Thursday, December 13, 2001

Helen & Harry

We saw the Harry Potter film finally, and bumped into Helen who was in Edinburgh to celebrate her birthday, at the Italian restaurant right under our flat.

Christmas plans are going well here, some of us are group buying tonight since it's the late night at the shops. We have the advent calendar up on the back of the couch but that's it for our decorations. I have been sent some Christmas cards,
including ones from Nana and Aunt Joan. Mine have all finally been mailed out, even the ones to people in Britain.

Andrea moves into her flat tomorrow, so we get our living room back.

I've already spent all my Christmas money on courses next term, one is on Troy and the other on the beginnings of farming in the middle east.

Wednesday, December 05, 2001

Advent Calendar Arrived

I got the advent calendar in the mail but haven't put it up on the wall yet!

I'm going to use my Christmas money to pay for my courses next term since I had better sign up for them soon-my last class is tonight and then I just have the two essays to write by February.

I hope Daniel enjoyed his birthday.

I have to send my Christmas cards off by this Friday and haven't done any yet.

Monday, December 03, 2001

Christmas package sent!

Alan started his Christmas holidays job today and I had a half day off to go get my national insurance number.

More importantly, I've finally sent out the family Christmas package-it's in two parts, one is a box and the other a bubble envelope. One of Bradley and Alannah's gifts is particularly cute.

Andrea is over here and has been staying with us for the past week-she is off travelling for a bit but then will be back with us till her lease starts on the 14th.

Tuesday, October 30, 2001

Autumn musings

My university courses are really good. My friend Louise is taking the one on Pompeii with me. I'm definitely going to take more in January.

We are moving buildings at work and the dept is going to be reorganized. There are permanent positions going, I might apply since the main boss suggested I do, but I think that with such a short term visa it's not too likely I'd get it.

I've just been reading the Harry potter books and am looking forward to the movie. They are amazing-much better than I expected.

The weather is getting pretty bad now. Damn Scottish autumns.

Tuesday, October 16, 2001

Weekends and new classes

We've had a good weekend here-out for dinner for alan's friend's birthday on Friday when I managed successfully to eat my whole meal with chopsticks, a flatwarming on Saturday with tons of old friends, a day of reading the papers and watching four hours of wildlife programmes on BBC1 Sunday and then out to see American Pie 2 on Monday evening.

I have signed myself up for two evening classes in archaeology through the Uni of Edinburgh-they are not quite uni level courses but were fairly cheap. One is on Pompeii and the other on hunter gatherers after the ice age. I'm not sure how much work they entail, but if all goes well I may take four more over the next two terms to get the certificate for doing six. I figured if nothing else, I will get to learn about various periods/locations in archaeology which may help me decide what I want to study.

Alan is doing well, the district nurse came on the weekend to change his dressing. It's going to be another three weeks till it's healed though. Not much of a Thanksgiving here this year, since I spent it in the hospital with him!

Statue in George Square Gardens, Edinburgh University

Saturday, September 15, 2001

Back in Scotland and menial job hell

Rowan visiting our new flat.

I have a crap job to go to now eight hours a day and a never ending messy flat. I don't understand-this place seems to need cleaning tons more than anywhere else I have ever lived.

The news about New York has been shocking, though I am feeling numbed by the constant news coverage now. Didn't really have any effect on Scotland at all, except for flight cancellations. Blair says he's shoulder to shoulder with the US, making people here worry about Britain in military strikes on Afghanistan, though I'm not sure it would be such a bad thing to see the Taliban government fall.

Things are rather unexciting here. I'm happy to be back with Alan, but I hate the damn shite filing job with the Royal Bank of Scotland. It's as mindless as the damn Tim Horton's job. I haven't really met anyone here, so all my friends are people going to classes with Alan and I think that once uni starts, they are going to end up his friends really, since he'll be spending time with them and I'll be off filing shite bits of paper in binders with my brain on idle. I hated the last year of my degree but I wish I was back doing it now. Can't please me, obviously. Andrea is coming over in November though, which I am looking forward to a lot. Sounds a bit childish, but I want someone who I don't have to share with Alan! I expected to be doing tons of exciting things, but I suppose that was unrealistic since I am living here and lots of life is sort of boring and normal.

