Well, the first day of Camp NaNoWriMo July 2013 is over, and I’ve managed to get 1,508 words written. I even increased my word count goal for Here and There to 45,000 from 35,000; and the goal for each day is to get 1,452 words written. So I reached today’s daily goal! Yay Me! Got started (and fairly well) on “First Day”; I’m about halfway through Ryuu’s part of that story.
First of all, welcome, everyone, to the new site for tag’s Haven. I’d like to thank you all for following me here. Please, feel free to subscribe to my posts – the link is in the sidebar, just under my recent posts.
For those who are new and have followed a link here, Be Welcome! This is the blog where I talk about my life in general, moan and vent about the weather, and pre-publish my fanfic to get comments on it in order to improve it further before it goes to FFNet and tag’s Library for the wide world to see. 😉 (If you want to see the fanfic I’ve put up, links to all of it are available through the Fanfic page, as well as a bit of a summary.)
Over the next little while I’m going to be wandering around the ‘Net, changing the URLs of my blog everywhere I’ve put it up. But there is news, for anyone interested… see below. (Also, question re fic. Sorry, RK fans, not quite ready for updates yet, but have been reviewing and doing a bit more writing….)
If you’re interested in finding out about Imber’s so-called “Great Adventure” (and how scared I was), feel free to read on. Telling it helps exorcise the fear – and express delight at the resolution. Included are some details about taking her on the flight.
Lots of changes since my last post.
– We now know what’s wrong with my hand (ref: Ugh. Hand Is A Problem. from April). I’ve got a frayed ligament in the wrist. So splint, zinc tablets, and rest.
– Secondly – remember my absence from LJ last summer, when I had trouble walking and the final diagnosis was nerve damage? Well, guess what happened to me the early morning of June 24th. Same symptoms (except for no physical shakiness) – but it’s not the same diagnosis. I’ve had a brain & spine MRI, an electromyograph (AKA nerve conduction test), a chest x-ray, some blood tests, spent 5 days in hospital getting this done… and no one knows what’s wrong. And it’s not got any better. So as of today I’m back on short-term disability, since there’s no way I could respond with any speed in an emergency (I can’t even attempt running), which is a major part of a security officer’s mandate. *heavy sigh*
– Mitzy, my elderly but still active Burmese inherited from my youngest siblings, was put to sleep due to a major chest and stomach lymphoma (cancer) on July 21. Still miss her. She lived a good life, though; she was 15-1/2.
– And introducing Imber, a now 7-month old kitten adopted from Toronto Animal Services on Aug. 1. She’s a grey and cream tabby who is missing half her right hind leg (pretty sure she was born without it). The userpic attached to this post is of her the morning after I brought her home. (“Imber”, FYI, is Latin for “rain storm”. Her coat looks like a storm cloud….)
As for upcoming news:
– One of my best friends, Loui, is going to be visiting for a week at the end of September, four days of which will be spent in Montreal. I’m really looking forward to it.
– Given I’m likely to have some time on my hands for a while, I’m not only looking at possibly doing a university course or two, but have gone and done the inevitable – I’ve signed up for NaNoWriMo 2008. I’m planning on doing an original SF novel (tentatively entitled Search & Rescue).
Anyway, that’s basically everything from the last few months. *sigh*
(working on keeping my mood up)
Well, there’s another week gone. We now have one more person working with us, so we’re only short one person at work now…
My birthday is in… actually, one week! (Plus 5 hrs. and 40 mins. from the time noted of posting…) My parents will be in town (and my sister is currently in town), so the four of us plus my aunts will be going out to dinner at the Summit Grill (nice, reasonably good/well-priced restaurant that’s close enough to everyone). Then, on Sunday (the 7th) I’ll be getting together with hethos and our group of friends, something that I’m really looking forward to – I haven’t seen most of them since last October, and that’s way too long a time!
The cats are doing well, the family’s doing well (as far as I’m aware) – my brother’s even picked out his house – and I’m feeling reasonably good. (Except I’m ready to shoot my knee – it might make it feel better – but we won’t talk about that.)
