Monday, March 31, 2008

I'm such a big girl

I just taught my first full step class today, all by myself! Actually it was already the plan for me to teach the whole class today, but I got an email from the regular instructor (the one who is training me) saying she's sick so she can't make it in, and am ok with doing the whole thing without her there? That immediately caused a panic attack, for reasons including the fact that I can't even work the stereo by myself (it's not a regular stereo, because you can change the speed of the music, so it's tricky!). But luckily there was a class before and after mine, so the girl before me helped me get set up and ready to go, and the fact that there was a class after me meant that I didn't have to put away and lock up everything. I think it ended up going really well, actually. Hoorays! It was a lot of fun, I think this would be way better than being a lawyer. Plus I'd be in better shape, too.

If I were a lawyer already, representing Cal would be my pro bono project

People periodically ask me what's going on with the tree-sitters outside Memorial Stadium in Berkeley...here's a blog entry from a guy who went to check out the action. Apparently there's an order from a judge saying that no one is supposed to be in the trees, but they are of course still everywhere. And Cal can't cut down the trees yet since the injunction is still in place, so we're stuck with them (because for some reason the cops aren't enforcing the order). Damn hippies. Someone posted this letter to them on Craigslist, which I am a fan of. You know what I'm not a fan of? Yup, hippies.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Yet another reason why people should go to law school at Berkeley

According to some website which ranked colleges in terms of how hot their girls are, Cal comes in at number 14! I have to say as I made my way up the list from 50, I was really worried that we weren't going to be included at all. I mean, we talk about Berkeley Goggles for a reason. I guess when you have 30,000 students you're bound to have some hot people, though. And I'd like to note that we came in well above Stanfurd, who made the list at 40. (And the picture they have for the 'Furd girl? Trashy!)

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cruise Part Four

Here we are, the last installment of the trip. Our fifth and last island stop was St. Lucia, which we made another beach day. Here are Chris and Bri at the beach.
And here's a view of the beach. It was very pretty, but we didn't see much other than this one beach.

And that was it for the stops! After that, we had two solid sea days before getting back to Miami. So, what did we do on the ship for two days, you ask? Well, for one, we climbed the rock wall. None of us had ever done it before, so we figured we had to give it a try. Here we are in all of our gear:


And here I am at the top on my climb, having just rung the bell. It's funny, it was fine going up at first, but after about halfway I got nervous (being not so fond of heights and all). I was up to the last hand-hold I had to reach to get to the bell and I totally froze because it was a little high for me to reach, and I got nervous I was going to fall, so it took me a minute to get up the courage to jump up and reach the last stupid handhold. I don't know how those American Gladiators do it, I tell you.


We also went bowling at the mini-bowling alley they have on the ship.


Let me tell you, bowling on a ship that is rocking back and forth (even gently) is really hard, because you never know which direction the bowling ball is going to roll! I don't think I broke 100 playing either game.


Of course, we spent a lot of time just hanging out by the pool, reading and sleeping in the sun. It was great. And here is my tan line as proof of all that time in the sun!


More than anything, we spent a lot of time with each other. Luckily that's easy for us!


One of the nights they had a party complete with drinks made out of pineapples. That was pretty awesome. But really heavy and hard to carry because they cut off the bottoms to make them flat, which meant that they dripped pineapple juice everywhere.

Sometimes there wasn't a whole lot going on, so we had to make our own fun...

Sadly, the whole nine days passed by and before we knew it, it was time to go home! Here we are getting off the ship at Miami.

And off we were for the twelve hour drive back to Durham (surprisingly not nearly as bad as it sounds). But, we had one more awesome thing that capped off our trip. For I don't know, two years maybe, Bri has been telling us about this chain of fast food restaurants in Ohio called Fazoli's, which has "real Italian real fast." There are some in the southeast but none near Durham. Chris actually mapped out any along our route from Durham to Miami but couldn't find any that seemed nearby the freeway. Anyway, as we're driving back up to Durham from Miami, I pulled off on a random exit to find something to eat for lunch. As we're meandering around, being our normal indecisive selves about where to eat, all of a sudden Bri screams at the top of her lungs, "Oh my God, there's a Fazoli's!!!" And there it was indeed. So of course we stopped there and enjoyed some real Italian real fast, which was actually pretty good. Here we are celebrating the occassion.

