Thursday, April 28, 2005


Well, we made it to Valencia and I am currently siping Sangria at the Lounge, groovy little bar just down the street from our hostel.

First impressions of Spain - OMG - Why the heck am I living in Edinburg? and why did I wait so long to make this trip??

Valencia is gorgeous '- of course it would be, what with the palm trees, balmy weather and amazing architecture. The vibe and energy are also incomparable.

I have to say - this is what a holiday is all about and it is just what I need. Within five minutes of being here I suggested to Anne & Jen that we stay an extra night.

OK, OK, I know you are dying to know just HOW HOT it is here. WEll, let me tell you - it was hot enoguh that I had to wear a sarong and tank top. It was hot enough that I had to put sunblock on at 6 in the evening.g. I twas hot enough that we ate paella outside at 10.30 tonight. Yeah, it was 28 when we arrived. No wind whatsoever.

Other interesting things that have happened today, my first day on Spani & Ireland adventure-

We met an Irish guy on the bus from the airport - he walked us most of the way to our hostel. We didn´t get his name, but I´m putting bets on Paddy or Michael.

There are too many (yes, I said it) candy shops here. I will need a new wardrobe soon. very soon.

There is a river that used to rnu through the centre of Valencia , but it dried up and has since been turned into a massive park. So basically you have this amazing stretchof green running through the middle of the city. And then you have an amazing number of beautiful Spanish men running through the park. And they are all wearing short shorts. I know where I am having lunch tomorrow.

K..I would write more but am being anti social at a bar - so not cool! Will blog again asap.! Hope everyone is enjoying the weather in their respective corners of the world! 28 degrees!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, April 25, 2005

72 hours from now I will be lapping up the sun on the shores of Valencia, Spain. Lalalalalalala....

Yep, I am actually getting excited, which, oddly enough, is not usually a state of mind for me pre-travelling. Usually I am too distracted by day-to-day stuff or to preoccupied with making sure I have a place to rest my head at the end of the night.

This time I am just looking forward to the sunshine, chilling out and enjoying what Spain has to offer in the way of seaside towns, national parks and big city life (Valencia, Jaca and Barcelona, for those of you who are really curious....)

And I admit that I was rather freaking yesterday when I tried booking at 4 different B&Bs in Dbulin only to be informed they were all full!!!! I finally found one though, thank goodness. Wasn't too keen on alternative options of dodgy Dublin hostel or Darragh's digs.....

K, so I gotta much to do before one goes on buy emergency sugar rations and make sure one has necessary clothing to make do. Ahem. Cough, cough.

Ole Ole

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

A big thank you to Anne! I am using her day pass at EasyNet to do some major emailing and researching. That being said, I've only a few minutes to blog because I have a date tonight...a date with the T.V. and Desperate Housewives.

Funnily enough I almost did have a date tonight..a date with an Irish lad (just take a bloody guess what his name was!?!? Yep, you got it), but apparently when a guy asks for your number, suggests going for dinner mid-week and then DOES NOT attempt to 'walk you home', he's really just not that into you?!?! Am I going crazy? I thought the logic was more like - if he 'walks you home', then asks for your number, you can expect a no-call. But a respectable, polite lad who doesn't actually ask for anything but your number and sees you only as far as the doors of the pub? Hmm...there's something about the Irish I will never understand..not that this will stop me from trying. Everyone now indicates that, in addition to my candy addiction, I am on the verge of being known as an Irish-aholic. Ah well, what can ya do? Worse things happen at sea!

Anyways, its been a mad week and a bit - from O/T at work to craziness in the nights & weekends! Last Thursday we went on a literary pub crawl - the tour guides led us from pub to pub and treated us to verses from some of the best and most famous Scottish writers/poets. It was an enjoyabel evening, save for the fact that most of it was not spent inside the pubs, but just outside them or between them! The best thing was meeting a cool Canadian coupl, whom we've decided we are going to harass until they agree to be friends with us.

