The Swamp

Feb. 20th, 2014 09:09 pm
dawn_felagund: Little Red Riding Hood and the Big Bad Wolf. (little red riding hood)
There is this awful virus going around school that, as far as any of us can tell, originated with a student that was sent to school sick by his group home. (A common occurrence.) That student was restrained last Wednesday, and most everyone involved in the restraint become ill over the snow break and/or weekend, including Bobby. One of the other teachers was floored with a 103-degree fever; one of the one-to-one aides who spends a lot of time in class with this student was relegated to bed Wednesday through Saturday with chills, fever, and body aches. The teacher went to the doctor, and it was pronounced not to be the flu, so my colleagues on the self-contained side of the building have nicknamed it The Swamp.

Well, I have been successful in resisting The Swamp but pushed myself too hard on Tuesday. I was tired when I got home but had a lot to do and so jumped right back into work and worked until 10 PM with a break for supper. Stupid stupid stupid. By second period the next day, it was very obvious that I had likewise come down with The Swamp. I was miserable yesterday. Luckily, it seems to be a minor case with me, and I was much better today, although still tired and achy. I have been taking it easy, as much as I can. I am finally finished with my Enlightenment class, so the lack of coursework is a welcome reprieve. I did have a pile of IEPs that came suddenly due. Because of all the time we've missed due to snow (seven days so far), a bunch of IEPs had to be rescheduled, and it seems everyone is backed up or behind, with some IEPs past due even. This was the first time that I had to cry "uncle!" and request an extension on my IEPs. Most of them were, thankfully, seniors, so I didn't have much revision to do in terms of goals; I usually leave the goals alone for students who are going to graduate soon, although I may tinker with the objectives to better reflect that student's progress. As of about five minutes ago, the last of the overdue IEPs is done. The next isn't due until March 5.

This winter has been awful for sickness. I have been sick with three colds and one case of conjunctivitis. Bobby has been sick with three colds, one of which left him with an awful cough for about a week. Both of us usually get one cold, which lasts no more than a day or two. The best we can figure is that with the kids cooped up in group homes because of the snow, they are spreading germs even more than they already do. We've both been sanitizing the desks in our classrooms, but we have so much contact with the students that it is hard to avoid picking up what they bring to school with them, especially since they are often sent to school sick.
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The Dog's Breakfast beneath the Cut )
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This week represents that last major hurdle before I start student teaching in February. I finish my classroom observations this week, and I finish my linguistics courses. Once those are done, I can send off the last of my internship application. And then ... well, there's still work, one graduate class, and the holidays, but the next few weeks seem blissfully devoid of significant obligation.

The holiday weekend went well. I have pictures from Thanksgiving but don't feel like getting up and getting the camera, uploading them, blah blah blah, so that will have to wait. Bobby brought home a cold from his school and was sick for most of the weekend. He passed it on to me on Saturday, but it was thankfully short-lived. We went to see a holiday show up in Lancaster with my parents on Saturday. They have the same luck with couple friends that Bobby and I do; the couple they used to do stuff with ended up getting divorced, so they asked Bobby and me this year instead. Of course, right in the middle of the show was when the worst of the cold descended on me like a ton of bricks. I still had a good time, however. My dad kept saying how weird it was to see me wearing heels. Our one dress-nice excursion last year was snowed out, so it had been over a year since anyone saw me in anything but my dumpy flats and long skirts.

This weekend will be busy as well. On Saturday, we're seeing Scythian down in DC, and on Sunday, we're going to cut down our Christmas tree. At this point, I'm shouldering forward and hoping to reach that point with at least a shred of sanity remaining!
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That's the noise I make as I surface briefly from the eternally churning sea of chaos that my life is lately to jot some notes in my journal.

As the previous sentence suggests, things remain pretty crazy here. I have about half of my student-teaching application packet completed, including having gone for fingerprints on Monday and having both the Maryland and FBI background checks started. I'm trying to pack in the last of my classroom observations, which means insanely long workdays writing 8 or 9 articles a day on some days so that I don't have even insanely longer days of five hours in the classroom, followed by 6 articles in the evening. (Today will be an 8-article day! I should be working on #7 now ...)

