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23 June 2008

Interesting for the other recent grads...

Big Paycheck or Service?  Students Are Put to Test

A continuation of yesterday's topic...

Wine makes everything better, right?  Right????

Especially when it's called "Wrongo Dongo".  Hmmmm.  I don't know if it makes everything better but it sure does make writing this paper easier.

21 June 2008

Murr Lot

That is how this guy at the liquor store in Harlem was pronouncing merlot.  He asked me if I knew anything about wine, and told him that I sort of did.  So then he asks me all of these questions, including how "murr lot" tasted.  I gave some recommendations but he got confused when I started talking about sweet and dry and didn't understand how a liquid wine could be dry.  Oh well, I did my best.  

Also at the liquor store, I walk in, and they're giving away free samples!  Of gin!!  I was so taken aback that they were just handing out gin (and cranberry juice... together?  yuck) like we're at Costco and handing out free samples!  It's a different world out here.

In other random news... a little girl fell asleep on me on the subway today.  We were all squished and her head just rested right on my shoulder and she was out.  Very cute.

19 June 2008

Warm Fuzzies

It's become very clear to me that teachers are the most passionate group of people regarding their career.  My program at the university that I'm getting my M.Ed. from SOOO supportive... it's ridiculous.  There are so many staff members dedicated solely to us and our achievement as teachers.  And everyone just wants to help.  It's such a great support system and I feel incredibly lucky.  The only horrible thing is my commute, which can take anywhere from an hour to 1.5 hrs... grrr.  

I'll also be with the same group of about 100 people throughout the 2 years of the M.Ed. program, which is really comforting.  In all of this craziness and chaos, that's one thing that WON'T be changing.  I can't wait to see how we all develop as teachers and to share with each other stories and strategies.  (I know this is cheesy and ultra-positive, but don't burst  my bubble.)

In terms of my fellow classmates and future teachers, everyone has been amazing.  It's so inspiring to be in a group of people who all actually WANT to be there and are excited about the future.  Of course we have a very rosy view of teaching right now, since we haven't actually DONE it yet, but it's amazing to hear the motivations and reasons for some people becoming teachers.  And everyone genuinely wants to help each other and give and receive feedback.

Everything is a valid topic, question, concern; it's all just open forum.  I really enjoy the people I'm working with, and feel like I can depend on them already.  One girl that's in my group even gave me a hug as we parted ways after riding the subway (for an hour...), and it was just so nice and reassuring that we have those people to depend on.  A little human contact is always nice, and after all the stress and chaos we've had this week, a hug was definitely appropriate.

Tomorrow (Friday) we have off!!  Woooo!  But I still have a ton of errands to get done, then I'm having a friend over for dinner and we'll start off the weekend!  Weekends are going to have a whole different value to them now, this is for sure.  Happy Friday everyone!

17 June 2008

Stream of Consciousness

I'm too frazzled and all over the place to write a coherent paragraph, let alone blog post, so here are just some thoughts.

