Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Can I taste that for you?...and other RANDOM TUESDAY THOUGHTS

Does this describe a puppy or a baby?

She keeps her people up at night.
She makes cute sounds and sometimes yelps loudly.
She often needs comforting.
She is fun and cuddly.
She is soft.
She puts everything in their mouth.
She crawls around on the ground.
She depends on us for food and often the food looks revolting.
She is fun to play with.
She gets attention from complete strangers.
She has her own small bed.
She is always happy to see us.
She is the favorite subject matter for photographs.
She chews on our furniture and shoes.
She goes everywhere we go.
She is entertained by small things.
She is perfectly content to play in the yard with nothing but a big stick.
I feel guilty when I’m not with her.

Aussie Weirdness of the week: I went to a small cafĂ© and ordered a sandwich that I saw in the deli case. The woman behind the counter asked, “Do you want me to taste it for you?” I was very confused by this and asked her to repeat herself. “Do you want me to taste it for you?” she said again.
I stood silently as I tried to process her words. Would she politely grab a bit of the sandwich or just have a go at a large bite?
Certainly I had missed the real context and because I was curious and almost daring her to take a bite out of my sandwich, I found myself nodding and saying, “Yes, absolutely, please do.”
I watched intently as she pulled my sandwich out of the deli case and whisked it away to the back room. Hmmmmm. What sneaky business was going on?
She came back out without my sandwich and proceeded to wait on other customers. I stood at the deli case staring intently at the open doorframe that lead to the back room where my sandwich had disappeared. About 5 minutes later, the counter lady ventured back into the mystery room and reappeared with my sandwich. It was beautiful, all brown and TOASTED.

More on Aussie pronunciation:
I’ve taken to saying to-mah-to for tomato and wah-ter for water. It saves me having to repeat myself.
I was in a patient’s room that seemed to lack power outlets. I asked the nursing staff for the outlet and I got a blank stare. Finally someone came in to help me and when I showed her the cord, she said, “Oh, you want a power point.” Go figure. I’m still learning.
The Aussie pronunciation of the letter H is “HAYtch”.

My coworker Paige and I bought a lottery ticket together. The lotto here is at a record 100 million dollars. Now we are fantasizing about all the things we are going to do with the money. I think we would make very good rich people. We’ll know tonight. Wish us luck.

Madden has 5 teeth now. They are in no particular order. There are 2 on top but nowhere near each other and there are three teeth spaced out across the bottom of her mouth. Every time one comes in, it is a couple days of torture for her and for us. She is quite miserable and whines and cries and sometimes even spikes a fever. So we are counting…5 down, only 15 more teeth to go…

Tomkat update: They arrived in Melbourne today but have chosen to live at the penthouse above the casino building rather than at the mansion next to us. Bad choice if you ask me. Apparently the penthouse is owned by a fellow scientologist though. They still aren’t very far from us but unfortunately for Madden and Suri; they aren’t two doors down like we planned.

Let’s talk about Grand Forks, North Dakota for a moment. Why, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you. I’ve been thinking about it lately. You see, it’s winter here which means just like the Midwest of the US, it’s dark from 4:45 PM until 8:00 AM. But that’s where the comparison stops. You see, I used to travel a lot with my job and they always sent me to exciting destinations like Duluth, MN, Rapid City, SD, Mason City, IA, and good old Grand Forks, ND. They sent me to Grand Forks A LOT in the winter – the cold, frigid, bleak, icey, people-die-out-there-kind-of-weather-conditions, winter. And what’s more is that I always got stuck there. Being snowed in and missing those little teeny tiny planes home plagued me. I was there one time in late December and I thought I’d have to stay for Christmas. Nothing was flying out. It was 30 degrees below zero and my rental car elicited a high pitched screech every time it started. I had no scraper and would sit in my car with the heater on full blast for 20 minutes just to clear the ICE off the windscreen. As I drove down the road I remember thinking that choosing to live there must be pure insanity.

That brings me back to Melbourne – you see, people around me have been complaining about the cold. People, its winter and the grass is green! There are flowers blooming and leaves are still hanging from trees. We can stand outside for an hour without a coat and have zero risk of hypothermia. No one owns a mad bomber hat or ugly orange hunting gloves three sizes too big. Sorel boots have no market here.

This is Australia. People wear cute coats one layer thicker than a spring trench. My hat doesn't even cover my ears and I’ve never seen anyone wearing mittens. Let's save the complaining for the 114 degree heat in the summer when it's actually justified. This stuff just isn't really winter.

This morning I was running very late and had no time to shower, let alone eat breakfast. As I darted out the door, Eric handed me a bag and said it was breakfast for the road. In it was a banana and some mango juice. Since he had nothing to put the mango juice into that wouldn’t spill, he made use of one of Madden’s sippy cups. It was brilliant. It may have looked bizarre to anyone driving close to me, but I definitely feel that sipping mango juice out of brightly colored baby sippy cup enhanced my morning mood.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Random Tuesday Thoughts

I didn’t write a random Tuesday blog last week. I’m saying it was a bye week and I was taking a break. The truth is that we were all sick again. This THING has a hold on us and keeps circulating. Eric had the flu and I had a sinus infection again. Whatever this THING is, it just keeps going round and round and mutating and re-infecting us all again and again. ARGGHHH.

