Wednesday, January 21, 2009


So besides loving destination NYE (which I still will post about!!) I also adore destination birthdays. And being that my birthday is four days after Vday if I can be gone then too it is a major bonus.

Of course now that I am a proud owner and user of a Passport I am itching to get some more stamps.

One idea I had was to go to a week long yoga retreat in Costa Rica. All inclusive vegetarian meals and two classes a day. Problem was that it was two grand before airfare. Ouch.

Today I received an email with London airfare sales. Total round trip with two free nights in a hotel for five hundred bucks. This I could do in more of a long weekend, four or five nights.

Then on a whim I checked the yoga retreat and they are having a recession special - it is down to nineteen hundred bucks WITH the airfare.

I'm torn. Right now I'm leaning toward London because it is shorter and cheaper. But on the other hand Costa Rica is warm and sunny this time of year. And yoga is good for you.

Decisions, decisions.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

soooo cold

Okay, so this morning I woke up to no heat.


Second time this week, maybe the fifth or sixth time since I've been here. Always on the really cold days. And when there is no heat there is no hot water either, so I can't even warm up in the shower.

Aren't there laws about this???

During the week my saving grace has been this amazing invention, Ojon Rub-Out Dry Cleanser.

This stuff is AMAZING. Sadly my hair gets visibly greasy in a mere 24 hours. Thus the need to wash my hair daily. Which is torture in a cold shower when my apartment has no heat. But with this product a mere spray, rub, and brush later my hair looks fantastic. Good as new. And fullness and body?? Gorgeous.

Methinks with curly or already too-full hair this might be a bit much, but if you have those problems do you really have to wash your hair everyday anyway?

Anyhoo, this stuff rocks my world. So much that if you are getting gifts from me this year you already know it will be one of those wrapped items.

Now if my heat would be just as reliable as this hair product...

Friday, January 16, 2009

what to do when it is cloudy

Day two in the canaries we woke up to overcast skies somewhere just shy of noon. After a short walk we were able to find a place that served English breakfast (baked beans anyone?) and hit the beach.

It was cold without sun.

Luckily that's when TJ and Chris showed up. TJ is a friend of Kzoo Jen's from Kellogg and Chris is his boyfriend. They had already been in the islands for a week, and wanted to head up to the coast to see the cliffs. We were game, so we headed up to Los Gigantes.

Do you see that spec just a little bit left and below the first cliff? That's an entire pirate ship. (or what looked like one.) The cliffs were big indeed. Driving to them was reminiscent of driving highway 1 in California, and Kzoo Jen felt a little bubbly in the tummy so we headed next for some soda. Warm soda of course, since they don't really try hard to chill beverages on Tenerife.

Los Gigantes itself was nestled in the valley of some cliffs, complete with tiny winding one way roads that snaked over and around each other all the way to the water.

That would be an unsuspecting TJ in the bottom left corner.

The next day was overcast as well, so we all spent the most of our time eating, sleeping, and drinking the night away. We pretty much spent the most of our time in an Irish pub.
Yes, I know. We travelled across the world and I still ended up in an Irish pub. But you don't understand!!! There was a live band!! And even ten year old kids were dancing on the tables!! Just look at that crowd!

We danced with the Irish, the English, and even some locals. Oh, and I suppose it was a bonus everyone automatically spoke our language. Didn't notice that at the time.

We also got to help celebrate TJ's birthday, which was the 30th. Here is a picture of TJ and Chris in front of the birthday dessert feast that Chris put together to celebrate. Note everything is chocolate. Joy!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

world traveller

The rest of the holiday in Dtown was good if not downright uneventful. Exchanged some gifts, ate some food, watched children run around. For fun I handed my iphone to my five-year-old nephew who then took a few pics....

And then off to the Canary Islands with Kzoo Jen!! We saw each other briefly at DTW and then traveled our separate airlines to Madrid, Spain. We flew into Tenerife without incident, and were able to navigate the bus system to make it from the north to the south part of the island without too much pain.

