Monday, September 25, 2006
In the space of 2 hours I got told, that with the exception of our skin color, my husband and I look alike and then by someone else, that I look like Kirsten Dunst. I prefer Kirsten Dunst.... no offence to my dashingly handsome husband, but I'm not that keen on resembling a soon-to-be 32 year old man. Call me crazy.
I am leaving the island on Wednesday so probably won't be posting until I'm back in a jet-lagged, freezing cold, Canadian haze.
Happy birthday to my husband J on Wednesday, the 27th of September.
Sunday, September 24, 2006
I'm feeling a little hazy at the moment due to excessive partying and not enough sleep, so I'll have to make this short. J's party was a lot of fun. The big box in his lap is a printer that our friends gave him. Very nice gift. We were both a little shocked. Those same friends gave me a beautiful sicilian cookbook as a "going away" present, even though I am only going to be gone for a month and a half. Sometimes I am amazed at the generosity of others.
The party was potluck and we had quite a feast. Veal meatballs, cheese ball, bruschetta, rice, tiramisu, ice cream cake and sangria. Yum. I also let J drink his favourite, "Capn and coke," so by the end of the night he was a bit googely. It was funny.
Last night was the ball. It was at a great restaurant up on a hill overlooking the sicilian hills. The food was great and we even did some dancing after dinner. I sat with J's command where the big joke is that my "75 pound frame" manages somehow to beat him up. This is all because he went in to work last week with a cast on his finger and no one believed that it had gotten jammed in a football practice. Apparently spousal abuse is much funnier than a lack of sportive talent.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
Those wacky Italians strike again.
Tonight we're going to try and find the alleged mexican restaurant in Catania. Tomorrow night we're having a party for J's birthday. Saturday is the ball, and I plan to be the belle. Party, party, party.
I am going back to Canada on Wednesday. My sponsorship is done so now all I have to do is route it throught the Italian consulate in order to get my visa. I have approximately one billion things to take care of and close out while I'm there in addition to attending and possibly playing at the hungarian festival so the 6 weeks (hopefully no longer) should fly by. I look forward to seeing all of my buddies again!
Monday, September 18, 2006
The ceremony was lovely. J is now a chief. Doesn't he look handsome in his new uniform?
We did nothing this weekend. It was bliss. J goes on leave this afternoon so we'll probably do a whole lot of nothing and a whole lot of relaxing this week. I can't wait.
I discovered a mexican restaurant with my friend Mike up in Nicolosi last week. It was so nice to see a menu without the words pasta and pizza. I think J and I will have to return this week so he too can indulge in some tasty sangria and tortillas.
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
I'm at war with my 8 year old neighbour at the moment. I am trying to listen to Haydn cello concertos in order to calm my nerves, while she is blasting the Black Eyed Peas in her front yard. Don't get me wrong, I love the B.E.P., but if I were in the mood, like I was yesterday, to listen to them, I would put them on the CD player, IN THE HOUSE. And it seems that Maria, or whatever her name is, only has a CD with 1 song...... "Don't Phunk With My Heart."
To make matters worse, I only have my Bylsma recording with me. My burned Isserlis copy is back in Canada. Bylsma is good, but Isserlis is unbelievable. Why do I have only a burned copy of Isserlis? Well you'll just have to ask Shac/Nancy about that. I would normally never burn a classical CD because I know the artists and labels make very little money, but I did own it at one time, and still own the case. I believe the last I heard the CD is floating around Puget Sound somewhere.
Oh ya, and to make matters even worse, I had a horrible experience at the tailor shop today. I will save that story for another day when my rage has subsided to a point where I can see straight enough to type coherently. It has been a lovely day.
Monday, September 11, 2006
Under siege I tell you. Why? Because 9 times out of 10, there isn't a scrap of toilet tissue to be found in any public bathroom. I now have to carry it with me at all times if I'm going anywhere that's not the base.
For a long time I thought that this absence was merely another representation of the work ethic I've observed in the public, well, and for that matter, private, sector. I thought it was an apathetic oversight.
I was told yesterday however, that it's because toilet tissue is soooooooooo expensive in Italian stores. So expensive that people feel compelled to steal it from public bathrooms. For a moment I accepted this because I've heard that stealing is a big problem in this country (though luckily I have not yet been a victim.... knock, knock) but then I realized that these people that find it to be such a hardship to scrape up a few euro for toilet tissue, are most likely the same people I see strutting around in D&G, toting Coach, and racing around in BMW. I guess it's all about priorities. I, for one, would much rather have unlimited toilet tissue in my house than a shiny beamer parked in my driveway. But that's just me.
Friday, September 08, 2006
"Brush" with Death
Anyone that has known me for more than a month knows that I'm obsessed with haircuts. No matter how capable the stylist, no matter how relaxing the environment, sitting in that chair with my number one obsession in the hands of someone else makes me a near basket case. I know exactly why I react this way..... I figured out recently precisely which childhood incidents led to this neurosis, but I'll save that psychobabble for another, more pretentious, time. And unfortunately this is not one of those realizations that has led to a cure. Knowing has not satiated the obsession.
Also unforunately, because of my short style, I have to go every 45 days or so. I have a hard enough time getting english speakers to understand and execute what I want so you can imagine my terror at the thought of going to an Italian salon. Luckily, there is a "beauty salon" on base where the stylists are required to speak english. Sort of.