Friday night Jen, Emily, Kelly & I hopped up to the Walk About for some tunes. The live band was awesome, although their lead guitarist was nowhere near as cute as Blue Moose's !! It was a great night - I finally concluded that Old Guy is not attractive at all - infatuation over and out!

Saturday we decided to do a Scottish lunch and went to the Conan Doyle for Haggis Neeps & Tatties - OMG - it was sooo good!! Afterwards, Kelly and I went to ASDA for some American shopping. I learned a valuable lesson - one should always try on a bathing suit before buying it and tankinis are NOT flattering on anyone who lacks a washboard stomach.

Saturday night we had some gals, and one lucky dude, over to our house for some pre-drinks, then headed out on the town. WE started off at a rather 'alternative' bar called Opium - I wasn't wearing enough leather to feel comfortable, so headed for Drop Kick Murphy's, where we rounded out the night by singing Amarill....Is this the way to Amarilla??

Sunday I finally made it inside the Edinburgh Castle - it was a free weekend, so us cheapies were raring to go. It was good, but I am glad I didn't pay 8 quid ot get in - nothing can compare to the castle I saw in Carcassonne. We did see the Stone of Destiny though, and the War Museum was amazing.

Monday night was a potluck at Beth's - nothing amazing to report here - I ate a lot, surprise, surprise.

And here it is the middle of the week already. This time next week I'll be packing for Spain and sunshine. I'll try to blog again before then.

SISTER SAHRA - I will send you a postcard - can you pick up some refills from Caryl Baker asap???? Money will be wired to your account via the banking services of Mother Teresa :)

Monday, April 18, 2005

Hey everyone! This is just a note to say I am still alive and doing well - life has been crazy/busy/grand lately and I just haven't had a moment to post. Rest assured, I'll post an update of what's been going on within the next few days...before I head off on holidays!!!!!!!!!!!! Hehehehe - hello Spain and hot weather!

Saturday, April 09, 2005

So almost a week has passed since I wrote 'Most Sad & Depressing' post ever. I vow never to challenge that record again!

It's amazing how much one's outlook can change in a mere six days - come to think of it, its amazing how much one's outlook and circumstances can change from one moment to the next. Even though I'm constantly reminded that life is made up of the moments and it only takes one moment for fate to change one's life, I still find myself genuinely surprised and slightly distraught by this fact of life.

So, yes, I am feeling about 100% better than I was last weekend. I don't really know why, it just happened. In this particular instance there was not one specific event/insight that magically transformed my blues into pinks (or whatever colour is associated with happiness). Certainly, the words of wisdom provided by others had a major effect on my state of mind.

Anyways, enough of that - here's the update on how I am going to deal with my crises:

NOTe - if you want to skip these rather boring details just skip down to 'Review Of The Last Two Weeks'

I've decided that I will stay in Edinburgh until the end of August and am crossing my fingers that the landlord will let Kelly and I sign a five month lease. My reasons for staying are threefold:

1. I think it wise not to commit to any new adventure whilst in despair or a state of limbo. I have seen what happens when people make choices based on a temporary emotional state, and most often they end up regretting that they made the decision they did. I think the best thing for me now is to re-energize and do some soul searching about what it is I want from the rest of my formative years (am I crazy to consider mid-twenties formative? or just in denial of my ageing self?)

2. I do love Edinburgh and had a blast here last summer. It would seem rather silly to leave just as summer is about to hit the bonnie land - after all, I made it through the darkness of winter just so I could be here for the Festival, looonnnngg days and warm nights. I have slight concern it will not match up to last year's summer, what with Jen & Vanessa in absence - but, boody hell, I have to remember my own credo to Jen & Keri when they were worried we'd have no friends after last summer, when Kathleen, Brandon and ABerdeen gals left - I told them that's the life of a traveller - and, no doubt, we would soon have a new circle of friends and., of course, we ended up with a load of fab new friends (Fall Friends, I like to call them)!!! Heck, I've already got a new flatmate, and another one coming in May (think it will be Kelly's friend, Lindsay) and Brandon is moving back to Edinburgh!

