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If there is hope, it lies in the proles
November 22, 2005

Family! Suddenly! Descended! Into my house! Yesterday!
This was a very surprising turn of events to occur in the week of Thanksgiving. After a busy weekend of cleaning and movies (Harry Potter & The Goblet of Fire, Walk the Line), I was all sorts of prepared for a somewhat leisurely few days before the nastiness of fitting in 2 family dinners + friendsgiving. Alas, it was not to be. My cellphone interrupted our dinner on Sunday night, and I ignored it, like I do whenever we are eating, I am uninterested in talking to anyone, or is someone I would rather just not speak to at all. A voicemail was left, and I was satisfied that I could check it at a later time, when not so engrossed in watching Band of Brothers and eating meatloaf, mashers, and green beans (foreverly known publicly as American Family Meal #3).

The phone rang again just as we were finishing up the eating. Noticing that it was the same person calling, and that this person is an Aunt of mine, I figured someone must be dead, as she is usually not this persistent, so I answered the call.

I have no family that lives within 400 miles of my home but my mother. Most of my friends have gown up in Idaho, if not in Boise or the surrounding areas, so most of their families live here and are here and in their faces all of the time. I haven't had this pleasure.
Twenty minutes later, Ben and I were shivering in the car, smoking quickly and making our way to Chili's near BSU. See, I had forgotten all about my mom saying something about a cousin of mine, foreverly known as N here (which is very handy for maths geeks like myself), moving into her house out in BFE for a while, and for which I have no... words to express my complete disbelief at anyone wanting to move here under any circumstances except death or children. We were greeted at the restaurant by not only the Aunt who called me, but N's mom, her sister (cousin R), and her boyfriend.

"A-hah!" thought I, as I looked across the table at everyone, "N has a boyfriend that lives here. She's young and just met him and needs to get the hell away from her family for a while. I dig." We enjoyed a lengthy, though eventually somewhat drunken, conversation with the relatives, then ventured home.

Yesterday, it all came crashing down on my head when my mom (to whom I am a horrible child - I hadn't seen her in almost 2 months), her boyfriend, her roommate, the 2 aunts, and the 2 cousins convened at my house before heading out east to the mom's house. This was an hour and a half of complete stress and pity for me. I've never had that many people in my house that I had to keep track of - it was like getting 7 ferrets and letting them loose in my house. The house had been freshly cleaned in preparation for friendsgiving. I now have to clean again tomorrow night.

It's not that I don't love my family, because I totally do. I have just become so used to being with Ben, and having he as my family, that I have forgotten all of the things that come along with family: the jokes, the loud boisterousness of 3 sisters together, the 2 cousin-sisters griping at each other. I realize that I will be the matriarch of this family some day, and that I should probably learn to deal with it. Sometimes, though, I wish my family was easier to take care of - like my friends. Blood runs thicker than water though (dirait on), which must have something to do with the feeling of responsibility I have for anything that may happen while my family is here. That's what makes them different. And that's why I love them so.

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Anyone for 2008?
November 15, 2005

He makes all my engines go 'whoah-oh-oh-oh'So, after much debacle and time spent not sleeping last Wednesday, I finally own 3 tickets to the Robbie Williams concert in Amsterdam, Netherlands, on June 21st. I say I because I haven't been compensated for the other 2 tickets yet. So... technically... they're up for grabs. I also say "own" with a rather unrealistic bend. I have paid for the tickets, but they won't be in my hot little hands until a mere 4 weeks before the concert. Since I have never purchased tickets this far in advance (7 months!), I've never had to deal with this. The closest I can get is purchasing tickets for Burning Man, at which point I have waited up to 6 weeks for my tickets. And those were more expensive than the Robbie Williams concert tickets. But at least I knew from whence they came, and it was on the same continent on which I reside.

So, the next steps, which will most likely be left until February or so, are to secure flights and roofs/beds. Neither Ben nor I have spent much time in the Netherlands, so this will be a lovely trip, I'm sure. We're taking a week to sightsee and all that. Since I'm pretty much 100% dutch, I'm sure I'll feel right at home (I have noticed, when there before, that I do feel quite comfortable in Amsterdam - almost everyone looks like me a bit).

A few months before the trip to Europe, though, is the top-of-the-list travel priority: the Egypt/Israel trip. Occurring in March (tentatively), I will be meeting Ben in Cairo, where we will most likely hop a plane immediately to Tel Aviv. We'll have a fun time with Purim in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem, then, after shabbos, we'll fly back to Egypt and do a Nile cruise.

Somewhere in there, I am also planning an East-coast trip to visit friends in NYC and the surrounding area.

I'm going to have a busy 2006, and 2007 is already booked. ^_^

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November 7, 2005

A few weeks ago, as I was driving home from work, I had the most interesting experience. I was stopped at a light, my car in the middle land, next to the left-hand turning lane. As I waited for the notoriously long signal, I leaned my head back against the headrest and closed my eyes, listening to The Postal Service through my stereo. I may have slipped into some kind of end-of-day trance. I opened my eyes and noticed that the line of autos to the left of me moving gracefully through the light and into the intersection. As I watched these cars (and mostly trucks), I was surprised to note that they made very little sound. My window was wide open, yet every auto that passed seemed to whisper past - only the movement of air was creating a stir.

Soon enough, my signal turned green, and I went on my way. Ever car I passed on the continuation of my journey was loud and obnoxious. I had used up all of my daily silence in the 2 minutes at the light.

New bookcase & empty boxesBen and I finally purchased 2 large bookcases yesterday afternoon. It has been almost a year since we moved into our present abode, and we have had 10 boxes full of (loosely-termed) literature piled in the dining room. The stacks of books atop the boxes grew out of control to towering heights, theatening to topple at any moment. Both of us are book-purchasers, rather than book-borrowers, so every month donated at least 5 new titles to the stacks atop the boxes. Last night, Laura and I assembled one of the bookcases, placed it in its new home in the livingroom, and I got my rocks off by emptying 6 of the boxes properly. The empty boxes are now stacked one-on-top-the-other in the middle of the livingroom floor, making it feel as if we just moved again. What a lovely sight to behold!

PS. For those that were interested in the recipy for the Creamy Chicken Soup, here it is.

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