Tuesday, August 20, 2013

New Blog!

Go here.

Slightly less infrequently updated.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Frequent Update FAIL

Terrible. Just terrible. And this isn't even a proper update. It's only a vague sort of promise that a more complete one will be coming soon...

Briefly: I am back in Bristol - hooray! I've been here since the end of September staying with my friend Aisling and her flatmate (and friend as well) Maxime. They have been kind enough to lend me their "annex" in exchange for sweeping and dish-washing duties. In a convenient albeit tragic turn of events, Maxime will be moving at the end of January, so I will be moving across the hall into a room with a bed! And a closet! And a window! Can you tell I'm a bit excited? Like Aisling, Maxime is working on a Ph.D. in archaeology at the University of Bristol but is transferring to Liverpool following the departure of his faculty advisors.

In other news, I have a job! After a month of wandering through an array of part-time positions, I successfully interviewed with the University of Bristol Students' Union (hereafter UBU) and am in my third week as Democracy & Campaigns Intern ('intern' in this case meaning that it's a newly created position with a sixth-month potentially extendable contract). So far, I have been evacuated from the building, taken part in several student protests including a "Death of Education" rally (oh yes, we had a coffin) and a field trip to lobby MPs in London, and done slightly less thrilling work preparing for the student elections in the new year. I also have a desk. And a name tag. Business cards coming soon...

Well, this wasn't quite as brief as I intended. Too many exciting things going on. I might even post a few photos. Oh, the shock! The horror! The horror!

Ok, pictures. The one up top is our gate-way - we're the basement flat so the entrance is down the side and around the back. Very confusing for the Pizza Hut delivery dude. Just beneath here is the Clifton Suspension Bridge. Clifton is the area of Bristol in which I reside and the bridge (over the Avon River gorge) is one of the main attractions.

Above: Me, clearly, and Aisling (pronounced 'Ashling' for those who care to know), my lovely Irish flatmate. Below: Zombified (me/Dónal and Mike) for the Halloween Zombie March through the Bristol city centre. Further below: The UBU crew (plus intense police presence) in London to protest the Parliament vote for increased tuition fees.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

What's that? A Whole New Year?

It's fitting that this update follows the thrill of a new apartment with the leaving of it. I should include a photo of the abandoned, empty (but squeaky clean!) room, but that would be a bit depressing and such excitement lies ahead (and I forgot to take such a picture). I refer of course to helping people win money off the ponies at Canterbury. And to a month spent enjoying pure sunshine and laziness in Michigan followed by several days of Irish-American adventures (I hope you like bizarre foods-on-sticks, Dónal, because we're definitely visiting the State Fair.) and, oh yes, that lovely little plane ticket to England for the end of September. The 24th, to be precise. Followed by lots of wonderful visits (Yes, that's a hint, friends and family). Details (and more parenthetical comments) to come!

A few random photos of recent events:
Above: First Target Field experience! Go Twins!
Below: Beavers are hard at work in Wolsfeld Woods.
Below: Just a taste of the strangeness.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

New Apartment!

The view from my kitchen window. Hello, Minneapolis!

Look, a kitchen!

Yes, the walls are pink.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Happy August

So now I'm technically 24 years old. Only technically, because I don't mentally age until Allie's birthday a week from now. That's the proof, you see. For two-and-a-half weeks a year I get to party in birthday limbo...

In less weird news, I'll be at the preschool again in the fall (more hours, hooray!). That job plus scrabbling together a few more hours at the Caribouniverse plus (fingers crossed) a shift or two at the horse track should put me in a semi-stable position for apartment hunting. If I the schedule-madness doesn't drive me insane first. Anyway, exciting! The summer has been lovely... snatched a week in Michigan, spent a great weekend at my friend Collin's cabin, passed the Caribou shift supervisor "sexual harassment awareness" online exam. Go me. I've also managed to maintain a quite respectable tan for two solid months. Thank you, outdoor pool at Lifetime Fitness.

Um, that's about it. Since it's sunny, I'm going outside now.

PS. I'm now on twitter. We'll see how it goes. Link is to the left above new link to facebook.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Employment! At Last!

I finally have a job... two jobs, that is... oh, wait, three jobs... okay, three-and-a-half. So much employment is a bit overwhelming. Most officially, I'm a Team Member at a Caribou Coffee tucked away in the corner of a massive grocery store. It's a very boring job title, but the work itself is mostly fun (or at least bustling along): I greet people, make coffee, scrub out whipped cream containers, restock multiple varieties of plastic cup lids, etc. I'm also working at a preschool twice a week in the morning; I help out with the three-year-olds, which is mildly frustrating at times but generally entertaining. It's hard to get too annoyed if they cover themselves in paint when they're so darn adorable. I'm also technically still employed at the horse track (on an as-needed basis that is rapidly turning into if-I-have-any-spare-time), and I'm directing the confirmation handbell choir. Now that's a whole new bag of crayons. I eventually figured out how to conduct in 3/4. About the fifth time we practised that particular song. Good times all around, though. I just need to come up with a more efficient way to answer the "Now, where are you working?" question.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Mission Accomplished

A fantastic update: I just received the final marks for my courses and dissertation and... I passed! The graduation ceremony isn't until February (I hope I can attend), but what a relief to know!


Monday, September 22, 2008


After two wonderful but somewhat hectic final months in Bristol, I've returned to Minnesota. I'm living with the parents (and Leo), job hunting, and still trying to find a home for all the stuff I brought back from England. Good times!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A Triumphant Return

I'm now back in Bristol after a month at home in the States following my adventure in Turkey. To the great delight of all, Allie came across with me to visit for a week :). We went to London, took in the sites, visited my friend Collin, and went to see "Hairspray" (completely fantastic!). In Bristol, we saw all the main attractions: the Cathedral, College Green, various restaurants, and, of course, the Suspension Bridge. We even had time to make a day-trip to Bath including a pilgrimage to the Jane Austen Centre. For those of you keeping track, that makes my third such pilgrimage. I really like Jane Austen. Anyway, Allie and I had a marvelous time and the whole Bristol crowd was sorry to see her go. We nearly tied her to the single chair in my cubby-hole of a room to prevent her departure.

And now, Photos!

Allie and I and my flatmate Caryn who rescued us when we were delayed overnight in Newark. We went to Benihana... yum.

Allie at the Clifton Suspension Bridge.

(2 above) Having fun in the caves near the Bridge... I'm creepy and Allie's fierce.

Sight-seeing in London.

We are sooo good at taking pictures of ourselves!

The Shaftesbury Theatre where we saw "Hairspray".

Inside the Bristol Cathedral. We were appropriately quiet and reverent.

Such a lovely time!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Turkey - Part 5 (PHOTOS!)

right View over Ankara from BIAA hostel.

left Atatürk Bulvarı, a main road in Ankara.

right The Yacht Harbor in Antalya.

left The Theatre at Termessos.

At the Düden waterfalls near Antalya.

left Derek smoking the "water-pipe" at our Antalya hostel.

right Hellenistic Gates at Perge.

left Street in Kaş.

right Harbor at Fethiye.

left Colonnaded roadway at Patara.

above The Butterfly Valley.

right Rock-cut tombs at Tlos, near Fethiye.

left Saklıkent Gorge.

right The Library of Celsus at Ephesus.

left The Temple of Apollo at Didyma.

right Inside the Haghia Sophia.

left Istanbul.

right From the courtyard of the Blue Mosque.

left Atatürk's Mausoleum in Ankara.