Tuesday, December 14, 2010


I try to make it a habit to bring my own cloth bags when shopping. However, there are times I forget or I am only purchasing an item or two and don't really need a bag either way. In those instances, I tell the cashier right away that no bag is needed...but some of them are pretty quick on the draw and have one all ready to go by then. I have to say, it really bugs me when I grab my stuff to go and they take the bag they were going to give me and throw it in the trash. Why not just reuse it on the next customer? It kind of makes my intended good deed a bad one and leaves me feeling guilty that I didn't just take the damn bag and recycle it myself...

Monday, December 13, 2010

Lucky Day

It may be silly, but I just felt the need to put this out to the universe and say thank you...

In The Artist's Way, Julia Cameron writes about synchronicity - which she explains as things that randomly pop up in our lives when we are thinking about them. I had two such instances today...The first occurred when I was shopping with my mother and found facial moisturizers I'm running out of and have been contemplating ordering online, although they are somewhat pricey and I couldn't really justify buying them at the moment. Lo and behold, when I walked into Winner's, there they were on the shelf (I've never seen them in Newfoundland) for almost half the price I am used to paying for them. A very little thing, but I was thankful and happy nonetheless.

The second instance was when I (stupidly) locked myself out of my apartment this evening. I was thinking of the extra key my landlady gave me and wishing she was home so that I could see if there was another key floating around (I never thought I would be so lucky, but it doesn't hurt to check). It so happened that she was away, but her daughter was home so I went upstairs to look up a locksmith. Shortly after I called him (and was told it would cost me $60), she pulled into the driveway. I explained what had happened and she went over to her friend's house to see if they might have an extra key (they live on the same street and were taking care of the house for her after she bought it and before she moved in). Her friend was also out, but her husband handed us a ring of keys and said that one of them might be for the apartment, he wasn't sure. We walked back over to my place and, as luck might have it, the first one she tried got me in. I said a little prayer of gratitude for whoever/whatever was looking out for me and called the locksmith as soon as I got in. Unfortunately, he had arrived in the driveway by that time and was none to happy about it. I was sincerely apologetic, but he hung up on me anyway.

I suppose while I'm at it, there is a third thing that recently struck me as strange...one day last week, an old professor of mine from my MUN days popped into my head - I can't remember why. Oddly enough, on Friday night's performance of Messiah, I looked over to my left at the audience at one point and guess who was sitting there in the second row? I'm wondering if there is some significance to that and if perhaps he (or what he represents) is somehow a part of the answer to the puzzle of my life I've been trying to put together in terms of my career path and getting employed again. It's something to think about, anyway...

Although there are often weird coincidences that mean nothing on the surface, as one friend said to me a while back, "The signs of life are always there for us if we remember to look for them." It really makes you wonder sometimes...

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Thursday Afternoon Update

OK, so I've been yo-yo-ing a bit with the whole weight loss thing, but I think things are on the decrease again. I reached a new low today - YAY! I got to pre-boyfriend-number-two weight a while ago and went back up a few pounds, but I have broken through the threshold and am now below that. In 8.2 pounds I will be at pre-boyfriend-number-one (yes, there have only been two long terms...and they ate up this decade for me). This excites me almost as much as the fact that there is a new bra store in town (which I have yet to check out). It is about damn time St. John's!!! AH, bliss....I was really wondering what the hell I was going to do when I needed to go shopping for unmentionables and contemplating the shipping costs from my favourite lingerie shop in Kelowna was not pretty...

Alas, I digress...

My mother, God bless her, has been pressuring me to make plans for the holidays. It will be my first Christmas on the island since 2004 and my first single one since I was 20. What makes it weird for me, though, is that my brother will be staying in town with his girlfriend and my parents will be out around the bay...and I have to decide where to be. And for some reason, having to make that decision triggers a very emotional response in me. The thought has crossed my mind to just stay at my apartment solo and see them all at some other point (other than Christmas Day) throughout the holidays, but I can't seem to bring myself to commit to any plan of action yet and I don't see why she insists on hounding me to figure it out.

I have been applying myself to figuring out what it is I want to do with my life in terms of career and so far every thought engenders several more but nothing is really screaming at me, "THIS IS YOUR PATH!!!" How disappointing is that???

After quite a few nasty bumps in the road in a close friendship over the past few months, I am contemplating cutting ties. This is never an easy thing to do and I am certainly not a fan, but sometimes self-protection trumps all. I can't say that I particularly enjoy feeling like someone else's personal punching bag at the moment or that I am being continually judged by someone I considered "friend." You know how the saying goes..."With friends like that..." And, well, when it starts to feel like a relationship with a controlling boyfriend? No, thank you. I wouldn't tolerate that from a boyfriend and so I see no reason why I should cater to it with a friend.

Oh, and that great guy I thought I had met? Turns out he may not be so great after all. Go figure. After a couple of dates and a whole lot of online conversation - in all of which we seemed to totally click and enjoy each other's personalities immensely (read: battle of wits, smile and laughter explosion, complemented with what appeared to be sparkly, googly-eyed adoration coming from him) - I am starting to get the vibe that perhaps he is a bit of a player. Which, I suppose, would account for the incredible acting skills if all that crap wasn't genuine. The boy is good, I'll give him that...but if he thinks I'm going to be one of those girls who is content to hang around on the back burner and soak up any pittance of attention she is paid, he's got a lot to learn. So, currently I'm keeping my eyes and my options open and waiting to see what happens (damn my hopeful optimistic side for choosing to make an appearance in this arena, but I really do like this one and can't help but hope that he IS being genuine and ISN'T trying to play me), but seriously starting to think putting a freeze on exploring romantic interests may be in order again soon. I really wonder what this whole thing is like from the male perspective, given that our brains operate so differently...

Monday, December 6, 2010

Getting Back Up

If you have been following this blog at all, you already know that it has been a rather rough year for me so far. Granted, everyone has their ups and downs, but I sort of feel like I've been mostly down and often kicked over the past 12 months. I am happy to say that I am now entering a period of renewed strength, determination, action, and optimism. It feels good. It is still a bumpy road and there are still obstacles in my path and decisions that are screaming at me to be made, but I am resilient - a fighter and a survivor, despite being such a whiner sometimes. Let's face it...there are a lot worse things I could have gone through than what I have. However, that is cold comfort when you are the person who is feeling lost and whose life is in utter upheaval.

Progress to date: I am continuing to follow The Artist's Way program, I have booked myself an appointment with a career counsellor, I am performing this weekend in the PCNSO/NSO's Messiah, I am volunteering on the theatre scene and keeping my eyes and ears open for opportunities to get back onstage. I have gotten some calls to sub (although not as many as I would like) and I am actively collecting and organizing writing ideas. I have also lost another few pounds, which feels really good.

In terms of the love life scene, I have processed and healed from the shock I wrote of in my last post. I have also been conversing with a couple of smart and intriguing men online (one of whom I have met and am attracted to on numerous levels - I am keeping my fingers crossed that there will be a chance to explore the possibilities further - as in date and get to know each other better - but I am in no rush to enter into another full blown relationship at this point). I am also kind of interested in finding out more about an acquaintance who has caught my attention.

I found it rather helpful to spend time with a friend of a friend recently who reminded me that being single and 30 does not mean that life is over. It's amazing how you can be acquainted with someone for years and never realize how much you have in common...some talking over wine remedied that situation this weekend and it was incredibly therapeutic (seriously - what would we ever do without our girlfriends?). It also made me realize that I want to savour this opportunity I have created to be a single lady again a little more than I have been (with the exception of all the fun I had this summer - that part was great). It may be my last chance, after all, and I remember a part of me mourning the loss of my single life and living vicariously through others while I was in long term relationships. Still, I was rather surprised at myself when I looked at her life - complete with husband, kids, and home - which I thought I wanted before and which I think I might still like someday, and realize that I don't actually want it right now. It's refreshing and relieving to know that. That's a whole lot of pressure lifted, right there...

And so I leave you with:

(Ok, so the whole song doesn't fit, but the whole not killing you but making you stronger bit works!)

Monday, November 22, 2010

The Tangled Webs We See

This has been a very weird month for me so far. One man I dated suddenly updated his facebook status to say that he is in a relationship after I had not talked to him in a few days, which left me wondering...hmmm...when did that occur? Does he work really fast or was he seeing her while he was seeing me? Does she know he still checks his online dating account? Or that he even has one?

It gets better. The man I spent six years of my life with and left close to nine months ago suddenly turned up married. Gotta love facebook. That news temporarily ripped a hole through my chest with heart-wrenching sobs and anger and bitterness beyond belief. It's not that I care that he's moved on or that he's not with me. That's not what I was grieving over. I know I made the right decision. I know we both deserve to be happy with other people (even though part of me thinks I deserve it more at this point). I know when the time is right I will find my Prince Charming or whatever incarnation he shows up as...

