Saturday, 22 November 2008

November (Part 2)

Joshua Radin: Brand New Day

Dearest November,

I’m sorry for my long silence. It’s been a very busy few weeks and today is the first day that I feel like I’ve actually had time to breathe.

Today is a beautiful day. A brand new day. The first sincere snow was a few days ago but by last night a lot of it had melted or been ploughed away and it was just cold. I went to bed last night at 12:30ish and I was up at 8:00 this morning with plans to go to the Farmers’ Market with Nathan. I looked out my window and couldn’t see beyond my double-panes of glass because there was snow piled two-thirds up my window. I called Nathan and aborted our morning plans because it was perfect crawl-back-into-bed weather; and I did crawl back into bed until 10:45. It snowed all morning and it’s snowing now and it’s beautiful.

Nathan and I had an ‘outing’ to the store this afternoon. I had to go to Sears to pick up a pair of proper winter boots (the pair I have are kind of pretty but not much use for actual snow) that I ordered online. We also have a potluck this evening and we needed to buy stuff to cook. It was an Outing because it’s so beautiful out. It’s clean and white and cold and gorgeous. I love the snow. I hate ice. I hate slush. I hate the stupid Sackville wind. But I love snow. We came home and had a celebratory toast with eggnog with sprinkles of nutmeg. All-in-all, it’s been a lovely day so far.

As I said, Nathan and I are going for a potluck at a friend’s house off-campus. Nathan and I are making scalloped potatoes together. We figured we’d get away with bringing something together. Plus, scalloped potatoes are fairly labour intensive and we can make a ton so it’ll be fine. From what I’ve gathered, a lot of people are going to be there and it’s going to be really nice. We have quite a few friends that live off-campus that we hardly ever see. It’s always nice to get together now and then and get away from the same group of res people that we see all the time. Not that there’s anything wrong with them – I love the people in Thornton. It’s just that it’s nice to get a change sometimes.

This last week was hellish. All of my big assignments were this week and obviously I left it all to the last minute. I had a paper due for Geography on Thursday morning and then another two papers due on Friday. I was in the computer lab till 1:15 am on Friday morning working on the paper for Animal Behaviour that was due in class at 8:30 on Friday. I had another paper for Religion due at 10:30. I wrote that last weekend which I turned out to be very grateful for. 3500 words for Animal Behaviour was enough as it was.

I have made plans for winter break. I’m going to be in the same house off-campus that I was last winter. Except this time I’ll be on my own which is a little bit shitty because it’ll be quite lonely … but it’s alright. I wonder if there’s something about growing up that involves a Christmas on one’s own. Maybe not. But either way, it’ll be my first Christmas on my own without family of some kind around. I guess I’ll curl up in bed and read lots and watch lots of movies. I think being alone will do me some good. Clear my head, sort out my thoughts. I’m a firm believer in the fact that solitude is essential. My mother is worried for my safety but this is Sackville – I’ll be fine. And really, two weeks is not a long time at all.

I can’t believe this term is almost over. It’s crazy how quickly it’s gone by. I wonder what I’ll feel after three years of being here. I wonder if I’ll look back and see a blur. Sometimes that’s what I think it’ll feel like. And maybe that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Maybe in the end we’ll look back at life and see units of time. Being a baby, Elementary School, Middle School, High School, gap year, Mount A … these are the units of my life so far. I don’t really remember much apart from a few isolated events and faces. A friend from a long time ago just put up pictures on Facebook of my friends and I in Middle School. It’s weird to see pictures from back then. I look different and I feel like it was a different lifetime. In many ways it was. I guess I’m not really the same person as the Me in the picture anymore. Lots has changed since then. Lots.

Well. I’m starting to ramble so I think it’s time to stop. I’m off to make scalloped potatoes. I’ll write again soon.

Sunday, 2 November 2008


Dearest November, you’re here so soon. We had snow around this time last year. In fact, the first snow was on November 4th last year; so there are a few days yet. But right now, we have crisp sunny days and a chill that seeps into one’s bones. But it's okay because Sackville is so beautiful in the winter. I watched the light change through the day today and the golden morning sun is just as beautiful as the long dark shadows of the evening. And even stepping out into the icy air makes me smile and take deep breaths of the clean cold.

I signed a lease for a cute little apartment downtown on Thursday. The five of us – Cate, Nathan, Noah, Rhiana and I – are really excited about next year. It’s still going to be six or seven months before we have to really do anything about it, but it also gives us time to get used to the idea of being room mates and living off campus. The apartment is really nice. It’s got lots of central open space which I think is good because we’ll have a place to congregate and we won’t get isolated in little corners of the house – which would have been the case in some of the other places we looked at. I think we’re all feeling really positive about it and I can’t wait till next year.

Friday night was Thalloween – Thornton’s Halloween house party. It was nice to actually have it on the 31st this year. I think it was a good night. I had more fun last year but that’s because all my friends were there. This year Nathan was saving the world with a fund-raiser for UNICEF at a bar downtown, Justin and Rhiana were on duty, and Noah was doing his presidential thing and being frantic and busy. I missed them. It would have been a blast if they’d been there. The plan is that next year the five of us are going to rock Thalloween as fabulous Thornton alumni. I can’t wait.

With November also comes the next round of midterms and papers to write. I actually have only one midterm but I have big writing assignments in my four other classes so it works out to the same thing. I spent all of today in Jennings doing some epic catching up. I did really well on all my midterms but as a result, I got rather behind in my reading. I got a lot done today. I’m proud of myself. I had a friend tell me that I had to make sure I did something for myself today, so here I am. I’ve been looking forward to writing all day.

We turned our clocks back an hour today. The extra hour has been a wonderful thing. I went to sleep at 1:00 last night but it was actually 12:00 and I slept till 8:00 and still got plenty of sleep. And even though now it’s dark a whole hour earlier, it makes the day seem like it’s taking longer to go by. I left Jennings at 6:00 and it felt distinctly later and it’s always a pleasant surprise to find that I have a whole hour extra. I’ve been a bit put off by the early dark but I’ll get used to it. It’s only the first day, after all. And I’d really much rather have more hours of light earlier in the day than later. I hate waking up in darkness.

It’s going to be a busy week. I have a lot to do that I want to get done before next weekend which I plan to dedicate wholly to studying for Physics. Yay.

Oh. And next Friday a group called The Tom Fun Orchestra (based out of the Maritimes … not sure exactly where, Nova Scotia, I think) is coming through town so we’re going to all do a joint ‘We’re All Twenty Now’ birthday thing. We all had pretty crappy 20th birthdays since Nathan’s birthday was last Wednesday and he had a SAC meeting, Rhiana’s is this week and she’s crazy busy, Noah had his during the summer when he was all alone, and I had mine in April during exams. So we’re going to party and have a great time. This coming weekend is also a long weekend because it’s Remembrance Day on Tuesday and so we get Monday off too as a ‘study day’. So I’m excited. This week will be slightly painful, but Friday will be fun. And I think I might take some of Saturday off (maybe to recover from Friday) and I’ll study the rest of the weekend.

And I think I’m going to stop for now. Oh, by the way, the blogging team has a lot of new people (only myself and another person carried over from last year) so if you are a prospective Mt A student looking for different perspectives, you should check out the new bloggers.

Have a happy week, everyone …

I think this might have been my favourite song this week: ‘Don’t Look Away’ by Joshua Radin … a lot inspired by a conversation I had with a friend on Thursday afternoon. (So really it was my favourite song for the end of the week). And the whole point of it is: use your eyes when you speak and when you smile. They can often say much more than your words ever could.