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Monday, March 31st, 2008
9:21 pm - An email I sent, but would like to share with you...
Last month I had urged quite a few of my friends to help me vote for my hometown of Kingsville for Kraft Hockeyville 2008. Well, we made it into the Top 10; then we beat Huntsville to get ourselves into the TOP 5!!! Wow! This is a major accomplishment for such a small town that is so close to the American border. We'd really love to prove that we are, in fact, Hockeyville! If we win, Hockey Night in Canada will come to our arena and do a broadcast. As well, we'll receive $100,000 in much-needed renovations and, believe it or not, WE WILL GET TO HOST AN NHL GAME!!!

Now, this is where you come in. I have been voting through the website as well as the phone - but in order to win, we need your help! Voting is open for another 4 days, and you can vote as many times as you want! Voting is unlimited!

Enter 1 for English
Enter 3 for Kingsville

...or to vote at the CBC website, visit http://www.cbc.ca/hockeyville/community/Kingsville_Arena_Complex and hit the "Vote" button. You'll be prompted to type in a word (Kraft, 2008, or Hockeyville) and then you can submit your vote.

Both myself and everyone from Kingsville really appreciates your support! This had already really helped to bring the community together. Oh, and for those of you who are not native to Essex County, feel free to view the video provided to get a sense of where I came from! :)


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Sunday, November 18th, 2007
7:36 pm - The life of a teacher
If would like the opportunity to say goodbye to life as you know it, pursue a career as a teacher. Everyone always said to me that your first year of teacher is hell - it was never that I did not believe them, but I suppose I saw it different from what I am experiencing now. And I do not mean to complain (that isn't what I am trying to do here) but there are days when I come home utterly exhausted and want to fall into bed, but a pile of marking, or planning, or something stares up at me. There are times when I feel as though everyone is asking too much of me, and I have a terrible habit of being unable to say no, enough is enough.

And then there are the times when one of my sections averages 89% on a unit test, and I realize they truly understood the material. Or when I ask them to critique the novel, they say it was the best book they have ever read. I feel as though I have imparted that knowledge and passion upon them, and helped to shape their understanding. I started a new unit with my grade 11s on Friday (Death of a Salesman) and in giving them background information on Arthur Miller, I mentioned that he had been married to Marilyn Monroe. Since I am fascinated by the famous blonde, I gave them extra information on her - and the kids were, in turn, fascinated with her background story. Small instances such as that make me love my job.

Parent-teacher interviews are this week - Thursday evening and all-day on Friday. To be honest, I get nervous just thinking about sitting across from irate parents who are angry their child is doing poorly. Confrontation makes me anxious.

So, in news pertaining to the rest of my life, I have adjusted to living in Toronto well. It still feels as though we are only visiting. I am looking forward to the city in the winter... we went to the Yonge-Bloor reference library today to work (marking Gatsby essays for me, while Jordan is participating in NaNoWriMo) and although fall weather is lovely, I could imagine how pretty the city would be under a blanket of snow. Snow also means that it is much closer to my birthday! All 6 of my classes write their exam the day before my birthday - so my birthday weekend will not be as exhilarating as hoped.

Last Tuesday was a day full of mixed emotions. Early in the day, my department head gave me the word that the proposal I submitted a few weeks prior had been accepted. Every year the schools offers an ETS4U course, grade 12 Studies in Literature (English). The subject matter and teacher changes annually, and there was a call to the English teachers to put in proposals if they were interested in teaching the course for next year. You had to indicate what you would teach, the texts, mark breakdowns, etc. I developed a course around Drama of the 20th Century (not the sexiest title, I know) and they chose it to be offered next year. Since I teach two sections of grade 11 English, and I have a special fondness for them, I have been recruiting them for my course. For a new teacher, not only to the school but to the profession, this was a major accomplishment, in my opinion!

Then, later that day, I was on my way home when the car in front of me hit a pedestrian. They ran right in front of the car (we had the green light), was knocked out of his shoes and was airborne the length of a bus. With first aid training, I thought I would be of assistance, but luckily the ambulance was there within a minute, however it did not look to me like he would make it. Such a bizarre event to witness, but what bothered me was that I had just changed lanes moments before the car hit the pedestrian. I could have easily gotten in front of the car, but decided to slow and just pull in behind him. Seriously, the car's entire front window was smashed in. I was on my way to another school in Midtown, near our house, for the first night of X-Play for the Improv Team - needless to say I did not make it, because I ended up having to stay at the scene of the accident for almost 3 hours to give my statement.

