New Passport Win

Oct 21, 2016 by

  UGH. For 2 months, I lacked the magical combination of simultaneously having good wifi, power (yes, as in electricity!) and the will to blog. Not once did these three things coincide, though each on their own came and went. Since the end of August, I was in Malawi, and these last two weeks, I visited friends in Zambia and Qatar. As I’m secretly (now not so secretly?) trying to get through the alphabet in countries visited, I’m really jazzed about getting a Z country under my belt.     So, I have to say. My brand new passport is pretty badass so far: USA for clinical rotations. Malawi for more optometry nerding out. Zambia to visit a friend and his family. Qatar to reunite with two of my beloveds. Both Malawi and Zambia...

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Crumbling, Booming

Aug 28, 2016 by

  From outside, the Kamuzu Stadium looked like a relic, something from a movie about Africa set in the 1970’s. Inside, the stadium was packed with life, the throngs of fans roaring.     I’m not much of a soccer/football fan, and I’d go so far as to say that the actual sport aspect of attending this match was boring. Instead, I spent my time observing people, listening to their shouts and watching their celebrations. For me, that is the experience of attending a sporting event abroad. At least, one that isn’t hockey. I went with Christopher, one of the guys who lives and works here in Blantyre. I’m not really sure of his exact job description, but his English is good, and besides his regular duties in the office, he’s taken it upon...

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Aug 15, 2016 by

  Almost seven years later, and too many new places added to my roster since I visited Rio, this city, this country, is still one of the most beautiful, one of the most jarring, one of the most magnetic and addictive. It’s raw and huge. It’s dangerous and exciting. The people are striking and warm. The energy pulses, through the day and through the night. Brazil is relentless, Rio persistent. Go once, and its heart will beat within you for years (and years) to come. It’s hard to imagine being the person I was in these photos, all those years ago. I had a different guy in my life, a different career, bangs(!) for crying out loud. So much has changed for me on a personal level, but the world throbs on, and the games are...

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Unexpected Experience

Aug 2, 2016 by

  I’m reminded of the time Kathy wanted me to hold warm bread. Not because the experience was similar in nature, but similar in sentiment. It was like stopping to smell the flowers or watching a sunrise. It was a blessed moment, one I was altogether unprepared for as I heard the sound whistle by. I stopped, wondering what it was. Looking around me, there was nothing but canyon views, backed by the La Sal mountain range. The day was easily 35-40C and not a tickle of wind floated by. I could see no immediate explanation for the sudden zip of sound that broke through my always boisterous and stubborn self-talk. Then, there it was again. That sound. There was something mechanical about it, something metal and calculated about it. A flash of black. A...

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Keep Portland Delicious

Jul 23, 2016 by

  This Where to Eat type post is really more of a Where I Ate type post. I wasn’t in Portland long enough to dig my teeth into the culinary culture and provide earth shattering recommendations, but I can certainly provide my opinion on the places I ate/drank while there last weekend. And if I’m being honest, I think I did very, very well. First up, Masu.     I admit, I’m a total sushi snob and I have a hard time eating sub-par sushi. Masu definitely delivered, and I left a happy girl. The fish was all excellent and fresh, and I even had a new experience: quail egg (uzura). They were served as the above photo shows, with an opening in the top and the little yolk inside. Served raw, they are eaten in one quick...

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The Ultimate Countdown

Jul 19, 2016 by

  Couples count down for a lot of things. Anniversaries and birthdays celebrated together. Family holidays, Christmas, Thanksgiving and Sunday dinners. Engagement celebrations, bachelor/ette parties and weddings. Pregnancies and babies on the way. Possession day on a new house.     Finally, for us, a door has shimmied open, and just a tiny slice of light is wedging its way through. Down at the end of a long, black tunnel, a glimmer of illumination has at last appeared. Our countdown has reached the single digits. It’s a countdown that only became relevant to us recently when we realized… single digits. We quickly made a list to confirm.     After 5 years of long distance, countless visits in Waterloo, and meeting up in Iceland, Ireland or the USA… after too many snotty-nosed, red-eyed ugly crying sessions...

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A Book Is Born

Jul 14, 2016 by

  The landscape was her inspiration. For me, it was as it appeared: fresh, cool, new. I’d been in India/Nepal/Qatar for almost three months and had become accustomed to the constant sweating, the suffocating and heavy heat. Relentless. Arriving in Wales, things were green again. The beads of moisture clinging to the air were cool, dewy on my skin. They were not an insufferable density of unbearable heat, pressed thick against my skin as the humidity was in India. While I was basking in the freshness of it all, she was dreaming up her second novel. And I was just a passenger in her car, a bystander to the storm of creation that was brewing in her mind. I was just there for the ride. Happy birthday today to The Creeper Man in the UK! The book is...

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Hikes For Wimps: Capitol Gorge

Jul 10, 2016 by

As I’ve been living in Utah since April and taking full advantage of as many outdoor opportunities as possible, I’d love to share those with you! And since I’d go so far as to align myself with Jim Gaffigan and call myself “indoorsy”, I’d like to focus on some of the hikes I’ve done that would be great for people like me: afraid of heights, lacking a lot of fancy gear, and unmotivated to sleep on the ground. Let’s begin!     When visiting any park, state or national, keep your eye out for a trail guide. Grab a map and plan which hike you’d like to do according to difficulty. Here’s the trail guide from Capitol Reef. While visiting Capitol Reef National Park, I did two hikes, and these filled my day and left me satisfied. The...

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