Thursday, June 30, 2005

cool and in control

the dog and i both got up early to train this morning, and then it hit me that we had inspection, so it wasn't a good idea. i made it in time to the base, polished my boots, and went down to the yard.

the mongoose arrived. removed his chain from his neck. i remembered to check my neck for my dog tags... which weren't there. i'd left them in my bag.

so i ran away from inspection, disappearing *just* before the discipline officers arrived.

a short while later, i receive an email from the mongoose. he'd forgotten his off-base pass at home, but decided that unlike me, he was going to be a man and take his punishment. and now he's in big shit, and pissed off that i didn't get caught - even though the discipline officers spent the morning going round the base trying to find the people who ditched the inspection.

this morning went well for me ^_^

i spent the day doing all sorts of interesting things, and would have been quite satisfied had that been the end of it. but just before the end of the day, our commander took me aside and informed me that from sunday until halfway through september (at least), i am officially the team commander.

BOOYAH!

so i'm rather chuffed. though not entirely surprised. but still.

had a couple of amusing incidents with some girls on the base today - one of them (a particularly foxy young thing) seems quite annoyed to have seen me loitering with a girl i've been friendly with for ages... i can't help hoping this might go somewhere.

i cashed a check today that was almost due to be invalidated (i received it in february), and then went to the dog's, to go shopping with him and his grandmother. bought all sorts of stuff i needed, got to the checkout, and the cashier wiped out the NIS 120 that was in my account. by accident.

so we waited there for half an hour while the manager sorted everything out. was frustrating, and pointless, yet amusing.

had supper (croissants, and watermelon with bulgarian cheese), a super-fast shower, and here i am at work.

not complaining.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

*happy sigh*

good day, good ending.

downside to the day was this morning - the dog was late, so i had to give him a reprimand. that quite sucked.

we got some work done this morning, then our section went to the park for a day of kiddies' sports and games... it was great! and then the dog and i went to see batman begins.

it - was - batman. for real. no shit. i haven't been blown away by a movie since pirates of the caribbean, and this movie has instantly become one of my favourites. start to finish, and i even enjoyed the... naaaah, i won't spoil it ;)

going to bed soon (one small bug to repair first), then waking up early to train a bit before hitting the office. s'been good.

a long two days

i just got home (around 1am), after leaving my apartment monday morning 7am. and i'm BEAT, but i have to get this all down.

monday was a long day... quite a bit of work, and running around. i went off to get my weapon and flak jacket at 3pm, at 4.30pm finally got released for half an hour. so i played volleyball, in searing heat. not smart. by the time sundown came, i was rather burnt (and having a newly-shaven head makes that *smart*). nothing like a bit of sunstroke to lift one's spirits.

the dog, the mongoose and i worked from 6pm till 1.30am, and then i went to guard from 2am till 6. no sleep, i - was - broken. slept about an hour after the shift, then had to stand for ages for the changing of the guard.

i had to help raise the flag, which is way less complicated than folding it up. and i still don't know what's up, as nobody's ever bothered to explain it to me.

after a half hour battle with the shift commanders over whether i should remain on alert or not, i returned all my gear and went back to my office, where i had to be on alert for our systems (stuff happened today).

all went smoothly, so i spent my day, until around 2/3pm, sleeping in the office.

in the evening, the dog and i stayed late again, and worked with the mongoose until just after midnight - and we're pretty much finished.

aweful thing is, we BOTH forgot to sign out when leaving the base, so now instead of it saying that we've been on the base for 40 hours, it says we've forgotten to sign in / out 3 times.
that just sucks piles.

smoking rather a lot, i don't know how i feel about that.

