Monday, January 31, 2005

Monday meanderings

Well I had a great weekend, starting off with the arrival of Steph, Tara, and Becca on Friday night. It was great to see Goshen people again. After giving them the tour of the house (which takes a considerable amount of time) we started a game of Cherche L'Boche (I always misspell that) and then went to Meijers to get smoothie ingredients. Then we made good use of my jacuzzi and I must say I have never had that many people in the same tub as me before :) Which I must say is one more reason I love being a woman, I don't think guys would ever all take a bath together and for that I say they are missing out! So several hours after Steph's goal of 11pm we went to sleep. Then on Saturday, while Steph was at her meeting, Tara, Becca and I went to Broad Ripple to do a little thrift/vintage shopping. And Tara found a great wedding dress, but decided not to get it and instead bought the sexy black shoes. Oh and before that we had a late brunch at IHOP, which while yummy definitely provides all the needed fat and sugar for a week. When we finished shopping, we headed back to Peace House and Becca and I made sour cream sugar cookies (yummy!). I am really happy that Steph will be coming to Indy every month, because that will allow me to see her and other friends who come along in nice intervals. Anyways after they all headed out, me and the rest of the Peacers got Church's fried chicken and rented the movie Y Tu Mama Tambien, which was a really great movie. Definitely not one to watch with your parents, or anyone you wouldn't want to see some pretty explicit sex scenes with. But unfortunately we could only find the R rated version and not the unrated, which normally wouldn't be a problem, except some of the critical scenes of the movie are sex scenes and therefore were cut out. Oh and another good reason to watch the movie (actually two reasons) are Gael Garcia Bernel and his equally attractive co-star. So if you are in the mood for some explicit sex scenes, amazing acting and writing, and the gorgeous Mexican landscape I recommend it. Then on Sunday morning Anna, David and I got all dressed up for 11 o'clock mass, but were extremely disappointed to find out that it was at 10:30am. So after returning home and doing some homework I made a casserole to use up our old bread (thanks to Meryl for the inspiration on the rumblytumbly blog) So all in all a good weekend, and looking forward to a good week.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

although all of you should know this by now

Tim just posted news of his engagement on the Shoup blog and posted such a cute picture that I had to borrow it from him and post it now. Isn't my brother funny and isn't char cute? Gosh I love those too (and if you think of it keep them in your thoughts cause they are separated by an ocean, a sea and a few coastlines for the next few months) Go see the picture here.

yingers and yangers

Productive things done today: got up out of bed (okay 20 minutes late, but still quite an accomplishment) ate some raisin bran caught my bus on time arrived at work on time went through all research in order to produce a timeline of African-Americans involved in the Media in Indianapolis drank several cups of water Non-Productive things done today: pressed snooze button twice checked email around 15 times looked up on-line diet plans checked blog 5 times looked at The Onion on-line decided to browse personals, decided to create my own profile (yes I am a dork) spent 20 minutes determining witty ways to describe myself (failed miserably but published anyways) spent 10 minutes browsing other profiles wrote this post Oh and on a side note, I have received the really exciting news that Steph AND Becca AND Tara are all coming to visit me this weekend!!! Happy Abby!

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

today the office, tomorrow the world

Well today I am spending all of my time in the office. After arriving here at 9am, I finally was assigned my very own badge which does such exciting things as proclaims me "Intern 936" and opens the elevator door to the offices. Since I arrived I have been working on a timeline for African-Americans involved in journalism, which although an interesting topic, I feel that I have beaten to death seeing as I have over 6 pages of dates and still have no idea how this will be used. KT asked me this morning if I was having fun and assured me that she wouldn't be offended if I wasn't, but even so I couldn't quite say that I was really bored and felt trapped in a random office doing work that remained unconnected from any actual work. But on the plus side I have been working in one of the extra side offices, which has a big window and my own computer. So I have been checking my email approximately every hour. So this internship isn't awful, but the fact that lunch today was the highlight of it doesn't speak highly. I think when it comes down to it, I just feel unconnected from people and from meaningful work. I really should talk to KT about it, but she seems to have enough stress right now. But on the brighter side of life, today is sunny and warmer than yesterday. Oh and I haven't had any of the amazingly horrible cramps that I had yesterday so that makes me one happy girl.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Peace House Letter #3

