Thursday, December 23, 2010

My Favourite Place I've Never Been

I thought about why my epic worldwide trip went bust.
Obviously, money. I brought three times the stuff and close to no money, a bad combination really. I didn't plan enough, I just kind of went. I liked the no plan thing, however, I wish I had some planned structure, which of course leads back to a budget.
I think the main problem though, is I don't know how to travel properly. I know that sounds like a very strange excuse, but it's true. I don't know how to balance life, work and excitement. When I'm home, all I do is work, go to school and sit around the house. I was thinking about why I'm so dissatisfied with being back, so, I turned to the trusty old Rough Guide of the World, Make the Most of Your Time On Earth. I love this book, and it's second edition. I bought it when I was seventeen and it inspired this whole, "Go" phase- as I like to call it.
I opened up to the chapters on Canada and started noticing a pattern. I've done so much, but I've only done one thing in this entire country. I started to think about how I spend my time here- working, school, lazing around. Partying?
I need to treat every place I'm in like it's my favourite place I've never been.
So, my new goal is to actually experience it. Learn how to save money in a way that lets me enjoy the city, but also go other places- festival fest 2015 anyone?!
I need to stop being so afraid and jaded by it. In essence I need to do what I did in Paris... just say oui.

Friday, November 26, 2010


I've been thinking a lot about possession. I always have. When I worked retail, I used to muse the changing of ownership, does it occur when the person picks up the item and claims it? When they put it on the register? When they pay for it? When it's in the bag? When they walk out of the store?
Some nights it was slow.
It made the whole situation very awkward when they couldn't pay. I know that they don't officially own it until money is exchanged, but I feel like picking it had to do something, in their mind they owned it when they brought it up and saying no felt... well, awkward. When do you truly possess something?
When does something, or somewhere possess you?
Today one of those spammy message things asked me if I live in Vancouver. I said no.
I know I moved to Scotland, and I've been moving to Scotland for a while, but just tonight it occurred to me I did it. Scotland, in a way, it possesses me. How and when did that occur?
It kind of just hit me right now.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Last days in London.

So, my strategy here has been to just go with what happens. And what's happenin' is super fun to go with. I was rooming with these Irish kids the day before yesterday and they adopted me as their new weird friend. So, when they were like, "Want to go clubbing?" I said, my new fave word by the way, "Yeah." We went and had a great night, we started at this pub where they mixed strongbow with blackcurrant juice- dangerous stuff. Then we ended up at this club where it was 90's night- at least I hope it was 90's night and not like that bar in Switzerland that played strange music in a non ironic way. I danced a lot, we met some English guys who were living in Seville. They were fun.
Yesterday England was playing the All Blacks. I found the only pub with a TV. This guy who was in his late 40's sat down and was all like, "ah, dya want me to 'lain the 'ame to ya love?"
I just want to point out that I really like how men here do the whole 'love' thing. Love and sweetheart. I explained that I played back home and he was like, "Ahhh. Who are ya goin' for then?" then his cousin ended up coming and I had a very interesting chat. Listening to the two of them bickering reminded me of my Dad and any one of his brothers just bantering. So funny.
After I went to the hostel, and I saw a note on my door from one of the girls I went clubbing with- not an Irish girl, she's from Australia. We ended up doing a pub crawl. We started at this place and I had a cheeseburger. I'm going to take a minute to talk about this cheeseburger. It was one of the best I've ever had- and we all know how I feel about cheeseburgers. The difference, in my opinion is homemade relish. It just makes it taste better. Then we went through the bars and ended up at ministry of sound- London's first house club. I had a lot of fun dancing, however, now I smell and really need to go eat some roast and shower.
You know how it is.

