Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Back to home cooked meals, family, Tim Horton's coffee, friends, familiar places, Tim Horton's coffee, my own car, regular sized coin and bills, same time zone as everyone else,Tim Horton's coffee...

It's good to be home again and it's odd because it feels like Australia was almost a dream that I just woke up from so I never really left home. Then again at other moments it feels like I've been gone for a year instead of about 4 months.

I'm taking a few more days off from blogging...mainly because I cannot drag my sister away from the computer as easily as before and because mind is on 'hibernate' mode and I'm really not thinking of anything else but what I'll have for lunch, who I'll go out to see and what movie I can watch. I was given a set of documentaries and found a Noam Chomsky book I've been meaning to read, but intellectual stimulation seems so unnecessary right now. Not when there is homemade ice cream and old Bollywood movies in the house...
Sunday, August 19, 2007
I am bored.

I am bored of waiting.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport and not looking forward to a 16 hour flight.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport and not looking forward to a 16 hour flight, but excited to be going home.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport and not looking forward to a 16 hour flight, but excited to be going home, but wish I had longer than 3 weeks.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport and not looking forward to a 16 hour flight, but excited to be going home, but wish I had longer than 3 weeks and am paying a lot for hotspot internet.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport and not looking forward to a 16 hour flight, but excited to be going home, but wish I had longer than 3 weeks and am paying a lot for hotspot internet as well as everything else at the airport.

I am bored of waiting at the Sydney airport and not looking forward to a 16 hour flight, but excited to be going home, but wish I had longer than 3 weeks and am paying a lot for hotspot internet as well as everything else at the airport.

I am going to go check in :D
Friday, August 17, 2007
I'm in disbelief over the idea that my first semester of law in Australia is over. I just wrote my last exam yesterday and after sighing with relief, the adrenaline that I had worked up over the anticipation, anxiety and exhaustion wore out and I was completely drained - but still very relieved. It seems to me that the days are flying by so much quicker these days and although sometimes I think that it's good in the sense that I can get on with the process of law school more quickly and go home during breaks, it also saddens me to realize that we're having difficulty holding on to moments within our days.

It seems like I was just preparing to come here and right now I'm sitting amongst three open suitcases packing up my residence room to move off campus and to also leave for home on Monday morning. It's that feeling you have when you wait for something for so long and the anticipation grows, but the moment passes by so quickly that the afterthought seems longer than the wait up to it.

I'm going to be busy with moving and traveling back home over the next few days, and right now I'm just avoiding looking at the pile of clothes, paper and odds and ends because sleeping seems like a much better alternative to packing and moving! But I have about a 20+ hour flight for that so I'll save it for then.

I'm excited to go home and possibly meet more bloggers(?). Just the idea of mom's cooking, my old bed, lovely friends, and Tim Horton's coffee! I just hope the three weeks that I am home will be slow enough to enjoy :)
Sunday, August 12, 2007
In the midst of exam angst, a friend asked me if I had any movies I could give or lend her. I had a couple DVDs on hand so I offered those. She asked me if I had any on my computer that I've downloaded. This caught me by surprise, or amusement rather, since she is one of the very few people I know who makes it a point to say that she doesn't download music, she buys it from iTunes because she says "I just think it's right to only buy them, y'know?"

Sure, I know. Not only is file sharing of copyrighted material is illegal, the morality of taking another's creative work without compensation is a big issue for many people. But this girl was perfectly okay with downloading movies from torrent files, Limewire and other sources (she had told me she'd been searching/downloading some last week) and asking others for the same.

How is a movie any different from a song!? Same concept, different medium! My "WTF?" expression didn't have any effect because she seemed to not see the connection between her request for downloaded movie and her previous holier-than-thou speech about always buying her songs. When asked to explain her phenomenal distinction and policy, even she had no idea why - "yeah I know, it's weird. But y' do you have any?"


What are your opinions on downloading/file-sharing?

p.s. FYI - if you live in Spain, by any slim chance, I'd comment anonymously if you have a pro-downloading opinion since it's a civil (and possibly criminal) offense to file-share copyrighted material now that the legislation has been passed :)
Tuesday, August 07, 2007
Exam Preparation Checklist:

_x_ Red Bull (sugarless, chilled - 2 cans for every 8 hours of study)

_x_ Oreos (original or double stuffed)

_x_ Twix chocolate bar(s)

_x_ Bottled water (chilled and room temperature)

_x_ Almonds (for the healthy option)

_x_ Red seedless grapes (also healthy but fun to munch)

_x_ Two pillows (for sitting on the bed with my back to the wall at home)

_x_ not-too-thick-not-too-thin blanket (for at home studying)

_x_ comfy track pants and hoodie

_x_ colourful highlighters

__ Textbooks (note to self: remove plastic wrap on all books)

_x_ Post-it sticky notes

_x_ laptop

__ prescribed computer wear glasses (note to self #2 - find prescribed computer wear glasses)

_x_ headphones (to drown out the unnecessarily chatty girls sitting in front of me)

_x_ "24" season 4 DVD (for my "break time")

_?_ Lecture notes (missing lecture #6-8...?)