And that was it for our trip!

Friday, March 28, 2008

A milestone

Two nights ago I finally reached one of my pre-graduation goals. I finished Crime and Punishment, at last! I started reading it at some point 1L year, and I'd read it for a little bit, then put it down for six months, then read a little more, then forget it for another four months, and on and on. I've never taken this long to finish a book. But I finally made myself stop reading other books until I finished this one, and that plan worked. And all I have to say is, Anna Karenina was better.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Oh the horror

I had a similar reaction to Paula's outfit last night watching American Idol, but the Fug Girls explain it way better than I could.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Sports

One of my classmates today asked me if I'd ever heard of Tony Dungy, and proceeded to explain to me who he was. I was very amused by this.

Also, I was so emphatic in kickboxing today that I accidentally elbowed my own knee...and it hurt!

Monday, March 24, 2008

HIMYM and Britney Spears

Spoilers below!
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Ok, first of all, Britney Spears is an absolutely horrendous actress. If she comes near one of my shows again, I will cut her. Second of all, why all the Britney Spears promotion when really they should have been shouting from the rooftops that Sarah Chalke was on the show?? She is so fantastic, I love her, and if I'd know she was on tonight I would have been super excited. Not that I wasn't already super excited, it's HIMYM after all, but still. So I feel like the producers completely focused on the wrong guest star, because let's face it, if you're awesome enough to love HIMYM, you're probably smart enough to loathe Britney Spears and be *less* inclined to watch because she's on, not more. Not that such casting stunts are done for the loyal viewer, but regardless.

Also, that two-minute date he made for Sarah Chalke? Man, I want to be the mother of Ted's kids. That was so sweet and adorable. His real-life dad is a partner at Bri's firm, I should get her to make friends with him (even though he's in a different city) so he can get us together.

In other news, I taught step again today! I did another half of the class, this time with two combinations that I made up myself, and it seemed to go well again. And Cat came, which was fun! She said she liked both the combos and me as a teacher, so yay. I have the instructor exam in less than two weeks, which makes me nervous since I don't know any of the stuff that's on the written exam yet. I hope I actually learn the stuff in time, it'd be really embarrassing to fail. Not nearly as bad as failing the bar would be, but hopefully avoidable nonetheless.

Cruise Part Three

Antigua was the one island where we had a set tour plan for the day. We got off the ship and were met by our tour guide, who took us to another part of the island where we were going to kayak/paddle boat through a mangrove. Bri and I chose paddleboating, and so did most everyone else, but the guide try to scare everyone about how hard it is to paddleboat, and so everyone except for the two of us wussed out and kayaked instead. Which is weird to say since kayaking is harder, but whatever. Here's Bri in our awesome paddleboat.

And here's Chris in his kayak, with some random guy who was on our tour. They were the only two guys so they got paired up (there were only six of us total, the other two were two girls on vacation in Antigua for a week. One of the girls was really nice, and one was super obnoxious and annoying).

Here we are going through the mangroves.

Once we made it through the mangroves, we took a small boat out a bit away from the shore to go snorkel at a reef. Here's the view from the boat.


And here we are on it! It was really pretty underwater, I saw some cool fishies. I bought a disposable underwater camera and took some pictures but I haven't developed them yet (not that I'd be able to show them to you without scanning them or something, seeing as they're real live hard copies).


After snorkeling for a while, we went to a little restaurant for lunch. We got to try some of the local beer, Wadadli. Here is Chris drinking his beer and getting ready to dance this dance we were taught by the band singing (the restaurant was pretty much just for big tour groups coming through). I do have video of him dancing, but I'm not putting it up for now.

And after that we headed back to the boat! Antigua was nice, but it didn't seem like there was a ton to do. The next day we went to Barbados, which I think was my favorite of our stops. It had a very European feel, Bri and I both agreed. This is the Barbados Parliament building.