My apologies if my life revolves around school but, to be honest, as a first-year teacher I really do not have much else! :)

current mood: busy

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Sunday, August 26th, 2007
9:35 pm - Torontonian
In Toronto, stealing a network connection from somewhere in the building. More to follow, promise, once we have regular internet and I'm not freaking out about my first day of work. Off to watch Hot Fuzz.

current mood: nervous

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Wednesday, August 22nd, 2007
10:24 am - The last days
I had a wonderful day with Christina yesterday, eating lunch at Tango downtown and enjoying a pedicure in the late afternoon. We felt lazy and decided to come home and watch television which, of course, included the America's Got Talent finale. I was pleased to see the ventriloquist win, but still feel Butterscotch deserved it overall.

Around 5:00 I started getting this really bad headache, so when Christina left around 10:00 I crawled into bed. I woke up periodically through the night, still with the headache. I only had a travel-size bottle of Tylenol which was in the glove compartment of my car so I didn't bother taking anything, I'd just figured sleep would fix it. I figured wrong. I woke up feeling nauseous and seeing a little flash of light in my left eye. Migraine, or something. So it's bedtime for me - packing can wait until tomorrow because today is Jordan's last day of work.

Figuring out when we're moving into our Toronto apartment has been a week-long ordeal. Last Sunday I called my landlord asking if she knew when the tenant was moving out. The tenant called the next morning while I was at work, and left his work number. The landlord called and left his email. Since I was working during the day I figured email would be the smartest; too bad I wrote down a letter wrong and didn't realize my email hadn't gone through until late in the week. I called and emailed some more, but couldn't get a hold of him. So finally last night I tried searching his number, but he's unlisted. This morning my landlord got back to me and gave me his home phone number. Here's hoping that when I call today he'll be able to tell me when the hell we can move in... and here's hoping it can be Friday or Saturday.

To bed I go.

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Saturday, August 18th, 2007
12:34 pm - August 4th visit to Windsor
Ictus at the Chubby Pickle (Windsor, ON) - August 4thCollapse )
Photos courtesy of Charlotte Tiessen, abstracttouch

Jordan had to work at 8:30 this morning, so I got up with him and ate breakfast, then continued to organize and pack things. I feel very productive. I also did some errands, which included going to the optometrist to shop for new glasses. I only have my one pair and they're pretty funky, but I wanted some coloured ones. The neatest thing was the lady there took my photo with four different frames on and emailed them to me immediately. Once I have Jordan's opinion (and I've gotten a hold of Green Shield to see what they'll cover) I'll go back on Monday and order them. More photos will follow!

For the rest of the afternoon I will be reading Lullabies for Little Criminals, which was the 2007 Canada Reads winner. I haven't had much time or energy to read, so I deserve some relaxation. Speaking of which, Christina and I are planning a half-day of girly-goodness on Monday. Hoping to make appointments for massages, if we're able to do so on such late notice. Joy!

current mood: cheerful

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Friday, August 17th, 2007
5:30 pm - Lederhosen
As I peruse my journal's friends list, I usually skip over the entries for the Rufus Wainwright community I belong to. I still love Rufus, and have enjoyed his recent release, but having not been to one of his shows in a few years (and being away from Deanna, iloveyoudee) has diminished the Rufus-mania I used to experience. Lederhosen still equal love, though.

Packing is s-l-o-w, but now that I am done camp I will have time before we move next week. Today the kids made me work hard for the money. We presented our Reader's Theatre to friends and family, but before that we had to call parents for a kid who was threatening to kick and punch one of the instructors, after he screamed at me and ran away. For anyone who's worked at a camp knows what "runners" are like, such fun.

Water is boiling for the pasta I am cooking for myself tonight, mmmm. I wish I had told Jordan to get me some garlic bread, it would have been a nice accompaniment. He was nice enough to go to the store to get me the fixings for sauce, since he had the day off.

