Tuesday, 4 September 2012 07:56 pm
There was quite a downpour this morning. I was hanging out with my parents at their hotel just as they were on their way back home; I stuck around a bit longer so I wouldn't be caught in the worst of it getting back to the car. It turned out to be a very warm rain, but also a lot of water.

Things I then saw on my way to work:

- ducks swimming on the shoulder of the road
- a toddler joyfully stomping in puddles in a front yard
- a pair of middle-aged women driving a scooter in the bike-lane with raincoats billowing. The one in the front looked like she was soaked to the bone and had an ear-to-ear grin.

Controlled chaos

Wednesday, 29 August 2012 10:01 pm
My world seems to ebb and flow with varying amounts of chaos. Sometimes, it's a bit much.

I wish I'd taken a photo; my study was a disaster area. Last night I was due to be on a conference-call on queer Quaker outreach. So I started prepping 10 minutes before the call was to start- lots of time to re-read the agenda, call up my notes, find my headphones... We'd used the same conference calling number a bunch of times, but somehow I mis-remembered it was a toll-free number. Nope, it's a regular US number. Oh right, I had bought a calling card to deal with that, last fall when I was last on these conference calls. ...Oops, this was going to be a problem.

1) My cellphone's long distance to the US is something like $0.45/min, so that was a non-starter. 2) I tried both of my cheap calling cards, and they had expired or ran out of money, probably in May. 3) I tried skype; but my account had JUST been marked 'inactive' due to no calls in 180 days. It took me a few minutes to figure that out, but they sent me an email last week telling me to log in before yesterday. Oops. Now it was time for the conference call to start. 4) Could I find the parts for my VoIP system, which is only 1 cent a minute? Yes, I can! I plugged in my VoIP box, stringing wires in a mess, dragged out the speaker phone from the closet (which was nicely put away under a pile of other stuff, a pile which became strewn all over the floor), found a phone cord (another mess in the closet), got everything hooked up, and dialed in, only a couple minutes late. ...The call was useful and good, but I was sort of distracted by the bomb that had gone off in my study! So I'm not sure what I learned from this experience. I really like the look of my desk without a phone on it, and I'm glad we got rid of the land-line. I did reactivate my skype account, which would have worked without any wires. And I'm glad I have a backup backup backup plan.


We have met all of the conditions for the house sale! The inspection found a leak in the main-floor bathroom, so we knocked $500 off the price rather than needing to deal with plumber / re-inspection / etc. possibilities. They are doing a title search and the house is to close September 19th! (Or earlier, if they decide they want to). I'm still sort of numb that it's finally wrapping up. Yay! But now our line of credit (on the house) goes away, and we immediately had to figure out where we were going to stash the large pile of money until the condo registers in December. (The answer? Canadian Tire Bank. Yes really. 1.8% interest savings account, and the interest is not paid in Canadian Tire Money.)


My parents are coming in 4 days. We discussed this option last weekend, decided it wasn't practical for them to rush to get here on the September long weekend, that we'd find another time we're all free... and then yesterday they decided hey, why not do it while they know we're all free, especially if they offset their visit a day to give us a bit of breathing room after our stressful weeks. So they're arriving Sunday and leaving Tuesday! I'm excited to show them the new place, and I'm glad this is working out, since I think we all had a premonition they wouldn't otherwise make it here until 2013.


We are starting to have neighbours on our floor. Last night dan brought by a couple, half of whom is living down the hall. They felt a bit like they were out of a soap-opera, and not in a bad way really, just a bit much. Don't get me wrong; I am very happy at the mix of people we've met in the building- young, old, gay couples, straight couples, singles, dog-owners... I agree with dan. This was the right choice.

Just so long as we don't end up as extras in someone else's soap opera.
Two weekends from now is the opening of the Stephen Hawking Centre at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics (at right; click for more flickr stream). It will soon house three times as many smart people attempting to turn coffee into theorems which might in 30 years escape into a different form as (currently) indistinguishable from magic. That same weekend may see Stephen Hawking at the public opening, though if I were he, I would find something better to do that weekend.

I, however, am not he, and I am taking a tour. You could also if you're free Sunday the 18th; let me know if you sign up for something around the 3pm slot and we can meet up.

