Saturday, December 21, 2002

only a mad recap of things, because i don't have decent 'net access and yet i feel bad not writing about what's going on. silly, but so what.

so i'm in büchen at the moment. and it's quite lovely. started snowing the day i got here, and it's still white all about. went to berlin for a few days. absolutely loved the place. didn't get as much music-searching in as a i wanted, and the trip was curtailed by my knee popping out. again. and at the moment it actually feels almost as bad as it did when i first hurt it in january. have i mentioned how much i hate my body? can't wait to go home and talk to the doctors, because they said everything is fine, but if it's still popped out of place 3 times in the past month and a bit, surely there's a problem. however. did get to walk around the city a lot. did get to be astounded looking at buildings with bullet holes from 60 years ago still in them. did get to use friendly australians as human crutches. did get to try glühwein. did get to find a bunch of berlin music to love and not get around to buying. did get to see bertholt brecht's grave. and hegel. and engels. and yes, it was a minor thrill to see those, because i'm sad. the hamburger banhof, the pergamon, the jewish museum, and more. did get to know that i definately want to go back. missed the dali show, unfortunately, but oh well. money saved, i suppose.

had fun at christmas markets and tagging along with jasmin and her german friends. found it incredibly frustrating that i can't understand german, although they all seem really nice, but whatever. they did watch a bunch of movies in english (and we all mocked spiderman all the way through) last night. we need to find babelfishes though. i'd be so happy to understand someone else's conversation on the tram or be able to do more than just smile and nod and shrug helplessly when someone asks you a question. being a tourist and not knowing the language really means you have to feel like an idiot. not so much fun.

but life goes on.

...4 more days...

Sunday, December 15, 2002

[surprise internet access in the dorms still, hurrah!]

reason #46 why prague is great:
snack-shopping for the train in carrefour (prague's answer to safeway), busy as hell, but there's a bunch of samples about the place. including samples of wine, beer, brandy and other assorted shots, and much much more. oh, and some snacky mccain's food that you microwave first. which meant that the sample people gave you the food, and you stood in line to microwave it yourself in one of the four microwaves set up at another table. yay self-service! but yes. only in europe, can you get drunk on food samples in supermarkets.

didn't try most, sadly, although zlutypramen or whatever the hell that was wasn't entirely distasteful...

Saturday, December 14, 2002

off to germany first thing tomorrow morning. gonna be back in canada for christmas. exciting times.

also: it's very empty here now.

also: i'm very hungry. i'm bringing portuguese cheese with me to germany though, so that should be fun.

buying train ticket, must go.
tomorrow's the day we're supposed to be checked out of our rooms. i'm sleeping over in someone else's for the next night, before going to germany. get to see jasmin (crazy german girl), which is good. i just hope that germany doesn't turn into another calgary experience, feeling stuck there and just wanting to either be moving on or returning to where i came from. well, i'd only be wanting to make it back to vancouver, i think. so hopefully that won't be the case.

jasmin should be a good enough distraction, i think.

good lord, though, have i ever accumulated a lot of stuff. or maybe i just brought it all with me from the beginning. i don't know where it's all come from, though, but it's frightening. i may end up taking an extra suitcase home with me afterall, which was far from planned.

i have to remember to email my czech lit essay before i go to bed tonight. i'd do it now, but it still needs a final sentance. and i'm too busy not packing to do anything else right now.

i'm getting rid of everything. gonna go home, go through everything there, and i'm certain i'll be able to toss almost everything i own. well, except for the wedding dress. and the fedora. and the cow skull. and all the cds. but i betcha i can dump almost every magazine i have stored beneath my bed. if there's anything you want that you know or think i might have, lemme know, chances are it'll be yours.

Friday, December 13, 2002

i'm going to miss my current roommate next semester. she's only here the one semester, going back to the US in a day or so. i wasn't so sure about her from the beginning, she was nice, but i was a little concerned that there wasn't too much beneath the niceness. but then in the past month we've had a number of bonding conversations of a sort. and today with both commiserated in our respectively shitty days (her credit card company's stolen $600, she can't stop over in france and amsterdam anymore because she's out of money, and just frustrated with everyone leaving and wanting to just be home already. i'm with her on the last one today.. home means no more paper!). and.. that's all there is to say about it. i'll just miss her. she really is a well-meaning sweetheart.

oh, everythig is so melancholy and maudlin today!! it's revolting. makes me want to darn near puke.
according to ladislav klima:
the world is the creation of the individual's imagination, it is his plaything; in relation to the world man is a god, is God, directing everything; his will is the highest law, he himself is absolute will.

now wouldn't it be nice if saying things like that actually made them true?
guess what!!

it's snowing. lightly, but it's still snowing.

that's about all the good that i've got going for me today. brent's just found out that he'll have to work at the studio for the second week that i'm home. which means he'll be there long hours and overnights and all the way out in tsawassen, so the likelihood of me seeing him much is pretty much nil. so during my second week at home i won't get to see him when he's really the reason i was going home in the first place. nor will i see too many other people because some are working and some are returning to school away from vancouver and some just aren't going to be around. so really, my second week at home's pointless.

part of me really wants to change my flight so that i can go home earlier, just so that i actually get to see some people. but then i'll be abandoning the people in germany who want me there for christmas. really, i don't care about christmas with anyone, at this point i just want to go home. but i'm guessing it would be reasonably difficult to change my ticket. and the german people wouldn't like me much then.

everything felt like it was going so well there for awhile...

whatever. one paper. berlin. hamburg. vancouver. one good week, i hope. one boring week. and then away for another five months. whee.

Wednesday, December 11, 2002

on the down side...
...i have one more paper to write
...i missed a phonecall from brent, who chooses the one morning i have class to call
...there will be no living-in-mansions while i'm home
...everyone is leaving in the next three days and i'm never going to see most of these people ever again. it's sad.
...i have no long rambly emails from certain someones with which to procrastinate. even though they were promised. even though i bet you anything they've got things to ramble on about candles runneth-ed over and now the wax is stuck to the dishtowels like a motherfucker. any tips on getting candle wax out?

on the up side...
...i have only one more paper to write
...people finally recognised my ring tone when my phone went off in class today. yaaay fraggles! two weeks and 12 hours i'll be seeing brent at the vancouver airport
...there will still be visiting and playing around in mansions and studios
...i almost feel inspired to write the paper. almost
...the weather in prague's been glorious all week long. we haven't hit 0 degrees celsius once is just a happy day in general

Tuesday, December 10, 2002

current list of curses:

1 in-class essay in 3.5 hours
1 8-pg paper to be written by thursday
1 oral presentation for tomorrow morning, yet to be written
1 (more) visit to the foreign police in hopes that i can give them everything they want (last time they refused to take it, told me to come back thursday)
last-chance shopping for people at home
packing everything both for canada, as well as for a month-worth of travelling in january

and then i'm free. sorta. not really. but i'll pretend.
a letter to matt, as his email addy doesn't seem to be working:

subject: this is a pointless email

my dearest matt,

i am ever so jealous of your access to stereo total.
and that's all that i have to say about that.

with love,
sarah :)
happy neil innes' birthday!

Monday, December 09, 2002

Saturday, December 07, 2002

i like.

i also like. (turn on the sound.)

too much fun.

it works. it's true.


hurrah and jodi! boo to papers!

so i'm thinking about claiming not to have been in a course for credit in order to escape one paper. it's feasible. and i have no idea what to write for it either. there's a first time for everything...
guess what, i'm an aunty! congratulations to chris and michelle, who, as of december 4th, now have a baby daughter, celest!
what with all that excitement, i forgot to post what i originally meant to.

after spending a full 2 hours wasting my time completely because government organisations suck and visas suck and criminal record checks for a country that you've never lived in before this year suck, i was taking the tram home when this fellow got on and stood right next to me. i was standing on one of the stairs so i was a little lower than most people, wasn't paying attention to most of them, but i noticed him when he got on. he seemed nice and sweet in a billy boyd sort of way. and then i noticed that sticking out from beneath his vest was the mouth of a gun. and suddenly he went from being sweet and innocent to someone to beware of.

i don't know if he was a cop on his off-time, although his clothes looked a little too scruffy (particularly the boots), and he had stubble and messy hair, so i have no idea why he had a gun. it was very strange standing next to him after i saw that though.

forgive me, i'm canadian, guns everywhere are a little strange to me...
so while i'm at it, some random shots i've been saving up:

my favourite grafitti, that i pass most days on the tram...

a shot i like from a music fest...

and a terribly terribly wrong statue...

...and every other image needs to be resized, i think, but i'll do that another time. sorry these ones are so big. at least they should fit the screen, though. you'll just have to see the view from my class window another time. {g}
look! look! it's groovy saint christopher!

yes, everything's finally working properly, and sarah is a happy camper. who should be writing papers. but let's not dwell on the bad things now, deal?

Friday, December 06, 2002

just realised that i have access into any other computer connected to the 'net here in the dorm. opened a folder accidentally and suddenly saw access to so many other computers. which is a little perturbing. so i went and moved any folders that people would have access to if they went into my computer.

on the plus side, i found someone's music folder. stole a few songs off them.

sing on, neil diamond, sing on.

(and yes, i took two strokes songs as well. shut up. they wore me down.)
happy saint nicholas (or mikulas in czech) day, or however you spell it. got to see people dressed up as angels and devils walking around to frighten small children tonight. rather exciting, really.