I seriously have to go watch television... Dr. Phil is talking to a woman who is married, yet still carries on relationship with "sugar daddies." Awesome.

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Wednesday, July 25th, 2007
7:12 pm - ???
Did you miss me?

I caught up on all of your journals, and although I didn't have time to comment, know that I read whatever I've missed the past few weeks.

Important bullet points:

- I have strep throat. Left work on Monday to go to the hospital.

- Jordan and I now have an apartment in Toronto!!!

- Work is causing me great anxiety and stress.

- My online course is more difficult than I had planned.

- I will be in Windsor the weekend of August 4th.

- My job in Toronto starts on August 27th. I'm starting to freak out a little, to be honest.

That's the long and short of it. I have work to do for camp, so byes for now.

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Wednesday, June 20th, 2007
8:37 am - Camp is draining the life out of me
As of last week, I am an official member of the Ontario College of Teachers. So awesome!

Further updates coming soon. There is much to catch up on.

Spoiler: I may be coming back to Windsor for Canada Day weekend.

current mood: drained

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Thursday, May 24th, 2007
9:07 am - This and that
I don't know what to do with myself right now. (Should I start singing the White Stripes song?) I've worked mornings the past few days, and had my evenings free, mostly due to my request so I could watch the American Idol finale. Which, might I add, I am not too impressed with. If it was going to be Jordin vs. Blake, I'd have given it to the beat-boxer, as much as he annoyed me. His rendition of Bon Jovi angered me.


I work at 3:00 this afternoon, and the boat cruise this evening. I love the boat! I play music for the kids and make sure they aren't doing anything naughty. It's supposed to be so hot today. I hate summers, and I don't have an air conditioner yet. Ugh. UGH! It's already so hot in my apartment, and my plans to read are being squelched because all I can think about is that I'm warm. Maybe I'll just continue looking online for Toronto apartments that are in our price range and in the neighbourhood of where we'd like to live.

I think I've lost my desire to blog.

Books I've purchased in the past two months and plan to read (or have already done so):
- Lullabies for Little Criminals, Heather O'Neill
- Brother Dumb, Sky Gilbert
- Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
- The Bell Jar, Sylvia Plath
- Angels in America, Tony Kushner
- Alias Grace, Margaret Atwood
- Wicked, Gregory Maguire

Yeah, yeah... "classics." But I have to teach quite a few in the fall, and I haven't read them all. Including the Salinger or Plath. Tsk, tsk. There are also some Ondaatje pieces that I'd like to read that I've had forever. Jordan has also been on a buying spree, so I'd like to read some of his: Hornby and Murakami, in particular.

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Tuesday, May 8th, 2007
7:17 am - Being sick sucks
I started getting super sick last week, and it's gradually been getting worse. So bad, in fact, that the other day I just fell over. Equilibrium has gone awry. I went to the clinic last night (which was an endeavor in itself) and was told it was clearing up. For extra measure, I gave myself a double dose of medicine and ended up passing out at 10:30. I feel somewhat better, a big relief.

My point is: Being sick sucks. I know you agree!

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Wednesday, May 2nd, 2007
1:26 pm - Are you kidding? Holy shit, you really aren't.
I got the job! I got the job! I got the job! I got the job! I got the job! I got the job!

I am currently home on my lunch break (my "summer" job as a camp coordinator started on Monday). I started making lunch, sat in front of the television, ate, and just as I was about to walk out the door I noticed I had a message. From the school I had the interviews with. I honestly can't believe it - apparently I'm charming. The principal said I had a magnetic personality which, I would suppose, makes up for my inexperience as an English teacher.

I got the job! I got the job! I got the job! I got the job! I got the job! I got the job!

So, Jordan and I are moving to Toronto in August. I want to go NOW.

As a side-note, go see Hot Fuzz. Not as good as Shawn of the Dead but hilarious nonetheless.

current mood: ecstatic

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Monday, April 23rd, 2007
12:35 pm - Pro-fesh-yon-al (Me trying to say 'professional' in a funny voice)
So, you know that interview I had last week - the one I was super stoked about? It went well. Really fucking well.

