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July 25th, 2007

07:35 pm - Alive!

Cavendish Beach
Originally uploaded by Hypoxia.

Well, I survived my vacation out east - and as you can see, the sand in PEI really is red! Our cottage was about 500 metres from the ocean and less than a 10-minute walk to the beach, which rocked.

PEI is a very pretty island, full of storybook fields of wildflowers and gorgeous views. It's also very rural and very slow-paced. A great spot for a vacation but I don't think I could live there. The slow-pace - not to mention the lack of coffee shops and pubs - would eventually drive me insane!

The best part of the vacation for me was actually in Rivière-du-Loup. We did a whale-watching cruise and we saw seals, dolphins and Finback whales - which are the second-largest animals on the planet, after Blue whales. Unfortunately, my camera sucks, so I wasn't able to get any really good photos of the whales - but they were truly amazing to see up close like that!

You can see the rest of the photos - including one not-so-great shot of 2 of the whales - on my Flickr account.

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July 5th, 2007

11:23 am - Bluesfest

Hey, is anyone going to the Ottawa Bluesfest this weekend? If so, who are you going to see? The hubby and I are trying to decide which acts to go see.

PS: Just thought I'd share my favourite song lyric this week, from Zombina and the Skeletones: "And if I still had eyes then I would surely cry."

Current Mood: deviousdevious

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June 29th, 2007

11:18 am - Otherland

There is absolutely nothing better in this world than reading a really good book - except for reading a really good series of books! Right now I am about halfway through the second book in the Otherland series by Tad Williams. There are 4 books in total - and technically, as he explains it, it's really just one book broken into 4 pieces for practical reasons, such as being able to feed his family and not leaving his readers with a ginormous tome to carry around! Each book is about 800 pages, which was a little daunting at first, but they are so well written and fast-paced that you don't even notice how much reading you are actually doing. I haven't been this engaged by a series since I read the Hyperion series by Dan Simmons, which seriously changed my life.

In a nutshell, Otherland is about virtual reality. But it's about so much more than that. It's about science and religion, it's about globalization and the impact that has on us as a species, it's about history and power and politics and what it means to be human. Tad Williams is a fantastic writer. Like Dan Simmons, he has a natural gift for storytelling and he creates characters that are complex and genuine.

So yeah, many thumbs up for Otherland. If you have the time for reading this summer, I highly recommend getting your hands on these books. Oh, and don't buy them one at a time. You'll want to have the next one on hand. Trust me.

Current Mood: contentcontent

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June 26th, 2007

01:02 pm - That's it - I'm moving to Germany!

Here's why:

Germany imposes ban on Tom Cruise

Current Mood: optimisticoptimistic
Current Music: Hum of the Air Conditioner

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June 18th, 2007

01:14 pm - Where's the undo button?

Today I wish my life was an etch-a-sketch, so I could shake it clean and start over again.

Current Mood: sadsad

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May 31st, 2007

11:22 am - Warning: Rant Ahead

Okay, I've been trying really hard to bite my tongue on this issue, but after yesterday, I really have to vent about this.

That little girl that went missing in Portugal. The British one, whose parents met the freaking Pope yesterday. You know who I'm talking about. If not, it's pretty easy to Google and it's been all over the news.

First of all, for the record, whoever took that little girl has some seriously nasty payback coming to him. Hopefully it will involve many years of torment that put him on the receiving end of whatever he has done to her. 

Alright. Now tell me, what kind of parents leave their 4 and 2 year old children alone in a hotel room with the window open? Especially when the window is accessible from the ground and not 15 stories up in the air? Seriously. Kieran is 10 and I wouldn't leave him alone under those circumstances. What the hell were they thinking? I know they aren't responsible for the crazy person that took her - but what kind of responsible parent would leave their small children so vulnerable? All so they could go and hang out in the fancy resort restaurant? I don't get it. I really don't. And now they're meeting the Pope and attracting more attention than rock stars. I sincerely hope someone has taken the time to bitch-slap them for their irresponsibility.

