Saturday, 22 May 2004

S'not exactly like home...

Wow, just getting over a major flu. And I mean major! Snot flying, phlegm gurgling, head aching, muscles screaming, fever at…well…fever pitch. I think the weather here is just something that I will never get used to. Bleh.

Well, now that I've cleared the many piles of tissue and tea mugs out of my way, I can concentrate on school. The summer semester has started very well indeed. I have 4 courses, and all seem to be interesting. The only course I have that looks like major trouble is an English grammar course that involves a lot of linguistic garbage that just trips me up and makes me cry. It's like the bully course on the playground. Maybe if I give it my lunch money I'll get an ok grade.

Besides the above necessity course, my other English this term is Shakespeare Romance and Tragedy. Egads and little fishes I love English! I miss it, and the crazy prof's that seem to be part and parcel of the whole department. My prof. for the Shakespeare course fits the profile. He says interesting things like “the sound of a toilet flushing is one of the best sounds in the world” or “Hamlet's suicide soliloquy is interesting as he's worried about the afterlife. I mean maybe he'll follow in the family business and become a tortured ghost like his dad.” Too brilliant. But then he also says things like “ignorance does not bother me, but choosing to stay in ignorance sickens me.”

My 2 folklore courses are very interesting and great as always, and I've been talking to some of the sessional instructors about grad school, and courses, etc. and receiving some fantastic advice. Such good advise that I may even be able to finish grad school a tad sooner than planned if I can follow through on a few grand schemes. We'll see what happens. But I do so love scheming. And plotting. And capers. Not the little peppery things, but actual escapades.

Currently looking for a house for July 1 st . I'll give notice in a week, and so will Leslie and Nick, and the three of us will find a place and set up house. Then, in August/September, Gillian and Anya, our fourth and fifth, will come back and we will be a happy (though probably dysfunctional) little family. I think it will be good times, and I know it will save money.

Alright, that is all. I know this is a little lame, but that's what happens when you're not used to freezing temperatures one day, and muggy tropics the next, with the wind as the only constant. Illness has sapped much of the life out of me. Bleh.

Now, hopefully by the end of the month I will get pictures posted. They should have been posted a while ago, but I'm lazy and my brother is a busy man.

Viva la Vancouver!! How I miss thee, Lotus Land!

Your still sniffling, yet ever battling, Venus. VF

Sunday, 9 May 2004


“When certain kinds of winds begin to blow throughout the world, hospital admissions, suicides, and crime rates skyrocket. One country-Switzerland- even accepts the blowing of the ‘Foehn' during the commission of a crime as mitigating evidence in court. And the Mistral in the area of Provence is said to cause madness at certain times of year.

These ‘notorious' desert and sea winds are also linked to minor illnesses and malaise epidemics. Victims' claims range from sleeplessness, irritability, tension, migraines, nausea, palpitations and hot flashes with sweating to chills to tremor, vertigo, swelling, breathing difficulty, and frequent intestinal movement. In addition, elderly persons are affected with depression, apathy, and fatigue…”

A quote from a source on ions in the air. Why would this possibly be included in an entry here? Why, Newfoundland apparently should include “wind” as admissible in court as well.


The wind has been howling around like a bat out of hell, and there were snow flurries last night. Everyone says that on the Victoria Day weekend (here called May two four weekend) that there is traditionally a snowstorm. August is literally the only month you can count on for no snow, and yet it's still windy as a politician at election time! I actually plugged my ears with toilet paper to no avail. I could still hear the wind! The wind! ( I suppose it could have been the dull roaring of my ever dying brain cells…) I could buy proper earplugs, but then I'd never hear my alarm or get up for school and work. As Spooky ghost used to say: Coises!

I really feel quite mad. It's 6:30 in the am, and I have been up for, oh, let's say…FOREVER! I'm sure I must have slept a bit last night, but the wind actually keeps a lot of people up. There's also a lot of freaks here who actually like the wind. And who like snow, and who like to snowmobile, and who like barren wastelands. Although, the wind does freak some people out as there are a lot of wooden structures that for some ungodly reason are connected to each other. So, in case of fire…might as well sweep an entire city block instead of one building at a time. Newfoundlanders are efficient that way.

