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Moving forward and looking back
saxifrage flower
Just finished my first day of classes for the term. The TA never showed for my 9:30am tutorial despite the explicit message at the Linguistics Department web page that tutorials would be held the first week of courses. I made out better than some of the other students, though, some of whom had no other reason to be up the hill that day.

I think I’m going to like my Intro to Cognitive Science and my Natural Deductive Logic classes. The former is being taught by a graduate student who’s taking her first crack at being a professor and talks rather quickly, and the latter is taught by an avuncular old professor who’s very casual and not in any undue rush to get anywhere and assures us that we’ll get to the fun of playing with logic soon enough. Looking for a PowerPoint slideshow to flip through to burn off the last five minutes of class, one of the students saw “HOW TO BATHE THE CAT.ps” in the list and asked about it—so he showed it to finish off the class. It was something his niece sent him and involved shampoo and a flush toilet, and was signed “Sincerely, the Dog.” I’m going to like that class.

On my way home I missed my bus stop, so I naturally bought a CD before catching the bus going back the other way. I brought home Johnny Cash’s America IV: The Man Comes Around and the Mystery Science Theater 3000, Vol. 4 DVD. Yay.

And now, a meme from eva00:

1.Go To Mapquest.com

2.Click on Directions

4. Enter your Current Address and the Address of your Childhood Home (or at least the town and street if you don’t remember the exact address)

4.Put the time and distance in a post like this.

Total Est. Time: 40 hours, 30 minutes
Total Est. Distance: 4296.23 kilometers (I converted it to kilometers because, well, those “mile” things aren’t very meaningful to me.)

(The odd thing about that number is that the route mapquest gave me to get from here to Ontario went through the US, for some strange reason. There must be a preference for US highways in the algorithm, since we’ve got a very fine Trans-Canada Highway to use so that we don’t need to go south to the land of the jingoists.)

There is a voice in the back of my head desperately screaming, “Roadtrip! Rooaadtriiiip!!” darthmaus, when you’re in Guelph, could you swing by my old house and take some cameraphone pictures if I gave you a map? It’s been a long time since I’ve seen it.

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As a person who has driven cross continent, it's way faster and more convenient to take the interstates.

Really? Why is that?

(I'd still rather keep my precious butt out of their Media-fearing, rights-thumping country if I can help it.)

Interstates are really wide, really straight, and have very high speed limits.

And they have the truck stops of the gods.

I'm sorry, but when I'm in the middle of an oddessey to get to pennsylvania in 48 hours, I want those truck stops badly. Gas station, showers, a place to put up your feet and watch a movie for free for a bit rather than stare at the road, and usually not only one or two fast food joints but also a restaurant if you have a minute or two to sit.

Those things are like an oasis in the desert. You start to get darn grumpy if you need to stop for gas at a regular gas station.

Ah. Good point. I'd always heard about the huge highway system, but I didn't realise the infrastructure was so much better.

Looking at the map of the directions that mapquest gave me, I notice too that going via the interstates has the advantage of missing northern Ontario, always a good thing.

What eva00 said -- she's right.

Give me a map/address; if I get the chance I will do so. I think I'd be amused by that :)

Right-o, then.

I can show you the map and describe the house, but I can't remember the exact house number. I'll see if I can work on that before you leave.

Mapquest map to my old house
(It's actually in the oval north of the star, but that should be fixed once I find the proper house number.)

Damn, I just looked up the distance between Guelph and that address, and I misremembered how close they were. I suppose it depends on where in Guelph you'll be staying and working whether it would still work...

1 hour, 8 minutes, 98.19 kilometers, boring, huh?

But it told me the shortest way, changing the highway once. You go on the highway 57 straight and stay there but my dad found out that this will cost you 15 minutes or so.

Well, I interpreted "childhood home" liberally. If I chose the house I was born in or the first house I remember, the numbers get a lot more boring. :-)

The house I was born in is only about a fifteen minute drive from my apartment, if that. The first house I remember is about an hour away, give or take a bit depending on traffic. The house I picked is on the other side of the continent, and I picked it because it's far away and the house where I spent the largest fraction of my childhood.

Well, if I would pick the adress of the hospital where I was born and the monastery where I spent the first part of my childhood, namely nine months, numbers would shoot through the roof. But "South America" can't be selected on mapquest ;)

We never moved since my parents got me (they come from a different part of Germany and settled in my hometown only after getting their teacher jobs), so the first house I remember and the house where I spent my whole childhood and adolescence is the same.

So you moved back to the city you were born in - coincidence or planning?

A little of both, I think, but I'm not sure. I was still young when we moved back here. My dad was still living here, and my mom wanted to move back when events were such that we had to move. When she was younger, she had left the east coast to live in BC, so it was natural for her to move back that way given the opportunity.

I like it out here, but I'm glad for the experience from having lived in more places than most people have. It gives me just a little more perspective than I might otherwise have.

It gives me just a little more perspective than I might otherwise have.

That is so true. Talking to people who never have left my little hometown I feel like a globetrotter - and all I have done is gone to the next really big city( 30 000 inhabitants with all surrounding villages vs. 1 million). My parents, having moved away from home quite early themselves, have always supported me in this direction - go away , see different things, change perspective.

My childhood friends' parents are one of those who grew up there and never left since then, and it was a big issue for them that their daughter should ever leave the house. Now, I live very close to my hometown, but she moved to the other side of the country. Her mother was devastated and actually complained about that to my mother and said something like "we should have influenced her choice like you and your husband did." My mother didn't know what upset her most: that she felt bad because she didn't have the urge to cry in her pillow every night because I left or that people thought my parents had forced me to stay close to home.

*Lesigh* Yeah.

I've always felt that parents who held their children too close do them a disservice. Not only do they have a harder time dealing with the larger world, but kids like that feel the need to push their parents as far away as possible so that they can finally live their own life.

It makes it harder for the parents, too, because they can tell how hard their kid is pulling away.

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