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Showing posts from February, 2006

Jitters

All this travelling around, and I still have jitters. Caroline is coming tomorrow and I am going to meet her in Paris. The trip consists of a train ride, a metro/RER ride, waiting at the airport, a return trip to Paris, dropping luggage at our hotel, and then hitting the city for a little while. All before catching some zzz's and taking a metro to a bus to an airport to go to Spain. Think I've covered a few miles in the last week?

Anyway, I am nervous because I have never had to plan a trip for more than just me before. If I screw up, no big deal. If I screw up now, I ruin her vacation. So, I guess that means I can't screw up. Must get everything done, must work hard. Must get going.

Sorry about not writing about the other countries and the trip to Isabelle's in Nancy yet. If I have time tonight I am going to do it. If I don', I'll write it up on the train tomorrow and then add it with all the details about the trip to Spain next week. You'll get …

Luxembourg

Wednesday we left Nancy and headed home. We decided to stop in the capitol city of Luxembourg (country of the same name). We saw tons of stuff (again, lots of pictures), ate lunch, and took a self-directed mini-tour. So, for more fun come back soon!

Nancy

Monday and Tuesday I was in Nancy, France. This is in the Lorraine region. I went with Alice to go and visit friends there: Isabelle and Anne-Hélène. We had a fabulous time and I took tons of pictures.

I am not going to be able to give you a million details about the trip yet, because I am still incredibly slack, however, I at least have added some pictures for your pleasure. The photo above comes from a round ball implanted in the ground to help you see the whole plaza behind you. They are all over Nancy and were a great help in getting both Isabelle and I in this photo of the Place de Stanislov (sp??).

Monday night Isabelle took Alice and I out to dinner. I had the most incredible veal I have ever eaten (cream sauce, melted like butter in your mouth). But the menu had treats from all over Alsace and Lorraine. The look of honor there is the symbol for the fabulous and super intelligent blonds. Aren't my friends stunning?

This last one come with a great story ... we were walking arou…

Belgium

I got to go to Belgium on Sunday. We went to the town of Dinant. It is a fabulous little place with alot of history. Check back for more information and photos soon!

Better

I feel better today. I applied for a job at PBS. I scoured the internet for possible internships and found two other possible jobs that I could do next year while taking classes. I wasn't even bummed when most of the jobs required experience (of which I technically have none in the communications field). This could be cool. It could be a beginning. I could be on my way to something.

I did laundry, dishes, and cleaned up my closet (folding etc.). I even made a contraption so I could hang two of my coats on my bedroom door (the hanging side of my closet is about 1.5 feet wide). I am going to make fruit salad and apple pie and something for dinner tonight. (The pie and fruit salad are for tomorrow). I love this feeling.

I hope all is well on the western front. Things here seem to be progressing nicely. Love always, ~Heather

Like a journal

This post is going to be like a journal entry (as if the others aren't), so if you don't care about the random crap in my mind, feel free to stop reading here and catch up again tomorrow.

I'm hungry. Like I said earlier this week, I can't make myself get on a normal schedule. I go back to my room and eat dinner when the internet cuts off - so at like 11. Not good. But considering I didn't have lunch until 4ish, maybe it isn't as messed up as you think.

I'm not unhappy, I mean, I am perfectly content with my life, but at the same time, I feel like so much is missing. I know this feeling is bound to go away soon - but who knows really. I think I am bummed because I have recently discovered that I will be poor for awhile. If I pay my parents back with all the money I saved while I was here, then I only have to earn $4,615 this summer to put myself in a respectable place to start grad school in September. Oh, and in September, I have to have a job that pays somet…

Taking on Democracy

After my time here in France I feel significantly more American. I take pleasure in knowing that I can do something to change my government. I can vote, I can write letters, I can even run for political office if I want to (seriously tempted, by the way). But, I don't want to vote for the person the media told me to. I don't want to have to choose a political party. I don't want to choose my candidate because I figure he must be better than the other guy, and the other guy is terrible.

