Saturday, January 31, 2009

So Much Easier

Good news! I found out that I won't have to go through the whole, lengthy application process again this year when my 2 year Green Card work permit expires. Instead I get to go ahead and apply for Long-Term Residence. But, since the law to allow LTR is apparently still hung up in the Dail, the government will allow us to get an interim (and highly coveted) Stamp 4 in my passport for a year, which will allow me to work in Ireland without a permit!

This is extremely welcome news since, given what happened last time (see here and here), renewing the Green Card permit was probably going to be a bear. Plus, this way I'm not tied to a specific job, nor am I prevented from taking a 2nd job/private practice if I ever felt like I needed more to do :-)

Green Card permit: 1,000 euro
Stamp 4 in my passport: 150 euro
Regaining some control over my life: Priceless

Monday, January 26, 2009

A Red Letter Day

I actually met someone named "Paddy" today! How cool is that?!

An interesting cultural moment actually, since he and his family were sitting across from a Jamaican-American (that's me, in case you didn't know) and a Nigerian psychiatric resident doctor ("registrar") whose full name nobody can pronounce :-)

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Still Quite American

Random evidence from today that I have not yet completely acclimated to the Emerald Isle:
  1. Have had the "Where are you from?" conversation several times today in response to being outed by my accent. From the guy at the food stall at Mahon Point's Thursday Farmer's Market, to the letting agent showing me available apartments (I'm getting tired of of the one I'm in), to 2 friends of friends at the pub tonight. They all have lived in or visited extensively in the States, but none of them could accurately locate North Carolina geographically.
  2. Had another "what the heck is he saying?" moment in response to the pizza delivery guy's strong Cork accent. It still gets me sometimes. But I love hearing "You're a star" added on to the "thanks" at the end of sentences :-)
  3. When my friend texted asking me to meet up with her and her partner* at the bar/restaurant down the road for some "scoops", my first reaction was "I didn't know Barry's served ice cream?!" It literally took me 5 minutes to figure out/vaguely remember that "scoops" is slang for drinks. And, yes, I did end up googling it to verify :-)
* For you Americans: no, "partner" doesn't mean she's gay. It's the generic word here for serious, long-term relationship, legally binding or not.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

New Favorite Movie Moment

The Lake House (Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves) - that moment at the end when they're walking toward each other and they finally meet in the same frame and Sandra says "You waited..."

I love SB, though I usually think of her as a comedic rather than a romantic heroine. And I would usually laugh at the idea of KR as anything close to a romantic hero. But, it works here. He works here. His stiffness and lack of chemistry isn't so much of a factor in this storyline since so much of it is told from their individual perspective and voices, and the medium of letters itself requires a certain amount of distance and looking inward.

The movie's logic/timeline is a little befuddling, but that ending? A sweet and wonderful moment.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

I Hate To Say It...

... but I loved it! The name evokes cult, B-movie patheticness. "Snakes On A Plane". Really? It's like it was designed to be a joke from the start.

But, the sad thing is? It's AMAZING! Good acting by some excellent actors (Samuel L. Jackson and Julianna Margulies) and hysterically funny, even when icky snakes are attacking perfectly innocent movie stereotypes in the grossest and most unlikely ways possible.

I HATE scary movies. I hate gross movies. I hate movies with dead people and unnecessary violence. But it's done so well that I had to laugh. So un-PC. But damn good nonetheless!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Jamaican Food

A wonderful piece on Jamaica's cultural and multicultural history as told through the story of its food. Very nicely done!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

How Amazing Is My Sister?

So, it's the day after I arrive in Miami for the Christmas holiday and my sister has graciously brought me, not just to the hair salon to get my relaxer touched up, but also trekked with me through the shopping mall as I went crazy with all the 50% off sales in my favorite shops.

After driving me to The Falls, for a second round of shopping, we finish our little argument about what to get for lunch and start toward the crepes place at the food court.

I'll boast and say that I was the one who first heard the cries for a doctor and that I did not freak out at all when I found myself holding the woman having the seizure while she jerked and vomited and overall had a very bad day.

But, my little sister was the one who immediately went into medical/work mode (she's a Physician Assistant in an ER), assessing, monitoring and reassuring the poor woman until the EMT's arrived. I have to admit that lil sis was slightly scary in the midst of her impressiveness :-) Clearly this is not a woman to be messed with! She's used to being in control of the situation and does not tolerate unnecessary intrusions or silly/stupid questions when she's doing her job. For goodness sakes onlookers, no yelling multiple questions from the numerous 911 operators you have on your cellphones, and no pseudo-medical advice shouted her way, otherwise you're going to get your heads bitten off! :-)

Once the paramedics got there and she gave her report (just like on ER!) and handed the poor lady off, we just walked off like nothing had happened and went to get our crepes.

Slightly surreal but little sister done good!