The administration of the university is not making this any easier. I don't believe that they respond to emails. I sent an email, oh about a week ago, to the person supposedly in charge of background checks. The information in the application packet is vague and unhelpful, so I wanted clarification before I spent money on checks I didn't need. I was told to email this person by the internship director. A week later ... *chirpchirp* Crickets. Speaking of the internship director, I emailed her half of my application packet on Sunday, and it's now going on Thursday (workday-wise), and I still haven't gotten any sort of acknowledgment from her, much less an answer to my question about whether I can use my GRE scores for Praxis 1. This is my second time asking this question with no response. It's becoming very annoying. The SWG--a volunteer-led group devoted to fan fiction and drooling over Elves--should not be better run and managed than a university, but it does frequently seem that way to me. At least it makes me feel about my own organizational/leadership abilities.

It occurs to me that this will all be over someday, and I will read this entry and cackle madly about how crazy my life was. I'm looking forward to that day.

Now onto #7!!

Murphy!

Aug. 4th, 2010 11:52 am
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Remember Seven in '07? I moved into my house two days before it started and was without Internet for all but the last few days. Running a website without Internet access is fun!

Maybe it's something to do with SWG events. Here I am, three years later, on the brink of another major SWG project, and guess what? The home Internet is out!!

It's supposed to be fixed on Friday. I'll be at the library today and tomorrow to get my DS articles written and posted, but I just wanted everyone to know that I'm about to outdo even myself with respect to slowness of replying to things.

(Of course, I was on the brink of having Birthday entirely caught up when the 'net went out last night.)

grrrrr

ETA! I came home from lunch, and it was marvelously and miraculously fixed! Let's hope it holds. Birthday stuff will be caught up tonight.

ETA the Second: Not quite caught up, but close. I would be except for playing with the chickens, going with Bobby to watch a big-A thunderstorm roll across the mountains, and dwelling too long over a too-good supper of mushroom Swiss melts and vegetable chowder.
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Bobby and I had just sat down to supper on the patio, and it started to rain. Because we have a big ol' umbrella, we didn't go in right away, but then it really started to rain, so we carried our suppers indoors and watched/listened to the blissful sound of rain hitting our poor dry soil.

This is the third rainfall we've had in as many days. Bobby's CoCoRaHS gauge shows that we've gotten a quarter-inch today. Dare I hope that this trend might continue? Then I could post about something other than the weather??

In other news, I've dropped temporarily from the sociable world because I've decided that, if I hope to have any writing/creative time this summer, then I need to knock out my to-do list. And I'm making good progress. Then I can go back to fun stuff again!

Now for getting everything posted about SWG's upcoming birthday ... (and you Silmfolk are all going to contribute some writing and artwork, right? *hint hint* ;)
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When Bobby and I were in Ireland for our last night, we went to a dinner and presentation called "Food, Fairies, and Folktales" that was about ... well, exactly what the title describes! The speaker who presented it was phenomenal, and one of the things he said was common once upon a time in Ireland was for men who maybe had one pint too many and maybe spent a night in a ditch to "blame it on the fairies": that they had been hijacked by the Good People and, therefore, bore no blame for their arrival home in the gray hours of the morning.

He also pointed out that it is quite common, among farmers who have a fairy fort or fairy tree on their property, to avow that "I don't believe in fairies but I'm sure not touching that tree!"

Well, I'm a rational person and prefer to confine gods and fairies and the like to the wilds (and they are wild!) of my imagination, but I can only blame our first week back from Ireland on the fairies. I think one might have sneaked into our luggage and, upon finding himself or herself in the land of the free and the home of the big-box corporations, got pissed and took it out on us.

First, I was driving home from work on Interstate 70, going about 70 mph (it's called "70" for a reason!) and smelled burning rubber and realized. Oh. Crap. Yes, because my tire had blown out. Luckily, it was a back tire and, even more luckily, the driver in the lane next to me wasn't on a cell phone and saw what happened and managed to exercise a modicum of courtesy in backing off enough to let me limp onto the shoulder.

Only a few days later, the home Internet simply stopped working. Let me just say that it is hard to design and run two websites and teach an online class without Internet access.

Next, the TV started behaving oddly. We had inherited a ridiculously large television set from my grandparents a few years ago. The picture started having a blue "ghost" to it. It was unwatchable. But it's under warranty, right? Hmm.

