Canadian Down Under

Friday, March 31, 2006

Half a lifetime

Today's the day, half a lifetime ago, my dad died. It's hard to believe that, for me, he's been gone as long as he was alive.

And the truth is, it doesn't seem to matter how much time passes, but I still miss him. Especially today. I'm not sure why, but maybe it's the half life thing that's really gotten to me. Or maybe it's because when things were less than perfect, he either helped me not care or came to my defense.

He, himself wasn't perfect - I mean an alcoholic Irish man with bad parenting skills ? how could that be perfect? But in many ways he was better to me than anyone in my life since. But then again, maybe that's just because we were father and daughter.

But he would have stood up for me. Like when my brother didn't turn up to my farewell party the day I moved from Canada to Australia (the excuse was lame, so I won't even bother) he would have gone to his house and dragged him down. I wouldn't have had to just suck it up and pretend it was okay. Like this week, when another brother came up with an equally feeble excuse to not pick me up from the airport when I was going to visit him, my Dad would have made him, or even better, picked me up himself.

I miss that. I miss having someone I can rely on unquestioningly. I guess I was lucky.

When my dad died, I couldn't have imagined this many years without him. It saddens me that so much time has passed, but at the same time, it comforts and amazes me that the sense of loss has diminished, but his influence and presence has not.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

"The last thing you should do

is go out tonight!" So says my horoscope. The full version:

"This New Moon comes topped with an eclipse making it more powerful with more chance of change occurring in some aspect of your deeply personal life. This is the night to stay home, rest up and take time to think and ponder on things. For you may be given a personal challenge. The last thing you should do is go out tonight!"

I was only too willing to comply, but seeing as I so intelligently left not only my set of keys, but my spare keys on the kitchen counter this morning, that wasn't so easy.

Thirty minutes and $90 dollars later (I talked the guy down from $110 - kind of like a frequent buyer discount...) I got in.

I promise, I'm not going out.


A very versatile word - depending how you use it....

Now there's "sweeeeeet" -used when very excited or chuffed about something or "sweet" said in a sarcastic tone when meaning exactly the opposite or and there's just plain sweet - often used to describe kittens, puppies, babies or perhaps a genuinely nice, kind caring sweet person.

Now I've used it while excited and while being sarcastic (and sometimes while being a mixture of both) and I've even used it to describe a person I know - but NEVER have I heard it used to describe me (nor would I expect to...) until yesterday.

The horror!!!

Actually, it made me burst out laughing - and in the end I had to agree with them. My boss and I were talking about perception in the workplace and being taking seriously, yadda, yadda, yadda (scary to think this was just a general chat) but it arose out of a discussion about how she wants more people to become familiar with me and my capabilities (all good) and how sometimes when we're in the same meeting I can be overlooked.

Now this happens for a number of reasons - I am quieter with her in the room - but that's mostly out of respect and appropriateness but it also has to do with our voices. See, she has quite a....what's the word... commanding voice - not in a bad way, but it's strong and it carries and it makes people listen, whereas my voice, like my Mom's family and when I'm not drunk and/or yelling at my brothers (the two can happen at the same time....) is quite soft.

She thinks its sweet.

See - even you're laughing now.

Monday, March 27, 2006


Yesterday I was a little out of sorts. Restless. Kind of itchy in my own skin.

Today, it transformed itself into true grumpiness, which at first I labeled as Monday-itis, but I think it goes much deeper than that.

You know the funny thing is I had a pretty good weekend. I went for a long walk on a gorgeous day, had time for some errands that I've been meaning to do forever - the fun kind, went to a movie with friends and went to the beach among other things. All in all a relaxing, but quite enjoyable weekend.

Except I finished the weekend grumpy and I think I've figured out why. I think - for the first time in I don't know how long, I've actually been a little lonely.
And it's not that I'm alone. It's not that I have no friends. It's just this weekend, I felt the absence of that someone special. How I can feel the absence of something I can barely recall is beyond me, but in the interests of honesty - I felt it.
This from a girl who can pick herself up and move halfway across the world without anyone else. This from a girl who can travel alone for months. This from a girl who prefers to live on her own.
Didn't know what to do with myself tonight, so I went for a run. Now I'm too tired to feel anything.
Tonight's bedtime mantra is going to be: "and this too shall pass". Wish me luck

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Canadian athletes poor sports?

