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Showing posts from 2005

Holy Hibernation Batman

Since the beginning of December, I have simply turned my brain off.

Any creative energy I have had, I needed for the last couple pushes to promote titles for work.

I love my job and I love the buzz that the autumn brings. I know I am among the lucky who can say they really do enjoy their jobs.

I also know that there comes a point when you need to be able to turn off so you can then be a better employee when you get back.

I'm not back into the office until the 3rd of January. And so my brain is now in hibernation until that time.

I have a lot of exciting things I'm hoping to achieve in the new year. I won't go about calling the resolutions, just simply turning over new leaves.

I do hope everyone is enjoying this festive time. Happy Holidays to you all.

Bust out the Pearls

30 years ago today, my parents walked down the aisle to start their life together.

Since I was born I am so lucky to have been surrounded by such love and laughter.

If there is any example of how to do it, I nominate my parents for the 'best couple of the year' award.

I can only hope I live by their example. I can only hope I am has fun loving and in love as they are after 30 years.

Ma & Pa - you rock


50 hours from now, my mother will be en route to my house from Chicago.

Internet, how excited am I!?!?!??!?!!

Letter to the Kid #5

Someday Kid, if you're lucky, you will have a little brother or sister.

I'm so lucky I have THREE. Two little sisters and a little brother, who is the littlest.

When your little, you may tend to argue and disagree a bit and there may event be pulling of hair although you'll be the big brother so it wouldn't really be fair to beat your little sisters or brothers up. If you continue, however, to act like your mom as you are right now (so I hear mister candies-need-to-be-organised-before-eaten) you will be a great big brother.

You will also have fun moments. Keeping each other company on long road trips in the car playing the license plate game or the alphabet game with countries then animals then food then..well, anything..because road trips can be long and if your dad is anything like my dad there is no stopping to go should be okay because girl bladders tend to be worse but I feel for your little siblings if they're sisters.

There will be Christmas trad…

The Party's Not Over Yet

When I was a little girl, I hated bedtime. I hated having to go to my room leaving people awake, knowing that I just might be missing out on something.

About 20 years on and I still hate leaving the party.

As I struggled this morning to pull myself up out of bed after only rolling into it about 4am, I cursed myself and contemplated my dilemma.

Why is it I'm the last to leave? Why can I not just give a big wave to the all nighters and say cheerio and good night?

It's funny to think that just over a year ago I was slightly distraught by the lack of social life I was able to have, not knowing anyone in this city. Last night, we had 3 invitations to various parties in various parts of the city - all quite important and unmissable.

The first was a wedding - er, well the reception as the couple had gone off and eloped.

The second, a house warming party for my dear German friend who, because of the ridiculous high price of home ownership in Germany, had bought her first home in her early …

Bad Bad Blogger

I am a bad bad blogger.

How can I even call myself that when my last post just bounced you off to another site?

Very very very very bad.

Does it count that I'm F-ING INCREDIBLY BUSY MY EYES ARE GOING TO POP OUT OF MY HEAD blogger? Does that give me any points?

No excuse.

Bad bad blogger.

Given er

I read a blog today that mad me laugh so hard, tears were rolling down my face.

It was not because the poster was annoynmous - it was because many moons ago, D and I used to 'hang' with these crazy animals...

The night that was described sounded like many a night spent with them.

Glad to hear not much has changed.


Congrats Jake and Linda! Can't wait to catch up in April!!:)

Marching to their own Drums

Yesterday was the very North American holiday, Hallowe'en.

I never realised it was so NORTH AMERICAN until I travel abroad and realised no one else really celebrates like we do.

Perhaps it is our self confidence in our beliefs that allows us not to be superstitious about ghosts and goblins. Or perhaps it's just another reason to spend money, including that every commerical savy Hallmark card.

At work over this past couple of weeks, I was getting the old 'oh ya, is't Hallowe'en' and then this knowing nod from the person that I have learned to understand means:

'I am simply placating your American sized ego but really think you are most ridiculous and juvenile for partaking in such a trival holiday'

I realise that I am not American but it seems anyone that comes from a continent that is not Europe or Asia is American and therefore, I have given up adding the NORTH bit every time someone mentions those AMERICAN ways. Please people, you must choose your battles…

Tables Turned

When I was a reporter, sometimes I would have killed to be able to make up quotes for people. To put words into their mouths, saying what they wanted to say but just more elegantly than they ever spoke to me in person.

Now, with the job of compiling press releases, I find myself at a loss to write good words of someone else.

There it is. A clean slate to work with. All I need to do is write them down. And I can't think of anything more interesting to say then 'we are very pleased to be bringing you..' or 'we'd like to thank...'

What happened to me? Where did all my words go? Where is that person who used to go out, talk to people, listen to their words, write them down and then imagine better quotes that would make the story sound more poetic?

Careful what you wish for, I guess.

A Package of Gold

Yes, that's right, I arrived home last night from a wet walk to the grocery store to find a treasure.