I am teaching an online class on basic web design for writers and artists. Each Friday morning, I convert the Word file of that week's lesson to a PDF file to upload to the class's group. I've been converting Word files to PDFs on that laptop for years. I got my laptop fired up, and there was Word, and there was Acrobat Pro, but they refused to speak to each other. I had to delay the lesson a week pending my dad reinstalling the Adobe software for me.

Saturday, we had a family party in honor of Lancelot's second birthday. The Goldens get a small, cheap steak for their birthdays, and Bobby went to photograph them while they were enjoying it and discovered that our digital camera would no longer focus.

Okay. Five days. Five things, all mechanical- or tech-related. I had been making ice cream and had some good heavy cream left over, so we did put a dish of cream out on our step one night to appease the fairy. Whether coincidence or just because there was nothing left to break, the incidents stopped after that.

Of course, that was the point at which we stopped dealing with the supernatural and started dealing with U.S. corporate bureaucracy. Last year, we ditched both Comcast and Verizon for our Internet because they both suck, but Verizon owns the cables that our small ISP uses, so we had to place a service call with and wait two weeks for Verizon anyway. We got the auto shop down the street to order tires for my car, but the wrong ones were sent by the warehouse, so I still don't have a spare on my car. And Bobby called to have the television fixed only to discover that what is broken is the most common part to break on a TV like ours, and so, naturally, it is not covered under the warranty. Because that would, you know, make sense.

Personally, I preferred dealing with the fairy.
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This morning, I woke up and there was snow on the ground. Snow! In April! In Maryland! Yes, I know we live in north-north Maryland now but still. Snow in April is ridiculous. Hasn't it ever heard the saying that March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb? What the hell kind of lamb is this? A Monty Python killer lamb??

I know I'm not old enough to tell uphill-both-ways stories yet, but I don't ever remember snow in April.

This has been the longest winter that I can recall. It started the first week of November. I remember this well because our Halloween party was on 1 November, and we had a lot of people attending for our small house, so I wished very hard for a day warm and pleasant enough that many of them would want to go outside ... and I got it. 1 November was gorgeous! And, a few days later, temperatures dropped precipitously, and I felt as though I'd paid for that one perfect day. And it stayed cold and miserable, so much that Bobby and I were both expecting a white Thanksgiving. (Which we didn't get because, despite winter hanging around for five months, we had a record low snowfall. Double boo!)

I'm ready for winter to be done and over! I miss baring my arms in public and my legs below the knee! I really needed a long skirt and boots today, but I refuse to wear boots in April. So my legs were cold. Oh flippin' well.

([livejournal.com profile] angelica_ramses, has the miserable summer stuck so adamantly in your part of the world as miserable winter has here? I do hope not!)

On a positive note, it is Bobby's birthday today. The old man is 28. Because we are planning a trip to Ireland this summer, he has refused all birthday gifts from me to save for the trip. We did, however, have an excellent dinner at the Thai restaurant in Westminster. And I'm off for the rest of the week, and Bobby is on Spring Break, so we can stay up together until the small hours of the morning. We're hoping for weather pleasant enough tomorrow to inaugurate the hiking season.
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Yesterday, Dad set up a new desktop computer that he'd built for us. This is my first post on the new computer! Yes, I'm sentimental.

Since my laptop is Pengolodh Lord and Loremaster of Gondolin, and Bobby's laptop is Rúmil of Tirion (even though he calls it Darwin), then this computer is Elemmírë of Taniquetil because, just like a Vanya, he always stays in one place.

What have I done on Elemmírë so far? Well, the first thing I did was answer a whole bunch of email because the network was out at work today, so I was behind. I've downloaded the SWG website files from Pengolodh's folder on Data Deposit Box. I've added Gmail, the SWG, and my webhost to the shortcut toolbar because Eru forbid I should have to type out the monstrously long "www.silmarillionwritersguild.net"! Installed Java so that I can use the webhost. I answered an LJ comment from [livejournal.com profile] a_wayfarer *waves*. I'm about to set up Data Deposit Box because I hyperventilate at the thought of having non-backed-up files on Elemmírë, even though the likelihood of losing a hard drive on a computer not even two days old? I'm ridiculous, what can I say?

