Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Happy happy Tuesday

I called Rogers today to find out how many months I had left on my contract not really remembering what I started it but I got good news. My contract ends with them March 12! Just 4 days before I leave.
The lady was super nice and understanding. Informed me that I had to call in February to inform that I was cancelling. Can do! Adding that to my list of things to do.

My bank appointment with Scotia went really well the other day. I feel really confident with them. The lady who helped me,  Jocelyne was super nice and helped me go through setting up a bank account. She made sure I understood everything which I thought was great. Money is something I hate talking about. I don't like feeling stupid over things I do not know and she really helped a lot. I will need to set up an appointment with BMO and change my accounts to lessen the fees before moving most of my funds to Scotia. The cool thing about Scotia is that they are linked to so many different banks abroad so that you don't have to pay crazy fees.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Week November 17-23rd

This week has been big. I have thought a lot of things during this week and a lot of things have happened. The ball has started to roll, the pawn has made a move.  Work is still the same. I have not heard back from the interview on wether or not I have the supervisors role. I hope that I get it but at the same time am very open to not getting the position. If I do not get it then I will move back to being Production Coordinator which means that I will not be paid as much.

On Sunday me and my sister went and watched About Time with my sister. We went to the New Westminster Quay for lunch at the Paddlewheeler Pub and each got the beef dip. Across the street from the Quay is the New Westminster Skytrain which also contains a Shoppers Drug Mart, Safeway, Landmark Cinemas and various other stores. The movie was very good. I really enjoyed the acting as well as the story line. The main actor Domhnall Gleeson is the son of Brendan Gleeson, who stars in two of my favourite films In Bruges and The Guard. I am glad to see Domhnall getting more films. I think the idea about going back in time to change moments is very interesting and had me questioning what moments in time I would go back and change. I know the concept is that if you change the past your now would be different. You may not be where you are now, you may not know the people you are so close to, you may not be the same person. 

On Monday I didn't really do much. :P Probably a bit of sleeping and working and thinking.

On Tuesday I went and saw Thor 2 which I really enjoyed. Tuesdays are cheap day at the movie theatre so I try and watch movies on Tuesdays so that I can save money. I really love movies if you hadn't noticed. I thought the acting was very good. Tuesday was also very big as I booked my flight. That was a very bold move as I have not yet got my visa so I better get that damn visa or else I'm just going on holiday.

Wednesday and Thursday were much like Monday. Lots of planning going on but nothing really big.

On Friday I decided to go to Scotia Bank to ask about their accounts. I've made an appointment for Monday the 25th to talk about opening up one. I have a visa card with them which I really enjoy as I earn points towards free movies. Feeds my addiction I guess. The cool thing is that Scotia Bank is linked to Barclays in the Uk so you can use their ATMs for free. I have heard really good things about Barclays being able to open accounts without proof of address which is amazing so I am leaning towards them for my bank account when I move across the pond. After the bank I drove to Metrotown to check out Atmopshere, an outdoor store to see if they had the Osprey Porter 46 backpack that I was interested in. They did not. I really should have called ahead. 

I gave up on that and decided to head over to the theatre to watch The Hunger Games Catching Fire. The line up for it was so long so I quickly evacuated the mall and drove all the way to Coquitlam in hopes of gaining access to the movie. I hustled inside, booked a ticket at the VIP cinema with my points so it was free! Saving me $19.  I walked right in, sat down half way through the previews and watched the film in a half empty theatre. No one next to me. Very enjoyable.  I really liked the movie. I cant remember much of the first one in terms of detail. I have read all three books but I could not say it this one was better. Curse my bad memory. The ending was very good and left me wanting more. I went to Coquitlam Centre afterwards and did a bit of shopping, again checking out Atmosphere only to find they did not have the bag. The associate checked the system and found out that the Park Royal store has the bag.  Now I knew where it was.

On Saturday I met up with my sister to take her to the doctor's. It was a quick appointment luckily. After we went down to West Broadway and enjoyed burritos from Best Burrito. The reason we went down to West Broadway was to check out MEC and see their Wayfarer backpack that retails at $79.00. The backpack was quite cool and comes with a daypack but I was not fully sold on the bag. We decided to drive to West Vancouver and check out the Atmosphere there for the Osprey bag. We found it tucked away. It was the green bag. The bag comes in green, red and black. It retailed at $129, I have found it at REI in Bellingham for $99.00 but online I was able to find it for $74.25 on Amazon. That would be a savings of $54.75 which is pretty crazy! I hope that the price does not go up as I am still unsure if I want to spend the money on a new bag. I have a Tatonka Great Escape 45 which is very heavy in comparison to the Porter.  I will make a post about the two bag options I am thinking about very soon.

After dropping off my sister I went to Coquitlam to my coworker Jess' nail painting party. It was a lot of fun. We painted our nails, chatted, enjoyed pizza and ended the night playing Cards Against Humanity. We all arrived around 6 and left at Midnight so a good solid six hours spent there. I went home and fell quickly asleep.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013


I booked my flight!!!!! I know I should have waited until I have my visa but I booked it. I kept seeing all the prices and didn't want them to go any higher.

In 117 days I'm going to London with our without my visa. I am planning to apply in January for my Youth Mobility Visa.  I have made a big list of what I need to do and have printed out the application form and have filled it out, noting what I need to fix and make clear on my more polished one when the time comes.

The flight leaves from Seattle which requires my sister to drive me. I'm hoping maybe we can go to the Cheesecake Factory for lunch before my flight, ha ha! I am flying with Iceland Air and have a small layover in Reykjavik. I think thats pretty exciting. I leave on MARCH 16TH and arrive on MARCH 17TH in London at 12 pm.

Sunday, November 17, 2013


Why is making decisions so hard?  Book the tickets or not! Wait or not! I need to sleep on it some more.


Alright, I have started to look at flights but nothing is set in stone yet. I need to figure out how much time I need for my visa. I am planning to leave on March 18th it seems.

I am trying to decide if I want to do a little side trip and travel a little before going to Manchester and trying to find work.  I have found a flight with Icelandair for $398 to Manchester and another to Paris for $409 with Icelandair.  I'm playing around with Momodo.com and getting all excited and at the same time nervous as it makes it all more real. I have found another flight to London for $398 from Icelandair. All these flights are leaving from Seattle which is a two hour drive from Vancouver and will require my sister to take me there. All the flights from Vancouver are at least $150-$200 more expensive than flying out of Seattle. Thats money in my pocket if my sister takes me.

I can find the flight to Manchester for $398 on March 18th, 20th and 25th. This flight is just about $98 more than the fee for the visa application.

I need to get rid of more of my belongings which is going to be difficult. I also need to call my mother and find out what she would like to do with my car. Have to figure out what is going on with the insurance but it ends in June which is when I will be in Europe!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Long weekend in Victoria

I had been invited to go to Victoria with my sister for the Remembrance Day long weekend to visit our friend Chris ages ago but had initially turned her down. The weekend came around and I had no plans at all. Chris pestered me about coming and my sister questioned again whether I wanted to come or not.

I hummed and I hawwed before deciding that I did not want to be left home alone so I stuffed my things into a duffel bag and went to pick my sister up from work. I picked her up after she got off at 3 pm and we headed for the ferry terminal. Luckily we made it onto the 5 pm boat with no problems.

The sunset from the ferry.

We arrived in Swartz Bay and headed for Saanich where Chris lives. The whole entire time of driving there and the ferry we had not told him that I was coming. My sister pretended that she was taking the bus. We planned to surprise him at the bus stop but after a few confusing directions we let the cat out of the bag. We drove to his house and met him there.  We went and watched Don Jon at UVic's Cinecenta. As I had not slept at all that day since being at work I fell asleep half way through the movie. Apparently I did not miss much.

The next day we woke up and enjoyed some really yummy food at Floyd's Diner in Sydney. I had the really yummy eggs benny called The Homer.  

After breakfast we went to meet up with Chris' friends Allison and Karen. We played a card game called LeCardo which I thought was quite fun. We walked over to Thrifty Foods where we picked up the supplies to make some mini-pizzas which turned out deliciously once we got back to the apartment to make them. Chris made some delicious whoopie pies for us to enjoy. After lunch we played a game called Urban Myth. The game was a little fun but was over too soon.

After we left we headed back to Chris' house and got ready as we were off to the ballet! We arrived downtown early so that we could find a place to eat. Since we were still full off of lunch we really struggled to find a place to eat. Everything seemed to expensive and nothing really caught our eye. We finally settled on The Mint which was a perfect fit for what we wanted. I had some delicious water buffalo momos, Shawn a butter chicken naan pizza and Chris had a tasty meat dish.

We arrived at the ballet in perfect timing to take our seats. It was at the Royal Theatre and by the Alberta Ballet and called Fumbling Towards Ecstasy. It was performed to songs by Sarah McLachlan which I thought was very cool. It was my first ballet and I thought it was very good.

We woke up Sunday and made some really good pancakes and bacon. I helped cook the bacon but I don't think I am very good at making bacon but I attempted. We had slept in which was nice. We headed to go for a little walk. We climbed a small mountain and could see all over the coastline which was very beautiful. Glad the rain held off.

We wanted to go to a little deli and pick up supplies for a picnic lunch but the place ended up being closed for the holiday so we settled on 5th St Bar and Grill and boy were we glad we did. I enjoyed the Buffalo burger. It was so tasty. I wanted to try all their other menu items. Wish it wasn't on the Island.

Later we went and had dinner at Boston Pizza before enjoying a quiet night in playing Cards Against Humanity.

The next morning we woke up and got ready to leave for home. Before we left we went for a walk around Swan Lake which was very nice.

After that it was home again. To my kitty and to my bed.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Hard stuff

I had a phone interview with HR from work today about the Supervisor role. I currently am acting supervisor so know how to run the shift in order to get work done but I find out later this week whether or not I can keep it.

