Friday, August 7, 2009

Hello, Goodbye

This post chronicling the transitional period of our stay in Buenos Aires is in honor of one of the more underrated Beatles songs ever (if I were writing a music/pop culture blog, I would definitely do the following two Beatles-related things: first, dedicate an entire post (or two) to the subject of the most underrated and overrated Beatles songs, with tracks such as "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away", "Dear Prudence", "I'm Only Sleeping", "Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except Me and My Monkey" , or "I've Got a Feeling" counting for the former, and "Yellow Submarine", "Ob-la-di Ob-la-da" and even "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" finding themselves in the latter, but what do you all think? I know it's hard to generally define overrated/underrated in terms of songs, but it would be a fun debate. Secondly, I would do a series of posts all using titles from Beatles songs. Honestly, with my relatively low volume of output and the scope of emotions their oeuvre covers, I could name every single one of my posts after a Beatles song, but that would get boring, kind of like this tangent...) since there have been a few new developments in Casa Cochabamba and our lives in general. So, without further ado:

Hello, a bed all to myself. One of the great compromises I make in the name of love is sharing a bed. If I had my way, I would be able to spread myself out as much as possible with as many pillows as are necessary to assure my comfort. The saying going "let sleeping dogs lie", but for me it would be "let a sleeping Josh sprawl out in his bed like a butterflied chorizo , no matter what crazy position that may be". That doesn't mean that you're likely to find me in some strange side-show contortion when I sleep alone, but I subconsciously sleep better knowing that I need not worry about bumping into my bedfellow. In short, I'm happy when my only confines are the size of the bed. This stipulation even limits how much I can enjoy the instances in which Manzi jumps into bed, for she holds down the territory around my feet, an area that is by no means without movement.

Goodbye, Julia, or, more appropriately, "See you later, Julia". My lovely lady departed South America for the first time in ten months when she boarded a plane destined for New York City Thursday afternoon. To your right you can see Julia was deep in thought over how she could not wait any longer for a cinnamon-raisin bagel with a heaping portion of soy-cream cheese from Bagel Barn. These looks became more and more frequent as she approached her date of departure, so part of me is really glad I don't have to look at them for a while. She will be gone until the 23rd of August, just more than 2 weeks in total, and it was obviously sad to see her go but not too bad since time will fly down here as usual and she'll be back before I know it. And even though I will enjoy my new found excess of space in bed, I will miss my roommate who all too often hogs the blanket and has a penchant for swiping my pillow if she goes to bed before I do. Clearly, she's got to be pretty special if despite all these negatives I still hang onto her. It also doesn't hurt that when she gets back I will be able to say...

Hello, brand-new MACBOOK PRO!!! That's right, Julia will be bringing me back a new toy. And moments after welcoming Julia back after her 17 day absence, I will rive through her luggage to find my new model of asthetic and technological excellence - dare I say perfection. I am excited if for no other reason than I will be in the possession of a computer that can operate when it's not plugged in to the closest power outlet. As if I needed any more reason to cross off the days on my calendar until Julia returns. I would write more about how excited I am to have this new computer, and all the cool things I will do with it, but I imagine it would quite boring and somewhat off-putting and I'm not trying to decrease our readership...but then again, check out how long this post is!

Goodbye, Powerbook G4.
A piece of my charger, which at this point was taped to the port just so that it could actually bring electricity to my computer, broke off inside the port (I'm really not sure if that's the right word, but work with me). The result? No more aluminum covered 12" Powerbook G4, a wonderful piece of machinery.
The origin story of this warrior is well known to many, so the very fact that she was ever in my hands was a fluke in itself, an occasion in which Fortuna's Wheel finally bequeathed a bit of luck to me. In all, she lasted me 4-plus years, lived on three continents, helped me get through college, and, last but certainly not least, allowed me to watch copius amounts of Lost online until I caught up to the present (in our time, not the wormhole infested timeline that, along with the overarching themes of redemption, reason, faith, good, and evil, is currently driving Lost's narrative - only 6 more months until the last season starts, apparently I'm looking forward to it). Technically, she's the second computer I've ever owned, but I really consider her the first; for all intents and purposes, I merely got a free upgrade on my first Powerbook, not a new computer all together.
Saying goodbye may be a big premature, since Ulises plans on investigating whether or not he can bring her back to life. But I'm moving on, as evidenced by the previous "Hello", so farewell fair computer, thanks for the memories.
My first, my last, my everything...

