my voice. I'm not sure at which point my voice disappeared, but by the time I reached the dinner table it was no longer there. The best I can managed is a hoarse croak (or should that be a husky murmur?)
This meant that much of the time I spent listening rather than talking. Perhaps that was my challenge. Perhaps the 'Light' wanted me to hear certain things that I wouldn't have been able to capture with my mouth open (which I did). Or perhaps God is saying 'Oh for goodness sakes woman, just give everyone else's ears a rest for a change'. Either way, I had little choice. And apart from driving each person nuts at least twice by explaining I had lost my voice, which due to my broken dulcet tones was entirely unnecessary (hey, I did drink four glasses of wine, down in one, three of them on an empty stomach) I think most people appreciated that unless we were singing (or drinking wine), my jaw was clamped firmly shut.
And my voice is still absent this morning - a blessed relief for all concerned.
There is just one teensy problem. The woman who interviewed me last week said that she would get back to me on Friday. She didn't. So I lasted out the weekend and decided that she would get in touch yesterday. She didn't.
I have to admit, all manner of thoughts have been going through my head, from 'she's busy' to 'do I smell, or something?' to 'well, how incredibly rude. The least that she could do is let me know either way' to 'maybe they are interviewing other people and lining me up for another role' to 'maybe they are interviewing other people and have decided not to touch me with a barge pole'
Whatever their decision, you have to admit, it doesn't look promising. I mean, they're not exactly snapping my hand off, are they? So here I am with my pride a tad dented - feeling rather buoyant after the interview, that I could not fail in getting the job, that they would ring me first thing in the morning and say 'Yes, you would add enormous value to our company. when can you start?' - wondering now which bit of me they didn't like, if any.
So I should call. It's the grown up thing to do. Touch base with them, remind them of my interest in working for their company. Except that I have no voice. So I can't.
Silence all round.
Naff and cowardly as it seems, I'm going to have to send an email instead. And then crack on with re-writing my CV. In silence.