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May 2005 Archives

May 31, 2005

Things I Did Not Do On My Last Night At Work

Things I Did Not Do On My Last Night At Work, Even Thought I Wanted To, a list, by jo
  1. Replace the nice classical music in the lobbey with the soundtrack to the Rocky Horror Picture Show.
  2. Set every room in the hotel with a wakeup call of 7:22, regardless of what time it was supposed to be set for.
  3. Walk up and down the hallways singing "Home for a Rest" at the top of my lungs.
  4. Randomly charge credit cards for randomly large amounts.
  5. Tell any guest, staff member, or member of the management team what I really thought of them.
  6. Tell any bad D&D jokes. ("So, a cleric, a theif, a mage and a fighter all walk into a bar. The bartender looks up and says 'What is this, a party?'")
  7. Talk like a pirate all night.
  8. Refuse to actually do the audit, stating "It can be done tomorrow night, it won't matter."
  9. Answer the phone with "Thank you for calling AT&T Wireless, my name is Anna, how can I assist you?"
  10. Call in sick.
IOW: It was a terribly dull night. I had a steak sandwich for my last "free" breakfast (It's a taxable benefit, does that mean it's free? I don't understand income tax some days), and calmly informed my vegetarian friend later that day that there was a cow in my stomach. Then I trotted around the kitchen and mooed a lot.

I've been a bit stressed, is it showing?

There is a plan, of course. The plan has changed three times in the past 12 hours, but there is currently something shaping up to be a plan.

The nice people from the women's shelter are coming over later today to pick up all of my good furniture. Kris is coming on the weekend with a posse and at least one pickup truck, if not two, to get the rest of his stuff finally out of my apartment. (For those following along at home, Kris moved out in early January. Yes, it will be June before he gets his stuff out. I know, I have no leg to stand on, there was still stuff of mine at Barry's for about a year after I moved out, but Barry wasn't planning an international move at any point.) I am planning on flying out to BC for about a week, leaving on ... whatever day next Tuesday is. But that's up in the air because I want to find tickets for no more than 119$ one way, and I don't really have a deadline in place to get there. The cat will go to BC with my parents. I don't plan on spending much more than a week in BC, simply beause I am feeling that constant pressure of TIME TIME TIME on my head. By the time I get back from BC, my paperwork should all be in order. (This is assuming I get the visa. I can't imagine any reason why I wouldn't, short of them not accepting a letter from the bank regarding my current financial status. Which would suck, since it was 98$ to apply for the damned thing, and I'd have to reapply and pay another 98$.) Then, I buy my ticket, pack what's left of my things, and flee the country like the hounds of hell are following me.

Somewhere in that mess I need to see a bunch of people, give away some things that need to be given away, take a trip to the Goodwill Store and WINhouse to drop off some donations, and return even more things to various friends of mine that I have belongings off.


May 30, 2005


This is me not handling being unemployed. Wanna watch?

*gah* I know I have two more paycheques coming in, that I have 15 impossible things to do before breakfast, that I have a million things I'm forgetting I need to do, that I will be able to fill up all of my time in a productive and meaningful way.

But, damn it, I have no job! Gah!

In unrelated news, I am still playing with the new url. I had to contact customer support to fix the things I broke, though. Note to self: Read the Fucking Manual.

May 29, 2005

Don't Blog While Drunk

I have been reminded not to blog while drunk (or at least very tipsy) so I shall instead just say that I no longer work at the very very boring job, and post the rest later. There was a celebration involving me, and some alcohol, and my cat, and a computer, and some chairs that i am not allowed to eat. No eating the chairs.

Now don wants to know if he's Rip, and he thinks I am the one who is drunk? Boys are dumb.

May 27, 2005



Duties will include: Making several important phone calls during daylight hours, ensuring that I eat, and reminding me that coming home at 7:30 a.m. and playing Dungeon Keeper for an hour and a half may be relaxing, but doesn't actually accomplish anything.

Please send applications to anna@annaoverseas.com. Or comment on this post, I suppose. Either or.

Basically, I am going nuts with things to get accomplished, and not getting enough of it done in a sufficient amount of time. It feels like every day time is running ahead of me. But, I have finally arranged for the bulk of my worldly goods to be taken care of in the next five days, and that will cut down a great deal on the impending sense of overwhelming doom. But then, living in an empty apartment with an angry cat may distract me enough, too.

I considered looking for a compentent personal assistant instead, but Google talked me out of it. See, if you type "I want a wife" into Google, you get quite a few hits, mostly of an essay published in Ms. Magazine by that title. (If you read the article, I will just comment that I was that wife. Well, girlfriend. And I'm still really really bitter over it.) However, if you type "I want a competent assistant", you get singifigantly less hits.

I wrote out my to do list, the full one, for everything. I measured. It actually is longer than my arm.

