Monday, August 30, 2004

Jen's story of the day:

Saturday night was fast approaching and all was going well. Word on the street had it that some of Jen's workmates were going to be at "The 3 Sisters" (a bar, not relatives) on Saturday night.

And I officially find writing in the third person awkward.

Yeah, so someone at work told me that he and some people (not sure if other co-workers or friends or what) were going out on Saturday night and would probably go to The 3 Sisters. I was told I should make an appearence. Word was passed onto Shannon, and yes, it was decided we would make the elusive appearance. So we arrive at the bar and I am REJECTED for my lack of ID. (In my own defense, I have never been IDed there before and when I do take my ID with me I take my student card which, we were told, is not adequate for entry into this bar.)

I was left thouroghly disapointed. (And unable to spell.) And pissed. Because in true Jen fashion, rejection = bitterness and revenge.

I needed a plan.

First we went to Finnegan's Wake to hear one of our fav bands, The Mockingbirds. It was early and we like to stuff they play later on better, so we left and worked our way down the Grassmarket. We step into a bar (Buddy Mulligan's for those paying attention and care for some cooky reason) and I go to the bar to get a drink. A bloke was drinking and blocking the bar, so he stepped aside for me and proceeded to talk to me. He looks older than me. Older as in he wouldn't get IDed. Somehow, it ended up Shan talked to him and Keri was talking to his friend and I got bored and started wandering about. (I must confess, I actually left the bar and went in one next door to see if I would recognize work people. Some people may call this desperate, I call it keeping oneself occupied as one can only make so many solo rounds around a bar before she looks too out of place and loserish.)

Anyway, to make a long story short, eventually I walked into the 3 Sisters with absolutely no problem and not even a second glance from the bouncers. This was done by pulling back the large curly into a more... non-large ponytail, wearing Shannon's coat, and holding the hand of the previously mentioned older looking guy that I had met at the previous bar. Meet your match, Mr. Bouncer. Although the MacPhail blood is of majority, the stubborn-Dixon blood still flows through me.

Anyway, turned out the work folks weren't even at the bar but I didn't care as I had a good time there and at the following bars.

Oddest compliment of the night: a guy told me I was pretty and that he liked my fingernails. My jagged-edged, partially bitten off fingernails. (Okay, okay, in his defense they were painted bright red and aren't as awful as I make 'em sound.)

In other news, my gym membership has ended and to celebrate I ate many biscuits (cookies) today at work. Mental note: renew gym membership.

Sigh, I wanted to do some email catching up and blogging of higher quality, but typing all day at work makes typing stuff after work undesirable. Blah.

However, I actually got through my pile of work today as the Doctors weren't in. Three cheers for me!

Friday, August 27, 2004

Today is Keri's birthday!

To steal an inside joke from Shannon, I'm sure she will have GRAND night! If she isn't hungover. I'll have you all know that Keri drank a bottle of wine with her lunch. Recognize that (channeling Sean Henessey) Keri gets drunk off one pint of beer. As well, Shields had to work at 5:00. I am officially a tattletale, but in a good way because it's actually funny and I think you will all laugh as well. Yes, that is the sound of global laughter I hear!

So, the job. This job, on a day-to-day basis, is the busiest job I have ever had. I mean, obviously I have been busy at other jobs, but never still working on Wednesday's work on Friday... It's crazy. Once I start to think that I will maybe catch up, I realize no, because I ran out of desk space and put some of the stuff on the floor. Whoops. Oh well, I'm learning lots of new words (flexion, Appley's test, bilateral knee pain, and lots more complicated ones that I look up in a dictionary) and seeing lots of awful pictures. The dictionary I look words up in has some pictures... I have officially seen syphillis and genital warts and I assure you all they are not pretty. And by not pretty, I mean absolutely freaking vomit-inducing awful. Listen to me kids: STDs (or STIs as the are sometimes known) are not pretty. Only YOU can prevent forest fires... I mean, syphillis from spreading.

Anyway my time is almost up! But two things to note: today I some of the army boys at work eating cheese from a tube. You want to know what is gross? Cheese in a tube.

I've also saw two people eat "crisp sandwiches today" which is exactly what it sounds like: some chips in a roll. Three cheers for healthy eating!

