Thursday, September 28, 2006

Singing Trains

If you don't know where my apartment is, it's nearby to a large train junction. We hear the expected train horns, but this has never bothered me, as I grew up near enough to a track to be used to hearing the low tones through my window (as well as the Lamar band and commentator at football games!). However, here there's another sound. It's a loud, high-pitched, ringing note. The best way I can describe it is as if someone had a huge wine glass and they were running their finger around the rim, but a bit more screechy. It resonates all around, but I'm pretty sure it comes from the trains. At first it used to drive me crazy, but I'm getting used to it now. Mostly I notice it when it gets really frequent.

I can only speculate, but I think it might be caused by shunting trains/cars with their brakes still on, or partially on, or shunting trains/cars on rusty tracks, or with very ungreased wheels. Anyway, I've come up with a name for it, subconciously. I call it 'the trains singing'. It certainly gives it a more interesting, exotic appeal.

Anyway, all last night and this morning, the trains have really been singing. Lots of different tones at once, and very loudly. And I've been listening.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Can You Say.... Mes Yeux?

Well, most of you have probably noticed that that big ol' picture at the top has magically disappeared. As have the ones linking to various webcomics in the right side-bar. I hope you don't like it, because it wasn't planned and isn't staying this way. I stored those images on my SU webspace, and apparently this week was when my email and webspace at SU ran out. So I'll have to upload them to 1&1. That reminds me, I think my webspace on 1&1 expires this year. Didn't that happen senior year and was valid for 3 years for free? God damn time flies. I'm surprised I even remember that. But, I have beend doing more business with 1&1. I don't know if I posted about it, but I'm now the proud owner of www.emmah* (non-link intentional) and www.h* (again, non-link intentional). The H*dcroft one was on request of my dad, who wanted to secure it, I guess against all those crazy H*dcrofts out there who want the URL so badly. www.h* (and www.h* is another guy, who just graduated med school in Wales. His uncle met my dad, and his uncle's dad met my dad's dad, both of those incidences occured seperately, with many years in-between. There's not many of us H*dcrofts out there, so we are very likely related somehow, but the record-keeping gets messy and we've yet to figure out how.

Whoo... that went off on a tangent. Anyway, expect the return of those pictures sometime when I'm not dead.

I can't really think of much interesting to write. I am not getting enough sleep. I am not doing enough HW. I have too many tests. I still don't have tv. I still have curtains to hang. Towels need washing. Ok, this is rapidly turning into a to-do list. Stopping that right now.

Maybe, if I'm lucky, the fumes of my Diels-Alder reaction in ochem lab today will have some sleeping effect, so I can nap away the hours without getting into trouble. Ohh, that would be nice.

Hm... Well, I can't think of much else to say. Guess I'll bugger off and leave all with a quote that I do like:
"Ve vere at de back! Near Svitzerland! All ve ever 'eard was yodelling!"

Monday, September 11, 2006

I Apologise in Advance

Hello everybody. Long time no chat, eh? Sorry about that. Everything has been so hectic and crazy. Going to try and post more often now that things have settled down some.

So! 9-11 once again, eh? Unfortunately I didn't have my blog back then, so I can't look back and see what I wrote 5 years ago today. Too bad, because that would be interesting. If my memory serves me right, I started my blog just before we declared war on Iraq, though I can't be bothered to look up a date for that. No posts about that, either, though. Hm. I should try more to post about current events, maybe, so I can look back and see my reactions of the past. Did I post on July 7th last year? Oh yes. I mentioned it briefly. I guess that I decided my posting was enough to confirm I was alive, though, despite getting lots of concern from people at the time.

Well anyway. I can't help it. It's the question of the day, isn't it? It's all over the papers, the internet, the forums. Where were you five years ago today? Well I know where I was. I was in a chemistry test! Yep. Sophomore chemistry with Mrs. Hill. Oh joy. I was probably failing badly. I remember looking at the clock and thinking 'shit' because I didn't have much time yet, but since it was a test and Mrs. Hill had isolated us from the world, we were all oblivious. Until we exited the class, of course, when the halls were abuzz with all these rumours. Until lunch time I was --- Whoa!
Ok. Backtrack. I'm wrong! My memory just flashed back! I was in dance class when I first heard about it, not chemistry. Then I went to chemistry. Since we didn't have a tv or computer (we used to practice on the stage) only our teacher, Mrs Woods could offer a little info, which was, if I remember right, that a plane crashed into a building. Or, at least, that's what came across in my head. I didn't think much of it at the time. I didn't know what the 'World Trade Center' was, being Emma, as usual, and didn't know it was in New York city. When people said 'plane' I was thinking biplane, crop duster, personal plane, little jet. So some trade building has a small-plane sized hole. Well, that's sad. Probably some people died. And on with the dancing.

In chemistry, now I have to wonder to myself, did Mrs. Hill know or not? I don't remember anybody saying anything, though people might have exchanged thoughts similar to mine... A complete underestimate of the situation. Nobody seemed worried. If Mrs Hill knew, I guess she didn't want to say anything so that she wouldn't have to reschedule the test. Man. I totally should have gone back and said that the trauma of the day made me do badly. Maybe I wouldn't have done so miserably in that class. Anyway, if anyone was in that sophomore chem class (I guess it started around 9?) and remembers if Mrs Hill said something, I'd like to know.

Man, now I'm really confused, because I was definitely a sophomore in Sept 2001, but I could swear I took dance as a freshman. My memory is crap. But I could swear Mrs. Woods told me about the plane. Oh well. If anyone knows my schedule from soph year, I'd love to hear from you.

Well, one thing I know for sure is that it was at lunch that I started getting worried, because that's when I met with my friends in Gym C (remember those old days??!) and they explained the real situation. That the planes (now there were 2) were big, and what the World Trade Center was. I remember Bryan and Cameron discussing the probability of DFW getting some kind of attack, and I remember Cameron saying that if there was an attack, he and his boy scout troop were going to volunteer to provide first-aid, which I immediately said I'd do, too. I remember feeling bad for a few days after that because though I didn't want DFW to be hit, the idea of doing some crazy-rescue first-aid was pretty exciting.

Next thing I remember was that in orchestra Mrs. Todd gave us permission to go home (I guess this came from a higher authority) if we wanted to and our parents were available to pick us up. I remember suddenly remembering that my dad was flying London to Brazil that day and getting worried, since I didn't know anything about these planes that'd run into the buildings. This was before I got a cell phone, so I got permission to use the phone in the orchestra office to call my mom, who assured me that they were AA planes on domestic flights, not BA on international. I think I remember Tina Sosa being very upset, but I don't know why, or if I fabricated that.

Anyway, that's my memories (and non-memories, and confusions) of 9-11 five years ago. I thought that some teacher made me write down about what I was doing at the time later on (you know, for therapy), but if I did, I don't know what happened to it, which is a shame, because now I'm curious about when I took dance. OH! I guess it was sophomore year. Ok. Well, that clears that up.

One thing that always comes to mind is a thought I had that day. I remember remembering that in 3rd grade we an assignment to go home and ask our parents and our grandparents what they were doing when John F Kennedy was assassinated. On Sept 11, 2001 I wondered if one day, if I was living in America, my kids would come home to ask me what I was doing when the planes hit the buildings and America went crazy. Well, I guess they'll get a jumbled mess of an answer, just like you got. ; )