We finished up our first full week of having both internships and classes to attend this past week. The combination definitely lessens the large amount of free time we were enjoying previously, but getting into the routine is nice too. This weekend my parents drove down to see me and deliver a few key items such as my computer and my sewing machine. I gave them the tour of the house and introduced them to my house mates. Samuka cooked a good west African meal for us and afterwords we sat around talking for some time. It was really nice to see them again and for them to now have a mental picture of where I live and a little better idea what my life is like. Saturday morning we drove up to Broad Ripple, an area full of little shops and cafes around College and 62nd St, for lunch. We ate at Three Sisters, which was the same place our house had eaten when we went up there our first weekend here. I really like the restaurant, because it has a wide variety of choices and a lot of vegetarian options. My parents then left shortly after to return home and deal with all the snow Northern Indiana seems to be attracting. Earlier this week I began my internship at the State Museum. I get up three days a week at 7:30am to catch the bus to work. I then work from 9 until 5, both of which are making me realize how wonderful some aspects of college life really are. Overall my internship has not been as good as I had been expecting. My boss, KT, has been experiencing a lot of stress from her personal life, I believe her Mother is in the hospital, so the work I have been doing has often not been really explained to me which leads to feeling like a personal assistant than an intern. But the exhibit KT is working on is a really interesting one called Spread the Word. It focuses on African Americans in various media outlets including radio, television, and newspaper. I continue to hope that things will improve with the internship once KT doesn't have as much stress on her life and hopefully her mother improves. One highlight of the week was going with the house to see the movie "Finding Neverland", which I would highly recommend. It tells the story of the author of Peter Pan and his real life inspiration found in a widowed mother and her four boys. We went to see it at a downtown theater that costs 1 dollar for students with the catch that you must buy one item from their menu. While the popcorn still cost 4 dollars, my total ticket came only to 5 dollars, not bad for a movie in the city. During the past few days here it has been snowing some, which although bothersome when one is waiting for the bus, makes this house and the surrounding neighborhood even more beautiful. I hope you all have a wonderful week.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

okay so about that internship

Well I went to the first day of my internship yesterday and wasn't exactly awesome. I don't know exactly what I was expecting but spending most of the afternoon in a very cold cubicle in a big office full of people staring at computers and checking facts wasn't exactly my cup of tea. But I did manage the bus system all by myself and stopped by the library on the way back and got my library card for M_____ County. Unfortunately that meant I had a 20 minute walk home because I didn't want to spend another 1.25 and did I mention that yesterday was cold and I mean bitter sap all your breath cold? However back to the internship, I am trying to stay positive and remember that there are really good people at the State museum and some nice perks and that KT (my mentor/supervisor) was really stressed out and not having the best day (her car broke down on the way to work so she was 2 hours late) either. So I am keeping my fingers crossed for tomorrow and I am gonna wear my sexy boots for luck :) Which reminds me I also didn't see a single guy my age, attractive or not so much, basically all older married men or women....... But hey I guess I can always try to pick up guys on the bus. For example the rather large man who rode the bus this morning and when attempting to get off had difficulty keeping his pants up and lets just say I don't like crack.

