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Aug. 1st, 2012

I'm gonna get so lost!

I have to go to a volunteer orientation meeting tonight - blerch, can't we all just skype in from our couches? - so I looked up the bus instructions on the handy OC Transpo trip planner. It tells me to get off at a stop from where I'll still need to walk 12 minutes to reach my destination. When I clicked on the walking instructions (which are usually pretty helpful), it says...

Walking Information: Take TRANSITWAY and walk to TRANSITWAY, it is the next street. Turn left and walk to TRANSITWAY, it is the next street. Turn left and walk to TRANSIT, it is the next street. Take TRANSIT and walk to ROADWAY, it is the next street. Turn right and walk to WOODROFFE, it is the next street. Turn right and walk to [address], it is on the left (+/- 12 min.).

I'm sure this is one of those situations where it'll all be completely clear once I'm there, right?

Oct. 14th, 2011

Hard to see the forest for the trees

One of the best things about being in London for a long time is the opportunity to really explore my borough. Perched on the very edge of London, it's easy enough to get into the city on the tube, but what I especially like is that it's just as easy to get out of it. Epping Forest is a 6000+ acre wood that just happens to start about 2 miles from my house.

Apr. 24th, 2011

Greetings from Middle Earth

Two days of left-hand side driving with no crashes, roadkill, or panic attacks. (Okay, I confess, one panic attack at Porter's pass with a SHEER DROPOFF just a few centimeters the road. Had to talk myself through that one.) But it's some of the most gorgeous countryside I've ever seen. Also met a "wild" parrot at a car park who, once he discovered I had almonds, practically attacked me for the bag. Pictures coming soon.

I spent last night on the shores of Lake Palmer, listening to the rain fall. Typical camping, right? But woke up to a stunningly gorgeous day, had a couple of very strong flat whites loaded with zucker, and met the van to take me to Edoras. (Well, Mount Sunday to the locals, but Meduseld to us, right?) Wow! I can't describe how amazing it was to be standing there on this craggy outcrop surrounded by the scenery that I recognised so well. The tour guide was quite a character himself - an ex-pastor who sure liked to talk (glad he enjoyed LOTR talk more than god talk) and seemed to be having as much fun as we did. Our group was interesting - an Indian family from Tasmania with a little baby, two Norwegian guys, a Chinese guy from Melbourne, and a girl from the Hague who's working in Auckland now. The family kept to themselves so the rest of us just tramped all over the place, and had some interesting discussions with the Dutch girl and Australian guy who bemoaned how people didn't work hard enough in NZ and Australia and had good lives without working hard and never had to want for anything; the Norwegians and I were going, "Yeah, sure do hate that!"

And then we slaughtered them with our genuine Middle Earth swords! MWUAHAHAHAHA. No, but we did have swords (Narsil and whatever Eowyn's was called) as well as Gimli's axe, so we could have. Instead we just exchanged email addresses for photograph swaps and were terribly civil about everything.

But no, we really did all get along pretty well. Guess that's the thing when you're submerged in geek culture. It really was a lovely day. And it was clear and unseasonably warm and the winds were whipping past me and it was just unbelievable. I can't even imagine how much more thrilling it's going to be when I get to Gondor. (Er, um, Queenstown.)

That's a few days off still. Tomorrow I'm heading to Oamaru via a very winding route that our tour guide recommended, past Fairlie and Lake Tekapo and Pelennor Fields (er, Twizel), where I am sure to shed a tear. Then if I hit Oamaru at the right time, I should be able to see the Little Blue Penguins AND the yellow-eyed penguins. [info]alsha you should be getting a call!

But tonight I broke down and got a real hotel room in Methven, which was probably a good idea because being chauffeured around all day is exhausting. *g* I'll take a much-needed shower and then read a bit. I just started a great new book last night, but after the disappointment of the last one I just finished, I'm cautious of tremendous beginnings because they seem to always fall flat. (Please Emily Carr and Katherine Dunn, I know you are top-selling authors, but please let me rewrite your endings, okay?)

