nomoreuturns: city by the lake (Chicago)
[personal profile] nomoreuturns
I've been back in Australia for three and a half weeks. My last few hours in Paris were insane...I got back to Paris from London at 11.30pm the night before, so I arrived back at my apartment at 11.45pm. I did some repacking of my suitcases, then went to sleep on the sofa (so as not to mess up the bed) at about 2am.

I woke up at 7am to finish repacking and cleaning. I'd done an in-depth clean before I left for the UK, sweeping and vacuuming and dusting and so on, so all I had left to do was the final touches: wiping down counters, taking out the trash, etc. I finished all that, and was out the door by 10am.

I have deleted a long, rambly few paragraphs about getting to the airport and the flights and the homecoming, but suffice it to say that: I made it safely out of Paris (despite Paris' best efforts to the contrary); the flights were OK (the first better than the second); KUL is a decent airport (despite the WiFi not working and the security guards stealing the nail scissors that made it through CDG perfectly fine); Australia wasn't so bad to come back to; I'd slept 13 hours over four days, so it took another four days to get over the jet lag; and...

I HAS A MITZIE-MOO AND A JUJUBEAN!!! \o/ Mitzie recognized me when I got home, I think...she's known me for years, and is used to me going off for long periods of time. Julian was more stand-offish, but quickly succumbed to cuddles. I'm not sure if he recognizes me, or is just that friendly a cat...probably a little of Column A, a little of Column B. It's so good to see them, though; I missed having animals around. Apart from the brief span between when our cat Wanda died when I was nearly three and when we got Kitty-Mouse when I was four, we've always had at least one pet in our household. In Paris I lived near a lot of pet stores, so I'd go in and have a look every so often, but it just wasn't the same.

So. It is good to be back. I've kind of mellowed towards Australia. I still don't want to live here long term, but...yeah. It's good to be back. :)

**


Approximately 28 days until I leave for the States! In the words of kids today: I am excite! I've been spending these past three weeks getting all my ducks lined up in a row: getting my study plan figured out and approved, getting accommodation sorted, and getting all the loose ends from Sciences Po tied up.

Speaking of which, I passed all my courses! \o/ My transcript was released online about a week ago, and my time in Paris was certainly not wasted. :) I was concerned about my marks for Contemporary Domestic Politics of the US, as I was really sick the last two days before it was due (marathon puking ftw! /o\), and ended up having a nervous break-down in the last hour before it was due (as in full-on panic attack, couldn’t breathe, couldn’t think, couldn’t function, uncontrollable tears type of nervous break-down), but according to the mark breakdown I actually did OK on it. Thank Christ.

My visa application interview was at 1.45pm last Tuesday in Sydney. It was approved! So happy. :) Now I just need to wait a week for my passport to come back, and then I can purchase my flights! ...which may be more of a drama than I thought, because apparently the shortest travel time between Brisbane and Chicago takes 30 hours, which...no. A thousand times NO. I am not spending 30 hours in planes and airports when the flight should only take 17 hours. Going to have to do some shopping around to find the best deal...gods damn it.

**


Consider this your spoiler alert! Spoilers may or may not be discussed for each film, but if you don't want to be spoiled, better to be safe than sorry.

I know I'm late to the party, but OH MY GOD NEVER LET ME GO IS HEARTBREAKING AND TERRIFYING. D: D: D: With the...and the...and she...and he...and they... *FLAIL* I think the worst scene was when they were harvesting Ruth's liver, and she died completed DIED, and they just...did nothing. There was no commotion, no frantic rush as they tried to save her. They just finished the harvest, put the liver in the bag, and washed their hands of her. It makes me wonder what happens after that...do they even bother to stitch them up, or just cart them down to the morgue with open incisions? I don't suppose they bury them...a cemetery of donors would be too much of a rude reminder to the general populace that yes, donors are people too, and might provide a rallying point for disgruntled donors. So they must incinerate them...do they just have a giant furnace that they put all the bodies of the day in? Gods above.

Overall, I enjoyed it! Andrew Garfield was great as Peter (so adorkable!), Emma Stone is as lovely as always, and Rhys Ifans was fantastic as Dr Connors. I’m not reading too much into it...the action was fun, the science was...interesting, Peter and Gwen were hilarious and ridiculous and lovely together, Dr Connors’ actions – while reprehensible – were understandable, and the guy in the shadows? Creepy. As. F*ck.

I have mixed feelings about the ending, with George Stacy using his final dying request to make Peter promise to protect Gwen by keeping her out of his life. On the one hand, he was trying to protect his daughter, so...y’know, fair enough? But on the other hand ot both denies Gwen her own agency by taking her ability to choose for herself out of the equation and puts Peter in a pretty awful and lonely position. And so Peter’s decision to disregard George’s final dying request is therefore incredibly troubling (YOU DO NOT DISREGARD FINAL REQUESTS PETER) yet inevitable occurrence...I mean, he’s a 17-year-old for Christ’s sake, of course he’s going to go the emotional route. *facepalm*

I...don’t really know what to make of Prometheus. I haven’t seen the Alien movies, but I figured I didn’t really have to, which is true enough...it could probably stand alone without any problems.

