Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Yesterday was the oh-so-exciting Res Life mid year "retreat." What we were retreating from, I'm not sure. It was basically a time to listen to some cliched PC discussions and to bitch about everything wrong with MHC (ie, the budget). But I was strangely awake for it all. Which was good, because I hadn't slept much. After, I went with Lindsay and Adrianna to the "convenience store" (some clever Mohos have dubbed it the "inconvenience store" in way of protest). The checker guy from Wilder was there, and I had a Silence of the Lambs-esque moment when he started stalking towards me and said in a low voice "Hello, Rebecca..." Yeah. At that point Adrianna decided she was NOT leaving me alone there! It turned into a normal enough discussion about the weather, luckily. We also had a rather cool hall committee meeting at The Thirsty Mind, where I had a yummy decaf vanilla latte and sat in a beat up old chair.

Last night I was SO tired, I actually climbed into bed while talking to Andrew a bit after 11. I then promptly fell asleep. I woke up again at 3 am, and decided it was a prime time to take a shower. So I did. Then I let my hair dry a bit, and went to sleep.

I woke up this morning, slept in a bit, and woke up again. Then I went on my Kobe walk and ran some errands. Then I had a a "social outcast lunch" (meaning I sat by myself in an insanely crowded dining hall) before going to walk Newton. I still haven't gotten the rest of my books (maybe it would have been good to preface that with a comment about how I went to check my mail. oops), but I did get my final paper back from Quillian. It was a "satisfying end to the course" but not quite the same quality as my mid term paper. Argh, I will always be trying to beat that paper!

Continuing with my day of solo adventures, I read some English theses for about an hour. Lots of original poetry, plays, stories... someone wrote on Pynchon's Crying of Lot 49 (among other things). Then I felt like a grown up going to pick up my dry cleaning. Simple pleasures, right?

I fell asleep again this afternoon, and Dale came a couple of times to wake me up. I got to dinner rather late, and had a nice meal with Lindsay and Irena. Yay for Wilder being open again!! When I got back to my room I didn't know what to do with myself. I had a very active evening. Looking for things to do before classes start tomorrow, I redecorated my door (actually it was hardly decorated in the first place), organized my top desk drawer, made a collage, and tried to get my paper lamp shade on a lamp (not exactly successful on that one).

So yeah, in honor of the first day of classes I've decided to dress up tomorrow!

Monday, January 26, 2004

To begin with the beginning:

Thursday: I don't really remember Thursday anymore. I think I walked Newton and Kobe, I'm sure I ate stuff, but mostly, I wrote my paper. I decided the weekend WOULD be free and happy, so I sat down around 3 and started writing my Sappho's Muse paper. I was definitely the first one to hand it in!

Friday: Jill emailed to cancel my Kobe walking duties for today, so I had an unexpected amount of time on my hands. After my last Sappho class, and a weird thrown together lunch, I cleaned my room, braved hurricane-like winds to get another rug from a student living off campus, and got ready for Andrew's arrival! For dinner we went to Blanchard, but the new station wasn't even serving anything good. So we just stuck to the old menu. After, we watched Ed with Korisha and then headed back to my room.

Saturday: We got a fairly early start today! After eatching "brunch" at Blanchard we went to Springfield to see Love Actually. It was really great and sad in parts but always entertaining. Then we went to the mall so I could return my two right shoes. I proceeded to buy a toggle sweater and a too short skirt (which we'll be returning next weekend). I returned the toggle sweater after finding another one very similar for less.

Afterwards, we hurried to Northampton for dinner. I met Phoebe (an Amherst friend of Andrew's) and her bf and we had a happy dinner and then ice cream for dessert. It was really cold though! I don't know why we feel like eating ice cream in this weather, but it's just too good to resist. We had a brief stop in a candy store before saying our goodbyes and speed walking to the car!

Since we got back home at a decent hour and SNL was a repeat, we didn't know what to do with ourselves. So we talked and relaxed and got to bed rather late.