Went for blood tests on Friday--the vampire/nurse took 5 vials!! What the hell do they need 5 vials of blood for…a snack?? Am now thinking that I'm dying of some horrible blood cancer and no one is telling me… Anyways, one of the ladies in my building, Diane, went with me (Yes, I'm a huge wimp and she had to hold my hand and I had a tear or two…so what!) and we walked through Bowring Park to get to the lab. On the way back home, the wind was really whipping around, and I was looking at the trees and general area. A lot of places here are really nice and full of trees, etc. But the wind takes its toll in a lot of areas. There is no topsoil to speak of, so growing things is difficult here, and many of the trees are stunted and twisted. Plus, no trees grow very tall or thick, as there is an extremely shortened growing season. So, I walked home in silence and suddenly understood, with perfect, absolute clarity, why Heathcliff was so bloody crazy! I felt like yelling “Catherine!!” and then charging off a cliff. I could actually see hauling off and punching someone out when the wind gets howling. I wonder if any non-Newfoundlanders have blamed the wind for violence? Let me set the bar.

In other, non-wind related news (as if there is any other kind at the moment…) I start my summer semester on Monday! Woo hoo, back to school. I'm actually really looking forward to it. I have 2 Folklore and 2 English courses, both my majors, so it should be a fairly stimulating semester. Plus, Nick and Leslie and I are going to give our notice at the end of this month, and look for our house for July 1 st . Should be nice, and will definitely save cash.

Have actually cleaned about 50-60% of my apartment. Considering that I have so little stuff here, it seems astounding that my place could get so pig-sty-ified, and yet it does. I should just open the windows and let the wind blow all my shit out the doorway. Had a wonderful time on my hands and knees scrubbing the tub with bleach…hmmm, the taste of bleach! If only Crystle were here, she would scrub my tub and probably (though weirdly) enjoy it. Although, I did get to sort papers, and I love that. So I guess I'm just as weird. Today, when it's a little more day-ish, I'm going to finish my dishes and tidying, change my sheets and flip my mattress, and vacuum and scrub floors. Yep, you're tuning in to read my cleaning list. That's what the Newfoundland Mistral does to you.

Ok, and I watched some of ‘Hannibal' last night and it kind of freaked me out. But I also watched ‘Shakespeare in Love' which made me cry. And some SNL which made me laugh. I think I need mood-stabilizers…or less TV.

I also need to say:


Yep, it's that time of year again. Ah, that wonderful time of year where, due to my procrastination and thinned down wallet, I show my mum how ungrateful I am by sending her nothing! I will call her however, and probably talk about the wind…

Actually, I tried to float the idea that my mum should really be getting something for my bro and I—as without her children, she wouldn't even be a mother. I mean, it makes sense to me, but I don't think that brainstorm will take off at the Hallmark company. So, to all the mom's out there…uh…well...high five!

Anyhow, the wind sounds like it's died down for 45 seconds (almost precisely) so I'm going to try and get a wee bit more sleep, and then get up and clean. Boo yeah! My life is so thrilling here; it almost makes me wonder why I don't think of relocating here permanently. Oh yeah, BECAUSE IT'S FREAKING NEWFOUNDLAND!!

*sob, whimper, sniffle* If any of you were here right now, you'd hear the creak and crack of my poor, tired, stiff body as it slowly and painfully curls up into the foetal position, and the sounds of my whimpering as I hold my ears and stare-wide eyed-at the wall rocking back and forth…back and forth.

Alright…the wind is back, but I'm still going to bed for a while. I'll think of the sweet thoughts of Vancouver rain, and the smell of the Pacific, and the hope that a small outbreak of Scarlet Fever that causes sporadic loss of hearing. Of course it would never crap out during class, or vampire movie marathons, so it would be aaaaall good!

The wind…the wind. (spoken like Marlon Brando in ‘Apocalypse Now')