Now, I just need to get to work on writing – the beginning of the week wasn’t the best (I got 4 hours of sleep – at most – both Sunday and Monday, so Tuesday I spent pretty much the entire day, between finishing my breakfast at 0815 hrs. and getting dinner around 2140 hrs. sound asleep…), and I haven’t been doing that much since then, either. *sigh* I’m working on it…
And once FFNet lets me log in, I’m going to post the Rurouni Kenshin haiku Wolf and Dragon that I wrote about 8 months ago…
Well, I suppose an Airbus 319 is close enough…
Okay, here we go – the story of my trip from about the time I left you 9 hours ago…
The boarding pass for my flight said Gate 4. Given that last year, the pass said Gate 4B, and it ended up being Gate 4A1 (which is a floor below Gates 1-5 & 4B), at about 1:15 pm (more or less) I checked the gate with Customer Service, who confirmed that it was definitely Gate 4.
About 5 minutes later, an announcement comes over the PA system to say that flight AC 999 from San José to Toronto was leaving from Gate 4A1, as opposed to Gate 4. I had to laugh.
Turns out that we were actually leaving from Gate 4A3, but since that’s just across a small room from 4A1, the only problem were the crowds (Gate 4A1 was actually a Taca flight going to Guatemala, and Gate 4A2 was the Lacsa flight going San Salvador-Toronto).
Spent the 25-30 minutes waiting for my particular boarding call chatting to a man who was on my flight; he’d been in Costa Rica for 9 days, mostly on business that had involved also going to Belize and Guatemala. We had a pleasant conversation.
Then, when I got into my seat, I was seated next to an older couple who’d been on vacation. We got to talking about our trips, a bit of where we’d gone (they’d visited Arenal – one of Costa Rica’s active volcanoes – and actually had a clear view of the top the first morning they were there), and then got a surprise.
Turns out that they live about only two blocks south and six to eight blocks east of me!
We definitely had some turbulence, both taking off (a bit, not nearly as much as we did landing in CR) and during the flight, but it didn’t really bother me that much. (Experienced flyer here…) The flight was fairly enjoyable overall, and I actually managed to (*gasp*) get another page and a half of RuroSen written!
When we arrived at Pearson (we reached the gate at 8:45 pm), it turned out that we were actually in the main building of Terminal 1 (as opposed to the temporary building out in the middle of the runway area, which takes a 10-15 shuttle bus ride to reach), at Gate 155. Went through Customs, which took about 10 minutes or so – I was right behind the couple I’d been sitting next to – part of which was used up being entertained by the very excited dog sniffing for drugs (he was bouncing around all over the place!). Got my luggage fairly quickly (my largest suitcase came by just as I reached the carousel, so I managed to grab it quickly, and then it was another rotation and a bit to get my other suitcase), and was through the last checkpoint and out by the taxis just before 9:15 pm. Less than half an hour all told – better than my last two trips from CR! (The first one, one of my suitcases had been grabbed and moved over to the claim area in the back, so I waited at the carousel for about 40 minutes for it to show up before going to report it lost; last year, I ended up having my suitcases checked – random spot check, I suspect – before I could leave the baggage claim area.)
Got home half an hour ago, and after about 30 seconds of staring at me (Dad, you were right on the timing!) I had both cats coming up to me for attention; right now, Mitzy’s on my lap (trying to make sure that I’m not paying too much attention to the computer), and Aspen is stretched out over the back of my chair (her favourite place to be when I’m sitting there).
Well, I’m tired; going to quickly eat my dinner (the sandwich Mom packed for me), put away a few things, and then go curl up in bed. Off to breakfast/brunch/coffee tomorrow with one aunt, and then the same again with another on Friday (we’re not going all together due to scheduling difficulties), to tell them all the details and show all the pictures… *G*
RuroSen Chapter 3 will be posted tomorrow. RuroBatt/Edge of the Blade Chapter 3.4 will most likely be posted either Friday or Saturday.
This is what is called posting for the sake of posting. Well, mostly, anyway…
Regarding Cats: Mitzy (see entry pic) is an adorable little Burmese cat. And I do mean “adorable”, despite the fact that some of her habits (like trying to lie on my face when I’m attempting to sleep, and sucking on stuffed animals, electric blankets, etc., and licking the sides of the plastic laundry hampers, for example) drive me crazy.
