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Last Visit 2013-12-31 12:00:11 |Start Date 2005-05-26 16:50:55 |Comments 1,821 |Entries 581 |Images 1,362 |Videos 10 |

Category: potpourri

07/21/07 01:48 - 63ºF - ID#40188


local time: 8:50am

I got the happy news this morning; they found my luggage! Now I have clothes to wear to work tomorrow!

I found a place to get my SCUBA certification. I'm so excited I'm getting ahead of myself with all the additional courses I want to take. I've already done an experiential dive in the Red Sea so I'm ready to just start with Open Water certification. The others I'm interested in are Ocean Buoyancy (because I had some issues with hitting the floor everytime I breathed out), Fish Identification (they have some kind of conservation project going on), Underwater Navigation (seems like a natural thing to want to know), Underwater Photography (bet you can't wait for these photos!), and Wreck Diving (which first requires Advanced Open Water certification).

That's all for now. My day has only just begun and I'm sure some new adventure awaits. OH - and I got invited to my first house party last night, yay! He has a liquor license too, so I'll finally get a beer! Ciao.

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Permalink: SCUBA.html
Words: 175
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

07/20/07 08:46 - 60ºF - ID#40171

lost luggage....again

local time: 3.33pm
temp: 111 degrees

I just woke up which is a very bad thing. I wanted to sleep in today but I certainly didn't mean to sleep this long! It's not helping the jet lag. Today is 'Saturday' for me. Their weekend is one off from ours. Friday is the holy day.

I was grabbing some very expensive sunscreen at the store last night when I noticed...they sell Playstation2 and Wii at the grocery store! You can just take it off the shelf along with the games, no locks. The Wii cost 1,599 rys and the PS2 cost 529 rys. So that's $445 and $147 respectively. Pretty much the same. Score :)

I'd love to give you a tour of my home and surroundings however my camera cord is in my luggage. My luggage which is missing. They don't even know what country it's in. They tried to track it and it literally says, "unknown location, tracking continues". I just moved here and 98% of the clothes I own are in that bag. I think they give it 10 days before they finally say 'we lost your bag'. Qatar Airways said they wouldn't give you anything for delayed bags if you live in the country. I don't' know what BA's policy is, hopefully I'll hear something soon.

Meanwhile I just bought a headset so I can use Skype to make internet phone calls. If you want to talk to me for free, you can do the same :) The only thing we'll have to consider is the time zone.

Oh, I did get to see Transformers last night, which I enjoyed. I thought it was especially sweet when the opening scene said "Qatar-the middle east" and people in the theatre started clapping. Movie theatres here are relatively the same. With the exception that people don't really make lines to purchase so it's a little chaotic. Also a screen shows the seats and you actually choose them. They are assigned seats! They were big and red and super-duper comfy!
Ciao for now.
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Permalink: lost_luggage_again.html
Words: 335
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: about doha

07/19/07 10:00 - 70ºF - ID#40165

i have a tea boy!

Today we attempted to clear more HR paperwork but things run a little slow around here. I submited my medical papers, filed for an employee badge and handed over my passport to process my visa. The latter makes me a bit nervous. I don't like being without my passport.

Tonight 2 of my co-workers and I are going to see Transformers at the City Centre. It's a complex that houses 14 theatres, a bowling alley, enormous grocery store, restaurants, and an ice skating rink. Who knew!? Then hopefully when our movie is finished our bags will have finally arrived and we can pick them up from the airport.

We got these serious looking phones installed in our offices today. The guy gave us a 5 minute lesson how to use them but I'm pretty sure I didn't make it passed 'press the envelope for voicemail'. I've got plenty of time to figure it out. I don't even know how they want us to answer them.

We have a 'tea boy' in our office that checks in on you as soon as you arrive and periodically throughout the day. Today I had a glass of mango juice. I took a picture, which you'll get to see at a later time when my camera cable arrives. We've already been joking about all our 'historical moments' together, so I have somehow become the group photographer. Guess it's a good trait to have a camera attached to your hand eh?

I learned something about Islamic burials last night. Mohammed had pointed out a cemetery. I told him I would like to see it in daylight. I have a thing for cemeteries. I think they are peaceful, I like taking photos and drawing them, I like to think about my life and remind myself to LIVE in the short time we're given. Mohammed was explaining to me that they bury people very quickly here because it is a greater honor to the deceased. Also they feel you should leave the world the way you entered, naked. So they have a special person to wash the body, then they simply cover it with a white sheet. This is how they present it for viewing. Then a narrow hole is dug with another hole inside of it. I'll try to draw to explain:
They place the body in the smaller hole, then cover it with earth bricks, then fill in the main hole with dirt.

Also, they don't mark the graves with names because you don't visit cemeteries to mourn. You may mark it so you know where one is but you would not go there to 'talk' to that person. You would go to a cemetery to think about your life and how you want to live it and to talk to God. I thought this was very similar and interesting.

I'm reminding myself to tell you the story of the red car. Mohammed told me today and I couldn't stop laughing. Some things just get lost in translation you know :)
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Permalink: i_have_a_tea_boy_.html
Words: 503
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: travels

07/18/07 08:01 - 66ºF - ID#40152

i made it!

So here I am in Doha, Qatar. Transit time: 26 hours. I flew Buffalo to Boston to Londond to Bahrain to Doha. The best part is 2 of my 3 pieces of luggage made it with me! I had to laugh though because neither of them really had my clothes in it. I packed so fast and chaotically I had no idea what would be. Perfume, books, a few shoes, a blanket, tea lights/oil holder/burning matches :P

No matter, I'm hooked up to the net now and my 3rd bag should arrive at some point. My apartment is nice and not the gross grey/blue one I was shown during my interview! I'm pretty exhausted so I'm hoping they will let us get out of here for today so I can go take a nap.