I am often asked what I most miss from home. Until recently, I never really had an answer because family and friends is an obvious one and besides them what else could possibly matter?

In an effort to be able to make conversation, however, I decided that the weather would be one thing. Sounds strange to be missing the minus 40C weather but really, its the extremes. I love the hot summer much more BECAUSE of the minus 40C weather and if I don't have the minus 40C weather, how can I look forward to the steamy summer? And there certainly isn't anything steamy about the summer here unless you count the mist and rain as I STILL talking about the weather?

After that question is answered - and if the person has not backed away slowly - he/she will tend to ask what food I miss.

The only thing I really can't get here that I can get in Canada?

Kraft Dinner. KD. Crap Dinn…

Wow, who's that girl?

Just thought I'd have a look back to some of my first entries. Amazing how not matter how time passes, emotions can come right back up to the surface with a few written words.

Here was one of the first entries I ever wrote. I still believe this is true, for those of you who are pondering the idea of starting again. I had a lot of support but I had a lot of these too:

Ah the cynics. You have to wonder why it is they think it won't happen. I think deep down they really want you to fail. They disguise it mostly with suggestions as to what you can do or bring up a lot of 'what if' scenarios - like they actually care.

But deep down, they don't want to think this will be THAT easy.I'm not expecting it to be a walk in the park but I'm being intelligent enough to know what I will risk and what my limits are. I would say so far the hardest part has been the cynics. This is something I'm so excited about. I've never felt more focussed on something extra-ciricul…

My grocery man?

We were lucky enough to hear about a month ago that D would be kept on in a permanent position at the place he is at right now.

After a few weeks of adjustment, he is getting himself nicely settled in.

What I am missing, can I say, is my grocery man.

I am spoiled, internet, I really am.

I get home from work, I go to the gym, I maybe prepare the salad but for the most part, after I shower and get into my pjs, I have my dinner made for me.

When D worked from home on Canadian hours, it meant I could call him in the morning, decide what we were going to eat for dinner and he would be away to fetch it for me, if only because if he didn't leave in the morning, he wouldn't leave the house at all that day so REALLY he was securing his own sanity..but I digress.

Now that he is a standard 9-5ver, I am left with the job of picking up any items we do not have at home before the shops close.

Which leads me to:
1 - I could finish work at 11pm and still get to a gr…

Baby Blues

I've been thinking alot about why I became so enraged by a story that was all over the news a couple of weeks ago.

It was a medical organisation that was making a formal statement that woman who choose to delay pregnancy until after 35 are putting themselves and their unborn babies at risk.

The first shot in the tv story was male doctor going on passionately about how women need to understand the risks they are taking if they are having children over 35.

Read: We realise that now 51% of the population are actually getting educated and into the workforce and might actually become the dominant sex in the next 20 years so we need to figure out a way to keep them barefoot and pregnant.

You laugh, thinking I'm a crazy bra burning feminist but as Reese Witherspoon said, 'my grandma did not fight for what she fought for, just so you can start telling women it's fun to be stupid.'

Woman - and perhaps society in general - seem to quickly forget that less than 100 years ago, we …

Many thoughts

This tends to happen to me. I start having all these wonderful thoughts I want to write down and where am I?

Walking. Driving. Eating. Drunk.

Always it seems in a place that I'm not able to clearly get them down.

I've decided when I get home tonight, in between clearing emails and preparing for meetings in Dublin at the end of the week, I will also write out some entries.

Then, while I'm flitting around the country, all I'll have to do is try to get to a place that has internet and wham! my thoughts will be live.

The busyness brings back my creativity but it also can prevent me from finding the time to get it all down.

It also prevents me from remembering that I've left my tea to stew a bit too long in the kitchen and that ... oh wait ... I just did it again.

Off to have some builders brew.

Happy Belated

The fumes from the burnt out cars must be getting to my head. Here I was all angry that I couldn't get to my email for many reasons, ONE OF THEM was that I wanted to send birthday wishes to an old friend.

(Old in both senses of the word as she too has entered her 30th year..ooooo)

I finally got into my email this morning and wrote an email, all apologetic as it was NOT MY FAULT that my provider decided to have crappy service for 4 DAYS STRAIGHT and not let us know what the problem was.

And it was only right now, this afternoon, that I went DUH sometimes THIS is what a blog is for.

My friend A-M has been in my life since high school. She was the girl I would spend many hours on the phone, contemplating life and how it was that the two of us could make a difference.

She was also the one who had a 'cool mom', you know, those moms that seem to let all the friends do the coolest things?

One of THE COOLEST things she did was let A-M paint her room white and have her friends make comme…

Spread the Word

How out of the loop am I?

I wandered the streets near the city hall in Belfast on Saturday night, happy as Larry, taking in the sounds of the Last night of the Proms.

It was only when Noel Thompson, the commentator told the crowd that there was no need to panic but the buses had stopped going I thought huh? uh why?

