Friday, April 29, 2011

Okay, folks, I'm gonna be working on figuring out how to let y'all make comments on my blog! Just fyi.... :-)

Friday, April 22, 2011

Oh my lonely blog! I've returned!

Chewey loves it here... in the apartment. He saw a cockroach on the porch tonight. That is about as exciting as his life gets, but he doesn't mind. He sleeps a lot.

Ryan is killing it at school! He's got finals in a couple of weeks, and studies so hard. He's nearly perfect on keeping his anxiety in control; it's one of my favorite things about him. Never comes home in a bad mood, never takes anything out on me. I admire that trait of his so much! His hair is growing out into the cute curly hair shag. And he made the best spicy meatballs for my spaghetti last night! Mm-mmm!

We have been together for four years now. Started dating/courting mid-April 2007. What an awesome, crazy, insane, fabulous, hilarious, ridiculous, incredulous adventure it's been with him!

And I find that I am quite happy here. Quite, quite, quite!!

I've created a FB page of my fitness business in Grenada. It is called StrongJourney. (Keeping your body strong/getting it stronger on this journey on the island. Cheesy, I know.) I hope to expand my work with training individuals/ group exercise/ running groups/ yoga classes with the page. I train a girl named Sarah (she calls it Bridal Bootcamp), run with a girl named Allison, teach yoga to a girl named Lexi, and get my rear kicked with Jon and his Navy-inspired bootcamp exercises.

I bought a second-hand food processor yesterday, and I made the best hummus and pita chips in the world this evening!! So proud of myself! Lol, this is why I've never had superficial self-esteem issues: I learned how to puff up my own head on seriously pathetic stuff! Yes, I know I'm pretty absurd, but at least I know it, right? Ryan once told me that he read that people who had clinical depression tended to truly have a more realistic outlook on life... Well, that counts me out!

Today I finally went swimming, like with goggles, in the ocean. And you know what?
  • The water got in my mouth about 2 strokes in--SO UNBELIEVABLY NASTY! I couldn't get rid of the 6-bags-of-potato-chips-gone-stale taste in my mouth until the second time I brushed my teeth when I got home. It would've been better if I'd brought a bottle of water with me and could rinse my mouth out. So I'll do that next time!
  • Goggles=knowledge=scary. It was scary because the 4:00 sun was still bright enough to shine down to the ocean floor. Holy cow, I realized that I like not knowing how deep it could be to the bottom and what could be swimming underneath me. I thought I saw a huge octopus for a split, splashy second, but it was only some moss on a huge rock. Jess, just don't look down. More proof of how weird I am: I'm not afraid to look down from heights that with gravity's help could overcome me and I'd die (think Angel's Landing). I'm uneasy of looking down into something that I can't fall down into. The irony confuses me...
  • Good points:
    • My bikini bottoms didn't get untied and sink down into the abyss and I'd have to climb out onto the public beach. Sorry folks, no Stupid American Woman Tush-Baring this time!
    • No huge octopus
    • No drowning or breathing problems at all
    • No one is interested in a pair of unattended flip-flops and beach towel
    • Even if I did look like a blundering idiot, I'm a lone, foreign white girl. People looking at me seemed to have little or no expectations of me!
And okay!! Okay, I admit it! You got it out of me...  I currently have a secret passion for vampire smut entertainment. I'm currently watching both first season of True Blood and both US and UK versions of Being Human. Oh, the gluttony is indescribable! And my friend Allison gave me pdf files for the books Sookie Stockhouse (the books True Blood is based on) and the Anita Blake vampire series.

Well, I can only go running and swimming and make hummus so much! :-)

Silly and fun!

A bananaquit on my veranda! They're like Caribbean sparrows.

"Um, can you get me out? I don't know how!"

I think he's turning into a cat... :-(

A view of the west from where I teach my private yoga sessions.

My amazing private yoga student, winding down her practice.

The moron TV weather reporter with his parrot puppet.

This idiot, I swear, cannot possibly have a journalism degree. Sigh, he even makes the parrot talk sometimes.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Animals of Grenada

I wrote this weeks ago, but didn't have all of the pictures I wanted. I know it's long, I won't feel bad if you get bored! Haha!

