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kay why

I’m about 85% moved in! I’m saying this with a lot more gusto than I’m actually feeling because, as luck would have it, I managed to get sick over the weekend (sigh). What a great way to start my rotations, right? :'( I actually had to stop 1/3 of the way into my drive to park in a hospital lot, where I promptly passed out for 2 hours (…).

The weekend was pretty darn awesome though–aside from chilling with the cats, I got to go hang out with the dogs at the shelter for the first time in ages, and took a bunch of them out for runs/walks/jogs. I also gave Raisin and Char Char a rather thorough grooming session, because hot and humid summers are definitely not their best friend.

Raisin’s one of my favorites. :D Just look at that face!!!

Sheba was also pretty thrilled to see me. <3

I also stopped by the local coffee shop to give me spare key to my friend. In so doing, I happened upon a ginormous dandelion. o_o Excuse my short + stumpy fingers. I just wanted you to have a comparison for how big it was.

Church meal! <3

After church, I went over to a friend’s neighbor’s place to go swimming before heading over to his house for a cookout/BBQ. (He’s heading to CA to start med school.) We went out to the corn fields and picked a whole ton to bring back to shuck/cook up. I unfortunately forgot to take pictures of all the awesome food that was there, but I did get a couple shots of the pool noodle wars!

It’s adorable how tiny Mia is in comparison to her pool noodle. :P

My friend happens to grow a whole ton of different veggies/herbs to sell, so at around midnight, he handed me a plastic bag and asked if I wanted to go on a “midnight raid.”

F: What do you mean?
A: We’re going to the Garden of Eden! You can take whatever you want!
(Sorry if blaspheming. It was all in good fun.)

Hence, how I ended up with eggplant, some kind of super-spicy pepper (forgot what they called it :[ ), tomatoes, beets, and huge bunches of fresh basil, Thai basil + cilantro. I’ve never prepared beets before, but…what better time to start, right? :O

Here’s some of it! :D

Despite my being sick and somewhat starved-out state (forgot to keep food/water next to me in the car; poor life choices :[ ), I managed to drag everything up to the third floor without any help. (I tend to dislike asking for help if I know I’m capable of doing it on my own.) Everything has been put away and I now have a mattress to sleep on! :D

;_;

double you vee

I couldn’t help sharing this awesome wrapping paper. :O Florence is awesome. Yes, the orange squares are post-it notes. The white part talks about how love is the greatest happiness. heh heh heh.

Shortly before I left, I met up with a friend in Emeryville and we took a longgggass walk on the waterfront. (We’d never been there before, and we [or I. I talk a lot.] had a lot to say. :O ) This is probably the last sunset on a beach that I’ll be seeing for at least a year, because I am now landlocked, my friends! :'( Good thing it was pretty!

I was originally supposed to get to WV on Thursday, but our connecting flight ditched us in Houston, so we ended up staying the night in Texas. My mom apparently has friends all over the planet though, so he sent his daughter to pick us up while he stayed at home and cooked up an awesome dinner. (My dad was especially joyous about this because he got to play ping pong. :o ) Anyway, we ended up getting to my actual apartment on Friday, and we even managed to do it without the airline losing our luggage again. ;)

(This sign was in the LWB airport. It is tiny and I really wish I could fly into that airport instead of Charleston or Roanoke, but >$1000 and 17 hours is completely not worth it. :[ )

I’m kinda in love with my apartment, so much so that I don’t want to move out, even though I seriously just moved in. >_> It costs less than the room I had back in 6F (wish they were here with me… ;_; ). I have two bedrooms, a gigantic kitchen, a living room, a bathroom, along with my own deck and balcony. (It also came furnished. :) The bed was already fitted with sheets, and the guy who used to live there left me with 15 textbooks and a shelf full of notes. I also have a billion extra blankets, so I shouldn’t have to worry about being cold in the winter (hopefully). :o My landlord even bought me a desk for the second bedroom, which I’m planning to use as my study. (I’m thinking of getting a pole for the living room since there’s the most space there…) I have 2 fellow students & my landlord’s grandson as my neighbors. :]

Here’s my living room! :]

My backyard (shared with 3 others, but still. holy crud.).

My balcony! :] I didn’t put in pictures of my rooms/bathroom/kitchen because I can’t take very good pictures of em’. :/ Weird angling.