At the end of July I randomly walked in one day and put my style life in the hands of Giovanni. He assured me that he knew exactly what I was talking about and proceeded to distract me with stories of living in Malta as he chopped and fluffed for about a half an hour. Apparently he took "so long" because it was my first time there, but he could actually do that hairstyle in about "5 minutes." Listen guy, there are only two stylists on God's green earth that have given me superb and stunning haircuts, and they both took 2 hours. So 5 minutes?!? I suggest you stop talking.
Anyway, they only charge 14 dollars for a haircut so I can't really complain. And the result wasn't bad, though not short enough because I just had to go back this week. I got Giovanni again. But this time was different. He seemed distracted, no more stories of Malta, just unconvincing nods and assurances that he knew what I was talking about. So I let him cut my hair... still not sure that he really understood what I wanted. Finally after about 7 minutes he was "finished." He showed me the back and I had a vision of what it would look like dry and all I saw was a mullet. Always the polite Canadian I said diplomatically, "Um, I think the back needs to be shorter." He responds, "no!" My heart stopped. I gasped. I couldn't believe what I had just heard.
Once my soul had returned to my body from the white light, still polite, I started to convince him that yes, indeed I really did want it cut shorter... I needed it to be shorter. Can you believe it? I had to convince my hairdresser to cut my hair the way I wanted it. Naturally I was incensed. Luckily he eventually believed me and did exactly what I wanted. I took the picture so that when I no doubt will have no choice but to go back to him in the next few years, I have proof that what I want is actually not a complete travesty, and that amazingly I'm not an idiot, and that I know what I want.
I got up to go to the base this morning so I could do some running and take in a step class like I did on Wednesday but unfortunately wasn't feeling up to it. For the past few weeks, I have been spending 2-3 hours at the gym every few days and I think my body needs a bit of a rest. So today I am at home being lazy. I will return to my alter ego, Lieutenant Commander "Giv'r" on Sunday.
Thursday, September 07, 2006
Sometimes Different is Good..... But Not Always
My family used to go to McDonald's a lot so I blame them for the fact that I still love that plastic, processed, and oh so yummy taste of their burgers and fries. Seeing as how I like to maintain a girlish figure however, I discovered in adulthood that these two loves don't exactly go hand in hand. So I made a self-pact with myself a couple of years ago to only indulge once a year. Well, I just had my yearly check-in..... mostly because I wanted to see if it really did taste the same around the world. (N.B. I actually went a year and a half without it this time!)
It doesn't. People say that Americans eat the worst food. But imagine the one thing that doesn't need to be added to salty fries and salty fake burgers. Salt. Italians add salt to their burgers (the buns are absolutely caked in extra salt granules) and the fries seemed like they were salted before they hit the deep-fryer, salted again once removed and then a few more times just for good measure. Yuck. For the first time in my life and I didn't leave my tray and wrappers clean.
And forget about customer service. Dude was not only apathetic, but couldn't find the button for McRoyal with cheese to save his life.
Stay tuned for "....Not Always" part II for the chilling tale of my "brush" with death......
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
I am plagued by very vivid, and usually disturbing, dreams on a nightly basis. Most of my good friends have suffered long descriptions the next day, now it's your turn! This dream I had the other day isn't particularly weird, but rather, a bit funny.
For some reason I was picking up our mail at J's work. I'm pretty sure in real life I'm not allowed to do this but again, very little in this dream is real. There was a package for me.... a box about the size of a cigar box. I looked at the address and it didn't resemble our mailing address one bit so I thought, "hmm, this isn't for us, I wonder how the mailman could have possibly thought it was." But then I looked at the return address and noticed that it was from a somewhat infamous ex-boyfriend. Oh dear, I thought.
As I was in a rush (probably trying to get out of J's building before being detected), I only briefly sifted through the contents. A couple of shampoos, some soap, a pound of bacon, some mozzarella balls and 400$! "Aw, that's so nice," I thought, "he sent us a nicey wedding present..... and bacon! B loves her bacon!"
When I got home, however, I got a chance to think more carefully about the contents. Hmm, bacon and cheese sent in a stuffy box. A box that then spent days in the confused bowels of a cargo plane. I'm thinking eating these "delicacies" may kill me. Then I looked at the shampoo bottles and noticed that they were "Life" brand from a popular Canadian drugstore and they were caked with shower water and approximately half-full. I was tempted to condemn him as being cheap and speculating that he only sent me these things because he was cleaning out his apartment, but then I remembered the cashish so I decided to reserve judgement. Until, that is, I opened a small envelope beside the cash. In the envelope were instructions for where the money was to go. Turns out ol' boy didn't have time to tie up some loose ends and sent me money to pay his bills, employees, etc...... So in the end, this was no wedding present. And very typical.
Back to reality. I got a perfect dress for the ball yesterday (only small tucks to the shoulders are still needed). It was a bit pricey, but since I've been pretty controlled this summer, I decided to splurge. I think it's very Carrie Bradshaw. Luckily I found cute shoes for only 10 Euro. I can't wait to put it all together and throw my nose in the air. Kidding.
Less than two weeks till I get my husband back. Though I can't complain about the weekend. We spent the whole day together yesterday and it was wonderful.