So this is what I woke up to this morning. I literally heard birds singing a few days ago and then all my hopes and dreams of an early spring were crushed.
But I don’t want to talk about snow and winter anymore, I’m over it. What I want to talk about is the grittiness of Halifax. For a lot of people, Halifax is an amazing city to live in. It’s ripe with opportunity, it’s people still have a friendly Maritime vibe and it’s just big enough that you can hide under the cover of anonymity, at least for the first year.
Living in Halifax makes me feel like I’m living in RL. Living in Japan was easy, the most stress I endured was that one time I was unemployed and had an expiring visa. It was stressful but in reality if I had not found a job at the international school I could’ve easily picked up a teaching job. Teaching opportunities are everywhere. The stress you feel while living in Japan is nothing compared to the very real stress you feel living and working in your home country. At least for me this is the case. Dealing with Japanese superiors is one thing but dealing with Canadian superiors is a whole other kind of stress.
The other things that make living in Canada so real is the homelessness, the beggars and the crime. Since moving here last September there has been a foiled attempt at a mass shooting at the Halifax Shopping Centre, a bomb threat at the Mic Mac Mall, an armed man running around town, a bomb scare on Spring Garden Road and just yesterday a man was stabbed in the face in front of the new library which also happens to be on Spring Garden Road. I’m sure there have been a lot more incidents but these are the ones that stick out to me because they were the most sensationalized. Maybe these things should scare me but for some reason they don’t, I like hearing about them in some weird way because this is real life. There are individuals out there that want to cause others harm and there’s nothing that you can do about it, it just is. I accept these things as part and parcel of living in a city.
Posted in Canadian Life, Halifax Life | Tagged bomb threat, Halifax, Halifax Shopping Centre, Spring Garden Road, stabbing | Leave a Comment »
Trekking to and from work and around town has been fun lately.
Is it water? Is it ice?
The Life of Winter Pedestrian
Posted in Halifax Life | Tagged sidewalks, walking, Winter | Leave a Comment »
I gotta say, Halifax, I’m really enjoying your winter weather. We had a couple of “storms” the last few weeks but nothing compared to what I experienced while living in Fredericton last year. That was brutal! Not only have the storms here been weaker but it seems like the sun shines a lot more and that in itself is enough to alleviate the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder.
With less inclement weather, it’s easier to both get out and be motivated to get out and do things. The best thing about living here is that you can find a lot of free events that aren’t just for kids or families. I ended up at the Casino last Friday night to check out the final installment of Take it To The Tiki, a battle of the bands put on by Music Nova Scotia. The final round featured Quiet Parade, Adam Washburn & The Elements, The Regal Beagle Band and my personal favorite, Like A Motorcycle.
The main reason I wanted to go (aside from the amazing cover charge of free) was to see Like A Motorcycle again. The first time I saw these ladies was during Halifax Pop Explosion and they blew my fuckin’ mind! If there’s one thing that has remained constant in my musical tastes it’s females that rock. Juliette and The Licks, Kilbourne, Tegan and Sara are just a few of the ladies that have graced the playlists of my iTunes and although I still love them all, Like A Motorcycle has stolen my musical heart (I’m also pretty sure that I’m in love with guitarist). It’s bands like this that make me want to be in a band. I could learn to sing…
I’m really excited to be getting to know the vast music scene here in Halifax. There’s a lot to be seen and heard coming out of this city from all genres. The Regal Beagle Band and Adam Washburn & The Elements didn’t disappoint either. Adam Washburn had a very Canadian sound (think Sam Roberts and Joel Plaskett) but was very unique at the same time. They put on an incredibly, energetic show which was a nice change from Quiet Parade who were good but just not what I was feeling that night.
I had heard of The Regal Beagle Band before but hadn’t taken the time to actually check them out. First impressions told me they would be great as they came out dressed to the nines with button-ups, vests and suspenders and one gentleman was carrying a fiddle. Often a fiddle indicates a boring celtic rock band especially when you live on the East Coast but I was pleasantly surprised at the way the fiddle was incorporated into their music. It was played like a guitar and often sounded like a guitar which gave them some cred in my books (not just another celtic rock band, thankfully).