Unfortunately, over the past two or three weeks she has developed yet another habit that drives me nuts.
I’m used to Burmese lying across my shoulders – that was one of Brightspot’s favourite perches, as it happens. And Mitzy generally liked to be lifted up to hang over one shoulder facing behind me. But lately, she’s been climbing onto my shoulders while I’m sitting in my chair, and draping her forepaws and the front part of her torso over my chest, for all the world as if she’s reading what’s on my computer screen. And it’s driving me bonkers! *sigh*
Of course, Mitzy’s bonkers anyway… Sweet-tempered, but definitely “not all there” at times…
As for other things:
First of all, a belated Happy 23rd to my sister Daphne…
Secondly, a belated Happy B-Day to stormheller!
Thirdly… hoping to have another chapter/part of either RuroBatt/Edge of the Blade or RuroSen: A Strange Partnership to post soon…
Fourth – anyone know any good ways to deal with headaches without taking drugs? (Currently having the occasional dose of Tylenol Migraine, since it seems to help, and I can’t have anything with aspirin due to the medication I take for my TMJ/osteoarthritis.) Other than sleep, that is. I’ve had a fairly good winter so far with respect to headaches, but lately… *sigh*
Fifth: I’m leaving for Costa Rica for just over two weeks on Monday the 20th. Will probably upload the occasional update (or maybe more frequent – I like Costa Rica, and I generally tend to relax there)… I’m really looking forward to it. And I may even get slightly warmer weather than last year, given that this year, I’m going down about 2 weeks later… (And will hopefully not come back to a nasty snowstorm here in T.O., given it will be into the second week of March by that time…)
Okay, that’s about it for now…
Talk to you soon!
Today is the first anniversary of Brightspot’s death. I found myself a bit worried about how I was going to handle the day, considering how much I still miss her.
As it happens, it was also Day 3 of Toronto Trek, and I managed to keep busy enough that I didn’t even think about it. I don’t think Brightspot would have objected – in fact, I know that she would have wanted me to be happy, to celebrate my memories of her life. She was like that.
I still miss her dearly. I shall always miss her dearly; she holds a special place in my heart. We grew up together throughout my adolescence and young adulthood, and she was (as the subject states) my confidante as well as my beloved friend and pet. But the fact remains that life does go on, and I have two other wonderful cats who are special to me in their own ways. No other pet can or will take Brightspot’s place in my life – but I have other places for them to occupy.
Kitten, Demon-Child, Sweetheart… I shall always love you and miss you, Brightspot. You are in my heart forever. And I think you would (do, perhaps?) approve of Aspen – she certainly keeps Mitzy on her toes!
Well, I’m working tomorrow – 12 hr. shift. Volunteered for it, since our weekend person is taking the day off (the week before she leaves, actually), and am hoping to get at least a bit of creative work done among the patrols and keeping an eye on the people there for the Fulford debate…
Plus, my knee is buggered all to hell right now. I occasionally have this problem where my kneecap(s) decide(s) it/they don’t like the position they’re supposed to be in, so it/they shift slightly. Not fun for walking places… and even less fun for handling stairs (of which I have to walk up 2-1/2 flights to get to my apartment). Luckily, it’s not too bad at the moment, and having a cane handy is pretty much enough to deal with it.
Had breakfast with my “adopted” aunt this morning – met her after work. Had a nice, long chat (we spent about 2 hrs. there, all told) and she told me all about the 2 weeks in Costa Rica visiting my parents that she just came back from on Monday. She had a great time, and it sounds like it was as relaxing for her as it was for me (which was definitely nice). And apparently the cat toys I picked up in an effort to replace the knitted mouse that Gypsy (the new puppy) took a liking to were a real success – she said all four of the cats loved them. (And given that only two of them played with the knitted mouse, that’s not bad!)
