adventure, Life, Long Post, Rant, Storytime, travel

The Half Ginger Travels To Japan (Part 1)

Loyal Readers! Let me take you on a true and whimsical adventure of danger and excitement! Gather ’round to hear my epic!

So I am definitely late posting this, as it happened in March. But for Spring Break I traveled to Taito-ku, Tokyo, Japan and stayed in a little hotel in Asakusa. But, it was quite the adventure getting there so let’s jump in.

I drove to my mother’s house on Friday March 10th and didn’t sleep at all that night. I was too excited. My mother had to work, but had offered to make me cookies if I stayed until about 8:30 pm and I decided that that would still give me enough time to get to Calgary and catch my flight (a 5 hours drive). She asked, while the cookies were coming out of the oven when my flight was leaving, and I went to check my email to find a new email from United (I knoooooow) telling me my tickets had been cancelled. Not the flight mind you, for weather or anything, just that my tickets had been. So I called Expedia, because I booked through them. They told me that because they didn’t have my birth date, they cancelled my tickets. They hadn’t called me, emailed me prior, or anything of the sort. Just cancelled my tickets. I asked them to re-book it and they told me they’d have to refund it and wait for it to process back to my credit card, then charge me again. I told them that that wasn’t possible, my flight left in less than 10 hours. I needed it processed now. The woman told me that she would ask to see what we could do. I was on hold for a hour and a half. It was now 10:00 pm. I had even less time than I had given myself in case of construction or bad traffic. They finally got the ticket reprocessed, told me that I was back on the flight and that everything was taken care of. I flew out of my mother’s house and hoped in my truck. Called my dad on the way there to tell him what I was doing and I was ecstatic. I got to the border in about forty-five minutes. The border guard was really cool, wished me a good trip, and as I readjusted my American sensibilities to kilometers; sped into this new foreign country. I was about 50 km in when I noticed that the temperature outside was below freezing, I didn’t think anything of it. It was March, it still got cold in Montana, I wasn’t worried.

I should have been worried. I took the windiest road I have ever been on. In a blizzard. In an active avalanche area. With traffic that didn’t comprehend that I had never driven in Canada before. It’s different, I don’t care what anyone says. Charter buses DO NOT care what the speed limit is. So, the speed limit drops down to 40 km (25 mph) due to the weather.  Or at least that’s what I thought the sign said. I was sliding all over the road, I wasn’t doing more than that. I glance at the clock and it says 12:00 am. I have enough time. My projected arrival at the airport was 4:30 am. Flight left at 6:10 am. I was five by five.

I took the wrong highway. I took Alberta Highway 22. It’s a highway, I know it is. But it’s also two lanes. It goes through farm land, it’s max speed was 70km with blind corners and scary hills and TONS of wildlife that just wanted out of the blizzard. I could barely see. Now I took this highway because GPS told me to, I wasn’t going to question it because I had never been to Canada before. What I SHOULD have done was taken Highway 3 instead of turning onto 22. It would have led me to 2, and it would have been a straight shot on a proper road with a higher speed limit (I think, if I remember correctly). I couldn’t go 70km because of the blizzard. The wind gusts alone hit my truck so hard I thought I was going to die. Not even being dramatic there, I thought that. Or I was going to get into an accident that mangled my body and no one would be able to use my phone because Canada (my plan does cover it, but still) and I would just disappear into the blasted frozen wasteland that I had surrounded myself with. 2 would have been plowed at least.

