Month: January 2013

  • Report # 967

    Well it looks like I’ve shifted into a bad pattern again this week of staying bed too late. I was out of bed today at 11:00 am exactly, but yesterday not until 11:40 am, and the other two days not until around noon. I am certain to break my pattern tomorrow though as I definitely will be out of bed before 10:00 am. I went for a run on Monday afternoon and then headed home and had a shower and went to Cinépolis in Galerias to see Hitchcock.

    It was an interesting movie for me as I really didn’t know much about Alfred Hitchcock the man, only being familiar with his name. Next up I suppose I will have to see some of his movies one day. After the movie I had some dinner in the food court, I giant chicken cutlet with mashed potatoes and gravy, corn, bread, and some spaghetti. I picked up two cupcakes which were loaded with icing to take home and of course after them and the large popcorn and coke before I was absolutely stuff. At least I finally had some vegetables, now just have to get some fruit !

    Monday and Tuesday were both very hot days, and Tuesday even got up to 32 C. (90 F) I went for a run on Tuesday afternoon and by the time I finished I was definitely sweating more than usual. I came home and had a shower and in the afternoon I headed out to the Marco (Museo de Arte Comptemporáneo de Monterrey) to check it out. There was a display on soccer as an art form and how it is connected around the world as the most popular sport, and it was very cool.

    Upstairs there was some very beautiful paintings and interesting pieces of art. If I had waited a day I wouldn’t have had to pay the 70 pesos (6 dollars and some) entrance fee as Wednesdays are free, but that’s ok. The only real downside to the trip was that I wasn’t allowed to take any photos, which I can understand as museums probably don’t want everyone who comes taking photos of everything and posting them all for everyone else to see, discouraging future visitors.

    I picked up a Frappuichino from El Globo and stopped at Subway and then headed home and had a relaxing evening. I ran again on Wednesday morning and it was much nicer as the day was about 10 degrees cooler, and at the hour I was running, it was probably even a little cooler than that. After my run I came home and had a shower and decided to order some food from a restaurant called Toks. I had seen a couple of them around town though I had never actually gone, but seeing as they had given all of the houses flyers, I thought I would call them and make an order from delivery.

    I made my order and after waiting for an hour my food had not arrived so I called back and the lady told me the address I gave was not correct. I spelled out the name of the street for her and told her the numbers very carefully and she told me the food would come soon. I waited almost another hour and still there was nothing. So by the time of waiting for nearly two hours I just got fed up, and I wasn’t going to bother to call and explain things again. I just ended up ordering a burger and fries and picking it up from Las Alitas.

    It was just a weird situation, and never had I had anything like that happen before. They never once asked for my cellphone number, which if there was a problem they easily could have called me and try and sort it out. So basically I just felt ignored for two hours. I suppose it’s good they  never did arrive else I would have had to pay for food that probably wouldn’t even have been warm. I definitely won’t be going to that place ever or requesting anything from them….. at least not that location.

    There is a planetarium here that I would love to go to one day though it’s a little out of the way for me and I would have to take two buses to get there. I have a friend that wanted to go with me but said that on the day she is off of work, Monday, it is always closed. I just checked the website though and found out on February 4 it will be open for the long weekend here, so I will talk to her tonight and maybe we will be able to go on Monday. If not I’ll figure out how to get there and go myself one day.

    It’s been kind of sad but I haven’t spent time with anyone in 10 days ! I really need to make more plans with people as this has just been too much time alone. I talked to someone yesterday and we kind of talked of having dinner but she might be busy with school, but we will probably go one day. I did read that RIM (Research in Motion, the company that makes Blackberry) has changed their company named to Blackberry and are launching their new phone Blackberry 10.

    I can remember four years ago when I got my first and only Blackberry, the Pearl, and initially I thought it was the coolest thing ever. However after seeing how often it would freeze, having troubles with the speakers, tracking ball, and an extremely high cell phone bill every month, the magic wore off pretty quickly. And it seems in those four years I wasn’t the only one turned off by Blackberries, and a lot of people turned their attention to iPHONEs or other smartphones such as the Android or Galaxy.

    However as much as Blackberry is struggling, it’s always good that people have options in the market place, and seeing the company try to re-brand itself and come out strong with a new product launch is cool. There will always be some Blackberry diehards and maybe they will be able to win some people back if the Blackberry 10 is truly an exceptional product.

