Monday, April 27, 2009

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Pure Words

No pictures or audio or video to post tonight. Just the observation that the heat is welcome after a winter, no matter if it is seventy-seven degrees!

Anyway. I can't believe this semester is wrapping up already... less than a month left, and I won't even be on campus for all but one of the remaining weekends. Then summer, with its job and its relentless heat (which grows tiresome, I will admit; I'm just enjoying it now), will come to shrink my time until study abroad.

But, the sunset tonight was lovely.... pics later!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

¡Tendré un puesto para el verano!

Which, translated, means: I will have a job for the summer!

I will be working at the same warehouse I staffed last summer. Though it was not the most desirable job, I liked parts of it well enough to tolerate it for the two months I was there. And again this summer, I will spend about two months, maybe a little more, packing boxes in that warehouse. It pays very well, for a summer job--it's way above minimum wage!--and I'll get a good many hours, I know. And it will pass the time until....

Study abroad, at the end of August! I'll head onto a plane the last week or so, and spend almost four months out of the country. I'll be immersed into a Spanish-speaking culture... and I will most definitely enjoy it. I may miss my family and my friends--I've been assured that I will--but the experience will be one for a lifetime.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Observations upon landscape photography

1. I really don't mind getting up at five-fifty-five when it means that I get to witness such beautiful things as I saw last week. Or the fog that I saw this morning.

2. I really really wish I had a nicer camera. Or that I could get these things in sharper focus with my current camera. Alas.

3. Tripods fit in a backpack if they are cheap & small enough.

4. Don't rely on your camera battery. Mine died unexpectedly this morning, when I was half a mile away on my bike trying to shoot fog photos.

5. And... computers are quite finicky and uncooperative at the most inconvenient times.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Upon a Wheel's Dysfunction

With every holiday comes the visit to relatives. Not always the same relatives, mind you, but usually at least one set of extended family gets to host us for the weekend. We don't live very near anyone in our extended family, so that's the only time we get to see most of them.

Therefore, Easter = a day trip to my grandpa's to see him and my cousins/aunts & uncles, and an hour-plus trip to said location. I love going to see them, but I almost got roped into driving the van up. I hate driving. Mom usually drives, but she had had maybe six hours of sleep the night before (she's not in college anymore... can't pull that) and had been planning to take a nap.

Well, she was wide awake after lunch, so she drove after all and I was happy to take a back seat and watch the scenery. I love being chauffered.

And it's a good thing... about an hour into our trip, when we were still miles away from my grandpa's, the car suddenly started shaking. Mom tried to pull over, and barely got onto the berm before the steering locked up further and we started drifting back into the lane. Of course, she stopped the van at that point, and there we were, sitting just off the left lane of an interstate and waiting for AAA to send out a tow truck.

My brother went ahead of the van, walking in the berm, to take a look a the front wheels to see what was wrong.... and this is what he saw:

Our van was pigeon-toed, as my mom put it. She and Dad thought it was the tire rod on the driver's side that broke. Something like that anyway.

My grandpa came to get us, and the tow truck arrived soon after. A nice cop had come by and turned on his lights so people wouldn't run into us, since we were very near being still on the road (as you can see in the picture). His lights warned people to get out of the left lane (and attracted a ton of rubberneckers).

God had to have been looking out for us. We were lucky to get as far off the road as we did, and that Mom was driving (not me), and a bunch of other stuff (including that we didn't run into the guardrail or anything instead of managing to pull off).

We did get to my grandpa's, eventually, and had a lovely Easter dinner with the rest of the family. My uncle drove us home last night in my grandpa's van. And we all woke up this morning, safe and sound. Thank the Lord.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

La Resurrección

Amen. And now we're off to visit relatives. :-)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

A reason to get out of bed

I'm doing a landscapes project for digital photography... and while this will not likely be in the final selection of photos, I thought it was beautiful. I took it this morning a little after seven o'clock.
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Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Writing is loverly

I was whistling "Wouldn't it be loverly?" today and got a couple more comments about whistling (both mine and in general). I do wish everyone were able to whistle; it brings such joy to life.

Anyhow. Today I got the latest issue of a newsletter for which I write, and was pleased to see it filled with articles and photographs, many of which were written/photographed by people I know. (And of course, it's nice to see my own work in print. *smile*) I enjoy writing for this particular newsletter because it's a Christian one, with themed issues; the writing I do for this is like writing features for a newspaper, so it's a cross between reporting (telling a true story) and storytelling (framing it and giving the story a moral or a lesson or whatever). I love it.

For one of my articles (I had two short ones) I wrote about a book I'd just finished which happened to dovetail perfectly with the theme of the article. I'm surprised (again) at how coherent an article I managed to write in little time. Nothing like writing one, not thinking about it again for a month, and then seeing it in print (with a byline!) amid several others.

And apparently my articles have a name--my column is "The Lamppost." My friend the editor could not have picked a better one, methinks. I've been obsessed with lampposts ever since first reading (or rather, having Mom read) the Narnia chronicles, I am convinced.

On another pleasant note, Easter break starts in two days. :-)

Red Envelope follow-up

I sent off my red envelope last Tuesday.... and the White House has received it, along with over two million more.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

Midnight musing

I don't really understand why anyone would have an intensely personal blog online... the journal-style ones, in which the author bares his soul for the world to see. What point or purpose could there be to dumping one's least developed thoughts and one's most ethereal dreams into a little box made of HTML? And then clicking the little "publish" button, like one's blog were a valuable autobiographical resource for some famous or controversial person?

I sometimes think that the plethora of personal, journal-like blogs devalues the nature of a blog.

Therefore, I keep most musing between the pages of my real-life, tangible journal, of paper and ink.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Puzzle Toys and Birthday Parties

Ah. The satisfaction of two things well done.

#1: My roommate's father makes cubic puzzle toys that come apart into group of different shapes (like this). The one my roommate had here in our room took me about half a minute to solve--which impressed her--so she brought back another one her dad made. This second puzzle toy was harder, in that it could only be solved one way, whereas the first had several different solutions.

I fiddled with it half of yesterday afternoon, off and on, to no avail. I took it to work with me, and after getting all my actual work done, I fiddled with it for fifteen minutes straight... and solved it!

Then, my friends wanted to try it, so it came apart again. And I couldn't figure out how to solve it again, until I fiddled with it for about ten more minutes here in my room again and managed to put it all back together. A twice-solved puzzle.

(Ever consider how little-used the z is in the English language? That's why pizazz and dazzle and zazzle and puzzle and twizzler are such fun words!)

#2: My roommate's birthday was recently, but due to schedule conflicts (and there were a lot of 'em) we couldn't really celebrate it until last night. So, my apartmentmate and I planned a small party for her, a surprise party, complete with cupcakes and a slideshow of her friends wishing her a happy birthday. She had no idea of it, so the surprise was successful. She had been wanting a surprise party for years, too. :-)