Sunday: We made it to brunch where they weren't serving the promised banana bread french toast we saw on the menu. But we did get a chance to schedule a Balderdash (beyond balderdash, actually) game with Korisha. And Dale somehow made it to MHC just in time to eat brunch with us! After finishing a weird movie that I don't think we ever really got into (The Everlasting Piece), we learned how to play Balderdash and proceeded to win! Everyone else was sick of playing by the time we won, but... oh well =)

At this point we were quite hungry, so we went out to the weird Chinese food place where the waiter was a little, er, stand-offish? Same instrumental music and everything, but we've now figured out that it's on shuffle play, because last time "Dream" was followed by that song from Ghost and this time "Have you ever seen the rain" was the following song. Decided that the huge goldfish in the fish tank must be the object of some cult worship. Then we watched Y tu mama tambien, which was pretty racy but I think we got the driving points. Then it was beddy bye time!

Now I'm trying to stay awake before getting ready for Res Life training! Yes, again, res life training... it never ends!

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

This morning I woke up, oddly, before my alarm even rang. After last night's drifting off and having a bad dream REM stage within like 45 minutes of being in bed, I would have thought my body would want to sleep some more. But no, it woke up promptly at 8 AM. So after lounging in bed awhile I eventually dragged myself out and got to class on time after a quick breakfast. I was late for lunch, as I stayed after to get approval from the professor for my paper idea. So tomorrow I need to write my paper, and then Friday I'll turn it in so the weekend can stay free!

I had my last creative writing group, only three of us today. It was short, but pretty productive. Then I had some free time before waiting waaay too long at the bus stop. I stood there, staring into the sunset, looking for the Amherst bus, for at least 15 minutes! It did arrive (luckily), and Lindsay and I chatted on the way. We had another super leisurely dinner, and met a certain Emily R. of Valentine, who filled us in on the Amherst view of things. They do, in fact, call us "Mo hos," and we're seen as rather, well, I'd say floozy to sum up. Of course my explanation for this is that the only Mohos people see are the ones that get off this campus, which generally is the same thing as saying, the ones that are drunk and partying. Anyway. We had a good dinner, despite the fact that the dishwasher was out of commission (which meant that we ate off styrofoam with plastic utensils). Lindsay bottled some pineapple juice. And I stole some tea.

Our class was pretty awesome. Prof. Sanderson seemed rather excited at the prospect of colored chalk, and proceeded to write on the chalkboard in blue and pink (she eventually thought better of it after the color rubbed off on her, too). She talked about how marriages become less happy when the first baby is born. But, as good news, she told us that all marriages experience a decrease in satisfaction. Her explanation: "You know, like we all like oxygen but we don't appreciate it every day." Pretty clever, huh? And her conclusion: "Marriage is a whole hell of a lot of sacrifice." We clapped.

On the bus ride home, it was just me and Lindsay. We talked relationships and guys (of course, after our class, who wouldn't!) Our bus driver pulled over in Amherst on the way, left the bus running, and ran across the street to a little gas station mini mart. Me and Lindsay were rather confused, and considered taking over and driving ourselves back to MHC! Luckily he came back before we resorted to such drastic measures.

Now I'm waiting for my clothes to dry, as they were dripping wet from the washing machine. They're on their second dryer run as I type. Yay for over priced, moldy, decrepit washing machines!

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Back at MHC after the best weekend ever, it's kind of hard adapting! But the problems of constructing my spring semester schedule and obtaining textbooks has been offering plenty of distraction. Here's where I was and what I was doing:

Friday: After a botched attempt at french manicuring my nails (yeah I know I'm making up verbs) I swore off self-nail painting (although I know I won't stick to that). I finished getting ready just in time, dragged my baggage downstairs, and had a surprise meeting with Ashley! Then Faith (the kind soul that drives me to/from Boston) showed up, and I was on my way! I realized soon into the trip (within the first, oh, ten minutes) that I hadn't eaten much that day. The next logical realization was, of course, that I was hungry. Looking through my bag I had one fruit snack packet and two fortune cookies. I ate the fruit snacks and then had a fortune cookie for dessert. The creepy thing? I picked the one that read "You are almost there." So you know where I'm going from now on when I need advice (no, not the Career Development Center or my advisor): Fortune Cookies.

