charabia's Blurty Entries [entries|friends|calendar]

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Meow [17 Oct 2003|08:33pm]
[ mood | enthralled ]

I now have a cat.

This makes me happy.

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[02 Sep 2003|08:15pm]
[ mood | excited ]

I'm in Paris!

(More to come later)

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Battle cry! [26 Aug 2003|10:40pm]

What Is Your Battle Cry?

Hark! Who is that, stalking over the icy wasteland! It is Charabia, hands clutching a jeweled meat hammer! She screams mightily:

"I'm going to fuck you so thoroughly, you will polymorph into a succubus!!!"

Find out!
Enter username:
Are you a girl, or a guy ?

created by beatings : powered by monkeys

Himeko - "Princess Child"

What would your Japanese name be? (female)
brought to you by Quizilla
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Friends [19 Aug 2003|12:05am]
[ mood | happy ]
[ music | Crickets outside my window ]

I had a good night. After my part time job I went out with some people I haven't seen in a while, one not since high school. We had nachos and drinks and shared yummy desserts. I wanted a bowl of that chocolate sauce. We all giggled a lot. It was fun.

French tomorrow with a new tutor, hope it goes well.

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Thank heaven for little girls [18 Aug 2003|10:14am]
[ mood | giggly ]

Went to the 3rd birthday party of a family friend. She's so cute. And tall for a three year old.

It was very difficult to pick out gifts for her. My parents and I hadn't spoken to her parents so we weren't quite sure what she was into, except a friend of my mother's mentioned "Dora the Explorer", a "seven-year-old Latina heroine who uses Spanish words to help her along in her many adventures with her friends Boots and Tico". We went to Toys R Us and were immediately overwhelmed by the amount and variety of the toys.

We found Beach Fun Barbie who came in a plastic bucket with a shovel, which we thought was good since the girl lives near the beach. My mother wanted to get her something fun and whimsical, so we found a dress up set with a crown of flowers, a wand and angel wings, all purple. Then we settled on a Dora doll. Most of the Dora stuff was kinda lame, either cheap looking or way too complicated. Then we picked up some cute clothes.

My mother couldn't make it to the party because of work, so my father and I went. It was fun to watch the kids run around. The birthday girl got a lot of gifts. Maybe I should start having more birthday parties!

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New glasses [17 Aug 2003|10:49am]
[ mood | uncomfortable ]
[ music | RFI ]

I have new glasses.

I should probably say: I have glasses. I had glasses before but for distance. Which I never really wore anyway. Since I'm going away, I thought I should get new pair. Turns out in the past 3.5 years my prescription has changed, big surprise. So now I'm nearsighted in one eye and farsighted in another. And I have an astygmatism (sp?). So the eye doctor wants me to wear these new glasses all the time, not just for driving and movies. Yuck. No offense to anyone who wears glasses but I don't like this idea. But I decided to be a good doobie and wear them for a bit. I was told that the astygmatism correct might make me dizzy for a few days and then I'd adjust. When I picked them up, I wasn't dizzy at all, so no adjustment problems there.

Except now it's 3 days later and I still don't think I see distances as clearly as I did with my old glasses. I went back to the eye doctor and they told me that I should take at least a week to adjust to them, then come back if I was still having problems. I hope it doesn't take too long, because I only have 2 weeks left before I leave!

But I am wearing them every day. I am now a person who wears glasses. I still don't like it though.

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Philadelphia, again [16 Aug 2003|11:18pm]
[ mood | sad ]
[ music | Pretty Woman on TV ]

After a crazy week of cleaning and packing and watching LC back, we finally drove down to Philadelphia to LC's new apartment. Unlike that last trip, this time LC isn't driving back a day or two after I flew back. So that's it. LC stays there, I got to Paris and we (hopefully) remain friends. I alternate between it not making a difference to me, to being really sad. I couldn't stop crying Wed after I work up and especially at the airport. Once the plane took off, I read Vanity Fair and sort of forgot. I think I convinced myself that things weren't really changing. I don't know. It really is the right thing to do. Right?

On the other hand the trip itself was nice. We had a good time. It was a lot of work, driving down was very long and tiring and then we had to drag the mattress up. Saturday we unpacked for most of the day then went to IKEA. We were going to have dinner at their restaurant but finished shopping too late for me to try the Swedish meatballs. Sunday was a tired lazy day, we returned the U-haul and did some shopping. Then we got dressed up and went to dinner. The Italian restaurant we were going to go to was closed, so we ended up next door at a Japanese-French place which was a little strange, but nice. With excellent bread.

