It is October 19. Summer is well over. In fact, November is less than two weeks away. Almost as soon as we got back to Halifax after our travels across North America, I started school. I studied Radio at University.That course started earlier than the regular term, and ended a couple of weeks ago. I came away from it having recorded my first radio news story, a minute and 13 seconds long. It wasn't bad.
Paul and the dogs and I moved out of our co-op house in the North end of the city, and into a flat in Spryfield, which is a good long bus ride outside of town. Spryfield is as poor an area as the North End is, but sans the art-school kids and struggling musicians. It is just poor, as opposed to being poor and hip. But here, we can walk half a kilometre to the West or to the East and we are walking through woods. When a dog escapes, we're chasing him through underbrush and fallen leaves, and not through a cementery and chain-link fences. Its quieter, but we did have a unshot the other night. We have had two black-outs, lasting hours. The bus shelter has a smashed roof. The library is bigger and has a communiy centre attached to it. The grocery store is just as far away, but doesn't have a liquor store next door. The only thing I really hate is the long bus ride into school... during rush hour, the traffic jams can make it last an hour and half. But the house itself is nice, I like not having to climb a flight of stairs to go to the bathroom. But we wont be here long. I couldn't sleep last night, trying to think of ways to be in Ecuador during the month of January. I get an extra long school break this winter, because I'm taking my second term at a Mexican University. Their school year doesn't start until the first week of February. My parents are talking about being in town over Christmas, but after that: I want to take off. Be in Guayaquil for New Years. Do a four week unpaid journalism internship at Ecuavisa, channel 2. Go home, for a change, instead of just going more and more places. Go home in between going more and more places. Mexico: I'll be living in Colima, the capital of the province of the same name. In my studies of the Mexican Revolution, Colima had no part to play. It's just a tiny province tucked in between the big ones that raised revolutionary armies, agrarian reformists, skanky politics. It's on the west coast, and the city is an hour away from the Pacific Ocean, so it is a similar location to what I have know, but the city itself is tiny. Probably even smaller than Halifax, from what I hear. I'll be studying one journalism course, while I'm there, and three electives, none of which I have picked. I'll also be expected to create a feature story (either online, radio, audio or multimedia) about a topic related to water. I'm thinking about collecting people's stories and memories about El Niño phenomenons through the years, but I don't know yet whether that region is affected by the current. I don't really have any hard-hitting investigative ideas. Maybe one will come to me when I am there. I'll also be doing another writing course, via distance, with my professor Stephen Kimber. Creative Non-fiction. If I am in Ecuador in the period between school terms, I might do research while I'm there for stuff to write while in Mexico. I have a Jack Russel terrier that might be keeping me company on the trip to Mexico. Paul says he will come a few months after I go, maybe in March or April. He wants to record an album and finish up his Masters courses first. He wants to do so in complete isolation, in a cabin on an island or something equally as remote. Muddy will stay with him. And I've gotten this far without mentioning the Gazette! That's amazing. I am the news editor at the student newspaper of Dalhousie University. We are a wicked paper this year, check us out: www.dalgazette.com