For awhile I kept awake in the car by playing The Alphabet Game. But after getting through the alphabet one and a half times I got rather bored, as playing against one's self isn't very challenging. So I fell asleep. By the time I woke up we were nearly there, and I needed to pee. I wandered around the Alewife station until some woman (who must have heard me lamenting on the phone to Andrew that I needed the bathroom) came up and directed me to the restroom, warning me that she didn't know how clean it was. Indeed, it wasn't just not clean, it was filthy. But no one else was coming in, so I used the big handicapped stall to keep my baggage safe and prevent me from bumping into any mysterious substances on the walls, etc. By the time I got back to the pick up area, Andrew was there!

We ate at a great Thai restaurant in Harvard Square, and ducked into stores as necessary to avoid the cold while walking about. And we got to see Big Fish, which was wonderful but really sad, I was all choked up for the last like half hour! I get a little sentimental about movies... Anyways, we then had a little supermarket visit and dessert and attempted to start a fire (in the fireplace, don't worry).

Saturday we had a leisurely breakfast and then went shopping in Boston. Andrew found cushy down slippers and I bought two right shoes (which we will be returning NEXT weekend =/ ). Andrew found the one last pink unicorn shirt at the American Eagle, in a size XL. But, after taking his advice that I should ask someone that worked there if they had any left in the back, I was presented with an XS, a small, and a medium! So now me and Mer have matching shirts!

For dinner I had my first real not in a dining hall sushi experience! And it was surprisingly yummy. And after picking up kindling on the walk home (we must have looked sketchy rummaging about in the dark in the little plots of grass), we had a real fire! Ahh, very romantic =)

Sunday we had a great brunch in Jamaica Plain (Lindsay you will be familiar with this place?), and even though it was in the 30s and "slushing" (mix of snowing and raining, I think it should be a verb), it felt downright balmy after the negative temps BEFORE wind chill. Keeping in the Asian food theme, we had Thai food for dinner! We watched this crazy new show on HBO called "The L Word" which was pretty racey and fun to watch. The next day was kinda sad just because it was the last day I could spend there! We ran some errands, watched Flirting with Disaster, had some ice cream, and stayed up late.

So that brings us up to today! I took the bus home, got a lot of reading done, walked the dogs, checked out the textbook situation, had lunch and dinner with Korisha, and watched some hilarious American Idol try outs! And now I need to get to bed!!

Thursday, January 15, 2004

So cold here. Yesterday I whined to FM until someone came over and ripped my curtains off, a side effect of the intended action: to seal the edges of the windows. Definitely has cut down on the cold draft effect.

Lindsay and I decided to try out the Amherst College cuisine while we're on campus for the psych course. Turns out centralized dining doesn't seem that bad at all. They have JUICES! And not just orange and apple juice! But, me and Lindsay got yelled at when we accidentally left our silverware on our trays instead of throwing them down the specified shoots. Oops.

Last night was the first ever scrabble match between Andrew, my mum, and myself. Andrew won, mom beat me, and I definitely lost. Typical!

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

Yay Merrie! I just read your blog, a perfect documentation of the weather conditions back in Oregon. I especially loved the snippets from the Letters to the Editor: I hope that superintendent loses her job over such poor decision making. All she had to do was turn on the weather forecast and her decision should have been made. Especially considering that it rarely snows so much in our county, it's ridiculous to risk the health and safety of children just so they can get to school late, sit in freezing classrooms, and then endure a perilous journey home.

Speaking of bad weather conditions, the "high" tomorrow will be, oh, 7 degrees! I will be trudging about between my classics course, lunch, creative writing get-together, dinner at Amherst College, and close relationships class. Busy day! Looking forward to the weekend!

Monday, January 12, 2004

I am finally back on campus!! Andrew rescued me from Windy's house, and we had a good weekend despite the frigid weather. Saturday we stayed in the village commons, played scrabble (not just scrabble, deluxe scrabble) and ate dinner. SNL wasn't, well, as good as it could have been. Being John Malkovich (I hope I'm spelling that right) was a brilliant movie, why didn't I see that when it first came out?? Sunday we did lots of new things: Andrew had his first Holyoke Mall experience (we bought sweaters! I refrained from buying another really really cute scarf set), we both had our first Springfield $2 movie theater trip (second run movies, since you never see everything the first time around, a nice cheap option! School of Rock was much funnier than I expected, and the little blonde girl was so so cute), then our first trip to this Mexican and South American restaurant in Noho, La Cazuela (really yummy, I gorged myself. but the rice and beans aren't as good as the Crazy Pepper's back home). We had a scrabble game in the evening with Korisha and Emily, Andrew definitely won but I was close!!