Monday, January 17, 2005

thongs, sexy boots and cold bus trips

The title of this blog has to do with both today and some what this past weekend. Starting with last friday I attended Friday prayers and a Muslim mosque with Miriam and some other peacers. It was a really interesting experience, I had never been to a mosque before and I found the prayers very beautiful. However the sermon-type thing was quite long and blended Arabic with English which led to me being mainly confused instead of enlightened. Also this mosque was rather small so instead of having separate areas in a larger room for men and women, the men met in the main space and the women met in smaller adjacent rooms. It was however very interesting to see all the different women pray together and where different clothes from around the world. This mosque is fairly international and had many different backgrounds represented including East African, Arab and even Indian. That afternoon Miram, David and I went to the mall and I found this great pair of knee-high boots which I have been wanting for a really long time. They were on sale for $40 and black and shiny! I feel very sexy in them and both of my male housemates seem to think they are pretty "hot" too. The great thing is that they aren't too spify to be worn under pants or a skirt, they work both ways! Other highlights from the weekend include seeing the movie "A Very Long Engagement" which has the same star as Amelie and is set just after WWI. It was good, but much more dramatic and had more violence in it than I had expected. I would recommend it and it definitely leaves one even more sure of the stupidity and waste of war. I visited First Mennonite with Anna on Sunday and enjoyed the service. I ran into Carole Walker from my old floor and she may be my link to getting my bike down here, which would be great. I also played the mennonite game a little bit and found a man who is first cousins with my Dad and has a daughter Sarah who is working in London and has met Tim! After the service, Erv (the director of Plowshares) and his wife Priscella took us out to a really yummy Indian lunch buffet called India Palace. It was amazing! Then today all of us except Samuka went Musuem hopping because as Martin Luther King Day three of the major museums were free. We also took buses in an attempt to accustom ourselves to the city transportation. It was really neat, I looked up our routes on the computer, printed out the time table and got all of us around. I am really enjoying getting to know this city and learning to orient myself. During a break in our museum viewing we stopped for lunch at the Circle Center Mall Foodcourt and then afterwards we visited Victoria Secret's semi-annual sale and I purchased my first thong! So what are you girls' opinions or thongs? Good, bad, or just ugly? :) So that's an update on my past few days. Oh and it is looking like my visit to Columbus with Miriam and gang in order to celebrate Eid (a Muslim holiday similar to Christmas) with her family won't be happening. But my parents might visit me, which would be really awesome!

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Peace House Letter #2

It has been almost a week and half since my arrival at Peace House and things have been going really well. This week we had our first full week of classes. We started out with our Urban Peace and Justice Issues class on Monday afternoon with JH Jr (for those of you who went on the Indy Fall Break Service with me in 2003 he was the director of Horizon House). It looks to be an interesting course, however seeing as John has not taught a course previous to this he still has some learning to do. But his varied experiences and enthusiasm help make up for that. Then on Tuesday I had my interview with KT from the State Museum. She is really enthusiastic about having me work with her and had really good things to say about Laura Rheinheimer (also from Goshen) who interned at the Museum over the summer. I also found out that the State Museum will be hosting an exhibit about Lord of the Rings the movie trilogy!! Which as most of you know really makes me happy, however the exhibit won't be installed until Oct 6, 2005, so I will have to wait till I get back from China. Tuesday evening was also very memorable in that I watched the movie Amistad for the first time. It tells the story of a ship of Africans captured and sold into slavery who overthrew their captors, yet were fooled into sailing to the States. The movie follows their legal battle to be returned to their homelands along the west coast of Africa and takes place in 1839. I had not seen the movie previously and found to be very moving movie but what made it even more interesting was that the language spoken by the Africans was Mende which is the mother tongue of Samuka. He translated to use several parts of the movie and both he and Miriam added a lot of insight. Then Wednesday we had our first class of Methods of Peacemaking with MM, which was really exciting. She has over 25 years of experience teaching law and working as an activist, so I think the course will go very well. The class also really connected with some of the themes brought up by the viewing of Amistad. I continue to really enjoy getting to know my housemates and we seem to be getting along very well. This week I also got to test out my rice cooker and vegetable steamer, discovering that it worked very well for both and seems to be a very valuable addition to our kitchen. Thanks to those of you who have kept me updated on your own lives, I hope things continue to go well for you (especially those who are also away from home).