    I’ve said before though that I believed that the company that manufactures Blackberry seems to be on a sinking ship, though with smart management, innovation, and people’s willingness to try what is new, they might just have a chance to plug the leak and set sail for a while longer. While I don’t see Blackberry being able to overcome Apple over some of the other phones, they really don’t have to. If they can get to a point where they are making a profit and delivering to their shareholders that’s really all that would matter.

    Of course they’d want to be # 1 in market share and I’m sure they will try and get there, but first things first they have to get back on track and right their sinking ship. So while I think they are off to a good start with that, they have a lot of work to do to get back to where they were five years ago or so. It’s one of the interesting things about the world as time moves on many things change.

    Like my example with the restaurant yesterday there, if your product doesn’t deliver (mine more literally than most) people will be turned off and the company will ultimately be doomed. So while I don’t expect Blackberry to get back to full strength taking on Apple and the other companies, it will be interesting to see if in the next year they can right their sinking ship, or if they’ll continue sinking into the abyss of the history books. For the next question:

    Have you had a Blackberry phone before ? How was your experience ? Do you or have you had an iPHONE or other smart phone ? How is that experience ? Are your phone bills expensive ?

    Today I’ll leave you all with some pictures from Barrio Antiguo in Monterrey. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Sunday, bye for now.

  • Report # 966

    Well it’s basically 1:00 pm here and I just spent over an hour cleaning up the place. It was well overdue so I’m glad that it’s done. I was stupidly awake until almost 5:00 am this morning, so I didn’t get up until around 11:40 am, so tonight I will get back to my normal 2:00 am bed time. On Friday I went to Cinépolis in the Galerias mall and I saw Hansel & Gretel. It was basically an action movie where they slaughtered witches, so it was very interesting !

    Afterwards I just read the paper and had lunch at Wok before heading home. I ran on Saturday morning and came home and went to Cinépolis again, this time seeing a Mexican movie, Siete Años de Matrimonio (Seven years of marriage) It was funny and probably very true for a lot of married people seeing as so many people have trouble staying faithful these days. I ordered lunch from Super Salads and walked to picked it up and just relaxed the rest of the day at home.

    I ran again yesterday morning and came home and had a shower and got my camera ready to go out and take pictures, though I just ended up going downtown and having lunch at VIPS, receiving my 50 % discount. It was one of those days I just didn’t feel like going out somewhere and taking pictures… I suppose after you take over 16,000 of them some days you just don’t feel like doing it as much as others.

    I had tortilla soup, a chicken burger and fries, along with the complimentary tortilla chips and salsa, and a piece of chocolate cheesecake. Obviously I was pretty stuffed after, though I was able to walk for almost an hour after to the metro station through Paseo Santa Lucía and Parque Fundidora, burning off at least a few of those calories. So as I said today I was sleeping way too late, I cleaned the place up, and after typing all this up and commenting everyone I will go for a run and who knows, probably see another movie.

    About a month and a half ago a singer, Jenni Rivera, who was pretty popular in Mexico, had a concert here in Monterrey. After the concert she and some other people who were part of her tour got on a plane to head to another city, but the plane crashed outside of Monterrey and everyone aboard died. Obviously it was a complete tragedy, though I seem to be reading about these types of plane crashes time and time again. And these aren’t planes that are being crashed by airline companies, they are privately run smaller planes.

    So I can safety say I have no plans on every getting on a smaller type of plane as to me it’s just too risky. I know that the airline companies have had some issues in the past throughout the years, but all in all, the safety records for them seem to be almost impeccable and it’s very rare to hear about a tragedy on a commercial airline. Some people might think I am being a little paranoid, but to me when there are many stories of these tragedies happening, it just seems to be a smarter move to avoid trying the same sort of thing.

    Another thing, after Jenni died, within days there were already people with the face of Jenni on t-shirts saying things like “Jenni por siempre” (Jenni forever) I have to admit I think these people were not showing much respect for the loss of her life as literally days after she died people were out on the streets and in stores trying to profit off of this tragedy. I have to say though sometimes the sales pitch people are using here is a bit odd.

    Just yesterday I was walking downtown and some guy who was selling things was on a microphone saying that the cold weather is coming back and that he was selling scarfs and gloves. It would be a good sales pitch, but when it’s the end of January and it’s 28 C (80 F) I can’t imagine too many people would be thinking about winter. Today actually says it will be 31 C (88 F) and 32 C (90 F) tomorrow, and then it shows the temperature will drop, but only to around 23 C (73 F), so still certainly not winter weather !