Today it was back to the routine... I did most of the discussion leading in my "group" but that was fine with me, I had lots to say about everything. And I had an, uhm, overly eventful Kobe walk... First she dragged me to the neighbors' house for dog biscuits, then she refused to move from their driveway until they gave ME the dog biscuits. Then someone's dog that was obviously loose, no leash or anything, followed us and got Kobe really excited, which meant lots of tugging and lunging that, well, isn't too safe with slick roads and sidewalks. So I dragged Kobe back to her house, the other dog was like, in the middle of route 116, and then finally after I got Kobe safely situated inside, the other dog left. Yeah, not cool to let your dog roam around loose on busy streets...

Dale came up for a visit today! She went to a very lackluster dinner with me and Lindsay, then accompanied me to Amherst for a movie showing, Beautiful Girls. Which we loved! The entire room was laughing when Will was going after the 13 year old girl, and I was practically in Dale's lap when Birdy was getting beaten up.

Tomorrow is going to be a busy day...!

Friday, January 09, 2004

Uh oh, I haven't updated in awhile! Uhm... I'll try to remember stuff...

The rest of Monday: After realizing that me and Lindsay had a movie to attend that night, I raced to Windy's (basically so that silly dog could piddle and eat some cheese off the top of his dog food that he still hadn't eaten from his previous dinner) and then back again to scarf down some food at the rockies and literally run with Lindsay to the bus stop! The movie was pretty good, Singles. And it started snowing so I had a nice very late night walk back to Windy's. And I took a nice bath, dragging my laptop into the bathroom for music!

Tuesday I blissfully did nothing but laze, give Windy a couple of walks, and read. Lots of reading. Finished Slaughterhouse 5 and read all the Sappho fragments and the packet of poems for comparison. Also started the novel we're reading in the classics course. Oh, and Mum called, saving me from falling asleep in the afternoon! There was a "snow squall" during my evening walk, it was a clear night and suddenly there was a gust of wind and snow just started falling. Within about ten minutes there was half an inch on the ground. Luckily it did not continue at this rate!

Weds. was another crazy day (like Monday). Walked Windy, walked to school, had my classics class (that sounded funny, didn't it?), ate lunch at the Rockies, had a brief kinda-sorta creative writing meeting (as in one person showed up and we chatted for awhile), walked back to Windy's to give him a walk and dinner, walked back to school for a lovely thanksgiving-esque dinner with Lindsay, had a leisurely walk to the bus, had an awesome first relationships class at amherst, bussed back to MHC, walked to Windy's while it snowed very lightly. Then I took a bath and relaxed!

Thursday: Another day like Tuesday. See a pattern developing? I slept, read, watched some "must see tv." Friends was great, Ross in a woman's sweater... disturbing. The Apprentice is more entertaining than I expected, unfortunately I had to take a break to shower. Good news: I'm only a packet and a chapter away from having my reading for Monday done!

Friday: I'm sitting here, having woken up indecently early (6:45 am) in order to check my email for creative writing stories. Uhm, no one has sent one yet! So if they send them all an hour before class, obviously I can't comment much on them since I won't have time to read! Oh dear. Well, we can always read everything aloud since there are only 8 possible people who could show up, and if it's anything like Weds not everyone will...

Good news of the morning, grades are posted and I maintained my A's!

Monday, January 05, 2004

Thursday morning I woke up around 9 am for my antibiotic, and looking out the front door I saw snow, and only snow. Everything rather foggy and white, steady snow falling. Not thinking much of it beyond "that'll be fun to take a walk in later with Mer," I went back to bed. I woke up to widespread panic. Tim was doomsdaying, Mom was looking for a ride to the airport, and I started a whirlwind packing spree. All caused by some snow. Yeah. So Mom and I waited for 2 hours for a bus that showed up after we had left and decided on a Plan B... Tim drove us down an extra tire (in case we had tire problems...) and me and mom slowly, slowly drove to Portland. Actually we kept up a decent clip, but we had PLANNED to drive slowly...