What bothers me is the realization that I stayed for so long and put so much effort into a relationship that was going nowhere and that his new wife has been with him for less than a year (possibly less than 6 months)...that I was led to believe in an eventual marriage that never materialized (which is probably the best thing that ever happened to me, next to the proposal from another ex that I turned down years ago). What bothers me is that I now wonder if SHE was the reason for all the weirdness with his cellphone during the last year we were together. Perhaps they have known each other longer than meets the eye. And the icing on the cake? She has a child. A child...which he said he didn't want and which was part of the reason for our split. A child who I also taught at one point. Oh, the irony. And even better? Comments under their wedding photo show me that he has told her some of the same lies he told me about his previous life. This woman has no idea how many skeletons will be falling on her head everytime she opens the closet.

As I have said before, my ex was not evil incarnate. There were a lot of good points there, as well - on the surface, anyway. Otherwise, I obviously would not have stayed as long as I did. As a matter of fact, just last week I texted him (one of the rare non-business-only exchanges we have had since I left) to thank him for the good things he did for me during our relationship. I can't explain why...I just felt he needed to know that, despite everything, those things were really appreciated (it probably had something to do with the news that another ex of mine had died recently - which is a whole other thing to experience mentally and emotionally). A few days later he messaged me on facebook to tell me my new profile picture was nice, which I thought was odd.

I should probably explain that, while the ex and I did leave each other on our friends lists, we did limit the information that was available to each other. And I do not by any means check in on him regularly. In fact, it was just a fluke that I discovered any of this at all. I was bored and scrolling through status updates and a weird looking profile picture caught my eye, so I went back to see what it was that I could not pick sense out of upon first glance. It was then I realized it was of lips kissing a hand...and whose lips they were and what was on the hand. Of course, being human, I then had to check it out. And now I'm thinking that it is definitely time to delete him from my friends list. I do not need to be seeing these things and torturing myself with thoughts about things that don't even matter anymore.

I have to admit, though, it is rather tempting to let the scorned woman in me give the new bride a little friendly advice. Likewise with the first incident I described...wouldn't I like to know if my boyfriend were still scouring the online arena for potential dates and/or booty calls? But it is not my business, nor my call to make. These things have to be found out on their own or not at all without my input or interference. It feels like a little bit of a betrayal to watch these women walking into these situations and having inside information on the men in their lives...but they are not my friends. I do not know them. And therefore it is definitely not my place to involve myself in their relationships and create drama for them by shedding some light on what is most likely unbeknownst to them at this point. But I do find myself playing devil's advocate and arguing opposing sides of the moral dilemma...no doubt partially due to the anger I feel at having been somewhat blind myself for a time.

There are valuable lessons to be learned here, folks. Not least of which is that time is too precious to waste with someone when you know something isn't right. It also drives home the point that words are cheap and actions speak volumes...and that things usually have a way of coming out in the wash. I just hope neither of the ladies now with these men gets burned too badly.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tuesday Night Funny

A friend of mine posted this on facebook and I just had to steal it and repost it here because it made me laugh so much. I hope it does the same for you :)

...for the record, I actually like Sean Paul as well :)

Thought For Today

Friday, November 12, 2010

No In-Between

Just a quick update/rant regarding the online dating scene...I seem to be attracting 20 year olds, 50 year olds, those reeking of desperation or outright looking for booty only and anyone who can't formulate a coherent/correct sentence....sigh. Woe, oh woe, is me. Where are all the intelligent, decent looking men with a sense of humour? They are certainly not knocking on my door in the real world! I mean I'm not looking for Einstein (I'm not sure if that's the best example, but you get the drift), nor am I seeking anyone who is as muscle bound as Arnold was in his prime or as chiseled as an underwear model or as hot as Brad Pitt or Antonio Banderas were in their heyday. All I want is someone who can carry a conversation, communicate with me on my level, finds some of the same things funny and entertaining, and who happens to be attractive in my eyes (well that's the base model that would at least give me something to work with...of course there is some room for fine-tuning in that list). Is that really too much to ask????? I mean, I know I said I was content doing my own thing for now - and I am, for the most part - but some days it gets damned lonely and it would be great to have someone of the opposite sex (as in a non-platonic potential romantic interest) to spend time with once in awhile.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

12 Reasons Living Solo Rocks

In random order:

1. You can prance around naked or in your undies whenever you want and for as long as you want without being questioned.

2. Your mess is your own.

3. When you clean up, it stays that way unless you mess it up.

4. There are no disagreements over bathroom time or storage space.

5. Things stay where you put them instead of magically disappearing and reappearing elsewhere.

6. There is no need to consider anyone else's preferences at meal time - make whatever you like and eat it whenever and wherever you like.

7. There are no clashes in taste or opinion when decorating your space.

8. You can sing as much and as loud as you'd like and dance around like a crazy lady with no one the wiser.

9. You can workout without negotiating for the space.

10. There are no annoying video game noises in the background at any time unless you want them to be.

11. The remote control, phone and computer are under your sole control.

12. You can get up and go to bed whenever you want without worrying about or being bothered by someone else.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Lest We Forget

I always find it hard to wrap my head around Remembrance Day and searching for the right words to say. There is so much that can be said, needs to be said, and should be said...but as a picture is supposedly worth a thousand words, sometimes a song can convey the right feeling, message, and tone with much more poignancy than that same thousand words.

The Trews: Highway Of Heroes

The day I shipped out,
They numbered a dozen.
Upon my return,
Were a hundred or so.
From the coast and the prairies,
I bet they keep coming.
But add one more name from Ontario.

Carry me home down The Highway of Heroes.
People above with their flags flying low.
Carry me softly, down The Highway of Heroes.
True Patriot Love,
There was never more.

I served with distinction,
No visions of glory.
I served without question,
Or personal gain.
Seek no justification,
Its not part of my story.
No comfort to the ones who remain.

Carry me home down The Highway of Heroes.
People above with their flags flying low.
Carry me softly, down The Highway of Heroes.
True Patriot Love,
There was never more.

I took up my vocation,
I was called by my nation.
Without hesitation,
My answer I gave.
Now I am not wondering,
Bout the things that I might have been.
I'm no consolation,
To the forgotten brave.

Carry me home down The Highway of Heroes.
People above with their flags flying low.
Carry me softly, down The Highway of Heroes.
True Patriot Love,
There was never more.

Carry me home down The Highway of Heroes.
People above with their heads held low.
Carry me softly, down The Highway of Heroes.
True Patriot Love,
There was never more...

Tending the Soul

So our jaunt to Boxfit was put off from Monday night to last night, but was still good times. My friend and I really enjoyed Boxer-cise and I don't know about her, but I'm certainly feeling it today. We are considering going again, but hoping it will be less crowded next time (it's new right now so the novelty is still there and everyone wants to try it, much like us). We've also been going to Zumba classes along with a third friend on a fairly regular basis and I've been walking and doing yoga whenever the mood strikes as well. Hopefully the results will be noticeable soon...like before my dress is ready for choir, let's say? Did I mention how depressing it was to get measured for that? Yikes! I swear I have curves and a figure (albeit not exactly 36-24-36 or whatever those divine measurements are supposed to be), but according to her measuring tape I'm pretty much a tree trunk. Nice.

I have re-started The Artist's Way by Julia Cameron (I have the book), which I initially tried in BC and got halfway through before falling off the bandwagon. So far it seems to be helping me feel better, if nothing else. I have an artist date (rough translation: 2 hour block of uninterrupted alone time doing something fun - preferably something my inner child would like/appreciate) with myself tomorrow night. My "inner artist child" and I are going to a movie. It will be the first time I've gone to a movie solo since I was about 16 and dying of boredom one weekend. Anyway...should be an interesting experience. I'm sure there are people who do it all the time, but for me movie going has always been a social thing to do - well, accompanied by at least one friend or the current boyfriend at the time. Last week myself and I went for a walk in Bowring Park and took lots of pictures of the pretty fall colours and leaves everywhere for our artist date. It was great, on more than one count. I needed a reminder of how enthralled I can become with my surroundings and how getting out in nature, breathing fresh air and appreciating beauty can somehow make everything seem better. The chapter I just read in The Artist's Way actually talks about paying attention to the little details in the here and now and I must say, it is really powerful sometimes to just do that one simple thing.

I've also been finding practicing songs for choir to be quite therapeutic and good for my soul. My emotional and spiritual well being has been positively affected by all of these practices (and of course journalling, which I've been doing for years)and I hope I can remember to keep them up. Now...if I could only figure out the rest of my life. The method behind the madness was that if I could take better care of myself and tend to my spirit perhaps my thinking and emotions would become more clear and I would accomplish more and be more productive in everyday life (thereby quelling the feelings of uselessness and guilt that come with not having a regular job)...that perhaps that neon sign I was praying to drop from the heavens would actually materialize in my brain instead.

While there have been no glowing lights to date, the fact that I AM feeling better is leaving me better able to cope with stress and keep depression a little more at bay, so I guess that is progress, at least...

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Sunday Night Ramblings

So I'm sitting here with a glass of port and I'm thinking I should probably be in bed. One of the things about not having a regular job that I'm finding hard to cope with (aside from the obvious lack of income and resultant stress) is the absence of routine and trying to get in and out of bed at decent hours. Being unemployed most definitely takes a toll on your self-confidence and your self-worth. I keep praying for a neon sign to fall from the sky and hit me in the head, telling me what to do and which way to go to get to where I want to be. So far, no such luck. It just doesn't seem to want to materialize.