I even came out of it thinking I had a 50/50 chance, which was pretty awesome considering it was my first professional teaching interview, and it was for a position that I felt underqualified for. This is how amazing I am, and I hope you all realize this. (I also hope you all realize that I am not as cocky as I seem to be in this post.)

Okay, so I didn't get the job - yet. I have a second interview this Friday, this time with the Headmaster of the school. So, I obviously must have impressed the VP, who was a former English teacher.

I think it was really just the amazing outfit I pulled together. A white blazer always nails it.

Congratulations is necessary, lol. I'm obviously kidding. And I'm obviously going to blow this other interview because, oh c'mon, I'm me and I fuck everything up!

Even though I have a mountain-load of things I need to do today (damn you B.Ed classes and your leaving assignments to the last week of school) I am in the most amazing mood! I think I want wine and cheese for dinner.

current mood: jubilant

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Monday, April 16th, 2007
10:46 am - Feeling inadequate
Okay, okay. So, in the midst of putting together an application package for the Calgary Board of Education (which is late, might I add) I got a phone call from one of the private schools I applied to. They asked if I was interested in coming in for an interview this week. The position if Senior English teacher. I have little in-class English teaching experience, so I'm sort of freaking out. If I got the job, I'd be moving to Toronto, which I am certainly okay with. But, to be honest, private schools are crazy. You basically live and breathe school-life, during school and with extracurriculars. But it'd be fun, and I'm actually surprised that a private school is even interviewing me for a position that even I don't feel particularly qualified for. Drama, sure, that's my thing; English would be amazing to teach and really fun, but stressful. Maybe I just need to get my foot in the door.

So Thursday I'll be in Toronto. I feel like I need to buy a Power Suit, lol.

current mood: anxious

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Friday, March 2nd, 2007
8:59 am - Because Charlotte asked me to
It has been awhile, I know. I still check my LJ friends lists, I promise you that, so I am caught up in all of the day-to-day goings-ons with you, but haven't had much desire to update my own journal. So here is a brief summary.

- I started my last in-school placement February 12th, in a grade 7 classroom. I quickly realized that I'm really not too interested in teaching intermediate, but the program I'm in is amazing, I've never seen anything like it. It's called LEAP (Limestone Education Through the Arts Program) so everything is taught THROUGH the arts, even my math lessons. Right now they're working on Showcase, their "big" performance for the year. The kids have to audition to get into the program - visual artists, dancers, actors, musicians. The kids are playing "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" for instance, and it's amazing to watch. I haven't been teaching much, because they've been rehearsing, but it's such an arts-friendly environment - which is sort of alien to me.

- Today the buses and schools were closed, so I have the day off. I plan to finish watching season two of "Slings & Arrows" because I've been obsessive about it, and watching it when I get a free moment, which is actually rare. Freezing rain is weird, much weirder than snow days.

- March 10th I'm flying back to Windsor until April 6th, for my Alternate Practicum. Here at Queen's you have to do work outside of the traditional classroom. Some people I know are going to Guatemala, San Diego... I'm coming back to Windsor primarily for financial reasons. I'm supposed to be doing a theatre camp at the Capitol during March Break, but with everything I've heard about them going bankrupt, I'm getting antsy. The three weeks following the break I'm supposed to be touring a kid's show Rob and I devised. I sent out the faxes earlier this week, but I haven't heard anything back. Again, getting antsy.

- Add to the Alt. Prac. hub-bub is that I'll be in Windsor, Jordan will still be here. That = major poo.

- I got a job last week as one of two Coordinators for two camps here in Kingston, at Queen's. I'm very excited about it, and met my partner the other day, who seems really nice. The only "negative" part of the job: My superviser told us a story about the Coordinator last year who delivered a baby for an eighth-grader who did not know (or claims she did not know) she was pregnant. Out of the toilet. God help me if I have to do that.

- Last Saturday Christina, Jordan and I went to Toronto for a job fair for the Conference of Independent Schools. It was a riotous day, which went down something like this.