Thursday, December 05, 2002

1 in-class essay on tuesday
1 oral presentation next wednesday
4 papers (27 pages) to be written by next wednesday
- 11 pages due monday
- 11 pages have topics set
- 16 pages have no topic and few ideas figured out at all
- 1 page written so far

next friday i think i'm leaving for germany and won't be back in prague until february, which means i have to pack by then as well.

end of semester sucks.
somebody has stolen our corkscrew. i swear we had one at some point, but can't find it at all.

s'a cryin' shame.
hurrah and huzzah, turns out the concert was cancelled! you know why it was cancelled? because tragically, i couldn't make it, being a good student and sitting here slaving away writing papers. and by writing papers, of course i mean enjoying new music and playing spider solitaire. because that's what paper-writing is all about, isn't it?
why have i had a million and one hits for "frankie muniz barefoot pics"? what's that boy been up to? and why am i ranked as the second site?
it's 3pm and it's already getting dark. you'd think that after 23 years, a person'd start to get used to these sorts of things.

it's also nice and misty outside. i'm pretending it's snowing, even though it's still too warm.

i'm dying with papers here, shush. i need my fun where i can get it.*

* i'm currently trying to decide if "where i can get it" includes going out to a club specifically to see a concert, which i know will keep me there nice and late, because that's the kind of place it is. dunno the bands, they sound intriguing, it's generally a decent club (although it's also the only place i've seen a fight take place, and it wasn't a pretty one), but i just don't know. 4 papers all due next week (none near finished), or one concert...?
if you're at all interested, the digital photos from portugal are posted here (under Portugal of course). thing is, i took a ton of photos with my real camera, but the digital one fell into matt's hands for much of the trip, which was fine with me. he wanted shots to mail to people asap, and i've found that i don't like taking digital photos near as much. only now, the only images i have to show are matthew's shots (mostly). which isn't bad, but it's not what i would have been taking pictures of, nor are they the kinds of shots i'd have been taking.

HOWEVER. they're there, you're welcome to have a look. excuse the noncreative captions, i just uploaded the bunch for matt to access, and i should be writing papers so i wasn't doing anything fancy.

our trip was lisbon - sintra - cascais - evora - faro - tavira - lagos - lisbon, if it means anything to anyone. despite what the photos look like, weather was beautiful almost every day. sintra had amazing palaces and great moorish ruins from the 8th century and gorgeous forests and freaky american tourist groups and cool bus drivers and portuguese choirs singing english christmas carols and grand italian food and views that reminded me of vancouver at night. went to cabo da roca, westernmost point in continental europe. cascais had the first real coast i'd been to in months and boca del inferno (hell's mouth) that roared when the water rushed into the cave quickly enough and calimari fishing with the locals. evora's a world heritage sight which had roman ruins from the 1st century and lovely wine and the best meal i had in portugal (fried calimari) and insane uni students who suggested to matt that he trade girlfriends with one of them for the night (i guess it's complimentary?) and roommates originally from korea currently from vancouver showing their animated short at a film fest. faro was the ghetto-est place i've been in a long time. tavira had old ruins (again) and friendly cell-phone stores that let us store our bags there all day and the best grilled cheese i've had in awhile and a misty rain that wouldn't give up. lagos had amazing beaches and awesome sunshine and wonderful waves and friendly british bars and snarky bartenders with great musical taste and connect 4 and sagres, the southwesternmost point of continental europe, with huge waves and lots of surfers and beautiful cliffs. and lisbon had pigeons and mormons and flash showers and windy streets and children playing football in alleyways and general wonderfulness.

and i wanted to post groovy saint christopher here but yahoo won't let me (because it is evil) and i don't know how to get around firewalls in order to upload the image to my own site and post it here (so if anyone can give me any advice on that, it would be really appreciated, because it's getting damn annoying, not being able to post any of my own images on here). so follow the link up there instead and have a look at him, on a wall in lisbon (my photo). he was all over the place in portugal. i really don't know why. catherine said that one belief surrounding him used to be that if you saw saint christopher, you wouldn't die a sudden death that day. (hurrah! i'd just have had a slow painful death while in portugal! i was safe!) although catherine has also told me that he was taken off the list of saints recently, as they figured that he was probably a fake. poor saint christopher. and still he grooves on.

him and rainbows. (the rainbow shots are mine too. all the rest are matt's. pretty much.) that's what i saw the most of out there. it was awesome.

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

if i spent the whole night waking up every twenty minutes, why can't i feel awake now that i have to be?

gonna mess up a czech exam now, hurrah!
amusing quotes that i'm finding in the midst of trying to find missing notes (somehow, even though i'm in prague, i still have notes from years ago with me. yes, i'm a true packrat):

"you know how when you see an animal, you recognise it as belonging on this planet?"
- jodi

"July 30, 2025: Sarah still feels insecure & scared, but she's since married chris as a fallback, and their kids are awfully cute, despite the fact that they're severely messed in the head."
- misplaced journal entry from july 30/01. although the entry isn't about it at all, that comment alludes to a conversation chris and i had where he decided that if we weren't married by the time we were 30, we'd default to each other. i argued that one, made him concede to 35. always snarky, even in writing to meself...

"Right ho! Bring me my whanger, my yellowest shoes, and the old green Homberg. I'm going into the Park to do pastoral dances."
- Bertie Wooster, in The Inimitable Jeeves (i think)

"Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia."
- E. L. Doctorow (b. 1931), U.S. novelist
stupid blogger. the one time i really want to edit the last entry i'd posted, it decides to go down for hours on end, meaning that what's showing all day today isn't what i want to be there. so frustrating.

it's a ploy to get everyone to buy into bloggerPro, isn't it. evil bastards.
it's so rare that reading something actually gives me chills up my spine. but reading charlotte perkins gilman's The Yellow Wallpaper did. or actually, it was more the explanation that followed it.

and i can't tell you why it did.

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

wow. there really is nothing like canned hamm singing "karaoke lady" to make you laugh (at their complete stupidity) regardless of your mood. well, regardless of my mood.

and i'm still listening to them. surely there's something wrong with me.
somehow i've ended up listening to death metal for the last long while. because that's what they're playing on the radio. and i'm too lazy to go find something else. and i'm sick of the music i do have with me. well, not really, but i just don't want to listen to it again right now. hence the death metal.

it's absolutely terrible though.

i bet half of the singers have mullets. actually, i suppose the mullet isn't so much a death metal thing. well, they would all have them if they were czech, at least.

just walked in on my roommate and someone else busy doing something involving bed and a decided lack of clothing accidentally. my roommate the virgin, i might add. fun times for her.

unfortunately my automatic reaction was to mention it to someone who'd just left my room who'd get as big a kick out of it as i would. unfortunately their automatic reaction, unlike mine, was to try to come back to my room, and make noise doing it. when normally i'd usually expect someone to snicker and leave 'em alone. at least for the time being.

and now she's mad at me (the other person, not the roommate), because i resorted to grabbing her hair to stop her.

no idea if the roommate heard her or not. i doubt she did.

we already knew that sarah can't keep secrets, didn't we. it'd be nice to be able to overcome some of my shortcomings though.

that aside. i love it how peoples' automatic reaction, when caught fooling around in bed, is to try to hide under the blanket. as though you'll be more prone to forget that the second person's there as soon as they're out of sight.

people are stupid. {g}

Monday, December 02, 2002

now that i have the 'net in my room, and music i haven't heard, and papers to write and czech to study, and candles providing all the light i need...

...i may never go to sleep. doh.
for tavie:

(cjsf is currently playing the overture to Sound Of Music right now. this must be gaalen{sp}'s soundtrack show. hurrah!)

(so how DO you solve a problem like maria?)
"dandy" has officially become the word of the night.

hurrah! there's internet in the dorms.
hurrah! i'm listening to cjsf and whoever's doing their show is playing groovy music. (i am a fan. play on, motherfucker.)
hurrah! it feels like winter and there's candles burning and incense burning and it feels grand. (dandy!)
hurrah! catherine and i snuck into a basement of a building being reconstructed and hit the jackpot, finding a collection of photos from the 60s and 70s spread all over the floor in one part and took a few with us. i'll try to scan some sometime.
hurrah! maybe i'll finally send the email i've been trying to send for over a week now.
hurrah! matt (aka gun-totin' american aka mah bitch) just cooked me chicken and rice pilaf and some sauce made with orange peppers.
hurrah! aqeel's let me use his phone the rest of the time i'm here, so long as he doesn't need it.
hurrah! aqeel's invited me out to an "exhibit" where there will be book readings and hobnobbing with swanky snobby artsy czechs and dressing up.
hurrah! vlasta danced and sang for my entertainment.
hurrah! lebkuchen.
hurrah! fraggle rock ring on my cell phone.
hurrah! czech exam on wednesday.

hang on.

Saturday, November 30, 2002

quiz on canadian social values. found the address scribbled on a piece of paper i've been carrying around for ages, don't remember where i got it. but apparently i'm a new aquarian.