And I am listening to streaming web music! I know there is probably a better name for it, but I don't know it because Pengolodh doesn't have a sound card, so--as I remarked to a friend the other day--the whole YouTube, streaming media craze? Totally missed it. I watched a couple of Obama speeches on YouTube at work during the few days that the blocking software was down, but that's been it. I have a group of RL friends who constantly send links to videos, and I find myself getting irritated with them, as though they should intuit that I cannot watch them ... well, rather, I cannot listen to them.

So, flist, in welcoming Elemmírë of Taniquetil to the wild and woolly world of the Internet and fandom and my online life in particular, I would like to ask those of you with a favorite online video to link to it here so that I can finally watch some videos online. I know, I'm a dork, but it's amazing how left out I've felt because I can't watch freakin' online videos and everyone else can.

One last note before I wrap up this entirely too long and utterly pointless post: I am so spoiled by Pengolodh that I never realized how lazy I've become on the Internet. In the breakneck pace of my everyday life, I find shortcuts wherever I can. I was filling out an online petition on Elemmírë today, and I enter my first name and typed "D" and waited ... for it to auto-complete. And I was angry when I had to type out my full name, my full email address, and my other details! Pengolodh would have done all of that for me. But, Elemmírë, I'll give you time to learn. *pats*

Now I really need to send out the first batch of B2MeM marathon emails ... yikes!
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Bobby and I went to dinner tonight at a Mexican restaurant in Hanover, which is a town in southern Pennsylvania, about twenty minutes north of us. I seriously think Hanover might be one of the weirdest places on the planet. It's very small-townish, and there are a lot of businesses that sell rather odd combinations of items. Once, in my glee over these bizarre establishments, I cackled that Hanover is like driving through a U.S. "main street" town in a very odd alternate universe. Here's a list of the funniest and most bizarre. Keep in mind that these are all on the main street! I sometimes wonder what wonders exist as one ventures deeper into the wilds of Hanover, PA.

  • Real estate and firewood. I guess it's handy to be able to buy your new home and the wood to heat it with. Bobby has a much more cynical view, given the current economy and, especially, the real-estate market: Can't sell your house?? We'll at least give you its value if we can sell it as firewood!


  • Dad's Auto Detailing, Ebay Store, and Pawn Shop. We just noticed the addition of the pawn shop tonight. I suppose you can go and get your car cleaned, unload some old Barry Manilow LPs, and buy a gun with the serial number filed off, all at the same time.


  • Erick's Record Shop and Mexican Store. I'd imagine this is handy if you want to pick up the new Fifty Cent CD and also have a hankering for a burrito.


  • The Hanover Spice Company. In need of a bottle of fennel, a dozen vanilla beans, or jar of fresh-ground cumin? Think this is the place to go in downtown Hanover for such items? Wrong! However, if you need a naughty DVD or crotchless, edible panties, you're in luck!


  • Close-out Store: Furniture, Clothing, Office Supplies, and Groceries. I'm not sure I'd want to buy close-out groceries. Bobby's grandmother buys food items from such a store. One time, knowing that we liked cold coffee beverages, she bought us each one of those bottled Starbucks frappucinos. Bobby and I were drinking them, and we both looked at each other and said, "Do these seem weird to you?" They were ... chunky. There was chunks of dairy product in them. We flipped over the bottles and discovered that the sell-by date was two years past!


  • The Funniest! Andrew Crooks, Certified Public Accountant. I'm sure this guy is a marvelous CPA. However, there's just something bad-sitcom-funny about having your taxes done by a guy whose name is Crooks.


  • The Grossest! Hot and Crusty Italian and Mexican Fusion Grill. I don't even want to imagine what "Italian and Mexican fusion" consists of. Nachos made with ground Italian sausage and ricotta cheese? Pepperoni burritos served with a side of mushroom-jalapeño risotto? Lasagna layered with molé sauce and salsa verde? As though that doesn't sound gross enough, "hot and crusty"? Really?? I remarked to Bobby that it sounds more like the slogan for a wound treatment center than a restaurant. "If it's hot and crusty, come see us!" Nor--having worked in a restaurant for six years--does the word "crusty" make me hungry. It makes me think more of a deep fryer in bad need of cleaning, or some of our experiments with leaving food under the heat lamp all night to see what would happen.


  • The Most Bizarre! Candynut Shoppe: Chocolates, Nuts, and Electric Shaver Parts. I'm really not even sure what to say about this one. I ... No, I really don't know what to say about this one.

    Except that it's very close to Hot and Crusty!