For those of you who may be following the news over here, Belfast erupted in riots on Saturday night, albeit only in certain parts of the town which left this Canadian totally oblivious to any sort of danger that was going on.

I am unable to get to my email (which is a completely CANADIAN ISSUE eh hem hello!!) but am completely happy and safe. I don't know what type of media coverage is happening, if any outside of Ireland and the UK but thought since the media can blow a lot out of proportion, I would state for the record here that the craic is still good in jolly old Belfast.

And I did get the bus to work today.


I have no words for the emotions I feel right now.

I read one comment that said something like:

"The first 2 days of Hurricane Katrina was a natural disaster. The next 5 days have been a man made disaster."

The sadness, heartache and anger is incomprehensive. If I feel this way, miles across the ocean, how are people actually living through it?

The Fug ladies have done a great job at compiling a list of places where we can all help.

Party Girl

Still recovering from my weekend in Glasgow. Had a fantastic surprise bday planned for D that went off without a hitch.

Have a few stories to share but after giving myself a mild concussion (read: a little bump on the head but we're talking in hypochondriac language here) my head has been fuzzy since we got on our plane home.

Will be back soon.

Letter to the Kid #4 - The big ONE

Happy Birthday Tiger.

Well mister, you've made it. Welcome to single digits. Gone are the days of defining your age by months, although I do think some moms continue to use "he's 18 months" instead of "he's one and half" but not being a mom myself I don't quite get it.

You certainly have made some milestones in this year, first being that you lit up the Bannon-House world when you FINALLY decided to arrive.

I remember waiting anxiously to hear the news. A little part of me thinks my blog willed you to come to be. Perhaps I'm overstating but at least I can live in the fantasy world until you're old enough to talk to me about it.

You are definitley one of the cutest kids in this world - my whole office agrees. There are some kids that you think, aw, he's cute. But no, you are adorable! cheek pinchable! face kissable! You definitely got it going on.

There is still a debate as to who you look like but here, let me help clear it up. When your laug…

"It's nice to have a boyfriend"

Friendsdefined so many of the moments in my life. It's silly to attach yourself to a tv show I know but what other outlet do I find myself laughing at THE SAME EPISODES OVER AND OVER AGAIN? Well, none really?

When Rachel and Ross starting dating, so did D and I. It was, of course, our 'university years' which were filled with much drama but isn't that what university is about? Basically and extension of high school except with no parents to surpervise so the drama becomes more drunk induced and later at night.

When Chandler said "How about we move into together and you understand what I'm talking about", it sort of fell in line with when D and I decided after 5 years it was time to take the plunge.

And it always seemed I had a little bit of competitive Monica in me - when travelling, we had to play Gin Rummy without keeping score because I didn't like the thought of losing. I'm easy going with Trivial Pursuit, all else, I'm pretty much a do or di…


Last night as I was falling asleep, I had all these great 'blog' thoughts.

Perfect posts to erase the previous rant from yesterday.

As I sit at my machine, they are lost. Fallen out of my head.

Must learn to write in the book that on my beside table instead of being so lazy and thinking to myself, 'oh forget it, i'll remember this in the morning'

Ya, right.

Hormonal Hell

I really can't be arsed.

I hate this time of the month. It's always the same - two or three days until the beginning of my friend's visit.

And see, Internet, I don't even give to flying f**ks whether or not I've given you too much information.

I am the grumpiest, frumpiest, most easily-irritated, most unmotivated, annoying human being on the planet.

Just hoping all the ladies in the land can sympathise.

Fingers crossed I'll back when the demons leave.

Aren't you glad you stopped by today?

For more uplifting words go here or here or here or hell, just go here.

Life List

I wish I had the courage to write down everything I wanted like this.

I clicked on it instantly thinking it would be fantastic to see just exactly what we might be on a life list. As I started reading, I became so competitive, I had to stop.

"Why can't I put all that down?" I thought.

So will book mark it and leave it for another day.

I have made a similar list. A list to do before your 30.

That actually scares me even more because I wrote the list when I graduated in 1999 (eek) and didn't expect the bit 3-0 to creep up on me so quickly.

It's packed away in a box, somewhere in D's parent's garage. It's never been looked at, except for the time two of D's asshole friends thought it would be really funny to start going through boxes of stuff in the spare bedroom I let them sleep in. I had just moved in a few weeks before and the usual Saturday night crowd - which I adored partying with - had all crashed at D's..well, it had become ours *sigh*

And not o…

Of Nothingness

A weekend filled with TV, pjs, fun fruit juice (like Blueberry and Raspberry/Pomegranate (sp)) makes Mondays not so bad.

After starting Friday off being annoyed that the clump of phelgm in my throat from smoking cigarettes with my visitors for A WHOLE WEEK, I think my body has recovered and is ready to take on the world.