My time in France has shown me that the whole world has different views on what freedoms are inherent in its citizens. Plenty of places claim to be democratic and freedom loving, but they just aren't. It makes me more proud of my country than ever. (Including all those times we spent singing along to Lee Greenwood on the Hammack's pool deck and last year at the 4th of July Festival.) If you have ever seen the changing of the guard in Arlington cemetery, this feeling is kind o…

"Ding Dong" Dinner

I did not order out for food.

Nor did I eat pre-packaged pastries. (Or any pastries, really.)

The "ding dong" I am referring to is a bell. (Yeah! to everyone who knew that from the beginning!) As it turns out, I am a procrastinator (see my previous blog on this subject). I procrastinate about everything. Recently, as I have no real work to do, I have been procrastinating on eating dinner.

I'm not doing it on purpose, I just get caught up in whatever I am doing here on the internet and don't manage to go upstairs at a reasonable hour. Then I have to actually make the dinner and eat the dinner. I'm not saying any of that is an excuse, I am just trying to explain why it is 8:28 in the evening and I haven't eaten anything since lunch.

Speaking of lunch .... see, I almost did it again. But I am going to resist the temptation. I am going upstairs to eat. I will have my dinner. I'm going now. I really am.

Boy, am I a nerd.

Love always, ~Heather

Highlights

Don't worry, I haven't done anything to my hair.

Saturday was grand and fun and spent doing almost nothing of significance.

Sunday was church, lunch at Sebastian's (which seriously lasted until 4:30 - yes, I am talking about the meal), and then Brokeback Mountain (en v.o.). In the late night/early morning hours, I took some cool pictures of the courtyard full of snow.

Monday (yesterday) was laundry day. I say this because I got up before 8am to start my laundry and it took until around 5pm to get it done. This is because I had 4 loads (each takes 2 hours in the washer - on the "rapid" cycle) and about 20 minutes before the last one was done, I had to run to the grocery store. The grocery store was less fun, as it was raining during the walk, and there was sluch everywhere. It took an hour+ to get there, shop, and get back.

As I walked in, I noticed I had a missed call. Before I could call back, the phone rang. Someone from a summer camp called and offered me …

Treadmill?

This was too funny not to post.

Mom: I really want to get a tread mill for the house
Mom: then I could go in ten min spurts all day long
Me: you could just walk around the house in ten minute spurts

Mom: The treadmill keeps you moving or you fall off
Mom: on the floor you can stand still

Mom: I think Shadow could use a treadmill too
Me: how are you going to teach the dog to walk on the treadmill?
Mom: Have him walk up onto the machine, chain him there and turn it on
Me: isn't that animal cruelty?
Me: what if he falls down
Me: he could choke
Mom: Na - he needs to lose weight - so we're doing him a favor
Me: by maybe killing him?
Mom: we'll catch him until he's trained

Mom: hey he might like it
Me: yeah it'll be like doggy hell
Mom: especially if we tie a doggie bone on the handle
Mom: he'll chase after it
Me: He's gonna get the bone right away and lay down and break that treadmill
Mom: OK so maybe not such a great idea

Best laugh of the day. Hugs and kisses Mom! Love always, ~He…

Vacation Void

I am sitting in a rift. I am not doing anything productive. I slept really late and my greatest achievement today was making this apple crumble thing with honey which may not have been cooked through. It is the first day of winter vacation.

It isn't like I don't have a ton of stuff to get done. FAFSA, taxes (those two need to be done together), correcting papers, finishing up reservations and plans for Caroline's trip, making plans for a Phase 10 night this week, finishing applications for summer camps, shortening my personal statement to 2 pages, creating a budget for next year (based on making enough money this summer to account for all possible debts incurred this year), responding to emails, getting smarter, and finishing the five books I checked out of the library.