I ♥ Hanover!
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For some reason, I keep thinking that it's the last week in March instead of just barely into the second. So I keep going into the hurry-up offense with respect to things that need to be done for April in the SWG. And then I realize that it's the 11th* and I still have more than half a month left!

Back to Middle-earth Month 2009 has been more successful than my wildest dreams (which are pretty damned wild). Perhaps that's why it feels like the end of the month: because we reached 100 links today, which I would have been happy to have for the whole month.

Or maybe because, oddly, my term paper for African-American Literature is due in the middle of the term, not at the end.

Or maybe just because, after months of being swamped with work and school and extracurriculars (*stern look at the SWG*), I've finally gone nucking futs.

I have lots of comments and such to reply to and have not forgotten! But ... *points to B2MeM* *wubbles*

Also, the first person to correctly name the movie whence my icon comes will get to request a story or somesuch.

Okay, now it's off to finish the novel for my African-American Literature term paper and then ... *crash!*

* Yes, I know. It's actually the 10th. I just proofread my entry and realized that. I'm leaving it, because it proves my point.
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This is my way of affirming to everyone in LJLand that I am still alive: by telling you stupid stories from my daily life.

Act I

The scene is early in the morning, about 6:45 a.m., and Bobby and I are both preparing to go to work. Bobby makes himself some oatmeal, so I ask him to leave the kettle on so that I can use what's left of the hot water to make the travel mug of tea that I require to get through my hour-and-fifteen-minute morning commute.

I am not a morning person, so it generally takes me forever and a half to get ready, not because I concern myself with vanities like putting on makeup or even combing my hair, but because I tend to find myself in the middle of doing things but really staring into space for the past five minutes.

So, by the time I get to the kettle, much of the water has been boiled away.

To understand how Act I concludes, one must understand our tea kettle. It is a two-piece kettle, with a separate lid that in no way locks into the kettle itself, thus easily dislodging itself. Because I didn't want to put on more water and didn't want to chance watering down my caffeine tea with warm tap water, I tipped the kettle as far as it would go to drain it of every. last. drop.

I tipped it until the lid tumbled right off and onto the floor.

Which released all the steam trapped in there for fifteen minutes by that point, directly onto the first knuckles of my right hand clutching the kettle.

And I still had to top off my travel mug with warm water from the tap.

Needless to say, my knuckles screamed at me all the way to work. They are now a charming pink color and puffed up a little, but no blisters so far, and they've chilled out enough that I can comfortably type. Right now, I don't feel inclined to ask for much more than that.

Act II

I would forget to bring my head with me if it was not attached to my shoulders and further attached to my person by virtue of my long hair, which tends to get caught down in my trousers and so on. I forget my travel mug at work just about every other day. This I know because, every other day, I have to take Bobby's.

Today, I was determined not to forget it. Determined!

When I go to work, I more resemble a pack mule tricked out for a two-week trek across a featureless desert than a young woman going to work at her quiet office job. First is Pengolodh Lord of Gondolin, who travels in his laptop case (yes, Gondolin) and is as heavy as the super-tall "real" Pengolodh Lord of Gondolin probably would have been, enough that I have to walk on a slant to shoulder his weight. Add to that one or two cinder-block-sized literature anthologies for my schoolwork. One will usually fit in Gondolin with Pengolodh; the other usually has to be carried in my arms. Also in my arms is my hardback paper Bag of Weasels. Half of the week, I take my lunch in an old grocery sack, which may or may not include a gallon-sized glass jar of water (since I trust the public water in Jessup about as much as I trust drinking the water that pools out back on the parking pad). And of course my purse, which is large enough to hold a paperback book; that and a strap long enough to wear it over my shoulder are my only two requirements for a purse. Finally is, of course, the travel mug of tea.

The only things that I can remember to bring to and from work with me are Pengolodh and my schoolbooks. So, if I want to remember to take something home with me, I either have to put it in Gondolin or set it on top of my schoolbooks on my desk.

So, upon finishing my tea today, I sat the travel mug on top of my schoolbooks so that I would not forget it.

However, because I had not yet begun my schoolwork, then I had to move it again in order to open the books to read them. Which set me up to forget the travel mug, which I did.