Oh, and it's so hot that you don't have to use hot water to take a shower. The sun warms the water in the pipes! Yowza. More later, with pictures and such.

Thank you for all the well wishes!

local time: 3pm
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Permalink: i_made_it_.html
Words: 178
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

07/14/07 03:21 - 77ºF - ID#40105

until we meet again

Um, yah so I just got a call from my future boss. I have to leave MONDAY!!!! Holy crap. I'm not done packing. I'm not done taking things and putting them into storage. I think I'm going to vomit. Some how they processed my visa on the contingency that my police clearance will be OK. So kids, I guess this is ciao time. Until we meet again.
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Permalink: until_we_meet_again.html
Words: 67
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

07/13/07 05:36 - 72ºF - ID#40098

a lesson from Luna Lovegood

I'm moving half way around the world. I have to fit my life into 2 duffel bags and a backpack. There are people I really want to say good-bye to. However I have to acknowledge the fact they obviously don't care to say good-bye to me as they have ignored me for the last 6 weeks. That makes me sad.

I'm only half way through my authentication process on both my diploma and fingerprint report. I'm not supposed to be able to get my visa without the finished document with the stamps from Qatar. Yet, the woman from HR sent me an e-mail today with an attachment titled 'permanent visa'. The note read: "Your department has made living and travel arrangements on your behalf. I trust you have your itinerary."

I feel nauseous. I hope they don't expect me to fly out on Monday! I'm not ready. I thought I'd been rescheduled because of my delay in paperwork. How do I pack my life away in 2 days. Say good-bye? I just don't care anymore. There are few people that even seem interested in the fact I'm leaving and cared to spend any time with me before I go. (thanks for the kind letter (e:metalpeter)).

I've had more friendships break up. I'm beyond caring about it. I'm weird, I'm quirky, I'm sensitive, I'm goofy, I'm clever, I'm blunt, I'm giving and just sometimes I talk bad about people that piss me off. Like it or don't. I don't need to try to convince anyone that I'm worth spending time with. Life moves at a fast pace and if the current takes you away from each other that's just the way shit's creek works ain't it?

You don't have to tell me things will be good when I get where I'm going. I know they will. It doesn't make it hurt any less to know people you cared about can walk away from you without so much as a 'bye' uttered from their lips. Again, just the way shit's creek flows and I just lost my oar. Gotta go with the current or you'll drown flighting it.
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Permalink: a_lesson_from_Luna_Lovegood.html
Words: 354
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

07/05/07 03:55 - 78ºF - ID#39927

back from houston

Just drove in this afternoon. I can't take anymore screaming babies for a few days. Gonna head back to my pad in b-lo, crawl into my bed and either pass out or play video games. I need my alone time. I can't wait to sleep in MY bed, alone. Lots to do tomorrow. I'll talk about my travels soon. Ciao.
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Permalink: back_from_houston.html
Words: 60
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

06/30/07 02:13 - 72ºF - ID#39865


I admit it. I was bested in Wii Golf last night by (e:joshua).
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Permalink: golf.html
Words: 14
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

06/29/07 02:23 - 71ºF - ID#39846

oy, this visa

Yesterday I had my appointment to take care of all my medical testing. Bill: $279. I got my physical, vision tests, chest x-ray, urinalysis, shots and blood work done. Pisser of it was I had to fast for one of the blood tests. By the time they got around to sucking out 5 vials of blood I hadn't eaten in 16 hours.

I didn't just have a little 'faint'. I checked out of that hotel for a good 2 minutes! The last thing I remember is telling the nurse, "I'm starting to feel dizzy", then I slumped over in the chair. When I came to she was holding me upright by my forehead with an icepack. I was soaking wet with sweat. I couldn't see or hear anything.

Slowly I could begin to make out sounds and a silhouette. Apparently they were trying to get me to take a cup of orange juice but I couldn't see it and I was so weak I could hardly lift my arm. They wheeled me into a room and put me on a bed. 15 minutes later I finally had enough colour in my face so they let me sit up. It was fun and all but I felt like I was on drugs the rest of the day.

Today I had to tackle the fingerprinting. I finally got my card from Albany. Dropped $15 for some guy to ink me downtown and another $50 to send it back to Albany.

Then I went to the Registrar's office at Canisius to work on my diploma authentication. I thought I had to get a certified copy of the original, like everyone else, but noooooo. New York State requires the actual diploma, so now it's going to get all messed up with signatures and stamps. They want $30 for a replacement copy for myself.

I dropped another $3 for the county clerk's signature, $10 for the State to verify the county clerk is for real and another $7 for US to verify the State is for real. This will probably take 3 weeks with the use of Fed Ex overnight super expensive service.

Hey, at least I made some progress before I head out of town! I fly to Houston tomorrow so I can say good-bye to my thousand relatives and help my mom drive her 'new' car home. Which is ironic because she doesn't drive really.
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Permalink: oy_this_visa.html
Words: 390
Location: Niagara Falls, NY

Category: potpourri

06/27/07 03:49 - 86ºF - ID#39829

i been thinkin about my doorbell

when you gonna ring it, when you gonna ring it?

theecarey messaged me with this and it reminded me i didn't mention the funnies of sunday afternoon.

someone came in through our outer front door and stole the doorknobs off our front doors. for serious. they were the fancy ornate ones like pmt have on their door, traditional old buffalo home knobs. yep, walked right in and yanked them bitches off the door.

i wonder if it's the same pecker heads that stole my bike.
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Permalink: i_been_thinkin_about_my_doorbell.html
Words: 85
Location: Niagara Falls, NY



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