Thing I accomplished this weekend:

I did ALL THE LAUNDRY! - this never happens on the weekend. It enevitably spills over the Monday /Tuesday

I read - working for a publisher you would think this happens a lot. But it doesn't

I talked to my mom FOR TWO HOURS - this is what happens when you usual weekly conversation doesn't happen for a couple of weeks. I can't WAIT for her to be done her job on Friday. There are some great things happening for her, I just hope they don't happen too soon so she might be able to take a crazy flight to visit me!

I slept - a lot. a alot. a lot. nuff said

Welcome Little Miss Norah A

You are the reason I have not updated this blog in so long. I really didn't want to say anything on this site until I had a chance to properly welcome you into the world with a few words from me.

You will now join company with 'The Kid', to whom I try to write to, although not as frequently as I should. Your arrival has reminded me I need to more often.

You are most likely wondering who I am.

You've met your goofy dad. You've met your sweet mom. You've met the rest of our crazy family, including your granny - who's head about exploded with excitement into the days leading up to the arrival, your granted - who, from past experience, is an expert at wretching open sliding doors to a hospital emergency room if you find yourself in your parents arms having convulsion within the first year of your life. (I digress but please don't do that to your parents. I'd did it four times and it was SO NOT COOL for them. Me, I don't even remember)

You've no doub…

The Year of Me

When I turned 29, I decided I would really start taking care of myself for the last year of my twenties.

I would attempt to avoid smoking cigarettes EVERY AGAIN. I can't say I've been successful however, I've stopped by packs when I go drinking so that's a start.

I also decided I would train for the Belfast marathon, which happens in April/May. I have since decided that perhaps I should try and do the half marathon but the whole motivation was really to try and keep me from smoking and hopefully I can keep that in my head.

I have been going to the gym for over a year now, not to only look good but more to feel good. I am at a loss if I haven't been active in 3 days.

I also decided to become a pamper girl. 'Take care of your skin and it will take care of you'. Perhaps it sounds decadent but I think it's a small cost to pay for a little enjoyment. Some people spend hundreds of dollars on holidays to the sun. I just need to go to the spa for a facial, manicure…

Da Funk

After a 2 week holiday, I was back at work for 3 days


I had a weekend and 3 days off, this being the last day of my 5 day weekend.


I will go back to work for 2 days and then have 2 days off.

You would think I would have had time for my brain to create something at least half interesting to write about.

Am I in a rut? I don't know.

I'm not overworked at the minute. I don't have anything sucking my creativity away - in a good way.

I guess if you declare yourself a writer then sometimes the pressure to write must be unbearable.

I predominantly work in the publishing industry now and I suppose, by standards, I wouldn't consider myself on the writing end of the scale.

Being in promotion is creative. Being promotion for books is fantastic as it does combine two of my strongest joys.

Does this mean then that the blog has no purpose anymore? Was I blogging because I had no outlet? And now I have an outlet on a daily basis and don't need it anymore?

Since we moved into our ne…

Resolve in the Face of Terror

At 6pm last night, as I was glued to the television with the details of the terrorism that struck London, I was taken aback by one simple sight.

As the helicpoter camera panned across the Thames, a commuter train was running to take people home. Not even 12 hours after the disaster that struck the city and the people of London were taking their city back.

They didn't panic. The emergency teams reacted so quickly. All the emergency prepardness exercises that have been going on for the past couple of years have paid off.

Dear Terrorists: This is what London is about. They have been down this road before and NO ONE not even you will stop all their little engines that could.


It's a fantastic feeling to get home at 530, put on your pjs and simply watch tv all night.

As I have given myself a break from the gym until Saturday, I don't really have anything else to do in the evening. Plus, as little tv as I watch, I do think I was going through withdrawls after all the visiting.

There I something to be said for just vegging.

As D works away in his home office until 10 or 11, I am free to choose what I want to watch. Who knew have the remote control could feel so liberating?

I did find D's limit, however, last night. As I scrolled through the new feature on NTL which allows you to watch any movie at ANY TIME, he popped his head back into the room.

'What are you doing?'

A - blank stare - 'Just looking'

'Hey, no watching movies without me.'

A - laugh laugh laugh 'And why not?'

'We're not spending £3 just because you're bored'.

Oh, I see, only spending money when we are BOTH bored.

Thank you

to D's parents for picking us up at the airport, making us yummy scrumptious bbq, continuing to house boxes of our stuff that AGAIN i did not get time to go through, for taking us back to the airport.....

to D's sisters L and S, for hanging out, catching up and of course, sitting in the sun....

to little B and tiny L for being so cute and full of energy.....

to J and Z for showing up after a romantic ring-getting dinner, for providing the wine, staying up late even though you both had to work so early, for the great conversation......

to my T.Dot friends for dropping everything mid-week to spend time with an old pal....

to J and L, the beautiful couple who's fairytale wedding was more than inspiring and who's smiles made me smile for many days after....

to E and the Tyeger - little man, you are cuter than you know. it's almost harder to write to you now that we've met but I'm sure i've got a few more words of wisdom to share. your mom is such a super lady. no…

Some Random Thoughts

My sister is so cute the way she uses her left hand to talk MORE THAN I HAVE EVER SEEN, subconsciously showing off her amazing rock that dreamy K got her.

