So after "hanging up" on Brad in a google chat today (sorry, Brad!!!) I thought I'd better at least post about my life!
Of note, last week I met Kathleen Sibelius.
Okay, I didn't meet her (and no, my picture is not nearly as amazing as Alex's--looks like a great summer, Alex!), but I set up chairs for her and sat on the third row to watch her speak. She's not as tall as she looks in pictures, but she is a woman with a presence! I think she definitely earned her governorship and cabinet appointment. It was fun to hear what she had to say.
Other than that, things are continuing much as normal. I hit 300 hours this week (wahoo!) but I still have three weeks left on the job. I'll be back August 15th. I'm totally excited for classes (Is that still nerdy?) and school supply shopping. See you in a month!
Brad: are you in New York, yet?!! I didn't even get to ask!!!!
I’m glad to be back in North America. Here are some things I learned from my experience: 1. I really love good public transportation. I think we could have comfortably lived in Geneva without a car long term, granted having one would be convenient. This not only cut cost with owning a car, but it encourages people to walk. On returning to Vancouver, Eliza and I noticed how we’ve grown-up in places that are heavily car based. This probably explains why we rarely saw any fat people in Europe compared to N.A. 2. I would like to live where recycling is the norm. There are these giant recycling bins near most apartments and housing areas in Geneva and people would bring their bags of recycling (paper, glass, plastic, metal) daily it seemed. 3. Also, I learned the art of hanging up laundry (hangers for shirts and getting pretty fast with the clothes pins). Apartment complexes have laundry rooms in the basements along with large rooms with metal wires as lines for hanging clothes. I found out that if you don’t use hanger for shirts and clothes-pins for pants that they don’t dry as fast and thus smell a bit mildewy from drying slowly. However, through all this hanging I learned how much I missed having a dryer. 4. We are a really loud group of people. Maybe it was because I was more sensitive to hearing someone speak English among the constant French but it still seemed that English speakers, and especially North Americans, have a higher volume setting even when just talking on the phone. 5. I love the French. They expect you to speak French and even when you don’t reply in French they keep going on. I liken it to Americans that expect others to speak English which I have been guilty of many a time. 6. I don’t think I could do data validating and management for a career. However, I found that I grew to kind of enjoy it during my internship. 7. Going topless in public parks is not illegal in Geneva. Yikes!
Here are some pics from our last month.
Duomo in Milan, Italy
Cailler Chocolate Factory, Broc, Switzerland It was all you can eat... I could have had more but decided to pass on the stomach ache.
Lance Armstrong's Team Car. Eliza was the paparazzi for this shot from our borrowed car.
And of course, the team I worked with. Great people.
Hope everyone is having a great summer. Also, Eliza and I found out last week that we are having a boy. Due date still October 22nd.
So I've had an entire month now in which to post interesting stories about my life so it's high time I begin! I've really enjoyed reading all of your posts just now. What a great summer we're all having... apart! I was kind of delaying until I had some pictures; however, in a typical Christy move I've made it to Dallas without a camera and in a recent post posted at our blog (forlackofpaperandapen.blogspot.com) Jared revealed to our entire readership that we actually haven't taken ANY pictures in 2010. It's a good thing our temple work's done otherwise our posterity would have their hands tied proven we'd existed.
If you check out our blog you can read my executive summary of our between school and internship activities. We went camping and hiking in Zion, Jared graduated and we went to San Diego to hang with my family. We had to get our whole summer of fun together in!
I've been at my internship since May 23. To be honest, I think it's taken a month for me to a) understand what the Office on Women's Health is supposed to do and b) gain an appreciation for the importance of that. Most of the time I've felt like I was just doing a long list of assignments. But it's beginning to come together and I really love where I work. Most of what we do is increasing community knowledge about women's health issues and administering grants to various community groups on the ground. My fourth day on the job I was sent to Fort Worth to man an exhibit recruiting people for our grant application list and explaining about what the Office on Women's Health does. No one was more curious than that about me, but I learned pretty quick!
