Monday, June 30, 2008

Goodbye, reliable wireless internets.

So, my father-in-law has been stopping by after work with his truck for the past week to pick up those things that are a Pain In The Ass To Move. You know the things. Beds. Couches. Kitchen tables. Also file under: Things That Are Useful For Living.

Early last week he came and took our couch, our kitchen table (which we never eat at, but which I often use as an extra surface when I'm cooking), half my books, and whatever I could haul out of the crawl space that was already in boxes.

In the middle of last week, he came and took our bed and desk. We've been camping out in the middle of our bedroom, which is suddenly much larger, ever since.

On Saturday, he came and took my bookshelves *sniffle*, all our pots and pans, and the footstool for my big red chair. Now we have nothing to cook with, nothing to sleep on, no surfaces to let useless papers built up on, and nowhere to put our feet when we're sitting in the big red chair. My life is so hard.

Fortunately, due to the inconveniences of the past week and my father-in-law's willingness to haul heavy things, our 'big move' today will be much less of a hassle.

Let the living out of suitcases commence!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Class act

It has only been eleven days since my last post, so I don't know what you're raging about, but I love that you're doing it in Spanish, September.
Joel and I are moving out soon, and while it feels like we're just jaunting off to Mexico and coming back, we're coming back SOMEWHERE ELSE! I've lived in Abbotsford for five of the last six years. All my friends are here. It's *sniffle* the end of an era.

With that in mind, I've been trying to let school take care of itself, and Joel and I have been socializing hard. This doesn't make for terribly interesting blogging, because we spend a lot of time sitting on patios and watching this hilarious video over and over. And then we come home and Joel watches hours of Lost and I remember that I have to learn five thousand Spanish irregular verbs by tomorrow. Such is life.

Yesterday, after I wrote my Spanish final, we took a break from our patio slumming and classed up with a little wine and cheese. Dave, our resident oinologist, taught us how to swirl and sniff our wine. He also taught us what happens when you leave a bottle too long that wasn't properly corked (the wine soaks into the cork, the cork crumbles when you try to open the bottle, and you have to strain the wine into a nalgene and give everyone cancer).

There was, of course, dealcoholized wine for the obviously or potentially pregnant among us.
It tasted like watered-down grape juice left in the sun.

There was also some suspicious home-brewed mead. It tasted medieval, and not a little gross.

I'd make a big deal out of what-all kinds of wines and cheeses we had, because it was all very exciting, but I'm going to just have to go with 'lots.'
Needless to say, the end of the evening gets a little hazy. I remember having several strong opinions about things, and also that Joel was my designated getter-down-stairser.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

When good snacks go bad

Ok, FIRST of all, what douche-wipe gave this the go-ahead?

For what do we need chocolate-flavored Skittles? We have M&M's! Also Smarties, for if you are an idiot and have bad taste. Chocolate-flavored Skittles, that is just the gross. Think-tanks, learn this lesson: things that are chocolate-flavored but are not actual chocolate invariably taste like Tootsie-Rolls (which, again, we already have) or ass.
Case-in-point this can of nast:

Accidentally purchased due to its strong resemblance to Diet Cherry Dr Pepper, this is Diet Cherry-Chocolate Dr Pepper. Throw a Tootsie-Roll into a can of Dr Pepper, you will have this product. You will also have diabeetus. And a strong urge to vomit.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

What doing?

For those of you whom I don't see on a day-to-day basis (Hi, September! Hi, Alan!) and haven't told you all about our exciting plans, welcome to: The Year We Were Nomads.

At the end of June, Joel and I will be packing up our earthly goods and moving them into his parents' attic, where we will also be living for 5 days.

In early July, we'll be flying out to Mexico for 6 weeks to work with friends of ours doing...I dunno. Mexican things. Remember how, when I was in Thailand, I would blog, like, every day? This might end up being like that. Contrary-wise, we might have no readily-accesable intarwebs there, or we might just be right well busy, so I might not blog at all. How exciting!

We get back in the middle of August, and will be moving in with my parents while we try to find a place to live in Vancouver for 4 months.