In a sense, I have all the time in the world and don't know what to do with it most days. I try to keep busy and be as productive as I can muster (depending on how depressed I am about not having a regular job or not quite knowing what it is that I want to do or how to go about doing it - some days are better than others). I try and stay active and get out of the apartment for some fresh air daily but that doesn't always happen either. I told myself I would use this time to figure everything out and to write in the meantime. It turns out that has been easier said than done. I keep taking baby steps but I feel like I am churning my wheels and getting nowhere (wow that was a mixed metaphor...or was it even a metaphor? In any event, how can you take steps if you are using wheels?). Sigh.

In other news, there is no one who has sparked my interest in the online dating arena of late. I do find it interesting, however, that the one person I am intrigued by these days has recently shown up there. It's tricky though. I don't have a picture posted on the dating site due to working in the public sector (let's face it - teachers have to be uber careful about that sort of thing - although I've noticed some have said screw it and thrown caution to the wind...perhaps it's more relaxed down here than it was in BC?) but he does. So I have the advantage of knowing who he is on there. Offline, I see him weekly in rehearsals but don't really have the opportunity to approach him - or a valid excuse to do so. And in my defense, it's not exactly the most comfortable thing in the world to start a conversation with someone you've never before spoken to and happen to be interested in in front of an audience of people who possibly DO know him. (I think the port is starting to take effect...is it just me or is my writing sounding rather convoluted right now? I'm seriously a lightweight (and mostly seldom) drinker). A male friend suggested I should send him an online message and get to know him that way without disclosing my identity unless he asked, but that seems creepy/deceitful to me...and potentially very awkward and embarrassing - what if the interest factor wasn't reciprocated and then I had to continue to see him every week?

Anyway...let's backtrack a bit to the potential interest, himself. I say potential because I don't really know anything about him except that he is super talented, seems quite intelligent, has a great smile, and I want to get to know him better. And then there is the part of me that thinks, "Seriously? Why bother? You are just getting to the place where you're totally comfortable being solo. Embrace it. Enjoy it. Don't mess with it. Mr. Right will pop out of the woodwork and find you when the time is right." Yet, I can't help wondering...does he wonder about me too?

I also find it interesting that my inbox has developed an empty echo lately. For awhile there I was having a hard time keeping up with the correspondence. Now it's as if the universe has intervened and decided that I am supposed to just be alone right now and figure everything else out. To just continue focusing on myself and being patient for the romantic aspect to come along whenever it will. It's odd.

In any event, I'm going to try boxing tomorrow with a friend. That should be entertaining and stress-relieving. Perhaps it will help vent some of these muddled thought processes and provide some clarity while releasing endorphins. Toodles for now!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Lessons Learned The Hard Way

Well I was doing great there for a while. I was putting the focus back on me, where it belongs...my life, my ambitions, my dreams and desires, and feeling quite good about my progress...However, I got sidetracked and new developments have caused some bitterness to seep in tonight. I'm hoping it won't last too long. In the meantime, I'm very tempted to just say the hell with it and stay single forever...or perhaps start batting for the other team...? Nah. Although it would mean I wouldn't have to ever look at the opposite sex as potential mates again. Which could be a good thing since there seem to be very few (if any?) crossing my path who would be worthy of my consideration.

I recently made the mistake of letting my judgment become clouded and being a dumb girl who got blinded by some guy selling her a line. Or was it deluded herself because she wanted to see things that weren't there? Either way...mistake. And so now I'm finding out things that are bothering me about someone who isn't even worth my time and energy. And it stings. So I ask you - why, oh why, do we torture ourselves with thoughts about people and things that shouldn't matter? Why do we let ourselves get sucked into caring about people and things that are simply not worth the effort? How come it's not so easy to just flip a switch, turn it off, and make it go away? I really hope this time I will learn (why do I feel like I'm repeating myself?). My eyes are certainly open right now. Let's hope they stay that way!

...and oddly enough, as I am writing this and stewing in discomfort and negativity, I am receiving support via text from the most unlikely source - an old flame who was once that jerk who misled me but has somehow over the years turned into an odd sort of (platonic!) friend. How's that for irony? (Although I'm pretty sure I still have to be on my guard and careful of ulterior motives where that one is concerned - just in case - it's still nice to have someone cheer you up when you are feeling defeated and need it most).

So anyway, it's back to the drawing board and re-clearing my head to see what I can figure out and get sorted for the betterment of myself and my life - sans non-platonic males for the time being. I did actually go one step further and gave another platonic male friend (and by the way, one of the guys I dated over the past weeks told me I've probably scared off numerous romantic interests simply due to the fact that I have guy friends - what's up with that? Perhaps some further exploration to come on that issue...) permission to kick me in the head if he sees me being stupid over some creep again...to which he responded that he had tried to give me several mental kicks this time but they didn't work. Sigh. I never claimed that I wasn't stubborn sometimes...but I did humbly submit that I am in a different frame of mind now and promised to pay more heed if further kicks were to come.

Some quick updates I'm not sure if I've mentioned: Work - (SIGH) still in the air and undecided as to which path to take. Theatre - so far, harder to break into than I thought down here. Choir - in like Flynn and lovin it :). Living solo - the bomb.

I have been reading a most interesting book lately, too, which I have been meaning to blog about. I think it should be required reading for all women. Yep, definitely gotta write about that soon...

Monday, October 18, 2010

In More Ways Than One...

The Ex-Factor

I'm not sure about everyone else, but I have found that I have put on weight over the course of my long term relationships. The first time, it was because I was miserable and using emotional eating as a coping strategy without realizing (never a good idea). I gained somewhere around 30 pounds over a 2-3 year period. Not good. The last time, my weight tended to fluctuate 20 pounds or so...I'd lose them and then I'd gain them back...then I'd lose them and gain them back...you get the picture.

When I moved home, I was close to being back to my heaviest weight after months of misery followed by a month or so of eating takeout while packing boxes to ship across the country. Again - I don't recommend that as a wise course of action, but sometimes it is necessary to do what needs to be done without losing your mind.

I am by no means fanatical about my weight, but I do try to stay healthy and in decent shape. As my mother says, "everything in moderation." I walk, I do yoga, I hike (none of which is done on stringently, but all of which occurs fairly frequently) and I attempt to eat healthy during the week so that the weekend splurges are not quite so guilt-ridden. And on that note, I am happy to report that I am now down to pre-last-boyfriend weight (on the button). And in another 10 pounds I will be down to pre-first-boyfriend weight...which I haven't been since I was 19-20ish. Now THAT is exciting :)

I also like to think of it as being symbolic...you know...like somehow the weight is connected to the emotional upheaval and baggage accumulated over the course of relationships that didn't work out and so losing it, in turn, equates to lightening the load on my mind and my shoulders and in my heart. I find it is therapeutic to look at it that way...as if I am working my way back to a sort of emotionally healthy tabula rasa state (in terms of healing old scars and banishing any bitterness/cynicism that may be lurking in parts unknown) for the right person to get a fair shot while maintaining all the lessons learned and wisdom garnered from the past...As someone said to me a few months ago, "We all have baggage. It's just a matter of learning to check it when you get on board the next flight and not dump it in the lap of the person sitting next to you." Wise words, indeed...

Work Woes

OK. So I'm getting very stressed and frustrated because I am currently unemployed. I'm a teacher...and unfortunately unemployed teachers are a dime a dozen in St. John's. I figured I'd get my feet wet subbing and work my way into the system...but that's not happening. Things work differently here. Elsewhere I've lived and worked (sometimes subbing and sometimes in my own classroom under yearly term contracts), I've applied to the district, gotten on the sub list, and been guaranteed at least SOME time subbing under the rotational system (minus when I first came home and was subbing in rural NL...but I still managed to get decent classroom time out of that) and a fair crack at any available teaching positions (naturally, I was still behind anyone with more seniority or higher qualifications in terms of job postings). When I applied to the sub list in this district I was informed through the grapevine that the expectation here is that you also hand deliver your resume to any and all schools you wish to sub at and pick a handful to volunteer at for a few hours a week...all in the HOPE of getting a call to sub. So I did that (although I have to say I see a number of faults with that system...which is also NOT rotational and based solely on who you know and your ability to get into their good books as far as I can tell). I got dressed up, plastered a confident smile on my face and braved the weather (of course, it was windy and raining every time I went out to deliver resumes), I picked a couple of schools and have been going there and volunteering my services in and out of the classroom to whoever wants to make use of me - and so far? Nothing. Nada. Pas du tout!