Monday, June 27, 2005

drained and definitely disappearing

after working till past midnight, i walked to the lizard. arbed around, the mermaid's protector was rather friendly, and had a drink with the mongoose. and then walked home (badly needing to pee. painfully so.)

i couldn't not read (for all his flaws, orson scott card can tell the story of ender's game excellently), and finally got to sleep around 3.30. i awoke at 6.50, and scrambled... making the bus with plenty of time.

unusual, and satisfying.

t'was a long day, but i didn't really do anything productive. i guess i'm back to smoking :/, and the dog and i spent the day hatching evil plans and catching up. and there was much tomfoolery in the section.

and we may or may not be getting sick. that's just great.

came straight home, launched into aforementioned emergency work, and finally finished it around 10pm. when i say finished, i've packaged it and sort-of tested it, and explained to the boss how to use it. vaguely.

i really hope it doesn't crash and burn. that would be most unfortunate. at the very least, however, it's no worse than what the previous programmer left behind.

i'm about to crash, guarding tomorrow and we're running exercises on tuesday, which conflicts with being on alert. that sucks.
whatever.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

*such* a difficult day ^_^

i woke up late, spent the morning reading and writing down some thoughts i've had for the incredible idea i've had... (i realized the hardware required is only by the way, so it's just a matter of software development).

i read most of the day, played a neat little game called sudoku, watched tv, and rested. loooooooooots of resting.

i got back home about an hour ago, and launched into the mongoose's project... i'm done. about to begin on the serious bug the boss and i worked on on thursday night, and then off to the lizard for a drink. and possibly a confrontation with the mermaid's friend / hopeless lover-wannabe guardian-wannabe.

cigarette count: through the roof. naah, not that bad, but it's not good either.

Friday, June 24, 2005

serenity now!

i managed, somehow, to wake up at 10am. i worked really hard on the website for the mongoose, and progressed rather a lot... a little more grindwork, and it'll be done. hopefully i'll figure out xml's innerHTML problem, and a really stupid (obviously unforeseen) graphical alignment issue.

went to azrieli... the bus driver was being an asshole... the mall was totally crowded... i was aggravated anyway (lack of sleep + all those cigarettes)... the mongoose called to irritate me with demands...

i had a quick breakfast / lunch, and made my way to the kibbutz. i got here around 3 / 4pm, changed and went to the pool.

there was something almost spiritual about being immersed in the cool, clear water after being all sweaty in uniform. i thoroughly enjoyed myself. only problem is that i'd forgotten how little i'd slept, and i'm not very strong anymore, so i could only survive a couple of laps :(

got back, crashed on the couch, showered and went to supper. the food was goooooood. very tasty. my mom's cousin and i just got back from dropping off her father, and i have serious plans to do nothing of value tonight.

read rather a lot of ender's shadow - it annoys me when a mistake like "he oriented himself" isn't caught. what, did he slant his eyes, change his skin colour, and develop strange mannerisms? i don't think so.
as an addition to my previous post's comment, i think these books are good in spite of him. in this one, following bean's journey is like playing a great adventure game with a complete walkthrough on your lap. everything is too convenient, and it gets to me that his intelligence comes across as inconsistent.

i've been thinking a lot about the officers' course. i have an issue with getting rank based of length of service, and being an officer is - no shit - a good thing. but there are two problems:
1) the language barrier. i need to improve my hebrew if i want to have a chance.
2) i'd have to sign on at least another 9 months. that kind of puts my plans on hold, and i'm not certain that that's warranted. as it is, there's time pressure on everything i want to do.

dammit, i think i just solved my problem. so i won't go.

cigarette count for today: i'm guessing 4.

an interesting (and very long) thursday

with a repeat performance due to a blue screen of death

i made inspection on time again, and discovered that shaving one's head lends a new aspect to wearing the beret. styling.

i finally got through stage one in updating my personal details in the army. they can't possibly screw it up any worse than last time... or can they? i'll be tuning in next week, for more hilarious moments. then i'll be tossing my television, and buying myself a good book.

worked a bit in the morning, then prepared for inspection by our unit commander.

the inspection was going just fine, until the commander of our wing noticed that i've written "clerk" (in hebrew - the army euphemism for "janitor") on my name tag. in front of the unit commander, i was loudly and aggressively upbraided (aka screamed at like a dog who's peed on the persian), and shamed our section commander by attempting to defend myself - truth is, it IS my official job title.