Barbados was actually the only place we went to where we didn't go to some sort of water (beach or waterfall). Our first stop was to a rum distillery for a tour.



It was actually a surprisingly detailed tour. We got to hear the history of the company, of course, and check out some historical-type rum things. Here are Bri and I at the pot still that the distillery originally used in the 1800s.


And here is Chris outside of what looks like a Barbadian rum shop (it's actually the front of their theater where we watched a video of Mount Gay Rum being made).

We got to try a couple of their rums at the end of the tour, and one of them tasted like scotch, which was unexpected. That's what happens when you let your rum age a lot, apparently.

After that we went to the Barbados museum and got to see lots of old Barbados stuff. It was more museum than I was expecting, given other less than awesome museums I've seen in various places.

They had some other places that sounded like they could have been neat, like George Washington's house on Barbados, but we elected to skip that and head to Ocean Park, an aquarium. Here we are at the entrance! And yes, the seahorses do shoot water.

It was interesting being there because it was run very differently. For example, most aquariums have a touch pool (see picture) where you can hold some of the little sea creatures. In the USA, they have an employee monitoring you and making sure you don't do anything improper. In Barbados, there's no one around so you end up with obnoxious women (not us) poking sea stars with sticks and taking them out of the water.

Another difference? In Barbados, you an actually wade into the Stingray Pool. And again, there was no one around to monitor (although we didn't go in until we saw someone who worked there and were able to ask them if it was ok, because we weren't sure if maybe we were misinterpreting the name "wading pool" somehow...seeing as, again, there were stingrays in there, it just seemed not right).

And that was our whole day in Barbados! When we got back to the ship, our favorite housekeeping guy had left us yet another surprise, this one actually identifiable.

What a red-letter day! Ok, that was long so I'll save St. Lucia for another post.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Coolness

Two-foot-wide starfish? Awesome!

This is only somewhat related, but once I'm settled in up in DC I'd like to get a saltwater aquarium. I know they're a lot of work and all, but I really like them and I think it'd be really neat to have in my apartment. I'm not sure when I'd actually get it, but eventually. I'd probably have to settle for a regular-sized starfish, though...bo-ring.

Cruise Part Two

Sorry for the long delay, it's been busy! But here we are at our first stop on our cruise, Samana in the Dominican Republic. We weren't allowed to actually dock there so we had to be "tendered" to shore by getting in a little boat and being ferried over. It was kind of a hassle, but luckily this was the only place where we had to do that. This was what greeted us as we got off the little boat.

There had been a shore excursion we wanted to do that involved riding horses up to a waterfall and swimming at the waterfall, but the one through the ship was kind of expensive (and would be crowded), so we wanted to avoid that, and the one through a different company left before we got to the island. So we just played it by ear, assuming there would be a bunch of locals there trying to give us tours. And sure enough, there were! We managed to find a guy who would take us to the waterfall. This is the town of Samana right near the dock (about a block looks like this).


...And this is what the rest of Samana looks like. Actually, this is relatively nice for what we saw driving to the spot where we got the horses. It was kind of awful. If you can see in this picture (it's kind of small) they have something about God written in that yellow scroll painted on the house. I'd say at least half, if not more, of the homes in Samana had something God-related written on them, which I found interesting.

Anyway, we finally made it to the horse place and we got relatively decent horses for the half-hour (ish?) ride to the waterfall. It's very interesting, they have kids (high school maybe?) who literally walk along side you the entire way, keeping the horse moving. At first I thought, maybe we're just really close? Or maybe they're just getting started? But nope, they go the whole way. The girl who was with me was very nice though, once she figured out I understood spanish she was chatty with me. However, I could barely say anything back to her because I couldn't remember the words in spanish, just italian, so it was kind of embarrassing. Here we are atop our horses, making this vacation number three involving horseback riding.


And this is the waterfall we went to! Cascada Limon. You swim at the base. There were a bunch of locals there too, and some of the kids (again, probably high school-ish age) would climb up the waterfall partway and jump into the water. No thanks!