And it's getting old. I am not a fan of having this much time on my hands to try and fill. I have ALWAYS been busy. I left high school and went straight to university and then left university and went straight to work. I'm sure most everyone realizes that being a student and being a teacher are both pretty time consuming roles to play. So I'm trying to broaden my horizons and see what else is out there...but I have no idea where to turn or what to do (other than recreational pursuits). My entire life has been centered around schools, it seems. I feel utterly dumbfounded when it comes to getting myself gainfully employed in other areas or even what areas I'd like to become gainfully employed in (and I'm starting to revisit the idea that perhaps teaching is not where it's at for me)! It's rather confusing...Do I seek further education to add to my bachelor's degrees (and how do I finance that? by tacking further debt onto my already existing student loan)? Do I branch out and do something totally different? Do I seek part-time employment that will allow me the flexibility to continue volunteering and perhaps snagging some sub time at some unknown point in the future? Do I go after a full-time job that will take away that option (and do I settle for just anything at this point or do I continue to look for something that will leave me with some satisfaction at the end of the day)? Is there a way I can become self-employed and make money off of my hobbies/talents/things I enjoy? And then there's pay...while I'm not exactly doing well at the moment and on the one hand some money is better than no money, on the other hand I'm not sure how I can go from the possibility of making decent money to the assurance of making much less and still find a way to make ends meet...if that makes sense. I guess the bottom line is I'm just feeling really scared and lost and hoping some divine opportunity or inspiration will fall into my lap and light my way through this dark, murky path I'm on...sooner rather than later would probably be best...

At the end of the day, I just really want to feel like I have a purpose. I want to be self-sufficient and feel good about what I do and how I spend my life. Is that so much to ask...? How on earth does everyone else make it in this city/province?

Unfounded Warnings Cause Web Traffic Scares

I've not been the most dedicated blogger, of late. However, I've more recently been working on remedying that a little. So, the fact that there have been warnings coming up for sites that use or are listed in the NL BlogRoll kind of escaped my attention for awhile. However, after reading this post at Townie Bastard and viewing this page at Blogrolling, as cited in a comment following that post, I decided to follow Townie's lead and remove the BlogRoll to see what happened. While I have never noticed any warnings when using Internet Explorer, whenever I use Google Chrome I am still getting that vexatious little warning...grrrr...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Another Saturday Night

No one said it would be easy starting over and this is certainly not where I thought I'd be at 30. However, it could always be worse...as one friend says to me, "You could be blind, pregnant and homeless. Then you would have real problems." Somehow that is cold comfort on a night like this...

Yes, it has been a long and lonely 24 hours. However, instead of falling into the "woe is me" mode, I thought I would try and keep it somewhat light. In that vein, may I present for your listening/viewing pleasure:

Well, you know...change the lyrics a bit and you get the drift. Tis just as well to laugh as to cry, as my great-grandmother used to say...

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Dating Drama II

I would like to think that I am nowhere near shallow. I don't have a "type" that I look for physically, and there are no specific criteria for measurements, hair colour, eye colour, or whatever for the most part. While we all have our preferences (I will admit that I tend to be drawn to those who are dark haired and taller than me, for instance), whether or not I will give someone a chance is by and large determined by their personality and not whether they are considered hot and buff to the general population. Although, naturally, there has to be an element of attraction in order to entertain the notion of dating someone, I don't think there is any set combination of features that equals attractiveness. Everyone is unique and what is inside shines through to play a big part in what we perceive on the outside. Have you ever noticed that you can meet someone who is only marginally attractive and when you get to know them they become the most beautiful/handsome/attractive person ever? Or vice versa - you meet someone who makes your knees go to Jell-O and the more you find out about them, the uglier they become?

Keeping that in mind, I have recently experienced every Internet dater's nightmare...meeting someone who looks NOTHING like you thought they would based on their pictures (a word to the wise: be wary of side profile pictures and sunglasses, and always ask how recent pictures are). Admittedly, I was taking a chance with this guy, who was out of my normal comfort zone in regards to age range (older, as in ). I can only imagine the look that must have been on my face when he turned and saw me walking into the coffee shop where we met (deer in the headlights, anyone?), although I tried my utmost to disguise it and muster a genuine smile - hey, it's tough to put yourself out there and I know that! And I did try to look past the superficial elements...but there were a lot of them. I stayed for an hour and a half to chat with him, partially to be polite and give him a fair shot and partially because there was some interesting story swapping going on. I'd like to think that his personality would have counteracted the effects of the physical if he was someone I could really click with, but that didn't happen. He didn't seem to possess the character traits I am looking for in a romantic interest either, and some of his mannerisms were a bit of a turnoff.

So...then there is the escape route. How does one go about getting out of those situations gracefully? Luckily, I apparently looked tired when I showed up (which he commented on - gee, thanks!), so I was able to use that to my advantage. I somehow got myself out the door and to my car without having to encounter the awkward potential hug/kiss goodnight moment that seems to accompany most first dates in my experience (and thankfully does not ALWAYS manifest and is not ALWAYS awkward when it does)...and then came home to a very complimentary message from him, which was sweet and would have thrilled me if it were from someone of whom I reciprocated those impressions, but unfortunately necessitated a speedier extraction from the situation than I had anticipated. Due to the lack of interest on my part and not wanting to give false hope or allow this man to feel like he was making a fool of himself, I had to woman up and reject him upfront. I did this as truthfully, gently, and compassionately as I could muster, but it still wasn't easy. You never know how people are going to take those things. Thankfully, he took it well and we ceased communication amicably. Phew! I hope the guy gets what he's looking for, though, all the same...if what he shared with me was true, it sounds like he's been through a lot with women who have taken advantage of him...

Dating Drama

Why is it that we get an impression in our minds of what someone is like and then it is sooooooo hard to replace it entirely when that turns out not to be the case? I was chatting with a guy who, although sometimes not the most talkative, seemed like the most decent and "together" guy I'd crossed paths with in quite some time. He looked so sweet and sensible in his pictures, too, and I was really looking forward to meeting him.

The first inkling that he was perhaps misrepresenting himself came when we added each other to facebook...where I saw pictures of him looking anything but sweet and innocent. Not that he was doing anything inappropriate, but you know how the look in a person's eyes sometimes acts as an early warning system? Well this boy all of a sudden became edgy and dangerous looking and red flags started flying...but then again...a picture is just a picture and looks can be deceiving, right? So I met him. I enjoyed his company. There was great chemistry...and he began to smash major holes in my image of him. Which is probably a good thing to have happen earlier rather than later in the game. He outright asked for sexual favours when we were kissing on the first date (I was appalled and indignant and verbally smacked him in the head for that one) and texted and called me at 4am the next day (luckily my phone was on quiet) and when I discovered this and made it clear that it was not appreciated and I was not in the market to be someone's booty call, he claimed he'd been locked out of his apartment and had been freezing outside. I didn't buy it, but guessed there was a very slim chance it could have been true...my sense of fairness and not judging too quickly really does make me come across as ridiculously innocent and naive sometimes...

Long story short, for some reason all the things I had wanted and initially believed this person to be persuaded me to go out with him a second time. SIGH. While there was somehow still a sweetness and considerate air about him in a way and I still enjoyed his company, he admitted that he lied on his dating profile about wanting a relationship in order to get more hits, told me about an incident in which he had cheated on a girl for a year because she was the type to cry about everything and he didn't want to break up and hurt her feelings (so you do that to her and hurt her ten times worse???), and contradicted some of the things he had said to me on the first date, making it crystal clear (as if it wasn't already, even though I was bound and determined to put the blinders on) that he is a total player and was just feeding me whatever he thought I wanted to hear in the hopes of getting what he wanted.

Why is it that we refuse to believe what's in front of us sometimes (even when we ourselves identify it!) in favour of what we want to see and believe? How is it that we think we can fill someone with all the things we want them to be? We cannot impart morals and values and all-around goodness into someone else. It just doesn't work that way. Yet I still want to look at the positive aspects of this person in the face of everything that he isn't. It doesn't even make sense! I know I am worth a hell of a lot more than this guy could ever give me at this point. He doesn't deserve a second of my time and is delusional if he thinks he's pulling the wool over my eyes in any way, but I have continued to talk to him when he has contacted me. I must be insane. Is it boredom? Is it some misguided notion that hiding underneath the bad boy hiding underneath the good guy facade is the really good guy I saw in the beginning? The hope that maybe he will wake up and change? The experience of learning more about the player psyche to better equip myself in future? The challenge of demystifying the cat and mouse game? Or have I simply lost all my marbles?

Monday, October 11, 2010

The Dirty Thirties

Ok. It's official. I have entered the third decade of my existance. Oddly, it's a little hard to wrap my head around as of yet. However, I have been told by several women that the 30s are where it's at...as a colleague of mine once put it, "In your 20's, you figure out who you are and what it's all about. In your 30's, you start to put it all together and solidify your life. And by the time you hit your 40's, you are who you are and you just don't give a shit what anyone thinks anymore." So...while I'm feeling a little nostalgic about the end of an era, I'm really looking forward to seeing what my 30's have in store. I do, however, have to put in some pretty hard work over the next little while to see what I can make happen for myself here. Time to pull those bootstraps all the way up and get a little tougher and more determined, I suppose! (And besides, I have nothing to worry about, right? I mean, after all - they do say that 30 is the new 20).

