Detroit, Snow, and Shopping Galore

Posted in RandomVille with tags , , , , on Sunday, December 21, 2008 by dragonsvamp

Yesterday, was an extremely busy day for me. Got up before eight and out of the house before 9 am. I went all the way down to Detroit to pick up a car for a friend.  Roads were just becoming clear after the previous 24 hours of nonstop snowing.  I believe we got about a foot of snow and the trucks were all over the place clearing snow off of the roads. The free ways were clearer and more easily drivable.

After picking up the car for the friend (who would be taking the car on Christmas) I decided to take a detour because my driving buddy needed to finish up some holiday shopping. I’m happy I went along. The Circuit City in this one mall was going out of business and closing down in two days.  Everything was 70-90% off.  

I happened to stumble upon a Magellan Maestro GPS that retailed for $299. It was out of the box but in near perfect condition. I got it for $75. Now that’s a sweet buy. Another sweet buy was my Nexxtech Wireless Transmitter and Charger. This thing lets me play my iPod through an FM station on my car radio while charging my iPod (something I’ve been wanting for a while). Regular price? $59.99. How much did I get it for? A mere 18 bucks. 

I’m surprised I found both those at all. The store was nearly empty. Everything super good was already gone. I guess people overlooked those two things. My driving buddy got a Mio GPS for $45; its retail price around $150.

I’ve used friends’ GPSs before and really liked them but couldn’t justify spending so much money on them when I could just used mapquest or googlemaps to figure out directions. But coming upon such a sweet buy, I couldn’t help myself. It was too good to turn away from.

I spent the rest of the day helping my buddy find gifts for friends and family. It’s fun when you go shopping to help a friend instead of going shopping to spend money. You don’t feel obliged to spend money or buy anything (even though I did end up buying stuff).

On the flip side of things, more car trouble has headed my way. I believe it’s time for me to part with my beloved (*ahem*) car. She’s been giving me problems left and right. On Thursday, the car decided to die on me in the middle of m running a million errands. I stayed at home all Friday because I was extremely sick. On Saturday, I was out all day getting my friend’s car and holiday shopping but didn’t use my car. I did turn it on to make sure it worked though and it did. But today, it refused to start. 

Thank God it’s winter break and I don’t have work to worry about my car working or not. But that’s only for another two weeks. I need to figure out a solution to this problem. I keep getting my car fixed and it keeps falling apart on me. It’s old, and about time to retire, so I keep getting told that I need to get another car- but I can’t afford one at the moment.

I’m sure something will come up soon to solve this problem. If not I might have to take out a loan and buy a used car that’s newer than mine. We’ll see.

Snow, snow, and more snow. It decided to start snowing towards the end of the day yesterday. And apparently it snowed quite a bit throughout the night.  I woke up this morning to find the roads covered in snow again and my drive way completely buried.

Oh well, I guess I’ll just end up staying inside for the rest of the day since my car won’t work and I don’t really urgently need to do anything. Or I just take my friend’s car out for a spin since he won’t be picking it up until Christmas evening.

hmmmmmm

Let it snow!

Posted in Michigan, Photos with tags , , on Friday, December 19, 2008 by dragonsvamp

So the last day of school for 2008 turns out to be a snow day. It started snowing at 1 am on the 19th and hasn’t stopped yet. One extra day off for winter break- that makes 17 whole days! It’s a break I know the whole school needed- most of all the teachers. It’s gotten super hectic and tiring and so winter break couldn’t come at a better time. 

Being holed up in my apartment isn’t too bad actually. First. I know I have over two weeks of free time to go out and do as I please without the constraints of work and college. Second, I’m extremely sick and barely have any voice left in me. So i needed the rest and relaxation. For the first time in months, I got to sleep in. Averaging about six hours a night of sleep, has taken its toll on me and the result? Never getting better.

About a month ago, I got sick and lost my voice and finally started getting better before I was thrown back into sick realm. But that’s not something I’m bothered by. Yes, its annoying to be sick but it’s not going to stop me from getting stuff done.

 

The view from outside my living room window

The view from outside my living room window

 

 

Other than watching all the snow falling outside and seeing how beautiful all the whiteness is, I am making a huge dent in my reading. Almost done with Artemis Fowl and the Time Paradox, already finished reading The Child Called It, and doing all kinds of stuff with my facebook account and my blog. 

Ahh the loveliness of winter break!

Sadly…

Posted in NOTE with tags , on Friday, December 19, 2008 by dragonsvamp

…Today marks a sad day for my blog. After three years of blogging, I’ve made the decision that all comments will need to be approved before being posted. This decision was made when a person or persons began stalking my blog (since apparently they have nothing better to do in their very much boring life) and leaving nasty comments. Their agenda? To be cyber-bullies. To poke fun at, degrade, and find anything negative to harp on. Well cyber-bullies your fun is over on my blog! 

To everyone else, sorry for the inconvenience. Be assured that I will approve comments as quickly as possible.