Here we are after our swim.


Theoretically after this we were supposed to go to a beach to swim, but we ran out of time so we just called it a day and headed back to the ship.

The next day we were going to Tortola, and there didn't seem to be a lot to do there so we decided to just make it a beach day. Tortola was much nicer than Samana, in standard of living if not in natural beauty. Here is the beach we went to.

Unfortunately it started raining (not downpour, but enough that it was hard to just sit out on the beach) so we finished up early and went back to the ship, where at least we could hide from the rain on the ship. Here is another shot of the island, from the vehicle taking us back to the ship.

When we got back to the ship, though, we had a special surprise! The housekeeping guy that did our hallway somehow knew who we were, because every time we passed him by in the hall he'd say to us "Hello ladies. Christopher." (You have to imagine that with a Filipino accent, too). Anyway, we got back that night and look what he left us in our room!

We weren't *quite* sure what he was (duck? swan?) but I welcomed him to the room regardless.

I forgot, I promised to tell you about the worst magician ever. The ship had a "theater" where every night they had a different sort of show. I don't remember precisely what night it was, but it was either after Samana or Tortola, they had a magician named Richard Burr (not the senator, mind you) performing. He was stupendously awful. Like, you could see the trick behind every damn thing he did. He told very weird stories, and then as he finished every trick he would shout out "Yessss!", as if he wasn't sure if it would work. The best part is, they kept touting him as this magician with five Guinness World Records. However, when we got back home Bri looked him up and it turns out that all five records are for rolling silver dollar coins around his fingers. That's not even magic!! He was truly terrible. Mystic Marty would have been way better. But he gave us something to laugh about, so I guess it was worth it.

Next time: Antigua, Barbados, and St. Lucia. Or maybe some subset thereof.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

And it all makes sense now

I have had a cough for over a month now. For a little while it was in conjunction with being actually sick, but when I recovered from the rest of it, for some reason the cough stayed with me. It's driving me nuts, and today I finally broke down and bought some more cough medicine. I'd used this medicine before, and it worked super well but for some reason I had a really strong reaction to it and it left me feeling completely out of it, like I was in a fog. It was really disconcerting, especially since I'm usually the opposite--it takes a lot of medication for me to feel anything. Anyway, I got this medicine again because I was desperate and was about to take it when I looked at the label closely and realized that I was only supposed to be taking 2 teaspoons of it (every 12 hours)...instead of the two tablespoons I'd been taking before. Which means I was taking three times the recommended dosage. So now I get why I felt so out of it! And it also explains why it worked so well.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Cruise Part One

Ok, I'm splitting this up into a few different posts to avoid picture overload. We started off our vacation at the crack of dawn, driving down to Miami. Here I am, starting us off on our journey.


We passed by some interesting scenery on the trip, including a truck transporting a bunch of chickens. They looked really sad =(


Of course, the biggest landmark was South of the Border. I had never heard of this prior to driving to Atlanta a year and a half ago, but apparently it's this weird amusement park/motel/I don't know what on the border between North and South Carolina. They have billboards for miles in both directions, with great sayings like "You never sausage a place. You're always a wiener at Pedro's!" Here we are passing by it (yes, amazingly enough we decided not to stop.)

We finally made it to Miami and spent the night at our $17 dollar hotel. They didn't have our reservation in their system (shocking), but luckily Chris had printed the confirmation email and so they were stuck with us. It's funny, it was right on the water and right next to the Hilton, but the hotel was really crappy and worth much closer to the $17 we paid than to the going rate (according to Orbitz) of like $160.

The next day, we made our way to the port and to our lovely boat, the Norwegian Pearl.

We'd heard that all you do on cruises is eat, and sure enough, first thing we did when we go there was have lunch!

Then we settled into our lovely room.


It was a bit small, but it didn't matter to us...we were pumped for vacation!



We knew that on the cruise specialty drinks (ie anything other than water, tea or coffee) had an extra charge, so we managed to pose for some pictures which portray what it would look like if we'd brought along some contraband champagne and mini bottles of liquor (which we didn't, of course).