Over the last decade we have witnessed all our friends going through the same thing. They have kids. The kids go to daycare. The kids get sick. Our friends get sick. And so on and so on. Events were cancelled, moved, or forgotten due to all this sickness that kept going around. It was annoying. Back then, I actually believed it was because no one was washing their hands on a regular basis. If only they were a bit more hygienic, they would all maintain their health.
I was stupid. I’m sorry. For what it’s worth, I don’t believe that anymore.

No sign of TomKat. We’ve taken to walking by the place several times a day. There is a 12 foot wall around the place and the gates are always closed. The most action we spotted was a view of an open gate and cleaners and catering company trucks in the circle drive. We will continue our nightly walks by their place. After all, the friendship between Madden and Suri is predestined.

3 year olds and pink permanent marker shouldn’t come in contact. At this point, I do believe the only solution for the linen covered chair in our apartment is re-upholstery.

Pop Quiz –
1. What is the capital city of Australia?
2. Which is bigger – the US or AU?
3. How many states does AU have?
4. What is the population of AU compared to the US?

I am powerless to stop you. Oh, you superb TV shows on DVD, how I love your commercial free ways. I hum your catchy theme songs, celebrate your characters, and can’t resist the way you woo me with your 37 minute episodes. But you are smart. You are well aware that it’s more than 37 minutes when I am unable to tear myself away from your five episodes DVD. Oh, how I marvel at your marketing genius. You have me and I am powerless.
How did you do it Sopranos? How could I have become sympathetic to a bunch of New York mobsters?
And then there was you, oh quirky Six Feet Under. I loved you for your writing, and your issues, and your flawed characters. We cried together – don’t you remember that?
Oh, my dear West Wing, I think I miss you the most. How could you end? How could you leave me there with Jimmy Santos as president and no follow up? I miss you but I shall never forget how you kept me company during my entire pregnancy. You were there for me.

And now, I’d like to introduce my new love and addiction.
I saw your first two episodes and thought I could resist your pull. But then I saw your third show and I knew I must have you. You are mine Entourage. All mine.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Random Tuesday Thoughts

The Random Tuesday Blog is a stolen idea from Jenni at Oscarelli blog. She stole it from someone else and so on and so on. So, here's my data dump for the week...It's random, it's unrelated, it is a snapshot of what is going through my head...

I've been dreaming a lot lately. Weird stuff like Eric wearing an Elvis suit and performing stunt water skiing; tragic material such as setting Madden down on the street and realizing she'd crawled away into traffic; panicky things such as surgeries gone awry and fully sedated patients leaping off surgical tables. Mostly I just feel robbed of sleep and a bit frightened to go to bed at night for what may enter my brain.

I use physics everyday in my job. Ye old V=IR equation. When I was learning that WAY back in high school, I seriously doubted I would EVER use that information again.

Little things that I currently miss from home (besides people) include:

Aquafresh toothpaste
Heath bars
The Mall of America (specifically Nordstroms)
Amazon.com with free shipping
24 hour grocery stores
24 hour pharmacies
Being served water with ice when you sit down at a restaurant
Internet cafes
Uncongested roadways
Shops that are open past 5pm
Walking down Summit
Cheaper petrol
Cheese popcorn
Springtime in MN
Punch Pizza
Lake Superior and the north shore

Little things that I love about here include:

Aussie Breakfasts
Kind GP's that see me, Madden and Eric on time and give 30 minute appointments
Our gigantic king size bed that is the most comfortable thing I have ever slept in
Delicious treats called lemon slices
Green grass and flowers during wintertime
Gigantic gum trees
Weird looking tree ferns
The bike path along the Yarra
Our proximity to Tasmania
The phrase "Good On Ya"
The little antique row houses all over town

Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes are coming to Melbourne. Specifically, they are going to be our neighbors. Katie is apparently filming a movie in Melbourne and we heard from others in our building that the Cruise-Holmes combo will be residing in the huge complex at the end of our block. That's TWO Doors down from us.
I heard the news in the morning and by that evening I had fabricated an entire imaginary life in which Eric and I and Tom and Katie together with Madden and Suri, were hanging out by their pool and jetting off to the Gold Coast for holidays together. Eric and I would resist the pressure to become Scientologists, but Tom and Katie would find us so fun and witty that we would all remain lifelong friends. Suri would become face book friends with Madden and they would see each other each summer at camp.

Ad of the Month

I don't think I will ever understand the commercials they play on TV over here.
This one is actually British, but it gets a lot of airtime here in Melbourne.

The ad is for chocolate.

Will someone PLEASE tell me how this sells chocolate?

Monday, June 1, 2009


8 months old today. Happy Day little fun one.