Til next time...#

Tuesday, August 24, 2004

Ooooh yeah.

You know who is awful with medical terms?


I know, how terribly surprising. But apparently I'm doing quite well given the fact I have virtually no training on audio typing or medical terms!

And lets discuss the bonus of this whole army base thing. See, I thought I was just working in a wing devoted to the gents and lasses returing my duty - but no! I am actually working in the medical centre on an army base. No, I do not see any disgusting injuries with people rushing in holding limbs. (Believe it or not, not too many bombs blow up on this base... ;) ) So, the majority of the staff in my building are men. Many young men. Putting up with 40+ year-old construction men and being unemployed has paid off. My job pays well and the view is fabulous. ;) And now, to use one of my lines from the Quote Wall currently being developed at our flat: I NEED A PLAN.

Other than this, I had a great weekend! Friday night was taking it easy and Saturday night was, surprise surprise, devoted to the bar scene. Walkabout, I salute you as my new favourite place to dance. I also salute your outstanding job on drawing in the good-looking blokes on Saturday evening. (This is why we like high tourist season.)

So in an effort not to sound like my hormones are running out of control (they really aren't, I just like trying to make the folk at home jealous - and I am the least successful of us girls with the blokes) I will now say something non-boy related. I will prove just how small PEI is. A girl from PEI, Shannon, stayed at our flat on Saturday night. She has a blog. I looked at her blog and she has pics from a toga party at Bloomingpoint. Of course, being PEI, I probably new 85% of the people in the pictures. And those I don't know? I'm sure I know someone who knows them.

Things that are usually great but suck right now: e-messenger. Sigh, work damn it!

Another thing to note: there is free shampoo, body wash and hand lotion for use at my gym. The shampoo smells soooo good and I want to eat it. Nae worries, I won't.

More good news: my parents are coming soon! Wooo!

Off I go...

Friday, August 20, 2004

Holy ambitous, Batman!

Today I set my alarm for 7:20. I had breakfast and, gasp, cleaned up the kitchen. (We have lots of visitors coming and going and sometimes it's more fun to neglect dishes and talk with travellers. Completely understandable, of course.) Then I cleaned the bathroom! I'm so proud of me. Once the bathroom was sparkling, I headed to the city centre with passport, bank info, etc., in hand and finalised my job details for next week. Then I went to the gym. Now I am at the library and bloody hungry. This afternoon I may go on a free tour they are giving of the Royal Mile. It's not so much the sights I want to see as I have seen them many times over already, but I'm interested in hereing the stories that go along with the hike. Then I will become smart and educate my parents via the same stories when they come and visit in September!!

Yesterday I learned why the brits drive on the left side of the road. It dates back to the horse-transport days. Since many people are right handed, travelling on the left side of the road allows the "driver" to reach for his sword and attack the person coming up on the other side, if necessary.

Fun games to play with my pics:
  • Count the number of times I'm wearing my Brooklyn shirt. (In my own defense, I don't have many long-sleeve shirts to wear when it's cold.)

  • Note the contrast between my skin and Shan's skin.

  • Count the number of pictures you think, gasp, WEREN'T taken at a bar.

  • Realize that I haven't gotten my hair cut in, like, eight months and it starts to look more crazy as the pics get more recent.

  • Sigh at the lack of sunny skies in most pics. Sigh.

  • Realize that digital cameras mean you take many, many pictures that you would never take on a real camera because digital means no developing fees. (At least not on a per-picture basis.)

  • Note I gained half a chin sometime in mid July.

Yeah, anyway. I posted every single picture that I didn't delete from my camera. This bothers some people (Shannon) because it means I post/don't delete pictures that I think I look good in regardless of how the others look.

Today I filled in stuff so I can get free samples. Problem: many North American companies do not send free samples to the UK so there should be a good pile of 'em waiting for me at home when I "do" PEI in December.

Lets discuss the use of the verb "do". In Europe, you don't visit or travel within a country. You "do" a country.

"I'm going to try and do Austria before the end of the month."
"Yeah, she's doing New Zealand after she moves home."
"I'm doing Eastern Europe for a few weeks."

And you now get the point. I'm flying into Halifax when I get home. Maybe I will DO Halifax for a day or something. Oh, oh, maybe I'll make a daytrip and do Summerside.