3. By staying put for the next five months I will have an opporunity to research potential new adventures and opportunities. To that end, I am seriously considering getting Broadband at the flat if it is possible with my laptop - right now I could really use the presence of a computer savvy person completely unrelated note: so Mom & Jim, I think you should come to Scotland to visit very very soon :)

Anyways, so that's the plan of the mo. I've already started considering possibilities for future adventures/opportunities and will keep you posted as the picture becomes clearer.

I guess now would be as good a time as any to stress that I am not desperately searching for love/soul mate. I know I mention lack of significant other once in awhile (or maybe more often), but, believe me, I am not out in search of aforementioned 'soulmate' at the moment. If he happens to pop into my life, then so be it, I'll accept fate's decision that the time is right.In the meantime, I shall reassure myself that fate has decided the timing just isn't right and take that as an indication that I should be doing other, significant things with my life! As a sidenote, however, I will say that to have love and lost is, in fact, not better than never having loved at all - at least in my limited experience, but then again I have a rather great fear of failure......

Review of Last Two Weeks
(in bullet point, to boot!)

  • Returned from Sweden - highlights of return trip included: 1) purchasing huge box of Fazer Mints at Vasteras airport, thereby satisfying my need to dispense of Swedish Krona and my appetite for delicious chocolate with liquidy mint filling. 2) Purchasing 100mL bottle of Issey Miyake Perfume at London Luton airport for duty free price of £42.70 - I can't stop smelling myself these days - I am in love with my scent. 3) getting on an earlier flight home from London Luton thanks to super-friendly EasyJet check-in lady - bless her!
  • Meeting my new flatmate - OK, so I already know Kelly. We went to university together, we made it through Intergrated Functional Management together, she lived in Ottawa at the same time I did and, funnily enough, we both worked at Health Milk company back when we were both much younger (She had the better job as ice cream sampler. My job as office clerk only afforded me free paper cuts). Despite all this, I really don't know Kelly that well and am excited at the prospect of having a new flatmate (ie new blood!)
  • Celebrating Jen's new career at Disney World with a night of karaoke - it had been too long since the world heard the harmonies of the Dynamic Duo! We treated our audience to insipring renditions of Queen's 'Don't Stop Me Now', The Spice Girls' 'Wanna Be' and Bryan Adam's 'Summer of '69'. Rock on Belushi's!
  • Surviving last weekend (see previous post to understand why this is a highlight worth mentioning)
  • Planning Spain trip. I am going to Spain!!! It's all fiestas and siestas for me!!!!!!!!!!!

Other notes/news

  • Loads of O/T available at work - my manager was literally begging me to come in this Saturday morning but it really isn't work it for me to work double time when I have to take two hours of commuting just work a four hour shift. Much more reasonable for me to do mid-week overtime at 1.5 times pay, since I am already at the office.
  • This Tuesday the entire team is staying until 7 o'clock to get the figures down (i.e. process client's requests before they go out of service standard targets). We are being fed. This is anticipated highlight - you know how much I love KFC (ahem..ew!)
  • I am seriously contemplating possibility of hopping over to Ireland after my Spaing trip - that bloody Tony Hawks book about hitch hiking around Ireland has got me wistfully wishing to I could spend some days relaxing on the West Coast. I've been checking into coach tours, even though I'm usually opposed to packaged itineraries that I haven't made up myself. I think I 've found myself an aweseom deal -I can buy a jump-on, jump off ticket for the Paddywagon Tours that is good for 6 MONTHS!!!! IT costs £89, but fees during time on coach are included, the tours are guided and there are loads of day activities to go on during the journeys from place to place. Definitely cheaper than hiring a car on my own and a great chance to meet other people, while following my own sched. Best of all I can return anytime in the next six months and still use the ticket!

