We've had the internets back for a few weeks now. My step-father was kind enough to mail us one of his beta Sprint mobile internet USB devices. However, I have to over night it if he is requested to return it to stock. Hopefully by then we'll be able to afford our own. I'm really hoping that there will be some hot cable offers just before analogue switches to digital. T wants to get a converter box but I'm convinced there will be some great deals just prior to the switch.
In other news, T just completed his first week of training at Fred Meyer. Not exactly the most glamorous of jobs, but he'll be pumping gas at Freddies down the street. He's currently training at another building because his store's construction got put on hold during our huge snow storm. For those who were unaware, it is illegal to pump your own gas in Oregon. Yes, sometimes I feel trapped in the twilight zone, here. He wants to pursue obtaining his Oregon plumbing code certification, and eventually his Inspector's license. But for the time being he has a small income coming in, creating a HUGE SIGH OF RELIEF. If it weren't for our amazing new friends, Justin and Dominique, and both of our families, we wouldn't have made it through the last month or so. And by that I mean, we would have our electricity, water and phones turned off.
Two weeks before Christmas began the snow storm of the century, shattering every single record Portland has ever held. Unfortunately, this city is in no way prepared for such things and the whole thing shut down. They didn't use salt to pre-treat the roads, just sand here and there after the fact. Their plows were old and useless; the drivers inexperienced. Major freeways were shut down, most business closed. You were not allowed to use your cars without snow chains. You're only options to get around were the bus or max lines. More than half the bus routes were shut down and the max switches kept freezing over. And you know what? The only damn thing still open was Kindercare! Despite taking two hours to get to there, I still showed up to work every freaking day! My side of town got around 2.5-3 feet of snow accumulation. You can see a few photos of it here: The media dubbed 'Arctic Blast 2008
. After 2 weeks of being snowed in, it was all washed away in a couple days by rain. And now the whole area is flooding by, (gasp!) our record breaking rain fall. Hello global warming!
Christmas just wasn't the same this year. Without traveling back east to be with my family nor being able to give gifts, the day left me yearning for more. I managed to pull enough money together to make a batch of cinnamon rolls to give to those friends and family who helped us through the last few months. I tried my best to recreate my families traditions, but the most I got from is was me preparing and serving Christmas brunch for T's brother's household. Who were 2 hours late. As far as gifts go, my mom got me a TomTom navigation system along with a few other smaller things. I can't wait to use if our summer road trips. Dave got us some gadgets for our Wii, and Emilie got me a bottle Giorgio Armani's 'Blue' Eau de toilette. I smell so yummy now! I can see myself going through the stuff fairly quickly.
Last weekend our friend Rich from San Diego drove up to visit us and go snow boarding on Mt. Hood with T and Dave. It was great to see him again. He also visited us back in September. His brother, Brad and his family are planning to drive up to visit for T's birthday in February. And Fernando is planning to fly up at the end of next summer.
Our New Year's was ok, nothing spectacular. We tried to make it down town, ended up waiting for a bus (all mass transit was free that night) for 1/2 an hour in the cold, wind, and rain, finally got on it 10 minutes to midnight, found out as soon as we'd get down there, we'd have to turn around and come back. Hopped off at the next stop, walked back to the apartment. Clinked glasses at midnight, walked (still in the yucky weather) almost a mile down the road to hit up a local brewery, only to discover they were already closed. On the way back, in desperation decided to stop by our local 'Chinese restaurant and lounge' to have 2 rounds of drinks, where my vodka tonic was 4/5 vodka, 1/5 tonic and the DJ was the 50's something Chinese owner who gave Rich a hard time for requesting 'Baby Got Back' and passed out around 4 am. My only resolution this year is to complete my 101 in 1001. My dead line is approaching mighty fast. It would probably be a good idea to figure out exactly what that date is.
I've spent the majority of the day watching movies and now I'm wasting time waiting for T to get home from work. I think tomorrow I'm going to take down the Christmas tree and decorations and hopefully be a little more productive than today. After the hustle and bustle of the last few weeks, it's nice to slow down and spend some time in the peace and quiet, with out the TV on (with the exception of movies) or entertaining guests. It will be hard to adjust back to a full time work schedule next week, but the change is welcomed. My sleeping and eating habits are all over the place from the lack of schedule.