Thursday, November 28, 2002

last one for today:

in milan, every woman had extremely pointy shoes. ones that go on far past your foot ends, and most of them curl up at the tip. it seems like everyone wishes they were an elf there. ugly. as. hell. but apparently high fashion.

if i were them i'd be scared of getting them caught at the top of the escalators.
bratislava in a nutshell:
- mcdonald's twice. i feel terrible. but it was the only thing nearby the embassy, cheapish, and open. if we don't count the "cafes" that only served alcohol, and were quite full of patrons for 9am. which is a shame, because one had the goshdurned cutest kitten sitting the front window playing with dust in the air. but i wanted food, not vodka. so sad.
- i now have a slip of paper with a phone that i am to call to find out when to pick up my visa. finally!
- nearly bought leather fuckme boots. should have. but realised the left leg's skinnier than the right, and didn't realise that that's easily fixable through excercise. at the time, thought it just looked silly wearing them. doh. but i will find my fuckme boots eventually.
- oh yeah, mcdonalds in bratislava doesn't have egg mcmuffins. makes me wonder if they exist in the czech republic. hmm.
- michal is wonderful. wants to meet brent when he comes out here in the spring, just to tell him about my many czech boyfriends, and the three days that i never left the hotel room in bratislava after the bellboy brought me my bags.
- felt like winter. felt very very nice.
- everyone knew i was an english speaker the second i opened my mouth. even though i was trying so hard to speak czech. which they do understand there. but they always answered me in impeccable english.
- it's embarrassing being an english-speaker.

but at least i (nearly) have my visa. finally.

Wednesday, November 27, 2002

i keep having dreams about people dying. never me. other people. sometimes i know it's going to happen before it does, sometimes it doesn't. last night it involved cancer, and me knowing that my mother was going to die even though she didn't. that came after the dream with the gunshots. because that's how most people have been dying lately.

the funniest one was where my only protection was the medical students dressed in military gear. specifically poonam and aqil. if you knew them, you'd understand how amusing the image is.

still. what does death mean in dreams? when you're not dying, but you watch bullets rip through someone in exquisite detail? usually people you don't know personally, but even so. any thoughts?
You will live in Mansion.
You will drive a blue vw bug.
You will marry brentos and have 12 kids.
You will be a musician in london.

i love mash...

Tuesday, November 26, 2002

spent an extra night in milan accidentally. it wasn't planned. wasn't wanted either. i have to say i'm generally unhappy with the milan-ese.

but more on that later.

for now, home for a day, going to bratislava for my visa tomorrow, and THEN recuperation from the vacation.


Friday, November 22, 2002

good: i'm in lagos, portugal!!!
bad: my shoes are still wet from yesterday.
good: my sandals are still wet from playing in the ocean all day and spending the day at the beach. i have a tan.
bad: i feel sticky.
good: watching waves.
bad: watching waves suddenly be enormous and go right up to where my jacket's lying out on the beach, holding my camera and my cell phone.
good: waves being smart enough to stop JUST before touching my camera. with the smallest margin of space imaginable. really lucky.
bad: waves still sucking enough to attack my cell phone. it's toast. going cellphone shopping when i'm back in prague.
good: met a friendly british fellow who gave me lunch with andorran cheese and good beer.
bad: .....
good: did i mention i'm in portugal?

other than this cellphone issue, things are grand. and maybe, just maybe, if it dries out, maybe it'll work. won't it?

off to eat a 4 euro meal. british dude said that if he sees me later, which he prolly will, considering what a small town this is, he'll buy me a drink. i like british guy.

Tuesday, November 19, 2002

portugal is absolutely amazing. as if there was going to be any doubt. although this accidental finding of a free internet place (and really really cheap food!) is a bonus. seeing groups of girls running around in ballet tights and tutus is of amusement as well. also just spent the past twenty minutes reading a portuguese newspaper and understanding it (for the most part - they like the new aimee mann, they don't seem to have big issues with justin timberlake's solo album, apocalypsos, and sigur ros coming to town in march).

i can't even begin to describe how wonderful it is to be on an ocean again, smelling the breeze, hearing the waves, feeling the salt all over my skin... i didn't actually realise how much i'd missed it until now. anyways, spending a day in evora, then heading south to the algarve. yaaaay more coast.

for now. hungry. must be up early to take more pictures (6 rolls done thus far). hope everyone else is doing well.

Wednesday, November 13, 2002

oh yeah! forgot to mention. no NATO summit for sarah. going to portugal early thursday morning.
downside: going with gun-totin' american. but i can handle him. even if i appear to be one of the few who can, which is what really perturbs me. having people continuously say sorry when they hear i'm going with him is starting to worry me. ah well. we already have an agreement not to take offense when one of us ditches the other.
upside!: current temperatures are a balmy mid/high-teens in lisbon, all the way up to 30 degrees celsius on the south coast (sagres)!

i'm gonna have a dandy week.

Tuesday, November 12, 2002


yesterday in class we went to a monastery and wandering around inside for awhile, looking at frescos and the layout and all that exciting stuff. interesting place. outside one of the sanctuaries was a little pool of holy water. i had to dip my fingers in it. (wouldn't you?) and once i had and my fingers were wet, i had to do the cross over my forehead/chest. (quickly and subtly, when no one was looking.) i don't know why. i was never trained to do it. i'm not catholic, whatever i do believe, and lutherans don't do that. i've only ever touched holy water two or three times in my life, when we went to services with arielle as kids. but some part of me couldn't just wipe it off or let it dry without doing anything with it first. it just seemed wrong not to.
saturday wasn't going to be all that exciting. the hike we were supposed to go on was cancelled. tagged along to look at apartments with people. talking to alister, he mentioned someplace with "mountains" at the end of a tram line. seeing as the weather had suddenly turned glorious, i made him take me there. but just before we headed off from the cafe, this girl with a beautiful coat (i'd seen her when she ordered her food earlier) came over and asked if she'd heard one of us say that we were canadian. her name's tegan, she's from vancouver, just travelling around for a month or two, hated where she was staying and wanted to find somewhere else for when she got back from poland. ended up inviting her to stay in the kolej. invited her to go hiking as well, and she came along, and it was so much fun. we mocked alister for calling the glorified hills mountains. she's graduated from art school, does printmaking. reminds me so much of the inkpen twins combined.

and then on sunday night she said she couldn't stand it, could she stay over just one night before she left. so last night she hung out with the bunch of us, and all was good.

and i'm still amused by the fact that together we were tegan & sara(h). and she's gonna stay at the kolej another week at the beginning of december. and it was just nice to pretend that i'd had a friend from home come out and visit me. because so many other people have had visitors and i won't have anyone until next semester, if i'm lucky. but even though it wasn't planned, i got a friend afterall!

tegan's awesome. for more than just her name and her coat. and now i have someone else i'll have to see when i go home over christmas. doh.
happy birthday david, whose page doesn't even work today. broken links are my birthday present to you!!!

oh, and i still have cookies for you.

(was the birthday today or yesterday?)
i have a Very Important Email sitting and waiting to be sent, and yet i'm still not doing it. not sure why. i think because then the ball's out of my court once again. and i'm still waiting for advice from others who don't appear to be around. when really, it makes no difference what they'd say, i'm sure, because i've said what i need to say, i think. but if you hold everything up on your side, sometimes you can pretend that things are at a standstill and you can still imagine the ideal outcome. or feel important, because everything still rests on you.

it's fun to be delusional sometimes.

Friday, November 08, 2002

yesterday had an odd feel. it was one of those good days that's good but taken with great ambivilence in the way you see things and most of all in the way you talk about things. discussing the qualities of hatred and bonding over the mutual hatred of one person here meritted as much emotion as planning a trip or looking for boots or wishing someone a happy birthday. unfortunately this also meant that a great deal of what i said was taken with offense. i didn't think i was being nearly that sarcastic, but perhaps i was.

and then sarah confronted a few more issues she has with drinking. no, i wasn't drinking. no, it wasn't the drunken person who brought them up. it was the other people around who did. but these things are being resolved.

and then today not much happened. although apparently there are some who are surprised that my entire personal life isn't completely reflected on this page. there's a surprise, to be sure.

afterwards, i amazed meself eating an entire bar of chocolate in three minutes. the big square ones that you break into smaller pieces and eat over time. i was supposed to share it. guess i was a little more angry than i realised.

tonight, tomato soup, bread of the gods, veggie cream cheese, and milk that almost tastes like milk back in canada.

or maybe i'll just make hot chocolate.

oh i do so lead an exciting life!

Thursday, November 07, 2002

[excuse the idiocy and general empty-mindedness of this entry. i did, so can you.]


today i learned that i'm too skinny for fuck-me boots. this upsets me greatly.

today god is laughing at me.

on the plus side, the fact that i am too skinny for fuck-me boots, along with my ability to catch a leghair in the zipper while trying them on (because no, i'm not shaving my legs these days, it's cold here, i need all the body heat i can garner. that, and i really can't be bothered..) was enough to cheer maggie up and get her out of a bad mood. granted, it's because she can mock me for these things, but it's a worthwhile sacrifice, don't you think?

no, i don't think so either.

today everyone is laughing at me.


jordan'll cost $500cdn to visit. portugal's only $250 though. hmm....