She is also a huge nerd for have labeled inboxes on her home desk that say 'c to pay', 'c to file', 'k to pay', 'k to file' she's running a little empire from her studio flat.

Hangovers must come from cigarettes because I have never felt better each morning since I arrived.

That the air conditioning is totally deiciving and I am glad I only packed summer dresses to wear for the next two 30 degrees sorching weeks.

Holiday suck when they go by quickly but this one is going at the perfect rate.


There is simply something about sun.

Something about the way it makes you feel when you are sitting in the backyard of a familiar home, amongst family, with the yellow circle beating its light down on you.

You don't really realise how much you miss it until you are able to sit in front of it. Feel you skin burn with the red sensation of a summer 'tan'. Feel the warmth in the air, not simply in the sun.

I lived for over 20 years of this being my summer. I have only lived without it for a full summer and I feel like I've stopped breathing.

If you were to take a survey today and asked me where I wanted to be, I have to say it is not where I am currently paying rent.

I can only hope that in two weeks time I will have put into perspecitve all that is Canada and stop worshiping it.

For today, it is a place for me, full of red and white flags, that holds not only all that is dear, but all that is me.


This week has gone slowly and quickly all at the same time.

I'm nervous we'll arrive late for our flight.

I'm giddy about the prospect of putting on my bikini tomorrow afternoon. (who ever thought you could actually be giddy about being in your bathing suit?)

I'm nervous about reading at one of my oldest friend's weddings.

I tired of being at my desk.

I'm worried I will forget something.

I'm so so happy that I will soon be home.


I decided two weeks ago to go on a detox in an effort to:

a) give my body a rest from all the creative festivities I have partaken in this past spring

b) give my wallet a rest so that I can spend away again once I arrive back home

c) continue to experiment with my biological make up as it facinates me the way we can be our own science experiments

I weaned myself off tea and it took a whole week. I decided I didn't want something to have that control over me again and so, I no longer intake caffeine.

This is quite big.

I have been drinking Tim Horton's coffee since the age of 15. This could explain why I'm so short and hyper.

In university, I graduated to Starbucks, probably thinking in some annoying early-twenties-self-absorbed way that I need to become more distingued as I got older and but ultimately, only made the money in my wallet disappear faster.

When 2 grande Starbucks a day finally caught up with my stomach, I switched to tea.

I didn't realize that I had become so depe…

Thoughts on Creativity

I have decided to add a few things to this blog along the sidebar in the hopes that this information will change every day.

This may also get me writing again every day.

Someone made an interesting point to me about working in creative industries that if your day job includes creativity, you may have less of it to devote to your creative hobbies.

This is actually true.

I have often wondered myself why I have struggled on occasion recently to write daily here when this is something that I have been doing ever since I could pick up a pen.

My work was being published when I was 16 in a newspaper where I worked as paid reporter. Not only was I writing news articles, I was writing two weekly columns.

Writing does just come to me sometimes and I feel a bit lost when words don't flow out the end of my fingers.

I realise, however, I am actually in the luckiest situation. They always say if you do what you love you will ultimately succeed. I have always tried to live by this, which I why I left t…

End of Stage

An important stage of my creative development has just ended and I'm not sure how to feel.

I suppose I will reflect more when I get back from holiday.

Change should always be about a new beginning. Things don't end, they simply transform.

Country Roads Take Me Home

I will be home, in Canada, in less than 2 weeks.

This will be the first time I have had a proper holiday at home.

It will be a whirlwind.

I hope it doesn't go too fast.

It's taken long enough to even get close.

I am SO EXCITED!!!!!


Congrats to my friends L and S on the news that a little O.M.C has been born. A couple of weeks early and a labour that was shorter than an episode of the OC, L seems to already be settling in well as a super mom.

L helped to mold my interest in event planning and real marketing. She also was such a kind soul and a great asset to my career growth.

She also throws great BBQs, even though her liquor cabinet got a bit sparse by 4 am.

Guys - so happy for you. Can't wait to meet him.

Happy Birthday to Me

Today is my birthday. I am now entering the last year of my twenties, or, as my mother likes to point out, my 30th year.

I found this astrology report was sent to me free from

It explains a lot...and is a bit eerie how accurate it is:

Section 1: The Inner You: Your Real MotivationYou are, in many ways, an eternal child. Your mind is bright, alert, curious, flexible, playful, and always eager for new experiences - and your attention span is often quite brief. You grasp ideas quickly and once your initial curiosity has been satisfied, you want to go on to something else. You crave frequent change, variety, meeting new situations and people.