Friday, November 5, 2010

London- ALONE

So guys, I’m doing laundry because I smell. Life’s fantastic like that. I got my hair cut and my bangs are finally fixed, they no longer look like I cut them with safety scissors and thread snips. The guy thought I was entertaining, and he was awesome. I also encountered the “bangs make me look like I’m 30” thing. But, what can you do. He said I really didn’t cut them badly... undiscovered talent maybe? Is it just like sewing? Honestly, I don’t think I’d want to work that closely to people’s faces. I’m too absent minded and well... I don’t even know.
Anyway, as mentioned I smell. It’s pretty. I smell because I spent 4 days doing journal entries. I chugged a litre and a half of red bull the other day and looked at the wall for 10 minutes and blinked.
I’ve been terrible and haven’t been writing, so I’m going to do a basic overview of my time in each city:
Rome: I was really sick. I ended up throwing up from non alcohol related conditions (though I think that a lot of my vomiting had to do with the slop they were feeding us. It was spam. The only person allowed to seriously serve spam is my 11th grade English teacher because she is AWESOME.) but, I still went and saw Rome. Even though I was often alone. I went to Ostia and LOVED it, the Mediterranean Sea is beautiful, SO beautiful.
Florence: I thought I was making headway on my little social dis-ease I was having with the people I was on the trip with, however, that all blew to bits when I got told that everyone secretly calls me know-y behind my back and rightfully thinks that I’m a huge loser. I decided I didn’t care and didn’t want to be friends with anyone anyway. Florence is cool, I did a lot of cafe-ing and my roommate was awesome, it just sucks it turned out like it did.
Venice: I LOVE VENICE! I love my Nonno and I respect him and everything but why the fuck did he move to Canada when he had VENICE right there. VENICE! I wish I could’ve stayed longer. I got my own little cabin because no one wanted to room with me. I loved it. Fantastic times.
Lucerne: First experience where I didn’t have my own room. We had an extra move in with us. The profs arranged the food, we had stuff cooked by the owners wife every night, it was good. I had missed veggies and whole wheat bread. Yummy times. I went out on my own one night and had a really good time. I watched some rugby, had some beer. The first bar I went to was the one my prof recommended, I stayed for a beer and listened to, IN THIS ORDER: La Vida Loca, Mambo Number 5, and, The Macarena. This was, keep in mind, NON IRONICALLY. I left before I burst out laughing. It was BAD. All in all I like Switzerland. It’s a lot like Vancouver. I’m really, really happy I bought a jacket in Florence though. Best. Decision. Ever.
Paris: When in Paris, Just Say Oui! It’s a total new way of life. I like Paris. Men stop me in the street to tell me I’m pretty. It’s fantastic and I miss it a LOT. Like a lot a lot. I don’t like Modern Art and my mark suffered because apparently I’m not allowed to have a negative opinion on ANYTHING. I mean REALLY. Anyway, if you haven’t been to Paris, go to Paris. Also, the lady at Sephora thought I was Parisian. Oh, and the food! I mean, my lunches, not the “food” they gave us at the “hotel”.
London: Well, I’m still here. But when I was with the group... I had the two best roomies ever. It was like a fun little party all the time. I actually really miss them. I managed to sprain my knee while getting out of a booth, and I saw Les Miserables with the group (WOW!) and Wicked with some of the people (double WOW). It’s strange, last night I wasn’t sad. I felt bad, everyone was like crying, and all like upset and whatnot and I was like, “I’m sad about some people, but some people it’s like, whateves.” Actually, after brekkie this morning, I miss the full English breakfast more than most of the people.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Burn Out

Tonight, as I was packing, a thought crossed my mind,

"I should just go to the airport tomorrow and go back"

At this time, I am so burnt out, it's actually taking a physical toll on my body. My mind doesn't care about anything, I forget how to be social and happy, my knee is sprained and I'm just... drained. I know that I'm a good person, with a good personality- and a lot of it, but I just feel so suppressed and tired. Just tired and drained.
I can't go home tomorrow- I have tickets to a rugby game in Edinburgh on the 13th, All Blacks vs. Scotland. If I die, I want someone to Lucky Stiff me up and bring my corpse there. Buy me a beer and let me at least have one last hurrah.
That's kind of a shitty thing to think...

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Florence, in a nutshell.