OK, that's enough blather I suppose. I can't wait to get my pictures uploaded, expect picspam soon!!

Apr. 20th, 2011

Quite likely the longest post I've ever written

There is way too much to update, and I don’t know where to start – and as it turns out, I know some of my friends don’t even know what is happening or where I am, since I’ve been so sporadic about updating stuff. So maybe I will do this with numbers. Yes, that’s a good idea.

Jun. 21st, 2010

Monday again

A relaxing weekend in the country -- lounging on a friend's deck in the country, drinking kidbooze strawberry-pineapple vodka and grilling amazingly delicious foods -- although well needed, is doing very, very bad things for my productivity today. *sulks at work*

And I need to work harder -- more money more! -- because the golden kitty has another tumour on her belly. We're going to the vet tomorrow to see what the damage will be. And I will totally pay it, because I am a great big suck.

Aug. 1st, 2009

A mixed bag of an update

It's been ages since my last update -- and really I should go to bed, but after 1/2 of a bottle of prosecco, what better time to update?!

Lots of good things recently... let's see where to start:

-AWZ is off-the-charts brilliant these days. I could gush but Today's episode really says it all! )

-Making plans with [info - personal] takhys for Carnivàle Lune Bleue. (Must reread Geek Love before that!)

-Got a call yesterday from an old friend--she'd moved out to the country, which meant I never saw her, but she just recently moved back into the Glebe. Now we can hopefully be more social! We're going downtown soon to check out the Busking festival.

-re: said Busking festival: I was at the bank a few days ago behind a bunch of mimes. The RBC tellers have enough trouble when I talk to them, god knows how they handled miming!

-The Merlin Big Bang previews look AMAZING! I am so excited about all this!

-We made it through two days with almost no rain--could summer finally be here?

I really should go to bed now ... but it's much more amusing watching my catnip-crazed cat go nuts! *taunts her*

Jan. 6th, 2009

AWZ is totally to blame for this, btw

Holy moley, I'd forgotten what a workout skating is. Muscles that haven't spoken to me in years are screaming now. (Hello, biceps femoris, glad to see you again.)

But I didn't fall once.

Nov. 3rd, 2008

Keeping going

My walks always start out as a crawl. I have to drag myself off the couch and into my shoes, then out the door. Then I have to psych myself up: "I'll just do a short walk today" or "I'll just go to the Parliament gates." But once I get going, I keep going: "I'm at the Parliament gates, I might as well climb the stairs and get to the building itself", then "I've already climbed the steps, I might as well see if there are any cats out today", then "I'm already up here, I might as well walk around the outlook over the river", then "I could go straight home by the road, but taking the canal footpath would be so much nicer..."

Every time I do this, it seems I get some kind of reward for keeping going. Last week it was seeing the strip of snow on just the north side of the trees; yesterday it was turning a corner and stumbling upon a farmer's market. Today it's that the canal, which had been drained of water until it was almost empty, is filling up again. The water's risen now to right under the kiosks. Know what that means? Yep, beavertails and hot chocolate and skating on the canal!

It also means winter's right around the corner, which I'm strangely okay with.

Oct. 20th, 2008

Take a walk with me

Work is still horribly busy -- I can't wait for it to slack off in February! -- and it's leaving me at the end of the day with barely enough brainpower to watch tv. I miss this time last year, when I was embroiled in writing Architects of Memory. Work was just as busy, but I'd slog through each day looking forward to the night when I could put down the words that had to come out. I long for that kind of energy these days. And a story to tell.

But I am keeping myself sane with daily walks. I've done it five days running ... this is a routine! My shortest one is up to Parliament Hill and back -- that's about 4 km round trip. My longest took me across Pont Alexandra to Quebec (I'm estimating 8 km, it took me 1 hour and 45 minutes), and I finally remembered to bring my camera. Unfortunately it's about a week too late for the good autumn colours. Still, I think Ottawa is really pretty. Here's what it looks like in October...