They are also hosting two free public talks on the evening of Saturday the 17th (which I'm waffling on; but there are still apparently tickets still available for both as well.)


I have a fairly unplanned Labour Day Weekend, which means it is going to go by in a flash. I'm going to do some cooking, play some games with friendly peeps, go to a potluck, and possibly go for a long bike-ride on Monday if it isn't storming.

Dan is away until next Thursday; he is currently in Luxembourg, which my father tells me officially speaks Luxembourgish (and Wikipedia backs him up).


This evening I talked to my folks. They recently had a distant cousin visit from out west. She brings news of the History of the Allens. Apparently, my relatives who settled in Watertown, NY in the mid-1800s came there via Medford, MA, where they lived since the late 1700s, when they emigrated from England (not Scotland, as my father had believed). In the early 1800s the Medford Allens founded a Unitarian church, which subsequently schismed into a competing Unitarian church just across the street. And there is an Allen Homestead in Medford, which this distant cousin had visited. And that's all the detail I got this evening. I hope to extract more from my folks, as it sounds like there's potential for some juicy stories, or at least some amusing coincidences given that I was, y'know, living in Medford for a year. (A year which ended exactly 10 years ago last Monday! Hey, we've lived here for 10 years now. I can barely believe that!)

UK trip notes

Saturday, 11 September 2010 11:37 am
Caution: contains Super Lambananas )
You know, I'm looking forward to home.

[ETA: Comments disabled due to spam]

Happy Friday

Friday, 6 August 2010 11:53 pm
As I write, [livejournal.com profile] melted_snowball is sitting laying a-bed [1] on an airplane enroute to Amsterdam; he's gone 'till next Friday. In the morning, [livejournal.com profile] roverthedog and I are enroute to the exciting metropolis of Watertown, NY, for dinner with my parents, then to their 2nd house, 45 minutes further away. I'm looking forward to seeing them, and I hope I can be useful helping them reduce clutter as they slowly work their way towards moving into the Watertown house.

I'm wiped out from my week. Monday was a civic holiday, which we took to drive to the beach in Goderich on Lake Huron. The rest of the week sort of flew past. Even though I mostly got enough hours of sleep, I tended to feel un-rested in the mornings. I hope that trend is over.

I had other things I was going to say, but they have evaporated. Perhaps in the morning they will have re-coalesced.

[1] d. sent me a text-message that his upgrade to first-class was successful. Which means hopefully he'll be well-rested when he gets to Amsterdam. There's a parade to go see, after all. ...Yeah. Nice job if you can get it; his conference in Holland just happens to be at the same time as Gay Pride. ;)
OK, I wrote an entire post in my head, biking home, but some time between coming in the door and sitting down at the laptop, it's gone poof.

Rough brush-strokes:

Guy walking with his wife, passing me stopped at a light: "It's a bit fresh for shorts this morning, eh?" What a turn of phrase. He was about 65, maybe 70. Smile in his voice. I said yup, so I was discovering, but it certainly got the blood going. It turns out it's 3C. Not so bad when I was moving... it only snowed a bit while I was actually on the bike, and a bit more snow when I was indoors. But it didn't stick.

I'm in shorts because I wanted ease of motion, because I went to try out a Pilates studio uptown. It was an hour of guided exercises, tough but not too tough; a fun instructor, and a small class. I'm tempted to sign up for the weekly classes, since they seem flexible (haha) and I know it will help my back and shoulder (and stomach and legs and...)

I will also try our gym's pilates class, though the massage therapist I see (at the gym) suggested I should try a "real" pilates studio, not her own workplace, which makes a fairly strong statement.

This afternoon I'm taking a load of dead electronics to the University (locals; free electronics dropoff for recycling today, at East Campus Hall) and maybe making chicken soup. Hm, I think with matzo balls. (wow I'm hungry).

Last night, my cousin Arlene arrived, and I made us roast chicken with pesto. We stayed up talking a bit late (late considering she's here for a conference near Pearson airport, and she was out the door this morning at 7:40.) She's staying one more night, which means she will just miss seeing [livejournal.com profile] melted_snowball, who is coming back from Chicago Sunday mid-day. I hope tonight she'll be back from her conference early enough that I can take her to a ceilli tonight.