i was threatened with being assigned a real janitorial position.

wunderbar.

so i spent the next part of the morning running around organizing name tags.

worked a bit more, then had a solidly aweful lunch. got back to work, and then spent the rest of the afternoon dealing with the section's mascot fish. which entailed buying a new cleaner fish, and cleaning out the aquarium.

t'was fun, but disgusting.

also continued reading neal stephenson - the diamond age, and now that i'm near the middle it has become absolutely fantastic. literally :) i got so stuck into a fairy tale i almost stayed late.

i bussed through to herzeliya, having a long, arb conversation with one of the "clerks" from the quarter-master's store (we call it supplies.), and then some guy from my algorithms class. and then i got to the bank.

i spent about 40 minutes in the bank, they've finally agreed to look into sorting out the amount of money they owe me. that's extremely nice of them. i'll be sure to be holding my breath.

*holds breath*

right, nothing magical happened. surprise.

i walked through to my boss's place, and began working on the urgent bug. a few months ago i wrote some code related to it, treating the previous "author"'s code as a black box. the problem was somewhere in there, where it turned out he'd written code that required an enormous amount of processing power (multiple recursions and logic bombs), inside a DATABASE.

genius.

so i figured out how to replace it all with simple code, by adding a kilobyte to the data stored. hmmm.

only problem is, i forgot about the code i'd written, and spent over an hour simply figuring out that what i'd changed worked, and was correct.
that's very frustrating.

i left at 22.30, and got home at 23.30. i've been reading orson scott card - ender's shadow on the busses... i quote:

"i have never found it surprising that ... speaker for the dead, xenocide, and children of the mind - never appealed as strongly to those younger readers. the obvious reason is that ender's game is centered around a child, while the sequels are about adults"

no, dude. it's because the sequels suck so badly that they're barely readable. they're total crap, and demonstrate nothing more than an incredibly naive and childish comprehension of basic human relationships and social functions. which is why you should stick to writing from children's perspectives, 'cause at least you can get that more or less (with the help from our friend, suspension of disbelief) right.

i quickly changed, still smelling sweaty and gross, and got picked up by our friend the section civilian (OFTSC). we drove through to a cool party (last night celebrated the fact that tel aviv kicks ass. officially.), with great music and superb calamari. i thoroughly enjoyed myself, dancing along to music from funk to salsa and back, until about 2.30am.

and then i wanted to see the other events. by the time i realized the guys weren't going anywhere, it was 3.30, and i walked to the balcony. sucky kiddies party, i was most disappointed. the rest of tel aviv was pretty much dead, so i walked back home.

gonna shower, shave, crash, then go to the kibbutz. ah yeah. sod the plan to rent a car, i can't be bothered.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

falling into bed

about to hit the shower and crash... got inspection in the morning...

i got LOADS of work done tonight, so i'm rather pleased with myself. and i had a good supper.

total cigarette count for wednesday: 2. only one more than last reported.

alright, i guess

almost anticipated - i slept through till it was time to catch the bus. i made it with a few seconds to spare, so i got to have "breakfast".

the food on the base seems to be taking a "random walk". but it's bad, no matter how random... and i consume an absolutely rediculous amount of sugar. it's stupid, and i have even less self-control with it than i do with cigarettes. which i've only smoked one of today (although it's relatively early, but if the first one was when i got home, i can't be doing too badly).

i actually worked quite a bit today, and got a bit of exercise to boot. using the word boot in a sentence is awkward when you're in uniform most of the time.

when i got home, i walked to the bank... which was closed. i wasted twenty minutes when i was already overheating, because i'd forgotten what day it was.
wow.

i've gotten a bit of work done, but i've got loads left... i really hope i get somewhere today. the mongoose is nagging after his work, and the company's is way more important, and we're way more behind.