    Anyways back to my point, I think there is a time and place for everything, and just like with trying to market winter clothes when it’s super hot, trying to sell t-shirts with the image of someone who just died just doesn’t seem to appropriate… though obviously for much different reasons than the winter clothes. Now the blame here does not just go to the people selling the clothes, but I have to say probably the families of the person who died.

    I can imagine when a singer or a known personality passes on, in at least some of the cases there are people in their family who are not only ok with selling those types of merchandise, but practically encouraging it. Why ? Well  royalties ! They could gain quite a bit of money selling those types of products after the well known personality has passed on. As everyone knows there always seems to be Elvis merchandise, and more recently things for Michael Jackson.

    Obviously people can buy what they want, but I can’t say I really agree with the fact that people are getting paid off basically exploiting someone who has just died or continuing to exploit there memory to fatten their pockets for years and decades to come. Of course though as long as there will be the demand, the supply will be there as well, so maybe some people have to shake their heads and ask what they are really doing. For the next question:

    Have you ever flown in a small plane ? Do you think there is greater danger than flying commercially ? What do you think of trying to sell/buy merchandise of a known personality who has passed away ?

    I will leave you all with some photos that I took on Thursday from downtown Monterrey. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Thursday, bye for now.

  • Report # 965

    Hey everyone, I hope that you’ve all been having a great week. Just 11 months remaining until Christmas ! I’m just kidding ! I would assume we can all wait those 11 months and aren’t in a super big hurry for that day to arrive yet. As Tuesday was a super cloudy day I just decided to have a sort of lazy day. I didn’t go running and in the afternoon I went to Interplaza to see Django. I was telling a friend that it was a very entertaining movie, though definitely super gruesome.

    She was telling me that’s normal for Quentin Tarantino movies, though after checking up on wikipedia I determined that it was actually the first Quentin Tarantino movie that I had ever seen. I don’t know if that is a surprising fact, but from the lists he hasn’t made so many movies so I’m not too shocked. Afterwards I headed home and relaxed for a while. I took a short walk in the evening, taking some pictures and stopping at Subway.

    Wednesday was sunny and it got up to around 24 C (75 F). I went for a run in the morning and then headed home and had a shower before going for a walk. I walked up some hills near the mall that I always go to, and I found a street that heads all the way up the side of the mountain and there was a place to walk along the mountain side. There were lots of nice city views, so I was able to take lots of pictures. I didn’t stay up there too long as there was a fence beside me, and I didn’t really know if I was supposed to be walking up there.

    I headed down and then went to the mall and had a frappuichino from Starbucks and some lunch at a place in the food court. On the way home I stopped in the park for a while before heading home for the day. Despite my walk and run and stop in the park, I still managed to get home well before 5:00 pm. I got an email from the lady at Teleperformance asking me if I’ve heard anything from the migration people and I told her not yet, but I would let her know as soon as I do. After today will only actually be 10 business days since the company handed in my documents, so I have a feeling it’s going to make some time.

    I went for a run again yesterday morning and once again headed home, had a shower, and headed out to take some pictures. It was a super sunny day and probably one of the hottest days of 2013 here, as it got up to 27 C. (80 F) I ended up walking a lot more and taking many more pictures than I imagined. I was walking from 1:00 pm until after 4:00 pm, and I took over 300 pictures.

    I started downtown by a plaza there and walked through some park area and by the government palace before walking through some downtown streets, Barrio Antiguo and finally along Paseo Santa Lucía. I had taken pictures in most of these areas before, but it was such a nice day I thought it wouldn’t hurt to do it all once more. I had dinner at Chilis which was close to the metro station I needed to get home. I got home a little after 6:00 pm, and then spent a long time uploading all of my pictures to Facebook.

    Today is going to be another fairly hot day, and in fact from what I’ve seen the next week will be very warm. It seems winter here has come to an end…. at least for a week. After all of the walking and running I’ve done over the last few days, today will be a very relaxing day and I just plan on walking to the mall and seeing a movie. As I was reading the paper yesterday, the main story was about Florence Cassez, a French woman who had spent the last 7 years in a Mexico prison, for her alleged role with a gang involved in kidnappings.

    She had come to Mexico to work and she met a boyfriend here who was part of the gang, though she always proclaimed her innocence. From what I have read, some of the victims claimed to have heard her voice, though they didn’t actually see her. This issue created a thorn in the side in the relations between Mexico and France in recent years, but just the other day, the Mexican court voted to free this woman, and she has already been sent back to France.

