Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

So, it's American thanksgiving and I have a lot of shindigs to get to this weekend in celebration. Having never celebrated thanksgiving before (not even Canadian thanksgiving in October), I have decided to make a list of what I am thankful for and really get into the spirit of things;
Here goes...

  • I just finished one of my classes forever today
  • Avocados were on sale, 2 for 99c
  • I get to hang out with Judith tonight at her roommates thanksgiving dinner
  • Tomorrow, it's time to see Imogen Heap live
  • On Saturday I'm going to Bonnie's Potluck thanksgiving feast
  • Even though I am leaving Montreal so soon (and I dont want to), I will be going to NYC
  • And although I dont want to leave NYC, I will be going to Poland to see all my family
  • And then friends in Barcelona and Paris
  • Greyhound fixed up my ticket snafoo
  • My house is clean
  • I have amazing friends and family all over the world that make me smile
  • I have lately been feeling a good 'right-down-in-my-gut' feeling of possibilities and opportunities that are going to come my way soon
  • In 2 months, I will be in Marseilles, and almost en route to Portugal
  • I am living my dream here in Montreal right now (and just dont want it to end!!)

So yessum, I have lots to be thankful for. And I am. I could get used to this celebration... put me in a jolly good mood... even the impending task of doing laundry cannot make me feel bad :-D

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Warm Shower, Hot Tea and Burning Study

Its well and truely crunch time here in Montreal. As it stands, I have 1 quiz, 3 papers, 3 exams and a take home exam due in the next 3 weeks. Holy Moley!

Yesterday I moved into my new room... my roommate is back in Calgary, which sucks because I wont see her before I leave, and the new roommate has moved into my room. And me, well, I'm in Merriah's room while she's in Calgary. I love this room... it's furnished properly, not just hap-hazardly because I didnt have money for furniture, I'm sleeping on a proper bed, first time since... a long time. Before, I had a teeny ikea matress on the floor, now i have a mah-hoosive comfy bed with lots of pillows and space for all my stuff.

Oh, how I want my own appartment. To furnish and decorate as I please, with kooky textiles and funky prints and awesome wallpapers. I'm in turbo-decorate mode since moving my stuff... decorating for now has been limited to hanging my prettiest dresses and glittery necklaces off door frames and dresser drawer handles. One day, I'll have an appartment in SoHo or Chelsea or Greenwitch Village jammed full of vintage love and indie art. And fairy lights.

With Christmas knocking on the door, fairy lights are on the brain. And snow coming so so soon!! (Saturday) And the neighbours putting up pretty christmas decorations. It feels like a proper christmas.... one where you're freezing your ass off instead of sweating it off. I love a northern Christmas.

Speaking of freezing one's ass off, the furnace in my building went kaput so the heat was off all day yesterday while the messieurs put in a new one. Thank the good heavenly beings that this happened while it was 0, and not -20. The heat is back, hot water is on and I had a lovely hot shower before I get stuck into the Roman Art study with a hot cup of chamomile.

This weekend is going to be AWESOME. Friday = Imogen Heap. Saturday = Pot Luck Thanksgiving Dinner

And I'm in a good mood today, despite some teeny problems (like study) that need to be adressed. I have a lot of things to be thankful for.... happy american thanksgiving :-)

Friday, November 13, 2009

5 weeks left

Exactly 5 weeks left in Montreal. How sad! I'm thinking of going to Quebec City next weekend perhaps, and perhaps a day-trip to Ottawa. I'm looking up greyhound buses at this very moment. It's only $37 return to Ottawa.

In exactly 5 weeks, I will be on my way to the Pierre-Elliot Trudeau airport here in Montreal, boarding a ComAir flight to JFK.

I'll be staying in New York/New Jersey for the weekend, and back to JFK on Monday, 21st December for a cheap-assed 8 hour flight to Dublin, where I will not be offered food so I'm packing on the bagels... one last taste of NY over the Atlantic. I will arrive in Dublin at 5:20am, and only have an hr and 20 minutes before I board another cheap-assed, non-breakfasted flight to Krakow, arrive just before lunch and see my mum and sister, and most of my crazy family.