i suddenly remembered on the way home that an up-north cousin is having a batmitzvah celebration tomorrow, and got all panicky that i hadn't been in contact with them, and would have to get up north, and not have enough time to work, and so on. but it turns out it's just a party for her friends, so i'll be skipping.

and spending this weekend on the kibbutz. ah-yeah.

oh... and my goggles rock even harder when my head's shaved. and i got a head-rub after lunch that the memory thereof turns me to jelly *pleased grin*

time to burn.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

cross-eyed and going back to bed

yesterday:

walked to the holocaust memorial center. it was early morning, and summer hasn't begun yet, and it was stiflingly hot, and sticky. this is going to be a long haul.

it was my first holocaust lecture in hebrew. i find hebrew lectures painful, but i more or less followed, and didn't fall asleep. totally a first.

the second part was a story from an auchshwitz survivor. not only a chilling story in itself, and all the more powerful for being first-hand, but i've begun looking at the holocaust as if i was there, as if it were an event set for our future, too.

the idea that we still haven't found a -solution- to the holocaust, a way to deal with that level of genocide, is deeply disturbing.

while guarding, i had a superb idea related to urban gaming. more on that one day, hopefully it won't fall by the wayside. so many good ideas do.

got back to the base, worked for an hour, then went to guard. our section commander was in charge of the guarding for last night, and that was actually a lot of fun - plus we had a really good group (including some really lovely girls), so all in all i didn't sleep a hell of a lot.

i guarded from 2 - 6am, which turned into a most interesting shift - and my first attempt at philosophical argument in hebrew. and it really didn't go too badly.

had an adventure-game morning, running errands that produced more errands, and then we were on alert for the day. i'm very proud of myself - on alert, i went and had my head shaved. t'was fun, and the dude did a good job. i was most impressed by his attitude - it's nice to see a soldier who enjoys and is good at his job.

spent most of the day attempting to sleep in the barracks. which was difficult, because it was stinking hot and the aircons weren't working.

lunch was alright, and i spent about 20 minutes explaining to the new kid why he should carry out direct orders from the section commander. 20 minutes justifying the section commander's leadership, and explaining that if he didn't do it, i'd have to ('cuz i is in charge, ek se).

sometimes i'm amazed that "soldiers" expect total fairness in the army. and that they think that we have civilian rights. weird.

after returning weapons, i went to sort out some things in the personnel division. and discovered - to my great surprise - that in case of emergency, my mom's listed as the person for them to contact. and she's apparently contactable in an arbitrary street in tel-aviv.
wow.
so i've got to go through a whole mission to update this information, which is not amusing seeing as it's been so wrong for so long.

went back to the office for about half an hour, nothing interesting was happening, and i finally remembered to take my playstation. now to find a tv.

i came home, uncomfortably sticky and smelly and gross, had a SERIOUS shower, and crashed after putting on the washing machine. i was going to go blading, but i am totally broken - i'm hopefully going to wake up early enough tomorrow to get some work done... 'cause right now i'm about as useful as... well... something pretty useless.

cigarette count: lots. but only while officially guarding / on alert.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

dammit.

i WASTED today.

worked until 2.30am, slept till 6.40am.

lot of work this morning, right until the power-out. got a weapon for the day (i STILL don't like uzzis), and buggered about till leaving time.

passed by work, wasn't very interesting. came home, and have been struggling for almost 3 hours with asp and adodb. and i'm now giving up. it can't just do like it says on the tin, can it?

cool plan for the weekend - gonna rent a car, and go to a trance party somewhere.

gonna go get some graze.

comfortably numb

i got to the mall, and disappointed the mongoose because i'd forgotten to arrive in uniform. so we had to jump the wall of our base.

hmmm. dodgy.

we got a bit of work done, then left. i watched total recall when i got home - great film! and then the mongoose picked me up to take me to ra'anana.

i spent the night at the mermaid's. i can't believe i slept with her (that went VERY well), and then decided (again) that i'm just not interested.

what a prick. i've become a total bastard.
or have i? i don't really care TOO much. and she does cook worse than her mom - OUCH.

the mongoose picked me up early this afternoon, and we came back to work at my place. it's nice to have a pc of my own to work from.
very nice.

got quite a lot done, then went to the mall. bought a solar-powered smiley face that bobs his head hypnotically - i'm calling him pustulio. had a huge supper, then walked to the lizard.

we talked and chilled for a bit, i've just returned, and am considering doing some more work.

cigarette count for yesterday: 0.
cigarette count for today: 4.

Friday, June 17, 2005

daisy - it's the new me!

wednesday:

basically spent the day in the office sleeping. got busted by our section commander.

in the evening i went with sammy and the now pregnant wife to the wedding - it was a nice wedding. apparently the groom cut his foot when stamping on the glass, but he seemed fine afterwards so i'm not sure. we ate a LOT of good food.

managed to control my smoking to about 5 cigarettes in total. not bad at all. it's the first time i've managed to care about what each one does to my lungs. and how i smell (both ways).

yesterday:

i went to inspection yesterday morning for the first time in months. and got shouted at, because the discipline officer signed something off that was incomplete, and i didn't do anything about it. Not My Problem.

we had a crisis at work, which resulted in so much work that i didn't get to lunch. not exactly a great loss, the food has been getting progressively worse. any more degradation in quality and we may just find ourselves sucking lunch from a sewerage pipe.

so i napped a bit, worked a lot, and then went to herzeliya. tried dealing with the bank, which was a no go. they'd called me during the day to say that my current branch can't help me out if my previous branch overcharged me. it's - the - same - bank.
morons.
but the old branch can't deal with me because the new branch has locked all transaction records.

WOW.

so sunday morning will see me by the fax machine, trying to sort something out.

i went past the computer dealer's, to get the motherboard driver cd, and he convinced me that i'd received it.

i went past work, and nobody was there. hmmm.

i went home. showered. slept. i vaguely recall people calling me in the middle of the night.

down to about three cigarettes. suffering badly, i hear voices calling to me from the box - "smoke me!!"

today:

i've done laundry, tidied a little, and i'm now typing this from my personal pc!! they were right, i had the cd (hidden inside a manual), and so far so good. very, very pretty.

i'm off to the mall, where i'm meeting up with the mongoose so we can go and do some work, and the mermaid should be arriving tonight sometime...

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

hooo-whee. that was a nutty one.

i finally called it a day yesterday at 11pm.

i woke up at 6.30am, rushed out and made it *just* in time for the bus. until 2pm, i was still in a dream-state - it was really hard for me to get out of bed.

the day rolled by, lots of work, crap food for lunch. i can't believe i got any of it down my throat. at 4pm we started playing volleyball, and that was great. we finally finished around 7.30pm, totally beat after having a really good time.

went to the dog's, had supper, rushed to my place, put on blades, then rushed to meet up with the group.

firstly, i was wearing orange pants, and i brought my sign that says "i just like orange" (the colour has become synonymous with those refusing to leave the settlements). that was received exceptionally well.

secondly, the dog needs to learn how to blade properly. eventually, he couldn't carry on, so we managed to get back to a road, flagged down a taxi, and got to my place. having first had a couple of drinks :P

he's sitting behind me blowing up the air-mattress. we're both disgustingly dirty, in desperate need of showering (still no hot water), and we've got to be up real early in the morning.

it has been a LONG day, with some good things, and it has almost come to an end.

i've decided to go to the wedding tomorrow empty-handed. sucks, but i have no idea what to take.

Monday, June 13, 2005

dirty and untidy and not neat and messy and other obsessive-compulsive ramblings

yesterday i slept until about 2pm, tried to do a little work, and that about covers it. i took the bus to herzeliya, and from there went with my cousins to jerusalem for shavuot dinner.

excellent food, i totally stuffed myself. hadn't eaten all day, so a shot of southern comfort had gone straight to my head, and that being in addition to overall exhaustion didn't lead me to being particularly social.

she gave me a hard knock - the new boyfriend was playing some playstation game, and she made him teach her how to play. never asked ME to do that. not nice.

her mom gave me a ride to the lizard, where it could have been a nice party, if anyone had bothered to show up. met an incredibly cute girl from our base, and then went home.

i got up around 11am this morning, caught up on webcomics, and have been doing laundry smoking a lot while working some. and i've just been confronted by a brick wall of note, and don't know how to continue.

my apartment is an absolute mess. there's too much shit lying around to clean, and not enough space to tidy it up. i really have no clue what to do about this. it's all rather frustrating.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

hulk SMASH

not as much bulk, but definitely as much anger. i don't know what triggered this.

in reverse order, beginning now:

i just got back from the lizard, crazy party, but not great. i've been in a strange mood, and too many people just didn't do it for me. the music wasn't so great either.

i got to the lizard straight from the mermaid's (a bus and a long walk), where i spent the greater part of the evening. it was nice, and although we haven't slept together, it's nice to know she's relaxed about sex - quite refreshing after the last relationship.

during the day, i did pretty much nothing. a little tidying after the girls left, but i've still got a way to go. and i couldn't get the net connection on the new pc up and running, so i also couldn't get the sound sorted out. very frustrating.

at least it runs knoppix like a bomb. i can watch movies now - when i have the time.

i got home at 5.20am, from an INCREDIBLE party at the lizard. great music, excellent atmosphere, and i had a VERY pleasant run-in with the mermaid... we've decided to give it another shot.

yesterday:

got home from playing pool, and started watching closer. i'd forgotten how good the lines were, although aside from natalie portman the acting really was shite. the girls fell asleep in the first few minutes, and the mongoose called me to tell me to get over to the party immediately. i'm glad i obliged.

played pool at the lincoln, which was quite fun. after walking from the promenade, where we had a picnic "friday night supper" sitting on the pavement in the middle of everything, being total tourists. it was definitely an experience.

my cousin, her friend and i got back to my apartment, totally sunburned (me at least), after a long walk in serious heat. summer hasn't begun yet, and the sun is back with a vengeance.

the mongoose and i had a major water fight while on the way to azrieli - it got seriously out of hand. and he was in uniform, which is definitely not okay :P fun though...

spent the early afternoon with the gay pride parade, which was interesting. loads of people, loads of gorgeous girls, and way too much sunshine.

in the morning i'd tidied my room a little, after waking up from a 12 hour crash - missing my commander's housewarming.

oh well.

thursday:

got half the day off, so went to herzeliya with the dog to pick up my check, deposit it, and return to tel aviv. that took more than the half day, and i only managed to get home around 8pm.

bombed.

for the first half of the day, the dog and i played tekken in our office (because we have so much work that we WANT to do, of course!), did a bit of aforementioned work, cleaned the office, and played texas holden while waiting for the floor to dry. i came out on top, which was fun :)

i've no clue how i got up in the morning. at midnight, i still had a 20 minute walk ahead of me to get home, and i was EXHAUSTED.

wednesday:

my commander found me a totally crap task, real menial labour (in computing terms), that will more than fill my time for the next month. so i spent the day doing it. in the evening our team had to stay late in case there were problems, so we spent 5 hours playing tekken. and eating horrid pizza, and loads of munchies.

sum up:

i have loads of work to do, which i may or may not begin on now depending on how much the redbull is affecting me, and i'm beaten completely from the last week. tomorrow is a day for visiting the bank, working, and then heading off to the family from the holiday meal. and hopefully getting to the insane party lined up for tomorrow night. and then more working on monday. because that's what holidays are for.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

*wail* whooooooooo you're back in the army, now

damn, two days down... it's been really difficult getting out of bed so early.

it's more fun with the dog around, and i haven't got any work to do at the moment. nice to see everyone again, things are generally okay.

last night i introduced the dog to my boss, it was a most interesting meeting. found out some more about the RFID project, and it completely fascinates me. we've been told that the time allowed for the project is only 10 weeks, so it'll be high-stress, but cool.

