Monday, September 28, 2009

pure ignorance

today, i am exhausted. like 3 lattes and a sugary sweet pastry to try and wake up tired. so tired, in fact, that i couldn't even muster the strength to argue (i mean, discuss) with a coworker today who told me that they do not vote and never will because they think anyone who runs for office is selfish. or their party is selfish.

but honestly, i might not have had the energy to tell this person they were wrong on a number of levels, but i sure do now and man, are they ever wrong!

it irritates me to no end when people paint all 'politicians' with the same brush and write them off as being liars, selfish, arrogant, ignorant, or altogether useless. the problem with that thinking (and there are many) is that while some of them quite possible are, it all comes down to just being an excuse for not getting off your own duff and casting a vote. or getting off your arse and reading a newspaper to figure out which party is which and who stands for what.

and as someone who has participated in the democratic system on a few different levels, i want to smack these people who cast off all those involved in politics in the forehead and tell them that like politicans or not, they still make the rules and still get a vote in parliament/legislature and those are rules that you and i have to live by, whether we like them or not. so you might as well put your ballot in the box and do that small part to participate in our democracy.

and don't even get me started on those who would die (and do) to live in a democracy like ours!!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

a ghost in my nest

i have a ghost. or my house has a ghost. either way, there is an apparition lurking around my living space. and you know what? i really don't mind much. my ghost seems relatively harmless and might even be good company now and again.

i had come home a few times to feel that someone else had been in my space, which was naturally a little disconcerting, but i figured it had something to do with the upheaval of my life and not knowing my own nest just yet. then i had a friend over for dinner and when i realised the tap in the bathroom was running, i just assumed either he or i had left it on after washing our hands.

but then one time, when i was all alone i found the bathroom tap on as high as it could go and as hot as it could go so i knew that even if i had left it on, i would never have had it at full blast such as it was.

and then last night, i was having a chat with my sister on the phone and noticed that my upstairs light was on and i had distinctly remembered turning it off earlier when i was surprised that it was on, so i think my ghost was at it again.

harmless, i am sure, but i hope that it knows that i recognise it is there so it can stop turning things on that i need to run around after!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

all i can muster - another dang list

oh, what a day. it is nearly 1am and i am just finally unwinding. it would not be a bad idea for me to schedule in unwinding time regularly...

but hot damn, am i thrilled with the current weather in calgary! i am not typically one to talk a lot about the weather, but +30 degree forecasts for september 23rd? yes, please!

i feel like i have so much to say and i am doing all that i can to start typing a list of (somewhat) interesting points, because it just seems to be happening rather often around this here blog. but in the interest of me getting up and making it to work by at least 10 tomorrow morning, i present you with... a list.
  • i was interviewed today by a local television network. and they are going to translate it into mandarin, which is sort of neat.
  • i am going to be taking a 2 day course on social impact assessments courtesy of my job, which is fantastic and i am really looking forward to it as it is something that i feel will be most beneficial if i ever decide to return to the world of non-profits or international development
  • my nest is getting nestier by the day. and thanks to my step-dad and brother, all my furniture has been brought up the stairs and into my space without any issues. i am also having 2 more pieces of furniture delivered tomorrow (which is my lucky lady deal of free delivery) and then the painting decisions will begin
  • still no run in's with my next door neighbour so no opportunity to drop something to see if he picks it up (as i am sure you were all eagerly awaiting that update)
  • grey's anatomy starts this week and although this isn't exactly my own update, you will soon stop having to read my musings on whether or not george dies (i am sure he dies) and whether or not izzy is going to live (she will, but her condition and quality of life will be questionable)
  • i made my first 2 purchases from the other day and am eagerly awaiting their arrival in the mail. i have found some pretty adorable stuff and some pretty awesome blogs from my time spent perusing etsy's delights and will be sharing them shortly
  • i found out that stephen lewis is going to be the keynote speaker at an event here in november and i will do anything that i can to get myself in there, even if it means volunteering as the bathroom attendant. and to boot, jian ghomeshi will be the master of cermonies and i am pretty sure he would love me if he met me.
  • i just realised that it is only tuesday (and not wednesday like i thought for most of today), which is great because i was really beginning to feel behind on the week there for awhile
and now that i have finished my well-deserved beer this evening, i am going to head to bed. and hopefully not dream about all that has to be done this week (repaint the exterior of a 3 story building, coordinate 80 volunteers, write and distribute meeting notes, kick someone out of a committee that is technically open to anyone, watch grey's anatomy, buy an extension cord so my tv can be plugged in to watch grey's anatomy, put together 2 more chairs, clean and iron and fold and sweep and dust and tidy and organise, etc - or as they say in kenya, ee tee cee, ee tee cee)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

proudly supporting my little (big) bro

my little bro is going to go to tanzania at the end of this school year on a grade 12 trip and part of his responsibility before he leaves is to do some socially responsible activities in his own community. so he and my step dad have decided to do the AIDS walk this year here in calgary.

if you would like to support a 17 year old to get more involved in his community (and he is a pretty cool 17 year old, if my opinion counts), support the awareness raising efforts of organisations on HIV/AIDS, support organisations that assist those living with AIDS, or if you just want to donate money to a worthwhile cause, take a look here!