For those of you reading the dates and realizing what day the Sunday was, yes, it was Daylight Savings Time. I lost an hour when the clock switched to 2 am and then immediately 3 am. My projected time of arrival was now 5:30 am. I had to be at the desk to check in by 5 am. So I did the unthinkable (Don’t read this part mum). I sped through Canada, literally sped. As fast as my anxiety would allow. There was no one on 22. No one at all expect the occasional semi-trunk, who I would like to think were as nervous as I was and also didn’t want me to be doing the thing that I was doing. 22 led to a country road, that led to another one. I could only rely on my GPS to not get me lost. I was taking hills like a mad man, blaring on my horn when I couldn’t see houses, hoping to save any sort of animal that dared venture into my path. I finally found the highway, but I was still running super late. At this point it was 4:30 and I had 60 km to go. I have to be there by 5:00 am. I drove so slow earlier in the night that making up for lost time seemed impossible. I got stuck behind cars that all decided that the icy roads were more of a awkward zit on the shoulder blade than anything that could actually do someone harm. I’m doing 120km in 100km areas, and I’m still going to slow for most of traffic. My eyes are glued to the road, the signs, and the clock in my truck all at the same time. My heart starts to sink into my chest as I realize I’m not going to make it.

Cue Optimist Me, always ready to cheer myself on when I panic (sometimes to cheer myself into a deeper panic). Telling myself that, no, I am going to make it. I am going to get there. I follow GPS to a T, I’m not getting lost, NO WAY. I’ve come this far I’m getting to the airport. I pull into the parking lot, it is 4:55 a.m. I get my things, get out of the truck and run (in boots and a skirt) into the airport, lugging a heavy-ass bag and my carry-on. ROLLING LUGGAGE FOR LIFE. Seriously, the duffle bag cut into my shoulder, bruised my collar bone, and was hard to run through an airport with. I’ve never walked so fast in my life, because airports frown on you running. I check my phone, It is 5:08, I am almost there. I’m sure that if I explain what happened they’ll still let me board.

I stop to ask for directions to the terminal. It’s at the very end of the building. I am not going to be beaten by this. My boots are ticking on the floor as I pull myself around to the check in desk. I tell them my name and they give me the look. You know the look. The look that says “You’re wasting my time. You’ve missed your cut off.” It is 5:12 a.m. Cut off was 5:10 a.m.

I ask if there is anything they can do. They tell me no. At one point I’m pleading with them. I drove all night I tell them, the weather was terrible, my ticket had been cancelled and I needed to get it re-booked and that took time. The woman has heard all of this before. She isn’t going to budge, she can’t she tells me. Policy that check in ends an hour before take off. I tell her I understand that but I got here as soon as I could. She says to me, and I’ll never forget this “You should have made plans to get here sooner.”

I lost my mind for a second, mind you, I haven’t slept for over 24 hours at this point. I shouldn’t have been driving. When I say I haven’t slept, I hadn’t. At all. No naps or anything I was too excited. I’m frantic. I’m crying. I’m an adult woman crying in the airport because they’ve just told me that the flight I’ve been waiting my whole life to take isn’t going to happen, because I was two minutes late to the gate, and now they’ve embarrassed me. I’m asking about other flights. They offer me one to Houston, but I’d have to stay the night in Houston and then leave for Tokyo the morning of the 14th, which means I won’t get there until the 15th. Which kills my entire trip. They refuse to put me on a flight to LAX, which has a spot but they can’t upgrade my to the seat that is available. They won’t put me on the flight to Chicago (which is strangely a direct flight). They refuse to help me. (Uniiiiiiiiiiited).

I call United, they can’t help because it’s booked through a 3rd party. Took them an hour to tell me that. I call Expedia. They (after another hour) put me on the Air Canada flight to LAX (or San Diego, it was one of them) and then I’ll fly out of there. I’ve told my story so fast and so many times that I’ve lost my voice. I go to the Air Canada desk, happy that I have a solution, I have 30 minutes to check in for the flight. Air Canada tells me they don’t have me, and that United does (12 minutes). I go to United, same women mind you, they tell me that they can see it but I have to go to the Air Canada desk(10 minutes). I hurry off again (because the gates OBVIOUSLY can’t be near each other). I now have to wait in line. I get to the front, explain the situation to the very rude french woman at the counter who then tells me that I am a MINUTE past check in time. THE MINUTE I TALKED TO HER, WHILE SHE HELD MY PASSPORT, AND DIDN’T SCAN IT. She then tells me she doesn’t have me in the system anyway. That I’m not in their passenger list (She didn’t even type my name in, didn’t even open my passport). I have the conformation number and emails stating that I am. She tells me that there is nothing she can do and that I need to leave her desk, because I missed the check in time.