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Spared By Igor

So. I am happy to report that I got off lightly. All I had to contend with was a power outage of several hours and extreme boredom. There were many who were not nearly as fortunate, and, while I am ever grateful that I was spared, my heart goes out to them. Within my own family, there was extensive property damage but, thankfully, no injuries or loss of life. I actually did not realize the severity of what was going on outside for the most part (and in different parts of the island), as I opted to stay at home (with no phone, cable, or Internet - hence the obliviousness to anything I could not see out the kitchen window) to aid my mother in keeping her sanity. She's a big worrier, and I didn't want to add to her stress...not that it was a completely selfless action...I have to admit, it was not very tempting to go through the door with the weather as it was...I've seen the countless stream of pictures and videos on facebook though. Not nice. Here's hoping everyone effected will get the help they need to bounce back sooner rather than later.

...In other news, I have finally started contacting theatre and choir groups and am hoping to have some memberships solidified soon.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Treading New Ground and Lacking Excitement

I have been tepidly navigating the world of online dating off and on for the past few months. It is certainly a whole new ballgame trying to meet people when you are nearing 30 as opposed to when you are barely 20, let me tell you!

I was thinking I was doing better than the average Internet dater, judging by the cynical profile descriptions and horror stories of whackos - through sheer luck, everyone I had talked to up to a certain point seemed relatively normal and decent...and then the weirdos started coming out of the woodwork. I guess it was bound to happen sooner or later. I'm surprised at the number of guys (I can't really speak for the girls as I haven't been perusing them or conversating with them) who are willing to sleep with someone they've never seen a picture of or spoken to/chatted with, let alone met! Wow. That was an eye-opener. I also didn't realize that being able to spell and use correct grammar and punctuation automatically places someone in an elite group. One would think those are pretty basic skills, but apparently not... Anyway, I could go on, but I'm sure everyone has had or heard of the same sorts of things these days since online dating is so common. Suffice it to say it's been an interesting learning experience! I did manage to make myself a couple of good guy friends though, so it hasn't been a total waste of time (and it may still yield other fortunate results - who knows - but I'm not exactly holding my breath).

Other than that, the apartment is slowly coming together and getting in order and I have still been fighting to get a foot in the door work-wise. Life's a whole lot more lowkey now that everyone else has gone back to work and the weather is changing and it's sometimes rough to find things to do to keep myself from going insane, still. But I'm ok with living alone. That was a big adjustment and, surprisingly, it did not take long to adapt and embrace it. Having said that, I am very lucky to have a bunch of friends and family within a 15 minute drive for those times when I'm extra lonely and heading towards stir-crazy. I'm also in the midst of trying to find/contact some theatre/choir groups to broaden my circle and fill up my evenings a bit. I really need to diversify again at this point. This life is not enough for me as it is...

Wednesday, September 1, 2010


It's been 5 months and counting since I returned to my home province. I've now resettled in Kilbride and am living solo again. I have mixed feelings about the experience. There are times it is liberating and empowering and I love my own company. There are others when it is so devestatingly lonely and I feel so restless and uncomfortable I could scream or cry...and sometimes do. I have come to realize that I have been stubbornly refusing to go through a lot of the post-breakup process...that I have been practicing extreme avoidance through distracting myself by being constantly on the go with friends (not that there's anything wrong with that) and scouting for potential dates/wasting time on a lot of Mr. Wrongs. In short, I have been guilty of doing what I have always told friends who went through breakups NOT to do: I have not been learning to love myself more and taking care of myself the way I should be, I have not been actively getting in touch with myself and getting to know myself again, I have not been using my time wisely and filling my days with the things I enjoy doing, I have not been working on all the things I was excited about being able to work on again...I have not been actively learning to how to be on my own and I have been depending on other people for entertainment.

Up until a couple of weeks ago, I experienced relatively little upheaval from this whole transition in terms of going from being in a relationship to being single. Some, yes, from time to time, but not a lot. Mostly I was ok...just frustrated at what I perceived as having gone backwards in my life plans in a sense, and being stuck living with my parents in the boondocks. I dated an old flame, met a few new guys, and did a lot of going out and celebrating my freedom with my friends. And now reality is setting in. August was a slowing down period and today September stepped up and smacked me in the face. I mean, seriously, I got my hair done today and barely even got any enjoyment out of it for Pete's sake! You know there's something wrong when...! I seriously have not cried as much as I have in the past couple of days in YEARS (well except for last year this time when I realized my relationship was falling apart - and WHY did I stay so long after that again???). I am also in the midst of trying to quit smoking again (my dirty little secret...I picked it up little by little after being around the old flame and the old friends all the time - all of whom smoke - and have been battling getting back to smokefree...and that adds to the emotional turmoil. Last time I quit 5 years ago I was a basketcase for a while with the withdrawal, etc).

In short, I am a mess right now. I am sitting in this discomfort, seemingly unable to pull myself out of it at the moment, and hoping it doesn't last long. Don't get me wrong - I would rather be alone than in an unhappy/unhealthy relationship and I don't regret making the choice to leave. I just despise this feeling of weakness and yearning that stems from being an affectionate person and having no one to give that affection to while being unwilling to settle for just anyone to bestow it on...if that makes sense. It's kind of a battle between being pathetic and clinging to my standards. It's hard to be patient and wait for the right man when you don't even know if he exists anymore and all you can do is convince yourself to hang in there and hope he crosses your path sooner rather than later...but realizing that it's probably best if he doesn't show up yet for awhile anyhow because you're not exactly at the top of your game...

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Another Move on the Horizon

It's official. My life since November has consisted of packing, unpacking, and driving. It looks like I will be staying with my brother for a bit and eventually moving into the apartment I have lined up in Kilbride. I hope I'll like it there.

Eventually, I will have enough time to revamp the blog to reflect the changes that have taken place...but first, I really need to get my life back on track. I can't wait to start filling it up with things I enjoy again instead of holding my breath and twiddling my thumbs trying not to go insane with the combination of boredom and frustration.

...and that's not to say that I haven't enjoyed a single moment since I've been home, because that is simply not true. I have spent a lot of time with friends and family and it's been great. However, I am, as a dear friend of mine pointed out the other day, "a planner" and I am currently suffering the discomfort of being unsettled and unsure of what is going on and where life is headed. Unfortunately, that little issue has been persistently plaguing the space in the back of my head that is prone to worrying about and dwelling on those sorts of things.

On that note, I have way too much to do right now to be sitting here procrastinating. There is, of course, packing to be done!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Another Rough Month

It has been yet another rough month so far. My grandfather passed away three days after my last post. I am glad he didn't suffer for an extended period of time, but it is still difficult to lose someone you love and it's a little hard to wrap your head around when it happens quickly. I had more of a part to play in the days afterwards than I've had in the aftermath of the deaths of other friends and family, and I have to say it is a whole new experience to have to take part in tying up the loose ends of someone's life and the arrangements that have to be made to finalize (for lack of a better word) their time on Earth instead of having to contend solely with thoughts and grief. Specifically, I was put in charge of proof reading the obituary, doing the "write up" for the church bulletin to be used at his funeral, reading a passage from the Bible at the funeral, helping to fill out the necessary financial paperwork for my grandmother, and writing the note of thanks to go in the newspaper. It was difficult, it was stressful, and it also gave me something to focus on to get through this time and feel useful.

I spent the weekend in St. John's apartment hunting again. I called/emailed about upwards of thirty apartments and ended up viewing only six. Of those six, two were what I would consider "dives," three were decent, and one was absolutely gorgeous. Although my heart was set on the "gorgeous" spot, I decided on one of the "decent" places (which was cheaper and therefore more practical), and the landlady said she would get back to me in a couple of days. I am keeping my fingers crossed and hoping it pans out...

Of course, I still don't have a job either which is becoming somewhat frustrating. I am, however, lucky enough to have awesome parents who (although it is incredibly embarrassing to have to ask for at this age) are willing to back me up until I can stand on my own two feet again. There are those who are of the opinion that it is stupid of me to look for a place to live before I have a job to pay for it, but I happen to think that once I am in town things will fall into place. I will have more time to look for employment and I will be in there already when it comes time to start...and as an added bonus I will have my own space once more and feel somewhat like an adult again. Besides, according to everyone I've talked to, apartments are scarce these days and the competition for them is fierce. Hence, wouldn't it make sense to focus my efforts there for the time being to make sure I have a place to live before everything is scooped up by the new group of students moving in for the fall semseter at MUN?

Anyway, I will stop babbling and trying to rationalize. I have a touch of cabin fever again today and it is only Monday yet so that is not a good sign...but the wind in the trees and the fresh air coming through my bedroom window sure are nice...

Monday, June 7, 2010

Perceptions and Time

So...in the smaller picture, the job and apartment hunting continue. I have to say, it feels rather a daunting task some days...and wow has rent ever gone up in St. John's in the past 5 years! I am trying to stay optimistic and am hoping to have something by July, so wish me luck!

In the bigger picture resides other, more serious and saddening, news: mortality has once again come knocking on my family's door. I know everyone has to go at some point, so to speak, and we all have to experience our times of difficulty as those left behind, but it never makes it any easier to face, does it? A dear friend of mine recently lost his uncle and my heart ached for him as he is away from home...I know how that feels, having gone through it myself a couple of years ago. However, little did I know I would be preparing for the same thing myself again so soon afterwards...