For the first day we were just at sea, so we hung out by the pool, played around on the ship, and just relaxed. It was great! This was when we figured out that the ship was filled primarily with people at least 15 years older than we are, too (turns out it's a crapshoot whether the restaurants/bars/lounges actually have anyone in them or not after 10...some nights you get lucky, some you don't).

Next entry...the island stops and the crappiest magician ever!

It's more than just different grocery stores

On our long drive from Miami, one of the things that came up was how Bri, Chris and I all call the freeway something different. Apparently in New Jersey they call it the highway, because the big roads there aren't actually free, and in Ohio they call it the interstate. Whereas in California we of course call it the proper name of freeway. This reminded me of something that I don't think I blogged about here before. In southern California, we call our freeways "the 15" or "the 805" or whatever. I don't know why, and they don't seem to do this in central or northern California because I remember some of my friends getting into a fight (of sorts) over how the 5 should be referred to (I-5 versus The 5). Anyway, this summer at work I was talking to one of the associates about how I take "the 635" to get to work and he just started laughing at me, and of course I didn't know why until he started mocking my "the" addition to the freeway name. I guess it's one of those habits that will never die, even if I'll be looked at askance by people until I move back to San Diego someday. Although the freeway around me in Durham is 15-501 and I don't call it "the 15-501" because that would just sounds silly.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

You're a low priority, I'm sorry

I realize I haven't posted very much since I've been back, but I've been busy trying to catch up on things, and I still don't have pictures anyway from the trip. I should be getting them today, though, so you'll get some stuff soon, I hope. I will start off the general story-telling, though--it turns out that young people take five-day cruises, and old people take nine-day cruises. We were on a nine-day cruise...so we were pretty surrounded by the elderly and people with kids. There was literally a woman on the ship who is turning 102 in July. Yeah. Anyway, there was one other group of young-type people that we saw around a lot, three guys and two girls, who were around our age, and we never talked to them even once. They did our thing, we did ours, for nine days. On our last day, as we were driving from Miami back to Durham, we stopped just across the Georgia border (maybe six hours from Miami) to get gas. And as I walk out of the mini-mart, who do I see? That group of five! By the time I realized it was them I'd have had to shout to get their attention and that would have been a little awkward, so I just let it go, but what are the odds?

Catching up on stuff

This is pretty much exactly what it was like living in Berkeley:



And Crepes A Go-Go really *is* delicious!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Didn't fall overboard, hooray

Well, I'm back in Durham! I'm sure you've been waiting to hear all about the trip, and it was awesome. Sadly I have no time to update yet (and no pictures with which to update yet), so it'll have to wait. I'm so behind, too! I haven't read for class, seen what's going on in the news or on blogs, or watched television in ten days! So this is going to be a busy week for me. I'll try to fill you in on the highlights of the trip as this week goes by, I haven't figured out if I want to go chronologically through the whole thing (in pieces, don't worry), or if I should just post random pictures and let you sort it out. We'll see. All I know is, I have a class at 7:55 am tomorrow...ick. Good news is, the professor never sent out the reading assignment so at least I'm in the clear there!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

And thus begins my last spring break ever

Spring break officially started tonight at 7pm! Tomorrow morning we leave for Miami (driving, sadly, but flights were so ridiculously expensive that it's worth it), and then we stay in Fort Lauderdale for the night. Guess how much our beachfront Fort Lauderdale hotel is. $17! Who knows if Orbitz made a mistake or what happened, but Chris booked it and it's ours! Then we leave Friday midday on the cruise, hooray. Still no camera, but Chris is basically giving me his camera for the week, because he never takes pictures (he wasn't even going to bring his camera) and just relies on the ones I take. So this way I didn't have to rush getting a new camera, which is great. I probably won't be back online until I get home, because internet is available on the ship and yet horribly expensive, so I'll just assume all will be fine if you don't hear from me until Monday the 17th (which is both St. Patrick's Day and my mom's birthday!). So, everyone have a good week, and I'll see you in a week and a half!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Bye bye Brett

Well, he's finally retiring. I've been saying that he should for a while now, and he's been playing for 17 years, so it seems like it's about time. Plus, now hopefully we'll get to see Aaron Rodgers in action! Brett Favre has had a great career, and he seems like a really nice guy, so I hope he is happy with his decision. And I hope Aaron Rodgers becomes a franchise quarterback.