I’m dejected. My bag is cutting into my shoulder, the pain is intense. I can’t feel my arm at this point. My phone is almost dead. I’m tired. The lack of sleep is catching up to me. I go back to the United desk. The women are not happy to see me. I tell them again, what had happened. She sighs and brushes her hair out of her face. I hate her face at this point. I hate the other woman too, but feel like we would be friends if our circumstances were different. She’s sweet. Not like the woman and her stupid hair poof in front of me. I ask her what my options are. She gives me the same options as before. I ask, the life probably drained from my eyes at this point, if I can be put on the flight I missed, but for tomorrow. Meaning I would miss a day in Japan, but would not have to go to Houston. She looks at me like this is a new concept to her. The manager is called and after some more bush beating, I’m on that flight. I ask them to upgrade me, they do. I ask them what I should do around Calgary, trying to make the situation light. They eye me and say “What do you mean?”

I tell them that it’s my first time in their city and they seem shocked. They thought I was local. They tell me this holding my American Passport. They tell me this after chastising me for not being on time. I don’t hear what they say, but I know what I plan on doing. I’m going to find a hotel, and go to sleep. Because this nightmare has to be over eventually.

 

End of Part One

 

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Life, Rant, Short Post

The Half Ginger Freaks Out!

So, howdy friends.

Today, I decided that I was going to check on my application to MSU (Montana State, for anyone who thought they would check it out by googling it. Michigan State has the web address msu.edu.) I typed in the password and the username that I was issued to check and I couldn’t find it.

A mirror SHATTERED in my brain. Like the scene in the Labyrinth when the part ends.

labyrinth__crystal_ball_by_lizzychrome-d6vyima
The one that happens after this. I couldn’t gif.

Oh, I freaked out. Couldn’t find it. Raced through my old emails, looking for the receipt from when I paid my application fee, couldn’t find it the first go around. I finally found it, I went to look for the confirmation email that should have been sent when I requested the report for my ACTs. Couldn’t find it. Hurried to the ACT website, logged in (after having to request ALL of my login information again, because… ugh, it’s not one I’m going to remember). There was NO record of my ACT scores being sent to MSU. And that’s when the stone drops. BOOM! In the pit of my stomach, nausea, panic, and worry. So I dropped 34 dollars to re-request it. Normally it would be 12 dollars, but being as old as I am and from taking the ACT in 2008, it had been archived and needed more time to process. 34 dollars I wasn’t going to spend.

Ugh! FINALLY, I frantically searched the MSU website for any answer. I found the “MyInfo” page and decided to give logging in a go. HOLY CRAP IT LET ME IN!

RELIEF!

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non-boyfriends-3phew20reszied

SO I GIVE YOU 4 REACTION GIFS! WORTH IT!

Life, Rant

It’s Been About A Year

 

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So, life isn’t easier, like I thought it would be at this point in my life. I had to leave my job at Plum Creek because I got hurt and I can’t lift what I used to be able to. Means I’ve had to take my job at Teletech back up, which isn’t as bad as young me thought it was. I’m also starting another job soon, I barely make enough to pay the bills I acquired while I had a great paying job. People say life has lots of ups and downs, and this time of year isn’t easy for anyone, especially when you are starting the year without someone you always thought would be there.

 

 

Unlike the passed few years, I haven’t made up my mind about what my resolutions are this year. I feel like I always just proclaim my dreams for the upcoming year, but in my attempt to achieve them, I fail miserably. I guess that is just what resolutions are though. Though, to recap 2015, it hasn’t been all bad. I’m starting a new year one organ short, 3 more inches of hair, and (after much bothering him about him agreeing to let me talk about him here) in love.