It’s hard to pinpoint exactly why Prometheus didn’t work for me, but I think it’s the plot. There’s a certain disjointedness to it that makes the film drag and stutter it’s way along. It’s not particularly hard to follow; in fact, it’s pretty straight-forward. But it feels like one of those films where they had so much footage and they thought fuck it...we’ll edit it down to two hours and call it a day, never minding that some of the plotlines don’t wrap up (yes, I know they’ve got a sequel planned, but really) or some of the plot-points are just plain stupid.

The main point that annoyed me? Ms Vickers was crushed by the Engineer’s space ship, while Elizabeth survived. They were both running under the space ship as it crashed/rolled...the shadow fell over both of them as they ran. The incredibly skinny shadow of the ship, which Elizabeth was able to get out from under by rolling a few times. Why didn’t they both just run out from under the shadow of the ship – it would’ve taken 10 seconds – and then continue on to the escape vessel? Then we could’ve had two kick-ass female characters beating the Engineer and the Squid-Thing, and more awesome antagonistic snark between David and Ms Vickers.

I pretty much loved everything about this! I loved Merida, I loved the triplets, I loved Elinor and Fergus. I loved the wood-carving witch and her crotchety crow familiar. I loved the will-o’-the-wisps. I loved that Merida was strong and smart and knew what she wanted and wasn’t afraid to go after it, and how she got along so well with her brothers and her father and mended her relationship with her mother, and how she could be gracious and stubborn and admit she was wrong and stand up for herself when she was right and her hair was glorious. Just...so. Much. Love. ♥n

**


I am overweight and unfit right now, so I'm doing something about it. I've got a a gym membership that lasts 'til I leave for the States, I'm back into krav maga, and I bought my mum Wii Fit/Wii Fit Plus/the Wii Balance Board as an early birthday present and have been using those, too. My plan is to go to krav on Mondays and Wednesdays, the gym as often as possible but at least three days a week (Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays seem to be the best option), do some sort of self-generated exercise on Fridays (walking, swimming, archery...), and use the Wii every day. Sunday will be a rest day (except for the Wii). I've got to lose at least 15kgs (33lbs) to reach my goal and be at a healthy weight, and I'm aiming to lose 20% of that before I leave for UIUC. No sweat, right? ...right?!

So, I'm most of the way through the second week and I've got mixed feelings. My muscles are pretty unhappy with me right now. I haven't been going all out at gym and krav but I have been going pretty hard, so my arms are screaming "WHAT IS THIS SHIT?" and my stomach muscles are saying "ARE YOU CRAZY WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS TO US?" and my legs are yelling "DO YOU HATE US IS THIS WHAT THIS IS?"...but I'm pretty happy about that, to be honest. :) I went to krav on Wednesday last week and this past Monday. I’m easing back into it, but it’s great! I'm out of practice, but I'm better than I was after Vancouver (understandable...shorter time away, after all), and it’s good fun.

What’s mixed is my feelings with the Wii Balance Board and Wii Fit/Wii Fit Plus. I'm enjoying the activities and all...they're great fun! But it can be pretty disheartening to watch my BMI fluctuate. My second day was encouraging...it dipped down, and I was pretty stoked, but then it soared back up again so I was pretty bummed. But it seems to be working its way down in a sort of zig-zag pattern. I’ve lost 1.2kg, so I’m a little behind schedule, but still doing OK, so I think I’ll call it a win?

The thing that kills me, though? I always thought I was fat in high school. I was 5' 6" and 64.5kgs, and I thought I was fat. I was perfectly fine. Sure, I wasn’t as skinny as the cliquey athletic girls (read: 85% of my age group), but they were verging on too skinny...I could’ve snapped most of them in half like a carrot. So why the hell did I think that? So pissed off...if I’d just kept up that level of exercise and kept eating like I was back then, I would’ve been fine. Instead, I thought I was fat and that nothing I could do would make me slimmer, and I let myself go. So. Fucking. Pissed.

**


OK. OK. OK. So. I went and saw the Dark Knight Trilogy marathon last night at Garden City’s Event Cinemas. It started at 6pm: Batman Begins, The Dark Knight, and then at midnight The Dark Knight Rises. We (I dragged my mum along) saw the first two films in the normal cinema, then moved to Gold Class for The Dark Knight Rises...totally worth it. Reclining arm chairs, delectable munchies brought to your seat...so good.

Non-spoilery reaction...oh my ever-loving god. I was pretty damn impressed. The cast was amazing (major kudos to Tom Hardy...the amount he can do with just his eyes is pretty amazing). I liked the story...in a balance of +s and –s, the +s came out on top, and most of the –s I could handwave away without too much trouble. There...is possibly a tiny continuity issue, but I’d need to see it again to be sure.

I’m going to post a more in-depth recap/discussion in a bit...there’s so much to squee over! This recap will have ALL the spoilers, so only read it if you’ve seen the movie or don’t care about being spoiled all to hell. And once you’ve seen the film, please comment here or there or on Twitter or Facebook or through GChat or AIM or something and SQUEE WITH ME BECAUSE AAAAAAAHHHHHHHH BATMAN.

ba da ba da ba da ba da ba da BAH BAH! tag brought to you by my two-year-old self, who used to drop everything whenever the old school live-action Batman show came on the TV so I could bob along to the theme song and yell "ba da ba da ba da ba da ba da BAH BAH!" at the top of my lungs before watching them BIFF! and POW! and ZAPP! their way through another episode.
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nomoreuturns: Things have changed for me (Default)
a pessimistically optimistic realist

October 2012

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