I have a bank account now. That's a good thing.

Anyway, if this is half as boring to read as it is to type then y'all must be very bored. On that note, adios!

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Och aye!

Guess who finally snagged herself a wee job?

Bloody hell, took long enough, eh?

So, get this: I will be primarly an audio typist. Seriously. Me, the deaf girl who can hardly make out some of the crazy accents here! Is this not going to be a riot or what? Luckily I have my MacPhail wit and Canadian charm to help me out.

Yesterday Keri and I were going to accompany Natasha to Hadrian's Wall to take in some England-based roman ruins. However, the £70 train ticket was very unenticing so Keri and I headed for St. Andrew's instead. The town is very small and we managed to walk/run almost the whole thing in about 2 1/2 hours. We hit the St. Andrew's Cathedral (dating back to the 1100s), a castle (also very old), walked into the British Golf Museum (note we did not tour it, we merely walked into it), wandered the beach briefly (talking walked by it for 30 secs since it was raining), ate ice cream cake (it was harder than a bullet), snapped photos, etc.

We also ran to the University of St. Andrew's. You may think the name sounds a wee bit familiar. That is because it the uni attended by Prince William. I am pretty sure he saw Keri and I standing by the fence snapping photos but was too shy to speak to us.

The campus, like many others, is actually spread out over town. Luckily, the building for metaphysics and logic was easily found. Note sarcasm.

My one regret is not buying a Uni of St. Andrew's shirt in the bookstore. Sigh. But I'm sure I can get one at some point. I really liked the shirt - good cut, nice colours, etc. Anyway, I am wasting precious blog space. ("Shirts are preeeetty!")

In other good news, I am uploading more pics as we speak. Or, as I type. Note address: This address is essential to know if you want to get into heaven. I hear God is really keen on my pictures and actually uses them as postcards when he (she?) is writing to Buddah.

Keri is unemployed this week. Honestly, it was sooo nice to have company and not just mope about by myself all week. However, I hope she snags herself a fabulous job soon.

Then we (Shan, Keri and I) will all have lots of money and do fun things. Like buy slushies. And then drink the slushies. And then, since we finished our slushies, go and buy ANOTHER ONE. I have great plans for us.

But seriously, we have lots to do! Lots of people are leaving and/or having birthdays and there is much travelling to be done before December. Speaking of December, I took the plunge and bought my ticket home. And back here. If I decide I don't want to come back to Scotland there will be a very simple solution: "miss" my flight. Right now I fully intend on using the return portion, even if only to do a wee bit more travelling.

Apparently there will be lots of army boys where I work. I will be working at the hospital they go to when they are discharged... Hopefully with limbs still in place. Okay: so I have worked on two construction sights and now a hospital with army rats. Am I destined to never work with females? Well, I have worked with females, but I keep being placed in positions where there are primarly men crawling about. Am I supposed to meet my Scottish "soulmate" (ha) somewhere? I say no, because working around men doesn't mean that they are, you know, under forty.

Anyway, time to hit my inbox and play catch up.

Mmm, ketchup.

Monday, August 16, 2004

I haven't blogged in a wee while, have I? Ms. Shields' habits must be rubbing off on me. Except I don't cuss like a trucker.

This weekend was good. Friday night was a mini-belated b'day celebration for Shan since her real birthday was on Tuesday - not the best going-out night. The bars around here are open late due to the Festival so we headed home around 3:00. Saturday was just a random day, just doing some stuff. Sat night we made it an early night as we spent all day Sunday volunteering at Fringe Sunday! I had an easy day and didn't really have to do too much. I got to watch quite a bit of entertainment, and now have a list of possible shows to watch during the week.

Today I was a good girl and gave blood. They recommended that I don't really exercise tonight thus I am skipping the gym and will drag Keri to wander around Bistro Square with me hunting for free festival tickets. At the minimum, I will walk inside and see if Cute Guy is working. For some reason many shows aren't playing today so my changes of seeing Cute Guy or getting tickets are, I imagine, quite slim. (I guess the performers are allowed one day off, right? ;) )

Oh, speaking of performers, on Friday night we saw one of the actors from a show Shan and I saw the previous weekend and talked to him for awhile. He was from North Carolina, but did not sound it at ALL. Perhaps because he has been living in London for the past six years.

