January 2006 Archives


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(or PFK if you're from Quebec - pronounced "pay - ef - kah")

Why does my office suddenly smell like Kentucky Fried Chicken?

Stream of consciousness ... last night, we were looking for curtains about 80 cm long and the lady told us that she "had kinder but no chicken". Fortunately it took us long enough to figure out what she was trying to say so that we didn't giggle about it until we'd left the store.

[translation: she had curtains for children's bedrooms, but none for the kitchen]

Which leads me to:

If we do end up staying for another year we are going to finally start studying Hebrew, that way we'll have stories about stupid stuff we say.

And that's the end of my thought process for the mo'.

Ethereal Addict

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Hello, my name is Mara, and I am an ethereal addict.

Betterhuman.org sounds good (in a "hey would some of my athiest friends be interesed in this?" way)- until you start getting in a bit deeper and suddenly feel an overwhelming wave of creeped-out feeling for having somehow crept into one of your favorite distopia novels. Like, at one point, the guy* says that tolerating other peoples' beliefs is problematic. Yikes!

*Ironically, the guy who started this movement based it on a science fiction novel he wrote. Hmmmm.

[Actually, I have this crazy fear that they'll find this blog entry, hunt me down and attack me for my subversive comments, and I'll have to go into hiding just to stay alive.]


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I wanted to write about this a while ago. I was cleaning out my desk, and I found a note reminding me to write about it. At first I thought it was too seasonal and would be too out of context, but in the end, well, you can see I decided to do it anyway.

Back in October we had the use of a car for a month. Every weekend we drove out to a better-than-Haifa beach. There's one in Atlit where you have to pay a few dollars to get in, but considering how much less filthy and obscenely overcrowded it is in comparison to Haifa's beaches, it's totally worth it. It is a rather shallow, protected beach, so you'd have to get pretty far out to worry about the current. One side of it is a huge sandbar so a person can go out rather far - and then there is actually a 'sub-beach' sandbar out a ways that you can go out to and laze around on, too.

One day, we wandered over to an area no one was exploring. We noticed that, if we weren't imagining things, we were getting nipped by some little critters. Mark put on his goggles and did a bit of exploring. If we didn't stand, but kept moving, the fish left us alone. Eventually, Mark discovered a bit of a coral reef (no, that's not what we were standing on - totally unrelated, I guess). Anyway, we all took turns putting on the goggles and hovering over the coral reef. The others would stand at the edge and pull the goggled person back if they were floating too far out.

It was pure magic. Once I put the goggles on, it was like I'd disappeared from the planet. I hate to sound obvious, but it was an other-worldly experience. I hung out over the reef, looked at the beautifully colored fish and then I went off and explored other areas, diving a bit deeper to look at the bottom of the sea. Of course, it was rather shallow, so I rose back to the top pretty quickly. It was such a reinvigorating experience.

I definitely need to get myself my own pair of goggles.

Spinach Lasagna

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The other night, we were over at the Ishikawas. Mark was enjoying various board games and I hung out and watched a movie [The Castle - absolutely hysterical]. We brought spinach lasagna with us as a contribution to dinner. Apparently, Amelia had been seriously craving lasagna, so she was pretty enthusiastic about the lasagna, as were others. It made me feel pretty good. And then I said the magic words, "it's my mother's recipe".

It's the little things. Months back, my mother told us to get any 'end of life' issues out of the way now, while everyone is still feeling well and healthy. At the time, I thought, "I don't have any unresolved issues and secrets." I couldn't think of anything. What I am realizing is that there are things that I want my mother to know. I want her to know what I will remember about her, what she has meant to me and done for me. One of my friends, whose mother has passed away, was talking about how he can't always remember her before the cancer. I feel like by telling my mother what I will remember, and asking her what she wants me to remember, maybe I can hold on to these memories differently.

Problem is, now that I've thought of this, so much triggers something that I feel I should tell her. Like the lasagna. It's her recipe, and every single time I make it, no matter where she got the recipe herself, I will think of her - as I do now. It's the same with knitting, which then extends into every form of artwork I dabble in, as she is my creative source. She taught me not just how to knit, but the value of art and participating in art.

My problem isn't where to start. It's that it has no end. Maman, I can tell you what I will remember, but I will continuously have amendments. And so I keep putting it off, until I 'have the time to sit down and really reflect', which of course is the danger.

I guess this is my start, and now you know I'm thinking about it.


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You may have noticed the map to the side of my blog that has appeared recently.

We Dornbrooks are curious folk. We'd like to know where in the world our readers are. We're not looking for street address, eye color and DNA prints, just the city you live in - and in which country. So when you've got a moment, mosey on over to the link and let us know where in the world you are!


Working on a Sunday

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It's so normal to me now, I forget sometimes that I'm "working on a Sunday" and what that means to people who are not living in Israel.

Here, it is the beginning of the work week, so we start on Sundays. I do not, however, work on Fridays. Or, at least, most of them. I work 2 Friday mornings a month. Not bad, though I do definitely enjoy my two day weekends when I get them!

So, here's me working on a Sunday. And it means exactly the same to me as it does to you to go to "work on Monday".


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I rock. Oh yes, I can see the doubt in your eyes, but it is soooo true.

I went to the Clothing Exchange tonight. It is the Baha'i World Centre's response to Goodwill - except it is free. Any clothes (or books, shoes, dishes, etc.) that we don't want - or don't have room for when packing to return home - we can drop them off at the CE so that someone else can use them. This is especially useful for people who come from places which do not have the same climate as Israel. So, I was looking to either supplement my winter stock or find something I might need for the summer that I might just end up staying for. And I did find a few things.

But the queen of all finds was for Mark.

I can't even believe it. I almost didn't look through the piles of men's pants for him; he's not the most typical size, so even finding his size in shops is difficult. But I thought, aw, what the heck, there are only a few pairs as it is. Well. Whehehelll. Second pair of jeans I picked up turned out to be a brand new - all labels on - pair of GAP jeans in Mark's exact size already hemmed to his exact length. Can you believe it? I could barely believe it - I had to check the tag - this really is men's, right?

It is worth mentioning the way pants are typically made for men in Israel: they are low cut in the waist and high cut in the inseam (polite speak for "crotch"). So, if you get the picture ... there must be a lot of uncomfortable men out there. Well, not so with the jeans made by the semi-slave labor of GAP! And to get a solution for free was even better.

Here's a photo of the happy customer. Not the best shot of Mark, but the jeans came out perfectly. :-)

[and when Movable Type is no longer being snotty I will share that photo with you - err, Nae, why can't I upload photos when on a Mac?!]

In any case, to know that I was able to get a good pair of jeans for my rather agonized husband was very gratifying and his overwhelmingly happy response was the perfect icing on the cake!


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So, Mendon and Kristen have returned to Ohio. We had a wonderful time with them. We drove them to the airport on Thursday night (no, not 'evening' - night), and as a result our sleeping was knocked out of whack a bit. Yesterday was blissfully vegetative. Our accomplishment for the day? We put our living room furniture back to normal - since it had been rearranged for the lovely violin concert Kristen gave us last week.

I can feel the fog lifting - slightly. Agenda for today: more nothing!

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from January 2006 listed from newest to oldest.

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