Wednesday, October 15, 2014

La lluvia

Hay una cosa que es aterrorizante de la lluvia en el norte. Cuando llueve, la agua se derrama mucho mucho mucho. Las calles llenan con capas de agua. Es muy differente del sur. En el sur, hay la lluvia, claro, pero yo no tengo medio de esa lluvia. La lluvia se absorbe en la tierra el minuto que el agua choca la tierra.

Tal vez la lluvia no se absorbe en la tierra porque ahora yo vivo en una ciudad. En el sur durante mi tiempo en la universidad, Baton Rouge inundó cuando llovió. Es porque Baton Rouge tiene un horrible drenaje pero Baton Rouge no inunda como esta ciudad. Baton Rouge inunda cuando llueve por muchas ahoras. En esta ciudad, inunda en treinta minutos. Yo creo que la tierra es differente entre el norte y el sur. La tierra del sur absorbe más de la tierra del norte. Yo no sé por qué. Yo no tengo miedo de la lluvia en el sur pero en el norte, no quiero salir fuera cuando llueve.

English: There is something terrifying about rain in the north. When it rains, the rain pours a lot, lot, lot. The streets fill with layers of water. It's very different from the south. In the south, there's rain, of course, but I'm not afraid of that rain. The rain absorbs into the ground the minute that the water hits the ground.

Maybe the rain doesn't absorb into the ground because now I live in a city. In the south while I was at the university, Baton Rouge flooded when it rained. That's because Baton Rouge has a horrible drainage system, but Baton Rouge doesn't flood like this city. Baton Rouge floods after it rains for awhile. In this city, it floods in thirty minutes. I think that the ground is different between the north and the south. The ground in the south absorbs more than the ground in the north. I don't know why. I'm not scared of the rain in the south, but in the north, I don't want to go outside when it rains.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Just Write 156: My Lovely Home

Last night, my neighbors on the right thought it was a good idea to slam cabinets and vacuum at 11:30pm on a weekday. Then another one decided to stomp down the stairs in heels at 5:30am this morning. Lastly, my neighbors on the left decided to just get up at 5:30am and wake everyone else with them. I usually get up at 6am anyway, but those extra 30 minutes of sleep would have been real nice.

My apartment is a nice size. There's more room than I'll possibly ever use at 625 square feet. I have a nice dining room table, a TV and a TV stand, and a bed. I'm pretty set. Soon, I'll be able to afford a sofa. It's a really nice place, but please no visitors until I get a soft spot for you to sit and support your back. I'd rather not torture you with sitting in my dining room chairs for hours.

I have a nice view outside. My balcony looks onto trees, and frequently, I can see giant rabbits and squirrels running by. Occasionally, there's a small chipmunk. Those critters much smaller than I expected. Chip and Dale looked bigger on TV. And did I mention the rabbits and squirrels are huge? They're much bigger than the ones in Louisiana. Without my glasses on, I once thought a rabbit was a dog.

Fall is setting in, and the trees around me are losing their leaves. Some leaves have littered my balcony, but I think the view is pretty. I'll sweep the leaves off eventually, just not now.

5:30am and I was up anyway, so I got out of bed and started my day. Coffee from my single-serving coffee maker (not a Keurig, just a Black and Decker) and then a bowl of store band frosted shredded wheats. It's not the kind of comfort I had at home in my parents' house with k-cups and brand name shredded wheats, but it's just as good.

I seriously thought about moving to get away from the noise. I looked at a few different places, but nothing seemed to be as good. This place was supposed to be "quiet" with grad students, professionals, and families. No undergrads allowed. Maybe I just chose the wrong section.

I packed my bag with lunch for the day, my journal, kindle, and camera. I planned on taking pictures of the trees outside of the office. I'll look like a crazy tourist, but I guess that's okay. At least one good thing about this morning is that I had an extra 10 minutes before I had to catch the bus.

I love where I live, but I hate my neighbors.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Just Write 155: Dragon of Tissues

I became sick last week, and now I am worse. Instead of tiny sniffles, I now have loud gobby sniffs of giant liquid. Sometimes, the snot decides to flow like a creek from one of my nostrils. Just one. That one nostril is as red as Rudolph's nose. Gross, oh, yes. I feel sorry for my co-worker who sits on the other side of my cubicle. It's not my intention to gross her out. It's just...happening.

I just walked to the warehouse to grab a few boxes of kleenex. Instead of swiping tissues from the box on the top of the cubicle ledge, I now have my own stash to use. I'm half-tempted to write "Hannah's horde" on the box as if I am the dragon resting on top of the treasures of tissues. You may come and fight me for them if you wish, but my deadly sneezes may cause you to shrink back. Warning: Approach at your own risk. Sickness is in the air.