He isn’t a new addition to my life, we’ve known each other for years. We’ve been together for a little over a year now. Both of us weren’t expecting the other to show up in our lives again. At least how I see it. Drunk me decided that he’d be a good person to text one night after discussing with my mother my passed relationship and who she actually liked (this topic is not open for further discussion now). So, I sent him a drunk facebook message. And he’s been in my life ever since. For two awkward, proud, and stubborn people we are quite hilarious together. Just this morning I asked him if I should wear a ponytail or a braid. I actually phrased it as “Should I Lara Croft it today?” while holding my hair back, and he said yes. I asked him if he had had a problem with the braid. He said it made me look to Nordic. My response was “We’ll, that’s my heritage.” and he responded “It’s so nordic, it’s like you have an Ikea sofa on your head.” It made me laugh. Which is good. Because I feel like laughter has been missing from my life from a very long time. He tries to bring more fun into my life, says I don’t have enough of it. I’ve replaced laughter and fun with stress and anxiety (they were always there, but they’ve developed to the point of independent space travel if I were to let them venture forth). I will admit, that sometimes I get mad at him. I’m sure at least once he has been mad at me. Like when he laughed at me for crying during The Hobbit: Battle of Five Armies, I told him before hand that it was going to happen and then called him out for being an asshole afterwards. Or… when the angel/doll thing in Krampus came alive. He giggled at me for it, he thinks my fear is silly. I can see where it is silly for him, but it doesn’t make it any less scary. Haha.

He is never afraid to be blunt with me, or honest. I didn’t know how much that meant to me, until it was right in front of me. I know that if I ask him a question, he is going to be direct with his answer. He has tried beating around the bush before, but he is TERRIBLE at it. He brings out the strong and confident person that I am, knows that I can fight my own battles and that sometimes I need help and knows that I won’t always ask for it. He makes me feel smart and has proved me wrong on occasion (AS I HAVE HIM. Alligators and Crocodiles DO NOT give live birth. I WAS RIGHT.) He has brought out things in me that I didn’t know were there. I’ve found a liking to programming and electrical engineering. He has introduced me to new shows that (surprisingly) I like; and new games that I have found enjoyment in. We aren’t perfect, and I never expect us to be, that would be boring. Our imperfectness is one of the many things that I love about him.

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My book challenge did not go as expected. I have read a total of… ZERO books through. I should have planned this better. I’ve started SO many of them, but I haven’t finished any of them. I did take a nice mental health holiday to the coast. Not sure anymore if I’ve spoken about that in past posts. But it was nice to get away from everything. It was a solo trip to Portland, Ore. and Seaside, Ore. I walked the beach every morning, found a FULL sand dollar (FYI: sand dollars have a lot of meaning for me. I had a teacher in high school who gave me three sand dollars for christmas one year, and for some reason, I felt that they meant something special. I found that one on the beach, and I wrote over 15,000 words in a week), saved a crab from a seagull, pronounced myself “Lord of the Crustaceans”, and at certain points, I would just scream at the ocean.

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A huge and purely natural force that I braced myself against and screamed at. Heels dug into the sand and salty wind whipping through my hair and I screamed at the top of my lungs everything I couldn’t stand about my life. And then the wake would go out… and somehow, for a moment it was like the ocean was willing to take that from me and store it away in the depths of itself to help free me from it. But then the ocean would come back and I’d shout at it again. Which is way more poetic that I planned on being about it.

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Hotel DeLuxe in Portland

If I can’t get enough money together to go back to school, I’m buying a one way ticket somewhere and I’ll figure it out from there. It’s the constant feeling that I’m wasting my life, that I need to be somewhere else. But I guess a lot of people feel that way and there isn’t anything special about the way I feel.

 

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Room at the Seaside Inn; booked the Vascasa Vacation Rentals. Super Nice. (Don’t mind the bear, it was a long trip for him.)

Anyway, for everyone out there, have a great 2016. Yours may not be filling with awkward conversations, prozac, and cheap beer; but I trust it’ll be an adventure for us all.

Happy New Year.

The_Wine_Princess_by_angry_feet

 

Life, Rant, Short Post, Uncategorized

Angry (Feet)

So, It has been a month since I left you amazing people with hopes and dreams of me finishing Nano. Well, I didn’t finish, but that’s okay because I’ve had a lot going on. Lately I have been angry about a few things. Don’t get me wrong for the most part, life has been pretty great. I have a job I love, friends and family who love and care about me, a warm place to sleep at night, tasty food, and so on. But there is one specific person who, to my knowledge reads this blog, won’t leave me alone. And this makes me somewhat angry. The title of this post is actually a Tim Minchin song, who I adore. So I borrowed it. The person I am about to speak to will remain nameless for the time being. So, let me begin.

YOU,

You need to stop calling me. You need to stop texting me. Stop trying to be my friend. You make me sound like the villain. Really, you think that that’s going to make me want to talk to you? It’s been a while since I’ve texted you back, I thought you would get the hint. I told you to leave me alone and that I didn’t want to talk to you anymore. Which YOU SHOULDN’T BE SUPRISED ABOUT! It’s your fault this is happening, so quit trying to pin it on me. I didn’t use you for anything, if you remember THAT was your IDEA! What happened a few days later WAS YOUR IDEA! Don’t send me a message that you are lying to my face through. I know the real reason you did what you did so don’t say it was so we could spend more time together! It was because you didn’t want to be around anymore. The fact you lied at the very end, and to what I can only suspect was a few times through to whole thing, and now you are lying to me to try to get me to talk to you, it’s not going to happen. I am trying VERY FRAKING HARD to move on with my life. This is the last time I will ask you to leave me alone. Seriously, knock it off. You wanted this to end and now it’s over. Life doesn’t have checkpoints and life doesn’t have restart buttons. Even if I were to start talking to you, what do you think would happen? Do you think we would really be friends? Seriously? I’m hurt, I’m heartbroken, and I’m incredibly angry over the whole thing. You are not the person I want to talk to. So stop it.

ME

So there you have it. I try not to do things like that, but this is something that needs to stop. Everytime, I get angry. I’m not an angry person. Sure, I may cause I laugh for the people that know this person, but those people are apart of the problem. They laughed and giggled at me the night it happened. I blame three people.

Here is a picture of feet (just to make the post title relevant):

Image
(Photo Courtesy of angry feet @ deviantart)

Actually, that’s a picture of Tim Minchin, who does the beat poem, Angry (Feet). He’s pretty amazing.

Food, Life, Rant

“I love (food), It’s my favorite!”: A Story of Acceptance

So, I’ve discovered recently that I seem to love every single food I eat. I only noticed it when my grandmother mentioned it a few days ago. She said “Well, tonight we are going to have sauerkraut and polish sausage.” I responded “Oh I love sauerkraut, it’s one of my favorite foods!” She kinda gave me this look that I took as ‘Really?’ and said “Kas, you say every food is your favorite food.”

This made me think. Because I don’t think I say that about every food. I certainly don’t say that about Mayonnaise. I hate that stuff, unless it’s in tuna fish. Or swiss cheese, unless it’s melted on a Reuben. Bananas I like if there is ice cream surrounding it. 

I’m going through my food index right now trying to think of a food that I do not like and that I don’t like with anything else. I mean, Greek Yogurt would be an option, but I have never tried it with anything (like fruit and whatnot). I can’t say that I don’t like spinach, because I do, as long as it isn’t cooked. I could say sweet potatoes, but I like sweet potato fries. See, this is difficult.

Squash. It is the only food I can say that I don’t like, and I don’t like it with anything else. Unless you count pumpkin pie. But I’m not going to count pumpkin pie. I don’t exactly love it, it is good, but it is more of Bryant’s favorite pie. So we have discovered something that I do not like. Squash. Maybe one day I will find a dish that I like with squash in it, but until then it is the only food I can think of. 