8:45 - Christina calls to make sure I'm awake. I am, but just got out of the shower. I'm always late.
9:15 - Christina arrives, we leave shortly after.
9:45 - Shoppers Drug Mart, to photocopy our resumes because BOTH of our printers kicked the bucket.
10:15 - Grand and Toy, because Shoppers photocopied turned out badly. Christina does not pay for her copies.
10:45 - On the road, after getting Tim Hortons.
12:45 - Try to merge onto DVP...Christina is in her car, I'm in mine with Jordan. Chaos.
1:05 - Arrive at the Ontario Science Centre parking. Christina, two cars behind me, runs up to my car, leaving her door completely open, to say she doesn't have cash (I knew this). I cover her.
1:10 - Tailgating outside, putting our resume packages together.
1:20 - Walk into job fair.
2:00 - Job fair ends. (It started at 10:00, which was when we planned to be there.)
2:10 - Buy $4 slushees.
2:20 - Sit in car eating slushees.
2:45 - Jordan calls his mother, who is visiting a friend in Toronto. Get directions.
3:45 - Get to destination, pick up Jordan's mom and her friend.
4:00 - Attempt to find cheesecake restaurant with someone who only take the subway.
4:05 - Success! Attempt to find parking.
4:20 - Sit down in tiny booth, ready to eat cheesecake.
4:50 - Was asked when Jordan and I would be getting married. Major blush.
5:30 - Leave cheesecake place, say goodbye to Christina, drop off guests.
6:15 - Go to Silver Snail, Jordan purchases cute pink Teeter I told him to get.
6:45 - Go into a vintage boutique to ask about a cat-ear toque, but no luck.
7:00 - Try to go to Magic Pony, closed.
7:00-8:00 - Drive around aimlessly, trying to get to Ikea.
8:10 - Find Ikea, go in. No purchases made.
8:45 - Eat 50-cent hot dogs.
9:00 - Drive home, where I almost fell asleep twice.
(A seriously amazing day.)

Well, I hope that all is well with you. Know that I am well.

current mood: awake

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Saturday, December 16th, 2006
12:34 pm - Apparently this is what I do with my weekend
Saw this a few months back - Jordan and I laughed our bums off, almost literally.


And then there is Talledega Nights. Enough said.


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Sunday, December 10th, 2006
3:41 pm - Catch-up, sort of
So, I am definitely ready for a break from all of the hustle and bustle of school at the moment. And to think I haven't even started my Christmas shopping -- tsk, tsk Nicole!

The school play I was helping with has come and gone, and now the classes I am teachng are getting stressful. My grade nine's are doing scenework from A Midsummer Night's Dream, and I've been teaching part-time with a grade twelve English class. My grade eleven's -- that is where my stress lies. I decided to do a children's theatre unit with them, in which we make ourselves into a little theatre company. Everyone has a part in the play -- Dickens' A Christmas Carol -- as well as a teachnical role, such as assistant director, costumes, lighting, etc. Well, next week we're supposed to be performing the play for elementary students. What was unforseen was the amount of kids wanting to come and see the show. We were hoping for two classes each performance, but each school basically wants to bring 100+ kids (keep in mind that this is a classroom production, in a small studio - not in an auditorium). So, I'm working out the kinks in regards to our audience, but the students are really into the whole theatre company idea. Overall, this round of practicum has been wonderful. Chances are this will be my last time in a high school because for my next round I'm hoping to get into an elementary school to see what that is like - just grades 7/8 though. I don't want to be wiping noses.

I have a project for one of my classes that I keep putting off, and now it's mid-afternoon on Sunday and yet I'm still avoiding the mountain of "to-do's" I have on my plate.

I'm still looking forward to the holidays, and being home for two whole weeks. I really do miss Windsor, especially at this time of year. I should take pictures of Kingston in the snow, it's like nothing else I've ever seen. Truly, a winter wonderland.

My birthday is on Thursday, and I'm not really excited. That's rare. Normally I'm bouncing off the walls by this point.

current mood: blah

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Monday, November 27th, 2006
8:32 am
Okay, so placement really isn't so horrible. However I'm teaching three classes - two drama, one English. The school play - A Midsummer Night's Dream - has been running me a bit ragged, but it goes up today. Next weekend I'll be able to sleep in.

And today I just don't feel like going to school. Just ten more minutes of sleep? Please?

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Sunday, October 15th, 2006
12:03 pm - Dead like me
Alive, and well, I promise.

