Monday, February 23, 2009

Random news

* It's the hot season but the last three days we have had rains. Lana and her friend who is here visiting from Germany saw dolphins in the bay at Batu Ferringhi and the locals say that is a sign of the monsoon rains to come - who knows?? So with the rain of these past days and the intense heat, the humidity is off the charts. To say its toasty warm here is an understatement, believe me!

* Our plans for the trip to Vietnam are coming along nicely thanks to the parents of some dorm students who live in Hanoi. They've booked us a hotel and got us on a two day boat tour of Ha Long Bay. We are sleeping on the boat ... which makes me wonder about bathroom facilities. Hmmmmm......

* I am heading to Bandung, Indonesia, again for a quick weekend trip as a female chaperone for a science class. We'll be visiting the volcanoes in the area and I may be able to connect with our friends whom we saw over Christmas.

* I got my dress for JSB. I know that may not be a big deal to most of you but here in Asia, my size 10 turns into an XL and formal dresses that size in my color and style aren't hanging off every rack.

* We have strawberries in the freezer! A couple headed up to the Cameron Highlands on the weekend and took orders for strawberries that are grown up there. We can buy them here on the island but for some reason, the 13 km drive across the bridge drives the price out of our range. We bought 10 containers - two for the amahs and eight for us so strawberry shortcake is on the menu for Wednesday's treat night.

* Kaleb and I are now big fans of Malcom Gladwell, having ready Outliers over Christmas and Blink this last month. I know we are reading his books in backwards order but they do stand alone for the most part. We love his writing and his keen mind. With all he discusses in his books, Kaleb and I are never without material to talk about, argue over and digest. Now I have to find Tipping Point!!

* Speaking of books, I also consumed Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns in the past few weeks. Outstanding, both of them. They helped me understand some of the issues that people in this part of the world face every day. And I also read F Scott Fitzgerald's short story, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button and then endured the movie. To say the movie is loosely based on the book is an understatement...the only things that are the same are two characters, one named Benjamin Button and the other named Daisy and okay, maybe the fact that BB lives his life backwards. I did think the movie was well acted - it just wasn't remotely associated with what I had read. That's Hollywood for you.

* My other reading is the book of Esther since I'm in Beth Moore's bible study on Esther's life. It's great stuff and believe it or not, I look forward to doing the daily homework! Now that's not something you hear everyday, especially from my dorm students :)

* I forgot to mention that hot season is driving the cobras and other slithery things off of upper field so we are to be on the lookout. That means being a bit more cautious heading outside to my laundry area but so far, no troubles. I don't mind them at all, as long as I see them first but my preference is to avoid them all together. Oh must run, the monsoon winds are coming - the mango seeds and coconuts are dropping off trees like crazy and I've got laundry on the line! Bye for now......

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