The Commonwealth Games that end today, have been hosted by Melbourne this year. Apparently it's been a great success. Well, a great success if you're an Australian. If you're a Canadian? Not so much...

Sporting events televised in Australia are spectacularly more biased to Australian athletes than the bias towards Canadian athletes when televised in Canada. Who'da thunk that was possible?

Unless of course something 'noteworthy' happens. And you know how Canadians are making headlines here in the Commonwealth games? By not showing up to the podium to collect their medals while the anthem plays for the gold medal winners. (However it's not just the bronze and silver medalists who aren't showing up - even a gold medal winner from Canada didn't show up.)

What's going on? When did Canadians become such poor sports? Don't get upset with me calling them poor sports, because that's how it's perceived here - the sports announcer even called them that during one ceremony presentation.

I never thought I'd say this - but it's been pretty tough to admit to being Canadian over the last week....

Am I missing something?

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Cutting off my nose....

So tomorrow's the triathlon. I'm heading up in a few hours to go pick up my colleague, then we'll be spending the night in Newcastle (from all accounts it's an old coal town - doesn't have the best rep so I'm intrigued...) and Sunday morning is the event.

The event where I'm be participating only as a cheerleading/moral supporting friend.


Well, a few reasons - but mostly because I don't have a bike. See - fuckwit has friends that do triathlons/bike races etc and he had arranged for me to borrow someone's bike, but after telling me he only wanted to be friends, I responded to his offer of the bike (note - that was in the same email. Men are so fucked) by saying something along the lines of "I'd rather crawl the bike leg of the race than ride it on a bike you got me."

Seemed logical at the time, but today my face is feeling a tad spited. (Yeah, I know that's not a real word, but work with me!)

I've never not done a race before, no matter how unprepared. It's a very strange feeling. I'm happy to cheer on my friend (it's her first race) but some small part of me still feels like a quitter....

'You're not welcome here'

I keep expecting to hear that after leaving comments on my friends' (tomama) blog.

My friend has a pretty wicked sense of humour - I'm pretty sure she's laughing - but some of the other comment leavers seem fairly...ummm... what's the word? serious.. intense... Along those lines, and I figure jokes about dropping kids on their heads will invariably get me in trouble one way or another...

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Get outta Dodge

Dodge - this one's for you....

I've been trying to catch up on reading some of my favourite blogs (been a little remiss of late - see post below for reason why) and you seem to have disappeared. Did you shut it down? or just move?

If you're reading and you're around - love to know what's happened to you.


Bone crushing fatigue. That's what I've got. Kind of explains the sketchy posts of late and I'm beginning to think explains the email-itis I've got as well.

(Email-itis - an allergy to the 'reply' button found on most internet/work email systems...)

I think some of my friends think I'm mad at them or don't care any longer, but the truth is, I'm just too tired to summon up the energy to write/answer emails. And no, it's not just because I'm lazy (although that may have been true in some instances in the past, it doesn't apply here...)

It's to the point that in order to do a pilates class in the evening, I need to have a nap after work. (Pilates class is mandatory and non-negotiable (I'm such a corporate wanker sometimes....) to keep my back in good working order) And I'm still sleeping through the night. I don't have a problem getting up in the morning - but I could continue sleeping if there was no such thing as an alarm.

So I've given myself to this weekend to feel right again. Maybe I've just got some kind of low grade bug. Maybe all the excitement of having a visitor and doing a kazillion things has worn me out. But if not better by early next week, I will go see a doctor.

Only issue is I have to find one.... Ahhh, the trials of moving to a new country..... That is what this blog was supposed to be about.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Today's Horoscope

is as follows:

"It is a simple fact of life that there are some people you like and some people you don't - and you don't have to feel guilty about it. Do your best to stay on good terms with someone you would rather not have to work with but, if it doesn't work out, don't think you have to be nice. Let them know what you think of them - and why."