Okay, that’s about it for the random ramblings… got to have something to eat, take my tablets, relax for a bit, and head back to bed so I can head into work for 11 tomorrow morning…
Well, I’ve been in Toronto for just over 48 hours (plane landed at 8:38pm Saturday)… and wouldn’t you know it, 24 hours after I arrived, we were having a snowstorm! *sigh* I’m not yet re-acclimated to this weather!
On the other hand, now that my grandmother is down there and so already knows, I can explain the interesting news that I mentioned last week…
The Goold Zoo v2.3 consists of 7 animals (I’m not counting the contents of the fishpond!): the cats Scrapper, Mouse, Thor, and No Se; and the dogs Quixote (de la Rancho), Sancho (Panza), and Misho. As of last Sunday (the 13th), Mom & Dad are now on Goold Zoo v2.4, with the addition of the female German Shepherd puppy Gypsy.
She’s an absolutely adorable little beast, particularly in the way she and Sancho have taken to each other (almost the moment he met her, Sancho became a proud adopted papa). The cocker spaniels aren’t quite as enthused about her, though by the time I left, Quixote was warming up to her, and the cats don’t understand that when she crouches down and barks at them, she’s asking them to play, but all told she’s fitting in well. (She was actually taken from her mother too early, which we only found out on Tuesday – she was five weeks old and weaned, but only just – but has adapted wonderfully. Sancho has definitely helped with that…)
I’ll be uploading pictures as soon as I get my film developed (about half or more of the two rolls I took is of the Goold Zoo), so you’ll be able to see her…
I’m missing them already (the Zoo v2.4 and my parents, as well as a few people I made friends with down there), but my version of the Goold Zoo (Mitzy and Aspen) were very pleased to see me back. Aspen’s barely stopped purring since I arrived, and Mitzy is doing the whole “not letting you out of my sight” thing – which is very irritating when I’m trying to type… *sigh*
Hope everyone’s having a lovely day, and getting nice pressies from significant others…
Still enjoying my time down here in Costa Rica… Interesting news to post as soon as I get back, and hopefully some lovely photos as well… (Featuring The Goold Zoo v2.4.)
Well, I made it! I am now here in Costa Rica, watching the beginning of a lovely sunset from my parents’ study window, having met the new members of the Goold Zoo v2.3, and greeted the old ones (and got my Scrappy-Cuddles in! He was delighted to see me…).
Won’t be online as often while I’m down here (each call costs, plus time costs), but I will be on every couple of days at the very least.
It’s so lovely and warm here… even Mom & Dad’s place, which is cooler than San José (which was actually 20C when I arrived, at 1:15pm local time, not 27C). Just what I need, I think, to de-stress. And I’ve got two weeks of it… *smiles dreamily*
Hoping to get quite a bit of writing done while I’m here. Last time I was in Costa Rica, I wrote quite a bit of HP fic, including the beginning of Harry Potter and the Sensitive’s Gift. This time, I hope to work on RuroBatt, Eye of the Storm, Harry Potter and the Sensitive’s Gift, another RuroKen story that Kenshin and Saitô have shoved down the connection between my brain and the infamous Plot Bunny Corral, and one of my original stories. But the primary purpose in being here is to enjoy time with my parents, relax, and de-stress, so those have priority.
Well, it’s now less than 24 hours until I leave; just over 26 hours until I’m due to land in San José (which is apparently due to be 27C tomorrow). *bounces excitedly again*
So looking forward to seeing my parents again, and visiting CR for the second time… I really can’t wait to go. And I’m looking forward to the opportunity for Scrappy-Cuddles – I miss Scrapper. Haven’t seen him since Christmas/New Year’s 2002/2003. And Mouse too, of course (though I’ve never really cuddled Mouse…). Not to mention meeting the new cats: Thor and No Se; and the dogs: Don Quixote de la Rancho, Sancho Panza, and Misho…
Now, I’ve just got to get packing…
Bad enough we had ice on top of snow, but to have more snow on top of it? At least the snowfall seems to be easing after about two hours… well, what I can see of it through the security cameras and out the window behind my desk…
Only just over an hour and a half left of my 12 hr. shift – I’m looking forward to going home and spending the rest of the night with the cats.