On Sunday I briefly spoke to performers called the "Hen Men" that are from New Brunswick! One of the guys had actually recently finished a play at the VICTORIA PLAYHOUSE. Seriously. One week PEI at Victoria by the Sea, next week the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Pretty cool, eh?

Oh right, still no job. But that's not really news anymore, just the ordinary!

This Wednesday night there is a Scotland vs Hungary football match! You know what this means, right? The men put on their kilts and Jen puts on her hot-boy radar. Myself and a select group of others (read: our friends) shall find a bar and plunt ourselves down in an effort to mingle with the locals and the throngs of tourists over taking the city. (I actually love the touristness of the city at the moment.)

In missed celebrity sitings this weekend, J.K. Rowling was at the Book Festival and I MISSED IT. HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT IT??? Jeez. And Christian Slater was supposed to appear the Fridge yesterday but made a no-show. (He is doing a play here.) Ah well. I heard Tom Jones singing, remember? So there. I know It's Not Unusual.

The end.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

PS: Dear Father: I hope it's okay that I changed the settings on the photo album to make in public access and posted the link for all to see.

If it's not okay... Well, it's too late to change it now, isn't it? ;)


Another mood swing day. Woo! And the internet is expensive today... I blame the throngs of tourists (whom I actually adore) and the extreme busy-ness of the city. (The y should turn to an i... but then we have business so I decided to use busy-ness for lack knowledge.)

I do not have a job yet but am registering with yet another temp agency today! That means I got to stay up late last night and sleep in. It was actually a flashback to Xmas. I got a puzzle for Christmas and spent many late nights working on it because I am obsessive. So I stayed up until 2:30 last night working on a puzzle Shan had bought awhile back.

Today I also printed off an application form for a job as Canada host at Walt Disney World in Florida. Yaaay!

My thoughts are rather disconnected and I don't have much to say... My digital camera/precious child is filling up with pics so I'll be adding some more to my photo album in due time. (Due time = approx a few weeks.)

My glorious father has created an online photo album!!! It's kind of a family thing, so not all pics will be of interest to everyong but they are located at

I must comment on Mr. Jeff MacPhail cutting the grass. He looks like the freaking Hulk in the picture. I'm glad he doesn't beat me up anymore because it looks like he could kill me.

Also of note is the pictures of the cutest kitty EVER. (Notice that cute is an adjective that describes how he looks. I'm sure he is still as mean and tempermental as ever. But I heart him and miss him regardless.)

And bizarely, I look freakishly skinny in some of the pics. The advantage of having photographer parnets is that you learn at a younger age what the more flattering poses are ;) This is a skill I frequently use.

BRILLIANT BUSINESS IDEA ALERT: I should SELL photography tips to people who don't look comfortable in pics. Seriously, some people are uncomfortable getting their picture taken and it generally shines through.

Anyway, looking at the photoalbum totally made my day! One should also note the "hot" wind-blown hair on grad day. (For those who do not recall, grad day was bloody cold and biterally windy.)

Anyway, end internet time. I have some emails I need to write because I am awfully, awfully behind in them. But this blog is just so much more effective at reaching the masses...


Tuesday, August 10, 2004


I have nothing to do today. Surprise! I also feel poor due to the lack of any sort of income. At least if I was on PEI I could collect EI. Ah well.. Umm.. .optimism? No, not today thank you.

Saw some comedy and stuff on the weekend, but I have only five minutes of internet time so I will just sum it up: some was good, some was bad. The Karaoke Show was the highlight, and it turns out the hot guy that said hi to me before the show was actually IN the show and I can very easily develop crushes on actor-type guys because I wish I was on stage. I also saw him yesterday, it turns out he works at the venue. I will go back today since I have soooo much time on my hands and make him hire me as an assistant to the stars or something.

Oh, and it has rained enough here the past two days to... uh... drown things and stuff. yeah.

time's up...

Happy Birthday Ms. Courtney! I will sit at home and eat cake in your honour.

(BTW, it actually was super sunny and nice on the weekend. I have to give credit where it is due.)

Friday, August 06, 2004

Hee hee hee!

Keri and I have been PUBLISHED.