Come September, we'll have hopefully found a squalid hole to store our mattress and microwave and selves that will let us pay month-to-month. All UBC med school students need to have the same basic whatever bla bla bla so Joel has to attend the Vancouver campus for a semester. Don't ask what I'll be doing school-wise because....I'll let you know in October how that's going.

In January, we'll be moving to Victoria so Joel can attend the Victoria campus of UBC med and I can finally settle into a program at UVic and estimate when I might graduate (HOO-ah!) and we can find a decent place to live and settle in there for several years. YEARS, people. Do you know how long it's been since I spent a full year in one spot? Seven years.

Meanwhiles, I'm entering in the last week of classes (read: tearing my hair out and throwing things) and trying to pack up all our junk into Victoria/Vancouver/Mexico boxes.

So...sorry for the silence all this while. Things is busy.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Friday, June 06, 2008

The end of an era

The summer that I met Joel was the summer of the Nalgenes, and while this sounds like the opening to a bad Young Adult novel, I promise that this post will be less about Joel and more about Nalgenes.

That summer at camp (2002, and you won't believe the math I had to do to get there), Nalgenes were ubiquitous. They'd been advertised as unbreakable, and the rumor was that if you broke yours, you could mail it to them and they'd mail you a new one. For free.

(That rumor later proved true, but it ended up costing almost as much to mail your Nalgene in as it did to go buy a new one, and you had to wait the 6-8 weeks for shipping.)

Needless to say, if you tell a bunch of 19- and 20-year-olds that something can't be broken, they will spend their spare time trying to break it. We would throw our Nalgenes off of cabins, run over them with cars, and kick them everywhere we went, as though they were a loose stone. If your Nalgene was new, you had to throw it into a pile of gravel and stomp on it for a bit, so that it looked like you'd had one since before they were cool.

By the end of the summer, no one had managed to break their Nalgene. Joel and I were walking to lunch one day discussing this fact, and he asked if he could have a jump on mine. When a guy who looks like Joel asks if he can jump on your Nalgene, you don't say no.

It cracked.

It didn't break, and it still held water. I just couldn't toss it into my backpack or let it lie on its side for too long, and when I drank I had to drink from right above the 'e' or water would dribble out of the cracks and down my shirt, making me look like I didn't know how to drink. I hung onto it until camp ended, and then bought this one:

This bottle has been with me through thick and thin for six years. I brought it back for one more summer of camp (that summer we made rings out of toothbrush handles and belay rope). It came with me to Thailand. It comes with me to the gym and to class, and when I forget it, I'm thirsty and angry.

However, as I'm sure you've all heard by now, Nalgenes give you cancer. And I know, the results are sketchy, and I also know that everything gives you cancer. It's just genetics are giving me cancer, and my inability to stay out of the sun is giving me cancer, and Joel insists that my one-a-day cup of coffee is giving me cancer (to the point where he tells me he's going to the kitchen, and do I want him to bring me my cancer-juice - he's such an enabler) and the thing is, I'd like to get cancer later rather than sooner.

So...alas. Farewell, faithful Nalgene. You have made water attractive and portable well past your time. Greetings and salud, generic stainless steel water bottle that surprisingly doesn't taste like a tin can. I guess you'll have to do.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Inconsiderate shits

Having lived in Abbotsford (Buttsford, to the locals) for almost five years, I can now distinguish between the various types of shits people spread on their farms. Cow shits smell, oddly enough, like dairy farms. Also like petting zoos. This is the most preferable of the shits. Chicken shits are dry, and the smell of them gets into your mouth and down your throat. These are unfortunate shits. Pig shits are the worst, and will have you shoving sharp things into your nostrils just to make it stop.

There's this farm about 3 blocks from our house (quick aside: that is a broccoli farm and that refuses, after harvesting, to plow all their broccoli stems under like everyone else, so that for a month or so after harvesting season all the air in a 4-block radius smells like rotting broccoli stems) that has just spread their fields with pig shits. Again, these are the worst of the shits.

So the other morning, I'm going for a run, and the path that I take runs alongside this field. A truck full of shits pulls just ahead of me, presumably bringing fresh shits to the field. I'm running about as fast as this truck is driving, so for about a block I'm running alongside these travelling shits. I'm trying not to breathe, but the body needs air to run.

We're moving in less than a month. To the city. Where the only shits are from the dogs and the vagrants.