So, the title says that this is a story of acceptance. In a way it is and I am getting to that, so thank you for sticking with me. 

I have never been a small person. Not in height, not in personality, and certainly not in weight. I am the kid that could have played basketball because of how tall I was. I never played basketball, I just don’t care for it. Being taller than everyone else never played into my favor. I was made fun of a lot. It effected every aspect of my life. I didn’t have many friends, I had three grade school friends as a constant (Erica, Josh, and Ben) and in Middle School I met Dee and Arika. Soon, Josh moved and Ben was in a different grade team than I was on. We still saw each other but it was mostly at football games and lunch. Then Erica left our group, and joined who I have determined to call “Them”. “Them” were people who made fun of your size, the clothes you wore, they way you talked. “Them” made me hate myself and everything about me. I ate to comfort myself and then I would hate myself for eating, because it would never fix the problem. I would go out in the summer, but avoid popular places. I hung out with the same people until I left in the eighth grade. I thought this would a turning point in my life, I was starting a new school where no one knew me and it was going to be different. 

BUT! It wasn’t. I felt the capital letters there would break up the somber mood I wasn’t going for. But I like said this is a story of acceptance. The rest of my junior high year sucked as well. High school got better, the reason being, because I stopped giving a fuck (Mum, I apologise for my use of crass language). It’s true really, I did what I wanted, listened to what I wanted and plain stopped caring about other people. The only person who could decide what I was going to be me, was me. 

I developed a cover for the raw, broken, and insecure girl that I had been. The cover I developed kept her safe and made me appear to be a strong and confident person. The cover didn’t care if people didn’t like me, if people talked about me. And I grew comfortable with it. It’s different when you see other people do something, and it looks so easy. It’s easier to do something when you see yourself do it. 

I know that doesn’t make a lot of sense.  But to me it does. I was able to observe myself doing things. I like to say that I live in both the first and third person. I watch myself do things while I’m doing them so that I know I can do them. That’s the easiest way I can say it. It helped me grow as a person and I am happy with it.

This process helped me understand that it doesn’t matter how much I weigh, how tall I am, or how much I eat that I am just damn fine the way I am. Sure I may be on the heavier side, so what. I think I just needed more room for the awesome. 

 

I still struggle with myself time to time. But I’m the only one who is allowed to put me there. The world is not my oyster, because then everything would smell awful. I have all I need. 🙂

Life, Rant

Stress and Anxiety

For those of you who don’t know, I am a very stressed person. Normally when I say this people get the impression that I don’t know what stress really is because I’m not really that old and that I’ll know more of it when I get older. This is so far from the truth.

I have grey hair. I’m 22 years old with grey hair from stress. And one of them is white! I remember a few short years ago (like 4) I was plucking grey and white hairs from my mum’s head. Now I have them. It must be contagious, the stupid things!

The fact that I get anxious about almost everything doesn’t help either. I am constantly worried. Sometimes I’m not worried about anything in particular, I’m just worried. Bryant calls me a worry wart all the time and it’s true. We all have some title that we don’t like and worry wart is mine.

Just learned the worry wart is actually one word, worrywart. There are just too many right side of the alphabet letters in that for me not to put a space there. My stress has been affecting my sleep lately, I have a million things that run through my mind; things I need to do, things I’ve done, things I regret, people I’ll never get to talk to again, the last things I ever said to those people, how if I’m not doing anything important with my life, so on and so forth.

I think it’s moderately funny that when I do have a job, I wish I could just go home and spend all day in bed, and then when the situation where I don’t have a job comes about all I want to do is work.

I always feel better after writing, or crocheting. However, it has been a pain to do either of those because of the CT. I’m just going to call it that. So BOO! on CT. BOOOO! My fancy magnet bracelet that Bryant bought for me isn’t working like it used too.