Monday, September 28, 2009

All is right with the world again

I type this from Biruk's computer, sitting in my 2 bedroom suite.
The computer loaded up just fine this time and the wireless internet is working again.

Now I am happy about the prospect of finding a new apartment again, instead of dreading it.
I will get to control the temperature!
The main floor of the house, where the owner lives is where the heat controls are. And since he was at work all day; I was freezing! And going outside in Mary-Poppins-like wind didn't seem a much better option, either.

I should be catching up on my homework, since the internet and computer troubles today set me back. But instead, I am stuffing myself with pizza. The perfect meal after working out, right? I can do my homework tomorrow. I'm celebrating going the entire day without needing a nap!
Had I mentioned before that I was anemic?
Biruk, who takes care of me so well got me vitamins with iron. And now, for the first day in a week, I have managed to be like a normal adult instead of a toddler. My running distance isn't up to where it was before, but that will come. Staying up til midnight? I feel that that in itself is an accomplishment.
I am in much better spirits now.

I feel that I'm perhaps addicted to the internet; if it's down, I'm freaking out, if it works I'm fine. I might need an intervention.
How about a month being away from easy access to technology? Sounds like a plan.

Today wasn't good.

My computer is really old and recently the internet stopped working.
I take online courses. I'm finishing my degree through online courses.
But it was okay, because Biruk has a computer which has internet access which I was using (much to the dislike of his roommates, bceause I took the computer away from them).

Now, his computer is being weird. Is weird when a computer won't start? Won't load up?
I guess that just sucks for me.

So I'm in the library.
Guess what? They don't have any word programs. Just internet. That's great.

And I have two months to find an internship.
And I'm moving to a new apartment in November.

Wow... someone want to trade me lives right now?

Friday, September 25, 2009

September snap shot

I recently discovered that I am taking a course I don't need- Corrections.
There are about 7 courses in the field of criminal justice offered online through my school and I need to take 6 of them (2 are completed, so I need to take 4). So, I just signed up for the next one, assuming it was needed.
Nope. Is the only class not required.
Which doesn't make sense to me. If I am studying justice and ministry; for chaplaincy, counseling offenders or to work with programs that work with offenders, chances are it will be in a correctional setting.
I had to take American Policing, which is less connected to my field of service than corrections is.

After I got over my initial frustration at myself I remembered that I am already half way completed the course, so why stop now? And, I am enjoying it and learning a lot; required or not, it will be helpful for my education. And education is the ultimate goal? That and a degree that will help me get a job in my chosen field.
But, I would rather not take a course I don't need the last year of my schooling.

It's been an interesting week. I've received phone calls at all times of night and day from the same two brothers. Both good news and bad news and some that I promised to keep confidential. Although, the phone calls are long distance from province and across the ocean. I haven't lived in Winnipeg (lived and worked there) in two years, haven't seen some of these guys in three years, and still they call, even from other continents. I still get letters from them. I wonder if it is a life-long friendship or contined ministry? Both?
And, although I thought I had no connections in Edmonton, except Biruk and his friends, I guess I do. Once, when I was walking down the sidewalk I ran into someone who I used to play soccer with. I have no idea what his name is, but that's alright.
Sadly, I've not found anywhere to play a casual game of soccer, all I find are competitive leagues which segregate men and women and ages and levels. Boo!
Also, on my walk home the other day a nice black car stopped at the light and this pretty girl in the passenger seat stares at me.
And then the window rolls down and the driver leans across her to yell 'hello' at me. He's dressed nice for an interview for a job. I would have hardly recognized him- I didn't; he recognized me.


Biruk loves being back at school. He talks about his teacher all the time; how cheap he is and the funny stories he tells. Some evenings we go to a coffee shop together and do our homework; he usually studies more than the homework that he is given. I don't think I've done that- studied. I just do my homework and then cram before a test.

I've been settling into my new place. Slowly. I still have a few things that I need, like a bathroom rug and a drying rack for dishes, which we're going to pick up this weekend. My new couch- sorry, our new couch and loveseat arrived last week. I'm so happy that now I have furniture!

And, we're going to Ethiopia in about two months! I'm so excited! The weather here is still beautiful, with the leaves slightly changing. But I'm sure it will be very cold after two months. And I haven't left North America since... well, that was that short time in Haiti, but isn't that still in North America?
So, I haven't been anywhere in the continent of Africa in three years. And I've been hearing about this country for three years, so I want to experience it for myself now.
I get to have 13 months this year, as Ethiopia doesn't acknowledge 31 days in any months, but keeps a tiny month at the end of the year with 5 days in it.
And, I get two Christmases; December and January.
And I get to meet Biruk's other sisters, whom he hasn't seen for about 6 years.

So now I'm going to work on my classes, one of which I don't need.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Italy and China


The view from the back of my apartment.





I just got a YMCA membership for 10.00 (CND) per month. Or $2.50 per week. Or $0.81333 a day if I go three times a week. Pretty sweet deal, huh?

I really like the neighborhood where I live. It's on the edge of Little Italy. On there corner are two cafes boasting of the best espressos and gelato. Right down the street is the most adorable Italian grocer and deli with old fashioned cashier counters and constant Italian music playing. Sometimes I feel like I'm in Italy when I walk around this area.

Five minutes walk away is Chinatown. Busting with small Chinese bakeries and restaurants and friendly Chinese people; I went to the Chinatown library this afternoon and the librarian was so helpful! (I was using the computer, and most of the icons and other things were in Chinese and I couldn't figure out how to use it).

Fifteen minutes walk from my apartment is downtown; not bad, not bad.

Also, the coolest playground I've ever seen or been to is at the park just across the street. There is something similar to a merry-go-round in a smaller form and nearly gave Biruk a headache we spun so fast around.
And the most amazing swings! 80's movies portraying the future, the year 2020 or so would have created swings like this for their films. Imagine a large metal bowl that not only holds your butt, but you can practicaly lay in; three people would have fit on it, attached not with two ropes, but four so that you could hold on better and not flip upside down. Not like a tire-swing (although there was one, too).

The fist night, I fell asleep to firetruck sirens (and was frequently awoken by them, as well). None of that last night.
This morning, I woke up to the 'sounds of the city'; A bell clanging to alert drivers and pedestrians of the oncoming train (one of the few spots where the subway is above ground is about three or four blocks away), a dog barking, cars driving by, people chatting as they walked. All soothing sounds, not bothersome. So, I fell back asleep (so lazy, I know!).


And now, pictures of my apartment:















There are two stairs in my apartment; making it 'bi-level'. They both creak when you step on them.
The cabinet came with the apartment, as well as a kitchen table and chairs, along with a Bible left on the table, a quarter on the floor, and a battery in the corner.














Can you see the multi-colored fan blades? These fans must have been for a child's room; they make me laugh!



















Bench also came with the place.