My brain seems full of pokey things. Things I should poke at and things that want to poke me back. Like, the web demo I'm doing next week for profs, which is full of wildcards in terms of what feedback they will have. Like the fact that my home mac still has networking problems but I'm not convinced I should replace it with a (brand new, very fast, lighter-weight, pretty) model [1]. Like, dancing on the edge of not over-committing for everything. And concern for friends who are in rough spots. And yet through it, feeling more or less centered; feeling connected like I should be, and sort of being present with the low-level anxiety, knowing that it will work out, s'ok, really.

Something else that will work out well: time for some lunch!

[1] This year's new 13" macbook pro is a bit faster than my work iMac, which is much faster than my home laptop, which has felt fully sufficient for my needs, aside from occasional worries about whether it is slowly dying.

Ada Lovelace Day

Tuesday, 24 March 2009 10:07 pm
So, on Ada Lovelace Day we're asked to blog about women in IT who we admire. I can do this. The tricky part is choosing only one, 'cause I know a lot of women with technical chops. So I'll go back a bit.

Carol Kinne is an artist, emeritus professor at Colgate College in NY, and graphic designer. She's my father's first cousin, and she was a major influence on my choice of what directions I took my computer exploration in high-school. She was the first person I knew with a Commodore Amiga, and she made some sophisticated 2- and 3-d art with it.

In my recollection, she also basically dragged my uncle, parents, and myself onto a sort-of Bulletin Board system we called "AllenNet," hosted on my uncle's email server (via dialup through his employer- they gave him an 800 number to check his email- and we used it to keep in weekly (or so) touch, in the late 80s. Fun times.

Last I heard she was exhibiting in Paris and co-presenting a movie in New York with her partner, Bob.

She's also raised award-winning Samoyed dogs since I was little, and running a Samoyed rescue club for ages.

I've fallen out of touch, recently, but I still think she's been a strongly positive influence on me, and I expect a number of other people as well.

Back home

Monday, 13 October 2008 09:44 am
To those who celebrate this weekend, Happy Thanksgiving. There's a parade happening a few km away from here, which I'm avoiding just like we have for the last seven... But there is certainly a lot to be thankful for, including having good friends. So thanks, y'all.

The trip to Long Island for my cousin's wedding was successful: she's married, the groom's family's met and approved of, and I spent good quality-time with the Grandma, aunt and uncle who are down there. Nobody got murdered, despite multiple predictions, so that's (...nearly a?) raging success as well.

d's safely in DC for his conference, and I lined up a proper Thanksgiving dinner this evening with W&J, two local friends who were feeling like company.

As for right now, I'm going back to bed for a nap. g'night!
The weekend is going to be a bit crazy. My cousin's getting married on Long Island. Dan's got his first concert with the local Philharmonic on Saturday. He convinced me I should go to my cousin's wedding; ideally it only happens the once. So I'm leaving tomorrow early afternoon, by shuttle-bus. Then dan sings his concert, and Sunday afternoon, he drives to the airport, where he catches a plane to DC for a conference.

Two hours later, I'm arriving from New York, and he will have txted me the location of the car so I can get back home again and rescue the pup, who will presumably be confused when I come home alone.

Monday, being a holiday here (Happy Thanksgiving all!) I will be collapsing in a heap. If I'm inspired, I'll be sharing a Thanksgiving dinner with some local Quakers. If not, I think I'll stay in a heap.


Tuesday, 23 September 2008 09:31 pm
It's been a busy 5 days. Friday we drove to Erie PA, which turns out to be just as quick as Google Maps says, if the border crossing is perfunctory, as it was. d. had us switch from the Interstate to Rt. 5, which took us past some beautiful Lake Erie shoreline and some distressingly funny road-signs (including "North Gun Club Rd." across from "South Gun Club Rd.," and more housing developments named "Lakeview" than deserved to be along one road...)

