Thursday, February 25, 2010

Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon

It's been a crazy week and I can't believe that it's already Saturday! I'm not quite sure where the week went!

I really didn't have the most productive weekend. He of Many Sports Injuries was away, and so I had hoped to sort out my research and find sandals and a million other things. It didn't quite happen, because I spent Saturday morning at Makro, buying an office chair, and then spent most of Saturday afternoon constructing said chair. For the record, the guy at Makro said "It's really easy! Anyone can do it!". I'm pretty sure he lied. It was a mission! And I'm pretty good with screwdrivers and bolts and stuff! The chair is now in 1 piece though, and has yet to fall apart, which seems like a good sign!

I spent Saturday night at a Chinese New Year celebration in Cyrildene, with Sarah and Graham and Sarah's parents. It was really fun, and very interesting. All the Chinese restaurants along the road just put out tables into the street, and each restaurant has a set menu of 8 dishes. Everyone just sits around and watches the dragon making its way up and down the road and watching the fireworks. It took me ages to find the "fireworks" setting on my camera, and the finished products weren't too amazing, unless you look at them in a kind of "modern arty" sort of way...

I've spent enormous amounts of time at the vet where I work, because I had to organise stock-take. It actually went pretty well, all things considered - I think it had something to do with the cup of coffee that Kath bought me. I don't drink coffee, but I woke up on Tuesday morning with a huge headache and I had to be at work by 7:30am. I figured that the coffee probably couldn't make me feel any worse, and I was pretty amazed by how quickly the headache disappeared and how productive I became! I didn't even mind counting out whole bottles of tiny, tiny pills!

I am relieved to announce that I do still have a job. It was all a little touch and go in the last few weeks, because the other receptionist who works afternoons wasn't sure which afternoons she could work, and my hours aren't as flexible as they used to be now that all 2 of my lectures are in the afternoon. It's all been sorted out though, and I'm breathing a sigh of relief!

Finally, my research is coming along slowly - better slowly than not at all, I suppose. I'm look at the neuropsychological aspects of superstitions, which should be really interesting, given the diversity of cultures in South Africa. Before I can go any further with it though, I need to read 6 chapters for a meeting tomorrow, where I'm getting the 50 second year psychology essays that I have to mark! The topic is related to gender, and I have a sneaky suspicion that I'm going to be marking at least 45 essays on Caster Semenya...

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Valentine's Day

****WARNING: This post may induce nausea. But you probably want to read it anyway. C'mon - you know that you do! Just don't say that I didn't warn you!****

I know that it's a week after Valentine's Day, but I thought that I'd write this post anyway, for 2 main reasons: a) I was too busy during the week and b) He of Many Sports Injuries is away for the weekend on a work-meeting-thing near the Kruger National Park. I'm coping pretty well with him being away - I've been insanely productive, which has been awesome! And my airtime isn't taking too much of a knock either, because there only seems to be 1 tree which he can stand under and get cellphone signal, so contact has been somewhat limited.

I've never had a boyfriend on Valentine's Day. I met Justin on Valentine's Day and ended up dating him a couple of months later, but I've somehow never had a boyfriend when the 14th of February rolls around. I don't really mind. In fact, this year I was planning on having a dinner party with all my single friends to celebrate our "singletude". With He of Many Sports Injuries being in the picture though, the idea was obviously put on hold. Oddly enough, He of Many Sports Injuries has never had a girlfriend on Valentine's Day and that seems to be the reason why we both went a **little** over the top last weekend. In our defence, it was also a mini-celebration of him coming home from hospital and getting the all-clear from his neurologist after the strokes.

We started talking about what we wanted to do about 2 weeks before, and were both amused (and surprised) that we had had EXACTLY the same idea - i.e. romantic candle-lit dinner on He of Many Sports Injuries' patio. We thus opted to divide the labour - I would make dinner, and he would make dessert and set the table. I really got the easy part - I made a salad and an alfredo pasta dish which I know he loves. He, however, decided to be creative with the dessert and wanted to make creme caramel - a dish which is pretty advanced, by most baking standards! He did 4 practice runs - and ended up with exploded creme caramel all over his oven at one point. We eventually ended up at Pick 'n Pay on Valentine's Day, buying fruit salad and custard, just to avoid any more baking disasters.

Despite the dessert failure, he really did a good job with the table (he even bought candles!) and managed to keep the frogs and mosquitoes at bay (the frogs were cute though!). And he definitely out-did himself of the giftage front. ****WARNING: extreme nausea may follow!!!**** I got 40 red roses and 2 necklaces (because he couldn't choose between them. I love having an indecisive boyfriend!). And I got him... Wait for it... Bath towels. In my defence, he is a bachelor who owns nothing but towels with "Energade" written on them, and the new ones match his bath mats.

On the non-nauseating front, varsity is finally starting to pick up. I have a really nice supervisor and I'm getting started on my research, I will have 50 essays to mark next week (which will likely provide endless amusement!) and I'm getting into stats again. Aside from that, I'm swimming and running again (the evil cough is finally gone!) and the study is almost, almost done. And I'm considering starting a photo-blog, because I don't think I use my camera enough.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Hope Floats

I'm in a really strange mood today - and I'm not sure that it's a good thing. Despite going to bed early, I haven't been sleeping well - between the attack of the killer mosquitoes and the nocturnal prowling of my cat, I just seem to toss and turn for an hour or so before falling asleep. So, I'm feeling rather tired, and a little stiff and sore too, because I spent about 3 hours vacuuming the extremely dirty study carpet yesterday. The good news is that I now have a newly-painted study, with a very clean carpet, but the bad news is that I still have no research topic and I have to submit my ideas by Friday. I don't know why I just didn't get round to thinking about my research a little more. In between recovering from Honours, hay-fever, 'flu and then all the worrying about He of Many Sports Injuries and the strokes, research has kind of been put on the back-burner.

That is why I'm resorting to bribery this morning. I'm determined to come up with a potential research topic before my lecture this afternoon, and email potential supervisors as well. I'm also hoping to keep myself distracted until I hear from He of Many Sports Injuries, who has gone for a follow-up appointment with the neurologist. I have no idea why I'm feeling so bleak and uninspired today, but I suspect that it has something to do with me not sleeping well and being worried about my boyfriend and his near-death experiences. So, in an attempt to motivate myself, and feel a little better, here are 10 things that I'm looking forward to in 2010:

1) doing my Masters!
2) having Claire back in South Africa, even if it's just for the year
3) an April holiday at the beach with He of Many Sports Injuries
4) starting swimming and running again (especially now that my 'flu is gone)
5) my Masters neuropsychology course. Yes, I still like brains.
6) Valentine's Day. Yes, as lame and nauseating as it sounds. In my defence, I've never had a
boyfriend over Valentine's Day, which is why I'm looking forward to it.
7) going indieing and souping with Helen and her hat - and my new mascara!
8) graduation.
9) some sort of holiday in June or July. Please? Pretty please?
10) finishing my study - it's nearly done, and photos will follow soon!