Monday, March 31, 2008

Sleepless in SLC

Am I the only one who can't take those two-wheeled people movers
(scooters?) serious? I just had an airport police whip by me on one at
about 25 mph. No joke, I could feel the wind as he breezed by. He's
probably off to deal with a terrorist. My life is in danger and I
can't stop giggling.

I need sleep.

Monday, March 17, 2008

i think it was the high heels

a quick update and then i promise i'll be done talking about the gmat. that is, unless, they really did make a mistake and i didn't score as high as they said i did-and i have to take it all over again. in other words, i freaking rocked it.

a few tips for test takers: study, study, study. you won't miss your social life as much as you'll miss that $250 and the celtics/jazz game the second go round. sleep, sleep, sleep, then get up early on the day of the test so that you are fully awake and alert by the time you get there. wear a power outfit; basically whatever it is in which you feel most confident-like, high heels for example. eat a good breakfast, have roommates who leave you empowering notes all over the house (such as "you're so going to do above average on this test!"), and friends who will bring you "test survival kits" full of brain food, send you annoying hallmark ecards, and one who will talk you off the ledge every single day.

most importantly, pray, pray, pray. make sure that you do all that you can and then ask heavenly father to make up the difference because, well, he will.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

an affair to end

being a huge opponent to secret relationships, i'm somewhat ashamed to make the following confession. if you haven't seen me around for a while it's probably because i've been involved with someone since about the beginning of december. this is a relationship of which some of you may be aware, but the intensity of which only my roommates understand. his name is kaplan. he's smart and interesting and has a lot of potential to get me where i want to go. he's been my constant companion for a long time now and though i've learned a lot from him over the past few weeks, i'm planning to end it all on saturday, hopefully for good this time. wish me luck.

Friday, March 07, 2008

blarney and friends

alright already. i'm back from ireland. does anyone care about that anymore, or has too much time passed that your anticipation of my recap from the emerald isle has all but diminished completely? well too bad, i'm blogging about it anyway.

first off, the trip was A-MAZING. it took me a little while to understand why everything was so expensive and so nice. up to now, almost all of my international travel has been to central america, or other developing countries, so it didn't occur to me right off the bat that i might not have to take my own toilet paper into the public restrooms. the wake up call was brutal, and came in the realization of the fact that my 6 euro breakfast yogurt (6 euros, really?) was actually costing me 9 bucks. breakfast: $9, lunch: $15, finally taking a trip to europe: priceless. wah wah.

rather than post a million pictures that would take 1.75 years to upload and then another .65 years to format- only to have them publish differently than i intended, i've put together an album with short captions to almost every picture. should you feel inclined to look at these 97 photos (this is pared down from about 365 that were taken on the trip), you can find them here. as i mentioned, i've included captions of what i would probably say to you about the picture if we were looking at them together.

and now, for a brief..ahem...rundown of the trip:

day 1: we landed in shannon at around 6 am, got our car, and tried our best to adjust to the no sleep drive through the dark on the other side of the car and the other side of the road. luckily, irelanders have fabulously marked roads, and various castles and other ruins to use as landmarks on your journey. we found ourselves in limerick right around sunrise. it was so beautiful. since we weren't able to check into our hotel right away, we decided to continue driving south toward the ocean. 2 hours later we found ourselves in killarney with very little will to go on. we ate breakfast, turned around and headed back. another 2 hours and we were pulling up to the manor house of our gorgeous hotel, the adare manor, and checking into our townhouse. a few hours nap and we were ready to hit the green. we took a carriage ride around the manor, toured the building, and received our first taste of irish hospitality. really, they were so good to us there- i never even had to pretend to be from canada! that night we went to a local pub, which turned out to be surprisingly empty. no one talked to us until we were leaving- one of the (very drunk) young men at the bar shouted after us, "wait! please don't leave!" like i said, real irish hospitality.

day 2: church. the branch in limerick was a quick drive away and unfortunately we relied to heavily on to be accurate. we ended up at church an hour early. no biggie, we met the sister missionary of the missionary couple at that branch and had a good chat. still jet lagged and now having spent nearly 5 hours at church, we decided to head back to our hotel for another day of rest and relaxation. the day was too tranquil to go on about it, but suffice it to say it was just as a vacation should be.