I was complaining about this to a friend, who made the suggestion I hire Mel for the job, to which I had to reply, quite honestly, "No, I'd have to pay her what she's worth, and I can't afford that."

So, obviously, I am in need of a wife. At least for a week or two. Any takers?

{For those asking about the boyfriend application of earlier, I shall just say that I'm reviewing applications at this point in time, and shall apprise those who have met the proper criteria to pick a time for their interview. Which they can arrange with my wife. Hopefully.}

May 25, 2005

Domain Name

In order to distract myself from the fact that I'm anxious about all this paperwork stuff, I bought a domain name.

I'm not moved in there yet, the place is utter chaos and changing every couple of minutes while I play with it, but if you want to watch the trainwreck, the url is www.annaoverseas.com.

May 21, 2005

Passport Application - Check

I'm having a bit of a panic attack right now, as I got all the forms together, put them in the mail, and sent them off yesterday.

Oh. my. god.

May 20, 2005

Scarecrow and Episode III

Well, I did go see Episode III this afternoon. (Or, I guess, yesterday afternoon for the rest of the world. I love working nights.) I'm not going to say much about it here, except that John Williams is an amazing composer.

I mention it because I went with my friend Scarecrow, and suddenly realized it was probably going to be the last movie the two of us saw together. Which is kinda appropriate for several reasons. The first movie we saw together was Episode I, when we stood in line for tickets, my CD player blasting the soundtrack that he had picked up earlier that day. We went with a huge group of friends, and it was the experience of seeing the movie, rather than the movie itself, that I enjoyed.

After that, we started meeting every so often to go see movies in the city. Mark is a huge movie person, follows them with a passion. He keeps me updated on projects that I might enjoy seeing, tells me what's going on in the latest Star Trek franchise, and generally doesn't let me only see "artsy fartsy" movies when I go to the theater. He's probably responsible for almost every movie I saw in a "main stream" theater over the past few years.

It's been the main part of our friendship, and something I'm really going to miss.

It's kinda beginning to hit now. There are people that I may never see again. I have life plans that will keep me out of Canada entirely for at least five years. I have been unwilling to plan beyond that, but I don't really see a future where I come back here to live. And people move on and change and do exciting things and have babies and live their lives, and things drift apart, and it's sad.

I'm eager for that future, that five year plan, but I can't help but look back right now on the people and places I'm leaving behind.

So, yeah. Thanks, Mark, for making me see Spiderman 2 in theaters, and I'm sorry I giggled through the entire wedding scene (but that dress was fugly, dude! How could you not?). And I'm really glad I didn't listen to my own instincts, and went with you to see Finding Nemo, cuz that was the first DVD I bought in China, it was so good. It's been a lot of fun. I'm kinda glad the Star Wars franchise seems to be ending here, because it wouldn't be the same seeing the next movie without you.

(If you want to know my thoughts about some issues in the movie, please read my live journal post. I'd love to get some responses to my thoughts there. But it has spoilers in it. And it's not a review.)

May 17, 2005

Five Things That Will Not Happen To Me In Scotland

Five Things That Will Not Happen to me In Scotland, a list, by jo
  1. I will not find Excalibur encased in stone, pull it out, and turn out to be the Once and Future King.
  2. I will not receive my (very late) Hogwart's letter.
  3. I will not be invited into any rebellions against the British Monarchy, especially not by men in kilts with very bad Scottish accents.
  4. I will not step into a fairy ring and be lost for fifty years, returning to find my friends and family have forgotten all about me.
  5. Sean Connery will not suddenly realize I am the woman for him, and sweep me off my feet.

Bonus entry:

6. I will not find out I am Anna McCloud of the Clan McCloud, and I can never die. (And whomever I reveal this to will not suddenly want to have sex with me because of it.)

Damn, that's making Scotland seem a bit less appealing, all things considered.

In unrelated news: I am terribly ill. I won't bore you with the details. But it's been hard to care enough to either update my blog or answer my email. Sorry 'bout that.

May 12, 2005

Scottish Movie Roundup

I've apparently decided I need to watch a bunch of Scottish-based films, in an effort to prepare myself for my time over there. I don't quite know when I decided this, but yesterday before work I watched the first hour or so of Braveheart, and thus got to not only listen to some very strange "Scottish" accents, but also mock the movie. Always a fun night!

Does anyone have any recommendations of "good" or actually good Scottish-based film? I'm going to have some spare time coming up, what with the whole not working for much longer thing. And heaven knows how well I handle inactivity.

(I recently had the thought that if I lived in the country, and thus had even less to do every day than I do now, I'd start howling at the moon, until the neighbours left politely worded notes that I was scaring the sheep.)