Saturday, August 18, 2001

Jenny visits Edinburgh

The picture Jenny took of me on the roof of the Museum of Scotland

Things here are good, Jenny arrived on Wednesday and we've been wandering around with her. We're going up into the highlands tomorrow for a couple of days, up around Inverness.

We had a dinner party last night and the kitchen is a mess! Off to clean up.

On the way home from the Highlands, Alan's Crannog Centre

Saturday, August 11, 2001

Fringe Fun

Alan having a caricature drawn at the Fringe Festival, on the Royal Mile.

Tuesday, August 07, 2001

I'm baaaaaack!

The Castle.

The view from Arthur's Seat.

Sunday, July 15, 2001

Nothing cool happens in Bolton

I've never seen zorba the Greek, or read it in fact. Perhaps I will add it to my list, though the list has not been moving so quickly what with all the jobs. No Logo is taking me forever, interspersed with small amounts of the women travel anthology. I tried three times to read the Hobbit and never got more than 100pgs through it. Don't know why really.

Work is very, very depressing. A read a quote once that people who do menial, boring work tend to have menial boring personalities. Ha, no doubt. I keep myself sane by reading no logo on my breaks cause it makes me feel somewhat intellectual and keeps my moral outrage working, rather than stagnating like most of my brain. I don't so much mind the number of hours I am working, but that I never have a full day off. The damn people at dairy queen keep scheduling me for both evening shifts on the weekend which they weren't supposed to be doing. It is just too much to never be able to relax for a full 24 hours, so I am stuck with it this weekend but am going to ask for the Saturday after off.

Added to that is the stress of the SWAP paper work-I need to get everything organized to take down Saturday, which includes fun visits to the bank, which is hard when I work during bank hours. I feel like my mind is constantly replaying all the things I have to do, over and over, so that even when I am at home I have this constant level of stress. I am doing it all so this so I can go to Scotland.

I've heard amnesiac is supposed to be the best album of the summer. There are lots of great albums out lately-new weezer, new REM, etc. I must admit, seeing U2 was probably the highlight of my summer. It all seems downhill from here (well, until Scotland anyway).

Tuesday, June 12, 2001

My first promotion - a slightly better paid lackey

My friend Deb is stuck drinking American beer. We have a joke here in Canada-how is American beer like making love in a canoe? It's fucking close to water!

I just got promoted to section leader at one of my jobs and got a 65 cent raise, making me feel very guilty as it is an ice cream shop and I will be leaving at the beginning of august and not staying the whole summer. They do know I was thinking of leaving soon... Anyway, I am a big ball of guilt, having also been promoted above several employees who have been around much longer (though they are younger). The drawback to the whole thing is I am now working Monday to Friday all the time, which means I work for 13.5 hours each day, five days a week-I do have weekends off now.

As you can see from my work schedule, I don't have much of a social life. Not many exciting folks in Bolton anyway. I have my first full day off in four weeks this Sunday and I want to go shopping-not to spend my money though, I am saving for Scotland.

I am off to bed at an insanely early hour-after a quick beer and TV show.

Saturday, June 02, 2001

Life of a Tim Horton's Employee

Well, life here in Bolton sucks. I work constantly and it is starting to get to me and I am rather irritable all the time. It is hard to be spending all my time doing stupid, menial jobs seven days a week (the only day off I have had in two weeks is yesterday when I went to Kingston to graduate). More annoying is all the people who hear me say how shit it all is and then tell me it's not for long. Well, it is for at least another two months and frankly that's more than long enough. Then people imply that I am about to go on a two year vacation in Scotland-I'm getting a WORK visa, for god's sake, and will probably end up with fairly crap jobs over there.

I graduated yesterday and it was ok. My parents and one set of grandparents came. I hated university so much this past year that I just wanted it over and fuck the marks. I don't intend to go on in classics anyway, though I may someday go back and do something else.