Luckily for me, it was not all a wash. Once I got in the car and realized my error, I also realized that I had left Bobby's travel mug in the car the day prior. Well here was something of an opportunity for redemption! I could barely carry all that I had with me anyway, so I would bring Bobby's mug into the house with me rather than mine, wash it up, and use it tomorrow, per tradition. Tomorrow, hopefully, I could remember to bring mine home and bring them both into the house.

I drove home (see Act III). Upon arrival, I made a very strong mental note to remember Bobby's travel mug. Because it was very warm today, I wore a sweater instead of my coat to work but didn't wear the sweater in the car driving home because it was too hot. So I wrapped the travel mug in the sweater and went into the house.

After talking to Bobby for a few minutes, I realized that I had left the travel mug outside in the car. Again. Thoroughly pissed at myself, I debated whether I wanted to go back outside for it. Well, in the meantime, I decided to hang up my sweater.

In the process of unfolding it, out rolled the travel mug, which I had forgotten that I hadn't forgotten.

Act III

Last night, it was raining. Bobby needs a new windshield wiper on his car, so when he went out to pickup hockey, he asked me if he could use my car instead. Of course I didn't mind.

I have a bitter loathing of certain small tasks in life and put off doing them as long as I can. I am a master of both delayed gratification and delayed mortification. Putting gas in the car is one thing I do not like to do. I don't know why; it's such a stupid thing. But, throughout the week, I watch the gas gauge and try to estimate how many times I can make it to work and back before I will need to fill up, and I'm really annoyed if I don't make it to my goal. I'm also really annoyed if I do, because I still have to put gas in the car.

I had figured out earlier in the week that I would need to fill up on Thursday morning. What I didn't figure was Bobby taking my car to hockey. No mind; I had enough to get to work. I would stop on the way home.

I even left work five minutes early to remind myself!

I work in Jessup, which is quite literally the location of half the state prisons in Maryland. So it's not the nicest place to get gas, what with recently released prisoners walking down to the B&W Parkway to hitch-hike all the time.

So I really didn't want to fill up in Jessup. Besides the fact that every pump in Jessup seems to have some weird malfunction. Either it won't let me lock the handle in place or it pumps about a gallon per minute, ensuring that I am standing outside watching the ex-cons strolling past for a good fifteen minutes or so.

I thought about stopping in Columbia, but Columbia is so expensive.

But I had enough to make it up the interstate to my exit, where there is a Citgo about a mile off my route home. I would stop there.

I should mention that I had to take a detour to return a library book. Bobby and I went out on Monday for me to buy ice cream ingredients and return the book, and I forgot to bring the book. I put it in my car the next morning so that I wouldn't forget again. Yesterday, it was raining and traffic was awful, so I didn't stop. It was a beautiful day today, though, so I figured I'd detour into Westminster too before my overdue fines force us to take out a second mortgage on the house.

Somewhere between deciding not to stop for gas in Columbia and getting off the interstate, I forgot to detour to the Citgo. I did, however, remember to go into Westminster, where there are lots of gas stations. However, I failed to remember to stop at one of them.

Library book returned, I headed home to Manchester. When the light at Hampstead-Mexico Road (no it does not go to "real" Mexico) turned green, I put my foot on the gas and ...

And ...

The car finally lurched reluctantly forward. At which point I realized, Oh shit, I forgot to stop for gas!

I do not know how an otherwise intelligent woman sets off for more than an hour-long drive home with the gas gauge nearly on E--and fully realizes this!--and then proceeds to forget, over the course of the next hour-and-a-half, all about that fact. I suppose the same way that I forgot about the cup I deliberately rolled into my sweater and forgot about the existence of gravity.

The next three miles or so going home were interesting. Luckily, Route 27 has a wide shoulder all along, so I knew that if the car suddenly conked out, I could easily coast out of the way of traffic. I tried coasting most of the way home, which worked half of the time, since I live in the foothills of the Appalachians. So it worked whenever I was rolling downhill. Uphill was another story. There is a Sheetz in town, and I briefly pondered passing the ol' homestead and filling up there, but all I could imagine was waiting at the light in town and the car conking out and being the cause of a backup all the way down 27. So I decided to try to make it home instead and use what Bobby had in the gas can for the lawnmower to make it to the Sheetz tomorrow morning.

