Archive for the ‘Happenings’ Category

Day 3 – A pre-Christmas miracle

December 2, 2012

It snowed today! This is good for several reasons. 1) It means it was warm today (only like -10!), 2) The snow covered all the slippery ice so my chances of falling on my face and/or shattering my spine greatly decreased, and 3) The humidity level was finally higher than 2%, so I didn’t get super dehydrated and my face skin is still in tact! It’s a pre-Christmas miracle!

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Quick update for those of you who I don’t trust enough to be my facebook friends: We went to some sort of Christmas bazar thing today with like, the only other 20 foreigners in the entire country. I bought some ornaments for myself and maybe some lil souvenir gifts for some people. Maybe. Then we went to the mall and I bought a sausage and ate it and it was delicious. Then we went home.

The End.

Oh and I might as well share some other things I’ve learned about this place so far (in case, you know, you need to come rescue me):

1. No one speaks English or has ever heard of it or even knows that another language other than Kazakh and mayyyyybe Russian exists. No joke. And this sucks because all I know how to say is da (yes), nyet (no), spaziba (thank you), pajalista (please), Stolichnaya  (Stolichnaya), Engliski (English), and dasvendanje (bye). And I’m not even sure if those are the same words in Kazakh. So to communicate, you need to be fluent in sign language. Or Kazakh. Whichever you find easier.
2. Kazakhs are apparently obsessed with Maroon 5. I’m not sure why. But in the grocery store, on the radio in the taxi, on the local music channels, you name it – Adam Levine’s melodious feminine voice is to be heard. And that shit stays stuck in your head, too. So I’m like, slipping on a patch of ice somewhere, and in my head I’m all, “I got the moves like Jagger…”

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3. Any part of your body that is exposed to the air will fall off within a matter of minutes. I had to go drop something off last night at Ma’s friend’s apartment across the courtyard. It’s literally 25 meters away. I had to get mad bundled up, and then I was all like “Oh it’s not that far – I totes don’t need my scarf and gloves.” WRONG. YOU ALWAYS NEED YOUR SCARF AND GLOVES! My face went through the entire spectrum of colours, from normal to red to blue to purple to white and back again, and my hands had no feeling or sensation left. You could have shot me in each hand twice and I wouldn’t’ve felt it, from how numb they were. The funniest part is watching me try to light a cigarette in this state. And by funny I mean, laugh and I’ll kill you.

4. I’ve lived in cold places before. I’ve experienced snow for years. I know what it’s like. I also know that proactive measures are taken to ensure that the roads are cleared of snow as quickly as possible. This is done with a snow plow and salt. In Kazakhstan, they haven’t learned this yet. There is no pavement. There are no streets. You’re just driving constantly on snow. And walking on ice. Don’t get me wrong – they try! But they’re doing it wrong. I saw a guy today use water to break up the snow and then shovel it across the sidewalk. Uhm. Water freezes, asshole. Thanks in advance for the spinal fracture.

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5. All female Kazakhs are born with high-heels on their lil baby feet. This is the only explanation as to how they can possibly walk long and dangerous distances (I’ve even seen chicks RUN! Like, run to catch a bus, or run across the street) in 5 inch hooker boots that have zero traction.

Okay and that’s all for now. I need to go lie on top of the radiator for a while.

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Day One – Captain’s Log

November 30, 2012

I’ve never felt this cold in all my conscious years of living. Like, seriously. It’s not even describable in words. When I landed, I honestly thought my hands would fall off while I was smoking. It was -18 degrees when I landed and still getting colder. And Ma had the audacity to tell me “It’s actually not that cold today!”

Some things worthy of note:

– I didn’t realise we were landing. I thought we were still in the clouds. This place is a barren wasteland, surrounded for like 500 km on all sides with tundra and wolves and bears. I took a picture when I landed. It’s on facebook, but my rendition looks like this:

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– There is a 90% chance that I will return without a face and hands.

– The toilet in Ma’s apartment has a heated seat and, wait for it… A BUTTON THAT YOU PUSH SO THAT WATER SPRAYS INTO YOUR POOP HOLE AND CLEANS IT FOR YOU! They have one setting for men, and one for women. Not really sure how that works.

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– There were fireworks at the palace across the street when we drove up to the apartment. I think they sensed my arrival.