-I'm glad the Celtics are about to win the NBA Championship.  The fact that they are up right now by 40+ points is amazing and they are obviously deserving.
-My microwave pops the perfect bag of popcorn, which makes me very happy.
-The commute to school took waaaay longer than I thought (about 1hr 15mins... ).
-I hope I don't usually have to transfer subways on the way up to the Bronx.
-I learned today how Bronx kids differ from Harlem kids (as told by a Bronx girl in my program).  Apparently Harlem kids are a lot richer (or at least act like they are), and kids in the Bronx aren't as bad as everyone says they are.  She said that it's hard to be a Bronx kid because just the fact that they're from the Bronx people have negative views of them from the get-go... :(
-The person I talked with the most in my class and during my commute home was a (about) 45 year old woman, which makes me feel like a grown-up.
-Not that I can't be friends with grown-ups, but that they want to be friends with little ole me.
-Ikea delivered the wrong color dresser to me but since it was a hassle to return it, I decided to keep it and paint it.  But as I was putting it together I realized I kind of like the white dresser among my otherwise black furniture, so I think I'll keep it that way.
-At least for now I'll keep it that way.  If I don't like it in August I'll paint it but for now there is no time and energy.
-Of course there was a wrong piece in one of the boxes and I have to call Ikea and work that out... it's always something.
-I'm glad the weather's cooling off in New York!!
-Moving is soooo environmentally un-friendly... I have no idea with the 4 HUGE boxes of cardboard that I have... let alone the styrofoam.  At least the cardboard can be recycled. 
-I need to figure out what day is garbage day.
-I have a new found love for wrap sandwiches.
-I'm doing my best this year to not waste any food that I buy... too often we (or maybe just I...) buy so much food that I never end up eating.  Very wasteful (and expensive).
-I hate the fact that I had to buy books today for our university classes.
-I'm glad that we don't have the dreaded 8am days until July 1.
-I'm nervous to work with kids during field training (July 1)... I've heard a lot of stories of the observation that I didn't get to do and I have no idea what I'm in for.
-I hope that the kids can't sense how inexperienced and how "I-have-absolutely-no-clue-what-I'm-doing" I feel.
-They're singing "Livin' on a Prayer" at the Celtics game... makes me miss college.
-So many people today told me how brave it was to move to New York right after college... this made me feel proud but also scared (like wtf am I doing if it's that scary and brave to come here???).
-I live right on the border of a gentrifying neighborhood.  You can tell because all of the white people get off at my stop.  But the area past mine is slowly getting better... it will be very interesting to see what it looks like in 20 years.

Ok, that's enough rambling now.


A Short Story of Molly and Paulie

Molly took over my bed basically this morning...

Then she passed out in a very dog-like position.

She was asleep until Paulie came to visit, and then she... 

started grooming him!  Molly is very frisky with Paulie in the morning.

Then they decided that was enough playing around and decided to hang out and watch pigeons outside and dream of one day catching them.


I'll write more about yesterday and today tonight... but this morning the kitties were being super cute...

16 June 2008


I don't know if it really shows from the pictures... but that is a HUGE pile of screws and other sorts of things that I don't know the name to.  When I opened this package for my Ikea desk, I was a little shocked, because there were more pieces to the desk than the bed, and that just doesn't seem right.  But, after an hour or so of hard work, all of those screws turned into....

A desk!  Messy, I know, but everything in my room is still chaotic unfortunately.  Hopefully that will be remedied this week at some point...  I also built my bed!  Here it is:

So now I have furniture!  Everything w/ Ikea went great... except for my dresser.  I got the wrong color.  And they won't take it back without charging me the $100+ delivery fee for another one.  So that leaves me pretty much with only one option, to paint it to match the rest of the furniture.  But it's just so annoying because I wanted my dresser more than anything to put all of my clothes away and just to have things off of my floor.  It can't always go smoothly, can it.

I spent Saturday at a good friend's in New Jersey for her college grad party... it was a lot of fun and nice to see friends and hang out in the nice weather (perfect way to spend my birthday)!  Today starts our first day of pre-service training for teaching.  Basically, we're getting eased into it.  Today we just have this event and it should only last like 2 hours.  Then tomorrow we actually have to report to our universities that we're getting our Masters from and we have classes... eeks.  My university said we don't have to get there until about 3, which is different than most saying you have to get there at 9am tomorrow.  So I guess I'll get to sleep in for one more day.  

I have a lot of stuff I still need to get... printer, paint for furniture, ladder, power drill, alarm clock... I feel like the list keeps getting bigger everyday.  I can't wait until I'm at that point where I HAVE everything and can stop worrying about it.  For now though, my biggest challenge is figuring out where to put all of this cardboard from my Ikea things... moving creates a lot of garbage, that's for sure.

13 June 2008

Waiting for reality to set in...

So far, it doesn’t really feel like I’m actually living here.  I haven’t had one of those “aha” moments where it’s like I realize that I’m actually living in New York for the foreseeable future.  For some reason it doesn’t really faze me.  Part of me wishes that it did!  I don’t know if it’s because I got used to the whole public transportation/big city thing in Munich or what.  Not that Munich is really a huge city, but I still think it prepared me in a way.  Prepared me to do things on my own, to know what to do when you get lost, to know how to navigate a subway system. 

