Sunday, March 28, 2010

Montreal Shenanigans

I want to move to Montreal. After I get back from France that is. I had such an awesome time there last weekend, and I felt comfortable in the city, and got around without even using the metro (that'll be another trip).

My friend Alex and her roommates were my hosts and their pink couch my bed for the weekend.

I got in Saturday morning, and made my way downtown to their place, and out to breakfast with Mitch and Sarah. Sarah is Alex's roommate and probably one of the highlights of my weekend, so much fun to hang out with. We've already made plans for the next trip up to Montreal. Sunday we all settled into a few hours of studying, paper writing, and all that fun stuff. After reaching part of our goal of 'a few hours' of studying, we needed to go shopping. The one thing Sackville does need more of, but my credit card doesn't, is retail. Socks and Undies are abound in Montreal though... not so much in Sackville.

Monday morning I had to get down to business and do what I'd gone to do. I made my way to the French Embassy with my soon-to-be co-worker, Del where we were going to apply for our Visas.

We ran into a few bumps in the application process, a few tears were shed, phone calls were made, hours flew past, and by the time we thought we were going to miss our flights, we got our Visas around 3pm, ran back to the hotel we'd ditched our stuff at, and had a cab driver that thought 10degrees was so cold that we were dripping warm by the time we got to the airport. Dude had the heat cranked in the cab.

After being switched on and off about 4 flights to Toronto from Montreal, I got there to find out my Toronto to Moncton flight, that was supposed to leave at 7, wasn't going to be leaving till 11pm. It was a long wait, but I ran into a bunch of Mount A people in the airport, so it was not as bad as waiting all by myself could have been.

2:30am is when I finally got into the car to drive back to Sackville. It was a long day of traveling, and Visa issues, but at least I got back, French Work Visa in hand, and more about France to come!!

Told you so...

I made it to the library. I found myself a desk- no luck getting a table, but whatever I will just cram in a cramped space.

I rarely see my profs in the library, but I guess today is the exception. One of my favourite german profs was scouring the stacks when I came up onto 2nd floor. I stopped and said hi and we chatted for a few moments, and much to my amusement she was doing the exact same thing most students stuck here (on a lovely afternoon no less) are doing, cramming and searching for a last minute source for an article she has due early this week. Too funny, you never think your professors have the same bad habits you do, but I doubt she's blogging about running into me as a way of procrastinating...

With that, I should go. But I wanted to tell you about my Montreal excursions and embassy drama, I still haven't talked much about the weekend in Halifax my class had a few weeks ago, and I am going to write anyway, when I know I should be writing my Gender Studies essays.

So, a few weeks ago my Gender Culture & the City class made our way to Halifax for a field study. It is sort of a crossover class of Urban Studies and Gender Studies, and with diversity lacking in many ways in Sackville, we thought we'd be study the Urban and Gender in a more Urban setting. Torontonians and Vancourverites may balk at the idea of Halifax as a city or a metropolis, but compared to Sackville, there is a lot to say for Halifax.

We started off at 'Canada's national Immigration museum' aka, Pier 21. It was an interesting tour, we had one of their research directors take us around and explain a lot of the exhibits. He wasn't shy to call out certain misrepresentations or deletions of history in certain exhibits, which was really cool and refreshing.

After the museum, we grabbed a snack and a pack of beer from Propeller , a microbrewery in Halifax, and made our way to the Hostel on Gottigen Street... apparently it is a sketchy part of town, but few of us knew this till we showed up. The whole hostel experience was an interesting one for someone who's never stayed in one before. It was cool that our entire class fit into one room though, since there are only 11 of us.

Chabaa Thai was where we went for dinner, it was delicious!! One of the girls in our class, Jenna, kind of took control there and made her recommendations, which we all pretty much agreed with. The Spring rolls were SO good.

After that, we went to a disappointing 3D movie, and then got ready to go out for the night!

A long night, and a few distractions later, ended up back at the hostel really late. Got a few hours of sleep before we all made our way to the Halifax Market, one of the best markets I've been to. Mind you, my Crepe was a bit burnt, but at that point I was just happy it was something other than Bridgestreet Cafe or Joeys.

To 'cap' it all off, we stopped in Truro on our way back to Sackville, checked out the Glooscap Heritage Centre and made the last leg of the trip home.

Ok, more about France next post, this one is too long already!!! Happy trails.

New Addictions

As exam time creeps up on university students everywhere, our internet and use of other procrastination tools goes up exponentially. At least, I know mines does. With the thought of 4 final papers that need a lot of work to be done, 1 pretty intimidating exam that I am really not looking forward to, and a daunting formal lab report due next week, I've got beyond the usually online streaming of Grey's Anatomy or Gossip Girl or checking the news updates at CBC or The Globe, and Facebook just wasn't cutting it anymore. These seemingly harmless procrastination tools, combined with my other addictions/obsessions, such as food have come together like a really really bad storm and I figured out the Food and Procrastination potential of twitter and blogs!!

The first one that I stumbled upon is a blog called It All Starts with Butter (I know, it sounds like a Paula Deen quote). It is written by this guy who writes all about events, restaurants, recipes and other amazing stuff in the Toronto area. Now, I know I'm not in Toronto, but with my siblings living there, I feel a bit left out of the city life, so this is a way for me to feel as if I know a few things about the city. There are also some mouth watering pictures of amazing food, like Toronto's best Meat Ball, and this guy must have been reading my mind when he wrote about this place called House On Parliament, which I hope to get to this weekend while I am in the city. Any of my friends will tell you, I love a place that makes good french fries and pub food- a good beer is always a plus too- and it seems like this place fits the bill. We'll see about that this weekend though, I'll keep you posted.

Through this blog, I've found countless other ones that have kept me entertained and distracted for what has probably amounted to hours this weekend. Combine that with all of the stuff going on to get ready for France... It's been a bit of a crazy week/(end). More details about France in my next post. Time to hike over the Library for the afternoon/evening.

Hope you're having a more productive Sunday than I am!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Summer...or should I say Été!

Got a call last week- moving to France for the summer to work for the Canadian National memorial at Vimy Ridge!

Stay tuned, more details to come. So excited for this opportunity! Now to sort through the Visa application process...

Saturday, March 6, 2010


Hey! Sorry it has been a while since I last posted, things have been just as crazy as ever around Sackville. I guess I should start with Reading Week break... well, less break, more reading.

I stayed here over the break to take a class with the head of the Geography Dept., Dr. Fox and an amazing person and friend of mine, Natalie Gerum. The week long intensive class was centered around Place-based pedagogy and learning, so it was very much a geography class, with a lot of academic philosophy thrown in there. I've come to refer to it as Existential Geography. It was probably one of the best classes I've ever taken at Mount A. I loved the fact that it was intensive- it made the classroom feel more like a community, though some may say place of commiseration, and we had a great week overall. I still have to give my final presentation, but I am really looking forward to it.

Since then, things have just been ridiculous. I almost wish I'd had another week to get the things the other profs expected to be done over the break, so that I could do them and do them well! A break to recover from a break? Reading week could turn into reading month...

I am off to Halifax this weekend with a class, we're doing a Field Study of the city. The class is called Gender, Culture, and the City. We've got most of those things in Sackville... But we're off to study a bit larger scale and experience what it is the city has to offer that Sackville doesn't. Purely geographically and academically, of course. :-)

We had an open house on campus last Friday that seemed to go pretty well. I don't think they got the numbers they were looking for, but I think that those that were here really enjoyed it.
Props to Rory F. for a pretty amazing day.

A few busy weeks ahead, then classes are done! Just over a month and they are done. More exciting news in my next post. Summer Plans!!