Wednesday, November 06, 2002

NATO conferences are to be held in prague later this month. initially, classes were supposed to continue on. now, the rumour is that they'll be cancelled. everyone is pretty much expecting violent riots and endless terror, it seems. which is amusing to me, because the events that have happened in vancouver in the past have never seemed to be that big a deal. so i'm wondering how much of it is people expecting the worst and how much of it is actually plausible.

at any rate. originally, i was going to be here. and that was a thrill, because if it is supposed to be that exciting, then i certainly would want to be there taking pictures. however, if we have the time off, it would almost seem a shame not to use it to explore someone else. (like jordan!) so now i don't know what to do. if i stay, it will most certainly be dull and uneventful. and if i go, the world will end and i'll have missed it all.

what to do...?
amber's a mommy now. ethan seth p___. so strange. but i'm happy for the new parents. and i'm a fan of his name, as well. {g}

a belated happy new year to anyone celebrating the festival of lights last night. went out for excellent indian food with a bunch of the med students. i've realised how much i miss indian food. and sushi. when i get home, i don't care that it'll be christmas day and that i should be going home for christmas dinner, i don't care that most restaurants prolly won't even be open, i am going to have some sushi as soon as i get off the plane.

went to terezin on saturday. my first time going to anything like that - haven't done the poland/aushwitz trip yet - but the weather was rather suiting. after the decent and even sunny weather we'd had during the week, saturday was wet and windy and drizzly and dreary and miserable. it did get a little better by the afternoon, though. at any rate, very sobering. interesting to hear the stories that our guide (one of the history profs) had - he had a lot of them. strange seeing everything, though. felt terribly distanced from what had happened there in the past. terezin wasn't a concentration camp, it was the town that hitler gave "the vermin" (what a sweetie) in the red cross' eyes, which in reality was basically a holding point for people before they were shipped onwards to poland or wherever. people still died there, and regardless, it was not a happy place for anyone staying there, and most people who did go there died in the end anyways. very strange walking around the place, though. somewhat undecided as to what i think about places like that being preserved. places, plural. one, i might understand. multiple.. i'm just not sure.

always indecisive, that's me.

and in general, it has been a sit-around-and-do-nothing time. listen to music. read a little. think about lots of things and nothing at the same time. have strange dreams. get vaguely sick and hope that it doesn't linger on too long because i've already been sick once so far.

oh, last night while we were waiting for the tram, there was snow mixed in with the rain. i did little happy dances. everyone else ignored me.

yay! snow!

Friday, November 01, 2002

today's the day that caitlin and michael are getting married in scotland!

so a happy wedding day to the both of them.
computer seems to work fine. hurrah. maybe it's just posessed.

Thursday, October 31, 2002

grand ol' day so far:

1. woke up at 6:30 for no reason. still tired but can't sleep anymore.
2. laptop has apparently died again. dunno details yet, but i'm not sure whether the fact that it sounds like the same problem is a good thing or not.
3. my brother has apparently moved into my room. no one has bothered mentioning this to me. if i had moved out, this might not have been a big deal. but i didn't, stuff was left in a mess there because it's MY room, and now he's apparently taking it over.

not a happy camper today.

Wednesday, October 30, 2002

in czech, any of "ano", "yo", and "no" can mean yes. no is "ne".

when i go home i will have the chance to make sincere use of the phrase, "and by 'no' i mean 'yes'!"

conversations with daniel make me happy.
1. i would love some oatmeal.
2. more than that, i would love some snow porridge. but i cannot find the stuff you use to make it in Tesco.
3. Tesco is evil.
4. i don't even know where Tesco is originally from.
5. oddly, i don't really care.
6. tomorrow i have a big czech exam.
7. i know precious little czech.
8. matt will prolly do better than i will.
9. this is a sad sorry state of affairs.
10. so i will sit and listen to more music on epitonic some more, because i am in desperate need of new music.
11. i still want oatmeal.
12. or messages.*
13. or snow porridge.

* short ones. otherwise i don't get the entire thing... sadly...

Tuesday, October 29, 2002

romania was awesome. mountains. beautiful countryside. horse-drawn wagons everywhere for normal transportation. lots of stray dogs. kittens falling asleep in my lap in the park. hiking the bucegi mountains. seeing bran castle and the fortress in rasnov. seeing vlad tepes' birthplace in sighisoara, which is still an awesome name. one day i will name a character sighi soara.* this entails actually writing a story, but it could happen. lots of friendly romanians, as always. absolutely no troubles whatsoever. stag stew. polenta. amazing pastries. seeing Resident Evil (Experiment Fatal!!) with romanian subtitles and understanding the subtitles more than the actual spoken english. i suppose if the entire audience is following the action through the written word, the actual sound quality isn't as important. not that it mattered. because the script seemed so very incredibly amazing. but milla jovovich was eye candy enough onscreen. 19 hour train rides there and back. giggle fits all the way home. suave hungarian guys telling us how our blue tongues (popsicles) were the same colour as our eyes. ooh it made my heart go pitter patter. ancient buildings. incredible graveyards. no vampires. feeling conspicuous with blonde hair and a nose ring. seeing my first european snow. walking down residential roads watching two cows saunter down the road, no one else around.

it might be an idea to start writing papers soon, me being in school at the moment and all...

* say: "siggi shwara"

Thursday, October 24, 2002

Air Canada: Dec 25, Lv Hamburg 10.20 am, arrive Van 2.10
Return Jan8, leave Vancouver 2.30 pm, arrive Hamburg, 1.35 pm


Wednesday, October 23, 2002

going to romania tonight with catherine and jordan, the wisconsinite that makes me think of dave nelson. transylvania and vampires and gypsies and rustic life... here's hoping we don't die. must dash off to buy train tickets now. have a good weekend.

Tuesday, October 22, 2002

it should be stated publically that brent is awesome.

so there we go.

Monday, October 21, 2002

number 38 is no longer applicable. number 40 appears not to be true in the czech republic. i'm certain that it will still be the case when i get back to vancouver, though. but it was a mostly pleasant experience. what wasn't is being dealt with. and no, not talking about hangovers. what, you think i'd be susceptible to those? of course not! i'm amazing.

don't worry, number 39 is still fully in effect.

had a field trip out towards the sudetenland yesterday. it was absolutely wonderful to be outside the city, hiking up rocks and hills and forging our own paths through the woods in cold, sunny weather surrounded by red and golden leaves. saw rabbits and deer and befriended kittens who tried to follow me home. explored the sites of long-gone castles and churches, found crazy statues that had been left behind, picked apples off the trees and ate them. i'm a big fan of fruit trees growing everywhere and the apples and pears free for the picking. a very big fan.

and today i have to remember that i'm in school, as i have a paper due this afternoon that i still haven't started. good times....

Friday, October 18, 2002

oh, and yesterday my sister turned 21. an age which is of no importance, really. at least, not in bc. but now she can drink legally in the states as well. i know she's thrilled.
i wish there were some exciting reason for the lack of entries over the past week but there isn't.

tonight's sanni's birthday and i should be going out to celebrate it with her. and i have to, because she'd be upset if i didn't. and i do want to. but today i also paid for the repairs on my computer and it cost a bit (read: prolly too much) and even if it does work now and in the long run i'll save the money if i can make long distance calls through it whenever we get the internet in the dorms, at the moment i'm still painfully aware of how much it cost and i really do not want to spend a lot of money at the moment.

and tomorrow night i'm going to see Andalusion Dog who i would have seen for their name alone, though the descriptions i've heard sound rather intriguing. and no, i haven't listened to the clips on their page, so i could still be setting meself up for disappointment, but i suppose that's what i get for travelling to computer labs without headphones. for some reason i haven't developed the habit of walking around prague with my discman. i'm not sure why. a lot of the americans never leave home without it. before i came here, i wouldn't have either. but somehow it seemed wrong and/or foolish to stand in the tram or wander around the old town square without hearing everything going on around me. and i just got used to living without music. which is prolly a good thing, because there's still plenty going on around me. before i left home i really wanted to go around with a recorder and just get certain sounds on tape to keep with me. not necessarily because i would miss them (some of them were sounds i'd only heard once). but just to play with, maybe. and now i'm wishing i had one with me out here as well. i still love the fact that you can hear the military school band across the street practicing every morning at 8am sharp. i like listening to the trumpet warming up. i don't know why, but i do.

at any rate. here's what you've missed in my lack of posting:
- the fact that the clouds here often make it look like there's nothing above you. they're just white. no colour, no texture, just white. it's almost creepy.
- my belief that they have people chained in a room where they're forced to invent strange and bizarre flavour sensations for yogourt. like chocolate coconut. or chocolate cherry. or hazelnut vanilla. which also begs the question, why did hazelnut never really catch on in N America? why is it a european flavour? i've always loved it, i just didn't know it was so big out here, considering how rare it is back home.
- frustrations over duelling parents (one offering me a ticket home for christmas, the other trying desperately to convince me to stay out here, partially because of the great experience but largely because they can't offer me the same thing themselves and they don't want me taking the other parent up on the offer).
- the humour and/or annoyance to be found in watching drunk people.
- czech guys can't dance.
- where to go next week (for a week!): hungary & more or croatia?
- random bouts of depression, self-doubt, missing people, and strange dreams that come with.
- spontaneous road trip with med students to southern czech republic. nothing much happened. saw gigantic chemical towers that seemed to be out of a book. listened to indian wedding music. i think i need a copy of the tape.
- been reading Nietzsche. think it's having an effect on me?

that's about it. see? nothing exciting at all, really. it hasn't been a bad week per se, but nothing really grand either. and i either need to post more or think more about what i'm writing, because this sounds far too dull. no wit, no flair, nothing good in the writing.

i want to read Good Omens. or Where The Wild Things Are. or Winnie The Pooh.

but i can't right now.

