Sunday, July 22, 2007

How was San Diego?

I saw my brother last night and he asked how San Diego was, he's been waiting patiently for a new blog post about it. So I suppose I will update quickly.

San Diego was far better than expected. I genuinely had a fun time. I took away some great new ideas for my AP classroom from the content-area break-out session I was in each morning. We (the co-workers and me) created a great plan for the upcoming school year and 4-year plan for AVID in our school. I was tired the entire time because I stayed up talking way too late every night (note: wee small hours of the morning) to CF, my hotel roommate and another English teacher at my school. It is dangerous when you get two women together. It is more dangerous when they both like to read and talk about books. It is even more dangerous when they both teach. We had so much to talk about--teaching, great books, our families, history, politics, etc. I think out of everything, the conversation was the most enjoyable. The weather was much too nice. I don't exactly love humidity during the hottest part of the day, however. Overall it was much more enjoyable than the triple digits in my hometown (and you've all heard about the airconditionless apartment).

Also, my coworkers are all gourmands. I mean these people really, really love great food and great wine. And, as the district was footing the bill, we hit a couple of great restaurants over the course of the week. I had the most exquisitely good lasagna--I don't think it even had noodles in it. It was illegally decadent. Our first evening there we hit Old Town and I, more forgetful than ever, forgot my camera. You should have seen this stained glass window at one of the churches--stories high and absolutely beautiful! Three of us also hit La Jolla one night, just in time for the sunset. Luckily I remembered my camera. The photo above was taken of a patio that overlooks the ocean. But here's my favorite pic from the night:

And that was San Diego. :)

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Destination San Diego

Not that anyone is anxiously awaiting my newest blog posts, but, in case you are out there and you live for my updates, I will be out of town all of next week and internet usage probably won't happen. I am taking off to a conference/summer institute for school in San Diego. Great city...too bad I will be crammed in a conference room in some hotel from 8-4 every day. Actually, I am kind of excited about the conference itself. I love getting new information and ideas I can use in the classroom!

I will let you all know how it goes afterward. Hopefully nothing too crazy will happen with the co-workers. Ever notice how awkward it is to spend several days, 24 hours a day with one's co-workers!?! I have come to the conclusion that not only do we have no choice in our family members, we also have no choice in our co-workers. And some days I just have to look around me with both and of these things is not like the others! And it is definitely me! So here is to sucking it up and making it work and praying that sharing a hotel room isn't as uncomfortable as I fear. And one final note: at least you can tell your family how you really feel-- your boss...not so much!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Even Air Conditioning Has Its Pros and Cons

Ah...the sun rises earlier and sets later. The crickets chirp at night. In the distance the asphalt shimmers in the rising heat waves. All this points in one direction. That is right, it is summer here in my lovely desert state. And in a place where triple digits are expected, I am dying!

The new basement apartment Alice and I moved into in April came not only with cheaper rent and a summer infestation of spiders, earwigs, and centipedes, it came air conditioner free (don't worry about the landlady, though...she has a swamp cooler which keeps her nice and comfortable). And I am reminded of my youth in a certain house across from a certain fire station in which I spent every summer in a similar predicament. And I am reminded that, all in all, this royally sucks. I spent the entire day at home trying to get my laundry done and where else do I have to go? Big mistake! By eight pm my energy was so zapped I thought I wasn't feeling well. Now, I realize that there are worse things in this life. I am so incredibly happy that I live in far more comfortable conditions than my predecessors or residents of third-world, equatorial nations. But this really does bite!

However, as I cannot do much about my living conditions other than wait it out until mid-September, I thought I might look on the bright side. It is hot and that in and of itself is miserable and awful and not right in the United States in 2007. But, there are good things. Following is a list...

1. My laundry that doesn't dry in the piece of crap dryer included in the airconditionless apartment dries incredibly fast when hung to dry in this hot environment.

2. I never have to blow dry my hair anymore for the same reason...and my heavens it is too hot when I do!

3. I am getting good use out of my tank tops and "skank clothing not suitable for public display."

4. I conserve energy (I two ceiling fans, two oscillating fans, and one desk fan take up more or less energy than an air conditioning unit and a blow dryer?).

5. It is a great excuse for not cooking. The oven produces too much heat and I feel too hot to cook anyway...let's eat out!

6. It is always a great idea to go to the movies. I've seen several that I've wanted to, including an indy-flick, Once, which has an incredible soundtrack! I didn't even realize that the lead is also the lead singer of a favorite band of mine, The Frames!

7. I want to drink more than my daily requirement of water.

8. I really don't have much of an appetite lately. Except for popsicles and sherbet ice cream and anything else cold. I call it the "Heat Stroke Diet."

9. I could easily host a Bikram Yoga class in my living room.

10. I am single-handedly keeping a great company like Degree brand deodorant in business.

What about you...any pros I haven't thought of here? Any miserable, heat-filled experiences of your own? I'd love to hear about them.