In the book regard, I finished The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe last night. As it turns out, I never read the book as a kid, but it was pretty good. I am going to dedicate a whole blog entry to an …

Space and Beyond

So I was reading up on the current events at NASA and discovered a multitude of articles. With a 3.2% budget increase, NASA is still going after putting a man on Mars. But, they need 16 more shuttle missions to finish the space station first, or that technology is going to become obsolete. However, because of shuttle problems, they are grounding many of the space shuttles and paying Russia for cosmonaut led rides to the station. I wonder why they can't send up the supplies in a craft like the Apollo crafts and just keep one crew up there for a really long time. I think it would be pretty easy to send up one shuttle (trying really hard not to screw it up), and then letting it dock with a rocket launched unmanned craft when new supplies were needed. It just seems more effecient. Then again, I am not a rocket scientist.

Invention of Volleyball

1895 Volleyball invented by W. G. Morgan in Massachusetts.

I must say that February 9, 1895 is now one of my favorite historical days. Also, I am thrilled volleyball was invented in the US (though it being such an awesome game, how could it have been invented elsewhere???).

Volleyball is the second most popular sport in the world. For the love of the game, I encourage all of you to get out and play!

Have a good one! Bump, set, spike, kill! ~Heather

Stir Fry Sunday

While walking to church this morning I triped and skinned my elbow and a good portion of the front of both of my legs. It should be noted my elbox was three layers from the stone ground, and I was wearing dress pants. It was a fabulous trip and spill over a metal chain. I step over it all the time ... each time I go to church. I guess I missed today. Anyway, the psalm was something like, "God heals all our wounds." I guess that was fitting.

Also, it should be noted that today is Communication Sunday. We are supposed to pray for communication specialists and journalists in their endeavor to spread truth. As this is apparently always the first Sunday in February and I have never heard of it before, I thought I would share it with you, especially since Communications is my desired field.

Okay, so after church Myriam invited me over for lunch. She and I get along really well because she was an assistant too. She condemns the French system for trying to rid the world of n…

Summer Camp

As it turns out, paying for my life in DC next year is going to be expensive. Also, not being available for interviews and really not wanting to have to ask anyone else for letters of recommendation has left me in a place where I need to find a summer job instead of internship (though there is still internship hope). Fayetteville, NC, where I am bound to be spending part of my summer, is not an easy place to find a job. This is because nobody wants to hire someone who is only around for the summer. As a matter of fact, they basically only want volunteers. I love volunteering, but that isn't going to pay my rent.

Where can you find a job where they don't mind you are only available in the summer? A beach town, an amusement park, or summer camp. I chose to look into summer camps this week. It has been a really fun experience looking at pictures of smiling kids and counselors. I decided to take some initiative and enter myself into a camp staff database. I think that eve…

Strength to Face the Horror

As you have probably already read, Caroline is coming to visit me soon. Amongst a few of the items on her list of things she wanted to do was going to a concentration camp. I have to say that although I have often thought about it, I never thought I would actually go to one. Knowing it was something I should do didn't seem enough to get me over the fear of going. It is frightening and upsetting - and yet so poignantly a part of the history of the world. My spirit and desire to go was bolstered today by a conversation I had with a student.

Hélène is an incredibly sweet girl who struggles against the worst opposition in English - she just can't grasp the "how." We met when I was doing observations in October. However, as I saw a good percentage of the English students that week, I didn't pay a ton of attention. Then we met again at the youth group. She was sitting next to me when we were deciding on stuff to do and we bonded over our love for crafty project…

Fulfilled Craving!

At long last I have fulfilled my craving for peanut butter here in France. No, I did not actually find peanut butter that tastes like peanut butter, but I was able to make peanut butter cookies. That's right, I used the leftover, quite horrible, peanut butter I bought at the beginning of the year to make some fabulous peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies. They were delicious. I have have been satisfied. Hurray!

Not at all related, but (thankfully for my waist) on the same day (yesterday), I got to run a five-one with the volleyball team. Not the all girl one I'll be playing with on Saturday, but with the group of us (first to sit out and the people not playing Saturday) playing against them. I was so worn out after the first five plays, I almost asked to switch back to normal. For those of you who don't know, a 5-1 is a team set-up in volleyball where the same person always takes the 2nd ball (of each hit on your team's side). Also, they are responsible for…