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Iceland 2014

Did you miss me? Did you know I was gone?

Here are the photos of my magnificent time in Iceland.

There are also a few short videos: Heather Morrow – Take a Bite Productions.


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It is snowing in Edmonton, Alberta, today. 29 April, 2013. Temperature high of zero degrees Celcius. Which made me think of Bill Bryson.

If you’ve yet to read anything of Bill Bryson‘s, DO. He’s awesome.

The most recent book of his I’ve read is called A Short History of Nearly Everything. Among other fascinating things, he talks about the Tambora eruption in 1815. News travelled much more slowly then, but the entire world felt the effects eventually — it changed the weather. The average temperature the following summer — the growing season in the northern hemisphere — dropped by two degrees, which meant nothing would grow.

I genuinely don’t believe I’m being hysterical when I ponder if that’s why spring is taking so long to arrive. How many volcanic eruptions have there been the last few years? We can’t even agree on a plan to control the pollution we put into the atmosphere ourselves: what on earth will we do when an eruption like Krakatoa happens? How long would the growing season be delayed, and how many people would it effect?

Just thinking out loud…

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How I broke my hand and fell in love with Edinburgh

I’m taking a page from fellow blogger Andrea Beca’s virtual book—-I will be posting now and again about my adventurous four years in Scotland.

I lived in Edinburgh from November 2004 to February 2008. I was about to turn 30, and absolutely hated where my life was at, so I applied to film school, and for a UK Ancestry Visa. The visa is the one I got. I quit my job, gave away or sold all my stuff, and flew one-way to London in June of 2004. It amazes me now to remember I was THAT crazy.

Not completely crazy—I had the first two months there fully planned out before I left. I spent a week in London, took the train to Edinburgh, and after a week there I meant to visit some distant cousins (whom I’d never met!) in Belfast. On my third day in Edinburgh, I trudged up Arthur’s Seat, got caught in a rainstorm, and on trying to carefully pick my way down an extinct volcano of sheer granite, I slipped and did…something to my left hand. Understand that I had never broken a bone before in my life, and had no clue what it felt like. So when in just a few minutes I lost feeling in my hand and it swelled and, I thought: “You’re in a foreign country. BE a hypochondriac and find a hospital.” So I tracked down the double-decker bus and made my first of several visits to the Royal Edinburgh Infirmary, where they confirmed I had broken TWO metacarpals, the thin bones below my pinky and ring fingers. My visit to Belfast was pushed back, and I had a cast on my hand well into my Fringe job that August.

When I was told at the hospital that I wouldn’t be able to get on a plane to Northern Ireland until they had done a second X-ray, my reaction was kind of odd. (And yes, I was actually thinking about my own reaction at that moment, because it was so odd.) I was told I couldn’t leave Edinburgh, and I immediately thought: “Okay.” I had come to the UK with an Ancestry visa which would allow me to work there, but I by no means had a job lined up, or any plans at all, for after summer. But I had been in Edinburgh at that point for 10 days, and had already decided I never wanted to leave. My hand’s broken, my plans and job at a Fringe venue might have been screwed up, but I was “stuck” in Edinburgh, and I couldn’t have been happier.