In unrelated news, I read a book yesterday that was the complete antithesis to Bridget Jones' Diary. It's called The Bride Stripped Bare, and it was the story of a 30-something woman who realizes she's restless and out of sorts about her life, and wants to do something to escape it. This is something I find a lot easier to understand than endless angsting. It's written in a very odd style: 2nd person, present tense, short entries like a diary. It's very engaging and thought provoking, and it's left me feeling a lot less alone in the world. The author said she chose to remain anonymous so she could write whatever she wanted, without fearing what would be said to her or her family. I want to recommend it, but I'm not sure how much anyone else would like it.


Countdown to last day at work: 13 days...

May 11, 2005

The Top Three Reasons I Would Make a Horrible Parent

The Top Three Reasons I Would Make A Horrible Parent, an expanded list, by jo

1. Horrible Bedside Manner

So, I'm with a friend of mine who needs to go to the hospital once a year and have his heart examined by really big machines. I guess I was invited as moral support, or perhaps just as a distraction, because I really wasn't much use as anything else. But, we're sitting waiting for the results, and the following conversation ensues:

Me: So, you've been coming here at least once a year since you were five?

Him: Yup.

Me: You've been living with the knowledge that at any point your heart could just burst open and kill you instantly since you were five?

Him: It's not the heart, it's the aorta. And yes, basically.

Me: So, how do they explain that to a five year old? "Well, kid, everyone dies some day, you're just gonna die a lot sooner."

Him: That's not quite how it went.

Me: What, did they explain that death is just a land of magical fairies and chocolate?

Him: I-- No, no, that's not it. As a note, I don't think you'd make a good doctor.

Me: Hey, I think it's a great idea!

Him: See previous comment.

So, yeah... perhaps not so much with the good parenting aspect.

2. Children need actual care.

Unlike my cat, who I can lock in the apartment, going home long enough to feed, water, and pet him on my weekends, I would actually have to take care of a child. My understanding is they need someone there all the time.

3. I like toys too much.

And anything that was purchased for the kid, I'd end up playing with. I have a collection of toys I have to get around to giving to the children of various friends of mine, that I got in China, but they're so darned cute! And yesterday I bought myself a stuff bee that for some reason I insist on wearing around my wrist and have named "Killer". I am so strange.

I've been advised I should also add "wanting to name my daughter Antigone" to the list, but I don't think that would make me a horrible parent, just an eccentric one.

In unrelated news, I gave my notice at work yesterday with a letter that went mostly like this:

Dear (boss man):

I quit.
Formal letter to follow.
See you tomorrow night.

Hugs and Kisses,

Okay, not quite, but I gave my last day as the 25th.

God, it's all happening so fast now.

May 10, 2005


And so time runs away from me so quickly some days, and it feels like it's a million years until I can go, and yet it's coming up so suddenly, this artificial deadline I put out there of June 6th. It feels like it will never come, and that I'll never be ready anyway, and what the heck am I doing all of this for?

It feels like making this choice, to live in Scotland, in Ireland, to go to live in as many places as I can, never staying too long, feels like some sort of rejection of so many things. Like a rejection of my mother, who at this age already had my brother, was trying so hard to have me. A rejection of the person I was a few short years ago, who could see nothing better in the world than having a home of my own, a white picket fence with a garden in the back, a couple of kids and a dog. It feels so much like deciding to do this is a rejecting of a lot of my friends here, friends I want to stay close with but at the same time I just don't understand how they don't feel this wanderlust, this need to see the world in a way that tourisim doesn't.

I still remember being so annoyed with the only tourist I really met in China, the one who stayed at only the highest class hotels, only hit the major tourist spots ("We were in Beijing yesterday, today we're going out to see the Terracotta Warriors, after that we're off to Hong Kong to do some shopping"), and insisted that my view of China was just wrong. That there must be other foriengers in Jiangyan. (There were, about a month later, but not at the time.) I don't want to see just what you can see in a quick jaunt through a country. I want to see what it is to live there, to get to the point where Canadian accents sound strange, and being on a bus full of people just like you seems far more overwhelming than the first busride in China ever could. I want to live like that, and somedays I don't understand why other people don't.

I talked to my mother about this a few days ago, and she told me that she couldn't help but be jealous. She wanted to do the same things I do, but it wasn't done when she was my age. She grew up in a small town in southern Manitoba, went to a one room school house for most of her public education, wore her jeans under her skirt to keep warm in the winter. Some days it feels like my mother and I have nothing in common, other days it feels like it's only a few years difference, that we could have been friends were we the same age.

I feel trapped by time right now. I'm giving in my notice at work, but I still don't have the 3000$. I should have it by Monday, but the idea of being trapped at that job an extra week makes me ill. As soon as I have the money, I get a letter from the bank, drop my application in the mail, and wait impatiently for 2 weeks for it to come back. In those two weeks, I finish off everything I need to do, visit my friends and family back in Vancouver, say good bye to everyone here, so I can purchase my plane ticket and be gone, and spend the rest of my life missing Edmonton in the spring, when the river valley is more beautiful than anything I've ever seen.