Friday, September 18, 2009

modesty withheld

you know all my bitching and complaining that international development doesn't work? well, maybe it does.* or maybe the projects that i worked on actually did make a difference to someone. here is why:
  • the unhcr made a landmark decision to grant refugee status to victims of trafficking based on the fact that they cannot return home because they were trafficked (and i was one of the people who provided them with assistance). it only took 3 years...
  • the first charges of human trafficking were laid in western canada last week (on a case that i am familiar with and that is about all i can say about that)
  • my company is winning an award for their involvement in a local non-profit organisation, partly because of the work i have put in to plan this year's united way campaign (that kicks off next week, so get your wallets out people)

* but it doesn't on the grand scheme, i am just having a moment here

Thursday, September 17, 2009

a mid autumn night's update

i have wanted to post all week, but somehow life kept getting in the way. i promise a post that does not include bullet points will be forthcoming.

here are things that are new since we last spoke:
  • i have put together more furniture and loved the problem solving of it
  • i rid myself of a boyfriend that i had managed to acquire these past few months
  • during and after the Break Up, i felt absolutely ok about it all. my life did not crumble. my spirit did not take a hit. i was a little disappointed so i took a nap.
  • then i scheduled 3 dates for this week. because i can. 2 down, 1 to go.
  • i went to a luncheon where $60,000 was raised to open a shelter for victims of human trafficking (but none of that was my money as i didn't like their world vision-y style of fundraising)
  • i made a delicious dinner for my first dinner guest at the nest - salmon with caramelised leeks was the centrepiece and i invented a berry crumble for dessert
  • my company is a major sponsor of the honen's piano competition and i had the pleasure of spending over an hour today listening to a previous winner play a grand piano at my office (and i love the design of this year's programme so go over and take a look)
  • i was given tickets to tonight's flames game, but couldn't find anyone i wanted to spend a few hours with who wasn't already busy so i gave them away to a summer student who then asked me if i wanted to go with him. the guy's got guts!
  • one of my closest friends invited me to her wedding. it will be in england. in december. i hope i can wear a hat!
  • i obtained a lucky lady deal from the shop where i bought my bookshelves and i will now have them delivered for free. yay for not having to find someone to carry them up the stairs to my front door!
  • speaking of that front door. it happens to be right beside the front door of a rather dapper young gentleman. i know nothing about him, but my friend did suggest that i look at his mail and see if i can find out his name and then i could google him. because that is totally not crazy at all!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

shiny samsung

for the first time in my life, i own a tv. a nice tv. a tv that was on sale, which makes it even a better tv, as far as i am concerned.

and what have i watched so far? the ctv news, a sunday in kigali (in french. do i speak french? no, but i read the book and pieced things together between the images, the bits of french i can read, and captions), a cbc show where mp peter mckay trains with the canadian military for a few days, and the last epidsode of grey's anatomy from last season.

did izzy die? did george die? do meredith and mcdreamy ever get married? will bailey and her husband really get a divorce?

but more importantly, do you think that izzy or george died???

what the future holds

(september 5, 2009)

i recently went to see a psychic. or maybe she calls herself a medium. or a spiritual counsellor. but whatever she calls herself, it was rather interesting...

a brief synopsis of what she suspects is in my future:
  • i will be married in a few years and i am walking towards this, even if it doesn’t feel like it at the moment
  • i will have two job opportunities that are incredibly interesting and great fits for me fall into my lap in about 8 months’ time
  • these jobs will take me to the eastern part of canada, either toronto or ottawa and will be in the area of law, lobbying, politics, or government
  • i will eventually do a phd, but not until sometime in my 30’s and not until after i finish the internal debate between a phd or going to law school
  • my anxiety will also even itself out in my mid 30’s and this will have a lot to do with the person i marry and how steady and dependable he apparently will be
  • my new nest will be tonnes of fun for me and my door will constantly revolve with all the entertaining i will do, but ultimately, i will love the silence of living alone
  • my job right now pays the bills and that is about all, which is fine and necessary for this stage in my life
  • no matter what job i do, i will stand in front of people and deliver information and presentations, eventually leading to a career as a professor and a consultant for international organisations
  • i have been in transition for over a year and i am preparing for the next big change, even though i do not realise it
it was a very positive experience to listen to someone else tell me everything will be ok and even when things do not make sense or feel as though they are on the right path, they are. i am. and it was pretty cool to hear someone else’s perspective on your own life, recent changes, and what is to come. i have no idea how she manages to ‘see’ these things or how i feel about the idea that some things are meant to be or are predetermined, but it was an interesting exercise for me.
it looks like everything is coming up roses. or whatever that saying is!