Hello, more disposable income.
Although I may be jinxing myself/ourselves by making this declaration, especially since Julia is missing 2.5 weeks of work, but overall we are making more money than ever before. We've each picked up more hours and I will start doing some part-time work for a friend in the states in which I will make...(drumroll please)... US Dollars. This gig is also very temporary, so it won't permit us to throw caution to the wind and live large, but it also won't serve as the finger in the dike that saves us from financially drowning. As it is we're trying save as much as possible for traveling once our time here ends, but for the time being, while we're here, we don't need to be as frugal as we were before without risking the emergency escape from Argentina due to a lack of funds. So if you were counting on us making a bankruptcy induced return back to the United States, that would happen for at least a few more months.

Goodbye, disposable free time.
Long gone are the days of simply waking up at 7:00 AM, working for an hour and a half, coming home and having the rest of the day to do whatever we please. Granted, these days have not existed since February, but you know what I mean: our schedules are filling up more and more as we speak. True, I do not work 40-hour weeks like many of our readers, but I'm getting close when factoring in all of my various worklike activities, which are: my (repeated) commutes (at least 1 hour a day), lesson planning (depending on the number of classes and their nature, we'll say about 45 minutes on average), the time I dedicate to studying for the LSATS (at least 45 minutes a day, sometimes hours if I'm taking a practice test/multiple sections), and the extra 10 hours of work (from home) I will be starting this week puts me right around 40 hours. Plus, unlike many others with 9-5's, I can't compartmentalize work time and free time with the same amount of ease since most of it is very similar in appearance and location (read: me, sitting at the dining room table, looking at a computer screen or at a book) - I don't get to go to work and then come home from work once it's over. Just the opposite, most of the "work" I do is not at work at all. Throw in Frisbee and a cheeky puppy and the former surplus of freetime I once had has dwindled to mere moments in comparison. I'm not complaining, no sir, I just need to adjust to this more "normal" life and better manage my time.

Hello, Manzi (and Uncle Brian)!

Just looking for an excuse to include of our incredibly cute but equally maddening pup. Sadly, Brian just can't measure of to Manzi's puppy cuteness, but Brian does have a lot going for him: he's a human, he's a lawyer, and he's house trained. None of these traits apply to Manzi.

Goodbye, Gripe A:
After being held hostage by the ruthless and unrelenting grip of the gripe, Buenos Aires has finally returned to normal. Schools are back in session for the first time in a month -- the last two weeks of July are always vacation but they cancelled school for the two previous weeks, too -- which means I now when I'm out on Cochabamba at 8:00 AM there are school children and their parents joining me. Public transport, especially the subte, are enjoying their normally suffocating number of passangers, thanks to the aforementioned reopening of schools and also the end of "sick-leaves" for at-risk populations (old, pregnant, with young children, etc). I still can't figure out of the government was drumming up all of this hysteria in order to distact the public from their crushing defeat in the most recent elections, if they had under-reported the situation beforehand as to prevent said crushing defeat from coming to fruition, or if the government was honest in its response to a problem that really flared up directly after the elections took place. Either way, it's nice to have the city back to normal, for now.

Hello, Goodbye to our numerous visitors over the past few weeks (and to this post).
Besides bringing us loads of uncharacteristically warm weather, the last month has brought us a slew of wonderful visitors. First off, we enjoyed the wonderful company of Mr. Joe Barrett, a lone ranger hailing from the Shire who came to Argentina in search of good meat, fine wine, and buena onda. His friends joked with him that they were afraid he would like it so much down here that he wouldn't return home. Based on what I saw from his 5 days in Buenos Aires, I'm surprised to see he made it back to the States. Before our South American reunion it had been a long time since Joe and I had spent such a considerable amount of time together, and I'm genuinely glad we could reconnect 5,000 miles away from home. Next up was one repeat offender, Miss Alex "Goes to PerĂº" Behles, along with her friend Lindsay, a fellow GW alumnus, Alex's boyfriend Trevor, our friend and also a GW graduate, his friend from home Kevin, and finally Trevor's friend Charlie who, like Trevor, is a member of Teach for America in Oakland (goooooooo). We treated these rogues to two asados in Casa Cochabamba, the latter installment being a bit more intimate and a lot more...blurry. As it was with Joe, it's very cool to be able to hang out with people you know from one place in an entirely different context, and I only hope all these people will be as welcoming when we crash their cities once we're back up north.

Our best unintentional impersonation of Abbey Road, captured by Alex.

One last Goodbye to the tree lived on our patio. Due to it's excessive weight and overly explorative roots, both of which were to the detriment of our neighbors below, Washington removed our tree. Now we have kitchen splashed by more sunlight, but it's at the expense of our prepetual housemate, the tree on the patio.

1 comment:

Reed said...

For what it's worth, Dear Prudence is THE Beatles jam. But you left out "Happiness is a Warm Gun."

I greatly look forward to your new acquisition. We can then have our "lending" partay.