Speaking of neighbors, I met one of them in person today. (I say this because he emailed me about a month ago because he found out I was gonna be one of his neighbors and wanted to welcome me in advance to WV, so we were emailing back and forth.) He got me a housewarming present from his hometown! ;_; [I feel really bad because I basically don’t have any idea what to get him. :[[ ] We joked about Morse-coding through my floor/his ceiling if we need anything. :O

We managed to finish cleaning and unpacking by the first night (although “morning” would be a better way to put it… we got there at 9 p.m. and finished at 4 a.m.). On Saturday, we drove to Virginia to pick up my car, which I’ve decided is a girl and have thus named her Cordelia (thanks, Joanne! :D ), since she’s an Accord. Since there was fortunately a Costco in the same town, we stocked up on a whole bunch of food. It’s my hope that I won’t need to buy food other than fresh fruit/veggies for the next year.

I had to drive Cordelia at <50 mph from Virginia back to WV because my dad didn’t have a GPS and the rental car he was driving couldn’t go past 45 mph uphill. :'( Twas an ultimate test of patience, but Speedracer taught me a lot on that. Convincing my mom to stop telling me to start braking from 50 feet away was a different story though. ;_;

Meet Cordelia! <3 <3 <3

I took my parents on a mini tour through the campus today. (It wasn’t much of one though since we didn’t go into any of the buildings and I was speaking through memories from back in October, but still, it’s the thought that counts.) I think they’re a whole lot more at ease because everyone’s been so friendly and welcoming. :D We ate at one of the two Chinese restaurants in town today and the owners came out to talk to us. One of em’ told me that if I ever wanted a Chinese dish of some kind, I could just let her know and she’d cook it up for me. (It’s usually a buffet. :O ) She also said that if I get lonely living by myself out here on my eternal camping trip (it’s what it feels like :P ), I should feel free to move into one of her places.

And the same goes for the students! Needless to say, I believe that one of the traits they screened for in their students = how nice they were. o_o I’m slightly scared of what’s going to happen to me when I step back into the real world, but let’s take this one step at a time, shall we? Bring on that culture shock!

living quarters

I am hesitant to post a picture of my room for the time being because it looks extremely cluttered. This is largely due to the ginormous box sitting by my door. I have two beds in here (one’s in the box and I’m lying on the other one).

In short, walmart.com has been the bane of my existence in terms of furniture. Almost every piece of furniture I’ve gotten has been somewhat of a nightmare, but I will not dwell on it, because most of it is [finally] done with.

Long story short, walmart.com sucks and I really love Target, and not only because I found cans of Emerald Cocoa Roasted Almonds there on sale! :D!

This is where I currently live!

It’s a 4-bed/1-bath house, so we’re all under agreement to do makeup and hair in our own rooms. Fortunately, I don’t know how to do makeup and “doing my hair” usually goes as far as putting it in a ponytail or brushing it, so I’m good to go. There’s usually lawn furniture, but I took it all inside because we were preparing for Hurricane Irene at the time.

See? (Yes, those are unfortunately our garbage/recycling cans behind the chair.)

I’m currently living with 2 dietetic interns (one soon-to-be RD) and 1 PhD student. We’ve been getting along great because we all love food and understand each other’s freakishly busy schedules.

On long days, this is a typical conversational exchange.
F: (collapsed in a chair after making dinner) I’m too tired to chew.
H: (sitting on the stairs waiting for her food to cook) I feel you.
M: (sitting on the kitchen floor eating pasta) I’m about to pass out.

We live on a pretty interestingly diverse street. There are college undergrads two doors down, grad students next door, an elderly lady across the street, a family on the other side. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned yet that I am once again car-less, but seeing as how I spent the first 22.5 years of my life this way, one could say that I’m very, very used to walking quickly and finding [free] public transportation everywhere. I’m on a self-imposed challenge to use as little money as humanly possible while still living comfortably (by “comfortably,” I just mean eating regular meals that don’t include ramen, and not freezing to death).

There are raccoons that hold congregations in the middle of our street. (Seriously, no joke. One of my housemates saw them huddled in a circle and chattering before one let out a squawk and they all ran off to different houses, presumably to raid their garbage cans.) She’s also seen them building a ramp to get into ours.

My school is surrounded by greenery. :] This was taken back in May/June-ish though, when there was still sunlight to be had.

When it was pouring rain the day before yesterday and I lamented the departure of the sun, my classmates told me I’d have to learn to get used to the ever-present overcast gray and osteoporosis.