Thursday, June 26, 2008


Technically I guess it's just "meme". I keep seeing these come around on blogs, and I thought that rather than do something productive, I'd do one to. Actually, a lot of these things are things I started to think about since B&I went to Italy after (brace yourselves) being friends for NINETEEN (19) years - and we wondered where all the time went...

1) What was I doing 10 years ago?
In the summer of 1998 I was rowing every morning, competing in the CORAs, ORAs, and Henley, working at the Barrie Rowing Club (coaching? managing?), and working as a cashier at Shopper's Drug Mart.

2) What are 5 things on my to do list today?
1. Laundry (in progress)
2. Meet with J about cabin directions and key for next week
3. Fill out incomplete grade forms for lazy students and turn in to A&R
4. Buy figs
5. Get massage

3) Snacks I enjoy:
TJs peanut butter cups & cocoa almonds & chocolate covered pretzels, overly spicey nut mixes (why???), entire bags of potato chips (uggghhhhhhh), cookies (but only good ones - and often the entire bag), cold crispy apples (generally only on hikes or while camping)

4) Things I would do if I were a billionaire (in no particular order):
Build sustainable log house somewhere awesome that runs on solar and is small and efficient both energy and space-wise. Donate solar panels to college with a giant "HA" and "see ya later suckers, find yourselves a new geologist" letter of resignation (having accomplished what I wanted). Hire professional organizer to go through all my crap and, well, organize it. Go to Iceland. Go to the Altiplano. Invest. Retire. Start-up a "geo-tourism" company for educational geological fabulousical (good word, right?) field trips that people pay me to run (not that I'd need the money...) Pretty selfish... well, there'd probably be more generous things too - but who can say when one is not a billionaire?

5) Places I have lived:
Southampton, England
Harare, Zimbabwe, Africa
Barrie, Ontario, Canada
Kingston, Ontario, Canada
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Bakersfield, California, USA

6) Jobs I have had:
rowing club assistant manager/manager
teaching assistant

Considering my claim towards disliking teaching, I seem to have an awful lot of teaching-like jobs on that short list... hmmm... surely I must have done something else???

bread slippers?

I stumbled upon this video...

It it odd.

It involves a hairless cat, a bundle of puppies and what appear to be slippers made out of loaves of bread apparently (among other things).

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

home sweet dead trees

I guess when you go away for a month, and during that time SoCal sets record high temps, there's a good chance that your fig-twig and avocado-in-a-pot might not survive.
Thanks to H, I now have a new reference for growing stuff on a patio. Perhaps there will be some improvement? Currently I'm just hoping that with some water my poor little trees will return to life, even if it is a sad and pathetic one.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Quick blast through Canada...

Had to make a trip to Kingston - Queen's University - to get some work done on a paper. While there, I wandered by a few places that I used to live (clockwise from left): The great house on University & Earl - we had the whole upper level and I had two rooms to myself, The "shoebox" on Johnson & Aberdeen - we had the upper back level, and our "balcony equivalent" was the sad and pathetic fire escape, and Miller Hall - where I spent most of my time in my office - home of the Geology Dept.

While in Kingston, I caught The Gertrudes live for the opening of the Skeleton Park Music Festival. Good times - bizarre number of wanna-be-genuine-hippies in attendance.

Back in Barrie, I traveled back in time at the Queen's (bar) and connected with friends who date back to elementary school and early days working at the rowing club.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Italy leg 1: Rome & Pompeii

Going in a spiral from top left, around circumference, finishing at bottom center.

1) At the Trevi fountain (jet lagged)
2) One of many Egyptian obelisks around Rome
3) Pantheon
4) Roman columns on Palatine Hill
5) Street roasted chestnuts (yum)
6) Mosaic at Pompeii
7) Pompeian Roman Forum with Vesuvius in the background
8) Chariot ruts in Pompeian road
9) Trevi fountain at night
10) Colosseum
11) Cats at ruins of Roman temples
12) Tiny bubblegum pink car

Italy leg 2: Florence, San Gimignano, Pisa & the Cinque Terre

More or less from left to right and top to bottom...

1st "row":
1) View of Florence from outside old city walls at sunset
2) David (replica near Uffizi)
3) Nice dinner out at Cibreo

2nd "row":
1) View of Florence from top of Duomo
2) View along Arno River from Ponte Vecchio at sunset
3) Ponte Vecchio (and a rowing shell)
4) Leaning Tower of Pisa
5) On the train

3rd "row":
1) Petting bronze boar at San Lorenzo (Il Porcelino) Market
2) Standing on the Ponte Vecchio
3) Posing strategically by a fountain
4) Liturgical clock (apparently still functioning) in the Duomo
5) Ridiculous close up of frescoes of the Duomo

4th "row":
1) Wooden Armillary sphere in the History of Science Museum
2) Spiral steps climbing down from the Duomo

5th "row":
1) View of Vernazza (one of the Cinque Terre) from the harbour
2) View of Vernazza from up on the hill behind town
3) Some of the many towers of San Gimignano
4) View of Tuscan hills and homes from San Gimignano

Italy leg 3: Venice & Verona

From left to right... (sick of this yet???)

1st row (Venice):
1) Typical view along the Grand Canal
2) Typical view of sinking uninhabitable lower levels of buildings
3) View over Basilica San Marco (and the city and the lagoon) from the top of the bell tower
4) Bells in the bell tower

2nd row (Venice):
1) Sketchy floaty train tracks on the way into Venice
2) On the Gondola
3) Ponte Rialto at night (on the Gondola)
4) Our Gondolier

3rd row (Verona):
1) Nice tiles trying to disguise pay toilet (trough) as not being "crappy" ha ha
2) Wine & Grappa shop where I finally found "Grappa di Miele"
3) Bronze sidewalk plaque showing Roman layout of Verona with Forum in the center, and utilization of a meandering river loop to protect the city on three sides (the other side had a wall)
4) Verona's Arena, 3rd largest, best preserved, made of pink marble, and hosts summer operas!

4th row (Verona):
1) "Juliet's balcony" (if you care to believe she really existed and don't require evidence)
2) "Romeo's house" (even more skeptical than Juliet's!)
3) Venician winged lion proudly showing Venice's hold on Verona in the Piazza Erbe
4) View across Adige River