Austin, Texas

14 02 2010

After all was said and done, this is where we’ve landed.  It seems that we just needed to stay closer to home for now.  I can safely say that some of us are more o.k. with this than others, but I maintain that we all have free will, and I am only assuming here but I’m pretty sure that includes Jake and me.  So we make do again with the cards that have been dealt, and hopefully we start winning some hands again.  The chips are definitely down.

Yesterday I went for a hike with my new friend, and it was a beautiful, sunny day after many days of rain, sleet, and damn near freezing temperatures.  It was a welcome respite from the weather that was pretty much mirroring our moods….The path was along the Greenbelt, which I learned runs all the way through Austin.  The water was really high in the river, and there are two main spots to hike to-Twin Falls and Sculpture Falls which I guess when the water is lower leaves large cliff to jump off of and into deep pools.  I’m sure very popular in the summer as the temps get to the upper 90’s and the humidity is high, too.  I’m sure it will be similar to Korea’s summer temps–I cannot imagine it being worse!

There seem to be so many beautiful natural areas within the city, and of course the Little Colorado runs through, too, which I am looking forward to canoeing some time soon.  There are a lot of little lakes around the city that I am looking forward to exploring.  Today I am going to check out Lake Travis; it’s the largest lake which means in the high season there are a lot of motorized crafts, so watch out little canoe!  And fish, and birds, and swimmers, and clean water, and fresh air, and peace and quiet, and and and….

I have been applying to many jobs here, of course, and so far only a couple of bites (including from this garden shop).  Although working there would be awesome, it makes me all the more anticipatory for the start of my teaching program.  The other day I was taking pictures and some kids walked by and soon we were talking about the wildlife in the area, and where to most likely see armadillos–and I got that feeling I got in Korea–I am really excited about being surrounded by that vibrancy again.  Adults pretty much suck, kids pretty much rule!!

Next week I am going to see a roller derby match with my new friend and her boyfriend.  I am pumped to see an event that involves roller skates, swearing, and general badassery!!  Holla! Will post pictures.

Have a great VD, everyone.  I am opting to celebrate Lunar New Year instead.  I think it involves lots of pineapple, so it can’t go too terribly wrong.

Here are pics from my latest escapades:

I’ll try to be better now about staying in touch this way.  It’s nice to have the desk back, and a place to think, and a place to store all my paper clips.


So Now What Do We Get to Panic Over?

28 05 2009

Yesterday was my Open Class (Jake’s was last week), an event where, after several weeks of panic, Korean style, the students’ parents sat in our classes for a total of 40 minutes, watching their children be, well, children.  No matter how hard they try to squeeze it out of them, darnit, it turns out a five year old’s will to party is much stronger.

But my kids were awesome.  They sang their songs, did their dance moves, answered my questions, sat nicely, and no one cried or went crazy.  I am so proud of them (and me!) for doing such a good job.  And they were handsomely rewarded with, what else? 20 cent toys from China that probably broke on their way to the bus.  But I digress….

Today is the final day of Open Classes, and I believe tonight there will be some to much celebrating.  We’ve been on the wagon for so long, I am kinda nervous–like first date nervous–to hang out with Sirs Vodka and Tonic again.  What if they have changed?  What if I have?  What if we don’t have anything to say to each other?  Who am I kidding?

We are officially under three months to go here.  We have decided not to go to China this summer, and just tour around Korea a bit.  We have made a very grown-up decision here (Let the Record Show!!) to save money for the future blahblahblah instead of gallivant about Asia, especially considering that we have already had two fabulous vacations in the last 6 months.  And truly who knows how long it will take us to find gainful employment?  I worry that all the fruits of our sacrifice here will disappear into the ether shortly after our return home.  Any suggestions?

We are going to hike Mt.Fuji before coming home though.  It will be early September, and I hear that it is a night hike with a summit sunrise.  We are so excited.  I am really looking forward to clean air, crisp winds, and views.  I did not realize how ingrained my need for open space was.  We are nestled into a foggy, smoggy valley here, and even on hikes we are lucky to see to the next ridge over, at best.  My mom always said that cloudy days made her claustrophobic, which I totally understand now.

This weekend we will visit a local temple/museum/park with some friends.  I am looking forward to doing something out of the ordinary.  These past two months has been a lot of business on the weekends and not a lot of playing.  I hope everyone has a great weekend and does not spend too much time missing us.