It's been just over a month since Jordan got here, and yet I still managed to wait almost two months to update this thing. There really hasn't been all that much that has been going on, other than attending classes and realizing that some of those typical drama kids made it into a few of my classes. And since I really don't know them well, and hell, I don't know many people up here anyways and it's not like I'm here to make friends, they get open stares from me. When did I become so cynical? Maria, you've rubbed off on me, and I love you for that.

So yes, classes went well, and I started my placement in a Catholic high school two weeks ago. Although I've been running some acitivities and warmups, I'm actually starting a real teaching stint tomorrow. Movement and voice with a group of grade elevens and movement to music with grade nines. It's funny, you know, because even when you think they're little shits you're supposed to be nice, and my cynical side just wants to laugh in their faces and tell them they're not cool. That isn't mean, right? And when in the hell did I start writing like this?

There is more that has been happening, and I suppose that some of it is of relevance and importance. I just don't know if I have the patience to update anymore - when I read previous entries I get frustrated in my lack of ability to write and convey what's really going on in my head. But, dear friends, please know that I read all of my friends' entries. I love you all, and I comment when I feel the need. I wonder who's un-friended me due to my inactivity....

current mood: calm

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Sunday, August 27th, 2006
6:04 pm - An oh-so-cosmopolitan sort of a day.
As much as I enjoy Inside the Actors Studio the opening and closing music just drives me insane.

More updates to come as to my further adventures in Kingston, including feeling bohemian and falling asleep in Lake Ontario Park.

current mood: good

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Thursday, August 24th, 2006
9:04 pm - Here's hoping
Okay, so Kingston is a lovely city. Me, the drama student, let my melodrama get the best of me.

Tuesday I walked across the street to Kingston Centre with only the intention to go to the post office in the drug store; I decided to explore the surrounding area, including the YMCA. There I looked into a membership, to get a bit healthier, and nearly choked on their prices. It looks as though the gym provided to me by Queen's shall suffice, even if I have to drive to get there. Continued onward towards the west campus where I'll be attending classes - discovered to my delight a rather large FREE parking lot. Which ultimately means that I can drive to school everyday rather than having to take two buses, and can get up a wee bit later. Fabulous! Once I'd explored the hallways, I walked the block to Kingston Penitentary which is situated right on Lake Ontario. Also home to PAUL BERNARDO. How exciting? Settled myself across from the main university campus down the way, on the grass, and felt all nostalgic staring off onto the water of the Lake. For one reason or another (or perhaps it was because of an email sent to me by Maria) I imagined it to be the Canadian equivalent of Boston - without the rowers, though.

Wednesday I had a lazy morning, and went downtown in the afternoon. Had a late lunch at TANGO, a funky little tapas bar. Now, personally I enjoyed it much more than Chez Piggy - most interestingly, I enjoyed the feeling of both restaurants better than the Goose, but neither compared in service. I plan to apply after Christmas (my first semester is going to be Hell) because I'm a shoe-in. Wow, pretentious of me. Interestingly, both Chez Piggy and Tango offered Pelee Island wines for their house; so I sipped on a geurtztraminer and dined on a steak and brie sandwich with sweet potato frites. YUM. Continued exploring downtown, and in a few stores a part of me wanted to become a full-blown hippie. Patchouli. Billowy skirts. Strapless dresses. Big hoop earring. The girl clad in black capris and a trendy bright-orange top from Club Monaco must have looked funny in those stores - even my new glasses scream "mod." Mod fused with hippie - why not? I spent my evening with Harry Potter. The Goblet of Fire is my favourite, and I plan on holding it hostage from Blockbuster and having them charge my account.

Tomorrow I'd hoped to further my exploration, however, the building is doing repairs on the water in the morning. If I get going before 9am I can do as I please, and leave this mess of an apartment to be cleaned in the evening. Or I can go out for another cocktail. I could become an alcoholic before school's in - before leaving Kingsville I got six bottles of red wine, and a bottle of hypnotic. Apparently when someone moves away, they become alcoholics. I'm cosmopolitan, baby!

Wish my life was a little more like Sex and the City. Ohhhh, pathetic. Did I really just say that out loud? (I must admit, having a real Big in my life would be...cosmopolitan, to say the least.)
Adieu, friends.

current mood: hopeful

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