Thursday, October 10, 2002

i forgot to mention that yesterday was John Lennon's birthday. i remembered in classes - all my notebooks have that fact written across the top margin. so a belated happy john lennon day.
my laptop's currently broken. dunno what's wrong but it goes to an error screen before windows even starts loading. just sms'd michal to ask for advice and he sent me someone's number. "the only thing is that he doesn't speak english very well, but he has to learn. so call him and speak slowly and tell him you're a friend of mine. i consider it punishment for him."

michal's awesome. {g}

message from a person who shall remain nameless, in order to preserve their dignity:

"I just forgot what year it was. Had to look in my agenda. I'm obviously insane. Thank god it's a 3 day weekend this week."

Wednesday, October 09, 2002

consulates and visas are the bane of my existence.

i thought things were going well. now that's not so much the case.

i'm really just disappointed that i won't be able to return to dresden this weekend. at least, it would be pointless to do so.

consulates aren't into returning emails either.

because of that, they're terribly conducive to drivel. i am so terribly amused by what i am writing right now. sean connery, boredom, frustration, the missing of friends, and enless amusement in the little things can be a frightening combination.

i also just read the excerpt of jenn pardilla's novel from last year's nanowrimo. wow. i am inspired. can we please read the rest? please oh please? nothing would make me happier.

well, except maybe sean connery.


i'm frightening meself now. i should stop.

Tuesday, October 08, 2002

yes. being 23 is definately good. and now more extremely good news, though i dare not jinx it by mentioning it here quite yet.

yesterday the architecture class took a romantic walk through the escape route for the czech presidents, should tragedy ever befall prague. it really was quite lovely. sanni, marcia, and i continuously commented on the romance of it all. the oh-so-blue-from-chemical-waste pond, the rusted lampposts, the lovely couples everywhere, the golden leaves, the sunshine... i gave sanni a maple leaf. it was so romantic. sanni threw the remnants of the apples we'd eaten at marcia. it was so romantic. we found fruit all around because of the trees all over. it was so romantic. we held hands. it was so romantic. some of the other students looked at us strangely. it was so romantic. sanni and i plan on going back there again. it was so romantic. it's a good place to know for when visitors come, though. it was so romantic.

i will most likely be unable to concentrate on anything today. i didn't really feel like working on a paper anyways.
squall: pretensious noise
retisonic: rockin' good times. danny elfman on drums.
gogogo airheart: boogie on down. mick jagger moves abound. oh and our drunk friend from wyoming took the stage.
milemarker: not bad. loud. jealous of the keyboardist's hair. and voice.

feel somewhat guilty seeing american bands in the czech republic, but it was so worth going.

now dresden.

took off thursday, last minute as always. didn't have the time to book a hostel in advance, didn't think it would be a problem. turns out it had been a national holiday and all the beds were gone at the hostel, but if i hurried i might be able to get a bed at this other place on kaitzer str. got lost. saw a hedgehog. was about to sleep on the bench in the park (and would have been entirely fine with it - weather was warm, felt entirely safe there) but tried one more street. heard english so i went to ask if they knew where i was going. a couple in their 30s saying goodbye to their british friend. they didn't know where it was, but where was i from. studying in prague, but originally from canada. some muttering in german. would you like to stay at our place? so i got their daughter's bed and she slept with her parents. but not before they pulled out some nice wine and apples from their yard and told me stories of east germany and saxony and we all bonded. their house is from 1891. during communism there was no money to tear down the fancy older houses and rebuild them, which is why it still exists. ironic, really. she researches molecular biology. he's a civil engineer, specializes in bell tower reconstruction, and has therefore been in charge of fixing up almost all the old churches around saxony. their children go to the international school, and therefore speak nearly perfect english. the daughter is brilliant. eight years old and she doesn't have to try to learn anything. calm, quiet girl. her and i discussed tectonic plates and global warming and she understood everything. the next morning they drove me to where i had to go and invited me to stay the next night. which i did. and the next day played with the children and brought lotta into the old town with me to explore. much fun was had. much money was saved, as i didn't have to pay for board or food. when i left, i nearly missed the train because olaf and ellena insisted that i stay for coffee. they drove me to the station at the last minute, sending me off with the leftover apple cake, a bag of walnuts from their trees, some apples and some grapes, and told me that when i come back i'm more than welcome to stay with them again. lotta kept asking when i'd come back and insisted that i sleep in her bed again rather than pay for a room. and then hugs all around and i caught the train home.

so dresden was pretty swell. {g} didn't get my visa because i needed one more stamp. which i now have and i'll try again this weekend. that alone should have made me hate dresden, but i really couldn't be upset in the least. i promised lotta i'd be back soon and i wouldn't want to go back on my word.

it's good. i don't like going somewhere and being a visitor. i like going and living there. and this weekend i most definately lived there rather than being a tourist there. screw castles and museums, i got to live with the people and find the cool parks and play on nifty german park toys (the giant top is my favourite one. why don't we have dangerous park toys in canada? we really are missing out...) and still found out a bunch of quirky tales of the city's history that i wouldn't have known if i hadn't met olaf and ellena.

oh, and i rode a scooter for the first time. i can now understand their popularity at home. they're actually quite fun.

so really, nothing had to happen for my birthday to get better, as the rest of the weekend had already been awesome. but then it did just get better in the most mundane of ways. which really is the best way possible.

and i still have another two birthdays to look forward to this year! {g}

Monday, October 07, 2002

about to be late for class. argh. but thank you to one and to all for the birthday wishes. they made my day.

it was possibly the bestest birthday i've ever had. for oh so many reasons.

weather was dandy. ended up in dresden over the weekend. no room at the hostel. extreme luck followed. it was like jesus and the inn. except that we just drank wine, rather than making it from water. turns out i have friends here in prague. going out with a soon-to-be supa-fly music producer. yes, supa-fly. never said it before, it's high time i start. the amusement factor alone does it. got phonecalls from other parts of germany. got my hand scratched up by gucci the cat because he was so very happy to play with me. and then to top it off, someone bought me cheesecake.

elaborations to follow. for now, gonna be late for class.

Tuesday, October 01, 2002

i do so want to visit sweden while i'm here, despite the fact that i know it will cost an arm and a leg.

romania looks like fun too.

as does egypt. and jordan. and turkey.

lonely planet online is a wonderful thing.

just makes decisions all the harder. why does money have to be an issue?
i have no idea whatsoever where to go this weekend. dresden. bratislava. vienna. krakow. none of the above. i'm at a loss due to my indecision. please, someone, tell me where to go. if i can just go one place and start it all, everything else will follow. so please. pity me. send me away.*

there are people planning a trip to egypt in the coming months. i really need to figure out how much money i actually have to travel with.

otherwise: yesterday we explored the sewers of prague during my architecture class. found a room which was once used as a hideout in case of a siege, before it was borrowed by satanist cults. and then we stopped by jan svankmajer's house. he lives nearby the gallery of surrealism. it cannot be a coincidence. later, i got to see another film of his, Conspirators of Pleasure. unfortunately, The Dumb Americans (as opposed to The Cool Americans) went on afterwards about how terrible it was, how anything can be said to be art these days. even a couple who, before the film began, loudly exclaimed that they had seen his house today. because that made them cooler, somehow. i'm really getting frustrated with the superficiality of a number of them. heathens. all of them.**

oh, and i've befriended a fellow from wisconsin. he makes me think of dave nelson. i haven't told him that yet, and i don't think he's a secret canadian. but his home still amuses me. hopefully he will never read this.

* i am quite aware of how lucky i am to be here, never let it be thought that i'm just a spoiled, whiny, brat. i'm still an indecisive brat, at least, and therein lies my problem. just, y'know, covering my ass here...
** "them", of course, refers to the Dumb Americans. not the Cool Americans. just covering my ass here too...

Sunday, September 29, 2002

OH MY GOD i can't believe that i'm friends with a SAMMY HAGAR lover.


yesterday was my first birthday. it involved photography, monks, nuns, castles, accordians, candles, getting lost (still), dutch people, music, tomato soup, and women with cakes and flowers on trams.

alas, the cake was not for me. but the story that i told meself in my mind was so very beautiful that i could forgive her. i'm sure she had a lovely time last night.

yesterday was also a national holiday. which was just like any other day, except that the trams had czech flags waving at the front of them. and there were a few fireworks after it got dark.

but i figured that the fireworks were to celebrate my special day, anyways.

hope everyone else's unbirthday was lovely as well.

today: music festival at the castle. bonding time with med students. or just their cat, one of the two. possibly more tomato soup.

it's a thrill a minute here in prague...

Thursday, September 26, 2002

why can't more people be online when i am? as in, anyone? it's quite strange being restricted to online time by the hours of the computer lab at school. hopefully there will be access in the dorms soon. then i can go online when other people are awake in the world. but i do so miss chatting with people instead of doing homework.

oh, tragedy! my life is so hard..

i do, however, find great pleasure in the fact that i will be brought back to many a home around the entire world, through the magic of tourist photography. i have most certainly made my way into thousands of pictures at this point, and i will be forever be That Girl In The Background, enshrined in someone's prized photo collection hidden under their coffee table, only brought out to bore unsuspecting guests as they sit and sip tea (earl grey, chai, or green, depends on what part of the world, i suppose), catching up on the past few months of their lives out of duty and habit rather than actual desire. how very exciting.