– In order to go outside even for three seconds, a typical outfit consists of: a t-shirt, a sweater, a light jacket, a bigger jacket, a scarf, a hat (with ear coverage), leggings and/or thermal long underwear, jeans, and boots that cover at least halfway to the knee. If you miss one of the aforementioned items, you will perish.

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– Putting on the above mentioned array of clothing requires at least 15 minutes. We’re staying on the 11th floor. Perhaps it’s time to quit smoking?

– WordPress is actually blocked in Kazakhstan, so don’t tell the government I’m here before they come get m

2012 Olympics

August 12, 2012

So basically my TV has been hijacked by the Olympics for the past few weeks, thus forcing me to have watched it during my free time, when I could have instead been watching that Justin Bieber movie or Teletubbies or horror films. Today is thankfully the closing ceremony, so this post is kinda like a tribute to the sports (and not-so-sports) I’ve watched this time around.

Archery. As far as I can remember, archery used to be about a bow, an arrow, and a target. Not arm guards and chest pads and finger straps and tripods and balancers and all that jazz. I didn’t even know what was going on half the time.

Canoe Slalom. So awesome! I never knew they even had this! My favourite part was when Ten thought they were all amputees or leg-less folk, and it was part of the Special Olympics.

Cycling – track. I never really watched this, Adam did. It was too boring for me. They were all just quickly pedaling around a raised oval. I did like the little grandpa referee though, who showed the racers the course for what seemed like an endless number of laps. Because an oval is just too complicated to figure out by oneself.

Diving. My favourite summer Olympic sport! I liked the little Chinese guy. The tiny one. The one who won everything. Wait, I’m not narrowing it down, let me research his name… Ah yes – Qui Bo.

Equestrian – jumping. Those horses were magnificent! I felt happy when they jumped over all those obstacles perfectly! I felt bad for that one horse who got scared at the big fence-in-the-bush and had to walk around it. I didn’t really notice the jockeys or riders or whatever horse-jumpers are called because they all looked the same in their silly little pants-suits.

Fencing. I still have no idea what this sport is about.

Gymnastics – artistic. This is the normal gymnastics. When I say normal, I mean uneven parallel bars, vault, beam, etc. Not that freaky rhythmic circus shit they do with balls and ribbons. Deng Linlin was my highlight! I also cried a little when Russia lost the lead because of that little midget girl falling and then the cocky one falling on her face at the end of their floor routines. Gymnastics is so emotional.

Shooting. I watched this for a few minutes, but then saw how quiet, sad, and dead-faced the sport was and turned it off.

Swimming. I only watched a little, but then when that freaky buck-toothed Lithuanian girl won something and started gnawing on her gold medal, I felt sick and never watched it again.

Synchronised swimming. I don’t know how those people can hold their breath that long and do strong underwater stuff while just treading the whole. fucking. time. Respect.

Taekwondo. Not even a real sport.

Weightlifting . I got all teary-eyed again when that Chinese guy won and that other Chinese guy was injured but still did good and that other Chinese guy dislocated his elbow. At least I think they were all Chinese. Also, the women scared the hell out of me. This one guy chick looked like a handsome man and this other one looked like an ugly overweight man. I saw many moustaches and uni-brows. It was a roller coaster of emotions.

And that was it. The other sports aren’t worthy of mentioning.

Now I’m excited for winter Olympics!

But hopefully I’ll post something before then.

Maybe.

Probably.

But possibly not.

Wwwwink!

Sebastian Simba Smith

August 14, 2011

For those of you who don’t know, I’m on cat #6. Except this one is actually cute and not a homeless beggar cat from the streets. He’s like a Himalayan/Siamese and not obese at all *cough cough* BArt.

Anywho, so yesterday I took him to the vet for the very first time, to get him vaccinated, dewormed, and microchipped. At least that was the plan, anyway.

When our turn came up, we went into the examination room, and Sebastian politely sat on the table. He also had no problems sitting on the scale (2.5 kilos, what up!). He had no issue when the guy stuck a pill down his throat. He didn’t complain when he got the vaccine-filled syringe jabbed into his luscious coat. Everything was going well!