Section 2: Mental Interests and AbilitiesYour mind operates in a very deliberate and methodical manner and you dislike being rushed or forced to give an opinion before you have thoroughly ruminated and digested an idea. You are also difficult to influence once your mind is made up.

So I'm pretty much a stubborn dreamer who likes…

where am i?

I have forgotten what my desk looks like - there is so much piled up on it that I can't even see past the paper.

I have forgotten what my boyfriend looks like - eight more sleeps, eight more sleeps

I have forgotten what an empty email inbox looks like - 300 messages is that much is it?

I have so much to remember that I've forgotten things in order to make space for new things to forget.

Sure Thing, Not a Problem

There are some days that you arrive with the greatest intentions and leave with your head in a spin.

I am about to walk out the door now because I truly think my brain has turned off.

Just had this conversation.

*Bring Bring*

(A picks up the phone)

A: Hello?

AnyOldOne: Hi A? Yes I'm just calling *problem**problem**problem*

A: Ah yes, no worries, I will get that sorted for you by the end of today


AOO: It is the end of today.

A: Oh. I guess I won't then


A: Uhhh...have a nice long weekend?

D's been gone 8 hours and already I've lost it.

Courier Hell

Can someone please explain to me how I can list of names of companies that can get packages from Toronto to Orlando from by 9am overnight and yet getting a package from Dublin to Belfast (this is an HOUR AND A HALF DRIVE PEOPLE!!!) can actually take up to 4 days??? BY COURIER????

I love my job. I relish the challenge of the stress that comes along with deadlines. I even love the stress. I admit it. I'm perhaps a stress junkie.

I don't, however, like to be at the mercy of people, who, in my mind have not had the foresight to really THINK about the important components of running a courier company. If I didn't care how quickly it got there, I'D SEND IT IN THE POST!!!!

A lot of the time, my job relies on things being delivered. It also involves on things being delivered OVERNIGHT or within hours, something that perhaps my spoiled North American working self is quite used to.

Not so much used to the Irish delivery systems. Not so great to endure the kind of stress that comes p…

Rest in Peace

I had a dream the other night I was 3 months pregnant. My stomach was in so much pain and the doctor told me 'that happens' in the first 3 months.

I woke to realise that it was partly true - my stomach was in aches and pains although it was probably to do with the Pilates and Abs Blast classes instead of a child growing inside.

When I relayed the story to girl at work, she promptly told me:

"That means someone's going to die."

A bit taken aback, I laughed it off and realised I could attribute this to ANYONE in the world as at ANY GIVEN MOMENT someone is sadly passing.

It was only after I got home, however, that I realised my dream perhaps has actually predicted a death close to my home.

I have killed the fern I was supposed to be tending.

I walked past it last night, the pathetic leaves drooping, the stems at the bottom pulling themselves away from the roots.

Who knew you could OVER water a plant?

I did have one last ditch effort on Sunday where i mixed up some MiracleGro…

When it rains it pours...

The weather over here is pretty much the same temperature all the time. There is now extreme cold or extreme hot. Just extreme centre. I used to like that.

But now, it's old to me. It's like one day just seems to slip into the next and I can't really remember if it's April or December because the weather certainly doesn't give me any indication.

I hate to complain about the weather. It is such a trivial, inconsequential component. One that we can't control, so what is the point in talking about it.

I'm happy my mood will soon be lifted.

The excitement is building for a surprise visit by a truly cool Canadian travelling chick to Belfast.

Our friend A.K. not only saved my lonely, anti-girlie girl butt on a booze cruise in Corfu, Greece, she also put me up in her bed in Edinburgh for the festival AND made Leeds a pit stop on her final trek around England before jetting off back to Canada.

Also Ms. A.K. only stayed for a couple of months when she got back there.

She w…

The Pipes

It was the sound of the pipe band bagpipes and drums that brought me to a halt in the conversation with my mother this morning.

I stopped her mid sentence.

"Mom, sorry, there's a parade going by my window".

She was as giddy as I was. I quickly opened the window to allow the music to float up into our fourth floor apartment.

I knew it took us both back to a time when I was little and she was, well, probably about my age, perhaps a bit older.

We would have been standing along a road - in small-town-Ontario-anywhere - waiting to see the Ingersoll Pipe Band in the parade, march past us. And there, at the back with all the drummers - the renegade musicians - would be my dad'; his brow furrowed in concentration, altering only slightly to give us all a wink and a half smile.

The sound of a pipe band is such a lovely noise to me. To me, it was community. People of all kinds getting together locally to watch the musical procession. Togetherness really.

About 2 minutes later, there …

Letter to the Kid #3

Right, listen up little dude. I just realised that I am really crap - oh, sorry, don't tell your mother I just said crap; it will be our little secret.

So, I'm really crap (AGAIN...ix-nay on the wearing-say) at updating lately and have realised that the least I could have done was update on 15 April to say a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my most avid reader (probably only reader) your mom.