Although I did learn that a handy translator on the iphone is neat, but if you don't understand answers to your questions you kind of are screwed anyway. Mental note - before traveling to another foreign speaking country I am reviewing my number translations. Anything in Spanish over ten just confused me.

Our first night on the town of Las Playas de Americas I discovered something amazing. Callers were paid a euro for each person they were able to solicit into coming into a bar, and we were given free shots and two for one drinks for being that new customer.

Free shots people!!

Okay, they weren't quite an ounce and most of the time they were more like a juice drink, but free booze is free booze.

Which can have an unfortunate side effect. On our way out of the second to last bar of the evening some guys were playing this punching bag game. It was one of those teardrop shaped bags, and the challenge was to hit it as hard as you could and find out how forceful your blow was.

These gents encouraged myself and Kzoo Jen to give it a whirl. I stood in front of the game, drew back my hand, and threw all my weight into my blow.

Unfortunately the floor was wet beneath me. And I have no idea how to throw a punch. My feet flew out from underneath me and I fell forward.

On my face.

Yeah, not kidding. My face hit first, hands never had a chance to catch up.

My first worry? My veneers!! I just got the damn things! Luckily they seemed secure. But then my lip swelled up. Because that is sexy. Oh yeah.

But don't worry, that didn't spoil my fun. We went to another bar so I could get a nice cold beer to ice my lip. Who says I don't know anything about first aid??

Sunday, January 11, 2009

happy holidays! (much belated)

My holidays were just great, thank you very much!

Yeah, it has taken me a week to get around to blogging. Proof positive that it still rates high on my list, I'm doing this but I haven't gotten around to unpacking yet.

Thus you get a glimpse into how my priorities are structured.

Christmas itself was a lot of fun. For me. My sister and brother in law were hella sick. Katie had a super painful sinus infection and Scho had a dry hacking cough. They were real troopers though; they were amazing hosts in spite of their pain.

We did our second annual trip to Sidetracks in Ypsi for the FANTASTIC beer battered pickles. (mmmmmm) And of course we played a little Rock Band. Hell, feeling a little better they let me teach them some yoga on Christmas morning.

Katie really did go above and beyond. On Christmas Eve day we wanted to go into A2 for some Indian food but her head was throbbing, so she allowed me to give her on of my post-op vicodin. By the time we got to the restaurant the pain had gone down a bit, so she acquiesced to a second pill.

She didn't eat very much of the buffet though, complaining of a slight upset stomach. She mentioned that she thought it might be the drugs. Which I can understand, after my abdominal wall reconstruction both vicodin and percoset made me nauseous.

Sis powered through the meal, and we decided to check out the brand spanking new Whole Foods that just opened on the west side of Ann Arbor. We needed to eat something that night, and I wanted to pick up some healthy snacks for my impending travels.

Happily the parking lot was not too full, and we ventured into the world of overpriced healthy stuff. Sweet bounty of all things wholesome and natural, we slowly browsed the aisles of sweet, sweet nutrition packed opulence. And joy of joys, we found Katie's favorite beer in stock in the back of the restaurant! We had been searching for this Bell's seasonal beer in the pink box for the past 24 hours, to no avail. Sold out everywhere else, we celebrated our bounty.

Then we moved towards the prepared foods section to select our dinner. Sis then turned to me and said,

"I think I'm going to throw up"

Well we immediately pinpointed an employee and asked the location of the restrooms. Front of store. With a sense of urgency belying our calm, we started to move past the open buffets.

Then it happened. Katie slowed down, and cupped her mouth with her hands. She held it together for a second, a breath. Then her stomach contracted and liquid shot out from between her fingers, jet propelled in all directions.

At this point she had to drop her hands as she heaved again, albeit just straight down - to minimize the radius of expulsion.

You would think we would have caused a stir. But no. It was over in less than ten seconds. One employee did witness the last relief and handed her his towel. She then was able to make a break for the bathroom. I stood there with the employee for a minute, wondering if I should baby-sit the mess until it got cleaned up. Then I decided my sister was more important and joined her in the front of the store.

We didn't end up buying the beer. Or any dinner. We can however sleep easy now knowing that she will never have a problem with addiction to painkillers.

More about the holidays to come...