Then came the microchipping part. And let me just tell you, I’ve never actually seen the process of microchipping the other five cats before. So I kinda thought it’d go something like this:

 

But then what it was actually like was more like this:

And Sebastian thought it was… this:

I felt so bad for him! They couldn’t do it! The doctor and nurse even felt bad and held him and apologised profusely. But they explained that 20-some percent of cats won’t allow it, so in those cases, they just do it at another time, typically when they’re already under general anaesthesia.

Namely, ballsack removal day.

WHERE IS IT?!

August 6, 2011

So I just noticed that my header was an ugly blue box and no longer my beautiful face. I was sad and had to upload a new picture, which I don’t like because it has nothing to do with my wonderful brain, rather, it emphasises my “wonderful” hair. Did you catch the sarcasm? Yeah, that’s why I put the second wonderful in quotation marks.

Anywho, so I uploaded the ugly new picture as a temporary filler until I find my old one, but it’s nowhere to be found! So I’m thinking that maybe the Internets took it.*

So the reason I’m telling you all of this obvious stuffs (since I’m willing to bet at least sixty percent of you have eyeballs and can see the header change) is so that you can design me a new one! Something funky and cool but still in my old style. I’m looking at you, neilslorance. But other people can email me stuff too. Because it’s summer and you have nothing better to do.

Yes thank you okay bye bye.

*Them darn Internets, always touchin’ stuff that dudn’t belong to ’em. Where’s ma shotgun at?

Adventure HQ

August 3, 2011

Yes hello. This is me trying to be bloggative. I’m going to share with you the story of when I recently died at Adventure HQ.*

On the day before Ten left, we decided to eat out. There’s this nice Italian place in Times Square, so we went there. Once we finished our meal, Said said he wanted to pass by this new adventure store on the ground floor. So we went.

By the way, side note: IT IS AWESOME. They have everything ranging from swimming gear to surf stuff to jetskis to winter wear to mountain bikes to ropes and cables to snowboards to fishing to hunting to you name it. They have everything adventure/sports/awesome related.

Anyway, so we went and looked around, and we noticed that they have a huge rock climbing wall, along with this obstacle course that runs around the ceiling of the mall. It looked so stupid and easy. From the bottom.

We decided to give it a try and oh. my. god.

I kid you not.

I pooped my pants at least eighteen times. Over the course of like twenty minutes. Because it was the scariest thing I’ve ever done in my entire life:

First, you had to climb on this loggy thing. Simple enough.

Then, you had to climb on this tight rope with demon cables making your life miserable.

 

THEN, YOU HAD TO DO THE SCARIEST ONE OF THEM ALL. There’s four tyres hanging there and you have to cross them, but they move and they’re far apart and you’re 15 meters up in the air! I cried a little. I also started sweating fear. It was horrible.

Eventually, I crossed it and went on to the next level which was similar, but with like, swinging planks.

Then there were swinging logs. Like, who designed this thing? Why was everything swingy and unstable? A nice set of monkey bars would have been alright, but noooo. They had to petrify me to the point of paralysis.

Next was a normal-ish balance beam (except keep the height in mind).

Then came this big wobbly wooden-plank bridge.

And last, YOU HAD TO JUST JUMP ACROSS THIS GAPING RAVINE! Jumping two meters across when on the ground is one thing, but jumping two meters across when you’re at the verge of tickling the feet of the angels in heaven? Not so much.

So that was it. Oh, to come down, you had to go down this not-so-scary but completely irritating rope thing, but it like, attacked and strangled you the whole way down.

But the rock climbing part was fun and it made my arms hurt.

UPDATE: I went again with Adam, and the time it took me to complete the course cut down considerably, but I was still scared like whoa. Adam said I was a sissy little pansy, but I know he secretly peed himself a bit.

*You’re welcome, Adventure HQ, for the free advertising.

Yes, it’s here!

July 4, 2011

Thanks to the input of my billions of two fans, I have indeed decided to start that new blog I was talking about! If you haven’t already checked it out, go subscribe to it here:

To Numb the Pain

Also, I know that this blog has been looking particularly boring lately, but I swear it’s because I still haven’t found my pen! I don’t know where it is! And this makes me extra sullen and downtrodden, because I have another hilarious knock-knock joke to share with you. And a word of the day!

Anywho, I’ll keep looking for it. In the meantime, go visit my other blog. All two of you.

P.S. Here’s a drawing of a cup of coffee. Just because.


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