Thursday, February 25, 2010

I went skiing for real

On Tuesday my ski class took a trip to Swain Ski Area, about 40 minutes from Houghton, so that we could experience an actual ski resort. It was my first time ever going to a real ski place. The hills were so tall. It was a rainy day, so the top was hidden in fog. At first we took the shorter ski lift, which only went halfway up, so we could do some easy hills. I was surprised at how high off the ground the lift was, so although it was fun it was also a little scary. Getting off and on took a little getting used to.

The actual skiing felt really different from skiing at Houghton, because even the short hills were way longer. After a few times the TA had us get on the long ski lift, going all the way up to the top. Everyone was saying how ominous it felt, riding up slowly into the fog. The TA took us down the mile sweep, which was still an easy one, but it didn't feel like a mile because I was going so fast. Every time I went down any slope it pretty much felt like I lost all control, and it was only through luck that I didn't fall. I actually did fall once, when I tried a blue square hill. The whole time I was so scared of falling, and then at the very end it suddenly got really steep and I wiped out. My hat flew off, one ski came off, and I lost my poles too. Fortunately I didn't get hurt at all.

So yeah, skiing was interesting; a very unique experience. By the end I was really wet and cold. I liked it, but I'm really not that good at it, so I don't know if/when I'll go again. But I'm glad I got to try it.

Right now I'm home on break. It's really nice to be away from school and be with my family and be lazy. I always feel so different when I'm at home from how I feel when I'm at school; at Houghton I have to be organized and responsible and get to places on time, while here I can do what I want when I want and don't really have to worry about anything. It's weird living at such extremes. Houghton feels unreal now.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I went skiing

So, today I had my skiing class, so I skied, and I fell down a lot, and it was really discouraging. But I kept trying, and I actually started to do better. Next week we're going to a real ski place, Holiday Valley. I don't really feel ready for that, but it will be nice to ski on real slopes and to actually have a chairlift; here they just have a tow rope, which is really uncomfortable and hurts your arms after a while. Speaking of hurt, one of the time when I fell I did something to my knee. I didn't really notice it until I was done skiing and was walking around. It hurt and it swelled a little, so now I have ice on it. That's my story for today. :P

I've been watching a lot of the Olympics; figure skating, my favorite event, was really good last night. The Chinese were pretty awesome.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

An away-from-Houghton adventure

Yesterday Adam, Steve, and I borrowed Alexa's car and drove to Rochester to see Avatar in 3D. I drove, and no, we did not get lost. There was a lot of traffic as we got close to the city, and there were pretty strong winds, but everything went fine. We got to the theater and watched the movie, which was almost 3 hours long. The story was really cliché, but the effects and the 3D were really cool, so it was worth seeing.

Afterward we went to Adam's house for dinner. His mom made us calzones, which were amazing, and we had real salad, so much fresher than Houghton's, and brownies and ice cream for dessert. It was a delicious meal.

Then it was time to drive back, which was when it really became an adventure. Steve drove, since I'd driven the whole way there. It was snowing a little, and it was dark since it was about 9:30 by the time we left. We made it onto the highway and back off fine and continued to follow the directions I'd gotten from Mapquest. But the directions must have been wrong, because we'd been going for a while and hadn't seen the road we were supposed to turn onto.

Then I suddenly recognized where we were--the tiny town of Short Tract, which was really ironic because Eri and I and some other people had been lost there on the way back from church a few weeks ago. We'd called Dan and he had looked up directions and told us how to get back, so I was pretty sure I remembered. But we'd driven past the road we needed to take, so we had to turn around, and the inside of the car was getting really fogged up and the defrost wasn't working very well, so Steve pulled over so we could clear it up. But he'd pulled onto a side road with a good amount of snow on it, and it turned out to be deeper than it looked. We opened a window and wiped the fog off the windshield, and then Steve tried to pull back onto the road. But we couldn't get out--we were stuck in a ditch.

I definitely had a moment of panic, wondering what we were going to do. Adam and I got out of the car and Steve drove forward, able to move in that direction but still not able to get back on the road. It really looked like we were stuck there. Then Steve tried backing up, and as Adam and I watched the back end of the car pulled up and out of the ditch, and the front end followed. After jumping up and down in celebration, Adam and I got back in the car. Steve turned it around, very careful not to go back in the ditch, and we drove back the way we'd come. We had to turn around several more times because I was confused about whether the road we needed was on the left or right, but we found it, and it was the right one.

It was about 15 or 20 minutes back to Houghton from there. The only other problem we had was that Steve's window wouldn't close--Alexa's car is pretty old and beat up, and the driver's side window gets stuck. There's a special way you have to close it, but I didn't remember what that was, so we had to drive the rest of the way with the cold wind blowing right into the car. I felt really bad for poor Steve!

But we did make it back, finally; it was almost midnight and I'd expected to get back around 11. It was definitely an adventure, with its scary moments, but it ended well and makes a good story. It was great to get away from Houghton for 9 hours and see a movie in a theater and eat a real meal in a house with a family.
Right now I'm half-watching the Olympics. The biathlon is on, which is a weird sport. Before that was ski jumping, which was pretty cool. Hopefully I'll be able to catch some of the figure skating tonight.

Friday, February 12, 2010

10 million fireflies

So, now that I don't have Facebook I'm going to try to start blogging more regularly, provided people are actually reading this. So leave me a comment once in a while if you are, so that I know this isn't a waste of time. :)

I started another blog last month, mostly for myself, where I post pictures, poems, and songs/song lyrics that I really like. I wanted to have a place to "collect" all these things, so that I can find them quickly and easily. In case you're interested, it's There are a lot of poems on there already, so if you just want to read the ones I like best, go to the right side where it says "labels" and click on "favorites." A lot of them are ones I read in my poetry class this semester.

I mostly mentioned that because I don't have much else to say right now. Today was an okay day; I went to class, cleaned in Gillette, watched half an episode of the sci-fi series Firefly (, worked as salad runner during dinner, and not much else. So yeah, pretty boring. Tonight Jaela, Alexa and I are going to watch the 4th Harry Potter movie, which is probably my favorite one (not sure though, because I've only seen it once).

So yeah, I guess that's it. Enjoy the weekend!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

I quit

This week I quit one of my jobs, sweeping and mopping floors in the dining hall once a week. I really didn't enjoy it, because it was supposed to take only an hour to an hour and a half, but it always took me at least two hours. And it was a pain, because it's such a big area and it's always really dirty. And it was boring, because I wasn't allowed to listen to my iPod while I worked. So on Monday I told my boss I quit, but I had to work today because he hadn't found anyone to take over. It was utter misery, and I'm really not exaggerating. It took me two hours and twenty minutes, the longest it's ever taken. I was really hot and tired and in a bad mood by the end, but now I'm done forever, and it's such a relief.

I also deactivated my Facebook a few days ago, which probably anyone reading this already knows. Not only did I spend too much time on it, I also was frustrated with the surface-level connection it provides. Status updates simply state what someone is doing, or, if they do talk about anything more serious, it has to be masked by quoted song lyrics. I don't think everyone should be completely honest on Facebook; that wouldn't be appropriate. But that's the point--Facebook isn't meant for deep connection with people. So if I'm not truly connecting with anyone, why bother?

I have other issues with Facebook as well, which I won't get into now. Suffice it to say, I'm very happy it's gone. I actually enjoy getting on my computer and realizing there's no Facebook to check. So that was definitely a good decision. Maybe in the future I'll be back, but for now I'm staying away.