And in Erie, we saw his cousin married, in a Catholic service that felt just a bit over-long on the sermon, but quite well-paced with the singing. And we took d's parents to dinner (at the "best restaurant and lounge between New York and Chicago." All things considered, I'll take NY or Chicago, thanks.) dan's mom grew up near Erie, so we heard some of the story to the city, though she didn't know what the current economy looks like. There were lots of neglected early-20th-century buildings, so I took lots of photos of Art Deco and decrepitude. I imagine the city's OK if you know it, but for a weekend trip it didn't strike me particularly strongly.

We returned home on Sunday, and I got busy on our deck, which has been stripped and waiting for stain since April. (Which isn't exactly my fault; the instructions I read online said I was to wait a week after any rain, and don't do it if rain's expected in the next two days. In this rainy summer we had, I believe we've had precisely one 9-day window without rain, and in it, I was visiting relatives or some other good excuse.) I finally said, 6 days of no rain is close enough, and whipped through 2/3 of it on Sunday, and the rest after work on Monday. And I ran out of stain just 3 square feet from the end- I had to wring the stain from the container with a tiny roller, and it just barely made it. I guess I can conclude the deck was sufficiently pre-seasoned. And it looks pretty good now, too.

What with various other bleh, I'm looking forward to the weekend; maybe even just forward to tomorrow.

Oh yeah- today my bike rolled over its 1000th km for the season.
I'm at my parents' place in Croghan through Friday.

I'm watching Persepolis with my parents.

[livejournal.com profile] roverthedog doesn't quite know what to do with their two young cats, Rusty and Dusty.

Rusty is fairly Garfield-ish in shape, and brave enough to start chasing games with Rover. She'll start chasing him, but loses her nerve quickly.

Right now he's running back and forth in front of us, back and forth, thumpa thumpa thumpa. I think he knows he's got the upper hand.

You may hate me now.

Sunday, 11 May 2008 11:07 pm
I can't wait to go in to work tomorrow. The stuff I'm working on is awesome. On Thursday I met with $boss for our second weekly meeting, which made me quite happy. He asked excellent questions, and we determined that my original task was actually subsidiary to a bigger task, which might make things much easier- and lo, I'm seeing about rewriting our (much maligned) inventory front-end. Rubber, meet road! I just need to get myself a decent PHP book, because I'm tired of learning PHP by experimentation. (Is there a standard dead-tree book everyone uses? Just curious.)

And on Friday, I spent a good chunk of the day essentially exit-interviewing a staff member who has been using this same inventory system for the last many years; I didn't expect our discussion to take two hours, but he had that many suggestions about things that would make the job easier (in the end, he suggested I might be automating him out of a job, which I had been thinking was the case, but that's not out of line what the facility wants to do as well). I spent some time transcribing notes and prioritizing changes, all 95 of them. Look at me! I'm a requirements engineer!

Dinner tonight was lobster, cooked by [livejournal.com profile] melted_snowball for his mom and for me. It was so good. And [livejournal.com profile] dawn_guy and [livejournal.com profile] catbear brought by a sugar pie that was so sweet I think I'm still on a sugar high. Hope I can sleep tonight. ;)


Tuesday, 6 May 2008 10:12 pm
I just got spam. In iCal. I haven't had time to figure out how the hell it got there, but it's a bit of a surprise. Its recipient is... my non-gmail address, but it has a google calendar link at the bottom. Hm. The only action on my part was to confirm in ical that my address belonged to me. And then they appeared in the "notifications" pane.

[edit to add: Ah, I see. it's a convenience feature of mac mail and ical. If my email contains an .ical event notification, it will add it without asking me. iCal preferences... "Advanced" preferences... *untick*]

Also: what's up with friends moving away shortly? Was it something I said?

My friend Michael is imminently moving to Alberta; he told me on the weekend (calling from Alberta).

[livejournal.com profile] ferdzy and her partner Karl are quite possibly moving to Owen Sound this summer. At least 50% possibility, according to K. Higher chance if they can sell their business.

I think that's quite enough of that. No more moving further away. You're only allowed to move closer. (With the proviso that my parents are welcome to move to Ithaca, whether or not it's any closer to here... (and it even is closer, by 50 miles.)) Got it? Good.

hmph. and family.

Sunday, 30 March 2008 04:41 pm
My flight back's been delayed 90 minutes. but I'm going here for dinner. I'll report back whether "First Place, Best Airport Food and Beverage, 2004" means much of anything at all.

