Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Books, books, and (hopefully) more books

One of my goals this year is to read more.

In order to help me reach this very specific goal of "more," I'm going to keep a list of all the books that I've finished recently, along with a quick comment stating "Yay!" or "Eh!"

Do you have any suggestions for me?


The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty - LOVED IT!
Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell - So sweet. So innocent. Great YA read!
Paper Town by John Green - Not one of my favorites, but I love John Green.
Where'd You Go, Bernadette? by Maria Semple - Hilarious. A bit crass and a bit long towards the end, but laugh out loud funny!
Northanger Abbey and Mansfield Park by Jane Austen - They are no P&P or S&S, but I can't believe I hadn't read them.
Looking for Alaska by John Green - Much better than Paper Town; I think I'd like to teach it to high school kids - but parents would probably freak out.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Appendix No More

I had my appendix removed, Abu Dhabi-style, on Thursday. 

And while I wish this was a result of the surgery...

...the only true result I'm feeling is less pain where my appendix used to be. But, I'm at home, slowly recovering (who knew three little holes through your abdomen could raise such a painful ruckus?) and enjoying my week off from school.

The Full Story:
After three days of lower right stomach pain, I finally went to the ER at 7pm on Tuesday night. After an ultra-sound, two CT scans, and three different doctors' consultations, they decided that yes, my appendix was inflamed, but no, they wouldn't admit me to the hospital because I hadn't vomited and didn't have a fever.  Finally at 5am, they sent me home, with directions to call the hospital at 8am to schedule a surgery consult.

We went home, slept, then called and made an appointment for 2pm on Wednesday. The surgeon took one look at my abdomen, pressed down on my appendix, and said, "No doubt. Surgery. Not today. Tomorrow." 

And that was that. I got to sleep in my bed that night and had surgery Thursday morning at 7:30am.

My surgeon was fabulous: straight to the point, methodical, yet caring. The nurses were attentive and seemed to genuinely care about me.

The only hiccup throughout the day was when it came time to discharge. The surgeon had visited me at 4:30pm and said I could go home: discharge papers were complete and I was just to let the nurses know when I was ready. So, I took one more nap, ate some pretty decent hospital food, and then informed the nurses that I was ready to go home. 

The nurses then informed us that another doctor would have to come and discharge me and she wouldn't be available until after 9pm. At 10:45pm, we were finally allowed to leave the hospital after a doctor, that didn't do anything more than walk in the room, smile at me, and say, "Good?", said we could. 

So we got home a little later than we had hoped on the first day, but Rob had the weekend to recover before going back to school and I had the whole week off to recover (and I'm still dreading going back on Sunday, isn't that sad?).

Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers! 

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Abu Dhabi FYI

1. If you don't like the answer, ask someone else. If it doesn't feel right, if you have that feeling of, "Wait...what do you mean..."ask someone else.

There are a lot of factors for this one: labor is poorly paid, the language barrier, people don't seek out confrontation, and things aren't communicated well. All that being said, if you don't like the answer, ask someone else. 

First Example:
The first drug store I went to, I asked for ibuprofen. I was told, "No have" by a guy in a white lab coat. After a few months, our supply of ibuprofen from home ran out. Rob went to the pharmacy and asked for, "Ibuprofen? Advil?" and was handed a bottle of 100 tablets of 200mg of Advil. 

Second Example: 
When we purchased our prepaid cell phone plans (much cheaper than postpaid), we were told we needed to come into a store every month to reload our accounts. The last time we went in, the cell phone guy said, "You know you can pay this from your phone, right?" Before Rob's brain exploded (this stuff is rough on him), I said very calmly, "We've been in every month since October and this is the first time we've been given this information." Turns out, the cell phone guy was actually the manager, aka the one person at the branch not working on commission. So, it didn't benefit him for us to come in every month, so he told us we didn't have to. That's all it took.

2. Men will talk to other men. This one was hard for me. I pay the bills. I manage our accounts back home. I need to know how things work on the UAE end, and still, I need to have Rob sitting next to me, sometimes re-asking the question I just asked, to get a straight answer.

3. Everything takes 2-3 times as long as you think it will: visits to the bank, grocery shopping, paying a bill, searching for a specific clothing item, etc. 

4. No one is looking out for you besides you. Whether it's figuring out how to pay your bills or how to drive on the freeway, no one is looking out for you, but you. Double check to make sure you understand how to pay your bills online and double, no triple check, your blind spot.

5. When you find something you like at the grocery store, buy seven at a time. Shelves are not consistently stocked with the same items, so when you find it, buy it in bulk.

Saturday, April 26, 2014

HIMYM - Finale

****The below rant includes spoilers.****

I've spent the last however many years (not actually that many, thanks NETFLIX) anticipating meeting Ted's wife and finally, finally hearing the elusive words, "And kids, that's how I met your mother."

And the meeting under the yellow umbrella was cute, their first date was awkward and precious, and then BOOM, "She dies." And he ENDS UP CHASING ROBIN ALL OVER AGAIN! Are you kidding me?

My head was okay with the Barney and Robin split, that seemed almost inevitable. But in my heart, deep down, I wanted the wedding to actually never happen and for them to just be happy, being together...for as long as they both shall live (or at least until the end of the show).

It's true that friends come and go, that life is messy, that everyone doesn't always get a "happily ever after" their first try, so in that way, kuddos to the writers for trying to be real. 

But I was watching HIMYM for the cuteness, the lovey-doveness, and the fairy tale. And I was sorely disappointed. 

Thank goodness for Netflix, where (eventually, when I get over being mad), I'll be able to re-watch my favorite episodes like "Slapbet" and "Ducky Tie" and just pretend that the one weekend season 9 never happened.