I really do love New York though… there’s just so much to do and see and everyday you can see something new.  I already feel like I’m at “home” with my neighborhood and where I live.  Once I get my furniture (tomorrow!) it will finally feel even more like home.  I’m sick of having my clothes in piles on the floor (believe it or not) and my computer on my bed due to lack of a desk.  Despite Mom’s concerns (hi Mom!), I’m going to attempt to put all of the Ikea furniture together by myself.  I think I can do it, and the control freak in me just wants to do it myself.  Now if I ended up lofting my bed I probably would have had a professional do it, because falling to my death from a dorm-style bed is not something I’d like to experience.  But a regular bed is do-able I think.

Today I discovered that I actually have work (writing assignments) due for my first day of class on Tuesday.  So I’m back to being a college student (yay!).  Currently I am sitting at a coffee shop right across from Columbia with my computer and a huge 600 pg. book that I’m supposed to have read by Tuesday (won’t happen).  Tonight I will most likely lay low and try to get as much of this work done as possible.  Then tomorrow hopefully I’ll get my furniture in the morning, then off to NJ for a day of birthday/graduation celebrations with friends and then beach on Sunday hopefully! 

Have a great weekend everyone J

12 June 2008


Mom told me today that she couldn't leave a comment, so I changed the settings so now you don't have to have a blog account to leave comments... no excuses now!

New York's greener spaces

Here are the findings of today's explorations of my neighborhood... 

For all of you Seinfeld fans out there... 


Morningside Park... right down the street from me.

Morningside Park again... note the huge rocks.  New York has a lot more hills than you'd think.

Central Park

"The Pool" in Central Park

General Grant's tomb... this is literally like 2 blocks away from me and I had no idea it existed until I found it today!

10 June 2008

Moving in

Well, the cat loves me.  This is Paulie... one of the 2 cats in my apartment.  The other is a girl and looks pretty much exactly the same.  Moving in is going well... so far.  Another hot day in NY... my air conditioner is seriously my best friend right now.  Highlights of my day include buying a mattress (which should be delivered any time now), going to Whole Foods for some lunch, and going to Home Depot.  And now I'm just waiting on the mattress....

Tomorrow I'll embark on the adventure of a lifetime... IKEA in New Jersey.  Apparently you have to be physically present in order to order furniture for delivery... grr.  Should be interesting at least.  

09 June 2008


That's how much I spent at Bed Bath and Beyond today.... and I didn't even get everything on my list.  Sigh.  On a positive note, I got an air conditioner (and got $25 off) and delivery only cost $15.  I met some really nice people in line actually who were from the area I'm living in and gave me great tips on restaurants and stuff.  When I told them I just moved here today they literally said "welcome!"... and it really did make me feel welcome.  Whoever said New Yorkers weren't nice must not be nice themselves... because as long as you're friendly so are they.

After a minor bank fiasco, I realized I hadn't eaten all day (it was 5:30 pm)... so a quick stop to Chipotle on the way home fixed that.  I also followed home a really cute father-son pair... he was obviously walking his son home from school, and turns out they live on my street.  It's nice to know that there are families in the area who do regular family things.  I also noticed on the way home that when fire trucks go by here, some people were like waving or saluting them as they go by.  I've never seen that sort of respect for firefighters before, but it was very refreshing.

Now I just need to get my new bank account figured out (I got a Tiger's debit card for all of you who were thinking I'd become a Yankee's fan).  And I'm anxiously waiting for my BB&B stuff (aka AC) to get here so I can get some stuff done.  Semi-successful day I think.


Due to the requests of many family members and friends, this is my attempt at a blog.  I know in the past I haven't been so good, but I'll try harder this time, I promise.  Because this blog is public and I'll be working in a public position, the real names of my students, coworkers, friends, school, etc. will never be revealed, but hopefully I can come up with appropriate pseudonyms.  For this reason, my name for the purpose of this blog is Miss Adventurous, or Miss A.  Kind of corny, yeah yeah, but whatever, it works.

Anyways, I literally just got into my apartment.... and wow.  I've never been so sweaty in my life.  Have you ever tried carrying a 70lb. suitcase up 4 flights of stairs in 96 degree heat?  Didn't think so.  Ok, now begins the massive spending spree (and NOT in a good way).  More updates to come, I promise this time.