day 3: begin the marathon days of the trip. we headed out early (at least by vacation standards) to tour bunratty castle. see pictures for more detail. after that, we continued on to the cliffs of moher (a.k.a. the cliffs of insanity in the princess bride), and subsequently my favorite part of the whole trip. for some inexplicable reason we were blessed with plenty of sunshine and blue sky on this, the most crucial day of our adventure. i'm sure the cliffs still would have been beautiful under a sky of gray, but they were absolutely astonishing in the bright sunlight. i can't accurately describe my love for this place so i won't, but please go there if you're ever in ireland.

day 4: and day 2 of the marathon days, after another full irish breakfast, we headed back to the airport to hop a jet over to london for a day and a half. we arrived in the late afternoon and wandered around a bit before the general wear and tear of the trip forced us into the local mcd's for a coke zero (from the fountain- they have it everywhere!) and some fries. hey, guess what? our measly american dollars are worth even less in london. 4 pounds ($8) each later we were on our way to find our hostel, dump our bags, and see a bit more of london. the hostel, called the menninger, was located right across the street from the museum of natural history. first of all, i've never seen such a cool and huge building, and second, i didn't know there was enough natural history in london to fill such a structure. notably, they were holding fashion week there at the same time. how fashion is tied to natural history i'm not sure, but who am i to argue? anyway, nat and i headed back out into the crowds to find our way to the theater where we saw wicked. it was my first time and i loved it so much i very nearly cried. ok, i did cry.

day 5: the beginnings of the plague kick in. three out of four of us got sick the night before. how esther escaped the infiltration of germs in our private hostel room is beyond me, but somehow she got lucky. i'm not sure how i got the plague exactly; maybe it was when i fell into the moat at the castle...or maybe it was when that rat bit my face...or maybe it was just the flu, which is more likely i guess. nevertheless, we'd come that far and weren't going to let some stupid virus stop us from enjoying london. together we boarded a double decker bus and began our tour around the city. we. saw. everything. it was the perfect way to spend the afternoon and we were able to get on and off the bus at our leisure. big ben, westminster abby, buckingham palace; it was all very surreal and fantastic and i can't wait to go back sometime when i'm not hopped up on nyquil.

day 6 we were back in ireland for the grand finale. poor mary spent the day in bed, esther struck out on her own for some site seeing around town, and natalie and i did what anyone else would do- we went to the mall! ridiculous? you may think that until you see our awesome euro-style coats and scarves, and many other goods. and listen up family, don't knock it or you won't get your presents, capish?

day 7: back to the airport and 8 hours later we land in heavy snowfall in boston. everyone on the plane cheered upon landing, which i couldn't figure out. were they cheering for the pilot? were they cheering for the snow? were they cheering because i made it through the flight without throwing up? actually, i slept for nearly the entire flight, which is what good drugs and a sleepless night will do for ya.

so that's pretty much it. actually, no it's not. there were a million tiny details of the trip that made it so amazing. if you'd like to read/see more, you can do so here, here, here, here, and here- many thanks to nat for her fantastic blogging prowess, and thanks for making this trip happen. not to get too serious at the end of this lengthy post, but i have to say that i'm truly grateful for the blessing of a good job, good friends, and an all around great life.

with that, i'll end before i get any further inta ta wee hours of ta mornin.

Monday, March 03, 2008

this weekend the criddles and i ventured out into the wild, or rather, the contained wild, with a trip to the franklin park zoo. what was supposed to be another nor-easter day actually turned out to be quite nice, and the animals were all up and about and pretty active. i think it's safe to say that we, along with the other 12 patrons who dared to brave the winter weather, had a great time. behold the lion king crew below! and, and, and, my first time posting video, yay! they are short, and boring, but even more boring without sound, so don't bother watching them if you can't listen.



uh, zazu?

no wait, zazu...?

and the best quote of the day award goes to preston for the following:

"stealing's okay as long as you say 'yoink'."