This post is a part of Just Write at The Extraordinary Ordinary.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Animal Harborer

I am notorious for harboring animals. In fact, my parents now make fun of me because I can't seem to stop giving shelter to animals in needs.

Exhibit A: In my sophomore year of high school, my roommate snuck a kitten in through the window. Someone had thrown it into the lake, and she rescued it. We had it for about a month or so, hiding it each night during room check. We tried desperately to find it a home and get it out of the dorm before we got in trouble. Eventually, one of our friends took it home.

Exhibit B: In my senior year of high school, a friend asked my roommate and I (a different roommate), to keep a fish for a night in our room. The SLA (student life adviser, similar to a RA or CA in college) knew about the fish and was going to confiscate it from its owners' room while they were both away for the weekend. The night that we took the fish to "hide" it, the SLA stormed our room after midnight, and my roommate and I were both positive we were going to get kicked out of school. Fortunately, we weren't.

Exhibit C: When I first moved into the dorms in college at the beginning of my freshman year, I adopted a fish, and it lived with me until my junior year. He was actually the only legal pet I owned until my senior year in college.

Hello. I am Hannah's fishy. I live in fishy heaven now.
Exhibit D: In my junior year of college, one of my ex-boyfriend's cats had 4 kittens. His parents really wanted to get rid of them since they had 3 cats already. So, he somehow convinced me to take one. He brought it over to my apartment, and I kept it for about 3 months until my roommate moved in and told me to get rid of it. The apartment actually banned all animals except fish, and we could've gotten evicted if they saw the animal. My roommate said that the landlady kept talking about cats, so she thought the landlady knew about the illegal resident. I tried to ask a friend to hold the kitten for a year, but my kitten didn't get along with his roommates' cats. I took her back, and then created an extravagant lie for my parents about how my friend couldn't keep the cat, and it needed a home. I'm pretty sure my parents knew I was lying, but they accepted the cat anyway. The cat keeps moving with me between residences as I move to different apartments (except for now since I wasn't sure where I would be living in Pennsylvania, but I will have her again soon!).

You'd think with all the close calls of harboring pets that I wouldn't do it again. However, I can't seem to live without pets. I already talked to my mom about getting a rabbit, which she absolutely said no to because it smells. Well, in the past, she said no to a cat, and I still brought one home...Hmm...Then, I thought, "I'll just get two gerbils." Thankfully, I haven't done that yet since I haven't driven to Petco. I'm kinda hoping the Petco in town doesn't sell live animals, so I can't get them. Part of me also wants to adopt a cat from the local animal shelter, but I keep telling myself not to, in case my current cat and that cat don't get along. I thought about adopting two guinea pigs from a shelter, but thankfully, someone else adopted them before I did. I may have a problem.

Throughout college, I think a lot of students miss their pets. Hence, like me, they end up harboring animals. To be honest, I don't recommend it. Animals are really expensive, whether it's a cat, dog, rodent, or fish. They have high start-up costs since you have to buy cages, litter, food, and such. In fact, one of the things that's stopping me from getting a pet right now is that I keep telling myself, "I can't afford a pet." Another issue is that if I move again, my pets will have to come with me. It'd be very irresponsible to drop my pet off at a shelter when I knew I wouldn't be staying in the area for long.

I'm currently volunteering at an animal shelter, hoping that the interaction with the animals will stem my desire for a pet. A good number of the animals are left there because their owners moved and couldn't take the pets with them. It's actually a problem with college students' having pets during college and then getting rid of them when they change cities to start a new job or move back home. If you really have a need to adopt a pet during college or during a part of your life that may be a little unstable, please remember that these animals require love, money, and time. It's a really bad idea to get one on a whim and then just drop it off when you can no longer keep it or if you don't like it. It's similar to what I constantly tell myself, "I'm not in a good situation to adopt a pet and take care of it properly as it deserves." It's hard to resist the urge, but to myself and other people like me, please resist until you're sure you can give the pet a healthy life. For me, resisting adopting pets is one of the hardest things to do in life. ~.~ I miss my pets.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Echar de menos la universidad

Pues...aunque me graduó de la universidad, a veces echo de menos (extraño) la universidad. Cuando estoy caminando  en el campus de mi trabajo, pienso de las clases y de cómo fácil lo que para obtener conocimiento. Fue muy fácil para aprender información. Porque yo no tengo notas para las materias, no tengo motivación para aprender. Por eso, yo deseo volverme a la universidad. Solo quiero aprender y hacerme inteligente. No quiero las notas. Las que son un exceso de estrés.

