Saturday, December 24, 2005

Christmas

Suddenly it is Christmas Day and it doesn't feel anything like it's the festive season?! I was surprised when I got home just how undecorated Christchurch is. The silly thing is that nothing is any different to any other year, it's just that I really enjoyed all the snow and the fairy lights and the winter woolly garb filling the houses and streets in Cincinnati. :-)

It is kind of surreal splitting the festive season between two countries this year! It makes for some variety, that's for sure!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Fly up high

Well, I've survived all my going away parties (sob sob) so I guess I have to hop on the plane now...

Even though I will be in New Zealand instead of Cincinnati, I figure I may as well keep the blog going since all my friends in Cincinnati now need something to check in on! Hehehe. They want to see pictures of this beautiful land from the Lord of the Rings. :-)

So, I will update once again when I have made it back onto the ground. :-)

Friday, December 16, 2005

Yearly Revision

I'm finally done with the majority of my year's papers now (thank GOD!!!) and just five more days left in the States before I begin my trek back to New Zealand.

Even just typing that makes me feel dizzy. Call me crazy, but I totally love it here and I don't actually want to leave ... it's just that small pesky issue of an expired visa and the lack of a green card. Pfft.

Anyway ... I can't even begin to sum up what this year has been like for me. Maybe that's because it is 2.30 in the morning as I type this, haha. But seriously, how do I describe what I've gone through this year??? Impossible.

I'm almost crying as I type. It is very hard to spend a year day-in and day-out in a city and NOT make some incredibly super friends, experience changes in your outlook on things, and just generally be thrilled at having SURVIVED THE CRAZY RIDE!!!

I have seen some true extremes in poverty and riches here. Cincinnati is a city that almost haunts me. Having spent a year working downtown at the Courthouse, it is hard to forget the faces of the prisoners tapping at the doors of their cell as you walk past. I leave work with mixed feelings most days. Both a sense of justice and futility. Well, more often futility. It is a fine line between the two sometimes...

I have a much stronger sense now of the advocacy work I want to pursue though. So, thank you Courthouse, hehehe.

And as for the Law School?? Well, that was a ride in itself. Nothing like Law School in New Zealand, that's for sure. I would never consider any of my professors at home my "friends", but here? Yes. I won't name any names, hehe, but I actually consider a couple of them to be my friend. One of them will be in NZ next May and we have organised the havoc we are going to wreak on the city already when we "hang out", hahahahaha!

I now have a million goodbye parties to attend, as well as a trip to Canada to fit in. Must remember my camera. :-)

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Remember the pretty ponds??

Remember a few weeks ago when I photographed the ponds near my house, and everything was green and lush and beautiful?? Well, here are the same ponds today! Hard to believe it is the same spot...

Personally, I still think that are rather beautiful ... just very different. :-)

Saturday, December 10, 2005

Now for the words I DIDN'T want to see...



Ok. So my suspicions last evening were dead on. Literally.

My beloved laptop, that has accompanied me to all corners of the world as well as all corners of the University of Cincinnati Law School ... has

d-i-e-d.

It didn't make it through the final 11 days like I had hoped. Bugger.

So, today? I went shopping. :-D At least laptops are criminally cheap in this country.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Aaaaaargh! Nooooooooo!

My laptop is making some awfully bad groany noises ... I truly think it is about to die. It also keeps "dumping memory" on me, and the harddrive really does sound like it is housing a swarm of bees right now.

Problem is, it has to survive at least another 11 days. The last 11 days of this semester, during which ALL my final papers are due and I will be burning the candle at both ends typing for hours.

I can see this turning into something potentially very, very nasty...

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Big fat flakes and empty streets...

You know, I couldn't ask for better study weather, hahaha. I've always had difficulty with the NZ end of year exams, wanting to hang out in the sun instead of study...

Well, no worries about THAT right now....

Monday, December 05, 2005

Marooned by ice :-(

I got trapped in my flat yesterday. Well, not entirely, but pretty much...

I tried to walk out onto the landing and down the steps. It only took about half a second to stop myself from having a very nasty accident worthy of a lawsuit, hahaha. (No "Accident Compensation Corporation" here. Slip and fall equals lawsuit. :-)

Anyway, there are people who roam the streets around these parts, de-icing anything and everything. It is their job. It is what they do.

Except, they seem to have forgotton MY place this weekend. Ugh. I can't even begin to describe the level of icicle overhang I looked at ... from my front door ... and the very first step resulted in a slip. So I was not exactly prepared to risk the stairwell!

But I had to take the rubbish out. It was overflowing beyond the realms of reasonable, so my ONLY option was to pour tonnes of hot water all down the landing and the stairs, gingerly descend grasping the (slippery and frozen) handrail, creep to the rubbish bin, then hurtle my way back upstairs as soon as possible in order to make it indoors before the hot water solidified again!

Trapping myself outside in sub-zero temperatures without anymore access to hot water? That would have been V-E-R-Y unfortunate, I say....