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8 Things About Me

Eight Things About Me. Yes, I have been tagged.
What do I write? Ewe gave me no hints. Argh. I’m a lawyer, I need instructions!!
Sigh.
Well, I’ve revealed various food-related facts about myself before, so let’s make this not about food…

1. I cannot ride a bike. Yes, it’s true. My learning to ride a bike around age 5 got cut short when we moved just after I got training wheels. For a year or so we were in my grandparents’ house, and my parents, who would otherwise oversee all of our bike-riding activities, were a little overtaken by the baby (one-and-only-brother) and trying to renovate what was to be our new and permanent home. Later on, after we’d made the final move, the younger siblings learned to ride, but somehow I didn’t. It hasn’t seriously affected my life though. I don’t think.

2. I can, however, ice-skate. Well, I can lace up ice-skates (this is an accomplishment in itself!) and move without holding on and (mostly) without falling down. In a forward direction. I think this is a significant achievement for someone who has spent almost all her life in the tropics where there are no ice rinks. We all learned during a few summers spent at Penn State University, State College, where there was a rink and summer coupons!!

3. Every 3 years, Dad would take study leave for a summer and take the whole family to some University in the US where we’d be on holiday and he’d research. The choice of university was dictated by Dad’s mathematical field of study and was very often in a very quiet, small and non-tourist town. Well, there was that summer in Vermont, which is usually touristy, but not – definitely not – in summer. So my experiences with the US as a visitor were not typical of many of my friends at the time who visited relatives in the bustling cosmopolitan metropolises. We scoped out libraries and parks. Lived in those libraries and reveled in long summer days where we could stay outside forever in those parks. The parents made sure to plan trips on the weekends. Long drives, visits to historical sites and nature-touristing. We attended gatherings of graduate students and faculty from all over the world, where the food was always new and interesting (darn, I said no food!!). We pretended to do homework. And always, in those small towns, there would be – “Trinidad? is that in Jamaica?” “Wow, you speak English so well”… But the parts of the country we got to see, in Virginia, Pennsylvania and Vermont, the trips through upstate New York and going up to Montreal (I know this is in Canada), Massachusetts, were beautiful. The perfect relaxing vacation for me can now just consist of a long drive through beautiful country.

4. I learned to ride horses, English-style. Didn’t get to the stage of learning to groom and saddle them up, but I did learn how to hold the reins through the fingers, to trot, with the foxing (that starts off being bumped (hard) by the horse everytime you go down when the horse goes up) and even galloping. I have not, however, done this in a really really long time.

5. I cannot study in silence. I can study very well in the middle of talking, laughing people. Absolute silence and the absence of people makes me feel lonely and unfocused when I am trying to read heavy material. I like talking through things I am studying even if the person listening doesn’t have a clue about the subject matter. I think it comes from being part of a family of 4 children where for many years our study areas were in the same big room, or next door, or we just kept each other company while we did homework or crammed for exams.

6. I am a night person. A serious night person. I can never do homework or study, or write a paper or anything like that, while the sun is up. Unless of course, I started before it rose. I get clarity at night and can resolve things in my head, clean, organise, do laundry, even cook, before I go to bed. Everything takes much longer in the morning. I think my working at night preference is linked to my childhood, where we had a long commute to and from school. So when we got home, we were a bit tired and it would take us some time to cool off, shower, eat, relax etc before we’d start on homework. Homework therefore never got started till it was dark.

Two more, eh? Right…

7. The first city I ever lived in was Toronto. I was there for a semester exchange during my final year undergrad, August to December and I lived practically at the corner of Bloor and Spadina. I loved it. I loved the city feeling. Living in what must surely be the centre of everything. Being in a high-rise building and watching a city wake up in the wee hours of the morning, and start moving before it was even properly light. The hustle and bustle of commuters, businesspeople, students and tourists all using the same big streets and contributing to the chatter and voice of the city. I have since held a deep fascination with living in a big city. In Trinidad, I live in a semi-rural area, but it’s a small island, even our cities aren’t quite the same. While I love the calm and beauty of natural rural surroundings, there’s still that draw – it’s very cliched, but walking through a city, I always feel like it is a distinct living entity, and it’s amazing to be part of it.