(i suppose i could also become angry that so many people are stealing a little bit of my soul, i suppose. but i never had much of one to begin with, so i haven't really noticed the loss too much.)
"Seek moderation in all things" is usually a sound principle, but in the coming weeks it won't be for you Libras. You'll have a cosmic mandate to replace it with "More is always better" or "Only too much is enough." It'll be your sacred duty to pursue extravagance that might be self-indulgent at any other time. I'll even go so far as to say that it will be a sin for you not to stir up as many fun exploits and joyous liberations as possible. That's why I suggest that you tell four different people four different dates for the anniversary of your coming into the world -- say September 28, October 4, October 11, and October 18. Then throw yourself a birthday party on each of those days.

i'm a huge fan of this horoscope. and i fully intend to follow its suggestion. presents and well-wishes are gleefully accepted for all four dates (plus the official date, october 6th), at this address or on this telephone. also: if anyone has any suggestions as to where to spend my birthday (as in, which country nearby the czech republic), give me a shout.

Wednesday, September 25, 2002

i've met a few displaced americans (no displaced canadians yet) who've been here a long time, and the one thing they all have in common is that they tend to reach a point where they start to become a little bitter towards the world and complain that they've started to pick up on the czech attitudes towards life. i'm not entirely certain what they mean, but i have a vague understanding. at any rate. despite the fact that there are some terribly wonderfully friendly czech people that i've met out here, yesterday i had my fill of the bitter czechs. everyone i spoke to was curt and/or downright rude when i was trying my best to speak their language anyways. maybe it's because i was extremely sick. maybe it's because my grasp of the language is still terrible and i know that, so i tend to mumble a bit more. but every time i left them behind i was busy cursing them and their family.

but then marcia and i went to heaven and back last night (by way of orchestras, chopin, rachmaninov, and concertos), so all was well. i had tingles all over.

and the friendly maids at the dorm today tried their best to tell me to drink some lemon (citron) tea (caj) and honey (med? can't recall now) to get better. so not every czech person's an asshole.

just the people working at the markets.

Tuesday, September 24, 2002

sick as a dog.

cold wind outside.

probably skipping class tonight. i should be doing a presentation, and i don't think i'd be able to do that anyways. thursday, it shall be!

- saw lots of bones and lots of ruins. quite fascinating.
- discovered that Archduke Franz-Ferdinand had a personality when we realised we were exploring his old castle.
- saw a huge collection weapons and armour. again, quite fascinating.
- played with children.
- caught a cold that's not been made better by sitting up late chatting with people.

was going to upload photos today, then realised that i can't seem to make ftp work properly here. any advice is welcome.

for now:
off to make soup.
my sister just posted something on her page, but i'm not sure if her address is a secret still or not, so rather than link to it, i'll just copy and repost. she's also posted a few recipes for me, as i've been sick in bed for the past 24 hours. at least now i have soup recipes, just in time for the rest of the roommates to get ill. mmmmm potato leek soup. however. i prolly even posted this on my page at one point, but it still makes me laugh. so. rebecca writes:

Sep 23, 2002
bogart the black

Because I am an icq history junkie, and because I finished my paper a few minutes early, I was reading past correspondances between my sister and myself. I laughed so hard I thought I'd share the conversation fromt he night of February 10/02:

whither: so daniel was black humphrey bogart tonight..

Specca: come again?

whither: can't come again. can't read what i wrote.

Specca: explain black humphrey bogart. My interest has been captured. I am intrigued.

whither: oh. wearing his black coat and my black fedora. and then he walked funny. and proclaimed that he was black humphrey bogart. and he fought aliens. and then when he was looking through my calendar of movies, he got to the maltese falcon, he read out "...with black humphrey bogart as sam spade, fighting aliens and saving the world..."
S:"it doesn't say that."
D:"no, but it should. i know there's a movie with black humphrey bogart out there somewhere!"

oh daniel, how i miss thee...

Saturday, September 21, 2002

wait, i never mentioned sean connery on here at all, did i. huh. ah well. {g}
so this is what was filming the other day. (thank you mark!) i could post pictures, but i didn't remember to save them to a floppy disk before i left the house today. what a shame.

last night wendy, sanni and i went for a bbq at michal's house with his family. and they are the nicest, friendliest, sweetest people i have met out here. they have two children, both blonde and blue-eyed and super hyper with guests around and quite shy about speaking english even if they know some. michal told us that we had to try some "typical czech drinks". both pretty strong. starting to get used to one, as i'd tried it before when our czech teacher got our class a round of shots on our last day. (i'd spell it if i could remember what it's called. bechrovka?) at any rate. after the burning sensation left my mouth, they weren't all that bad. {g} (those AND a glass of wine and i wasn't affected in the least. nor did i gag. yay me! /dork) at any rate, when it got late they still wanted us to stay awhile, but we had to leave. but not before it was decided that they were going to take the three of us outside prague on sunday to explore some other part of the czech republic. which is wonderful because we get out of the city and don't have to worry about busses or figuring it all out, and we get to go with czech people rather than being fullblown tourists, and we get to go with children which always makes it fun, and life is good. we're all really looking forward to this.

tomorrow we're going to explore kutna hora (both the town and the ossuary) with the school group. very excited about that.

tonight we're seeing carmen at the national theatre. we're paying $2 canadian to see it. almost had to pay $4, but fortunately the ISIC card gets us a discount. yeah, we're being spoilt. {g}

yesterday i got a pair for good shoes for super-cheap. sanni was supposed to buy things, not me. after all that she didn't even end up buying her shoes, either. did you know that Bata is actually a czech store, and the founder of the company emigrated to canada at some point? which explains why wendy and i weren't fazed to see Bata all over while the americans gushed about it. so very strange.

my only complaint about things is that i also found out that we actually do have neighbours last night, only because they like to watch annoying east indian sitcoms rather loudly at 2am and don't answer the door when you knock to ask them to turn it down. fortunately blair had a pair of earplugs that actually let me sleep in this morning as well.

so life isn't exciting at the moment, if a highlight is getting earplugs from a roommate. but it's fun, so that's good enough for the moment. {g}

Friday, September 20, 2002

so strange. i'm sitting in the computer lab at the school, and there's a fellow in the corner whose screen faces me as well, and he's casually looking through porn site ads. and keeping them on the screen, rather than closing the windows. looks like he's chatting with someone about them all as well. it's as though he's trying to find the perfect site, not at all concerned about the fact that anyone can see the screen.

somehow i don't think that would ever happen in the SFU computer labs... {g}

Thursday, September 19, 2002

after reading through tavie's, nicole's and serra's lists, i have to agree - they're actually interesting to read. won't say that much about mine, but i have the time so here we go.