If I dont get it then I guess I would be demoted back to my prior position of production coordinator.

I made up my resume yesterday. Had to purchase pages just to make the damn thing. I needed resume editing capabilities anyways, with the whole planning to move abroad and work dealio.

Man I really hope I get it.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

On my Bucket List

One of the things on my bucket list is to attend Falles. Falles is a traditional ceremony that takes place annually in Valencia, Spain to commemorate Saint Joseph.

The next information will be taken from Wikipedia.
"Formerly, much time would be spent by the Casal faller preparing the ninots (Valencian for puppets or dolls). During the four days leading up to 19 March, each group takes itsninot out for a grand parade, and then mounts it, each on its own elaborate firecracker-filled cardboard and paper-mâché artistic monument in a street of the given neighbourhood. This whole assembly is a falla.

The ninots and their falles are constructed according to an agreed upon theme that has traditionally been, and continues to be, a satirical jab at anything or anyone who draws the attention of the critical eyes of the falleros—the celebrants themselves. In modern times, the whole two week long festival has spawned a huge local industry, to the point that an entire suburban area has been designated the City of Falles – Ciutat fallera. Here, crews of artists and artisans, sculptors, painters, and many others all spend months producing elaborate constructions of paper and wax, wood and styrofoam tableaux towering up to five stories, composed of fanciful figures in outrageous poses arranged in gravity-defying architecture. Each of them is produced at the direction of one of the many individual neighbourhood Casals fallers who vie with each other to attract the best artists, and then to create the most outrageous monument to their target." 

La Cremà
On the final night of Falles, around midnight on March 19, these falles are burnt as huge bonfires. This is known as the cremà (the burning), the climax of the whole event, and the reason why the constructions are called falles ("torches"). Traditionally, the falla in thePlaça de l'Ajuntament is burned last.
Many neighbourhoods have a falla infantil (a children's falla, smaller and without satirical themes), which is held a few metres away from the main one. This is burnt first, at 10:00 pm. The main neighbourhood falles are burnt closer to midnight; the burning of the falles in the city centre often starts later. For example, in 2005, the fire brigade delayed the burning of the Egyptian funeral falla in Carrer del Convent de Jerusalem until 1:30 am, when they were sure all safety concerns were addressed.

Each falla is laden with fireworks which are lit first. The construction itself is lit either after or during the explosion of these fireworks.Falles burn quite quickly, and the heat given off is felt by all around. The heat from the larger ones often drives the crowd back a couple of metres, even though they are already behind barriers that the fire brigade has set several metres from the construction. In narrower streets, the heat scorches the surrounding buildings, and the firemen douse the façades, window blinds, street signs, etc. with their hoses to stop them catching fire or melting, from the beginning of the cremà until it cools down after several minutes.

Away from the falles, people frolic in the streets, the whole city resembling an open-air dance party, except that instead of music there is the incessant (and occasionally deafening) sound of people throwing fireworks around randomly. There are stalls selling products such as the typical fried snacks porresxurros and bunyols, as well as roasted chestnuts or trinkets.

The five days and nights of Falles are a continuous party. There are a multitude of processions: historical, religious, and comedic. Crowds in the restaurants spill out into the streets. Explosions can be heard all day long and sporadically through the night. Foreigners may be surprised to see everyone from small children to elderly gentlemen throwing fireworks and noisemakers in the streets, which are littered with pyrotechnical debris. The timing of the events is fixed and they fall on the same date every year.

During Falles, many people wear their casal faller dress in regional and historical costumes from different eras of Valencia's history

I went to Valencia with my mother in 2009 and arrived the week following Falles. I had no clue that this even existed. I felt we had missed out on it. We went to the Falles museum where they save one ninot from the fire and place it into the museum. I really enjoyed it as the ninots are like nothing I had ever seen. The artistry of capturing the expressions was amazing. There were so many funny ones. I enjoyed seeing them but it was only a small taste of the festival so I would really like to attend it one year.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Movie Friday

This morning after I got home from work. I relaxed and watched Intouchables for the second time. I really enjoy this film. I like how the characters interact. The film is about a man who becomes paralyzed after an accident and how he comes to have a care giver who can make him laugh and enjoy life.  The movie is French and one of my favourite foreign films. I am always looking for new movies that peek my interest but this one I have been wanting to re-watch for a while so I am glad I got to enjoy it again today.

The second movie I watched today was 12 Years a Slave. I have been waiting for this film to come out ever since I watched an interview with the Director Steve McQueen at TIFF. I thought the film was scheduled to come out on October 18th so was looking forward to seeing it then but that date was only a limited release and I was able to see it today. The film is about a free man who is kidnapped and sold into slavery where he must survive with the hopes of returning to his old life. I have the ebook for this novel but I have yet to start reading it. Have been a bit distracted playing pokemon. Oops. I really enjoyed the film. Definitely worth a see. It was very sad but it was so honest.

Next on my watch list is Ender's Game. Probably go see that on Tuesday.