got to bed late - i've had the new pc for over a week, still haven't plugged it in. but i am planning on blading to the base in the morning :) (orange is the protest colour for the idiots in the settlements, so i've made a sign for my overalls that says "i just like the colour orange").

playing some tekken, then some pool, then crashing. life is hard, sometimes.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

a long day, and parting is such sweet sorrow

i type this, sweating like a pig in my super-heated room, with mosquitoes buzzing around just itching to attack...

i can't believe i just typed that, but it stays.

today started with me sitting in on a meeting with some guy, then shopping and photocopying degree things... and eating a lot, donating some old clothes and shoes, my mom packing, having a good talk with her - and she is GORGEOUS in uniform, driving to the mongoose's (and getting lost a different way), having drinks with his folks (our 'rents seem to get along), and then missioning to the airport.

i was expecting to spend some time with my mom before she left, but the plans got skewed, so we said a hasty goodbye at the entrance, and i went off to return the car. i'm sure i got ripped. or, at least, my mom got ripped. not cool either way.

the mongoose drove me home, and i'm now sitting in the most rediculous scene - my apartment looks like a cartoon depiction of a messy home. so many things, no place, no inclination to tidy right now.

going to bed soon (after a desperately needed shower), then it's army time.

i miss my mommy already.

totalled

thursday:

didn't celebrate. sleep rather well.

first fought with the shop that overcharged on the rollerblades - nothing can be done till tomorrow...
went shopping with my mom in tel aviv on friday morning. got shopped out. totally. wiped out. had a nice lunch, a very serious sized roast-beef sandwhich, then left for the kibbutz.

on the way, i got cocky, and made a very dangerous mistake when it comes to dealing with aggressive israeli drivers - ended up doing 160kph on a road's shoulder (narrow) in order to avoid rear-ending someone uninvolved at high speed. not cool.

the bastard was trying to kill us, though.

got to the kibbutz just fine, met another new set of relatives - nice people, and interesting - had a nice supper, and we all talked until very late.

slept incredibly well, but had to get up early to say goodbye. i had an AMAZING shower, my mom helped me pack up my stored things, and said goodbye.

had a craving for mcdonald's on the way home. kept missing the turnoffs due to bad signage, had to watch as we passed (repeatedly) the golden arches. eventually got to the one in herzeliyah pituach, and it's a SUCKY one. i had a bad burger and a brilliant milkshake.

napped a much needed half an hour, then went off to her parents for lunch. an ENORMOUS lunch, and very tasty.

shouldn'ta touched the mickey d's.

after a veyr relaxing afternoon, went through to tel aviv to pick up the dog, who helped me unload my stuff at my apartment, and then went back to his place for an hour or so of tekken.

which rocked.

kicked ass, even.

we tried to get into a club where his friends were supposed to be, but it was a private party so our access was denied. dude was a right prat about it too.

got lost on the way to the lizard (driving tel aviv is VERY different from walking), but made it there eventually. things were warming up, i had a gin and tonic, and discovered too late (i'd practically finished it) that the bartender had used a *little* more gin than anticipated.

tripped me out completely. i felt something was wrong, so dragged the dog out with me for coffee. started to calm down a bit - we're planning a trip for winter-time already to go snowboarding (as if, like nobody else has promised to take me to see snow) - and then made our way back.

the music was great, but most of the girls had left already.
swak.

i just got home now, am about to hit the shower, then it's up early again. my mommy's leaving, and it's going to be super weird going back to the army on monday morning. and not being on holiday.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

extended brain-fart

i am totally in shock, not in any danger of recovering anytime soon ^_^

we just got back from the graduation ceremony, and it was FANTASTIC. and to cap it off, the dean of the computer science school said some really nice things about me, and called me up *alone* (i was only warned that a few of us would be going up and lip-syncing), and that was really special.

it was really nice to get in touch with so many people, and i've already begun sending out emails here and there... serious social networking. and it was great having most of the class together again.

to go back to the relatively mundane, this morning we went to SSSO's late grandmother's apartment, and although it was a bit tough, i walked out with the feeling that we'd done the right thing.