Bad idea. Bad. (Read in the same tone Julia Robert's used in Stepmom when she was telling the kid how to confront the guy who dumped her, saying 'Big mistake. Big.')

I don't know what's happened to me in the last few weeks, but I feel like I'm completely myself again. Something I haven't quite felt like in years.

That's not necessarily a good thing.....

See, in the last few years, I've acquired a filter - something akin to me being able to say I've become...what's the word... tactful. But that's all gone out the window. There's no holding back anymore. I will admit that it makes me feel better - but I can't say the same for those around me. I mean, my friends think it's funny (and I'm pleased to realise that my friends out here are good enough friends that I'm not too much for them - or too shocking...)

But that doesn't mean I should be given free reign as per my horoscope.......nobody deserves that. No matter how much they piss me off...

Though how much fun would it be were I to run into fuckwit??

Hmmm, now he deserves it.

Friday, March 10, 2006

The things I see......

Maybe I'm short tempered. Maybe I'm just better mannered than some, but the last week has been interesting.

A colleague of mine was at her desk and as I walked by, something caught my eye....but not in a good way. If I remember correctly, I looked over at her because she was saying something to me, but I couldn't figure it out because she kind of mumbled. When I looked at her quizzically, she responded "oh, I'm just picking my teeth. You just have to do these things."

Ummm. No. No, you don't. At least not at work. However, I must say, this is the say woman that continually manages to block up the toilets, so I shouldn't be surprised....

I was reading a memo the other day and I think I counted the word 'whilst' 15 times. Is this just an Australian thing? It sounds so weird! And geeky. I mean, I obviously have heard of the word before, but I don't believe anyone in North America every uses it. Am I wrong?

I watched the Oscars the other night (a day later than North America so I already knew the winners) but I have to say:
- George Clooney never disappoints
- Jon Stewart was SOOO funny. Especially since the audience didn't seem to get him. Made it even better.

At the bus stop today, there was this young man/kid (early 20s) who was pretty well groomed - you know, nice shirt which was ironed, clean cut, shaved, styled hair (the style here is pretty much hair spiky with glue - the surfer look). He looked pretty together talking on his mobile phone but when he got off, he walked to the curb and SPIT on the road. In front of the 20 or so people waiting for the bus. Now, in my world this is considered rude. Am I missing something?

I watched the movie Crash the other night. (Been meaning to before the Oscars, but once it won, I HAD to see it.) I loved it. It's been so long since a movie made me hold my breath. And Crash made me do it twice. I'm so glad it won. I did see Brokeback Mountain and I truly believe the more deserving film won. Tonight I'm going to see Walk the Line (Australia's movie release dates are about 6 months behind North America).

I'm suppose to be working at the moment. Work is so over rated!

Blue Moon

I just realised that yesterday, I neither turned on the TV or logged into my computer at home.

I'll try to make up for that today...

Tuesday, March 07, 2006




Remember that old Kleenex commercial? You know the one where the lady gets on the bus on a really crappy winter day - the sleety, snowy, windy, cold kind of a day. The bus is jam packed and she sneezes because she's got a cold and everyone in the packed bus tries to inch as far away from her as possible? Wait - on second thought, maybe it wasn't a Kleenex commercial.... maybe it Tylenol Cold & Flu..... Whatever. But the commercial tagline is:

"When you don't want to be near people, and they don't want to be near you."