Driving back to the airport, I followed this ancient volvo with a black poodle sticking out the window. It would pull its head in, turn around inside the car, stick its head back out and wag enthusiastically. So cute.

This morning, I chatted with my uncle and grandma over lunch. I have lots of experience with my other grandma, who was profoundly hard of hearing, and progressively not-with-it for most of my adult life. I don't feel like I have much experience with Grandma Barbara, who's mentally there, and has a fairly strong personality. I hope I get to know her better.

She was talking about how much she enjoyed the party, and how proud she was of my cousin who planned the whole thing. It occurred to me how well D (my cousin) must know her, since they've lived in the same town D's entire life. Versus my dad, who went away to college and didn't really go back to Long Island; and my folks left NYC to northern NY so I only saw my other NYC grandmother a few times a year; and growing up I saw my third grandmother (dad's bio-mom) sporadically and I don't feel like I know her very well either.

This isn't to be maudlin; just something I'm thinking about.

My uncle has been working on his diet; he's gone from looking fairly fat to slightly chubby. He's 4 inches shorter than me, and he now weighs less than I do, which is a bit weird to consider. He put on most of his extra weight in his late 20s when he started programming; similarly to me; we were the same waist size at age 32. He's got diabetes, which is serious, and I want to be sure I can avoid heading in that direction. He has some similar health concerns as me: migraines, a cluster of allergies including dust mites, and mild asthma (though, my experience with all three of these seems much milder than his). We compared notes on migraine experiences, and he's told me about Topamax, a fairly hardcore drug his neurologist has started him on which has useful side-effects for him. I guess this is one advantage to having relatives you're on a talking basis with.

The party yesterday was fun. I think I'll write about it later; I should make sure I have enough time to get dinner at that First Place Restaurant before I board.


Friday, 28 March 2008 11:59 pm
LGA, 6:50pm.

I saw my first Strand bag, 5 minutes off the plane, and it felt like home.

Soon after, I had my rental car, a zippy red Chevey Cobalt. Setting off onto the big scary Long Island Expressway was oddly anticlimactic since I had Betty riding shotgun. ..Betty? Betty's [livejournal.com profile] psychedelicbike's Garmin GPS, who might (or not) have another name but she sounds like the twin of [livejournal.com profile] sulle_stelle's GPS, so I'll just call her Betty too. (I like the interface more than [livejournal.com profile] sulle_stelle's. So easy to use. I set her to follow my uncle's preferred route, which is a few miles longer than the Shortest Route, but he asserts it's faster. If I'm staying in his house, I might as well humor him..)

Anyway. Being able to keep my eyes on traffic instead of a map *or* my uncle's written directions: Win.

Unexpected bonus: safely and quickly reading road-signs in the dark. Big win.

When I got off the Northern Island Expressway, it was 7:30 and I wanted something to eat. I pulled over and asked Betty for sandwich shops along my route. She said there was a Starbucks 2 miles North. Fair enough. I added it as a waypoint and off we went. I wound up at Walt Whitman Mall, which still amuses me. OK: trying to find a Starbucks buried in a mall wasn't a bright idea; and it turned out to not have sandwiches at all. But I came across a Sbarros, which worked out OK.

Onward to my uncles', and greetings and non-hugs because we're all sick. Grandma's doing well. She's gotten piles of flowers, including one beautiful arrangement sent by... her dentist.

I was asked if I'd eaten; I said I stopped for dinner at Walt Whitman Mall. "Oh, that," says my dad, "your great-uncle Dick was involved with its construction." I made a non-assertive noise. He continued, "general contractor, I think." "..." (thinking, I don't think I'll be able to google that. Hm. Well, I'll write that, and source it later.)

"In fact, for a while, your grandfather was its night-watchman. And a few times he took me on his rounds."

...Well then. Maybe we'll go for a tour. (those few who have met my father might guess that it's *not* likely. I think the last time he was in a mall was likely before the new millennium.)

Dad was all impressed that I was in Toronto three and a half hours earlier. I said welcome to the 20th century. Neither of my parents have flown since well before I was born. I can't imagine. The last time he flew, he was returning from his European vacation in a body cast, but that's all I'll tell of that shaggy dog story.