__ Brain

_x_ Sense of sheer terror and dread of exams

_x_ Realization that sleep can no longer be a necessity


Sunday, August 05, 2007

Today it just hit me that I am really missing my little sister growing up while being away. I just saw some pictures of her that were taken today and comparing that to just a few months ago when I was home, she seems so much older! I didn't think 8 year olds could hit growth spurts like that in 3-4 months! She just looked much more mature and different and it's bothering me so much.

I haven't seen her since I got here since their webcam does not work and no one's had time to get a replacement so the change seems so sudden. My mom said she'd gotten taller, but I guess because changes in your face are so gradual that people you see every day don't notice.

She and I are about 16 years apart - I always knew there'd come a time where my brother (3 years younger than me) and I would be off living our lives and she'd be on her own. And for some reason I almost feel guilty. Like I should be there in her house to play with her and be bored with her, especially now that she's on summer vacation. Despite there being 4 other people in the house right now (parents, brother and my grandmother), she's just as alone since everyone is busy. They make time for her as best as they can, but it's so different from when my brother and I were little.

Back then we'd have each other to annoy and play with when we were bored and our parents had more time. But both my parents run their own businesses so there's always something to be done and their working hours can be all over the place. And my brother is moving out next month to start a Masters program in downtown Toronto.

By the time I'm done this program she'll be a little over 10 years old and I feel like she's growing up without me, other than on the phone. My brother and I have had such a big influence on each other's lives and I'm afraid we won't get to have the same bond with her.

This is not a whining fest about how unfair life is - I'm grateful for this opportunity for my life to be here to study, but sometimes I wish I had stayed home just for her sake.

(the picture on the top left is of my dad and sister at the beach when they came down here to Australia with me in May)


Wednesday, August 01, 2007
"Hi, you've reached 416-xxx-xxxx...."

I have no explanation for it, but I'm incapable of leaving a message on an answering machine in one try. Maybe it's the availability of that "erase and re-record" option after you've pressed "#" that causes me to fumble my message the first (second, third, sometimes fourth) time around because I know I can start over if I forgot to throw in some information or I just sounded weird.

"Sorry, I'm not here to take you're call at the moment...."

Though when we call someone it's obvious we'd rather speak to that person right away than leave a message, but after that third ring when we know we're likely to hear their voice come up and ask for you to leave a message, I tense up and start racking my brain to come up with some coherent stream of words to be put together in a casual and clear message.

"Please leave me a detailed message..."

I use the basic who, what, where, when, how and why to sort out my thoughts before that tone goes off. Still I'm caught off guard and end up winging the message with a lot of suttering, mumbling and 'um' and 'annndd' and other filler words.

" the tone. Beep"

Oh crap, what did I need to say again? Oh right... "Ahem...Hi! This is AKA, I was calling in regards to... (who did I dial again? Ohh right.) um, I do need to hear back from you a.s.a.p. (shoot, should've said "as soon as possible", sounds better) please call me back at 905 (dammit wrong country!!!)..I mean, sorry, 042......Thank you (should I throw in a have a nice day? Why not, maybe they're having a bad one)...Have a good day (nice! I meant to say nice...ah well) ."

And when I do get through that message I have the urge to go back and listen to the jumble of sentences I've left on that poor soul's voice mail. As the playback starts I start editing my message for things I've left out and other things I didn't need to say. Then comes attempt #2. "Ok," I say to myself, "just get it all in with one shot then just HANG name, why I'm calling, and my number, it's easy! Aaaaand..Go!"

I'm not exaggerating when I say that about 3 days ago I was leaving a message for a potential hiring manager and I had to re-record my message Eight times. A few times my voice sounded squeaky. Once I forgot to put in my name. I started coughing at the beginning of another. Then a few times I didn't sound confident enough. Then in another I didn't sound friendly enough. Finally I blurted out a message (I had enough rehearsals after all) and hung up quickly before my finger had the chance to choose the option to review my message. I still haven't heard back from her...maybe one more try would've helped?

(You think that's bad? I haven't told you what I go through to set up my own voicemail...)