Friday, September 11, 2009

i wish mr lamontagne would write a song for me

winter birds
it's the widow now that owns that angry plow,
the spartan mule and the crippled cow
the fallow field that will yield no more,
as the fox lay sleeping beneath her kitchen floor

the stream can't contain such the withering rain,
and from the pasture the fence it is leaning away
the clouds crack and growl
like some great cat on the prowl
crying out, "i am, i am" over and over again

the days grow short
as the nights grow long
the kettle sings its tortured song
as many petalled kiss i place upon her brow,
oh, my lady, lady i am loving you now

the winter birds have come back again,
here the sprightly chickadee
gone now is the willow wren
in passing greet each other as if old, old friends
and to the voiceless trees
it is their own they will lend

the days grow short
as the nights grow long
the kettle sings its tortured song
as many petalled kiss i place upon her brow,
oh, my lady, lady i am loving you now

and though all these things will change,
the memories will remain
as green to gold, and gold to brown
the leaves will fall to feed the ground
and in their falling, make no sound

oh my lady,
lady i am loving you now

i've gathered all my money and i'm goin' to town,
to buy my lady a long and flowing gown
'cause come tomorrow morning
we're off to the county fair
i'll find a yellow flower
and i will lace it in her hair

Thursday, September 10, 2009

small battles win the war

if you are interested in learning about human trafficking in canada, check out the story about today's historic charges laid against two in edmonton. the first ever in western canada.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009

autumn is here

and how do i know?
  • blustery winds
  • my skin is drying out
  • my congestion is getting worse
  • the morning air is crisp
  • there are taber corn signs everywhere
  • i need to carry a hoodie or a jacket with me when i go out

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

poor dieter

first, back on august long weekend, someone in sicamose with much too much anger inside of them decided it would be a great idea in the middle of a sweltering afternoon outside of a grocery store to put their lit cigarette out on dieter's hood. not the metal part of the hood, but the plastic bit where the windshield wipers come out, leaving a small burn hole and their nasty cigarette butt.

then, when i was nearly back in town after a weekend trip to edmonton, a rock caught the corner of dieter's windshield, leaving a small crack that i quickly had repaired by the lovely people at speedy auto glass. they warned me that in about 10% of cases, the crack will spread after they repair it, essentially making a small problem worse and it was just dieter's luck that this is precisely what happened to him. so now there is a crack that sweeps around to the edge of the windshield, but at least it is outside of my line of vision when i drive.

and then (and then!) last night after driving back from a weekend at the cabin (in a dieter that has never been dirtier thanks to a rain shower and extremely dusty roads), i noticed that someone has taken a key to his passenger side! i am not sure exactly how you repair a key scratch, of if you can (any ideas or suggestions?!), but what is wrong with people who would do that to someone else's property? that is all i can think of. and, of course, how i feel badly for not taking proper care of dieter, although i suppose there isn't much that i could have done and i have been driving him around town a lot lately to carry out my nesting.

Friday, September 04, 2009

madly, deeply in love

i have fallen madly and deeply in love with my new nest. you might think that this is an impossibility (to be so in love with an inanimate object), but you would be wrong and here are the reasons why:
  • i have a dishwasher! this probably does not come as a surprise to anyone in north america, but in any of the places i have ever lived on my own i have never had a dishwasher. and that is a lot of dishes to do by hand. here, i get excited when i have used up enough dishes to necessitate a wash (and it doesn't happen with only little ol me here)
  • living by myself is amazing and i had forgotten how wonderful it really is. i can sleep with my door wide open, wander around in the nude looking for my dental floss, listen to music or talk on the phone as loudly as i like, and when i want it, the silence is just grand.
  • i can see a grocery store, a liquor store, and 2 starbucks from my front door. really.
  • although incredibly expensive, buying furniture for my nest is fun.
  • having people over for meals is one of my favourite things. especially when they cook everything, bring it all over, defrost crave cupcakes for the occassion, drag along picnic blankets to sit on, and give me housewarming gifts that have my name written all over them. my friends are great.
  • my fam helped me move my stuff in, wash all my new dishes, and christen my home by cheers-ing with ice-cold beer. my family is awesome.
  • my to do list has grow exponentially. i love lists. and i love checking things off to do lists.
  • baths on sunday mornings because you don't have a shower curtain yet are fine, just fine.
  • i now live 5km away from my office. and my own home office is pretty swell too.
  • spending a whack load of money on fine, german flatware is sort of like a big 'eat this!' to the universe. i love a substantial spoon. and i love that i can afford to buy own.