100 things about sarah:
1. i was born in new westminster, bc, a suburb of vancouver.
2. i've lived in two different houses, roughly five blocks away from each other. i still like the older house better.
3. no, i lie. at the moment i live in prague, out in the czech republic. i've actually started calling the dorms "home" these days without thinking.
4. currently, my city is better than your city.
5. the only other place i have ever referred to as "home" offhand is brent's place, and i didn't even realise i was doing it.
6. my favourite thing about our old house was the hazelnut tree in the front yard.
7. when i was six i slipped off the monkey bars and broke my arm (in three places, shattering my wrist and elbow). since then i've never been much of a fan of the monkey bars.
8. but for some reason i loved the bar in gymnastics for a long while.
9. during my last year in gymnastics, i really started to like the beam and the floor, though.
10. i quit gymnastics technically because i had bad knees, but really because i was too apathetic to work to become more flexible.
11. i quit piano at the grade 10 level because i just wasn't into that whole practicing thing.
12. i plan on going back to get my grade 10 and ARCT when i get back to canada.
13. i can sight-read music relatively well. but i always wished that i could improvise or actually play off the top of my head. that's something i just can't do.
14. i'm the oldest of four children.
15. when we were younger, david was always my favourite brother. daniel somehow didn't count in my mind because he was too young. but i loved him anyways.
16. my sister and i never really got along until she was in high school. coincidentally, we had aussie friends out here that year who did things with the both of us. i think the two might be related. now we get along most of the time.
17. my sister can be one of the coolest people in the world. so can my little brother. god, we're an amazing family.
18. i met my my best friend when i was in grade eight. we got to know each other more in grade nine. the first time she invited me over to her house for just the two of us to hang out, i was surprised to find out that no one else was coming over.
19. according to some astrological book i was reading one day, her and i could have a fantastic sex life, although the actual relationship could be strained at times due to neither of us wanting to rock the boat and actually point out any problems. too bad we're not sleeping together.
20. while i still scoff at astrology, i read my horoscope regularly, and have to admit that i'm very much a libra.
21. i always felt a fair bit of snobbery in being a libra.
22. i also contend that early-october is the best time of year. particularly for birthdays. the air is cooler but it's usually still sunny, there's leaves all around, a bit of frost in the mornings, it's gorgeous.
23. i never had names for my toys unless they were given to me with them. despite that fact, if someone asked their name i'd make one up for them. i'd just never remember it.
24. i think that keeping people nameless and faceless can be one of the most dehumanizing and insulting things people can do.
25. despite that, i think that too much is attributed to surface attributes, such as names and appearances.
26. i find it hard to have a concrete opinion about many things. i always see merit to both sides. for this reason i often appear rather wishy washy. really, i'm too busy contemplating the opinions presented to me.
27. that, and i also don't want to look like a fool when i know everyone else is smarter than i am, so best keep my mouth shut.
28. i always mock the stupid people in my head, though.
29. i know they're not all like it, but i cannot stand Stupid Americans. and i am surrounded by far too many of them these days.
30. but i have to admit that i actually like some of the said Stupid Americans anyways.
31. i am so pathetically dependent on email, text messages, and phone conversations that i embarass meself sometimes.
32. though if someone claims to be a bigger internet junkie (and is not a complete computer nerd) i'm always quick to prove that i am the bigger junkie.
33. i can forget to eat for prolonged periods of time. after awhile you just stop noticing the hunger pains.
34. it is for this reason that i refuse to go on a fast. my eating abilities would be put way too far out of whack.
35. i don't like taking medicine. the idea of foreign chemicals racing through my bloodstream frightens me.
36. and yet i eat skittles all the time.
37. ironically, i also choose the organic food over the crappy copies, and the natural sugar-free toothpaste over any general drugstore kind.
38. i have never been drunk. largely out of stubbornness.
39. i feel like a bit of a weirdo in prague, where beer flows freely at all hours of the day.
40. beer makes me gag and gives me headaches, though. i think i'm allergic to it. so i feel i have an excuse not to be drinking it with everyone else.
41. my current boyfriend is the only one i've ever had. i never really wanted one before. didn't plan on having one now. was simultaneously somewhat embarassed and somewhat proud of being an oddball in never having one. (coincidentally, he's a taurus just like jodi...)
42. i may have just thrown all that out of whack, however. none of my real talents are actually useful. update: things are dandy.
43. i want to be artsy and eclectic. i rarely think i am, however.
44. i'm rather attached to the idea of me being a photographer, however.
45. i'm thinking of going to school for photography and art in general after i finish this degree. i don't really know that it would achieve anything though. i'm still no artist.
46. i don't consider meself to be a writer either. that was always someone else's bag. i still want to write a novel sometime, despite its guaranteed suckiness.
47. i was always quite proud that i was the best in everything in elementary school.
48. when i was in grade three the other SAC and i had a drawing contest so that we could prove for once and for all who was the better drawer. i called foul when the requirements were to draw the best copy of Garfield. i didn't do cartoons and i definately didn't draw copies of actual pictures. the issue was never really resolved.
49. my middle name is annemarie, btw. and my last is caufield.
50. caufield, as in a typo'd version of the name descendent of irish royalty. we're peasants and i love it. you know we had more fun.
51. the aunt who married my father's brother wants to change the spelling of our name to make it "Caulfield" once again because she wants to have the affinity to royalty. i'll reserve my opinions on that, lest they ever come across my page.
52. i only have three cousins, and i don't know any of them well. but i'm envious of the oldest one's talent. he's my age and he's good at everything he tries. alas, he's also a swell guy, so you can't hate him. damn.
53. i'm not sure if the other cousins are snobs or if our family (the kids at least) are snobs. but we've never become close.
54. i obsess over things too often and too easily.
55. usually they blow over. sometimes they don't.
56. my dream is to go to the airport with $20 and a passport in my pocket and take a plane to somewhere else in the world without having anything else planned.
57. i do pretty well by meself. i like not feeling like i rely on other people.
58. i do rely on other people, though. i need people around me, most of the time.
59. i miss brent's cat, nacho, more than i miss our cats at home.
60. i want to get a cat here in prague, but it would be mean to keep it locked in a dorm all the time.
61. if i were forced to choose between losing my sight and losing my hearing, i'd lose my sight. despite the fact that i love photography, film, reading, and art, i would go mad if i couldn't hear music anymore.
62. i'm rather proud of my musical tastes. having someone tell me they're strange or eclectic makes my day, even though i know people who have even better taste than i do.
63. the same goes with my clothing style.
64. when i was a kid, we only listened to CBC or QMFM - classical or easy listening. but mostly classical. i honestly didn't even think to see if there were any other stations on the radio until i was twelve.
65. i miss my radio show back home at CJSF.
66. i thrive in meeting new people. but at the same time i often have to be dragged out to group getogethers.
67. when i was a kid i wanted to be a traffic-director for construction sites just so that i could wear the orange hardhat.
68. i wanted to be a paleontologist for awhile. partially because i always got to explain what that word meant to the other kids when i said it. but mainly because i thought dinosaurs were cool.
69. i took a course on dinosaurs a few semesters back. it was a ton of fun. it didn't feel like real class. i don't think i learned all that much though, because i felt like i knew a lot of it already from when i was a kid. i didn't get the best mark in the world in that class, but i didn't care either. i was studying dinosaurs!
70. i have no idea what i'm going to be when i grow up.
71. i hate it when people ask you what you're going to do after university.
72. i especially hate it when my parents ask me that.
73. i could never really decide on a favourite colour, so a lot of the time i just followed what the popular consensus was.
74. when my sister and i were young, a lot of people mistook us for twins. i still don't know why. but my mom dressing us in matching clothes in different colours (i was red, rebecca was blue) probably didn't help.
75. i haven't watched television much since i spent a summer in alberta. we didn't have cable. i don't miss it that much, although i'm sorry that i don't get to see my favourite shows more often in reruns.
76. when i was fourteen a friend introduced jodi and i to monty python. oddly, we were the ones who became obsessed with it, and subsequently became the ones with odder taste. pam's still pretty strange though. but i think our sense of humour is better.
77. i can be a damn snob at times, and i know that i have absolutely no right to be one.
78. i have four piercings. i had to take out my tongue piercing, which i miss terribly. i love having them done, but i don't know where else to get one at this point.
79. i sorta want a tattoo. just something small. except that there's absolutely nothing i can think of that means enough to have it permanently drawn onto my skin.
80. i have a very small dent in my forehead from banging my head badly in the same place multiple times as a child.
81. i tend to injure the left side of my body more.
82. for nearly a year, i've had to deal with a pinched nerve in my left elbow. there's not much to be done about it. the outside of my hand and arms tend to feel asleep most of the time, though at times it worsens to become quite painful. don't know what to do about it though.
83. for some reason i always felt that having stitches was like having chicken pox: once you have it you won't have it again. this always worried me because i've never had stitches.
84. i'm often intimidated by cool people. and then i just become mute and piss meself off because i can't think of anything interesting to say.
85. when i die i will be killed by a passing car, due to my jaywalking.
86. i wish i knew more about everything.
87. i find it strange that people seem to mistake me for being older than i am a fair amount.
88. i find it even stranger that people seem to think i'm confident and sure of meself.
89. i find the sound of knuckles being cracked to be the worst sound in the entire world.
90. but i think that thunder rumbling (or an explosion that sounds similar) is one of the most beautiful sounds.
91. my dad has always wanted me to be a lawyer.
92. my mom has always wanted me to be a good lutheran.
93. i'm neither.
94. even so, i feel an affinity towards people when i find out that they're lutheran. but not lawyers.
95. i don't know what i believe in, to be completely honest.
96. i have been craving steamed green beans with spike and onions in 'em for a few days. i have fresh green beans sitting in the fridge at home. i've been too lazy to actually cook them.
97. i've grown used to not hearing english spoken around me anymore. i'm starting to really like it.
98. i want to explore every part of the world before i die. so long as i plan on coming back to vancouver, because i do rather like it there.
99. i wish that i could be more interesting.
100. i really just spent the time on this in hopes of being online long enough to catch someone else coming online on the other side of the world. it didn't happen.

Wednesday, September 18, 2002

if i had a super power, it would be the ability to completely fuck things up without even trying. or, even better, by going at it with good intentions, only to have everything blow up in my face.

oh wait, i'm already good at that one.

Tuesday, September 17, 2002

czech monks are quite the rabble-rousers, it seems. last night we went for a walk near the monastery near the dorms. the view, by the way, is spectacular. i'll have to put some of the photos on disk to upload them soom. but i digress. so we were right below the monastery at the sort of viewpoint, looking over the city. behind us, there was lively, old-time-jazzy piano music being played, and murmurs of party conversation floating out the window. at one point there was a snippet that actually made its way to where we were. there was an american woman's voice, and she was talking to a monk right at the window (we could see him, at least. for all i know the woman could have been a nun, i really don't know).

"if i ever see you in a tuxedo, i think i'd piss my pants laughing!"

and that was it. i have no clue what lead up to it, i have no clue what the hell was going on. we're starting to wonder if that's really a monastery or a brothel in disguise. they did sound like they were having quite a party. it's a shame we weren't invited.
addendum to the comment about too many fucking happy couples in prague:

it's not a reflection of my bitterness. well, not entirely at least. no, there actually are way too many of them. they all meander through all the streets, rapturously in love with each other, thinking that they're in the most romantic city they've ever been in, getting in the way, and generally being annoying.

though the annoyance is also partially because they're just so much more open with their affection out here. we walked through one garden yesterday where there were at least eight couples playing lick-the-tonsil. and usually i'm all for public displays of affection, because it's not quite as common out in vancouver. and i really don't care about people getting a room, actually.

okay, maybe i am just bitter. they still always get in the way when you're trying to actually walk somewhere in particular.

