Well…. Materials is over with. Everyone agrees it was a complete and utter violation. Enough said. I won’t go into details because children might read this.
IN other news, I saw the house today. It’s really really good. No more roommate, no more caf food, no more quiet hours, no more residence manager. Enormous backyard too. Apparently we’re going to barbecue all year long, and why not? When it’s snowing, the grill will warm you up. Save on hydro.
Don’t really have much to say, actually… so I guess I’ll post something I’ve written… please remember, this was grade 10….
This is a piece I wrote for fun about first coming to the Philippines at age 15 . It is interesting to note that now I am comfortable in the 30 degree heat, have many close Filipino friends, and coexist peacefully with cockroaches, snakes, large spiders, and wasps.
I sat in the economy class seat, studying the pattern of scratches on the folded tray, waiting for the seatbelt sign to turn off. A muffled meowing could be heard from under my seat, and I bent double trying to pet my cat while not slicing myself in half on the seatbelt. It was awkward, but worth it when I slid my hand inside the carrying case and had it smashed by a small head that was beating itself on the roof of the carrying case.
‘There we are, Carman, almost done. You’ll be able to get out soon. You’ve been such a good girl, there now, don’t yell, it’s almost over.’ She stopped jumping up and down for a moment, and then started up again, jamming one of my fingers painfully. I slowly withdrew my hand. Putting your hand in the cage of a cat that has just been on an intercontinental flight is not a good idea.
Finally, there was a little din, and the unintelligible stewardess informed us of something that was no doubt dreadfully important. I unbuckled myself, and scrabbled around under my seat for my shoes. When I tried to put them on , I realized my feet had swelled considerably; my slightly-over-large Rockports would only fit if all the laces were undone, and my toes were still a little squished. Standing up was both a relief and agony. My rear was definitely grateful for the respite, but knees should not make quite so much noise.
I quickly gathered all my detritus together; that which was disposable I shoved in the little flap where they keep the tacky safety card (if we hit the water at 300 mph, please remember your fluorescent life jacket, it makes the bodies ever so much easier to find). That which wasn’t I was put in my backpack. I shrugged it on, then bent over to pick up the navy blue soft-sided cat carrier. It only jerked a little. Carman was getting tired from jumping and I think she was still drowsy from the quarter Gravol Mom had fed her in Vancouver, and again at Narita. My parents and I struggled out into the stream of passengers slowly but hastily exiting the plane. Everyone had the same dead look on their face, an aftereffect of the unreality of air travel and the irritating and hypnotic Cathay Pacific incidental music.
Still somewhat chilled from the air-conditioning, when I stepped out of the plane the tropical heat hit me physically. It was dreadful, the cloying mugginess combined with the stench of rotting vegetation and mildew to give the feeling of a place that was altogether too alive. I was certain I could hear the buzzing of malarial mosquitoes and see fungal spores floating in air. I was used to the comparatively dead sub arctic. The most alive places in the world are swamps, simply teaming with life. I prefer sterile. Dead. The effect this life had on me was roughly equivalent to getting hit in the face with a handful of mealworms while on the last stretch of a marathon; exceedingly unpleasant, but nothing for it but to press on.
Customs was uneventful, but slow, and further supports Dad’s hypothesis that female clerks are slower than male ones. The female ones show some interest occasionally, while the male ones simply want to get you through as fast as possible so they can get a cup of coffee.
After customs, we went to get the luggage, and I suffered a shock when I went to the bathroom. There were people standing in it. With uniforms. They hustled me into a stall, and when I was done, they turned the tap on for me, squeezed the soap, and handed me a towel. I admit I am not at my best when I get off a plane, but I do not need men in yellow coveralls to assist me with toiletries. They looked at me expectantly when I was leaving. I looked back. One made a small motion with his hand, and I had to explain that I had no money. At first, having heard horror stories about the police in the airports of developing countries, I was afraid they were going to attempt to take money forcefully, but they simply smiled politely and waved me out of the vomit-green restroom.