Elegy… (or something like that)

Posted in Health & Fitness, In Love, NOTE on Wednesday, December 10, 2008 by dragonsvamp

I have found myself in mourning over the passing of a most wonderful entity in my life.  She has literally stood by me for a much too short time. A time I wish I had not wasted by taking her for granted.  Every time I found myself with her I had not considered her presence other than whimsically, now and then, thinking of how beautiful she was.  I’ve only been with her for a few months and will miss her very much. And though I should have been more appreciative, her absence will be most greatly felt. She’s been invaluable to me and my existence and I will mourn her passing for eternity… or until I get another like her that is. 

In July, I had fallen in love with her. I now believe in love at first sight- for I loved her the moment I laid eyes on her. Oh how I loved her! After her discovery, I schemed to gain her attention and, consequently, make her mine. Which in short order came to be.

But as is with most things, all good things must come to an end. I shall miss my friend greatly.

*wineds down the organ music*

Yes yes I know this all seems so dramatic over a pair of shoes but seriously! They’re a great pair and they’re black and white checkered too! Yes, they were painful when worn for more than a couple of hours and could never be worn during the week for I would be on my feet from as early as 7am and not be home before 10pm some nights but the shoes were just so standout-ish-ly awesome I couldn’t help but love her. A few days ago she ripped and now is going to be buried.

But that’s another issue I need to think over. Should I bury her in a shoe box? But she didn’t come in one and so I think I might offend her if I just used any old shoe box. What if I used a Hot Topic shoe box? I do have one at home. But then she’d still be upset over it since it’s doesn’t have her picture on the box and the item discription on it is for some reallllllly nice bright red Mary Janes. So I’m sure that would doubly offend her since those Mary Janes are still in great condition and it would be oxymoronish to have her buried in their box.

So what to do now? Is cremation an option? Possibly, but that just seems rude to me. Cremating her would mean burning up all those beautiful still shiny black and white checkers and I just can’t bear the thought of that.

I must admit it has crossed my mind to throw her away. But it was a fleeting thought and don’t you dare mention it in her presence dead or not! Never could I do that to her. 

Until I figure out what I am going to do with her beautiful corpse I’m just going to have her lay next to my other very much alive and kicking pairs of shoes so that I may admire her. But it will be bittersweet for every time I see her with the others I feel saddened that all I can do now is look at her and not wear her.

*sigh*

Finally an A+

Posted in Michigan, University in America with tags , , , on Sunday, December 7, 2008 by dragonsvamp

When I walk out of my calculus class I sometimes feel incompetent and unintelligent. Yes everything the professor explains in class makes sense but when I try to apply it afterwards I can’t seem to get it right.  It’s an odd feeling coming from a straight A student when I was in high school. And in college my grade averaged from B+ to A.  So it is difficult to accept that I’m doing really bad in this class.

As I was saying, I leave the class feeling pretty much like a stupid student. But then I go to my Survey of African American Literature class and feel like I’m the smartest one there. I can actively engage in all the discussions and ace all of my papers and exams.  So, consequently, I walk out of this class feeling very intelligent.

It’s a very weird when you get those two conflicting feelings at the same same semester more or less the same day and time. 

I’ve been feeling very bad lately over how terrible I’m doing in calculus and really needed a confidence booster.  I got that last Tuesday. It was my last AFA class and I was going to find out how I did in the course over all. The professor was leaving the country the next day and so had planned out our course so that we’d find out our final grade (and complete our final paper) before the last class meeting.

For the first twenty minutes of the class he talked about how he enjoyed giving the course and how impressed he was at our input and etc etc etc.  Finally, he told us that our class averaged about an A- with a handful of A and only one A+.

I had turned in my final paper the week before, after rushing through writing it and so felt that it wouldn’t live up to my previous papers and course work.  Therefore, I was hoping I at least got an A but was expecting an A-.

Finally, he gave out our final papers so that we may see our grade on that and then collected them because he couldn’t give them back (something about having to keep it for records) and he hadn’t had time to make copies of all of them so if we wanted a copy we’d have to get that after class was over.

I got my paper and it had , in large red ink, 23/25. I flipped over the 7 pages of writing and on the 6th he made a very nice comment of how he really liked my writing and my in class discussions etc. The 7th page contained my extra credit paper, which I did just on a whim because I thought my main paper wasn’t as good as it could be. On that last paper was, again in red ink, written EXTRA CREDIT 5/5. So in total I got 28/25 on my final.

In all honesty, I was surprised. I didn’t expect to get such a good grade on this last paper.  The professor then collected all our papers and gave us our final grade envelopes that contained a detailed account of the semester’s assignments and their scores. I open mine and see a nice healthy looking A+ as my final grade.

You can’t imagine how much of a confidence booster that was.  But it didn’t stop there. 

I followed the professor back to his office after class was over to get a copy of my paper. He asked me what I was planning on doing after I graduated and suggested that I go into communication. He was very impressed by my writing and discussion skills and said my presentations were really good.

My was that a REAL confidence booster and yet that wasn’t the end of it.

He then suggested that I go study in Europe for a semester and said he would personally help me find scholarships and fellowships that would pay for it. I have been planning on taking a summer off and going to Europe, but if I can get a free ride as well as learn more then why not?

This is what apparently happens when you end up making a good impression on your professor besides the fact he ends up being the Chair(person) of the department.