Monday, January 10, 2005

I wonder as I wander

This weekend has been a rather good one, although I am discovering that as a group we tend to be rather laid-back and loungish. But that can be very good too! So a recap of what we did (at this point we are still doing most everything together, which will actually change this week, so as Anna keeps pointing out we will actually have things to talk about as a group over dinner). Saturday was a sleep in day (until 11am). Then Emily and Ruth took us to catch our first bus and we went up College Ave. to this little shopping "village" called Broad Ripple. Apparently it used to be quite the alternative place that catered to youth and a more diverse section of people. However it has been becoming a more yuppie type place and they passed a no skateboarding ordinance which really diminished its youth population. So while there are still really nice shops, some more pricy stuff has moved in. We started off of the afternoon with an amazing brunch/lunch at the Three Sisters. I had a sausage, mushroom, feta and avocado omelet which was incredible. Everyone else seemed to get really fantastic food as well. Then Ruth headed off and we hit the natural foods store to do so stocking up for our kitchen. We got various dry goods and then discovered their spice section. Amazing prices! We got things like curry for .40 cents per ounce! And an ounce is quite a lot. I am never gonna look at those spice bottle in the grocery stores the same. After that we wondered around some more, checking out thrift stores and other little odd shops. Then we got some ice cream at Ben and Jerry's, said goodbye to Emily and caught the bus (all by ourselves) back home. After all that we sat down and tried to figure what we wanted to do with our evening. Due to our limited funds, still very limited knowledge of the city, we were uncertain of what to do. So finally around 9pm we decided to go to Meijers and do our big round of stock-up shopping. $140 dollars later, our kitchen is looking much more livable and much more full. Sunday morning we all went to Shalom Mennonite and connected with a bunch of parents of GCers who attend there. It was a good service and I could see returning there, however I am afraid Assembly has spoiled me for hymn singing, Shalom just couldn't compare. But I may return at a later point, because right now the plan is to visit a variety of churches/mosques/synagogues while we have the opportunity to. Sunday afternoon/evening was more of the laid back relaxing, broken up by a trip to Circle Center mall where we wondered around for a while and I found a really nice pair of too-expensive boots. Then we went to see Lemony Snicket's A series of unfortunate events, which was pretty good for a children's movie. Although the books sound better. So that is pretty much the weekend, so far only Anna and I are awake this morning and I should get going, because I am planning on walking down to O'Malia's to pick up some turkey sausage for my dinner tomorrow night.

Friday, January 07, 2005

it's friday night and we ain't doin anything

Considering all the amazing opportunities Indy has to offer, you think us here at peace house would be doing amazing things, right? Well no, we are sleeping, bummin, typing, or writing. But hey it has been a long week. The library I am currently sitting is quiet, lit by the chandelier overhead. The shelves are dark wood, but mainly empty (Peace House has yet to acquire a full library). There are two computers in the corner of the room, I sit at one, Samuka sits at another. I am wearing my new brown hat that I just crocheted my self, it matches my entirely tan and brown outfit. Well I think I am going to wonder off in search of more intriguing things to do. Goodnight

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Peace House letter #1

As probably all of you know by now I am not on the Goshen campus this semester and I am instead participating in the Indianapolis Peace House program. The program consists of two peace and justice related courses, an internship and living together with the 4 other participants in an old house located in the Old Northside of Indy. So far I have only really experienced the third part of the program and so far it is wonderful. There are 5 of us in the program, myself, Anna Yoder, David Martinez, Miriam Muhomad, Samuko Koroma. The first 3 all attend Goshen, however other than Anna, I really didn't know any of them from on campus. So far I really like them all, and we are quite diverse, Miriam although born in the states is from a Muslim background from Somalia, David was born in Mexico, and Samuka is from Sierre Leon. Also Anna and I are the only Mennonites! These past two days have been filled with orientation which has included icebreakers such as "what's your favorite color?" and some deeper discussions about what community is and how to create it. Although originally scheduled for tomorrow the 5 of us got the room selection decision out of the way the first night and like last semester's group decided to just keep the rooms we were randomly assigned. Our first attempt at consensus seemed to work well in that everyone seemed satisfied with their room. That has worked out well for me in that I am going to be residing in the master bedroom which is quite large, contains two closets (one of which I may convert into a sewing room), a jacuzzi and a sauna. I have been dealing with some feelings of guilt about the niceness of my room, which I account to my high level of Mennonite indoctrination about simple living. So while I do have my own bathroom I have promised the rest of the house that the jacuzzi and sauna are there to be used. Today a large part of our orientation in the afternoon was spent going on an informational scavenger hunt of our neighborhood, which was quite enjoyable (despite the very cold temperatures). We were divided into two groups, myself and David on one and Anna, Miriam, and Samuko on the other. As motivation we decided to make the losing team vacuum the high-traffic parts of the house. David and I won, but only by one point! It turned out to be a really great way to see the neighborhood and get some much needed exercise (considering that we walked for over 2 hours).

Tuesday, January 04, 2005


So Peace House is HUGE!!!!! and gorgeous, I'll try to get some pictures of it to show you all, but it may be a bit because our orientation schedule is pretty full. We were randomly assigned rooms to start off and I got lucky. Yours truly is living in the master bedroom with a jacuzzi, sauna and walkin closet. Well gotta go eat. write more later