Arte. Not Art, but Arte. Also, penises in the breeze and Michelangelo.
I have dreams that the little headpiece we have to wear burns into my ear permanently and I'm stuck with a professor droning on about Michelangelo for the rest of my life. Not that I don't like Michelangelo, I saw the David today and let's just say, big fan, big fan. But I didn't need to hear my semi ancient prof talk about foreshortening for a couple of hours to go with it.
They also had an exhibit of musical instruments- THAT was neat. There was a woman playing Bach on the harpsichord, made my day.
Other Florence highlights? I have officially eaten the perfect classical balance, harmony, symmetry of gelato- it was caramel and WOW.
Also, I took a fantastic wine and cooking class. It was nice to have wine that costs more than 3 euro, MIND YOU, my favourite bottle here costs 3 euro and 41 cents- a splurge, I know. On Saturday I'm heading up to Venice, a welcome change. I love Venice. I can't wait for Lucerne, and what can I say about Paris? I'm really looking forward to London though. I love wine and all, but I was sitting today eating dinner and thought, "Man, I could use a beer." I'd drink beer here, but it feels like I'm hurting someone when they have cheap and delicious wine and wine smoothies that aren't like the time we tried to make them. It was the biggest disaster since we tried to make Frangelico.
Anyway, I discovered I own a magic dress, got cured by natural methods from the oldest pharmacy in the world, compared myself to the birth of Venus (no comparison.) and saw some weirdly translated t-shirts (I ghostbusters sign pussy. if anyone knows what this is supposed to be, seriously, I've lost sleep over this). I've realized my Italian isn't as bad as I thought it was, and I bought a stylin' coat.
It's been a solid two weeks.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

I suck at this

Clearly. I also dont have punctuation right now because Im on an Italian keyboard that is either faded or wrong. In my defense, my personal journal is 100% up to date, which means I at least have a little tiny win. It SO counts. So, Ive been a lot of places now, Ostia was amazing I went to the beach! The Med is quite the Sea, it was like harsh warm. We ended up on a private beach, it cost like 6 euro to get in, but it was completely worth it, the beach was clean and warm and the drinks were so European... we flirted with the bartender and we were talking about rum, I was all, Grande, no picollo. And he was all, tell me when.
So European.
Some new people moved into the chalets besides us, I dont think theyre the beer ball type though, sad really, I was rocking that. I seriously havent drank aside from those two times, Its expensive and I already feel like Im about to die, no need to accentuate the feeling.
Everything is so overwhelming, I feel like I havent even scratched the surface of the subject matter, and I also feel like sleeping all. The. Time. Seriously, who gets sick on the weekends?
I went to the Vatican for church this morning, all devout and such. The Pope is apparently in Ireland, good for Ireland. Really though, Im tired. And now Im rambling with part of the main point being getting my full hour of free 'sorry the wifi isn't working' campground internet. They blame the weather which is... strange at best. Today there was a literal torrential downpour for three minutes after being completely sunny and hot the entire day. I hope there isn't a thunderstorm tonight, It's so loud and shaky in our chalet, I'd be scared to death.
I kind of just want to ditch the schooly bits and head for the beach...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Wal Mart Italia

I have seen and done so much, however, there is a special place in my heart for Panarama. We literally walked in and one of my friends was like "I smell fruit, and.... tires?" we looked to the left, there was fruit. To the right, tires. This place, is fantastic.
So far, I have made a weeks worth of sauce for $50- that's lunches AND dinners, gotten the cheapest red bull ever, bought heaps of boccocini and SIX PEACHES FOR NINETY NINE CENTS!
I love this place!
My sore throat situation is getting slightly better, and I'm at least talking now. I think it's a byproduct of the second smoke, so many people on the tour do it. I'm so tired though, must sleep!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Ciao Roma!

Hi Everyone :)
So I'm officially in Rome, sitting by the pool and getting tanned as we speak! Fantastic ain't it?
The flight was a flight, I just read the guidebook- Rough Guide to Rome if anyone's curious. Between that, David Copperfield, and napping I almost didn't have time for the fabulous Mr. Janson- Don't worry, I was a total academic and made sure to do the readings. I was SO worried about customs, but it was the easiest thing ever. The guy just winked at me- and that guy can wink at me ANY day if you know what I'm sayin'.
We headed from the airport to our campsite, it's so fantastic. Like I said, there's a pool- which is SO necessary. I don't know the exact temperature, but we did 9.2 kilometers of walking today and let me tell you, I pretty much sweat through my clothing, which in my twisted logic gives me total permission to pig out on carbonera tonight.
One of the coolest things here is the market across the street, it's like the wal mart of Italy and is completely insane and completely cheap. A buggy FULL of stuff only cost 54 euro. The most expensive thing is sunscreen.
The walking tour today was, like I said, long and sweaty but full of so much good stuff. I can't wait to explore it all in depth!