Monday, February 26, 2007

A tick, a giraffe, and a soaker

We had a totally hilarious time after work for a few minutes last night. One of the women who works there as a language teacher is also the daughter of the woman who took us up to get Chuck. It is a small town here. Anyway, the Chuckster had picked up a tick. I had removed it, we don't have one of those tick flicker do-hickeys they sell at all the camping stores, and I know you have to be super careful doing this, but it wasn't well embedded, and I grabbed it very close to the top with a pair of tweezers and ping, out it came. Then a big blood, so it may have still been trying to work it's way through his coat.

I wanted to ask my co-worker, of the dog loving Mom if ticks carry disease here like they do in North America, so as we are all five of us standing outside the school, four of them speak excellent English...I asked her about it. One of the women told me, as I know, that you shouldn't just pluck them out as they can leave parts of themselves behind and cause a.....well, this left them stymied. I knew it could cause an infection, but what were thy driving at? She came up with a tumor. I wasn't sure than my rash tweezer action was going to lead to tumours, but....they went around it in Catalan and then Castillian, and then got out the dictionary....while they continued to guess. A blemish? No I didn't think so, that's a zit...a good tumour? (are there good tumours. I know they can be benign, but good?) Finally they found the word after laughing that they were ALL going to go home and look it up, a 'kist' they said...I corrected them to a cyst, and we all laughed fairly hard at the tumour idea....ticks may be a bit of a problem, but that is a bit much.

Well, maybe you had to be there.

One of my students works in banking and is mostly concerned with language around mortgages. Good thing I have one, as this isn't a topic I cover all that often. She had me scratching my head and waiting around as my internal filing system came up with the word I was looking for. The difficulty was that we were working from a document that she had brought me from her workplace which was written in quite poor English, and they didn't use some of the words correctly, for instance they were using down-payment and deposit interchangeably, and they ain't the same honey. Then she was trying to tell me about some of the unique facets of Spanish banking and money lending and I had to try and guess what she means. Her English is good, but not brilliant, and she gets confusing sometimes. Brain gymnastics, I can almost feel it straining and stretching to keep up. One of my other students is a sculptor, and that is another whole new world of words that I had never even heard before. Thank god for the internet.

A continuation of the glue-pill story from a day or two ago. One of my rotten daughters had said to the other that her grandfather was taking pills because he was old, and they were to glue him together. Well, I have heard via the wonders of e-mail that apparently revenge is being formed. He plans on haunting her for the rest of her days as a big fat payback. She doesn't seem overly concerned I must admit.

Went out walking with the dog today, and I have discovered one of the big unadvertised advantages of the dog---I can stand and gape up the driveways of the more interesting houses around rather than doing the polite glance and keep walking. "Look Chuck, doesn't that smell interesting?" Then I can just sort of stand long as I think I can politely manage, which is pretty long if ANY sort of animal has gone by recently. I found a life-size statue of a giraffe today, and a big old beautiful house that I had never seen before. Wow. This isn't that big a town, but it certainly isn't laid out on a grid, so there is plenty discover. Five months later I am still finding new little streets, and I have several longer walks on my mental to do list.

Today is registration day for the George Town cruisers regatta, hope they have good weather for it. One year we were there a front came through and it was blowing so hard that getting in involved involuntary intermittent full body immersion and considerable time and effort. And that was with a motor on your dingy. I rowed it in. Shoulda seen my pipes then. My arms are turning back to twiggy sticks again now that I am dwelling in the ease of land-life. Don't even ring out my laundry anymore. Can't say I miss doing that though.


Nomad said...

Yes Lyme disease, indirect personal experience...*shudder*
VERY funny re the Glue story...
yes delightful exploring old obscure places.

Beth said...

Yup, walking a dog certainly has its benefits - you meet people, get exercise yourself and, yes, can stare at other peoples' homes. I've done it!
Re: your question as to my youngest being bilingual. Our local public school offers French Immersion starting in Senior Kindergarten. All but two of the children in his JK class were going into French Immersion - so that's where we put him! He thrived. When we'd considered it for our eldest, the teacher (diplomatically) changed our minds. He was a bit of a rascal back then (still is) and she told us he lacked the attentiveness required. C'est la vie! (He thrived in the English stream as did son # 2.)

oreneta said...

Nomad: Ooohh, I don't know anyone who actually contracted Lyme's disease, lets hope I never do.

Beth: Yeah, the nosiness factor is an unexpected bonus...