Pero hay una cosa que yo no echo de menos. No echo de menos a las estudiantes. No echo de menos las fiestas tampoco. Estoy muy contenta que no encargarme con este lío. Es un poco triste que yo no me gusta a las estudiantes, pero muchas veces, pienso que las estudiantes son ofensas. Yo trabajó mejor sin mis compañeros de clase. Una vez, es muy triste que yo no quisiera estar alrededor a las estudiantes pero muchas estudiantes no compartían las mismas convicciones conmigo.   

A veces yo quiero volverme a la universidad para aprender pero no quiero volverme a las estudiantes quienes aprecian las fiestas más del conocimiento. 

English translation:
Well...although I graduated from college, sometimes I miss it. When I'm walking on my work's campus, I think of classes and how easy it was to learn things. It was very easy to learn information. Because I don't have grades for subjects, I don't have motivation to learn. Because of this, I want to return to the university. I only want to learn and become smarter. I don't want grades. Those are too much stress.

But there's one thing that I don't miss. I don't miss the students. I don't miss the parties either. I am very glad that I don't have to deal with this ruckus. It's a bit sad that I don't like students, but a lot of the time, I think that the students are obnoxious. I worked better without my classmates. Again, it's really sad that I didn't want to be around students, but a lot of students don't share the same beliefs as me.

Sometimes I want to return to college to learn, but I don't want to go back to the students who value parties more than knowledge.

Side note: I wish my Spanish was more fluid, like my English. I guess I need to keep working on that.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Showing Off Status

It never occurred to me that people judge you based on what you drive. It should have when I saw people driving "ghettomobiles" and I thought they came from a lower-income area. Until now, that bias didn't really click.

He may drive a ghettomobile, but he's actually a millionaire. Don't let him fool you. Source.
Lately, I've been taking the bus to work since I don't have a car (thanks to the monster puddle). My coworkers have remarked, "Hannah, do you want a car? I can let you borrow one" and "Oh, I remember when I used to car pool and had to ride the bus." While I do think my coworkers have good intentions, it slightly infuriates me that I can't ride the bus in peace. It's as if not owning a car makes you seem poor and unfortunate. In fact, when I told my supervisor that I got a bus pass so she didn't need to worry about bringing me to work, she asked if I was doing that by choice and asked if I really wanted to do that--multiple times.

In college, I rode the bus all the time. My college had buses that specifically went from campus to  the students' apartments and back. We paid for these buses with our one-time parking fees (at $165 for a year for a commuter) and didn't have to worry about paying the fare every time we boarded the bus. It was really convenient and saved me a lot on gas (I only had to fill up once a month). We had a few people who used our buses that weren't college students. Sometimes they were going to work at the college or were going to campus to catch the public CATS bus. Some of them seemed poor because of the clothes they wore.

Now, I have a bus pass from the university I work at, so I still get to save a lot on gas and I don't have to pay $37 a month for parking. I think the bus pass is a great deal and more people should use it. It also helps our environment, too. Yet at the price of saving money and the environment (nearly $100 for parking and gas a month) people would rather drive their own cars.  It's at this point that I realized that cars mean a lot to Americans. It's probably why people awe at Lexus and Audi cars. It's also probably why people look down on Fords and even Chevys (except sports cars, such as Mustangs and Corvettes). Oh, you have a Ford? Tch. That's not fancy. Oh, you're driving a 2000? Lol, man, get with the picture; it's 2014.

Let's look at it this way: a car costs nearly half or more of someone's annual income. To demonstrate this, I'll pick a Chevy car since I'm lucky enough to own a Chevy. The cheapest car, the Spark, is about $12,170 for a new 2015 model. That's a little more than half my annual gross income, meaning the income I take home after taxes and costs of benefits. However, because I'm a tree hugger, I'd like a Chevy Volt (I'd actually like a Nissan Leaf, but let's just skip that for now). The Chevy Volt is $34,170 or 1.4 times my annual gross income. Considering I'd have to pay 0.5-1.4 of my income for a car, purchasing a car is a big deal. Completely paying it off is an even bigger one. Besides, a car is like a pet. You're not just buying a car but also all the upkeep, such as oil changes, headlight changes, windshield wipers, and more. Plus, you still have to pay for gas. To be honest, I couldn't afford a car note and car insurance on my income. I'm privileged that my parents pay that for me.

I don't see myself as poor even though I don't own a sofa yet, but other people may view me that way because I'm taking public transportation. Yet I think public transportation is a great deal. It may take longer to get somewhere, but at least I don't have to pay for a car loan, car insurance, gas, and all the other important maintenance issues. Plus, I don't have to deal with traffic. Sounds good to me. I think I'll keep my bus pass for a while even if I get my car back.

P.S. In case anyone is wondering, I got a bus pass so I wouldn't become a burden on people, and I could get around town on my own. When one of coworkers volunteers to bring me home, I offer gas money, but she always refuses.