Goats: Goats seem to be the best green landscaping machines out there. Business for them is booming! Someone across the street owns a small herd, and I see it in a different part of the mountain every day. They are all a little fat, and the more power to them! I feel for the people who have to use only their machetes and strained, bent backs in the hot sun with to cut back on the constant growing things. I bet they wish they had goats. Chewey loves the goats more than I do, needless to say. He is a pathetic carnivore representative. I doubt he knows what he’ll do IF he manages to bolt out of my control and officially meet one of them. If there is a conflict, I know he will lose. Of course, once he realized that goats existed on this planet, he noticed that they make bleating sounds on one occasional evening. He rang his bell and whined shrilly, to which I replied with my own imitated bleating. It’s a sure sign that his wheel’s running, but his hamster is dead—he totally bought the trick I played on him!

Frogs: One night a few weeks ago, I took Chewey out for his last Baño of the day. I was tired and impatient (why won’t he poop?!), until Chewey lurched away from some moving creature by the chain link fence. I reacted- “CHEWEY! BACK!” and took a jump towards the situation. My thoughts were like lightening: “It’s a rat, I know it, and he can’t get attacked by a rat, because he’ll lose the fight and then he’ll die, and Ryan will be so mad because he cost too much to get down here…”  And by the time my feet landed from my jump, I realized that the rat was hopping like an apple-sized frog. Because it was an apple-sized frog.
On a more recent and less exciting night, I happened upon a similar frog on a step leading up to my apartment. He was very sweet-looking. On the step below him, was a quarter-sized frog. He reminded me of the ones my brothers were always trying to catch around ponds in desert Utah, which brought a smile to my face.

One rat: At the last yoga class I attended, we began practice by centering in a cobbler’s pose lying down.  It was a fabulous start-of-yoga-class idea, I thought, until I noticed a rat turn around on the highest rafter of the high ceiling… I suppose I was the only one who saw it, class continued without rift…

Stray dogs: Not too skinny, but very thin. Huge nipples on some of them (think the Remus-Romulus-wolf statue). I don’t want to touch them for fear of passing their bugs onto Chewey. They all seem sweet-tempered and related. And they somehow always manage to get out of the way of zooming traffic, thankfully.

Birds: There are 3 kinds of birds that I’ve seen around. The first are the darling little bananaquits, which have sharp, finch-like beaks, are either light brown or black, and are tinier than mice. Adorable! 

The second are the toddler-height cranes, which are like a Caribbean swan—snow white feathers, bright crayon-orange beaks and toothpick legs, and a graceful walks. 

The third are the mad magpies. (That’s what I call them; I have yet to learn what their proper and unapologetic name is.) These birds look mad as a bird could look without foaming at the beak. They are mostly all black and are as brave as the Utahn magpies I’ve learned tolerate. They are the size of robins, but have a fierce and piercing cry. Let me give you an idea on how they sound: Remember the cute mice on Disney’s Cinderella? One scene, Jaq the lead mouse in red clothes comes up with an idea to get past the bully cat and get corn kernels for their breakfast. Just before they “draw tails” for the decoy part, the mice exclaim their approval for the plan unanimously. It’s a cute ‘short-short-long’ response, but now that you know the sound… Imagine the mice are pissed. Imagine they curse in the last long note. And now make it into a whistle. That’s the pissed-off mad magpie bird call. 

Lizards: Everywhere. More than birds and goats and dogs combined. I walk four steps outside my door and four lizards flee away from me. They are not pests and so amusing to watch. Some are teeny and green; some are almost a foot in length and bluish. They are terrified of everything, even Chewey. Sigh, at least something’s more skittish than Chewey…

Vile mosquitoes: They find me at the washer/dryer. They love me at the yoga center. I doubt they like anyone else but me there—before we finish with our centering pose at the beginning of the class, I have been assaulted 8 times. They attack my feet during a Warrior pose, and it’s the only time during those asana variations that I feel helpless. By the time I leave the yoga center, my arms look like I have some type of pox. Luckily, the mini-Voldemorts are a little less clever than those from other places I’ve visited. Although I catch them in the act quite frequently, they’ve been the easiest to clap to death in midair.

Bats: I love the hand-sized bats. When I see them, I coo like I coo over puppies. They are as beautiful as the island’s twilight itself. They make my Grenada world a wonderful place. I send them good-hunting energy when they flutter far above my head and pray they fill their bellies with the evil mosquitoes.

Crabs: I look for these crabs along the sidewalk every time I journey to the IGA grocery store. The red-and-yellow crabs are easy to spot against their mud holes they’ve dug in the mud and grass. The crab suburbs are so entertaining! Sometimes only one is out of his hole, sometimes dozens of them are out and about. Probably having the same types of neighborhood drama as any crab suburb…
Can you see him?