Say cheese! (Updated)

Today is class picture day! Yup, just like in elementary school. In fact, I'm betting sixth grade was the last time I had a class photo. So, now law school is no longer like high school, it's elementary school. Except for class pictures now we have to dress up in a dark suit, which is not quite as fun as what I wore in elementary school. Actually...in elementary school I was either in a school uniform (definitely not fun) or in neon stretch pants (I loved color just a little too much), so maybe it's not so bad after all.

Update: We were supposed to meet for the picture at 12:15, and it started raining literally at 12:12. And stopped by 12:30, but it was too late and they cancelled the picture. Although instead of the rain date they gave us (the Tuesday after spring break) they decided to do it tomorrow at 12:15. I have a test during that time! Dumbasses. Luckily I spoke to that professor and she's letting me do the exam later that afternoon, so it works out ok, but why have a rain date if you're just going to make up some other date anyway?

Monday, March 03, 2008

Terrible news

I forgot to mention, I just found out that the 24 hour Wal-Mart around here is no longer open 24 hours a day! It's closed from midnight to 6am. Now, I ask you, how are we supposed to make our jello wrestling pools in the middle of the night if the Wal-Mart is closed?? What a disaster!

Yay me!

Guess what I did today. You totally didn't just guess, but that's ok, I'll tell you anyway. I taught part of a step class! I did the warm-up and the first combination. I was really nervous, but the class was pretty small today, as luck would have it, and so I figured, ok, might as well give it a shot. And it was a lot of fun! Lisa (the woman who is teaching me and who shared her class with me today) said I did a really good job and just had a couple of minor pointers for me. So hooray! I figure now that I've got the first time over with, it'll be a lot easier to do it a second time. It was kind of exciting doing something different and challenging, but I was really nervous. I'm feeling a lot better about that stupid test now after today, too, which is great.

I went to the dog park yesterday with Jamie, as we do every weekend, and there were two little girls there, maybe 10 years old (not related, both their with different families). And their names were Bronwyn and Indigo. Ok, I know I don't have much room to talk, but really? Those are the best names their parents could come up with? Especially Indigo. Come on. Other than Violet (which is a real name), colors were meant to describe colors only, not people.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Totally manageable (I think)

Yesterday I was having one of those days where it feels like I have way too many things to do, I can never get it all done, and my world is going to fall apart as everything I need to do goes to hell. But today, I'm thinking that it's all going to get done, I can handle it! Which is a much better feeling. And I leave for spring break on Thursday, hooray! That's part of the "too much to get done" problem, but right now I'm just excited to be going someplace warm soon. I'm so looking forward to wearing skirts and dresses and shorts and basically anything except pants. As I mentioned before, pants suck.

Saturday, March 01, 2008

People are ridiculous

I was checking the website of my local animal shelter, where I got Jamie, and on the front page they have the news that a foster dog was stolen!! Someone had their house broken into, and the poor 12 year old dog was stolen!! Who does that???

ATP, I thought I was done with you

I'm thinking that the new thermometer I bought on Thursday might not be working right. I just took my temperature and it says that it's 96.9. I'm pretty sure that that's outside the normal range and thus is probably not accurate. So I guess I can ignore all of the temperature-taking I've done over the last three days?

I got the study materials for the group fitness instructor exam today in the mail...and now I'm scared of this test! There's 100 multiple choice questions, which cover biology, anatomy, things like "which exercise isn't an example of X?" and basically all that stuff that I haven't thought about since AP Bio. I have to get 80% of those right, which is waaay more than I had to get for the MPRE! And then there's the practical portion, where I have to do a bunch of stuff both in a group and by myself, and I have to get a "pass" in nine out of ten categories. So now I'm scared I'm going to embarrass myself and fail this exam. Great.