*ADDED* almost forgot - the shop that we bought the rollerblades from called today, to inform me that they accidentally charged me 7 times for them. that explains why i can't draw any cash. i'm not half panicked... they'd better sort this shit out soon. *END ADDED*

so that basically sums up the day - i just realized that it's thursday night, so i'm going to make an attempt at doing something special :D

out from sleep-encrusted eyes

sunday cont'd:

the farewell party was in the irish pub in cinema city - well designed enough that when you leave you're shocked to find yourself in a mall-type place. the evening was alright.

monday:

woke up super-early, fetched my mum, and went to the base. we visited the section, and the welfare office (most amusing), mongoose's section, and had some coffee.

and then went to my place to pack, and pick up my pc. dropped it off at the computer store, with instructions to provide a breath of life.
and then... we went... to haifa!

when we got there, we meandered up and down the streets at random, and that was simply awesome. i felt totally at home there, and thoroughly enjoyed myself. we had a look at the stunning view from above the bahai gardens, and then moved on to lunch, at a coffee shop in the general vicinity of the university.

man, it's pretty.

we then drove on, in fits and bursts (constantly stopping for one thing or another), to the cousin's ex-kibbutz, metzuba. it's pretty much on the lebanese border, and it's simply beautiful.

around 10pm, we went to a bed & breakfast village called nofesh achziv. very nice little place. slept like a log.

tuesday:

we were served a giant breakfast in the morning - very "traditional" israeli breakfast (lies!!), so it was actually very good.

we spent the morning in akko (acre), which started off nicely, but i began to get agitated at some point. i think it may have been a combination of the millions of israeli kids, and all the arabs. it took me until haifa to start relaxing again.

i am completely, and utterly, head-over-heels in love with haifa. it's just a modified version of cape town. absolutely stunning, very much more relaxed than the rest of the country. we stopped off for a serious lunch of brownies and coffee, then began the journey back to herzliya.

we took road 4... and finally found dor! with only a couple of minor details! and then nachshalim! a beautiful kibbutz! and then tel dor! with lots of signs! with lots of exclamation marks! warning us not to fall in the big holes!

it's a lovely place, and the harbour excavations did look interesting. my mom seemed well satisfied to see the place in real life, as opposed to studying it in books (which she did for her degree). so we ambled about, and then went back to herzeliya.

later on i met up with the dog, and we played an hour's worth of pool. because he'd brought *just* enough money, and i'm not paying for any more pool until he doesn't owe me anymore.

afterwards we went to bazel for coffee. DAMN, but we spent a lot of time and petrol looking for parking. very frustrating.

i had watermelon and bulgarian cheese, which was great, and then went home.

yesterday:

i didn't get up too early :) picked up my mom, went to the bank, then to the computer store - my baby's looking FINE. left it at the cousins', then drove off to jerusalem.

crap map, and a lack of signage, makes for very frustrating journeys. but we got to yad vashem in the end.

it's quite breath-taking, but there were LOTS of people, everyone pushing and shoving, lots of loud children, so it's hard to focus at first.

the material is incredible, the layout is well done, and the items, pictures, videos, and writings are very powerful. the hardest thing to conceive - every time i'm exposed to holocaust material - is that that's us they're talking about. amazing that people can hate so easily, and so quickly, and that 60 years later so many people STILL hate the jews.

we stopped by the memorial to all the fighters, then began our way home.

rush hour. but not too bad, and we made it back to herzeliya in excellent time. had ice-cream in cinema city (nothing interesting to buy, and the one movie i want to see is hebrew only), then went shopping in the centre of herzeliya. bought stuff. had supper. had coffee at the cousins'. came home.

today:

i'm having difficulty waking up. we're going to a house of mourning, for SSSO's grandmother, and in the afternoon - our graduation ceremony. can't say i'm not excited. and nervous... and i don't own a white shirt. great.

i'm probably going to go back to bed.