Tomorrow is going to be busy. My cousin is coming at some point to decorate, and the big party's starting mid-afternoon.

I'll try and post photos.

Weekend Wrapup

Monday, 24 March 2008 09:48 pm
The weekend was fun. Conveniently, the chest-cold I've acquired didn't show itself until last night late- well *after* the Easter dinner out with [livejournal.com profile] melted_snowball and his colleagues. But last night I went to bed with a tight chest and woke up at 5ish this morning feeling pretty icky. Today was blah, but manageable.

I'm drinking tons of fluids and hope I can get over it quickly- if I'm still likely infectious on Friday, I'll scuttle my trip to NYC to see my grandmother... ("Happy 100th Birthday! I brought you a cold!")

Anyhow. This weekend: I slept in (till 8am! wow!), did more paper-sorting in the closet (getting down to the end on the left-hand closet!) did some art-wrangling [1] (three more framed pieces in my study: one by [livejournal.com profile] catbear of d. [2]; one an odd-sized matted piece I bought and promptly stashed in the closet when I realized it would cost a mint to get it properly framed, but [livejournal.com profile] catbear's advice gave me the proper $30 solution; and finally, I bought a frame for the LP album [livejournal.com profile] fuzzpsych gave me when I became a citizen) [3].

[1] Ugh, apologies for the dreadful sentence structure. I bet you can guess what my excuse is?

[2] which looks like a much wider view of this:


We also attended the baptism for [livejournal.com profile] tbiedl's youngest, who's young enough that neither d. or I had met her yet. It was a sweet welcome to her; though the church service was long- it included four readings, three skits, an outdoor portion, two candle lightings, and communion. Whew! :)

We also saw the Phil perform St. John's Passion, with surtitles and projected art. I don't have the oomph to properly review it, but I'm glad we went.

We shared two quite enjoyable dinners. One with [livejournal.com profile] catbear, [livejournal.com profile] dawn_guy, and Boy; it included scads of double-entendres, talking about games, food, and favourite stories. And the miracle of the Uncovered Pie. The other dinner was with colleagues of dan's, plus other academics at the Other University. It included no double-entendres, some French, many bottles of wine, shop talk, favourite stories, and a Devon Rex kitten who looked much like this. (Awwww!)

Hm. It's probably a good idea for me to go thud now. Hopefully I will wake up well-rested and less sick than today.
I just called HR to try and figure out what to do with my physio reimbursement forms.  The HR benefits person for my faculty has gone on holidays already, but her voicemail directed me to call another HR person, who happened to be the benefits person for [info]melted_snowball's faculty. 

She answered all my questions; when I mentioned "my partner" she assumed I meant my male partner, though she apologized for assuming without asking. She said she remembered my name from when d. and I signed up for health insurance in Fall of '01, and in fact remembered a few things about us. 

So I got to briefly tell her that one of my favourite stories of moving to Canada was in her office, when one of our first official interactions after arriving was checking the "common-law" box on her benefits form, and it was all so very anti-climactic.

I'm struck that I had expected this interaction to be banal at best and soul-crushingly bureaucratic at worst, and matter-of-fact decency just feels that much more poignant.
Google Maps, you're fired. The "Baker Road" there on the right hand side? It totally doesn't do that. That's... a trail through the woods and down my parents' driveway. None of that's a road. Especially the dead-end bit to the north that's actually a precipice into a gravel-pit. *rolls eyes*

If you zoom out a bunch of steps on that map, it's my route tomorrow afternoon. I'm staying one night at my brothers' house in Adams, one night at my parents' house, lunch with my grandmother in Henderson Harbor, and back home Sunday night, late. [livejournal.com profile] melted_snowball will be working in Toronto on Saturday and up to no end of hijinks on Sunday. At least I hope he will.

It amuses me that I will have considerably less network connection to you all than [livejournal.com profile] chezmax does, who I'm currently chatting with on a ferry travelling from Hiroshima to Miyajima.

In other news, I have Photography Seminar homework which will be fun.