She has now - as my mother liked to point out - entered her 30th year.

Which just goes to show two things, little man.

1 - I really need to get a grip and a schedule but mostly that I need your help to continue smiling and laughing all day as this helps me to feel not so bad that not only am I not there to celebrate with her but that I totally dissed her in the blog world, oh-bad-friend-that-I-am.

2 - Parents will get their revenge in the end. Like I'm not going to be able to call my 29th birthday the first day of my '30th year'. Thanks mom. But hey, they do clean our bums so we should let a…

Things I Am Accepting About Me

As I approach 30, I begin to think about the personality traits I have that I don't think I can ever change.

It's not about giving up, more about letting go.

I am so competitive - The only board game I can play without getting agressive and red faced is Trivial Pursuit, and that's because it feels less like a game and more like a 'joint learning experience'.

I am crap at being alone - I need about 30 minutes alone time a day. This can be easily achieved on my walk to work and on the bus. I can go for about 5 waking hours not speaking to another human being but after that, I just start speaking to myself. After a day, I start reinventing my childhood imaginary friend Jenny. Although, she never really talked that much, just listened to all my wisdom. (With you're imaginary friends, you are always right)

I am a non-conformist who hates breaking the rules - I was a goody goody as a child, rarely got in trouble, always was saying sorry and was deathly afraid of police o…

Miss Brown Thumb

All day Saturday, in your comfy blue pants, your too long Hard Rock Cafe Mexico shirt and your Canada Hockey baseball cap, walking with bags in hands out of my apartment, down the hall, into the lobby, down the stairs, across the road, down the alley, across the other road, into the new lobby, up the new elevator, down the new hall and into the new apartment.

Trip after trip after trip.

Ready to sleep by 4:30

The arrival of a friend with a van sparks a bit more speed but conversation tends to take over.

And then the realisation that the last ice hockey game of the season is on in Belfast.

A mad rush to find out who wants to go. A dash to the box office to buy 6 tickets, a mental scramble to finish cleaning the old kitchen, eat chinese food amongst boxes and bags in our new apartment and frantically tidy ourselves up for a night out.

Livening up at the game and the glee of realizing they have gin and tonics NOT just beer, although at the last 4 games you've suffered through with lager.


On the Road Again

When I left home for university in the fall of 1995, I had my heart set on seeing the big wide world. Well, at least seeing the big wide Toronto where I would be going to school.

My first night in residence was like a grown up slumber party. Over excited and adrenaline pumped teenagers huddling together in common rooms. Except instead of Coke and chocolate to send our sugar levels soaring, it was fruit juice and vodka...or wine...or beer.

And so it then became home. Living amongst your peers brings you so close to people that you can't help but exclaim to all of them, at every moment, of every day, 'we'll be friends forever'.

It felt like home.

It's only once March hits and you don't find your roomates anal retentiveness all that cute or her habit of bringing back men all that sassy. It ceases to be a place of comfort and becomes one to be escaped.

And so, I decided to move in with those chosen from the house who I felt most comfortable with. It ended up being one g…

One Year On

A year ago I was wondering what D and I would do in a new city, only two weeks in, without any friends and FOUR DAYS OFF.

Over here, you get a long Easter break. There is no school 'March' or 'Spring' break. There is 'Easter Break'. This perhaps comes from the religious influence however, not going down that road so I will digress.

I remember feeling happy last year. We both had jobs. Had a lovely, new, centrally located flat that we could relax in for FOUR DAYS.

But I have to admit, I was also feeling a bit cheated. Or perhaps I felt more like I WAS CHEATING.

People wait for the Easter long weekend all year. (That and the 12th of July holiday as it is also two days off but again, not getting into it. DIGRESSING MORE!)

But here I was, two weeks into a new adventure of work and adjustment and I was getting an ill-deserved break.

I have so many friends back home who I knew deserved a four day weekend off more than I did. I had just spent four months, mooching off D'…

Home Sweet Home

Could it actually be that I'm sitting my house, posting on my blog???

Internet at home. Sa-weet.

I DEFNITIELY have no excuse now.

Except that I'm a bit tired and want to nap.

Quantity will bring quality. Yes, it will.

But sleep right now will bring happiness.

Chapters - NOT the bookstore

I feel like I could muster up something quite clever to write if only I could perhaps stop my brain from thinking of the twenty zillion things that it already has in its head.

When I was a much regular blogger - (when perhaps I didn't have a job that was fufilling or friends to socilize with - although, not to suggest those who do blog regularly do not have those things; only simply that I am too weak and disorganised and distracted to pull it all together) - I used to contemplate a lot.

What would be. What is. What could be. When would it be.

Now, I'm just living in it. Living it. Loving it.

I wish I could somehow make a transition more effectively from 'nomadic-travelling-girl' to 'career-city-girl' in blogging zone. It's like I feel my words only have their place if I'm off on some adventure.

I used to hate my career city girl life before. Loathe. Loathe. Loathe.

