Mr. Noodle

Mr. Noodle
Mr. Noodle

Friday, October 7, 2011

what a week it has been

It's hard to believe that a week ago I was on the way back to the Island with Dan. That two weeks ago, I figured by now I will be settling into my new life in North Carolina.

Well, if there is one virtue that Dan and I share, it is our adaptability. We seem to be able to cope well in a crisis and to support each other in times of need. Yes getting rejected at the border sucks. So did having the cat try to wriggle her way out of her harness at a roadside stop, forcing me to clamp down on her hard lest she run away and climb up a tree in the forest. This left me with deep gashes, bleeding, with a torn (favourite) shirt, and a wicked bruise on my knee. But I was not going to risk losing my cat. I'm mostly recovered from my lacerations, and the bruise is getting smaller.

As I'm getting used to the idea of being here at least until Christmas, I am actually excited about the things I can do while I'm here. On the top of my list is visit all my friends. That alone could take until Christmas! (I am so lucky). I'll spend all of next week looking for jobs and I expect to have at least one offer by the end of the week - there are tons of jobs in Victoria right now. While it would be great to get a job in health informatics research or at least something to do with writing, I can do just about anything I set my mind do. Mountain Equipment Co-op (Canada's REI) is hiring.

Dan and I were walking around in downtown Victoria today. Oddly enough, that's something we haven't spent much time doing. When we lived in Victoria and East Sooke, our downtown Victoria experience was largely just parking somewhere and going to a restaurant. We love food, after all. Today we decided to go down to Munro's Books, a long-standing institution of Victoria. Again! We made off not having spent any money but I have decided on the slow cooker book I want - the one by America's Test Kitchen. When half of the house's current inhabitants clear out in the next few days, I will set to my cooking experiments.

I don't know what it is, but I can't stop thinking about food. As in cooking, technique, and gourmet flavours. Dan has been experimenting with food and watching all those cooking programs for years and I was the happy guinea pig for all his experiments. This last week since we've been together in a food lover's paradise, I too am taking a ravenous interest in honing my skills. I'm already thinking about what the family might have for Christmas dinner (our Pizza Christmas was a hit in 2009). I guess Dan and I have been able to distill what is really important to us in our life, which is each other, and food. Would the family be okay with okonomiyaki for Christmas dinner? What about a line-up of slow cooker dishes? Thinking, thinking...

Oh, Munro's. It's such a great book store. I love Bolen, for it's massive selection and proximity to bathrooms (it's in a mall), but Munro's has a more focused selection, not chosen for mass appeal but for the discerning reader. There were easily five books in the cooking section I could have walked away with. I also had a chance to see Melissa Morgan-Oakes' newest book about knitting socks toe-up 2-at-a-time. I learned how to knit socks with her first book, so I'm a big MMO fan.

But I can't buy stuff right now. Can't. Need an income first. Victoria has so much to offer to people who have money. I'm not even allowing any yarn shop indulgences until I can confidently pay my bills. But when I do have a bit of extra cash for my knitting habit, I will need things like a shawl pin, some buttons, some Trekking and Wollmeise yarn. It would be nice to someday be able to afford enough nice yarn for a sweater - I've never knit a sweater for myself before.

Which brings me to Christmas again. It's terrible. I usually start thinking about Christmas in July - as in what I will knit for everyone. I don't need to knit for everyone (and in truth, this year, if I do have money, I have some fabulous gift ideas for everyone. It's very helpful to live under the same roof as someone to know what they would appreciate as gifts). I just like knitting. For everyone. And that might mean the projects for myself get set aside until Selfish Knitting Season (in January).

While we were in Mountain Equipment Co-op, Dan encouraged me to look at winter coats. I don't have one. Not any more. Got rid of all my cold weather stuff in anticipation of moving to a hot climate. I found one I like, and as it happens, it is only $145.

I fit into a size Medium! I didn't want a black one, but I wasn't fond of the plum colour, so black will have to do. I will have to wait until November to buy it (money) because today we bought me new running shoes.

We went to Frontrunners and I must have tried on 14 pairs. I have had bunion surgery on both feet, one of which is coming back, and my feet are wide. They are also pronating slightly so I need a bit of arch support. I tried on every suitable women's runner that came in a wide size, and they were all too tight. Tried a few men's and voila! A perfect fit of asics. Turns out they were the cheapest pair.  Not only that, but with the Victoria Marathon happening this weekend, I got an extra 20% off. I will keep a log of how many miles I put on these shoes, because marathon runners advise that after 300-500 miles, shoes need replacing. I have never suffered any real running injury, and would like to keep it that way, so I follow all the advice of the marathon runners that have come before. I am determined to run a marathon before I turn 39 in 2013. Join me?


  1. Ooh, I just might take you up on the Marathon - I'll need a bit of training (just a bit ;-) though...

  2. To keep track of the milage on your shoes, go to It's free to join!

    Keep your chin up - we're wishing you the best here in Texas!

  3. Territorial A-Holes drawing lines in the ground, threatening you with incarceration! That pisses me off! They just arrived here yesterday and say "Nobody is allowed in without MY permission!"

    We've evolved this behavior for resource security. Others suffer because our instinct is to withhold resources for our own kind. With humans communicating across planet Earth, how long until we realize there is no "others"?

    We are all kin; or maybe just the last chance for hominids who couldn't figure it out.

    Yeah, it makes me angry that you gotta go through this, Stacey. Countless families are suffering with you. Many of my friends at UHS are Vietnamese and have the same experiences with Canada. I've watched several heart-wrenching movies on this theme lately. In the movies, there is always *hope*, because some survive the ordeal.

    You'll be one of the survivors - I know it! :)



  4. Frostbreaker parkas are fantastic (I have used mine 2 winters now and it is still looking great). Just a word of caution- I worked at MEC for two years- and those parkas sell out FAST! By early December there usually isn't much left in the way of sizing.

  5. Thanks Mandi - I went out the next day and bought it. Just in time too, it just got REALLY cold!