Thursday, August 30, 2007

12 days later..

  • There is still roof missing over my kitchen.
  • Daily I am amazed at the amount of gallons of water my large buckets capture when I am at work.
  • The Landlady sent a roof guy who came by himself with no ladder and no crew who only looked at the roof from the ground and saw exactly this. He promised to come back the following day while I was at work and fix it from the outside but alas it has been two days and everyday I come home to full buckets in my kitchen. I could have emailed him the picture and it would have saved him a trip.. at least I enjoyed that day when I worked from home.
11 days later election coverage still takes up 95% of the local news and I am tired of it. It could be something as insignificant as a cow missing and then it will turn it into a political issue with both sides accusing each other. Was there no other news before this whole mess? I wasn't planning on going to work on election day, next week Monday... hopefully things won't be too bloody.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Picking up the pieces

I decided that my apartment, the ghetto penthouse(zinc roof and all), is the tallest structure on my lot was not the place to be with a Category 4 hurricane predicted to directly hit Jamaica. By Saturday night I had moved, wrapped, covered and secured all my worldly possessions I deemed not water resistant and was ready to leave for somewhere more secure(concrete roof).
Noodle and I left early Sunday morning in the rain for her house where I sheltered from the storm. Apart from a big branch hitting and denting my car along with some water coming in through some of her windows we weathered the storm unscaved.

We awoke early Monday morning and went outside to see the damage done. There was an empty lot behind us that had about 8 tall trees, needless to say 0 remain, you can see piece of one of those trees on her neighbours house above, they all snapped like twigs. I didn't hang around long as I was curious as to the damage done to my property. I saw one of my neighbours outside and he said nothing much went on, so after chatting with him a bit I thought I was in the clear. I went upstairs to my place and took a tour, the only things I noticed was some water splashed in through the windows on the eastern side and pieces of ceiling on the tarpaulin I used to cover my bed.

While walking around my place trying to put things back in place I realized I haven't seen the kitchen yet. While preparing for the storm I realized the kitchen(made of board walls and a very sketchy roof) was the weakest link so I closed up everything tight, locked the kitchen door and barricaded it with the pool table. After pulling back the pool table and opening the door I saw sunlight. Keeping in mind the windows were all locked and the place should be dark I knew all was not well and my eye panned down from the hole in the ceiling exposing the sky to the dirty/flooded kitchen below.

I mopped the floor and started cleaning up with my limited water, only to have rain fall an hour later to soak the kitchen all over again. It's a good thing the kitchen is the step-child room of my apartment and it would take over a foot of water before it starts affecting anywhere else in my place. I called the landlady but she didn't seem like she would be in any rush to fix anything, so I moved on and hung out with noodle for the rest of the day.

When I got home later that day I started using as much of the perishable items in the fridge and freezer so they wouldn't go to waste as pictured here me enjoying(kingston 62?? not really) a brewskie by candle light lol. I started trying the clear the food I had in my fridge/freezer since last week Tuesday but it was a job too large for my pot belly. When I reached home yesterday and light still wasn't back yet I took my thermometer to the freezer and it clocked in at 60F so I filled a garbage bag with the x-denizens of my freezer, it broke my heart but the food needed to go. I made my self a sandwich from some of my hurricane tin food and fell asleep around 6pm. When I woke up around 8pm later that night power was back... yay!

I plugged back in everything and tried to watch the news, it had been so many days since I've seen whats going on in Jamaica since I had no tv or radio with this power outage. Of course there was no cable and no signal, I had to go dig up for an antenna so I could receive the local over the air stations. I turned on my desktop pc and tried to go online but the DSL modem wasn't having it. Luckily for me when I came home today there was cable tv and DSL service again, things are coming back to normal. The only thing outstanding is the roof and that's in my landlady's hands.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Bon voyage sun

The past couple of days have been rather wet here in Kingston and I am loving the rather cool weather the torrential rains have brought with it. I had plans to go to the north coast this weekend but of course that had to be scratched due to the inclement weather at hand.

