Is it still called "Vacation Head…"

…if you aren’t coming back?

Now that everyone knows our plans and I think I have the support of my family and friends in our decision to live in the UK, I feel like I’m ready for it to happen now. Now. Yesterday. Soon.

I have never been very good with being patient.

I found myself being very slack with work last week. This week I almost considered letting one of our clinicians interpret for her own client (something I’m vehemently against for ethical and boundary reasons) just so that I could take some time off and go to Atlanta to see Liz and Andrew before they head back to the UK this weekend…why? Of course because I love them dearly, but also because they are a link to Simon and a link to my new life…and because if Andrew talks to me long enough I can almost hear the Yorkshire in his voice.

Liz will get me for that one, I’m sure…love you, ebeth. Mmmmmwa.

Simon and I started going through my collection of Very Important Things that Must Move With Me Everytime I Move while he was here…boxes of old receipts, tons of old photographs, clothes that haven’t been out of boxes in more than five years…stuff. It’s all just stuff and I still have a good metric TON to go through before I move.

Before I move…in February of 2009. I say it like that and it sounds like it’s a million miles away. But if I let myself think on it too long it’s right around the corner and I start feeling like I’m never going to get everything done on time.

Serious Vacation Head. Can you call in sick for that?

Restoration of Faith

Last weekend I happened to see a thread on a large message board to which I belong that announced a missing greyhound in Anderson, SC. Further, said missing dog was seen in areas very close to where Scott and I used to live, so I made a plan to join the search.

Monday afternoon I took my three dogs and we tromped about in the mud at the edge of Lake Hartwell, looking at tracks in the mud and discussing where to put the trap on the property that clearly wasn’t ours. It was while I was there that I learned more about the dog for whom we were searching.

Her owners were moving and had family helping them, a door wasn’t shut tightly, the wind blew the door open, and out one of the greyhounds went to investigate. (I nearly had the same kind of experience just this morning…the lawn service came and somehow didn’t feel it was important to shut the gate behind them, but I digress…) She went missing on the 9th of February, and because the adoption group that her owners used is no longer in business, they felt they were on their own to find her. Finally they had to both move to their new home, leaving behind a newspaper ad and hope that someone would find her.

When those of us in the greyhound-owner community found out she was out loose, we could have just hugged our own hounds and been sad for the poor dog from our own warm homes. But we didn’t. We posted and crossposted information on message boards. We made calls and sent faxes with the dog’s information and last known whereabouts. We tromped about in the mud and underbrush, straining to hear tags jingling over our pounding hearts every time a twig snapped in the nearby woods.

We sat out in the dark, hoping she would magically appear. We made arrangements for search parties and skipped out of work to join the hunt. And finally, as if lead by some unseen force, our poor lost girl wandered up to some volunteers and let them hook a leash to her collar to bring her in from the cold.

I spend a lot of my time alone. I’m engaged, yes, but I’m still single. I have a lot to do for my animals that sends me home for lunch rather than out to a restaurant with co-workers and forbids me to stay out late with friends shopping or just hanging out over a cup of coffee. I don’t begrudge my zoo one moment that I’ve missed out on with someone else to spend time with them, but sometimes I end up feeling rather like an island. My island has a connection to the mainland through the internet, of course, but in my own mind I always plan how I will deal with things on my own. I don’t expect others to help me or to even really be there for me, because I’ve just gotten used to doing things myself and being my own support system.

Seeing all these people come together to help this family that we didn’t even know…that most of us had never even seen, let alone spoken to on the phone…it reminded me that there is a world outside my four walls and that I need to rejoin it before I’ve isolated past the point of sanity. There are good people out there who will help you out for no other reason than it’s the right thing to do. They don’t want anything from you. They aren’t using you. They’re just there, ready to help or listen or dig through rubble to find your lost dog, and I’m proud that I was one of them…and thankful for the reminder.

I dare you…

if you were a college student between 1984 and 1994, to listen to “Kiss Off” without dancing around the room, banging your head and jumping up and down.

Rediscovering music…iTunes rocks. By the way, check out De Novo Dahl. Their song titles are a little…wonky, to say the least, but I got turned on to them by a recent Sci Fi channel commercial featuring their tune “Shout” and I’m loving it. It actually makes me want to go for a fast paced and ever-so-slightly funky walk around my neighborhood.

Further, let’s investigate my musical reccomendations for this week shall we (otherwise known as what I keep skipping to on my iPod)?

American Music and Kiss Off by the Violent Femmes
Gone Daddy Gone by Gnarls Barkley
All that Matters by Addison Road (one of this week’s free tunes on iTunes in the USA)
Sisters of Avalon by Cyndi Lauper
Paralyzer and One Thing by Finger Eleven
Love Song by Sara Bareilles
Where Are You Now? by Ian Van Dahl
Song 2 by Blur (if you’re a Torchwood fan…)
Your Guardian Angel by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus

Shrove Tuesday Meal Attempt

I know that I’m not the best cook in the world. Well aware of that fact, acutally…just consider my other culinary disasters, including but not limited to the time I put french onion soup powder into spaghetti with meat sauce or my famous Nancy’s Noodle Nightmares where I can’t STOP adding ingredients to the skillet…but this time I think it might NOT have been my fault.

Yesterday was Shrove Tuesday/Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras/The Day Before Ash Wednesday and it is traditional in some parts of the world to eat pancakes on this day.

Shrove Tuesday is the term used in the United Kingdom,[1] Australia,[2] and Canada to refer to the day after Shrove Monday (or the more old fashioned Collop Monday) and before Ash Wednesday (the liturgical season of Lent begins on Ash Wednesday). In Ireland, the UK, and amongst Anglicans, Lutherans and possibly other Protestant denominations in Canada including Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick, this day is also known as Pancake Day or Pancake Tuesday, because it is customary to eat pancakes on this day.[3][4][5] In other parts of the world—for example, in historically Catholic and French-speaking parts of the United States and elsewhere—this day is called Mardi Gras. In areas with large Polish-immigrant populations (for example, Chicago) it is known as Tłusty Czwartek and celebrated on the Tuesday before Lent. And in areas with large German-immigrant populations (for example, Pennsylvania Dutch Country) it is known as Fasnacht Day (also spelled Fausnacht Day and Fauschnaut Day). [from Wikipedia]

After hearing Simon and Liz talk about their pancakes, I became inspired to try to make some myself. After all, the recipe that Liz gave me in IM didn’t seem that difficult and I had all the ingredients…sorta.

2 cups flour
2 cups milk
pinch of salt
2 tbsp butter

I assembled the ingredients:

Mixed up a fairly runny batter:

And poured it in the pan, tilting it to spread the batter, and waiting for the bubbles before I flipped it.

Problem is, my skillet isn’t even close to flat and they were burning (we’re talking smoke!) in the middle. So I ended up with gloppy and gross pancakes.

I’m so sad that I used the last of my strawberry jam on the one on the right. Neither was edible. So for the last one I stopped trying to pretend I was English and ate it the old fashioned American way…slathered with “Tastes Like Butter!” and drowned in “Light Lowfat Maple Syrup.”

Note to Self: Ask Santa for proper electric skillet for Christmas this year.