Monday we went out to Pennsylvania Dutch Country to see the Amish. It amazes me that these are real people, who really live like this, and not actors. It was strange to see the horses and buggys on the same roads as cars. We tried Shoo-fly pie at a little restaurant in Intercourse, PA where a group of 6 Amish came in and sat right near us! We visited the Ephrata Cloister, where a group of celibate Germans lived a life of discipline and sacrifice until the last of their number died out in the early 1800s. Then we headed to Hershey where we visited Chocolate World. We took a ride to learn how chocolate was made.

Tuesday we slept in then drove to the center of Philadelphia and took a duck tour around and into the Delaware River. It was strange, because most of the downtown had no power (before the big blackout in the north) and there were cops on every street directing traffic. When we tried to go to dinner on South Street, most of the restaurants were closed due to lack of power. We ended up at Tangerine which had lots of dim lights and candles and was very good.

Then Wednesday I left.

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Almost done! [27 Jul 2003|10:33pm]
[ mood | relaxed ]

Spent a decent amount of time today working in the garage again. I thought all I had to do was sort through the table I filled with "not sure what to do with" and "keeping but where to put" stuff, when I found some more boxes hiding on the shelves behind my other boxes. But they are small and so shouldn't take much longer. LC lowered the seat on the Volvo, that was a much longer project than anticipated so fixing the parking brake will have to wait til another day. While LC was still working I went to get my second massage from a student I know. I recommend everyone get to know a student in massage school. What's better than 6 months of free massages in exchange for a brief evaluation *and* getting thanked for it since you are actually doing them a favor?

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Lots done! [25 Jul 2003|09:37pm]
[ mood | accomplished ]

Wow, I am so tired. I got a lot done in the garage. It helped that LC came by to clean the new/old car purchased last week. So I had someone to talk to and share all the treasures I uncovered with. I threw out some stuff, condensed a number of boxes down, and did several loads of laundry of clothes I found. My feet are killing me but I'm glad a good chunk of it done.

I'm going to bed now.

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Registration sites [24 Jul 2003|11:29am]
[ mood | geeky ]

A friend of mine has added her journal to these lists so to be a copy-cat, I did too.

Allows you to find other people geographically close to me.


Blogarama, an index-type thing.


Listed on Blogwise

For the record, I don't like the word 'blog'.

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Lots to say [23 Jul 2003|11:17pm]
[ mood | indifferent ]
[ music | Hum of my computer fan. ]

I haven't written in a while, which is bad of me, since I really have no excuse not to.

Quick summary of the past month:

  • Work/Money: On 27 June 2003 I was laid off from my job after 5.5 years of employment. I was the only one let go in my office. I found out later the company laid off a bunch of people and closed 22 retail shops. So now I'm on unemployment and have lots of free time.
    I still have my PT job on Monday nights (no more Fri or Sun hours) and since I can't work more than that PT without decreasing my unemployment, I can't really take another job. I will end up not that far behind where I thought I would be before school starts, but I will lose out on any money I would have made by getting a part time job.

  • Computer: I'm really happy with my laptop. I decided to return the Media Bay and get a portable CD burner/DVD player instead. I purchased a DVD burner but it's huge and I don't want something that big and nasty. So I'm keeping it for the month to put all my CD's on a few DVDs and will then return it. Instead, I purchased a really cool DVD player/CD-RW/Portable CD player from Sony. It's the size of a discman and I can hook it up to my computer and play DVDs or CDs or burn CDs. Or plug in the headphones and take it as a discman (listening to the 3 DVDs I put my entire CD collection on). Check it out here.

  • School: I ended up with a B- in my science class, which isn't great but good enough to transfer. I starting making tentative schedules for school this fall based on several different scenarios with placement exams and minors. I'm considering either an IT or Social Science minor. No more official classes for me until September, but I started twice a week French tutoring to make sure I don't forget all I know and perhaps get a little better.

  • Paris: I leave on 29 August, now just over a month away! It's really too early to start packing, but I've put a few things aside. I met at least one other person from my area starting in the fall, and will be meeting another this week. I've tried to get an apartment from a man subletting his place, but there were other people in the running and I can't afford what he was asking, but could guarantee 2 years, but I don't think I got it since he was supposed to let me know by Tuesday and it's now Wednesday night and I haven't heard anything.