On Wednesday a guy ("Ed in Edinburgh") wrote into the Metro (a free newspaper) and said, "In order to save myself from embarrassment, what should I call someone from Canada - an American or French?". He was only being cheeky and not serious, but I gave Keri a response: "Dearest Ed in Edinburgh, I seem to be having the same trouble figuring out what to call people from Scotland. Should I call them English or Irish?" And today, the response was PUBLISHED.

You will all receive copies of today's Metro for Christmas.

I registered with another job agency yesterday afternoon, and it went pretty well! I can type 80 wpm, which is very sad. However, I can do this only for a short period of time before a bone in my left hand starts throbbing with pain. The chick I registered with seemed very positive and actually made a call for me right away! So I'm happy. And I did cheer up yesterday. I was just bitterly awful to deal with in the morning.

Last night (after I did the whole gym thang, yo) Keri, Shan and I went to the nice ol' C-Bar. And we have a new person to hang out with! I'm so childish being like, "Yaaaaaaay! New friend!!" but regardless, it's always nice to expand our circle of friends. Of course, it is another Canadian. No wonder I still have trouble making out the Scottish folk at times; I rarely meet any!

Now I'm pouring through the net looking for a cheap flight home. It's an oxymoron, really. Cheap flight home? Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

Shan's arrival home from work today will mark the start of our festival weekend. We have two shows to attend tonight (with a trip to the bar with some others in between), two shows tomorrow, one on Sunday and one on Monday. See? I am becoming CULTURED. By stand-up comedians, no less.

Want me to re-define ambition? I got up at 7:00 today to go to the gym. I wasn't there too long though because there is no reception in the gym and I didn't want to miss a call. Oh, and the fire alarm went off at the gym. It was uneventful and we were allowed back in about ten minutes later.

I wish WestJet flew internationally. Then I could get home for, like, ten bucks or something.*

* Because, you know, ten-dollar flights across the Atlantic Ocean would do great things for WestJet's bottom line.

So what to do with the rest of my day? I ws tempted to lay out in the park and work on my rapidly-fading tan, but the sun has, unsurprisingly, chosen to hide behind one of Edinburgh's many clouds.

Shan thought she saw a mouse in our flat last night, in the kitchen. It was the funniest scream EVER. Her description was "greenish gray and leaf-like". Uh huh. So I used my new-found strength to move the washing machine, (supposedy the "mouse" ran behind it,) and there was nothing there. Bizarrely, Keri was not scared and was all eager to see/catch the mouse. However, if it was an ant she would have flipped out. I am officially the bug exterminator, and Keri handles the rodents. We have yet to determine Shan's position within the Exterminating Organisation.

Anyway, I'm off to do some hard-core flight searching.


Thursday, August 05, 2004

Today is stupid and I am in a bad, bad mood.

Why do I even bother owning a phone since it never rings?

I'm sure most of my job troubles are due to bad timing - but how long can it go on for? My two flatmates COMBINED have not had as many unemployed days as me. Hell, you could probably double their COMBINED days and they still would not have as many as me. Cue bitterness, loneliness and random walks along the streets of Edinburgh that lead to no where. I could admit defeat and spend the afternoon staring at the ceiling of our flat and/or drink myself silly and feel bad for myself but not all hope is lost and I am registering with another agency today.

Being unemployed is boring because I have to ensure I am in an area with reception and not too, too much traffic or I won't be able to hear on the phone.

Low time session warning.


Monday, August 02, 2004

I lost my ambition to write a blog.

I am unemployed. It's depressing.

I threatened to beat up a 13 year-old boy last night. No, I was not drinking. That is also depressing. (I'll type out the story when my ambition returns.)

I bought a new shirt on Saturday. It is the colour of a yellow highlighter. That, my friends, is NOT depressing!

I also bought Snickers spread. It is sooooo good. I find Nutella too chocolately, so the Snickers spread has brilliantly combined peanut butter, chocolate and caramel to make the ultimate toast experience. So far I have used the spread on toast and peanut butter and may have randomly eatened a spoonful or two.

We had a flat warming on Saturday night and I think it went fabulously well! See Shan's blog for more details on the weekend since, if you recall, I don't have the ambition to write a blog.

The end.