I write to you today with an achy head and slightly stuffed nose, so forgive any non-sensical things I might say. Although you could argue that everything I say is non-sensical, really.
The vice-presidential debate turned out kind of lame, but it provided ample evidence for two things: 1) Joe Biden is really smart and knows his shit. 2) Sarah Palin is completely off her rocker, but a really good public speaker. I spent most of my energy whilst watching the debate keeping up with the live-blogging posts on The Economist blog and Jezebel. Live-blogging makes the debates so much more entertaining, no joke.
Yuval and I went camping during the first weekend in October, and it wasn't until we stumbled out of the tent bright and early on Saturday morning at 9am that I realized how much I've missed camping. It made me want to go camping with my dad, which was something he did with my sister and I every summer before we went back to school. The tradition died off a little when we got to college because of summer jobs and such, and then I moved to Boston.
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We stayed at Salty Acres Campground, a campground near Kennenbunkport, Maine (home to George Bush, Sr.'s summer home). The site was a mile walk from Goose Rocks Beach, and Saturday afternoon saw Yuval and I taking a stroll along the lovely shoreline, hudding in our hoodies against the wind. We sat in the sand for a while, his head in my lap and hoodie completely covering his face, while my head was down with my hoodie up, all to protect us from the wind. So of course neither of us saw it coming when a super cute, super friendly German Shephard bounded over to us to say hello. I looked up, and the dog took that as her cue to push me over and start licking my face. I laughed, Yuval got jealous that the dog was paying so much attention to me, and then the dog gave him the same treatment as I. Only after we had been thoroughly slobbered upon did the owners manage to catch up with their puppy and exclaim, "I hope you're both dog people!" Um, yes we are. Just a little bit.
We spent the weekend sitting by the firepit, building and re-building the fire, eating Italian sausages cooked over said fire, making s'mores, drinking hot cocoa, and snuggling (aggressively, on my part) to keep warm at night. Saturday night I nearly pushed him off the air mattress in my blob-monster-like attempt to leech all the warmth from his body in my sleep. We never showered, brushed our teeth once, and saw infinitely more stars than we ever could in Boston. All in all, it was an amazing trip. Except when I woke up Sunday with a splitting headache, stuffy nose, and nausea (I blame the seasonal changes). But that all went away by the evening when we went out to a delicious Czech/Greek restaurant to celebrate Tsachi's (Yuval's dad) birthday. Tani and Michal got him this for his present. I geeked out when I saw it and told him I'd seen one in action and they are just about the coolest toys EVAR. I'm not sure if he believed me, but he really liked it regardless.
I went to see the doctor that Monday after work to talk about why I am so goddamn tired all the time. Things have gotten to the point where my sleepiness is interferring in my ability to do my work: I frequently "crash" in the mornings and afternoons, where I feel like I hit a wall of exhaustion and cannot keep my eyes open no matter what I do. And I've been experiencing this kind of thing since high school. Not normal, right? My doctor agreed and said it probably had something to do with me getting the wrong (too little) dosage of my meds, which can cause aggressive fatigue. She ordered a blood test just to be sure it's not anemia (and it's not, because of course that would be too easy to fix!), and I'm keeping a daily diary of what I eat, what exercise/activities I do, and how much sleep I get to see if there's any kind of pattern. I'm going back to see her on the 27th, when we'll confer and see how much of a higher dosage she wants to try with my meds. I really hope this works, because if it doesn't I'll have to go get a sleep test done to see if there's anything more seriously wrong with me, like a sleep disorder. :o(
I also had my first Chinese class that night, in which I learned how to read pinyin Chinese and hold a basic "Hello, how are you?" conversation. Chinese is so difficult to learn for me not because of the characters or pronunciation, but because you have to use very specific vocal tones for each word to convey the proper meaning. I didn't have my second class last night because it was Columbus Day, even though I still had to go to work. Stupid Columbus. Also, why can't we rename it "Native American Day" or something like that as a gesture to show we're not completely overlooking the mass genocide that 'ole Christopher's "discovery" started? And there could be special educational and cultural activities in every city to disseminate information about Native American tribes that used to live in that area? I guess it would be too much of a pain in the butt for lawmakers.
The second presidential debate was a total bore thanks to the "town hall" format. What's the point in calling it a "debate" when the candidates aren't even allowed to talk to each other and are encouraged to just read talking points the whole time? Lamesauce.
This past weekend saw some more fun activities. Friday night I had a one-hour facial for only $45 at a salon in Chinatown called CoCo Beauty. It was the best beauty treatment ever! They don't just slather your face in creams and lotions and send you on your way like high-priced salons do. Oh no. They use steam to open up your pores, use a machine to suck out all the stuff in your pores, and then use a special tool to literally pull the blackheads out of your pores. All this is then followed by a soothing cream and a face massage, a cooling peel mask, and really super smooth skin. The rooms are small and it's not fancy at all, but who cares? It's only $45! I totally recommend it to everyone in Boston: the part where she picks out your blackheads hurts like hell, but the rest is so good you won't care.
Saturday Yuval and I headed out to Topsfield for the Topsfield Fair, the closest equivalent to a County Fair that MA has (Ohio, I miss those!). It took over an hour to go the last 2.5 miles since it was a two-lane road and the fair's busiest day. However, it was totally worth it. SO MANY cute baby animals, so much fair food (I got cinnamon roasted almonds, fudge, rock candy, and a corndog), and much laughing. I can haz farm, plz?
Sunday brought another wedding to attend. This time it was for Yuval's co-worker Matt and took place in Chelmsford, MA. The service was Catholic, not uber-so, but enough to put me off the rhetoric. Courtney, the bride, looked beautiful. Matt started crying during the ceremony he was so overcome. The reception was extremely nice and held a fancy country club in Andover (for those not familiar with the area, Andover is a ritzy place to live). There was a turkey dinner, complete with stuffing, apple turnovers for dessert, and much dancing. Yuval won the centerpiece at our table, which of course really meant that I won the centerpiece. A good thing, too, because I was considering taking it anyway. Very pretty.
So here we are, another Tuesday. My plane tickets home for Thanksgiving and Christmas have been purchased, as has my ticket to Kenyon in February. The 25th I'm doing the GuluWalk with Dena. And life is good. Exhausting, but good.
Also, in reference to the title of this post, everyone should go watch this video right now:
Take On Me: The Literal Video Version
The Golem's Eye (The Bartimaeus Trilogy, Book 2) by Jonathan Stroud
The Big Lebowski
Good Will Hunting