My stepfather's father - my last living grandfather (I have been blessed enough to have enjoyed three sets of living grandparents plus a couple of great-grandmothers in my life) - got sick shortly after I moved home. When his wife was finally able to convince him to go to the doctor (he is a very cranky, stubborn - yet lovable - old man), they were told it was pneumonia and he was prescribed medication for it. After three sets of antibiotics, things still were not improving much, and so he underwent more testing during a hospital stay to receive further treatment for his illness. A couple of weeks ago, we were told that he actually has cancer in both lungs. It was my understanding through conversations with family that the doctors predicted that he would have a few months to live, at the very least. That assessment has been changing rather rapidly and drastically...it was shortened to weeks, and now appears to be most likely a matter of only days.

Given that my grandfather was a heavy smoker (for somewhere in the neighbourhood of 60 years) and a diabetic (and never ever really took care of himself or altered his diet much), it didn't really come as a surprise that one day it would catch up with him. He himself took the news with a nonchalant, "well at least I got 77 years out of it," and I think he lived those 77 years the way he wanted to and enjoyed them. Which is kind of good, despite the not so good decisions he made for his health...but it didn't make it any easier to watch him go from a robust, crotchety, teasing, lively sort of man who wouldn't slow down or give in, to the man I saw before me when I visited his bedside yesterday evening inside a couple of weeks..or to see the toll it is taking on his wife of 51 years and their children - including my stepfather...and it doesn't make it any easier to realize that - very soon - we will all be saying goodbye...a fact which is only now starting to hit me as I am writing this. Odd how seeing it written in my own words on the screen makes it more real, somehow.

It's also strange how time plays such a huge role in our lives. Hours, days, weeks, months...they take on a whole new perspective and a whole new relevance depending on the matter at hand. A length of time can seem interminable or impossibly brief in relation to the events and emotions being experienced. Funny how that works.

I am glad that I am home right now - both to offer support and to be supported, but also so that I was able to spend some last moments with my grandfather while he was still his regular old self.

It's funny how when things unfold you can look back and see that they all fell into place a certain way for a reason and they start to make more sense. Not to say that I am only here because this was going to happen, but in retrospect, the events of the past year seem to have been part of a grand design - my move home being just a minuscule piece of the puzzle.

And thinking of all of these things makes the turmoil I've been experiencing trying to put my life back together seem so small and insignificant in comparison.

Yes, the imminence of death certainly has a way of putting everything back into perspective...

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Single Life Update

It has been a while...some things have changed and others have stayed pretty much the same...

I am almost done with the unpacking/repacking/organizing phase, but I really do hope to have my own place again very soon (even though that will mean partially starting that phase over again). Great as it is for my parents to take me in, I am finding it very hard to deal with not being on my own at the moment. I really need to have my own space...preferably in St. John's, where most of my friends are situated at present.

I'm still looking for a job. I've applied for a bunch but so far no feedback. It would be nice to be employed again. I'm trying not to get down over it, but it's hard not to sometimes.

I'm done with grieving for my failed relationship and have started dating again. It's fun and exciting in some ways, but it sucks in others. Let's face it, all those awkward first moments you have to contend with whenever you start seeing someone new are not exactly a pleasure to go through. And honestly, I really miss having someone to love and you can't love just anybody. Now that I'm dating again I tend to swing between just wanting to enjoy the moment and not get too attached to not wanting to waste time with anyone who I don't see becoming a long-term prospect. I'm finding I am also tending to over analyze my thoughts and feelings a lot more than usual and it is increasingly difficult to figure out just what I AM feeling a lot of the time. On the bright side, though, parts of me that have been buried for a long time are re-emerging and it's nice to experience them again. It's all a part of that weird, post-breakup head space I suppose. There are days when I'm just happy to be on my own with an opportunity for a fresh start and there are days when all I want to do is curl up and cry because I have to start over in so many ways which can be, at times, very frustrating and overwhelming. I really didn't think this is where I would be at almost 30. I thought I would be settled in my career and started on my own family by now and that doesn't seem to be anywhere in the cards in the foreseeable future and is kind of depressing to think about.

I'm bored a lot of the time. There isn't a lot to do around here (or, not a lot that I want to do at least) and I experience frequent bouts of cabin fever and going stir crazy. Hence, I usually take off on the weekends to try and retain my sanity.

Anyway, it's quite a process. I don't remember things being so complicated the last time I went through a major breakup...then again I was in my early twenties at that point so I guess they really weren't. I had loads of time and not much to worry about. I just really hope all of this will have been worth it in the end. I guess in some ways it already is...I'm attempting to move on and trying to find happiness instead of staying where I knew the potential for it had dwindled to the point of no return. That has to count for something, right? However, I do wish all those doors I thought I saw would start opening up already...

Friday, April 16, 2010

Name Change

So, as mentioned awhile ago, the move back to the island kind of necessitates a name change for the blog. So far, I am drawing a blank (although, admittedly, I haven't exactly been putting a lot of thought into it with so much else on my plate). I'm thinking probably something that would reflect new beginnings or a return home (since that will likely be the predominant theme in my blogs for awhile), but haven't yet come up with anything I like. Any suggestions out there to get me started?

In other news, I have finally been able to regain enough stability to start getting back on track with my normal diet and exercise routines (which have been thrown completely out of whack for the last couple of months or more, which has in turn resulted in unwanted extra poundage on top of what I was already wanting to shed). I am happy to report that after only a few days, I am already down 1.2 lbs. Yay me! Let's hope that continues!

...And one last note: I am really not enjoying getting reacquainted with Newfoundland's version of spring. YUCK! I have been totally spoiled over the past few years. Imagine - experiencing seasons as they were meant to occur within the timeframes they are expected to occur. What a novel idea! In the big picture, it's not that big a deal, of course. It is only weather, after all, and we are notorious for not having great weather out here in the middle of the Atlantic. And it is more than a fair tradeoff to put up with poor weather in turn for being around so many people I love and need right now...but a girl can rant and complain for a bit, can't she?

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Boredom Reigns

How is that possible, you ask? Well I am a notorious procrastinator in certain situations (but in my defence, I usually get shit done when it comes to the crunch and I never let things slide that will have a majorly negative impact on myself or those around me. My bills are always paid on time and all that jazz). Hence, although there are a million boxes waiting to be unpacked, the thought of tackling them is totally unappealing. I did put in a bunch of hours in my parents basement today doing just that, however, followed by an overdue yoga session and a nice, hot bath.

...And then night came...all motivation fled and I have been bored stiff ever since about 7pm or so. Sigh...

Add to that that tonight is opening night for the play I had to back out of in BC and I'm actually pretty bummed to be sitting here and not having a blast on the stage. Oh, fellow thespians, break a leg in my honour this eve! Would that I could be there with you! (Note to self: MUST get settled and search out theatrical pursuits ASAP).

Ah well, c'est la vie I guess. I will just put my frustrations out there in cyberspace and hope tomorrow is a better day...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

As the Dust Settles

So, I've been home now for almost a month. It's amazing how quickly time passes by. I am still knees deep in getting myself situated here and it will take awhile to get through the healing process and get back on my feet again (although I am surprised by my own strength and resilience in navigating this situation at the same time). In the meantime, it is really good to have close friends and family around me (although I do still miss those I've left behind in BC) and reconnect with a few people I haven't seen or hung out with in years. Life is starting to regain some of it's former lustre, which is a good thing.

That being said, I'm also more than a little surprised at how unfamiliar everything feels...I thought it would be an easy transition that way - well, not in terms of moving in with my parents again for the time being after 12 years of being on my own (so to speak), but I mean I was born and raised here and have been back to visit practically every year since I left so I was not expecting it to be quite so hard to get readjusted and stop feeling like a sore thumb in so many ways. All in due time, I guess...

I really can't wait for my car to get here though. That will go a long way in regaining my independence, for sure, and make working and getting my own place in "town" (and being self-sufficient) again a little easier. Because, seriously, I don't think I can handle not living in a city of some sort anymore at this point, whether it's small or large. Perhaps in the future it might sound more appealing, but for now I definitely need to have more variety and options open to me than a rural town or outport can supply. Not that there's anything wrong with small towns or outports. I quite enjoy them - but to visit at this point and not to stay.

The bottom line is, I've been through a lot in the past couple of months and I have a lot more work to do to get back on track on multiple levels. I am still in that weird post-breakup headspace some days and others I am amazed at how far I've come already in putting my life back together and finding some sort of normalcy, enjoyment, and excitement for myself. Yes, a door has closed and my life has taken a different path than I had anticipated. There was a lot of grieving for what could have been as I watched that door swing shut. But now that that initial phase has mostly passed, I've gotten through the difficult cutting ties and getting myself home phase, and a calm, rational acceptance has settled in in the aftermath, it is rather refreshing to come to the realization that a whole bunch of other opportunities now stand before me that I would not have had the chance to seriously consider before.

It is also nice to be able to view everything through an amicable lens in terms of the one I left behind. I really hope he is doing well and getting himself back on track, too. I truly wish him nothing but the best. He is a great guy in very many ways and it was a sad and difficult decision to give him up...but it to was the right thing to do.

And that's it, in a nutshell...my body is coping with the physical effects of all the stress I've been through and my brain is doing what it can to finish healing my heart. And life goes on...