I leave on august 6th, later than I wanted but it was hard to get a flight into Scotland as opposed to London-I ended up with a flight into Glasgow. I have a friend visiting with a few days of my arrival, so I am taking some time off to relax before starting work over there. I don't think Alan will be working then either, so it will be nice to just hang out a bit.

I plan to stay for the full two years allowed by my visa, so people can visit whenever. Alan's parents want to get rid of the futon in his old room, so we are going to put it in our living room and have a place for guests to stay. I am hoping a fair number of people will come visit from Canada.

I am going to go watch a movie I rented-new Waterford girl-it's Canadian and got really fabulous reviews.

Sunday, May 20, 2001

Peace and quiet

I spent the nicest day yesterday-my entire family left to go and open up the cottage. It was so quiet and peaceful the whole day. I slept in, read (Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks, now finished), ate lots of pineapple. But the nicest thing was the silence-no blaring TV or loud music or people shouting through the house. I think maybe I am one of those people who are meant to live alone.

Last Thursday I went to see the free REM concert in Toronto and to hand in my SWAP application. I was buzzing all day long-partly the excitement, partly because jenny kept me up all night talking on the phone!

I have had my hair cut, not sure if I mentioned it, and it is short-it freaks me out still whenever I comb it. But my passport photos turned out quite well :)

I start work Tuesday at Tim's, but not until Friday at dairy queen. Such an exciting week!

I have decided to start reading no logo by Naomi Klein cause I think it will be amusing to take it in to work for breaks. I am having quite the literate summer, but needed a break from fiction after having a bit of an overdose in the past three weeks. I wish there was some sort of funky book club around-I think it would be fun. I just own sooooo many unread books.

And I may be going to see a U2 concert this week.

Tuesday, May 15, 2001

A very Canadian job

I am now a happy, cheerful, smiling Tim Horton's employee. I feel a bit bad cause at the interview it sounded like they were hoping I would stick around for a fairly long time, ie a year, but I did imply that I was taking some time to decide what to do with my life next, ie leave and do something better. I then proceeded to apply for a part time job at Dairy Queen-because it is close to Tim's and I might as well have two shite jobs if I am going to have one. So I have an interview for that tomorrow evening. I start next week at Tim's, so one more weekend of freedom. Can't wait to start wearing that hairnet-speaking of which I am having a significant portion of my hair cut off tomorrow.

Thursday, April 26, 2001

The end is nigh

I had my final exam last night and it was brilliant. A bit of a hard exam actually but I think I did fairly well and more excitedly it took me about 40 mins out of the three hours, after which my friend Jas and I went and got totally plastered at a pub on campus. We had 16.5 ounces of alcohol-I was nice and tipsy. I called Alan in spite of the fact that it was like 6 am over there, rather amusing!

My housemate Gord has turned up again after disappearing for three or four days and his girlfriend and mother not knowing where he was and calling incessantly. He will be leaving again on Saturday. I think I will have the place to myself on Monday, which will make moving out a lot smoother. Time to start packing tonight-I have been taking it easy today due to my hungover state.

More drinking and dancing tomorrow-being finished is fucking awesome! Though I don't think it will hit me that I am not coming back in September for awhile.

anyway, I am off to cook something with the remaining contents of my fridge. Should be interesting!

Tuesday, March 27, 2001

To formal or not to formal?

Argh-I had quite happily decided I didn't want to go to the damn formal, but now everybody is talking about going again. I know I would have fun if all my friends are there and I do have someone to go with but damn is it expensive. Right now I don't feel much like going to Ottawa either-just soooo tired and cranky. Damn research essays! Alan and I have come to the conclusion that I will be moving over to Scotland late July which means moving in with my parents for three months! I am not happy about the idea but it really makes the most sense-I totally can't afford to pay rent and save up as much as I need. I will survive it no doubt. And then I suppose I won't see them for two years-should be time to get over the mental trauma of it all. Only a week now till Alan is here!