And I know that they are probably tormented and full of guilt. I certainly hope they are. But considering what their daughter was likely put through, it barely scratches the surface.

In case you haven't figured this out about me already - the thing I loathe the most in the world is irresponsibility. People who are irresponsible can cause so much damage to the people that are close to them, and this case is such an extreme example of that. I had to say something before my head exploded.

/End rant.

Current Mood: irateirate

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May 25th, 2007

11:16 am - Sometimes the little guy does win...

London squatter becomes millionaire

A HOMELESS pensioner who has slept rough in one of London's plushest beauty spots since 1986 was celebrating today after winning ownership of his plot of land, turning him into an instant millionaire.

Harry Hallowes, 71, secured ownership to a 800sq-m plot in Hampstead Heath, after a two-year legal battle with developers who tried to evict the pensioner from the grounds of a former nursing home.

A building developer had tried unsuccessfully to evict Mr Hallowes from his makeshift shack since March 2005 as it sought to transform the building into luxury flats.

The feisty pensioner dug his heels in and consulted lawyers who provided evidence which showed that he had been living unchallenged on the plot for 21 years, and thus could claim the land as his own.

The area around Hampstead Heath is well known as an expensive place to live, even by London's inflated property prices, and is home to many stars, celebrities and liberal professionals.

"Someone mentioned a million (pounds) and someone else said two million, but I'm not impressed with figures. I just wanted a place to live," a very composed Mr Hallowes said after hearing the news.

Mr Hallowes, who does odd jobs for local people including former Monty Python star turned firm director Terry Gilliam, laughed that he might now build himself a bigger residence.

"Maybe I'll build myself a house - everyone else around here seems to love building houses," he said.


Current Mood: optimisticoptimistic

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May 17th, 2007

08:49 am - You know what I hate?

I hate waiting!

New Model Army summed it up best... Patience is a virtue that I never seemed to learn.

Aaaaarrrrggghh!! Must. Know. Now.

Deep breath. 

Okay. I'm good. Back to work.

Current Mood: bouncyfull of anticipation
Current Music: The Matadors - Burning Desire

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May 1st, 2007

09:06 am - Phew!

I'm finished! I wrote my last exam yesterday - and I am so happy to finally have a break. I was all lined up to take a summer course that started tonight but I just couldn't do it. I took a summer course last year, so I guess I haven't had a real break from school in 2 years. Jebus! No wonder I'm so tired...

And in the fall I start my honours thesis, which will be a whole boatload of work, but it means I'm in the home stretch!  I have an appointment tomorrow afternoon with a potential thesis supervisor for next year. He does research on the neurobiological basis of atypical development, which is very close to what I'm interested in doing in grad school - plus he went to McGill - so here's hoping we're a good match! 

In other news, our Wayward Patrick is coming home on Friday!!! I'm so excited I can barely sit still. I've been spontaneously dancing whenever I think about it for the last two days. And on May 19 we're hosting the official Welcome Home - Here's A Turducken party. Invitations will be arriving in various Inboxes shortly.

And finally, I have to tell you that I have succumbed to a video game. This is the first time this has happened since I was a teenager playing the Hero's Quest game series. Ironically, I decided to try this new game because the couple that designed Hero's Quest highly recommended it. The game is World of Warcraft and I am an addict. 

P.S. Waking up at 6:30a.m. two days in a row has turned me into a zombie. I really don't recommend trying it.

Current Mood: happyhappy
Current Music: Koffin Kats - Red Alert

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April 11th, 2007

04:00 pm - This is how much I love my cats

Ready for the Freezer
Originally uploaded by Hypoxia.

I spent the day making cat food.

I've been considering trying homemade cat food for a while now - the Menu pet food recall was that final push I needed. Ms. Caelie couldn't be happier - Ms. Pixel is indifferent, but she's always been like that about food.

I got an electric meat grinder for the second batch, which makes a ginormous difference in time and how sore my right arm gets. That said, chopping up an entire chicken is a lot more work than you might think...

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