February 28, 2009

Requiem for a backpack

While in Australia, it became apparent that I really needed to replace my Jansport backpack. As much as I loved it and had vowed not to get rid of it unless it was falling to pieces, I couldn't ignore that its straps were flatten to about half their original thickness and it was uncomfortable to use for long periods. I decided to get a new backpack when I went to the States last September, which is what happened. While I was slow to move over to the new one, I've been using it for a few months now, so it's time to say goodbye to my old Jansport bag that I used for 13 years.

I've written about my old backpack once before (strangely, exactly 4 years ago), so I won't repeat myself. Here's a photo of what it looked like in the end, complete with some dried-on mud left over from Rock Werchter, the last time I properly used it.

I just tore up the edges of the patches I put on it in 1998; it's definitely a different shade under them. I plan to move at least a couple of the buttons over to my new bag. I'm not sure what to do with the backpack though. It seems wrong to throw it out, but I don't want to hold on to it. In any case, my time with it is done. It served me well.

February 15, 2009

I spent 4 days in the UK and I came back with only one lousy photo

Last weekend I spent some time visiting friends at their house west of London. It was really good to catch up with them and hang out. I only took one photo though, of the juice I bought at Marks & Spencers:

What? I had to get it...

I didn't take one photo of my friends or all the snow still left or their two cute kids. I dunno, I planned to, it just didn't happen. It was a bit tiring, but sometimes quite sweet, to hang around with the kids. They are so outgoing, so the moment I stepped into their house, they were both babbling at the same time about what they were doing and showing me recent owies they had. I enjoyed playing with them, either giving little tickles or playing with toys or puzzles. There was the afternoon I had the girl, the older one, on my lap and her younger brother standing nearby, keeping them busy with Abba videos on Youtube while I tried to have a conversation with their mom. The last night I was there they requested that I read them their bedtime story, so I crowded onto the girl's bed with the boy on my lap, read the story, and then gave them goodnight hugs. It's funny entering a kid's world, where even my clothes were scrutinized. I wore a couple of Threadless shirts while I was there and they always had to ask questions about what was on the shirt: "What's this animal supposed to be?" "Why does the girl have her eyes closed?" Those were the good times at least, there were of course meltdowns and whinging as well, but when they were cute, they were pretty damn cute.

After I came back, I found out that my new glasses (the frames of which I bought in Portland back in September) were ready, so I picked them up Thursday evening. I was so excited to get them since I've had the frames for so long and I was looking forward to the change of wearing them. I've not started wearing them full-time yet, but I'll try to do that tomorrow. Here they are, sort of like my old glasses, but also quite different: