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The Moon is Up

Last night I decided to read instead of writing comments for the pictures I promised. I didn't do most of the things I was supposed to do. I read. John Steinbeck's masterpiece in my eyes is The Moon is Down. It is a story about a Norwegian town that was invaded by the Nazis during WWII. I read all 142 pages in about an hour and a half. It was compelling, moving, motivational, telling, and human. It gave personality to the Germans as much as it did to the Norwegians. It talked about war as only one can talk about war after it has been experienced, but in a present tense that was entirely believable.

If you haven't read anything by Steinbeck lately (or ever you sad, sad, literature-deprived people) this is the one to read. Now I've read The Pearl, Of Mice and Men, most of The Red Pony, and of course the never-ending Grapes of Wrath. But this is the book. (It was first printed in the very early 50's if you are having trouble finding it.)

Anyway, besides being moved by literature, I have also been moved by tax forms. Yes, nothing makes me want to open my huge bay windows and throw myself (or the idiot(s) who designed tax law) out than filling out paperwork created by the US government. To get my money back this year I have to file a full 1040, a foreign wage form (9 something), a SC 1040, a SC Non-resident form, and probably some sort of deferment, because I cannot figure out how to do all this itemizing myself and will require the assistance of my father.

The bad news is, I can't really defer, because I have to turn in my FAFSA so I can get financial aid next year, and the FAFSA requires that I have at least the 1040 filled out (which requires the foreign form first). Boy, I am one lucky girl. The good news is that all of these forms come with instruction booklets to help me out. If I were to actually read them all it would sum up to something close to 250 pages and 97 worksheets for the measly $100 dollars I'll be getting back. I wonder if I offer to just let them have it if they'll leave me alone.

Aside from all that, this week has been highly uneventful. I have spent a good amount of time procrastinating. We finally got out washer and dryer - which was cool until I realized that the entire inside of the washer was moldy because some idiot had not let it dry out before shipping it. And if you have ever tried to clean the inside of metal grated, mold infested three door (yes, really) washing machine, I think you'd know what a futile task I was going for.

Insert good uses for ShowerPower cleaner (it works on the mold in the shower!). I sprayed it on and left. Today, all the mold looked dead (or at least flatter and less colorful). This lead me to thinking it would be easier to run the machine and let a towel clean the inside itself. I don't actually have any cleaning towels persay, so I used the two throw rugs. I'll see how its looking and let you know after I go upstairs.

*The best part of this new washer was not however the mold. It was when they attached the pipes to the wall, before they attached the machine, and then just left the pipes uncapped in such a way that everytime the toilet was flushed water rushed out of the PVC in a fountain like fashion. I ingeniously used our garbage can as a water trap so the floor wouldn't flood. Fun times in a 150 year old building.*

So now I will get around to telling you other things. Like, congratulations to Adella and Tom on being engaged! Yeah for that. Thank you to the hundreds of people that have served as references for me lately ... the letters have started coming in, and I'll let you know the results as soon as I have made a decision on what I am doing. I am still completely dumbfounded as to what I'll be doing this summer. Suggestions welcome. The Quote of the Day is: "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former." ~Albert Einstein. The internet will not let me upload more than one photo at a time, so I have only managed to get like 5 photos in a place you can see them. Sucks to be both of us on that account. Also proves Einstein's thought about stupidity.

The moon was so full here the other night the courtyard looked like there were searchlights turned on in it. I don't think I've ever seen more moonlight - it blinded me from seeing stars. I can't tell how it looks tonight, because I am here with you, but I'll say that if I carry only one visual with me when I go back to the states it will be the night sky without city lights and a fabulous moon and stars you can see in such clarity...

I know many of you will be having your corned beef and cabbage tonight with Irish soda bread and some sort of whisky, brandy, a pint, or a coffee with Bailey's. But if you can, (in a sober state) go outside and look up. Know that about 6 hours before you are looking, I was here, doing the same thing. As I listen to Into the West I feel that the moonlight and this song are perfect imagery for what will all too soon be my last night here. I love this shore, this land of ancient battles and history. I love it and yearn to stretch my fingers to the horizon and grab my homeland and pull it closer. Then I look up and remember how close I am.

Love always, ~Heather


discipleassisi said…
i love that song... and that night sky thing is one of my favorite memories of australia btw. one night in kakadu we went for sort of "nature walk." i quote it because it was really too dark to see nature (though we did see a snake by flashlight - my original interest in seeing that great continent - that one of our guides caught). it was so dark we were holding hands to follow the trail we were on because we couldn't see one another 2 feet away. there was no moon and the stars looked fake, like a movie screen when you can tell it's a piece of black velveteen with reflective-paint stars. only this looked like you could fall in. thus began my hunt to find a tatoo artist who would put the southern cross on the bottom of my heel - i never found one... and. i didn't look very hard :) but i thought it was a cool idea. the milky way in the s. hemisphere is shaped, they say, like an emu guarding her nest. actually it really doeslook like it, once you meet an emu in person. ah the memories.

"lay down your sweet and weary head. night is falling. you have come to journey's end..." love it while you're there, i know you are :)