All this rain has also highlighted the fact that water leaks in the trunk of my car. Water also drips from the roof in my kitchen but I have long accepted this problem will not go away due to the laziness of my landlady and I have just have a bucket under the leak all year round. Leaky roofs doesn't seem to bother me much as it would leak over my bed occasionally at my parents house. I would be sleeping and be awoken at 1am in the morning by some cold water dripping on my shoulder and would have to go for a container to catch the water them move over to the other side of the bed.

Aside from the rain flooding my trunk, turning the roads into a long parking lot in the evenings and squashing my North coast plans I spent a lot of cozy quality time with noodle at home. The artist Busy Signal also passed through the canteen one day for a signing session. I like some of his songs but I'm not really a fan of him as he beat up(wickedly) one of my friends who was one of the sweetest most harmless girl I knew. If you look at the pictures you might notice his knuckles are bruised.. I guess he gets into a lot of fights, one day he will get whats coming to him :p. Last week Beanie man also passed through too, my camera was in the car though so there were no Kodak moments captured by me then.

My father's birthday was last week as well so today we went out to lunch at the Terra Nova as usual to celebrate. I am usually rather tired of there food now but today their supposedly 80 item buffet was extra delicious. If I knew lunch was going to be that good I would have skipped out on the eggs, jerked sausage, bacon and hashed browns I had for breakfast this morning(thanks frozen food isle). Lets hope the food doesn't haunt me like the last time I went out with my father to lunch at Dragon Court(where I spotted a roach) three weeks ago which gave me the runs for the next few days. They claimed the food was that much more tastier and left with big smiles since it was my turn to treat and I footed the bill. I've had my eye on Ambrosia recently maybe we can go there next but it's so hard to leave the tested and proven Terra Nova.

One topic at lunch brought up by my sister was my apparently my ability to properly budget and manage money. Apparently she says she is getting old(late late 20's :p) and needs to settle down with this aspect of her life. She wanted a copy of my GnuCash to run on her mac laptop.. and she wonders why she has no money. Anyway GnuCash and its double entry book keeping system isnt for everyone so to spare her that pain and my pain of getting it installed on her OSX I recommended that she use one of the many free money management sites out there. Coincidentally recently I was helping Noodle set up and track her budget so all the following links were fresh in my browser.

  • Buxfer - Good for keeping track of budgets and shared expenses such as shared rent/utility bills among room mates.
  • ClearCheckbook - Haven't used it yet but it looks good from the tour.
  • Expensr - also looks promising from the tour.
Also for y'all windows users I guess there is Quicken and MS Money if your willing to spend some cash on them. I also think the with the latest release of GnuCash they have ported it to windows.. I can't vouch for that one but I can say the unix branch is a stable solid piece of software.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Castleton.. finally.

So my first taste of freedom began on Monday morning at 8am after I came off my three weeks of standby work. It was the Independence weekend so all the young people (- me) found themselves at Negril as usual. A bunch of us decided to go to Castleton(finally after hearing so many people talking about it recently) after a Portland trip fell through.

We got there a little before noon and there were a few people there but slowly but surely people started to crowd the place as the day went on. The rocks were big and the water was low but enough for the kids to splash in and me to drown in

An interesting tidbit was that in the party of people that we(noodle[wifey] & I) went with was noodle's x-bf who seemingly still likes her. She advised to keep my distance so as to not cause any unnecessary jealousy, brilliant! push away the current to please the x. To mix things up even more, upon arrival a guy by the river called her over and she went over without saying a word. Feeling like chopped liver I stood for a minute looking at her waiting for her to look back for me or even(God forbid) call me over to introduce me to her friend but there was nothing. Eventually when she finished talking to him and I existed again I asked her who the mystery guy was:
me- who was that?
noodle- XXX
me- XXX who? (she knows many XXXs)
noodle- I'll tell you later
me- XXX your x-bf?
noodle- I'll tell you later(then she gets upsets and walks away)

I waited 5+ hours until we were in the car alone driving back to town to ask her again to hear what the big secret was. She then confirms "yes XXX my x-bf". Maybe I am slow but I am still lost as to why this information couldn't be shared before if there was the slightest possibility of somebody else hearing or why I was hidden away from him like a leper..

I just wrote it off to girl problems and moved on as you can see noodle and I throwing balls at each other. One final note, its not my baby.