Had a wonderful Christmas Eve with my aunt at her place, and I got some very nice pressies from everyone. Going to be calling the Newfoundland relatives up tomorrow to offer thanks to my grandmother, and express my wishes that everyone had a good Christmas…
And even being here at work for most of Christmas hasn’t been too bad. It’s always been my habit to spend Christmas afternoon relaxing with any books I manage to get, or writing… and while I haven’t exactly been doing that (while I brought one of the two books I was given to work, I haven’t gotten around to reading it yet – I’ve been pre-occupied with other stuff) it’s still been a fairly relaxing day.
With the exception of the exterior patrols. It’s not fun trying to watch your feet to make sure you don’t slip on the ice that’s on the ground while at the same time trying to check the second and third story windows from outside to make sure they’re all closed… But I managed it, and without any spills! *cheers*
Then got involved in a fascinating email discussion with Vathara (RK, GW, or Stargate fans might know her fics on Fanfiction.Net), going from last night to today, and now I’ve got one of those blasted RK plot bunnies in my corral! (Which is obviously going to have to be expanded – it’s starting to get a wee bit too crowded in there… Wonder if my parents’ place in Costa Rica has the metaphysical space available to provide an expansion?)
Anyway, hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, and here’s looking forward to a Happy New Year! (Quite in advance, yes, but good wishes never hurt…)
Well, looks like Mom found something to cheer me up so I wouldn’t be thinking so much about the fact that it was -36C out last night at work, and even when I left work, it was still -34C (note: This is with wind-chill), and it’s not due to be that much better tonight. Looking forward to tomorrow, which at the moment is due to have a high of 2C.
I was trying to read this out loud to Mitzy and Aspen, and got to #13 before I couldn’t continue for laughing so hard…
Well, I ended up in a much better mood about an hour after my last entry, thanks to some fic. Good fic is a cure for a lot of things.
This is just basically a ramble… I just got home and am in a bit of weird mood.
Aspen-Cuddles are officially a success! She’s looking for them every day or two, and when I picked her up a few minutes ago to give her one of said cuddles, she started purring before I had her against my chest! In other words, she was still in the air! So pleased about that…
Weather… well, what can I say about the weather, other than the fact that it sucks? Although at least it’s actually being consistent: It snowed yesterday, and was originally supposed to be going up to 7 degrees Celsius today. (Okay, just heard that it’s supposed to now eventually go up to 8, not 7…) This morning it was snowing. *shakes head*
And I wonder why I always tend to like to walk in the winter, considering that I hate the cold as much as I hate Toronto’s summer heat? I walked the 25-minute walk to the subway station both yesterday and today, rather than taking the bus (which comes every 5-9 minutes between 7 and 8 am), which is about a 6-minute ride. (See note above concerning weather.) *shakes head again* There are times when I really don’t understand myself…
Well, we’ve had some surprising progress (by accident) between Aspen and Mitzy…
Aspen (although not a lap cat) likes to curl up on the back of my chair, while Mitzy generally curls up either in my lap, or – if I’m on the computer – right next to me, between my hip and the arm of my chair.
However, this evening, Mitzy had claimed the back of the chair before I even sat down in it. So when Aspen came up, wanting to settle up there with me, she found Mitzy already there, and ready to snap at her.
Finally, Mitzy, turned around to face the other side of the room, and ended up leaving just enough space for Aspen to jump up. It took a few minutes of disagreement and snapping at each other, but they’re currently both curled up there. Not really curled up together, just right next to each other, but it’s definitely progress in their relationship.
Edit at 11:55pm: Wow! Mitzy just turned around and laid her head against Aspen’s side! So I change my above statement – now they are curled up together!
Don’t know whether my family remembers how I got Scrapper – our large male cat who (at the time) disdained both laps and being lifted, and who now lives with my parents in Costa Rica and fights with Mouse and the new kittens over possession of their laps – to enjoy being picked up and hugged, but I seem to have worked my magic on Aspen as well.
