I had put this whole post together, painstakingly I tell you - mostly photos summarizing February, for Leap Day because why wouldn't I post on Leap Day given that the next time it rolls around I could be in a world without blogs, having forever missed the opportunity to post on February 20-effing-9th. And after all this painstakingness, FUCKING (sorry. Only word that fits.) Firefox shut down and ate it. Firefox was all, "Suck it, mama. You're mama's so ugly in your town it's not Halloween, it's YourMamaWeen."
I heard that last week and I laughed for minutes. It's so dumb and yet so enjoyable.
Anyway, if I'd had tears in me at that point of the post explosion I would have cried. I did not, however.
I was blowing off all manner of academic and paid and "paid in clips" assignments to write the post, because February was such an incredibly hectic and photo-filled month in which I posted very little of consequence, as it turned out, and I wanted the pictures to tell the story, at least for my sake. I might try it again but it's a little late at this point.
So here I am. It's March 3. I leave for VIETNAM IN TEN DAYS, oh saints preserve us oh my LORD. I am so not even ready, but given that I've not been ready for even a trip out the door until it actually happens for my whole entire life, this really isn't that much of a newsflash. As much as it makes my life a daring adventure or nothing (or in my case a severely disturbed MadLib) it will not do on this trip. It's one thing when I'm heading across the county and forget my phone or my phone CHARGER or the particular battery for the particular camera that I need for whatever I'm headed out to do (this happens to me, without fail, because I am an idiot stick attention deficit moron. But otherwise I love me.) End up in Vietnam without my right camera battery or charger? I'd lay down in a rice paddy - they grow in the city proper in Hanoi, amazingly enough - and weep.
My story partner is a 19 year old guy who walked across Taiwan last summer and made a documentary about it, probably at the same time that I was prone on the beach sucking down Coronas and taking pictures of my toes. He's got the right amount of youthful idealism to balance me out, and we're getting along fine. Although when he suggested camping, as in "hey it'd be cool to camp on the road to HaLong Bay when we're out covering our story," I got a little peaked. I do not camp at home, just because I never have. I haven't ever. My family didn't and I never really hung out with people who did. I generally enjoy the experience of sleeping indoors, I have to say. I sleep out on the deck at the beach in the summer because the sound of waves, to me, is magic, but then I'm on a deck chair and not the ground.
When Jeff suggested it I was like, hmm. Camping. Vietnamese camping, in unknown territory. Um, okay. I guess if you're going to start, it doesn't really matter where, and now that I'm ripping open the super value meal of my life with my teeth I may as well take it to the wall. I was telling a friend this and she said, "'Camp' is a four-letter word in my world, sister." I guess we'll see how it all plays out.
We're assigned to the industrial corridor story, which will indeed have us heading out to Halong Bay, a beautiful place that's on the Gulf of Tonkin between Vietnam and China. I'll be able to pretend to see CHINA, people, and it'll actually be a body of water away. How cool is that? The bay is a United Nations World Heritage site that was apparently in the running when they redrafted the wonders of the world a couple of years back, although apparently it didn't win.
Anyway, the highway winds out of Hanoi to Halong Bay about three hours east, and our story covers what the industrial growth along this corridor is doing to the area, including the environment. We're going to drive out there the day or so after we get to Vietnam, and it turns out that you can spend the night on junks in the bay. Junks, like in the Little River Band song! And like in Lancelot Link!
My cultural immersion should go swimmingly. Please understand me when I say that I have no idea where I'm going. I have no earthly comprehension of it and I love that.
Posting may be weird again this month, but as I get myself together for this trip I'm going to try to get in the game with NaBloPoMo, mostly because I love the Lists theme for March and my brain could use a daily organization exercise. I've been making a lot of weird lists about music lately, so maybe I'll go with a theme within a theme? I don't know.
Oh, and about the design. Yeah. I had the new black one up, and I kind of liked it, until I talked to my friend Annett who actually reads this page on a regular basis and tells me nice and completely unwarranted things about the way I do go on about my LIFE and mySELF and blahblahblah. Annett is one of the greatest people I know and not just for that reason, I swear. It's because I swear I always laugh with her - as in always always. We make each other laugh. A lot of people do not make me laugh, at least not for the right reasons. When they do I follow them around until they get used to me and agree to be my friend. That's the deal here. So when I called Annett said, "Oh, hi, it's my GOTH FRIEND! I was going to call you and see what was wrong." She kids, she kids, but then when I said that I liked the embossed leaves at the top, she said, "Ghosts! They looked like ghosts!"
So you know, I went all perky with the butterflies, which I can stand because of those moody swirly things and a shade of warm red that makes me really happy. So there you go. Enjoy the warm fuzzy while it lasts. Soon I'll be back to my usual anger with a side of Diet Coke that makes me such a joy to be around.
I'm such a liar. ;)