Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Upside of IREland

There was just a little cinematic reference for you in the title, a little play on words, if you will. 20 bucks to whoever gets it first. (hint: Kevin Costner)

See, I can offer $20 bucks to you because I'm here in Ireland and $20 is only like 15 euro so, HA! bargain city... oh, wait..

But this post is about the good things in Ireland. It has come to my attention that I sometimes hit a sour note when singing the praise of differences between here and home. ex-home. Land of the pilgrim's pride. From every mountainside....

For starters, I got on the scale this morning and I only weigh 9.6 stone. That's a true measurement and "although no longer an official unit of measure, the stone remains widely used within the British Isles as a means of expressing human body weight. ... " (thanks, Wiki).
So, okay 9.6 stone (is the 0.6 referred to as pebbles you may ask, and officially I don't know - but in my mind it does..)
9.6 stone = 61.5 kg
And the rest is obvious. C'mon 5T..don't disappoint me now, kg-lb conversion. I'm lobbing an easy one at you..
61.5 kg = 134.6 lbs!
Sounds better at 9.6 stone, right? I know. And I think it is quite bold of me to announce my weight on the internet too, but this is the thinnest I've been in a while. Definitely since Katie. I just don't understand why my friggin jeans are still so damn tight.
Granted, the weight loss could stem from all the quality time I've spent admiring the plumbing fixtures over the last week, but it could also come from all the walking Katie and I have done.

Segway to good thing #2. Irish Weather! No. really. believe it or not, the last few weeks, really since we got here have been beautiful. Warmish, sunny, birds-singing kind of pleasant. So we get out and enjoy it as much as we can. Its so much like Miami winter! (disclaimer - today is shit. Im sure its just a fluke.) The other day I was cooking something in the oven and it warmed up the kitchen so I just opened the french door toward the backyard and let the cool breeze come in. I was sitting on the floor taking silly pictures of Kate and thinking, This is the life!

Good thing #3. Ireland and all of Europe really are very green. They've been green longer than green was the color to be. Recycling is a given. In fact, you pay for your trash can (rubbish bin) and recycle bin here (which I guess through taxes its true in the states too) but, you choose the size you want and they will only take what fits in. And pick up is only once every OTHER week. So, you learn to Reduce unless you like the smell of stinky diapers. Then in the stores, everyone uses the "green bags". Its not a hippy, granola thing, its just what you do. If you need a plastic bag, you have to pay for it. So there is your Reuse. But, there's more:

This is our "flush button". A slightly more sanitary take on the old favorite, "if it's yellow let it mellow, if it's brown flush it down", you can press just the round button quick rinse or both for when you really mean business (or more accurately, have finished your business)
And this is our electric emersion.

This enables us to take a hot shower by only heating the water we are going to use, not fill a whole hot water tank. And does it work? You betcha. If Paris Hilton were showering in our house, she would say, "That's hot!".
And finally, this is our outlet.

You have to switch on the power with the button so you aren't sending electricity all over where it isn't needed.
And another thing and who knows if it's more energy efficient, its just plain weird in a cool way is our clothes dryer (though I havent been using it much as the weather has been so fine) sucks OUT the water in our clothes. For real, I have to empty out a tank of collected water after each load. freaking brilliant.
I think that is enough "good things" for today. I don't want all of you to get super jealous and start to hate me. Or worse, threaten to come over and stay for a while. I already have my cousin coming to stay with us and help herself to all the irish goodies. (I'm just kidding Lar, I am SOOO looking forward to your visit. I can't wait to have you here!) And I'm tired of going around the house taking pictures of strange things. I'm starting to think of myself as a weirdo. (no comments from the peanut gallery please)

I think now I'll just sit back and relax. It's amazing how much free time I have now that I've got someone to do my chores...


Mom said...

In the US, those kind of machines are called "extractors". We used to go to a laundromat that had an extractor. We used that first, then loaded the dryer. It took out a lot of the water and saved on the drying time. Have you heard that if you keep something long enough, it comes back into fashion???

Kristy Hajimihalis said...

Well this was very informative! (And congrats on being a skinny minny!!)

Orflaith said...

Your weight is 9 stone 6 pounds. There are 14 pounds in a stone and 16 oz in a pound(important for making those cakes if you use the imperial system. I am still not used to the metric system for baking. Enjoy the blog, I look forward to it every day and I only live 10 miles away.

Debbie said...

LOL...wonderful, and VERY informative. I'm so glad you're having a good time over there. Can't wait to come visit :-) :-) :-)