10 August 2007

Back from China and a Basically Wasted Summer

Well, I seem to have neglected this thing for a while. And by while, I of course mean the entire summer.

To be fair about it, my life has been one big ball of chaos since the week of Le Nozze de Figaro. After playing a "brilliant" Barbarina (according to my Grandmother, but I assume she's biased), finals week kicked in with full force and made my life hell until May 5th. On the bright side, I escaped the semester with my life, some of my dignity, and a 3.8 GPA. Then came the highlight of my summer.... CHINA!!! WOOOOO!!!

Let me tell you, that was the most inspiring two weeks of my life. The things we saw!! Although the trip sort of turned into a "Make fun of me" marathon for being over excited about every historical thing we saw, but I didn't mind, because I got to see the Terracotta Soilders. And the Great Wall. And the Forbidden City. And the Summer Palace. And, and, and...

So that was amazing in every possible way, but then I got back to the United States...

The day before I had left for China, we had to put our 14 year old Blonde Lab, Pulcinella, to sleep. It was heartbreaking to face the fact that we actually had to do it, but it was time. She had lived a wonderful life that was upwards of three years longer than she had been expected to, and after 14 years of loyalty, we had to do what was best for her.

So while I was in China, it was killing my mother to not have a dog in the house, because Pulcie was her baby, and with me gone she had nothing to distract her. However, the rest of my family conveened and agreed that no new dog should be purchaced until I returned to the states. So, the second I touched down in our local airport, I was whisked off, without even so much the chance to drop my luggage off at home, to a local dog breeder. Two hours and $400 later, we returned home with this little trouble maker.
Her name is Rusalka, and she's certianly one of the sub-balls of chaos that have all been working together to form the huge ball of chaos that is my life. She was only 6 weeks old when we got her, and we were surprised the breeder was letting the puppies go that young, but we had to take her or else she's be gone when we went back. She had us fooled at the breeder though. I had held several of her siblings, and all were rambunctious and hyper, as labrador pups should be, and while my mom was holding and examining the black lab she wanted, I picked up this little sweetie, who was as playful as the rest. The second I did, she settled right in, burying her little puppy face in my neck, and proceeded to cuddle and fall asleep. Adorable. I demanded that my mom put down the other puppy and look, saying, "If you want that one, you'll have to get two of them, because I'm not letting go of this one." My mum agreed, on the condition that she got to name her.

However, the second we got that sweet little pup home, after cuddling into me and wagging her tail the whole ride home, she showed us her true colors. We walked in the door, and this little puppy, who's eyes are still blue and who is only about the length of my size 6 foot, proceeds to walk up to my hulkingly large orange tabby cat, tail wagging, all plesant and curious... and bites poor Genghis promptly in the nose.

We didn't see Genghis for four days. My boyfriend eventually located him while we were watching TV in the basement one night, when flecks from the drop ceiling panels appeared on his navy tee. Genghis was living in the drop ceiling.

So Rusalka, though she still can be sweet (when she's sleeping) is basically one huge ball of energy, tearing through the house at top speed, chasing the cats (Genghis has lost quite a bit of the weight he gained when I went to college), and chewing on our feet whenever presented with the chance. She is now just over 13 weeks, and twice the size she should be. We ran into two people in Petsmart the other day who also had their 13 week old lab puppies with them (one was actually Rusalka's littermate) and our girl was towering over them.

Okay, so we got the puppy. I go to turn on my computer so I can catch up with everything and load all my wonderful China pictures... and it's dead. The death of my computer lead to a three week long fiasco with Best Buy, in which I was told to buy a new computer because I did not have a service plan on mine, so it would cost too much to fix. So I did, and it didn't work. So after 4 more visits to Best Buy, and much harassment of the Geek Squad to get the new thing to work, we get a letter in the mail saying it was time to renew the service plan on my now old and busted machine. Again, to Best Buy, and harassing the Geek Squad because I was assured by the guy that I did not have a service plan. We raise hell until shifts change and we actually get a guy who knows what he's doing. So after two more weeks of frequent visits, refusing to talk to anyone but the guy who knows what he's doing, we get everything straightened out. My old computer is fixed for free, the new one is working. But it was a mess.

So then I started summer classes at the University by my house, and that complicated my puppy laiden life times a million. My last two classes just finally ended, and left me so burnt out and spent that I have done basically nothing but sit on the couch and watch CSI: Miami since I got home from my Spanish final Tuesday night. Even the dog got bored with me and left me alone.
Life has also been filled with preparations for the apartment, buying appliances and other such apartmenty things. Between my roomie and I, we have: a juicer, a Magic Bullet (tm), a George Foreman Grill, a rice cooker, a sandwich maker, a coffee machine, a jellybean machine (because every self-respecting apartment needs one of those!), a toaster, a small crockpot, and an egg poacher and omlette maker. We are going to be the most appliance laiden first time apartment renters EVER. Hell, we probably wont ever need the stove the way we're going.

Well, we'll be well fed.

Sadly, just as I finally have time to breathe and actually enjoy our adorable little back yard with my mom's flowers and our hammock, It's been raining non-stop since Tuesday, so I haven't been able to really enjoy it. I don't have much time left to, either, as I move into our apartment next weekend, and school starts the weekend after that, so it's back to rainy Pittsburgh after that, with its lack of cute little gardens and deck chairs.
-lc

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