Now, I can't get enough of it. So much so, I really begin to second guess myself on the k…

From Bed to Pot

There have been many times over the past few years when I was 'praying to the porcelain god' asking for her to and promising that alcohol would never again touch my lips.

It has been YEARS, however, since I've been praying to that same god, without a drop of alcohol to blame it on.

Sunday night I went to bed, refreshed from a long weekend in Dublin.

Monday morning I woke up with a power drill touring my intestines.

I spent the day in bed and in the bathroom, only finally waking up about 7:30 to eat some toast.

What made it even more pathetic - or sweet, depending on how you look at it - was that D ended up returning home from work around 11:30 with the same ailment.

Sharing the bed and alternating turns at the toliet. It must be love...right?

Finally getting my feet back, I'm only just feeling better NOW after I had some homemade soup.

Someone asked if a bottle of whiskey was involved. I will say, I wish it was. At least then, it would have been worthwhile.

Fresh new start

Changing my focus here. Quantity not necessarily quality.

Quality will come with time. But I need to continue writing regularly if I'm going to write at all.

And so today, I have a question for all your horkers and spitters of the world.

What is it about slurping up a loogy in your mouth, pursing your lip muscles into a round shape and throwing it with your tounge out into the wide air to land on places where people walk?

Some people question smokers and ask why they think the world is their ashtray.

At least cigarettes can be picked up.

At least cigarettes are not gooey and sticky and wet.

Let's try and keep our personal liquids to ourselves. We don't pee in the streets. Keep your goobers in your mouth.

Jeans Peace

I found my peace

You can not describe in words the way a good pair of jeans feels.

There is some eurphoric satisfaction in putting on a pair of jeans that make you feel whole.

My most productive days are in jeans. Good jeans. The ones that make you feel as though you are not even wearing clothes.

Work wear now includes casual Fridays. I am most productive when I am in my jeans. Do employers not realise this?

I am not much of a shopper, for those of you who know me, you may already know this.

I enjoy buying things if they are on sale and if I can justify them more than a night out in Prague.

When I put my mind to purchasing an item that requires more than a bargain, I will shop around.

As I read in Glamour this week, I am actually more like a guy shopper. Infrequent shopping for high quality items. Long research process.

I started at the Gap. The King of Jeans. I was highly disappointed, which made the search all that more labourous. If I could not find a pair of jeans that I loved at …

Dear Diary

Dear Diary - why is it every time I open you up to write, the last entry always begins with: "Wow, I can' t belive how long it has been since I've written!"?

Reasons why I am a "lazy git".

1 - Because instead of taking 10 minutes at night to write a blog, I plop in front of the tube and watch episodes of Friends that I have seen a gazillion times but continue to howl each time I see them.

2 - Because if I missed the "saturday-morning-house-clean" because I'm away with work, I don't actually make up the time, I just wait until the next saturday.

3 - Because I got to bed before midnight and can't drag my ass up before 8 am.

4 - Because I am happy to use the excuse that because D is on the computer, I must take full advantage of having the remote control to myself.

5 - Because even though the gym is closer than the bus stop, I still can only manage 4 times a week, averaging 6 hours. Way to go, fitness freak.

6 - Because I used to be good …

The First to Fly the Coop

I have failed to mention that I am the proud and giddy older sister of a recently engaged sibling.

My first little sis C got popped the question atop of the Navy Pier ferris wheel on the 27th of December. Her dreamy boy K was quite good at keeping it a surprise (NOT doing it on Christmas Day) while also making her the happiest little event planner in the whole wide world!

I can say that I could see her smile across the miles when she told me after we got back from our holiday in Tunisia. A holiday that almost cost me hearing it straight from her!

It was only by chance that I called my dad on New Year's Day from Africa (at a VERY EXPENSIVE AMOUNT) just to say hello and let my family know where I was staying.

(yes, I realize that since I knew where we were staying 4 months ago, it would have been wise to email them then to avoid panic and worry while I was away but procrastination is definitely a friend of mine)

The only thing my dad said in our 2 minute conversation besides "H…

So Posh

While out at our anniversary dinner last Friday night, D dropped his fork in the middle of eating his steak (massive and perfectly cooked, I might add).

He looked at me, quickly picked it up and placed it back down on the table.
I laughed, turning to get the server's attention, and said, "Here, I'll get you another one."

He looked at me...stunned.

"No, what do you mean?" he said anxiously. "3 second rule".

I gasped "Not in a restaurant!"

I grabbed the fork out of his hand and did an awful mom-like-tsk-tsk and politely asked the server for another.

And it dawned on me, that the floor in our house was probably 10 times dirtier then the one in the restaurant but I would never have flinched if he'd picked it up at home and kept eating with it.

And it also occured to me that the only reason I was shocked was because it was IN PUBLIC, not in the confines of our dining room and NOT because of the disgusting-ness of germs that are on ANY flo…