In Portland, the cheapo motel was booked up, so we went to a nicer hotel and had a nice dinner and ice cream and I attempted to get some sleep. That didn't work out, however. Very nervous at different points. Esp. in the plane after taking a nap. The panic hits me after i've drifted off and forgotten about it.

Everything went smoothly, despite my worrying. It was lonely at first, being back in South Hadley, but Andrew surprised me and drove out on Saturday! So now I'm recovering from another lovely weekend, we wandered around in Northampton (and I had ice cream!), fixed dinners together, watched Annie Hall & Mona Lisa Smile, and played games. I enjoyed Mona Lisa Smile more than I thought I would!

In a particularly bright moment I didn't mark in my planner that my J term class started today, so I had a panicked run over to the prof's office! Luckily he caught me up and I'm ready to start the reading!!

Now I'm rather hungry... will update more later!

Thursday, January 01, 2004

Monday night the pipes froze. Which meant that we didn't have water. Which meant that Mum's emergency water stash (ie, the water she stores in old pop bottles and milk jugs under the front porch "in case there's a terrorist attack out here"). Which meant that we were all a little grumpy about the water being icy cold, and, well, not so readily available.

At some point Tim identified the point that was frozen. Luckily, Mom prevented him from using a propane torch. Instead, he used a hair dryer to warm up the pipe. Cries of "It's dripping!" and "It's running!" and "We have WATER!!!!" were heard throughout the house, as we turned on every faucet full blast. Then for some reason Tim climbed on top of the shed and fiddled with the electricity (turning it off, then on, then off and on again). Somehow he slid off and fell. But he's ok now, except for a rather sore back.

After the madness ended (as much as it ever ends around here) Mum and I headed out for the Dalles. We had wildly successful trips to Maurices and JcPenney's and Fred Meyer's. I picked out a shirt and sweater for Mum, and she got some cute flattering jeans. Yay Mum! I bought lots of cute stuff. Mum almost lost her JcPenney's gift card in the bathroom of the store, but luckily she ran up at closing time and found it after realizing it wasn't in her wallet.

Fun times, shopping.

Today Mer went with me to a Crazy Pepper lunch with Audrey, Joanna, & Lindsey. We had lots of catching up to do! It was lots of fun, I brought pictures of me and Andrew and the twins had all sorts of updates about our class. I never hear any of the gossip!

After, me and Mer watched the third Lord of the Rings. Wow, amazing, fantastic, perfect. Makes you sad when it's over because, well, it's over, and you don't live in the Shire or with elves or exciting battles of good vs. evil. Hell, you don't even live in a time when you can easily identify what good and evil are. I guess that's why they call them fantasy. We could speculate on why fantasy movies are suddenly so popular in mainstream culture...

But, anyway. So now I have either reading those books to look forward to, or the next fantasy movie that comes out. The Last Unicorn should be awesome. I wish they'd make movies out of The Last Vampire and The Blue Sword.

Tonight was kind of crazy. Scott and Linda brought Nibbles, the very old and very strange red-nosed dog with gas problems. We ate, talked, watched some of the John Lennon video and Twilight Zone episodes. Then of course we watched the ball drop! Happy New Year! =)

Funny things:

"Jack Lalanne isn't dead, he says it'd ruin his image if he died." - Tim after a quarrel with Scott over whether or not JL has passed away yet or not. Scott had some story about him dying while dragging a tugboat in the English Channel or something equally far-fetched.

"A tree that's green
Is a sight to be seen
A tree that's brown
Can burn your house down"
- clever poem brought to you by the Hood River Fire Department.

"I still wouldn't let someone with AIDS lick the salt off my potato chips." - Merrie, very late at night while eating Pringles. Merrie just now, not so late and perfectly in her right mind: "Do you think that might be offensive to some people though?" Me: "uhm...no?"