Tuesday, 25 September 2007 11:16 pm
I just spent a few hours in the company of the charming [livejournal.com profile] valkryor, who helped me catch up on some data-entry that was necessary but also tedious to do alone. We kibbutzed kibbitzed, we typed, and we shared her very tasty tea-cake. Work like this goes much better with friends, yes? It's times like this where I wonder whether other non-profit organizations have fun over data-entry work. My understanding is that yes, some do, and I'm completely down with that. (I've been told that I'm temporarily Mailing List Diva. Alas, the tiara does nothing for these jeans).

This week has felt like Thursday to me since yesterday. This is probably because I have a number of must-do things before Friday afternoon when I drive to upstate NY to see family.

This morning I visited our doctor's office, who I haven't seen in ages (I think it was on the occasion of my mosquito-caught-in-ear, possibly summer '05). I left with a prescription for physio for my sore right arm; a positive diagnosis of migraines for the headaches; and a prescription for an inhaler for possible (mild) exercise-induced asthma. That will be interesting; I've never used an inhaler. I wonder if it will have any useful effect.

Land of the Loon

Saturday, 23 June 2007 11:55 pm
Friday's citizenship ceremony was a reasonably banal exercise in officialdom (not High Officialdom, but certainly not minimal either). The judge was the same man who presided over [livejournal.com profile] melted_snowball's citizenship last year. There were 48 New Canadians, from 20 countries. Unlike d's, there was no one from Iran or Afghanistan. The judge spoke at length about the importance of being citizens. Karen Redman, the MP for the downtown area (but not for us), spoke and handed out our citizenship packets.

They gave us pins celebrating this being Canada's 60th year of citizenship. That still catches me; 61 years ago, Canadians were all British subjects.

Because some of the new citizens were from part of La Francophonie (Senegal?), we affirmed our Citizenship in both English and French. Apparently they only do the French during an English-language ceremony at the judge's discretion, plus they have less frequent French-language ceremonies as well.

In case you're curious: the Oath of Citizenship goes like so: "I affirm that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada, Her Heirs and Successors, and that I will faithfully observe the laws of Canada and fulfill my duties as a Canadian citizen." "J'affirme solennellement que je serai fidèle et porterai sincère allégeance à Sa Majesté la Reine Elizabeth Deux, Reine du Canada, à ses héritiers et successeurs, que j'observerai fidèlement les lois du Canada et que je remplirai loyalement mes obligations de citoyen canadien."

My parents took us out to lunch downtown, and my mom said she wants to go see a US Citizenship ceremony to compare. We expected that it would invoke the flag more, and likely involve a metal-detector.

On the whole, the ceremony was less of a big deal than graduation, but more of a big deal than turning 30. For me, the real big deal was Friday night, when we had something like 30 or 35 people here for the party!

What a lot of fun, from start to end. The only real disappointment was not having enough time to spend with everyone- it felt like a very short 5 or so hours to me!

Our old neighbours David and Lesley (and kids L. and A.) came. ..We'd really like them to be happy in Toronto, but we're doing our best to influence them to move back here. David's first comment was, "So this means that if you've sworn allegiance to the Queen, if we badmouth her, you have to beat us up?" Um, no. But since we're pacifists, must we have someone else beat them up? This led to the question of who at the party had actually sworn allegiance, versus being born in Canada or moving here as a kid. I've done a quick run-through of people at the party, and unless I'm mistaken, I think the only people who have declared citizenship were Karl, Jennifer, and Dan, all three of us Quakers. Huh. So I wonder whether there were any other declared Canadian citizens at the party?

You lot didn't drink as much as we expected. I am terribly terribly disappointed. Also, my parents weren't scandalized, though I don't know where they were during the Cleavage-Off that eventually went on in the living-room. Heh, I think I was talking to my Mom then, as she was trying to figure out who she'd just been talking to. My parents were both convinced I have great friends, and I'm certainly inclined to agree. If you were there and I didn't introduce you to my parents, I'm very sorry- I had tried to make that work.

What a great way to end the party; chilling with about fifteen of you LJ lot in the living-room, complete with back rubs and mellow conversation. Have I mentioned recently how grateful I am to have friends like you folk?

And additionally, a public thanks for all your party contributions.

Notable at the moment: [livejournal.com profile] fuzzpsych's record album whose title (and soon, image) are at top of this post. :)

August 2013

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