Well at least I know I’m doing extremely well on two of my four courses. Lets hope I pull through on the other two.

Fingers crossed.

(To all out there who celebrate: Eid Mubarak!)

Never Gonna Win

Posted in life experiences, Michigan, University in America with tags , , , , on Sunday, November 23, 2008 by dragonsvamp

Apparently, I must be the only exception when it comes to good grades, studying and the relationship they have.  It’s common knowledge that the more you study for a cours the more likely you are to do well- right?

So why am I freaking doing worse?

Two examples:

1. Calculus: Exam one came and went, I didn’t study much for it. Crammed like hell about ten minutes before the exam began and I passed the test.  Exam two came up and I took half a day off of work to study for it. I went straight to the library and studied for about four hours before the test and felt very good about it. I failed said exam. And not just failed, I got 20 points less on it than I did on the first exam. So it wasn’t a barely fail. It was a major fail.

2. Biology: Ok so I “bomb” the first exam and quiz. I get better on my quizzes because I’m able to study a little bit more for them. Don’t do well on my second exam but the time I had planned to study for it got majorly screwed up so I only had about twenty minutes before the exam to cram. Still passed both exams. Of course I didn’t do wonderfully on them, but I did enough to pass and have a C average in the class.  Last Friday I had the third exam, I literally had all day to prepare for the exam and I did. I felt very good going into the exam and even left feeling like I’d done so much better than I had on the first two exams. I wasn’t rushed and I felt I’d retained enough of the information this time to do well. I just checked on my grades today and found out that I barely, just barely, passed the third exam. In other words out of the three exams this is my worst grade. Additionally, the past two quiz grades were horrible.

Of course I’m sailing through my two other classes with a most definite A in both but those come so naturally to me that I don’t even need to study much for them. And whatever studying I do have to do comes easily to me.

So am I just weird and an exception to the general rule? Or am I doing something wrong here? Anything wrong with the equation? 

*shrugs* I should ask my calculus professor.

And so life goes on…

Posted in Goals, life experiences with tags , , on Tuesday, November 11, 2008 by dragonsvamp

There is one lesson in life a person will realize at some point. If no other lesson is learned this one is the one I would bet money on.

I have been extremely busy since my decision to move on with my life and leave a person that used to be very important to me.  Besides it being a very good decision, it indirectly affected my views on the events that have occurred thus far.

My pursuit in changing my status at the university of Michigan from an out of state resident to an instate resident has been fruitless. Every semester I hope and every semester I am disappointed. Though I’ve been in Michigan for over a year now and pay resident taxes and have a full time job (and the list can go on) apparently it still doesn’t count towards the picky board of residency at the university. I’ve decided that, since they don’t want to give me what is rightfully mine (based on their criteria) then I don’t want to keep giving my- much too expensive as it is- tuition to an institute that will ambiguously  tell me that I’m not ‘permanent’ enough for them.  Well I satisfy their criteria and therefore should be considered ‘permanent’ and yet they tell me I still don’t demonstrate. Seriously, how permanent does permanent get?

So what am I going to do now? Well I’ll most definitely not completely quit school. I’ll just wait and keep applying until I do get residency. After that we’ll talk school.  For now I’ve got a lot to straighten out.

First, I’m working on complete in-dependancy. That will start as soon as this semester is over. This semester I had to end up getting a scholarship that I would rather do without (long story). Anyways, this means working more so I can save more money to put towards a college education where I can actually focus on it instead of have my focus divided so much between work and college. I hate not being able to give my education the time and effort it deserves. And right now I’m putting too much money and not enough time into it. And therefore, I’m not getting as much as I should out of it.

I know though that just having my full time job at the school I work at is definately not going to be enough for me to keep boredom away (remember there’s nothing going on in the area I live here in Michigan!) So, I need to find a part time job to keep me occupied and to be able to put the money desired aside. I found the perfect one. I applied and hope to hear from the library soon.  Yup working at the public library will be an amazing experience.  Even if I don’t get this job, I’ll keep trying to find something- there’s no quitting.

And to be able to commute (to work, work and home) without any trouble means that I must start thinking of getting another car. Ok I’ve been thinking about it for a while now, but had it on the back burner for much too long. It now decided to make itself heard.  I know from last winter how much I had to spend to fix my current car and I don’t really want to deal with that this winter.

And winter has truly decided to show itself already. It’s freezing here. And before I know it, it will be snowing and sticking. So what to get? A used car without knowing its exact history or a new one that costs and arm and a leg? After much thought and research, I’ve decided to check out a Nissan Versa at the dealer. If everything works out I’ll be having a spankin’ new car by the end of the month. If not then I’ll keep my search up.

This only means more worry. Making sure that all payments are accounted for. That means tightening of the belt too. But I can do it. Just like I was able to get myself out of a country I couldn’t stand. Just like I was able to prove to myself that I needed to only depend on myself (wa tab3an Allah). I can do this.

So pray that I get this job at the library. I’m so excited and nervous. I know I fit the description perfectly so lets hope they think so too. And from there we’ll see how life unfolds.

Because one day it will hit you…

No matter what: life moves on. No matter what.