Friday, March 23, 2001

A snapshot of me

YOUR LIVING ARRANGEMENT? three annoying guys i met when i moved in-one's a prick, one's a hermit, and one's permanently at his girlfriend's but soon to be living with my darling boyfriend, after a stint living with my PARENTS argh

WHAT BOOK ARE YOU READING NOW? Cunt, by Inga Muscio, i kid you not-third wave feminist book for essay

WHAT'S ON YOUR MOUSE PAD? a picture of my dog



FAVORITE SMELLS? vanilla, lavender, forest, the smell after rain

LEAST FAVORITE SMELL? cigarette smoke, my housemate's cooking

FAVORITE SOUND? dido's cd at the moment

WORST FEELING IN THE WORLD? not having the rent money!, knowing you are about to see the dentist

WHAT IS THE FIRST THING YOU THINK OF WHEN YOU WAKE UP IN THE MORNING? that i need to pee, i'm hungry, i'm going to be late for class, then maybe about alan


MANY RINGS BEFORE YOU ANSWER THE PHONE? if i don't get it by three the machine picks up, generally two

FUTURE CHILD'S NAME? kaitlin, adian, ??? not sure about the future child though-how about a future fish? that level of responsibility i could handle.

WHAT IS MOST IMPORTANT IN LIFE? Love, food, shelter, a good book

FAVORITE FOOD? something someone else cooks, presently addicted to cappacino yogurts, things that come in pastery (not pie, but dinner type things)



DO YOU LIKE TO DRIVE FAST? i don't drive



IF YOU COULD MEET ONE CELEBRITY WHO WOULD IT BE? claire daines, jude law, joe fiennes.

FAVORITE ALCOHOLIC DRINK? pimms and lemonade, chocolate martinis



IF YOU COULD HAVE ANY JOB YOU WANTED WHAT WOULD IT BE? archaeologist in some beautiful warm place

IF YOU COULD HAVE YOUR HAIR ANY WAY? actually, i like my hair, though it needs a cut-it's a bit too long right now

EVER BEEN IN LOVE? am presently

FAVORITE MOVIE? baraka or an affair to remember

WHAT'S UNDER YOUR BED? a tool box, a book of extra shampoo etc, a box full of binders/paper, my suitcase, an iron, shoe polish, and lots of dust bunnies

FAVORITE NUMBER? i have never understood why i am supposed to have one

FAVORITE SPORT TO WATCH? none-maybe the olympics for the patriotic element

Saturday, January 13, 2001

Ranting and Alan in Canada

Alan came over at Christmas which was soooo wonderful. It has been a bit of a bad year, considering that a lot of my friends graduated and left last year and I live with three absolute morons. I am at Queen's and finding the year immensely boring. If I hadn't signed something saying that I would complete my forth year I might not have come back. As it is, I am such a major slacker and just don't much care about my classes. One of them is correspondence and as such I barely look at it. I am performing in a Greek play Iphigenia at Aulis for one class which should be amusing-we get to drink cocktails with umbrellas during the performance though, so if nothing else we will all get hammered. I am counting the days till graduation. I have precious little money this year and so I have a job at the law library on campus. Woo hoo-damn are they arrogant. I need to find a second job now that will last into the summer and I am soooo looking forward to that (insert sarcasm here).

Working holiday visas are frustrating. If I end up with a working holiday visa, I will only be able to work for a year out of the two so I will need to do some pub work under the table I think. I am trying to figure out how much time people actually spend working and if it is more than the advised 50% max. The visa thing is craziness-they have apparently changed it so that the two years starts from the day it is approved but of course they always say not to book your flight UNTIL it is approved. Then they say that it normally takes five days to process but you should send it in 8 weeks in advance. Then there will be two months less time on the visa. I am hoping the travel agent who informed me of this is on crack, but I somehow doubt it!

At first it was weird having Alan visit Bolton, especially having him sleep in my childhood bed!!! My parents were much cooler than I thought they would have been. We went around Toronto, down to Niagara Falls, and to Kingston.