Since we live just a little downhill from the highest point in Carroll County, there is no way to get to our house but up unless you start in an aircraft. It is really interesting driving up a steep hill with a nearly empty tank of gas. The car would jerk forward a few meters, lose power, jerk forward again, lose power ... I was convinced that I was going to break down at any moment, but I made all the way up the hill to home.

Now, the key tomorrow will be remembering that I need to get gas before driving down to Jessup because I will not be able to make that journey on E twice!
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Today, I spent a few hours at the library because we switched Internet providers this weekend and so were without Internet for a few hours. However, I had schoolwork to turn in and stuff to do on the SWG site, so I went and used Carroll County's wi-fi that my tax dollars pay for. When I emerged from the library some three hours later, it was snowing and the cars and pavements were lightly covered.

It was one of those strange snowfalls where it is snowing and sunny at the same time, so the snow on the main roads was melting pretty quickly, so it was a simple matter of using a little extra caution in case there were slick patches but, otherwise, an uneventful drive home. When I got home, Bobby was still tinkering with the Internet, so I did some reading in the living room. It kept snowing ... and snowing. When Bobby got the Internet running, the first thing he did was check the forecast. "Less than an inch," it said. (2.5 cm for you sensible, metric-using folks.) We had plans to drive to Hunt Valley (about a half-hour away) to get dinner at Cheeburger Cheeburger and go to a specialty grocery store to stock up on organic/vegetarian food, and since the forecast was unimpressive and my experiences driving home from the library had underscored the fact that the snowfall was really uneventful, then we set out around 6:30.

As soon as we passed out of Manchester township ... )
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Bobby and I had a really fun weekend. We went to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire on Saturday to see Albannach. On Sunday, we went to the Maryland Renaissance Festival to see the Medieaval Baebes. (And I got to meet [livejournal.com profile] fegie, who is now one of four online friends who can confirm that I really am a dorky twentysomething and not a dirty old man! ;)

Unfortunately, lots of successive early days and late nights left me tired, which is almost always an open invitation to a cold. And my immune system made good on its threats. Yesterday, around 1 PM, my tendency to sneeze a lot around this time of the year changed into sneezing incessantly (I might have sneezed 300 times yesterday if I sneezed once), and my throat felt like I'd swallowed a handful of killer bees. I remained in denial for, oh, roughly an hour before succumbing to the unfortunate realization that I was sick. I stayed at work till about 3:30, when my misery grew bad enough to threaten my ability to make the hour-long drive home.

I have to say that one of the good things about being married--happily married--is knowing that, when I got home, I could curl into a miserable ball and be taken care of. Bobby got me medicine straightaway and sent me to bed and made me a lovely (whiskey-spiked!) cup of honeyed tea for our nightly movie.

I stayed home today; Bobby was already scheduled off as well to wait for the Verizon Guy to fix our Internet, which--as of this morning--was still getting scary as soon as it got dark out. He tried something that will hopefully fix it but, well, we won't know till it gets dark out.

Because we had an unanticipated day off together, Bobby and I went to lunch and to the farm market. When I was a kid, I was not allowed to leave the house if I stayed home sick from school, and it still feels slightly rebellious to go out when I've stayed home sick from work.

Anyway, a lot of things are still up in the air right now. I have best intentions of posting the first of a two-part series for Haunted October this Friday, but I also have my final essay due for Modern Epic Fantasy, so it will depend on how well I do at finishing that. And there are emails/fannish obligations that haven't been getting my full attention because, well, I generally have fifteen minutes online at home before the Internet frizzles out, so I have to ration that time between numerous obligations. Last week, I reached the nadir of going to Panera Bread when I would have rather had Qdoba just because Panera has wi-fi, and I had a website to finish for an SCA event. Hopefully, the Verizon Guy fixed the problem with our Internet today, and life will get easier. In the next few weeks, I will be finished with all of my classes but one and keep reminding myself that I will then have plenty of time to spend on other tasks. However, I know myself and, as soon as that time is available, I will fill it with obligations and projects. It occurred to me the other day that I did the bulk of the work on the Consolidated Timelines for the First Age and then never finished the documentation of the project (read: the easy part).