I'll stay with the family till the 4th of January, when mum, Julia and I will catch a train to Warsaw and I'll leave the next morning for Barcelona. Thankfully, the Warsaw airport is not so far from the city.

The rest is pretty set - Barcelona, Paris, Geneva, Marseilles, Porto. I'll be adding 2 new countries to my 'List of coutries visited', which at the moment, stands at 20.

I need to study. Quiz next week and exams approaching fast, not to mention essays and research papers. I skipped my Ancient Roman class yesterday, because of a $5 open-bar party for international students on Wednesday night. It was a mess. And there was a guy dancing in a bunny suit. As of this moment, I have finished just under half of my semester assessments. HOLY CRAP! that's not a lot, and only 5 weeks to cram in over 50% of a semesters work.

That's all the motivation I need... hitting the books... NOW

I also made a very interesting discovery a few days ago... I can count to 10 in 8 languages, say 'hello' in 18 languages and say 'I love you' in 9 languages. Made me feel pretty special.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

New York, Montreal.... Europe?

Last weekend, I was in New York. I was going to lots of galleries, eating great food and engaging in amazing conversation. When I got back to Montreal, the comparisons were kind of devastating. Coming back from such a weekend to a dark, empty apartment with a vacant fridge is not nice. Having a horrid week after is also not nice. But ice-cream with friends and a bottle of Chilean white wine makes it better. Also, a good nights sleep cannot be underestimated.

But anyway, focusing on the good parts - had a great weekend, saw NY and parts of NJ and Albany, and (really, despite having a shit week) I love Montreal and my life here. Which leads me to think of how sad I am to be leaving so soon. Only 6 weeks. I don't want to go, I want to work and live in the States or Canada, but the possibility of a work visa is just too impossible. I applied for an internship in NY which would be so very brilliant, but I know the chances of me getting it are very very slim to put it nicely.

So, with finances dwindling, I need a Plan B. And, wanting to travel around north and south America... I also need a Plan B. So here it is.... Travelling around Europe from 22nd Dec to begining of Febuary. In Febuary - move to Madrid, Seville or Valencia to get a job teaching English and work on learning Spanish (which would be handy in the US and South America), or, in France working on my French. My gut says Spain though, and has been saying Spain ever since I watched a travel show about the country early this year. S-P-A-I-N! Plus, spain is so close to Morocco... a trip to Africa is very much on the cards (to tick off another continent).

Anyway, so, I'll work in Spain until May. In May, I'll hit up the eastern US (NY, Baltimore, DC, Annapolis, Boston, Philly etc), cross up to Canada to Montreal and Ottawa then back States-side for Chicago and up to Toronto to FINALLY SEE TORONTO then onto California and down to south America (thinking Peru, Colombia and Chile and perhaps Argentina, finances permitting). Brazil - I'll have to save for another day. One of my friends here in Montreal travelled through south America last year and says Colombia is beautiful, as is Bolivia. Time for 'South America on a Shoestring' by Lonely Planet, me thinks. And 21st in the US just sounds too good to be true!

OK... so I'll be back in the land of the euro around July/August to travel a bit before September. Thankfully, europe is cheap if I stay with friends and family. And then onto work somewhere new. If Spain is a go-go first time round, I'll go to France, Portugal, maybe even Greece or Italy. Somewhere with low taxes and C.O.L but high wages (economic impossibility... I KNOW!). Learn a new language, earn some more euros until xmas 2010, which will def be a Polish affair before NY in NY?? possibly. Or anywhere States-side. And hang out there till Feb 2011 when (and I'm going to be kicking myself for this when I am stuck on a 15 hr straight flight from California to Australia) I'll take that plane back to kangaroo-land and try to graduate by November 2011, then.... who knows.

Vague ideas, exciting plans. Knowing I'll come back makes the prospect of leaving easier...