Monday, September 16, 2002

just so it's not a huge surprise, michelle has declared that she's getting me all pregnant on brent's ass. sounds like a plan to me.
i was going to delete things but i decided against it. because i know you care.
emails from parents sounding overly enthusiastic and asking about menial things in between telling you to send postcards and emails to people you don't need to be told to mail things to is really annoying.
didn't end up being seduced. plans changed. prolly had more fun anyways.

saturday was the Music Beats for Local Nazi music fest. Be Kind to your Local Nazis... (watch the clip if you can.) it was an anti-racism music fest with lots of good music and djs, lots of cheap food and drinks, a huge collection of punk sorts, and tons of fun. oh, and if you got there early enough, it was all free, so a group of us spent the day there. they had reggae, east indian electronica, drum'n'bass, so much stuff. unfortunately the headliner was Chumbawumba, so i can now say (with great dismay) that i have seen Chumbawumba live. we tried to leave that stage as quickly as possible, but still got to hear some of the music. to make up for it, however, there were firejugglers and people juggling glowing balls after dark. the smaller stages had the better music, really. one, the lounge, had big orange and white sofas spread all over, but was still playing lively music. in fact, saw the best group there. i think they were "Mersey", but i'm really not sure. at any rate, they had a dj spinning the music, all quite good in and of itself, but then there were two more people accompanying the music with sax and trumpet, adding a lot of jazziness to it all. it was awesome.

the whole thing took place on an island on the river, and during the day we hung out on the riverband. later on, after it got darker (and while sanni and i waited for chumbawumba to either leave the stage or fall victim to a freak electrical accident), the hammocks they'd set up were free, so the two of us took 'em over, just lay there watching the stars, listening to music coming out of the lounge tent, looking at all the trees flooded in purple, blue, orange, and yellow lights.

also: i have never seen so many dogs at a festival. i love it. same with children. they were everywhere. also: so many punky hairstyles. i need to do something to mine. i just can't decide what. maybe dreads. maybe just some strange cut. they were doing hair at the festival, but i couldn't decide then. piercing seems to be huge here as well - at least among the people i'd rather be around. bigger than in vancouver, i'd be tempted to say, though that could just be that they're just in larger groups out here.

anyways. this all sounded much better and more refined in my head before i got here. but i'm tired and i missed my first class because of traffic jams and i've been mildly depressed of late, so i really don't care. is there anything more to say? having access to my music once again is making things a little better. magnetic fields and quasi appear to be the picks of the while, though nora's found a Handsome Boy Modelling School which is getting its fair share of playtime as well.

everyone says that it's harder to be the person left behind, listening to whatever's going on, friend or what-have-you, as the other person's busy exploring everything new.

i'd beg to differ.
there are too many happy couples in prague.

Saturday, September 14, 2002

off to see a film called "i will seduce you". not really sure what it's about. just that it's czech with english subtitles. which of course pretty much guarantees that it will be fucked up.

wendy, the other canadian, has taken a great liking to the phrase, "Jak se mate?"

it means "How are you?"

the way she says it it sounds like some lecherous old man trying to pick up young girls. it sounds terribly dirty and wrong.

considering the title of the film, should any character in it ask another how they're doing, i do believe i will end up laughing hysterically. fortunately wendy's coming to the film as well, so i won't be the only one.

so. jak se mate??
at That Grand Ol' Place where i worked before coming out here, there was an ex-czech fellow named p___ k____. p___ rocks. first he told me a ton of stories about how wonderful Prague was, helping me actually get excited about things. then he translated documents into czech for my visa application because he's just that kind of guy who'll do things like that. then a few days ago he emailed my father with the name and number of a friend of his here in prague who works at a computer company. today i went to meet him. turns out he's actually the head of the company (which made people quite impressed with me when i got there and mumbled some name that i wasn't even certain about. "well there's only one michael here, but.. no!"). turns out he's a really friendly guy. turns out he likes skiing so much that he has a map of the czech mountain ranges in his office, which was the first thing he showed off to me when he invited me in. turns out he was concerned when i didn't come by yesterday, and emailed p___ again to tell him to encourage me to come visit. turns out he's more than happy to invite me and my friends places (if i'd come by yesterday, i could have gone to their cabin near bohemia with them this weekend. as it stands, i've been invited for a barbeque next week and i'll have to come to the cabin some other time.). turns out that he just happens to deal in IBM computers, so if i have any troubles with mine, he'll be able to help.

as he showed me out the door, he told me that he would email peter, who would then email my father, and tell him that i'd come visited him absolutely drunk with a skinhead rabble-rousing boyfriend so that they would both know that i was off to a good start.

i like michael already. but i really owe p___ bigtime.

crazy czechs....

Friday, September 13, 2002

"Love is a snowmobile racing across the tundra and then suddenly it flips over, pinning you underneath. At night, the ice weasels come."
- Matt Groening

i just noticed that quote at the end of a friend's email. it made me laugh. i thought i'd share.

czech intensive is over. next week we start proper classes. they've added a photography course, largely due to my pestering. the great thing about it is that it's being offered at the same time as two other classes that i really want to take. could things be any better?

at the moment i have six courses that i want to take. i was planning on doing all the ECES courses that looked intriguing now, so that next semester i could take courses through the actual university faculties. the problem is that, well, i've got six, though three of them conflict. there's another czech language course. there's the photo course. there's the czech film course. there's the czech architecture course, which i have been told is being taught by the best prof, and really want to take. there's the ex-pat american literature course which again, i have been told is excellent. there's czech literature with an emphasis on modernism and the loss of self. the photo course conflicts with the film and architecture courses. so maybe i should drop photography, but i'm the one carrying around a camera everywhere and the one who's been wanting to do a photo course for eons. but then again i don't know if it would be worth taking, because i think most other people signed up are beginners, and may not even have decent cameras, so i don't know if the course would be a waste of time. maybe i should just get access to the darkroom for meself and do photography that way. maybe take a course through the fine arts department come spring.

maybe all the stupid people signed up in the photo class at the moment should drop it.

maybe everything should be shuffled about in order to conform to my needs.

i'm all for that idea.

but do i take a full five courses now when i've been told by everyone who's been out here that they're super laid-back and easy, or do i lighten up the courseload? if i'm busy working all semester, it means i be able to travel as much and will actually save money. besides - i can take two courses next semester and still get my full 4-courses-a-semester worth. decisions, decisions....

one of my roommates, nora, has been hiding her boyfriend in her room for a week. officially, people are supposed to sign in and pay to stay here as guests, but they're just not bothering with that. if they're sharing a bed, what's the problem, right? nora's from seattle, but she was travelling around europe for awhile before coming here, and along the way she met blair, her aussie boy. he was supposed to be finding a job in london, but instead moved down here. partially to be with nora, partially because living here's so cheap that he won't have to work while he's here. at any rate. with him being aussie and me being canadian (ooh! commonwealth!), the two of us kept bonding over silly things last night while the bunch of us were hanging out. like the fact that we say "grade 2" instead of "second grade". and the fact that americans stereotype us as living in igloos and them as being bushmen.

so basically, we bonded in our not being american.

it'll be a shame when he finds his own place. particularly if he takes nora with him - she's an excellent cook.

blair's being there does make me miss brent, though. damn.

Thursday, September 12, 2002

i hear tell that he-man is being remade. is this true? will orco's music still be the same? will he-man dress so skimpily? will the whole kingdom still be as naive as they used to be, as wimpy old prince adam does nothing more than reveal his furry underwear and develop an instant tan to become the amazing he-man? will they finally reveal his secret crush on man-at-arms? (with outfits like prince adam's, you knew that he was gay...) will she-ra infiltrate the show and become the real hero? and, like rebecca mentioned, will the show still end with a cheesy moral every time?

though if orco's music is lost, that will really be the biggest tragedy of them all. well, that and having he-man remind you to eat your vegetables.

do cartoons still try to teach you things like that anymore? were they ever any good at it? did kids ever really believe that he-man and archie and fat albert were real? enough that they'd take them seriously?

What's Your Movie Dream Car?
by Auto Glass America

bet you thought you wouldn't have to see those on this page for awhile. but it's ferris beuller. how can it not be posted?

an aside: those people who haven't seen Ferris Beuller's Day Off almost frighten me. of course, some have the excuse of not being the right age to see it. but surely you've had time to make up for that. you're truly missing out.

new in prague: nothing.

except for this fancy thai place we went to for lunch. there's another program here, Lexia, four americans, but they're mostly from bellingham. we're already planning to get together once we all get back home, do the Sea to Sky or something. it's nice having a few more people to know exactly where you're talking about, though. at any rate. lunch.

it was really fancy decorations, these metal branch-like thing attached to the walls to hang the glasses on upside-down, incredible cutlery, beautiful tapestries all over. but the best thing about the place was the bathroom. first off there were really neat images that were vaguely feminine and masculine, really only distinguishable by the genetalia. right there on the bathroom doors in a fancy family restaurant. i love it. inside, the walls were these beautifully vivid colours. the girl's was a reddish mauve, the guy's was a deep purple. the sink was this ornate piece of artwork, a deep glass bowl with a stylised faucet twisting over it. instead of usual liquid soap there was a fancy-looking soap ball that looked more like something from the woods of a fairytale, looking completely organic and, well, real. instead of instead of paper towels they had rolled up fabric cloths. instead of the usual brown semi-soft toilet paper they had three soft rolls, one blue one orange and one pink. instead of a toilet paper dispenser, the three rolls were hung off of another one of the metal branch creations that had been mounted on the wall. it was gorgeous.

each of us girls took turns to check it out after dana came back exclaiming over it. after we'd all gone we sent steve to check out the guy's properly. he came back looking astounded. instead of a urinal there's a granite rock with grooves chiselled out of it so that when you pee it turns into this lovely waterfall. he says that they're remodelling at home right now, and he's definately sending back a request for a new urinal in the house.

and after all that, lunch was still cheap.

i love prague.