It's really no wonder that I'm sick today.
dawn_felagund: (Default)
So here's an updatey-type thing ... )
dawn_felagund: (Default)
Tonight, I took care of something that I have been dreading for a while now. I organized my Gmail inbox. Oh, when I first got Gmail, I was a good little Gmail user. I tagged everything as soon as it came in and archived old conversations and actually kept up with what I had starred (and removed the stars once I took care of the email). But somewhere between the holidays and getting heavily involved with gaming/writing/SWG/SCA (and the myriad emails of each) and being busy at work, my usual time to take care of email, then I stopped taking care of my inbox. And it was starting to resemble a jungle. I'd star an email, and it would be pushed out of my inbox before I could answer it. Then, of course, I would forget about it, and it would never get answered. Yikes.

So the last hour has been spent tagging and bagging about 750 emails. A good 25% of them were LJ comments that just ended up getting deleted, so that made life easier.

So if you sent me an email, and you feel like I should have replied and I did not, then either 1) expect a reply in the next few days or 2) if you don't get said reply, email me again to remind me. I probably archived your email by accident. No offense is meant by this, but organizing 750+ emails pretty much guarantees that mistakes will be made.

I am an obsessively organized person (except for my desk which, at the moment, looks like a bomb went off), so I feel much better now that I have a single page of emails in my inbox and everything else is organized. Now will I be able to keep it that way? I hope!
dawn_felagund: (Default)
Just a few minutes ago, Bobby and I were sitting back to back in the study in total silence, "talking" back in forth over Gmail chat. We were RPing our characters for our gaming group's latest D&D game. I blame Patrick, our DM, for enticing us with extra experience points for developing the storyline of the game or doing background work on characters so that we have fallen to this new low. Since I am the unofficial story writer each week, then Bobby needed a way to get in on the extra XP, and this idea was born.

Before that, our worst transgression was the time I was "beta'ing" one of Bobby's essays for grad school; I was in the study and he was in the basement, both on our laptops, and I had a question, so we started chatting back and forth over Gmail before one of us thought to ask, "Wait, aren't we in the same house?" and Bobby came upstairs, pulled over a chair, and we actually spoke to each other as we worked side by side on his paper.

One final note: I am alive. I know that I have comments to answer on my last two posts; I started to answer some through a circumventor at work the other day, but it runs so damn slow that I lost patience. I have been working on a pretty major upcoming thing for SWG*, as well as getting ready to give my journal a pretty major overhaul**, so this hasn't left much free time for playing online. What have y'all been up to? I haven't been able to read my flist in weeks, so if you have news or any posts you think might interest me, please tell me about it! :)

* That should be announced tomorrow
** This should be announced some time in the next few weeks


Also, I still owe a post about the lake trip. Suffice to say, for now, that it was awesome. More details forthcoming. :)
dawn_felagund: (Default)
Grumble, Growl, Grouse )
dawn_felagund: (Default)
The Terminally Busy Life of Dawn Felagund )
dawn_felagund: (Default)
I woke up this morning feeling like I'd been dragged a mile behind a truck. It seems that the excitement of the past week has finally caught up with me, probably egged on by being sick the weekend prior.

For the past two days, driving to and from work, I've become very groggy near the end of my hour-and-fifteen-minute journey. This is really not a good thing. And I knew how worn-down I was, but I'm stupid and stubborn and hate to go to bed at nine o'clock when there is fun to be had online, books to read, husbands to cuddle, and dorky movies to watch.

I've fallen asleep while driving before, while I was still in university and I was--once again--stupid and stubborn and used to take nineteen credits a semester, plus working twenty hours a week, plus my internships and volunteer gigs. It was scary; I don't want to do it again.

So I reset my alarm this morning for seven, when Johnny the Boss gets to the office, then dragged myself out of bed to make a phonecall that I don't even remember now, then when back to bed and ended up sleeping (total) for almost eleven hours.

I feel much, much better now.

Now I could say that I learned my lesson and won't do it again, but I know that I will. I'm only ever truly happy when insanely busy with multiple projects going at once and nothing ever completely finished. It doesn't help that I'm a nightowl and now get up at 6 a.m. for work, which, believe me, is painful. I hope that once we transfer to the new office in Baltimore (possibly as soon as the end of the month), then I'll be able to sleep a bit later and recover my natural schedule somewhat. The only good thing is that four years of being bored at the WAU has taught me to write during the day. I used to only be able to write at night, the later the better.

Now see, already, I'm thinking, "As soon as I finish this journal entry, what can I get into ...?"

It's between starting a new Haunted October story and working a bit on the "light highlights" on wee!Boromir.

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