Monday, March 22, 2010

Coming Home

Well, I arrived safe and sound in Newfoundland on the 18th (the trip home is a story in itself that I may tell you some other time) and I am hoping to be back to blogging again shortly. For now, suffice it to say I am facing quite a lot of adjustments during this transitional phase and there are a lot more to come before life regains some semlance of normalcy for me. In the meantime, there are decisions to be made and sifting and sorting of all kinds to be done. Wish me luck!

Monday, March 1, 2010

I had so much to say about my Vancouver 2010 experience but it will have to be put on hold for a little longer still, as something more important has come up in my world...

It appears the blog will be in need of a new name pretty soon. My long term relationship has recently come to an end and I will be heading back east solo in the weeks to come.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Random Rants

OK, first of all I wait a whole week all atwitter in suspense and anticipation for the next episode of Republic of Doyle...only to be met with a rerun of the first episode at 9pm. What the hell, CBC?

And now that that is off my chest...

We (well, I, really) have been doing a lot of looking into the free/low cost events and venues we could hit whilst in Vancouver over the weekend, and the sheer multitude of possibilities makes planning some sort of schedule/route (which falls to my partner, since he is more familiar with getting around Vancouver) a little overwhelming. I have picked plenty of options and plenty of back-ups if, for some reason, they fail. However, what astounded me most of all was the amount of negativity expressed on some of the websites I've been searching in regard to wait times, disappointed reactions, and inconsideration/rudeness. I am sincerely hoping things are not as bad as those people are making them out to be or this will be shaping up to be a rather unenjoyable experience. While I can see the point of those people who have shelled out mega dough to take part in other Olympic activities, only to have an underwhelming, mediocre (or worse) experience, I think one maybe has to put it into perspective in this case and realize that these particular things are available for free or close to it and perhaps keep the whining to a minimum. Then again, I guess there is no real excuse for poor planning and bad communication in some cases. We will see what tales I can tell when I return though, hey?

The fact that the amount and/or lack of French content in the opening ceremonies is being so hotly debated is becoming a tad annoying, as well (Why all the fuss over French content?, Opening ceremony lacked French content, Fight over French sours Quebec Day at Games). Admittedly, I did perceive some noticeable gaps of French representation in the Olympic ceremony proceedings and it does irk me at times how some British Columbians view French Canada - then again there are people throughout the country who hold those views to a certain degree (as well as those francophones who happen to have more than their share of issues with us anglophones), although I think being so far removed from the eastern provinces contributes a little more to western bias. A simple illustration of it's lesser importance out here is reflected in BC schools, for example, where core French is taught from grade 5 to grade 8 by classroom generalist teachers and students are allowed to opt out if parents make enough noise. I am not sure how it stands today, but I know that when I went to school in Newfoundland, the importance of learning French was made known to me early on and core French was mandatory from grades 4 to 9 and taught by specialist teachers. However, I do think that VANOC did a decent job of including French in the ceremonies. And really, do we need another blemish on the face of the Vancouver Olympics right now or another excuse to keep the anglophone/francophone fight going? Why ruin the games by bitterly fixating on these things?

Moving along, I am a little disturbed at all the negative media attention Canada is receiving as of late - whether deserved or undeserved. I have always been proud of my province and proud of my country and seeing it's image being slammed from multiple angles has thoroughly bruised that pride. It is more than a little upsetting and embarrassing to see our reputation on the world stage becoming so tarnished. While I'm on that note, I am even more embarrassed to see the negative feedback on Atlantic Canada House at citycaucus.com and a bit offended that someone wrote that Newfoundlanders are suspicious and rude in the comments section as well. I sincerely hope that is not the way we are being perceived these days, because that would be a real tragedy. We have always been lauded for our friendly, down to earth people and I would hate for us to lose that. I'm sure it takes more than one random comment from a single visitor to turn the tide, but still....

Finally, my partner happened to stumble upon PETA's newest logo which stems from the anti-seal hunt campaign via the Vancouver Olympics. While normally I would not even bother to acknowledge them and give them free publicity (which is also why I am not including a link or photo here), I have to say the ads and logos they have created this time are even more ridiculous than usual. And, seriously, other than Atlantic and Northern Canadians who have relocated here, how much of a connection do they honestly think western Canadians have with the seal hunt, good, bad or indifferent?...Although I will admit that I was appalled and incensed to the point of *almost* going inside to give the owners a piece of my mind to see a sign outside a hostel in Kelowna a couple of years ago declaring that Canadians are embarrassed by the seal hunt or some such nonsense to that effect...and I was also gullible enough to be brainwashed by the propaganda and be ashamed of that part of my Newfoundland heritage when I was younger. Of course, then I grew up and looked into the reality of things. I must say, it is amazing what you see when you open your eyes and look past the cute white poster pups they like to flaunt everywhere in the hopes of pulling your heartstrings and emptying your wallet for their cause. I know they lump the whole country together as taking part in the hunt and/or being responsible for it, and I get that it is about how they can portray us to the world at large and get them to buy in, but still it seems utterly stupid to me to connect the two.

On a completely unrelated note, I heard on the radio the other night that there is a raven at the Green Castle Golf Course that has been stealing golf balls...more evidence that I am right to be creeped out by them and their crow relatives...damned David Suzuki documentary...
Anyway, it's late, I've had a long, rough day and I don't even know if what I have written even makes sense at this point so I'm thinking it is high time I shut up and went to bed. Good night!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Visiting the Olympics

Yup, we are going to the Olympics...well, I use that term loosely...we are attending the Cultural Olympiad portion of the events on Friday to see Hey Rosetta! at the Orpheum :-D. They are opening for the Montreal indie group Stars (who I had previously never heard of but recently checked out on MySpace and approve of listening to for a night in order to see Hey Rosetta!). I am stoked!

We were actually holding out hope that perhaps we would be able to check out a sporting event while we were down there - funny, I know. I went searching online just to see what might be available and, initially, was a little excited to see ticket prices listed at $140 for men's Canada vs USA hockey...until I signed in and researched the whole auctioning process and the fan to fan marketplace to discover that available ticket avenues are actually boasting prices ranging anywhere from $975 to $39 000 for the privilege of viewing that game. Ludicrous. I moved on to other venues and events with similar results. So, needless to say, there went any hopes of attending an event. It's rather ironic, actually. When we heard the initial announcement that the Olympics were headed to Vancouver in 2010 a couple of years ago we thought it would be cool if we could be here to attend but largely ignored it, thinking we most likely wouldn't still be in BC right now...and here we are...ticketless.

Let the Games Begin

After the longest torch relay in Olympic history, the Vancouver Olympics are finally set to start.

I'm sure the opening ceremonies garnered a huge global audience - including moi. I tuned in somewhere towards the beginning. There were a few things that stuck with me throughout the broadcast. Some curious, some heartwarming, some heartbreaking, and some just plain odd.

Firstly, it was very shocking and sad to learn that 21 year old Georgian luger Nodar Kumaritashvili died tragically due to complications from his horrific crash during a training exercise earlier today. However, the way his teammates rallied and showed their solidarity and respect for him through removing their hats and wearing black armbands in his memory when they entered BC Place this evening was rather touching. It was also fitting that his death was acknowledged a couple of other times during the ceremonies and marked with a moment of silence.

I was moved to hear the story about the Indian team (consisting of 3 athletes, if I remember correctly), who showed up with mismatched uniforms. The Indo-Canadian community (in the Vancouver area I believe) drew together and got them a matching set, even going so far as to provide them with spending money and funding for future training. Also falling into this category is the news that the parents of one of the Turkish athletes could not get tickets to watch their daughter compete, and so an anonymous donor came forward and provided them.

I find it disgusting that 5 Russian athletes tested positive for banned substances and still took part in the opening celebrations and will probably still be competing for their country, as no one has stepped up to do anything about it yet. Oh...the Russians did say they will take care of it after the Olympics are done. That's some kind of BS, if you ask me.

It was interesting to see the myriad of countries being represented at Vancouver 2010, and quite remarkable to see each team of athletes proudly marching into the stadium, no matter the disparities in their numbers (they ranged from 1 to over 200). The entertainment portion was obviously carefully engineered to display the great diversity found from coast to coast in Canada - both through the peoples who inhabit our vast country to our wealth of extraordinarily talented performing artists...although I have to wonder whether there could have been better choices to represent some of those aspects, and the appropriateness of others was questionable. For example, Nelly Furtado's outfit for her less than impressive performance with Bryan Adams, KD Lang's choice of Hallelujah towards the end (the music itself fit the mood, but I am not so sure the lyrics themselves relate to the Olympics at all), and Nikki Yanofsky's rendition of Oh Canada , with the very American over the top vocal theatrics thrown in, which I was not a fan of at all. I mean, the kid's got a great set of pipes, but the Olympic opening ceremonies are not the time to butcher our national anthem to show off the fact that you know how to stylize when belting out a tune. All in all, though, the ceremonies provided a great, well-rounded showcase for Canadian arts and culture (aside from the overwhelming componenet of famous musicians) - from First Nations performers to the Alberta Ballet to tap dancers and fiddlers.