  • Other: What else...I started cleaning my room, I have a crazy amount of paper. I also started sorting through all my old crap in the garage, which is a project even more massive than my bedroom. I've been trying to go on the treadmill but can't always get to it. Saw a doctor about my poor little feet, but just as I thought, they are just too small and nothing can be done. They will just hurt. Going to see an ear, nose & throat specialist in Aug to see if my tonsils are weird and my mouth-breathing is hurting me. LC purchased a car, so I don't always have to drive to the city anymore (although it's been over a week and I still have had to drive). I am going to Philadelphia in August to help LC move. I think that's it.

    It's amazing how easy it is to waste time when you have lots of it.
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    New computer! [18 Jun 2003|09:38pm]
    [ mood | bouncy ]

    Sorry I haven't updated in a while, been too busy playing with my new laptop! I really like it. It's thin and light and silver. Very attractive. I brought it to work and everyone who saw it was impressed with it's size. I'm amazed that they can fit all that stuff in that small space. Technology just amazes me. I didn't do too much to it the first few days to decide if I wanted to keep it or not but now I've decided, it's MINE! I've started the annoying process of installing software and customising it to the way I like it. It came with Windows XP which I'm not a huge fan of because of it's bubbly weirdness, but I'm forcing myself to use it for a while to determine if I really can't stand it or just don't like it because it's different. (not all change is bad. not all change is bad.)

    Well I have my science class final exam tomorrow, and really should be studying, so back to the books for me.

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    And then there was the flight home [13 Jun 2003|10:15am]
    [ mood | scared ]

    Tuesday morning we got up at 5am to shower and get me to the airport. Now, I'm not a great flyer, though I have mostly gotten over the anxiety problems that plagued me for a few years. I knew I was at least on a jet, so that made me feel better. When it was time to board, I noticed we were going outside, which I didn't think was common practice for jets in the US. The airplane was indeed a jet, even if it was a very tiny commuter jet with just 13 rows of 1 and 2. I settled in to my window seat and began to distract myself from the fact I was about to take off on an airplane.

    Right as the door closed, the pilot got on the loudspeaker and announced that there was a slight problem with the altimeter and we would have to fly below 10,000 feet instead of the normal 30,000. Due to this we would be speed restricted AND had to fly a much less direct route over places not at all in between the departure and arrival cities. This is when I began to panic. I began to talk to the man sitting next to me for distraction, debating in my head if I should get off the plane or not. As the flight attendant, Jen, mentioned, she wouldn't be on the plane if she didn't think it was safe. So I stayed.

    It was scary at the time, but in retrospect not so bad. We flew over some very pretty scenery and were low enough to see it quite well. I wasn't so thrilled with the landing when seconds before the wheels touched the plane was still at an angle (some of us wondered if we should lean over to help) but landed fine. And in the end the flight did not take much longer than originally planned.

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    I got my visa! [12 Jun 2003|01:30pm]
    [ mood | excited ]

    Dropped off my paperwork after my flight home from Philadelphia on Tuesday and picked it up on Thursday! I'm really going!

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    Philadelphia: Art, apartments & IKEA [11 Jun 2003|07:04pm]
    [ mood | good ]
    [ music | Air conditioning ]

    I flew back from Philly yesterday after spending the weekend with LC. It's a somewhat scary place. Lots of bad areas. Saturday we drove down in a torrential downpour, leaving way later than planned since I had to go take care of some things at work which took much longer than anticipated. Also LC wanted to take the "scenic route" through NY even though it was pouring rain, which did slow down once we crossed the border. When we arrived at our luxurious Super 8 the only room available was on the highway side so it was a little noisy with traffic, but at that point we both fell dead asleep.

    When we finally awoke on Sunday, we inquired about changing our room to the quieter side of the building. Then the first order of business was for LC to finally join the modern era by acquiring a mobile phone. We drove around a bit and then took the train into town and went to the Rodin Museum and a brief run through the Modern & Contemporary Art section of the Philadelphia Art Museum before they closed. We looked for something to do for the evening, but there wasn't much, which ended up being fine with us. Despite not doing much we were very tired and after the train ride and then drive back to the hotel that was about it for the night. We got pizza delivered and went to bed.

    Monday was intially going to be a "wander the city" day but it was a little overcast and rainy looking when we got up so LC made some more apartment appointments and we went to look at some places. I like doing this, just like floorplans in apartment guides but more interesting. So it was fun. The first place was not so great and we got stuck talking to this little old lady for way too long. It was mostly my fault for initiating conversation with her, but she was going to a different floor on the elevator and how was I to know she would get out and follow me? The 2nd place was really nice, I liked it a lot. The 3rd wasn't so bad, but it was hard to say since we looked at a 2 bed instead of a "junior" 1-bed, which are laid out differently.