8. The first time I saw snow I was in Toronto (see no. 7) and I thought it was the aftermath of a chemical explosion. Seriously. I was standing in one of the UofT offices waiting for someone to print something. I looked out the window and saw these swirls of flakes moving very fast on the wind. I have to admit my first thought was that some factory somewhere had an accident and these floating substances were dangerous chemicals that would blanket the city. (Did I list an overactive imagination? I should have…). I oh-so-casually remarked “what’s that?” and someone looked up and said “oh, snow flurries already?”. Ah. I’d always imagined snow fell straight down. And then you saw it on the ground, all white. This idea that snowflakes could just exist in airborne whirlpools, that never settled anywhere, and didn’t pile up on everything like in the movies…bizarre.

Ok. I made it to 8. Whew. I am supposed to tag people now?? Seriously? Ewe is done. She’s tagged Lilandra. I’ll claim a small social circle. Unless Sarina or Cynthia want to give us 8 Things?

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12 Comments so far (Add 1 more)

  1. Ok, you’ve just put my list to shame. This is brilliantly done. Really. :-)

    I believe I was one of your fellow-night owls… :-)

    And I remember seeing the flurries start to fall outside my International Trade class at U of Edinburgh – I was totally fascinated, as were the other warm-weather people, as I’d never actually seen it fall (since I was a tiny little thing, anyway). The professor threatened to pull the curtains if we didn’t snap out of it.

    1. ewe_are_here on July 6th, 2007 at 8:29 am
  2. it’s the clarity that comes with writing at 3 a.m. 😉
    you of course know this, as a fellow night owl, who gave me regular confirmation that other people were also awake in the wee hours, with a mere clinking of ice against glass moving down the corridor

    2. chennette on July 6th, 2007 at 11:41 am
  3. It is so good to learn something about you. I have been tagged for one of these and need to think (lol)

    3. Cynthia on July 6th, 2007 at 11:47 pm
  4. I have to admit I learned all I knew about corporate law from #5, though I won’t pretend I know/knew much. This was an interesting list.

    4. Rone on July 7th, 2007 at 10:11 pm
  5. even so, odds are you remember more than I do…I remember the names of the courses, and the lecturers, and that people talked about shareholders a lot

    5. chennette on July 7th, 2007 at 11:30 pm
  6. Ahhh, corporate law. The cush course for moi.

    6. ewe_are_here on July 8th, 2007 at 10:20 am
  7. Oh, and ice is being clinked in the pitcher for me as we speak… I’m watching the men’s Wimbledon final and G’s making me ice tea. :-)

    7. ewe_are_here on July 8th, 2007 at 10:22 am
  8. I remember the first winter of snow in Toronto, we were so amazed, we went downstairs and looked up in awe….then we began to slip and fall, and all the glory ended.

    8. Cranky Putz on July 9th, 2007 at 12:56 pm
  9. hehe – yeah, the fantasies don’t include things like slush and mud and slippery sidewalks

    9. chennette on July 9th, 2007 at 3:12 pm
  10. me get tagged? 😀 i’ll do it! 😀 but hmmm taking my laptop to F1 Monday morning so i ‘ll post it when i get it back 😀 okie? :)

    10. The TriniGourmet on July 13th, 2007 at 9:57 pm
  11. I can’t believe I’d never read this post before! We totally have the “children of academics” traveling thing in common–my dad did his masters in podunk Arkansas and we got to go exciting places, like… Oklahoma and Kansas. (And later, much cooler places, too).

    Sadly, I’m no longer a night owl; running in the mornings cured me of it. Being a morning person is so much less poetic.

    Also, I didn’t learn to ride a bike till I was a teenager and I’m impressed you can ice-skate; I’d break a leg instantly.

    11. Laura Georgina on March 15th, 2011 at 3:33 pm
  12. Hey Laura – yeah, whenever we came back from one of those trips people would ask, you went where? why? but they were cool. And it meant that I have spent a lot of time on campuses, more campuses than I was actually a student at!
    I wonder how I’d stand up on skates now – those things are heavy…

    12. Chennette on March 16th, 2011 at 1:29 pm

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