January 2011 archive

Literary Soup

I take English Lit 12 through SIDES, our local distance education school. It is a very exciting course…I had been looking forward to taking Lit 12 at GNS with one of my favorite teachers since grade 9. He read for us passages from Chaucers’ “Canterbury Tales” in the traditional old English, and “Beowulf” in the Anglo-Saxon tongue. I was inspired and enthralled that something someone hundreds of years ago had spoken and written had survived, and that I could still connect to the characters, and laugh at the follies of the pilgrimages and their fascinating glimpse of 14th century life, and cry on the beach as Beowulf lay, dying, but triumphant against his last fire-breathing foe. I had been hooked on reading ever since I got past the first big hurdle of actually learning to read. I was against the idea, determined to never read, but instead work at a gas station or McDonalds. Times have changed.

I am currently working my way through the “Canterbury Tales”, which I spent the greater part of today working on. I have a wonderful audio-book version of the poem, which saves me the headache of wading through the soup of old-English’s abundance of odd vowels and consonants, whose sound has evolved over the years.
To complete a ‘literary-ily’ perfect day, I scored big points with the rare word qiviut, coming to us from the Inuktitut word ᕿᕕᐅᖅ. I feel like such a fibre nerd. I am slowly picking up drops of energy, but am trying to rest up for whatever excitements of life await me this week!

Qiviut: the wool of the musk-ox

Friends of the Library

I think I will be reading from today til the end of the world in 2012.

We went to the “Friend of the Library Book Sale” today, the first time I have been well enough to leave the house for a few days. We arrived to sort through the remaining books of the sale, during the last 30 minutes. Basically, you pay $5.00 for as many books as you can carry, and we managed 21 books. That’s an average of something like $.24 a book. Crazy, right? We got some wonderful old books, including a book of Spanish American poetry from the 30’s (bilingual), a book on war tactics, botany of the Pacific Northwest, history of print making through the middle ages, “Strange Fruit” (the history of the Billie Holiday song), 2666 by Robert Bolaño and many others. It is an excellent start to my own library…and these already have authentic bar codes and decimal numbers!

The Lyme-Flu

Sweating is absolutely disgusting. I feel so utterly drained, dehydrated and sticky. Ever fiber of me that is still connected with my drugged brain feels taut, tense and oddly like they have been roughly rubbed and stretched the wrong way, and the sinews broken and hastily knotted back together. I have spent the day alternatively sweating and cooling. The infuriating thing is I actually have an ‘under’ temperature of 98 F (36.6 C), which is actually higher than it usually is, but still .8 F below normal. I did have the other kind of fever earlier on in the day, but it seems to be all over now.

I started my afternoon feeling horrible. The terrible Lyme-related suffering creeps up on me very slowly, so that between the minutes I can feel myself slowly sliding into the anguish, before it engulfs me like boiling water. My body began to shake violently, and it was like I had been plunged into bitterly glacial water. After the shaking wound to a halt, I just rested for the day. My clothes are damp with sweat and I feel like I have been shaken upside down for awhile, the blood pounding in my temples. The feeling is like when I see blood, the feeling of going into shock, or the sensation of distance after you have lost a lot of blood. I need to rest now.


For sanity’s sake, I cannot consider the changing year of our Gregorian calendar of much importance. If I pause to contemplate where two-and-a-half years of my life have disappeared to, I would mentally skid to a very abrupt, and painful halt. I’d rather make a big deal of New Years when I can have my champagne (not Pellegrino) and drink it too.

The sun sets on the ferry’s in the downtown inner harbor (Parliament Building to far Left)

All in all, the first day of the second decade of the second millennium went exceptionally well. People say that the way you spend the first days of the new year reflect on how the new year will be. That is absolutely ridiculous…every day should be lived as though it is the day, wonderful and fresh and free of mistakes in the morning, yet today’s actions will be tomorrows memories and consequences.

One of my goods friends from GNS, Roy, is staying with us, which is really nice. It is strange to think of all my friends living so far away, but wonderful to have them closer, even if its only for a few weeks. It was a beautiful day, where the clouds are streaked across the sky, the sun peaking between the slits in the sky. Pristine, and refreshingly cold. I was bundled up in true Canadian spirit.

War memorial at dusk

It was nice to just be downtown. I used to explore all over our wonderful capital frequently; admiring the views, meeting friends, checking out places, and just breathing in the crisp air. The city core has a wonderful feel. If you head away from the water, the amount of tourists who wander there become less and less, and you can discover the ‘real’ city. A major part of our industry is tourism, so there is a nice, marked up district, where there is an abundance of maple-leaf emblazoned items for sale, maple syrup, and mini native totem poles.
We ended up for a snack a small place in China town (fondly known as ‘China Block’, and a much more accurate name).  Good food!
Another day in beautiful BC.

Festive trees in Bastion Square

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