    Then we went to IKEA. I like their catalog but didn't want to tempt myself since I have no apartment to furnish. But LC wanted to look at a bed and a desk, so off we went. The store was enormous AND had 3 stories. We parked underneath which scared me since there were all these skinny support beams holding up this massive building above us. We looked at all sorts of neat stuff. I want to buy things!

    It was getting late by then, and we hadn't had dinner (we didn't eat nearly enough all weekend) so tried to find a place near our hotel. This brought us to Chickie's and someone's Cafe. It was ok, we got reasonable food at a reasonable price. The smoke all around make me somewhat ill though. After that we went back to the hotel to get some sleep since we had to get up at 5am so I could get to the airport to fly home.

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    Computers and weekend trips [07 Jun 2003|08:49am]
    [ mood | thirsty ]
    [ music | RFI ]

    Last week I ordered a laptop computer. I had decided last year I should get one for school and recently started looking around. I saw a really neat Tablet PC convertible thingy in a store, the Toshiba Portégé but it's starting price is $2500 and so that's a little out of my price range. I planned to spend about $2K, and after upgrades and stuff the Toshiba would end up costing nearly $3K.

    It would be neat to have a tablet to take notes on in class, but I wasn't so impressed with the other ones I found, and they all had tiny 10" screens. I began to look at thin and light computers, ones I could carry with me wherever I went. It's amazing how enormous some of these bricks are, weighing 7+ pounds! One site compared the weights to different fill levels of a gallon of milk. Would you want to carry a 3/4 full gallon of milk around with you all day?

    I was learning towards the Dell Latitude and told my father, who proceed to the next day call Dell and see what sort of prices they could give with additional memory and stuff like that. Turns out to be not such a bad price. Since there are no Dell stores around for hundreds of miles, I'd need to order one to see if I liked it anyway, so I placed the order last week. The computer went out last night and should arrive on Wed, I'm excited!!

    Depending on how long the shipping does take (I got flash memory with the computer that was shipped separately and was shipped overnight) because I'm going away for the weekend on a road trip to Philadelphia. Since LC is going away to law school in the fall (Aug really) and needs a place to live, I was invited to go down for a few days and help search. Actually, I'm just going to be a tourist really. The searching will commence after I depart on Tuesday. LC is renting a car today, picking me up in a few hours and we're driving today, spending Sat, Sun & Mon nights then I'm flying home Tuesday morning so LC can find a new home and I can go to the French consulate and apply for my visa.

    It was driving me crazy planning it all at the last minute since I have things to do, but it worked out in the end. I think I screamed at LC too much, but apologised. I think it was just too sudden, trying to get things at work ready and my visa stuff ready and pack and I had to work last night and all that. But I'm going to now relax and have fun. I even gave up 5 hours at my part time job for this!

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    [04 Jun 2003|11:12pm]
    [ mood | pleased ]
    [ music | Law & Order ]

    Got a B+ in my French class. Not as good as the A- in French last semester, but still not bad.

    And they say Harvard is difficult!

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    Wow was that easy [03 Jun 2003|08:52pm]
    [ mood | blank ]
    [ music | Random french stuff on RFI ]

    Sort of. Got back from my midterm a a few hours ago. I think I spent about 45 min in the room taking what was supposed to be a 2 hour test. I think I did ok. The first two questions were easy, no problem. The third was a little harder, I'm not so sure about. The last one I had no idea. He told us not to BS, just answer the questions, but since I couldn't answer it I just wrote a bit and gave up. I'm pretty sure I got the bonus though.

    Strange to have a midterm when we've only had 5 class meetings.

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    Teaching English [01 Jun 2003|11:51pm]
    [ mood | accomplished ]
    [ music | Natalie MacMaster - A Compilation ]

    In order to give me some potential for income in Paris, I started an online TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course. It's not enough to get me real employment, but I might be able to get some private tutoring work if I can flyer and claim I'm "certified" to teach English, even if it's just an online thing from a noname place. There are 10 modules and after each one your work gets submitted to your tutor for evaluation before you can move on to the next module. I have just been cleared to start module 2. Go me.

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    I got a barcode! [01 Jun 2003|05:40pm]
    LJ Barcode
    LJ username:
    Now isn't that special!
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