K, best get going, I've lots to do today in preparation for tonight - it is Vanessa's last weekend in Scotland and it just occurred to me that I have to get her something as a going away gift!

Friday, April 08, 2005

Thank you to everyone who emailed/commented/called me this week, it meant a great deal to me and I am eternally grateful for having so many wonderful friends and family near and far.

On that note, please be advised that I have, since last Sunday, sucked it up and got on with the business of living life to the fullest and enjoying the moment, rather than fretting about the future so much that I forget the golden rule engrained in my by John Lennon (and my parents), that ‘Life is what happens to you, while you’re busy making other plans’.

OK, now I am going to kind of contradict myself by advising that I have undertaken the advice of people wiser and older than me and am now going to invest my time & energy in considering possible plans of action for the future, researching the opportunities available to me and taking careful consideration as to which one(s) I should pursue.

In the meantime, however, I will also enjoy the experience I am immersed in!

Tomorrow I will be back to writing a normal blog post and maybe, just maybe unveil part of my surprise!

Sunday, April 03, 2005

I probably shouldn't be writing this post because I am so very sad. And sad people don't generally write interesting/entertaining blogs. Yes, I am so sad there are actually tears running down my face at this very moment. As if any of you needed to know that. Sorry.

So, why I am sad? WEll, I suppose it is the result of a number of recent and not so recent events that are causing me angst and heartbreak and major stress. Let me list the ways... but first, let me congratulate Miss Jennifer MacPhail on scoring big time in the job department at Walt Disney Florida - she'll soon be strutting her stuff as a food/beverage server whilst hanging out with Mickey and Donald.

OK, so as for the list:

1. My best friends are vacating the flat we have shared for the last ten months. Keri is searching for a new flat and still trying to decide whether she wants to do the live-in job thing this summer. Jen is doing her Europe Trip in May and then spending the summer trying to make some money.

2. In regards to the above I am now left to find a new flatmate (Kelly Coffin is taking up one room) AND, more concerning, I have to sign a new lease, since I wasn't on the previous one. This means I have to committ to another six months here and take full responsibilty for the flat. I am not happy with either of these scenarios.

3. Work is doing nothing for me mentally. I am disappointed with the fact that my main plan for the near-distant future (to study in Sweden) is not going to pan out. I am flat out of other creative ideas and it seems my mind is too numb to provide for any further creative thinking at the moment.

4. Mid-likfe crisis continues to plague me. Career is lacking, direction is minimal, and significant other is completely absent.

5. You know, it's only after you've finally discovered what it is to love someone unconditionally, that you can really understand how devastating it is to be unable to express those feelings... and how utterly impossible it is to simply ignore their presence in your heart and head.

So, that's it. For the first time since I arrived here, I am utterly and completely homesick. I forgot how horrible it feels. I just want to be home right now, sitting on the deck, listening to the birds chirp and feeling the cool breezes of spring against my face. I want to forget all the burdens of being an adult, and enjoy the bliss of having not a care in the world. But somehow, I'm pretty sure that is the stuff of fairytales or movies or something. Reality is something else entirely.

I am at a loss. How am I supposed to recover from this? The sick feeling at the pit of my stomach is something I've not experienced in a long while. OK, so I suffered similar downfall in November, it was 'only' heartbreak that was the culprit then. This time around it seems as though almost every facet of life that has been providing me happiness is now causing me pain or confusion.

Randomly, I have been pondering the following possibilities:

1. Moving back to Canada sooner rather than later
2. Moving to Belfast
3. Sticking it out here for the summer in hopes that time and fate will work in my favour
4. Working on a cruise ship
5. Moving to Australia/New Zealand - some sunshine might help shed light

Yeah, so I am sorry that this post holds title ' as most Sad & Depressing Ever', but I had to get this off my chest, and since I don't have a dog, well I had to blog.

On the good news front - I have my health and it is sunny, gorgeous day here.