#wcw Like A Motorcycle
You know what else is free?! Skating at the Emera Oval and they even rent out skates! I love my city! I think the community helps to keep my motivated to get out and do things as well because even when the weather is less than favorable people are still out. There are always people walking, walking where I don’t know but it’s just nice to see that people are not afraid of a little bit of winter and don’t let it ruin their day.
Skating on The Oval
Posted in Halifax Life | Tagged Adam Washburn, Like A Motorcycle, Music Nova Scotia, Quiet Parade, Take it to The Tiki, The Regal Beagle Band, Weather, Winter | Leave a Comment »
I’m going through a pretty intense reading phase right now. Ever since the new Central Library opened up here in Halifax, I’ve been reading non-stop. It helps that the library is located a block away from my workplace. At least once a week after work, I’ll pop into the library to look for a specific book or nothing specific at all and just wander around the beautiful space.
I’ve been diving into some classic Japanese writing (Murakami) and exploring some different manga themes as well. When I was living in Japan ボーイズ ラブ (Boys love) manga was (and probably still is) extremely popular among women of all ages. The name of it makes it sound like some sort of weird comic that would be written by and targeted at pedophiles but it’s not. Boys love manga is mostly written/drawn by women and the characters are young (20+) kakkoi men who somehow become romantically involved. The popularity of this genre of manga intrigued me enough to actually pick one up at the library and see what all the fuss is about. The one I’m reading, Ichigenme takes place in a law school in Tokyo. I haven’t gotten that far into it, so I can’t yet tell you if I like it.
Here’s an interesting article and interview on boys’ love manga.
I’ve also been thirsty for new music and have been soaking into the new Taylor Swift album which I enjoy much more than I thought I would. It’s a brilliant pop album and I think it’ll be one that will stay relevant and people will still enjoy years from now. I’m also stoked on the new Sleater-Kinney album. I’m just stoked that they’re back together and doing music again. Carrie Brownstein is brilliant and I love her.
The thing that has made me the most happy recently (besides my #CoPilot) is this song. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
*I’m totally going to start incorporating the Kendrick Lamar dance into my regular routine
Posted in Halifax Life | Tagged ボーイズ ラブ, boys love, Halifax Central Library, Ichigenme, Japanese, manga, Sleater-Kinney, Taylor Swift | Leave a Comment »
Look out, little people!
Go big or go home
Family reunion of sorts
(Mostly) Paleo Christmas Dinner
My first lemon meringue pie
Boxing Day #ootd
December 29, 2014 – It’s still fall
January 2, 2015 – now, it’s winter
Posted in Halifax Life | Tagged Christmas, family, food, holidays, snow, Winter | Leave a Comment »
The craziness that is Christmas is beginning to wind down. After a wonderful visit, my mom has gone back to the island and I’ve got the place to myself for an undetermined amount of time until my roommates return. This holiday season has been more introspective than years passed and I’ve learned a lot about myself and even had a few epiphanies.
I’m going to recap and reminisce about the year the old fashioned way instead of relying on Facebook or some other form of social media to recap the year for me. In reality all of the most significant moments that occurred in my life this year were not posted to Facebook or Instagramed or even tweeted, they were experienced and shared with some very special people.
I’ve heard that whatever you’re doing as the old year rolls into the new year is what you’ll be doing for the rest of the year. Well, last year I was ringing in the New Year with drinks in Halifax and now Halifax is my home.
It was right around the beginning of 2014 that I had enough of the endless, depressing winter in Fredericton and decided to do something about my life. I convinced myself that moving back to Japan would be the best thing for me and I got the ball rolling. As you already know, this didn’t work out the way I expected but am very happy with the way that it did. I’m working as a baker and have a pastry school goal in mind and am able to spend more time with a special someone that came into my life this year.
All of the significant events of 2014 came unexpectedly and unplanned, as if the universe was forcing things into my life. So even though 2014 started out a bit sad and stressful, I’m sailing into 2015 with nothing but positive things and people in my life and I couldn’t be happier.
Here’s to all the wonderful people that came into my life in 2014 and to those that never left, you know who you are.
Happy New Year
Posted in Canadian Life | Tagged friendship, happiness, Love, New Year, retrospective | Leave a Comment »