After a whirlwind week of crazy work happenings, I've managed to escape Waterloo for a few scant days to London. Things are pretty subdued this year, as the whole family couldn't make it home to my parents' this year.
Nevertheless, I still managed to stress out a fair bit this year. Christmas involves doing all sorts of things that involve subjecting yourself to harrowing shopping experiences. I worry about shopping for the perfect gift a little too much, I'm sure. This year, in addition, I was totally behind. Most of you have noticed by now that you did not get a Christmas card from me. I barely managed to get some gifts for some of my immediate family. For my parents of all people, I haven't bought anything.
Mostly, I think it's that I haven't really talked with any of my family for any kind of extended period of time, that I really don't know what would be a good gift anymore. Not that when I was younger I did any better. But for ecogrrl and clvrmnky, managed to get them what I think are excellent gifts.
This whole thing with the on-line wish lists make it somewhat easier. It feels a bit like a cop-out, but at the same time, it's stress free shopping. Amazon even makes it ridiculously easy, allowing you to have them gift wrap, and include a little card/note and send right to the recipient.
I spent all of yesterday afternoon with my one sister, and her boyfriend, and in that time, I managed to come up with at least one good idea for a gift, assuming they don't get it for themselves between now and next year. And assuming I don't forget what it is. Time will tell.
I mentioned this briefly here, on my LiveJournal blog, but let me reiterate: Bacon is a very, very good thing. I made myself a yummy yummy sandwich with bacon from Rowe Farm Meats (the website doesn't quite exist yet, but feel free to click on the link anyway) as well as some disappointing bread from Zehr's/Valu Mart/Loblaws/whatever, some organic lettuce I bought from my local health food store, and ricotta cheese as a spread.
The ricotta cheese serves as a really good mild cheese in place of alternatives. The only other cheeses I have at the moment are Parmesan, both pre-grated and in a block, those little Baby Bel cheeses (la vache qui rit!) and four year old cheddar, which is a bit strong and would compete with the flavour of the bacon. Also, the ricotta eliminates the need for another spread, none of which seemed very appealing to me at the moment.
The bread, is mostly a disappointment because it looks so bloody impressive. It's a sort of many-grain, whole wheat, blah blah blah kind of bread, that had I bought at a real bakery, I would be rolling around my kitchen floor having mini-orgasms from sheer bready goodness. Nevertheless, it's barely more than your average store bought, pre-sliced variety. Oh well. It's still a good sandwich, dammit.
Good enough, at the very least to have my lazy orange monstrosity of a cat intently focused on my every move as I eat. He's leaning off the monitor in a fashion that suggests if he could just lean forward one more inch, he could reach the priceless artifact that had eluded kitty archaeologists for centuries. Fame, fortune, and that attractive Austrian kitty archaeologist would all be his.
Oh, and the sandwich would also be his, I guess.
Here we are at the end of the school term; the end of classes at least. I've already been working here for almost four months now. Crazy.
In a vain attempt to try and stay on top of things, I caved in and purchased (yet another) an organiser. This time, a Palm Zire 72. It works with Macs, and Linux, though I haven't satisfactorily been able to get it to work with either. Linux will connect, but not sync. On the mac, it will sync, but only with itself. I'm at the point now, where I have four calendaring systems that don't talk with any of the others.
There are a few options. There's an app out there called the Missing Sync which is supposed to work wonders with the Mac built-in applications. With Linux, it's just a matter of persistence. Painful head bashing persistence. It's the last one that's got me totally stumped.
The University (meaning IST, the campus wide IT group) has settled on a platform that talks to nothing and no one: Oracle Calendar. I have some bizarre proprietary binary files sitting in a calendar directory on the server somewheres that is relatively useless to me, unless there's a handy dandy CPAN module that can at least let me jury rig something together.
Also, I'm trying to set up a local LDAP server for addresses, since no one else seems to have already done it. Maybe I'm just not looking in the right place.
Here's hoping I can use my Zire for more than just playing games. (Though it does that admirably.)
The first day of December isn't really all that special. Not, at least, in and of itself. It's a lot like the last day of November. Or for that matter the second day of December.
There are a large number of people who read this blog though, that days near today is something reasonably special. Most of those, it's even a milestone of sorts as they celebrate their 100000th binary birthday. Those of them with a web presence, whether it's their 25th or not, can be found here. Well, some of them anyway. If you know any of these people, maybe you could wish them a happy birthday or something.
That being said, this particular first of December began with giant fluffy flakes of snow drifting lazily to the ground. It was very pretty falling outside my window as I got ready for my day, and kept one of my cats reasonably occupied.
Leaving the house though, was another matter. In the scant few hours for me to have a shower, feed kitties, wolf down my own breakfast, etc., the weather had changed from picturesque to mean and vindictive. While not particularly cold, temperature wise, the wind was unrelentingly blowing in my face the whole walk to school, causing me to bundle up as best I could. My face, largely protected by glasses, a hood, and the collar of my coat was the worst off.
On the plus side though, I got the ball rolling for taking courses again, and went down to the registrar's office today to apply for (re-)admission into school. We'll see how that goes, but I am quite please with the thought of taking classes again.