I never know what I'll be doing day to day. I got to review a grant application the other day and decide whether to fund them. What power (okay, just $1500 worth)! It's fun to be seeing the coordination of federal, state and community health groups working together with at least a little efficiency :-) My boss suggested a great project idea out of the blue... so crossing my fingers I hope it can pan out!
In my spare time I haven't watched a lot of TV, but I have watched A LOT of library movies--like coming up on one a day. The Dallas public library has a sweet selection. I'm living with my Aunt and Uncle... and so's my Grandma. So I spend most nights watching a movie (or FIFA or the NBA FINALS!!) with her. Also a lot of news watching and looking at old pictures. Between NPR on the way to and from work and a nightly hour of national and local news I am so caught up on current events (and so depressed about the LA oil spill).
My aunt and uncle have been so generous and it's great and HOT (I have about a five minute walk from my building to my parking lot downtown and I'm dripping sweat, think Gatorade, by the time I get there) to live here with them. Jared's been out once and we'll see each other at my sister's wedding this weekend. The only hickup has been the fact that my computer won't connect to Texas wireless. So I'm at the mercy of my two teenage cousins for computer access. So if posts or email replies are few and far between... I'm usually checking my email about twice a week. Dalls, it's like the third world country that isn't!
I've been to a barbeque place! (Alex, that's for you) But I haven't gotten much of Texas culture yet, other than I discovered that I can't understand Patricia (the cafeteria worker downstairs) at all. Not a word because of her intense Southern/inner city drawl. Yikes! It's reminding me of communicating with people in Thailand with my limited Thai. Today, though I actually answered the question she asked and managed to get bacon on my baked potato. We're friends. :-) People in Dallas are so friendly, though. The ward here is really nice and the people I work with are so funny and kind as well. There's a lot of women in my summer. My aunt, my cousin, my grandma, all the statistics I read, everyone I work with except for our office director, all of the people I talk to on the phone, Relief Society, the ward exercise group, all of the other Regional Directors on conference call. Women's. Health. What. Watch out! If I'm not careful I'm coming home a raving womencentrist!
I've missed you! I'm excited to see you again in the Fall!
This morning I went to a meeting in the Senate Building at the Capitol. It was a meeting for the Utah Prevention Advisory Council. There were people from all different types of groups around Utah who were working with substance abuse prevention in some way. It was really interesting to hear different things that are going on around the state.
Some highlights of the meeting include -
- sitting next to John Swallow* (and sharing my 'curiously strong' cinnamon altoids with him). Swallow is the newly appointed Chief Deputy Attorney General of Utah - talking with George Starks after the meeting, whose brother died from alcohol poisoning while being hazed into a USU fraternity (as a result he's become very active in trying to get legislation passed in regard to hazing laws, etc)
- being introduced to this website - giving a picture of substance abuse problems throughout Utah - seeing different house and senate bills that are related to substance abuse that have recently been passed - hearing about different trainings and events happening locally
I really enjoyed the meeting. I filled in for my supervisor who was closing on a house today, but I hope I get to go to the next meeting too.
*I just learned from the wikipedia page that he has the same birthday as I do! (:
Wow, I just checked the blog today and like everyone has posted except for me! I haven't been anywhere fun like Mexico or England, but Billings has been pretty relaxing. Dan and I have actually been able to watch TV at night! . . . and yes Brad I am caught up on Lost. But I have to say I'm pretty disappointed. I don't know how they are going to wrap it all up with one more episode- it just gets weirder and weirder. And why does everyone have to be dying?! We have also been watching Glee (which I really like) and American Idol (I'm so happy that Casey got kicked off! his hair was disgusting). We have been able to spend lots of time with both our families which has been super fun. I've already done 100 hours for my fieldwork with the health department and I'm hoping to figure out what exactly I am doing for my project this next week. Also, my sister-in-law is getting married next week, so we have been helping with lots of wedding planning stuff. That's about it. If I ever take any pictures I will be sure to post them!