Among other notable flubs (in no particular order):

- the First Nations leaders who were made heads of state for the Olympics causing confusion when they showed up late, resulting in an awkward pause in the proceedings punctuated with lots of shuffling around

- The VANOC CEO's inability to correctly pronounce the few French words and phrases thrown into his speech, then having to stand next to IOC President Jacques Rogge as he delivered his significantly more fluent bilingual version

- Nelly Furtado opening her mouth to sing Bryan Adams's line in their duet and ending up mouthing the words with no sound(I'm sure that did not help the rumblings that have sprung up of it being a lip synced performance)

- the hydraulics failing at the crucial last moments when the indoor cauldron was being lit, leaving Katrina LeMay Doan standing there, torch in hand, without a pillar to light after the other three finally made an appearance. I found it quite entertaining that the cameras captured the confusion on all the final torchbearer's faces as they stood there in the awkward moments leading up to that point, wondering what the hell was taking so long.

...and while I'm at it...I still fail to comprehend why Arnold Schwarzenegger got to carry the flame on the final day leading up to the games.

Lastly, Wayne Gretzky looked kinda nervous at times on the last leg of the torch run to the waterfront in the pan of that truck. Although I can't say as I blame him - I would have been mighty tense too, what with reports of 25 000 protesters being outside BC Place at the time. Not to mention the crowds lining the streets, some of whom began to swarm the truck, run alongside it, or dash in front of it.

Ah well, better or worse, all of the lead up is finally out of the way and the hunt for medals is now underway. Let's hope someone can

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Republic of Doyle Episode 6

Yes! They clinched it! After a great opening, we were treated to an equally great show this week. Republic of Doyle hit exactly the right note and stayed there the whole way through episode six, aided in part by the use of flashback and rewinding, which was a nice touch.

It was also interesting to find out more about Jake and Rose's respective pasts. Jake apparently WAS a bit of a bad ass when he was younger (burning down the Goulds rec centre, stealing a car, and smashing the windows in his high school at different points as a heartbroken adolescent), and the secret behind Rose's mysterious post card was a conveniently forgotten husband/convict. Incidentally, the scene with Rose and her ex in the kitchen of the home she shares with Malachy was a tad tense and steamy, n'est-ce pas?

I was a bit perturbed at the jumping from one kiss between Jake and the Constable at the end of the last episode to them rolling around in bed together in the middle of the day until I figured out what was going on with the story, but I like how the plot kept their current and prospective future interactions interesting.

Other random impressions:

The speech (mainly the use of dialect and expressions) was much more natural and flowing this time around, which was a relief. I am wondering why Tinny was completely absent from this episode (but it worked for me!), nonetheless, it was a nice touch to see Des make an appearance for consistency's sake. Oh, hey, and I just realized that Nikki was nowhere to be seen either. How about that?

The only (mild) criticisms I have this week are that:

1. I think there should have been a few more seconds of build up before the (then incognito) blonde RCMP officer discovered Jake following her. It seemed like there wasn't even enough time for her to have registered him on the street let alone figure out that he was on her tail...unless we were meant to believe that she had noticed him during other exchanges that we weren't privy to?

2. I found it a bit hard to buy into the car chase. It seemed a bit forced and farfetched to me...I guess problem with suspension of disbelief could also be due to a familiarity with the territory in question and a failure to have ever witnessed anything like that in Newfoundland (although I guess they do probably take place from time to time)


3. (Note: this had no bearing on the quality of the show whatsoever, nor am I trying to start any debates about physical appearances and their importance, or lack of, but) Jake's old flame annoyed me...something about her face and the protruding upper lip. It can't be helped. I have the same issue with Kirsten Dunst and a few others.

More good news: next week looks to be equally promising! ...well the potential is there anyway...although the preview included some of the "other stuff" in there...we'll see. I'm keeping my fingers crossed though...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

I Had A Dream

Literally. I dreamt last night that I was home...sort of. I was alone and traversing parts of my native province unknown to me with someone I did not know. It was very odd in some ways, yet strangely comforting and familiar. We drove, we window-shopped, we talked as we sat and watched the ocean (about what I know not now)...and when I stood to walk, I was suddenly gripped with a paralyzing fear when I started putting one foot in front of the other and realized I was standing a lot closer to the edge of a cliff on the shoreline than I would ever purposely go (I have a very big fear of heights...perhaps even a phobia). I was acutely aware of the fact that I was on an island and it felt like there was nowhere to go, even if I did get out of my current sticky situation. My mouth was dry and I was clinging to clumps of tall grass with white-knuckled hands, shaking and shivering a little in the cool breeze that had come out of nowhere, all the while attempting to hide my face - and my fear - from my travelling companion...who eventually clued in and helped me to reach more stable ground further inland. I remember thinking as I was standing there that the fear I felt was not one I had experienced in BC...which strikes me as odd, considering the heights in these parts are a lot higher than back home. Perhaps it was being above the ocean that did it? Anyway, we went and knocked on the door of an old weathered house that was reminiscent of the blackened, forgotten farm buildings and homesteads dotting the sides of the highway in some parts of BC (I had seen a man walk in and be greeted by a woman while I was feigning bravery amongst the rocks and grass earlier. I knew they were not married, but I also knew they were related somehow, either by blood or - more likely, through marriage). No one answered, but I could clearly see one side of the man's body sitting in a rocking chair in what I assume was the living room, through the connecting door frame of the kitchen as we stood on the ancient porch/patio(?) and somehow I knew he was reading the paper and that the woman was down the hall.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tragedies and Miracles

I was browsing MSN.ca a little while ago and a couple of things piqued my interest...

The first was an article titled 10 Things That Aren't As Cheap As You Think. I followed the link to get to page 2, and ended up here. Most items on the list were not news to me, but the controversy surrounding coltan - a mineral used in cell phones and other technological items - I had previously been unaware of, so I moseyed over to War Resister's International from there (which I had also never heard of until today) and read about the No Blood In My Cell Phone campaign to check it out. This enlightening pit stop prompted me to investigate further. I found this documentary online soon afterwards, which is quite thought provoking. The impressions I got in the beginning of the documentary began to transform at about the halfway point, I think. Like all good documentaries, nothing is clear cut and there are no easy solutions (...well except maybe the fact that it is a problem that needs to be addressed and that a good way of doing that would perhaps be for companies to look at bypassing the majority of middlemen involved and find more direct and ethical routes to mining/collecting the coltan to lessen opportunities for exploitation by all the dishonest and/or desperate individuals and corporations the coltan is channeled through on it's journey from the mines to the production plants - themselves included if current practices continue) but the intricate web surrounding the issue is somewhat untangled for the viewer to ponder and perhaps to do something about. At the very least it will create increased awareness. The documentary mentions Nokia and Motorola a couple of times and their supposed positions on the use of coltan from the Congo. However, it has got me wondering about my beloved BlackBerry. Sigh...one more thing to feel guilty about... (Also of interest on this topic: http://Mvemba's video report on coltan's role in Congo's civil war , Appfrica Maps Coltan From Congo to Your Cell Phone and War, Murder, Rape... All for Your Cell Phone).

And now, on to the miracle...

which also stems from a tragedy...

Four weeks after the 7.0 quake that devastated Haiti comes this incredible report:
Doctors: Haitian may have survived 4 weeks in rubble . It seems a little far fetched and hard to believe (hence the title on CNN, I suppose), but, like the doctor in the video, who am I to argue? If it is real and not a publicity stunt or something (which would be in seriously bad taste), this man may be one of the luckiest to have ever graced our planet.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Crows (and Republic of Doyle, Episode 5)

I've been really busy with rehearsals and performances of late, and have therefore been neglecting the blog. However, I thought I would post a quickie tonight before heading to the bunk here in a bit.

If you haven't seen this, I recommend you watch it. I haven't been able to look at crows the same way since. It never occurred to me to consider their intelligence and I never dreamt they could be so crafty. On the one hand, this program was very informative and it was extremely cool. On the other hand, to think of how watchful crows are and to now realize that there is a thought process going on behind those cold, hard stares has resulted in them totally creeping me out now!

And now, on to my reactions to episode 5 of R.O.D....

I was a little more interested in the story again this time around, which was a good thing. I thought some of the stuff with Nicki was overdone. I was a bit disappointed that Jake and Cst. Bennett were making out at the end (still too soon), although it was good to maybe see a light at the end of the tunnel of what is fast becoming the Jake/Nicki annoyance. Tinny was tolerable. I am intrigued to find out what's up with Rose's mail (in particular, what came from the jail). I got a kick out of the line about Des being from Gander and the shot Malachy took near the beginning of the episode about skeets (both totally inside jokes thrown in for the native Newfoundlanders and Labradorians). I enjoyed seeing St. Pierre et Miquelon. I'm not sure yet what to make of Gordon Pinsent's performance, but I enjoyed the scene with the gun on the table between him on one side and Jake and Malachy on the other. I did not enjoy Mark Critch(?)'s character (I'm not sure if I got that right...it looked like Mark Critch to me though...)at all...and the rest I'm going to have to sleep on and maybe come back to later...