So, we’re nine days into ’09. Let’s take a look at what I’ve done so far, lest the entire month slide past only for me to exclaim in dismay “Hang on – have I even been outside yet?!”.
2009: Activities so far
* Coughing. Of the loud, hacking, my-lungs-are-going-to-come-out-of-my-mouth-soon variety.
* Sneezing. Aren’t sneezes strange? I always sneeze at least twice. My dad usually manages about ten once he gets going. Would my eyes really pop out if I kept them open while sneezing? I scoff at such an idea, but I’m a little scared to try holding them open.
* Snow-watching. The snowflakes in Estonia are the biggest, fluffiest snowflakes I have ever seen. I do not know why it is that they should be different from Irish snowflakes, but they are. It is like a bunch of angels are having a rather undignified pillow fight on one of their clouds, and feathers are flying everywhere. Not only are they big and fluffy, but if you examine them close up, they are picture-perfect crystals! This delights me. Snowflakes always just looked like white blobs to me. I could never understand why, in pictures, they were shown as those pretty, hexagonal, symmetrical crystals. They are beautiful.
* Walking on water. It’s very cold here, I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that before. Entire lakes are freezing over, now. I really was very amused by all the local women taking shortcuts across the frozen surface, shopping bags in hand. They’re very resourceful, the Estonians.
* Working. My brain seems to be getting back into gear, and for this I am thankful. So far this year, I have written articles about white elephants, Kings of Siam, casinos, and a stickman who comes to life and brutally murders everyone. You can’t say that my job is dull.
* Enjoying an extremely nice lunch at Novell, the funky restaurant down the road. I’ve wanted to go in for ages, but thought it would be crazily expensive. It’s all ultra-modern prints and bright colours and cool lighting, and I’m always a bit envious of the well-dressed business people drinking coffee or cocktails at the tables by the window, comfortably lounging back on piles of silk cushions. Anyway, Santa left some money in my bank account to make up for not visiting me at all this year, so finally I had an excuse to treat myself. And guess what? It wasn’t expensive after all! And both my meal and Riho’s were exceptionally good, so I guess we’ll have to go back. Am trying to come up with ways of becoming a food critic in order to eat out for free.
* Discovering, to my great delight, baked beans in a local supermarket. I had given up on finding baked beans, so I really am overjoyed. I had Cheesy Beanos (that’s beans mixed with cheese – a Glasgow student favourite) on toast with HP sauce, and it was wonderful. As are the Tayto cheese and onion crisps mum sent me in the post…
* Reading. So far I’ve finished The Time Traveller’s Wife, two entire school series by Enid Blyton, Jingo (Terry Pratchett), and the original Adrian Mole. I am currently halfway through Adrian Mole: the Cappuccino Years, and have a Bill Bryson lined up for after that. Yay for my rediscovered love of books!
* Looking for a short housesitting assignment in a sunny place, in the hope of getting a bit of sunshine for a couple of weeks and therefore preserving my sanity.
* Watching the second season of 24. I’m not much of a casual TV watcher: I tend to find a show that I like and then watch it all the way through from the first episode, and I don’t think it’s good for me. In the past year, I’ve watched every season of Lost, The Office, Hustle, and season one of 24. With the exception of The Office, these have all contributed to the fact that I am now incredibly suspicious of everyone and everything, jump uncontrollably when I hear a loud noise, and apparently scream things like “I swear I don’t know any of them! I don’t know the prisoners!” in my troubled sleep.
And there was me thinking I’d been sitting around doing nothing…