Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Q & A

Q: What do you do when one of your best friends from high school is getting married in California during a transitional time in your life when you have no cash, no time off, and cannot even afford to go to cousins' weddings on the same (East) coast that you're living on?

A: All things being equal, you sadly check the "regretfully declines" box and put the reply card in the mail, then exchange emails with said friend, informing him of your disappointing rsvp that is on the way.

Q: So what happens when that same friend sends an email back, offering what he calls a Friend Fellowship, whereby his parents have offered to pay for your airline ticket, since he really wants you at his wedding, and furthermore, the ticket will be from Friday night to Sunday afternoon so that you don't have to miss work?

A: All things being equal, you call your sister in California to see whether her extended family may be able to assist with the rest of the pragmatic logisticals--transport, accommodations, etc--and then, when assured of your family "in"-ness, you accept the generous offer, realizing that at this point, there's really no other choice.

In other words, I'm headed to northern Cali the weekend of July 28th to attend Brian's wedding.
It truly marvels me how God keeps allowing this rare friendship to continue.

Sunday, July 08, 2007

Time to be Tagged!

Mrs. Bear has tagged me for a fun little meme. And since I don't have to be studying with every spare minute anymore (I love this!) here we go!

A picture of now, between past and future.

1. a. Describe your outfit. Hand-me-down (from my younger sister Alvie) orange and white striped blouse with orange embroidered flowers along the front buttons, TAC grab-box khaki shorts that still fit in summertime, black and orange teevas, orangy-brown bead earrings.

b. What associations does the main color evoke? Orange. Since it's kind of a light peachy orange, and the fabric is also really light, this orange says cool and breezy.

c. Is there a memory associated with that outfit (or part of
I bought these teevas right before my memorable first-and-last annual Utah river trip with EC. They have seen plenty of wear, but still are so sturdy and super-comfortable. The shorts have been worn for many summer hikes since I grabbed them in May of 2001. And the shirt just reminds me of my sister everytime I put it on!

2. a. Are you listening to music? Yes. I'm at Colin's lab (because he has about an hour of work to do) and I put the Celtic station on his computer's yahoo "launchcast" radio.

b. Was this intentional? I intentionally put on music because I knew I didn't have to study, and it doesn't bother him over where he's doing his experiments. I like the Celtic station--it's everything from calming music to Irish pop, and this is a unique opportunity to hear things I can't hear on the local radio.

c. What does the music make you remember?
It doesn't necessarily make me remember anything, until a question like this makes me think about it, then it becomes a stream of consciousness memory. I suppose the classical Celtic music with its wind instrumentals makes me think of rolling hills, which I see whenever I go on cross-country road trips, which makes me remember the green summer I spent in Kentucky, which makes me think of my former Clinical Instructor who just had a baby in March, which makes me remember that I have a lot of phone calls and letters to catch up on now, including that patient up in Massachusetts, and the Smilllies up there--oh, shoot I never sent Tess that peanut butter cookie recipe....etc.

3. a. Describe the objects within arm's reach. Hmmm... I'm at Colin's desk, so ...lots of scientific papers. For example, here is an excerpt from a paragraph I just looked down and started reading: "For analysis of meianocyte differentiation, dorsal neural plate explants were isolated from somite stage 10 quail embryos as described for equivalent chick explants."
Also, my laptop is right here; I brought it in order to post pictures from it online. Then my sunglasses, car keys, and cell phone, a few half-full water bottles, scissors, batteries, a stapler, cell diagrams taped to the wall above the desk, a box of envelopes, a contact lens case (Colin puts in his contacts whenever he goes over to the gym to play basketball), and speakers that are emitting Celtic sounds!

b. Choose one object and tell where you acquired it. My laptop was issued to me when I started PT school, and I effectively "bought" it by completing the program, so now I get to keep it! IF I had failed out or dropped out, I would have been required to buy it with real money. So there was another incentive to work hard and finish my degree!

c. On the whole, are the objects new (memory blanks) or old (memory filled)? Since most of these objects are not mine, and since I cannot understand most of what surrounds me right now (there are tons of papers piled up) then I would have to conclude that they are definitely memory (and mind!) blanks.

4. a. What room are you in? I am in the cubby where Colin's desk is, in Dr. Majesky's Lab, on the eighth floor of the MBRB (Medical BioResearch Building) on the campus of UNC.

b. To what extent is it yours? Not at all. And no, thank you!

c. What kind of memories will you have in the future of this room? Someday I hope to be in this cubby, helping Colin pack up all of his belongings, because he will be graduated and moving on to greater things! Until then, I will continue to drop in while everyone is working, occasionally sharing in their ice-cream breaks or non-work related conversations. He works with some of the sweetest people--I would never have thought that some of these Asian women were researchers; they're so kind and quick to smile. Not at all the high-powered, stressed, super-concentrated atmosphere I pictured.

4. What were you doing before starting this post, and what would you like to do next? I was updating my blog and Flickr account with some recent pictures before I started this post. Next, I will change my clothes so that I'm wearing a long skirt, and Colin and I will head off to Sunday (evening) Mass.

So now I will tag Portia (because I got to her before Nutmeg!), EC (since I still haven't been able to connect to her in the past month or so!), and Alvie (because maybe--just maybe--this will get a new post out of her?)

At home in NC

This past week, I've been working on starting a new job, as well as moving into a new house:

Heather and I will be renting the main part of the house. Below us, through that small door to the far right of the driveway, there is a small single apartment, which will be occupied by another young woman, a dental student. She hasn't moved in yet, or even seen the place, but I'm sure things will work out just fine. Dental school is tough--she probably won't be making a lot of noise!!
Through the other door on the left side of the driveway is the basement, with a washer, dryer, and plenty of storage space. My bedroom is directly above the driveway.
One thing I love about this house--aside from the quiet and safety of the neighborhood--is all of the natural light that comes in during the day.

Below is a picture of the living room that faces the back of the house. You can only see about half of it in this shot, but the windows continue along the entire back wall there.

And here is my room, small but with a lot of natural light, and surrounded by trees filled with birds that wake me up at dawn! There's also a nice breeze that gets going in there, since the windows slide open to make a whole vertical half of them open.

The hospital is about a 3-mile bike ride which is mostly uphill (which means that it's mostly downhill after a long day of work!). And Colin lives about 3 miles from the hospital in the opposite direction, so we're about 6 miles apart now. That works out okay: he can make the downhill ride to my place for dinner after work, and my bike rack has become a permanent fixture on my car so that I can then give him a ride home later on.

I get my own desk at work, which I find very exciting! It's also a lot of fun to introduce myself to people as a physical therapist. Wow. Crazy.

And so life in the real world begins.