I was asked in an email from an old friend: "What is so wrong with Canada that you don't want to be here anymore?" I struggled with that, because some days I feel like this choice is a running away, a refusal to deal with life in the long term. And not too long after receiving that email, I went to see Pier 21, which is where so many people came to start their new lives in Canada, some dying with the need to get here, and I want to run away?

But it's not that.

Canada is beautiful, and I love it here. But it's easy to say your country is beautiful and wonderful if you've never experienced life anywhere else. I remember, still, thinking Manitoba was the most wonderful place in the world, until I fell in love with Alberta. It's easy to think some place or some person is perfect if you've never experience anywhere else. And I came back to Alberta after going to school in BC.

I want to see the world. I want to see it all. I want to touch the pyramids, walk along the Great Wall, go shopping in some out of the way place in Scotland, see the Parthenon with my own eyes. There are so many things in this world, and it's only miles and time that's keeping me from them. I can come back. Canada isn't going anywhere. And although I've been living with the knowledge that Edmonton isn't home anymore, that it hasn't been for some time, I know I can come back here, walk in the River Valley late at night and look up at the stars.

For me, at least, home only comes after a struggle, and I want to see where that struggle is going to take me.

May 9, 2005

Pirate Jokes

Number of jokes about pirates emailed to me over the past week: 12

Number of jokes I heard (per day) about pirates over the past week: 8

Percentage of these jokes that were some varation of the line "We just need to get you a parrot": 92

Heck, even my eye doctor said that to me.

The whole thing is, of course, incredibly funny. A lot of people figured I was just wearing the patch to be cute, but I just patiently explained to each one that I had been tuning my friend's harp and one of the string's broke and whapped me in the eye, leaving it damaged. Or I had a crossbow accident. Or I was running with scissors. I think my favorite was that I sent it away for cleaning, because one person went "Oh, I didn't know you had a glass eye!"

People are fun. *grin*

Anyway, the point is that I can look at a computer again without going cross eyed, so my life is a lot better. My glasses make me look like a librarian, which wasn't quite the look I was going for, but whatever. I can see, and they aren't terribly heavy.

Life, like people, is fun.

May 1, 2005

Things I Have Done This Week That Have Gotten Me One Step Closer to Scotland

Things I Have Done this Week That Have Gotten Me One Step Closer To Scotland, a list, by jo
  1. Finished my income tax. Ooh, lots of money coming in from the government. (Basically, I should have a bank balance of around 3000$ before I apply for the Working Holiday Visa. The government doesn't actually specify how much you should have, but the majority of people I've talked to say about that amount. It's to show you won't be a burden on the economy when you live there.)
  2. Helped my friend do a lot of things to get his house ready to put on the market. Because I have a signed piece of paper from him indicating that once the house is sold, he'll give me 3000$. So, if by some horrible mistake I can't get the money myself, I know it's coming.
  3. Gotten ridden of a bunch more stuff that I didn't need or want.
  4. Talked to my parents about a home for Little Demon Spawn, also knows as my cat. My mother thinks I should pay the extra money and fly. My mother also has a bigger income than I do, so I'll likely go with the original plan of driving down with a friend. Who is allergic to cats. *sigh*
  5. "Found" an awful lot of time to spend with dear friends, making great memories. The problem with doing that is, of course, that one decides one doesn't necessarily want to leave.
  6. Answered the age-old question of "contacts or glasses" by calling the eye doctor and saying "Suit me up with glasses. Or just one contact lens for my left eye. Cuz this whole eye patch thing is kinda fun at first, but it gets old fast."
That feels like a full week. *grin*

It's been a great week. I saw Hitchhiker's with Scarecrow and actually liked it. I also saw the Rocky Horror Picture Show with Crash and Linette and Don, and we had a great time people watching.

As for the whole eye patch thing, it goes like this: My right eye, the useless one, got an eye infection. I can see okay without the patch, as long as I don't intend to move my head in any way. By, say, walking. Or talking to people. So, it's good for watching movies. I grabbed an eye patch while I was out with Scarecrow (who tells me I'd look more sexy if it was white), carefully followed the directions, and now I look "sinister" according to a friend of mine.

Then I threw on a beret and became a sinister member of the French Resistance! A sinister scarred member of the French Resistance! With a mysterious past!

Right up until I hooked up with Crash, who informed me I look like a soap opera villian, determined to ruin his business so that I can buy it out from under him, and steal his woman.

I love Crash.

About May 2005

This page contains all entries posted to Anna Overseas in May 2005. They are listed from oldest to newest.

April 2005 is the previous archive.

June 2005 is the next archive.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.