Aspen, who will not settle on a lap (though she doesn’t mind walking on one to get attention – she just walks across and doesn’t lie down) and who has objected fairly strenuously to being lifted since I got her, was sitting in the kitchen today, near her food bowls, but not paying any attention to them. She was just staring up at me. (Mom, Dad, kids, sound familiar? Like Scrapper looking for the aforementioned Scrappy-Cuddles.) I finally picked her up and cuddled her, and she stayed in my arms being petted and cuddled for a good minute or so, purring, before she decided that enough was enough, and it was time to think about getting down.
Success is mine! *G*
Pick them up, give them a cuddle and a scritch just where they like it, and let them down as soon as they start to try jumping – works every time! (I just thought it was going to take a little while longer with Aspen.) So now I’ve got another cat looking to me for the occasional cuddling – feels pretty good. I miss my Scrappy-Cuddles dreadfully sometimes.
Well, the parents have visited, seen Mitzy, and met Aspen…
Seems I have no need to worry about Aspen’s reaction to guests – she was approaching Mom to greet her the minute she walked in the door, and wandering around them getting attention for their entire visit…
Well, heading off to bed now – going to dinner with the parents tonight, so I’ve got to sleep beforehand. Then it’ll be the remainder of Plan: Finish That Blasted Story Before the Deadline at work tonight…
Okay, I got home from work this afternoon, and Aspen proceeded to act true to feline nature… She licked me more than she has in the past month, and started headbutting my arm for attention. I now know not to post anything about her behaviour unless I’m certain it’s not something she’s going to change.
Heading off to bed now…
Working late today, as my supervisor is off on vacation, so the rest of us are filling in when we can. Working late tomorrow as well. Definitely going to be exhausted, despite the duty not being overly onerous – 12-1/2 hours can take it out of one. Oh well – as of noon tomorrow, I’ll be enjoying my weekend, and I don’t have to work Saturday this week, so that’s a good thing… especially as I have to finish cleaning my apartment.
My parents are visiting (arrived in T.O. Tuesday night), and are coming over early Sunday afternoon – to see Mitzy and meet Aspen – so the place has to at least look neat, rather than the… ahem… mess it is now…
And speaking of my cats, I’ve found a rather interesting thing… Aspen (the new one – see CPR, AED, Cats, and Rec Pages from Nov. 13th) treats me unlike any other cat the family or I have had. Brightspot was a friend I grew up with (and am still mourning) and was very definitely my owner; to Mitzy I’m a lap, comfortable knees, and a means to get the attention that she is owed by right; and Aspen seems to regard me as a giant cat with opposable thumbs. It’s weird – she treats me exactly as though I were a cat (butting her head at my forehead to show affection – rather than a headbutt at my stomach or a hand to demand attention), giving me the same sort of treatment she gives Mitzy (though I don’t get licked nearly as much – Aspen licking me is much more rare than seeing her lick Mitzy). It makes for some interesting observations on feline behaviour. She really is an adorable little beast, who is becoming more and more affectionate faster than I had thought she would (having grown up on the streets).
Just general posting here… Had to do a CPR refresher & AED training course today, for work (AED: basically the public defibrillators that are in malls, rec centres, municipal buildings, etc.). The trainer kept things interesting, and I actually didn’t mind taking time out of my day to do it.
Got home, and figured it was very definitely time to trim the cats’ claws. Mitzy was, as usual, fairly complacent about it (well, as complacent as she ever gets about my hands manipulating her paws). Aspen (the newest: two-year old stray acquired from the Toronto Humane Society on July 30th), whose last claw trimming was the week I brought her home, and took two days and four attempts, objected semi-violently to me doing her first paw. After that, however, it went surprisingly smoothly – especially considering that Aspen is not a lap cat. So I have reasonable hopes for the next time I have to do it.
I then found out that my long (most likely novel-length) Harry Potter WIP, Harry Potter and the Sensitive’s Gift, has been added to a rec page of Snape/Harry Mentor, Guardian, Father/Son, Master/Apprentice, etc. stories, with a rating by the site owner of 5 chocolate frogs (her highest)! Found myself extremely flattered by that. If anyone’s interested, the rec page URL is Potions and Snitches, and my story is available at my Fanfiction.Net account – t.a.g.0, or directly at Harry Potter and the Sensitive’s Gift.