Well, welcome to my world today. I am SOOOOOOO grumpy. And you know? I really don't have a good reason. I mean I could come up with some excuses like:
  • I'm sleep deprived.
  • I've hurt my dodgy back again
  • I have only crap tasks to do today at work
  • I'm single yet again....still....
  • There are no prospects to resolving the evil of singledom anywhere
  • When the announcement that I'd be filling in for my boss when she was on leave was made - some of my co-workers didn't take it so well... (I'd tell you how they were whispering about me and I caught them, but then you'd only think I was paranoid. Will high school never end?)
  • I'm spending too much money and can't stop. (Because I like it)
  • I'll never be able to buy a house because I spend too much money
  • I'm heavier than I want to be (and no one is disagreeing with me...)
  • I'm too curvy a build to ever be considered skinny
  • I haven't won the lottery

Okay, I know I'm becoming ridiculous...yet still, I could go on. And I know that I have a place to live, food to eat and friends and family who love me and I should count my blessings, but.... I just don't feel like it today.

An old friend from business school days used to call times like these 'PBP'. Also known as 'post bender paranoia.' But I'm not quite suffering from paranoia today, just grumpiness. It's like a hangover from my hangover.

I think I'll call it hangover apathy.

Hmmm. Fits.

Monday, March 06, 2006

The benefits of drunken blogging...

- you have a written account of what happened the night before
- your written account often reminds you of things you would have otherwise forgotten....

Could have done without the late night harassment, but it was nice to be reminded that someone actually asked me ID. In some small ways that makes up for the most horrendous hangover (hardly seems fair considering I only had six drinks - but my body's relationship and adverse reaction to alcohol is in no way proportional to the amount of alcohol consumed.....) which I'm only now - at 1am - recovering from.

Felt old until I reminded myself I got carded!

Sunday, March 05, 2006

I got drunk tonight

and I have to admit it was fun.

It's been such a long time. ONly six drinks and I'm slathering. (You know what i'm talking about.)

Low point of the evening? getting dropped off at home and having drunk boys harass my friend for a ride home. When I said no - one of them called me a dyke. I called him a fuckwit and his friend apologised.

As he should.

High point? Being asked for ID and my answer being hysterical laughter?(poetic license there.....)

I'm getting too old for this shit....

Friday, March 03, 2006

My new bed

I just bought this bed today - except in a dark wood.

I love it.

Hope it fits in my room......

Thursday, March 02, 2006

I just ate a whole pizza all by myself

It was so YUM!!!!!

So next week, when I complain about feeling fat. Remind me of today.... Although in my own defense, I went running last night, swam today at lunch and have only eaten a salad all day - so I deserve it!!

(The above sentence is proof that I can justify anything given enough motivation...)

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

I'm in a tree-hugger kind of mood


Well, because I had such a good day yesterday, the good feelings are spilling over today. I'm sure it won't last, but I had to share while it was happening.

So what's been happening? Regular sex? You gotta be kidding (and who knew you could be so funny?)

Well, in answer to the question above, nothing particularly spectacular, but a whole lot of little things. The problem with being dumped is that you can (especially if you're the personality type that I am) take rejection personally (really - is there any other way to take it?). And instead of realising that really the guy is a fuckwit and didn't deserve you in the first place, you think you are the one who is the loser.

But not yesterday.

Yesterday was a day of unsolicited compliments. I can't tell you the number of people who decided that yesterday was the day to tell me what a wonderful person I am. Seriously. It started with practically my first conversation of the day at the chiropractor, I was speaking to the assistant who was helping me with something and she asked how I was this week. I had mentioned the previous week that I was having a bad week but had not mentioned why - so yesterday I told her. I told her I had been a tad down because I'd been dumped and the first thing out of her mouth? "Well, that's his loss because you're a lovely person."

Totally unsolicited and so very appreciated.

Then my day ended with a pilates class and as I was checking in, the receptionist, Amy, who is always so cheerful and friendly (and remembers everybody by name - now that's a talent!) and I got to talking. I hadn't seen her in a while because she's been on holidays and I was busy with my guest, so I made a smart-ass comment like, "Miss me?" (One of my favourite taglines) to which I was expecting an equally smart-ass response, but instead she said yes. In fact, what she said was something along the lines "I did miss you. You're so lovely that it's always so nice to see you. "

She's so genuinely sweet that even I couldn't crack a joke then....

So the world's a kind and gentle place these days. I think the cosmic world is trying to tell me something and I've decided to listen.