    The front page of the newspaper from Monterrey, Mileno says: Falla la Corte y deja libre a la plagiaria (Court fails and lets the plagiarist free) And some of the columnists wrote some pretty angry columns. One writer even said that Mexico “es una porquería de país” Basically saying that the country is dirty, not good for allowing this woman to walk free. Another columnist wrote “Florence: nuestra (our) Amanda Knox” making comparisons to the young US woman who spent a number of years in an Italian prison on charges of murder.

    On Facebook I saw that one of my friends had made a post saying how horrible it is that the French people are celebrating the return of this woman, someone who she clearly believes was responsible for the kidnapping and murder of victims. She went on to say that at least Mexico has one less bad person, who is now in France. So emotions are really running high, and clearly a lot of people believe this woman is very guilty and has gotten off so easy with kidnapping and murder.

    As someone who has just read about this in the paper very recently, it would be easy with me to just say oh she’s guilty and got away with committing horrible crimes, but obviously I wasn’t there and I can’t be 100 % sure. Clearly a lot of people are upset about her release, so the Mexican courts and police and justice system in general didn’t handle this case very well. So while I certainly can’t say whether this woman is guilty or innocent, she should have been given another trial after some very good police and detective work was done, to really see if she was innocent instead of just letting her free on mistakes made by police and the justice department.

    I can definitely see the similarities with this case to the one of Amanda Knox. (those of you who don’t know either story can google them) Ultimately I can say I believe in both situations these women were released prematurely and not enough good police work was done here. If either one of them is innocent than ok, but just releasing them both without getting a real good investigation done and a proper trial is just plain irresponsible and offensive to the victims of the crimes that they are accused of.

    With that being said, in cases like these, it’s important I think that the people who read the paper, watch TV, don’t go out of there way and take one side or another, because none of us were there and unless we truly know the story, we can’t really jump on one side or the other. It’s just important that when someone is arrested of a crime and spends time in prison, police and the courts do their work properly, if not there will be more stories like these ones, and that just causes more pain than necessary to the family of the victims.

    For the next question:

    Do you tend to have strong opinions over stories like these and take one side or the other ?

    I will leave you all with some pictures I took on Tuesday evening and Wednesday afternoon. I hope that everyone has an amazing weekend. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Monday, bye for now.

    References: Mileno Newspaper January 24, 2013. “México es una porquería de país” Ciro GómezLeyva. “Florence: nuestra Amanda Knox” León Krauze

  • Report # 964

    I saw my 10th movie of 2013 in theatres on Saturday as I went to see El Cartel de Los Sapos, which was a Colombian movie about drug trafficking. I think it sent a good message to people who are interested in getting into that line of work to make some quick money, as almost all of the characters in the movie ended up dead ! Before the movie I went to Wok and had some sushi and soup, another place that I’ve been to tons of times since around Christmas.

    As I was buying the popcorn the guy asked me where I was from. I said something like “I don’t look Mexican ?” And he said no and that he saw me there many times. I think you know you are going to a place too often when the employees start to recognize you ! I had the same “problem” at Tim Hortons and Starbucks in the past. I went for a run on Sunday and once again I was pretty sore after finishing, so it’s clear that the shoes that I’m using are not meant for heavy duty 10 kilometer runs.

    I will hold out for a while, at least until I make it home and can get some other shoes, but I don’t think I’ll be running every single day for a bit. After my run on Sunday I came home and had a shower and headed out to VIPS to have lunch. Like the previous times I was just eating slowly and sitting and reading the newspaper for a couple of hours. I had a soup, a plate with fries and chicken, and a chocolate cheesecake for dessert. I got it all for 40 % off, and I will return one more time to get the 50 % discount.

    Afterwards I walked along Paseo Santa Lucía and headed through Fundidora Park and to the metro to go home. Yesterday I met a friend in Fundidora Park in the morning and we walked through the park and Santa Lucía before going a bit through downtown and walking through Barrio Antiguo, which is an old neighourhood in Monterrey with lots of old style buildings, mostly houses, schools, restaurants, and cafeterias, with a few stores.

    My friend was telling me that five years ago there were so many bars and clubs in the area though the majority of them had closed down due to the insecurity and violence that was in the area due to the drug gangs. It’s always interesting hearing these stories because in all of my time in the city I’ve never seen one bad thing. I’ve read some stories in the paper, and I’ve heard of what has happened in the past few years, but personally I’ve never seen anything.

    Maybe I’m just lucky, but I still believe that the situation has improved in the last year or so, and that in most cases, only the people involved in those drug gangs will be the ones in major danger. Clearly the neighbourhood is in need of a revitalization project though as there are many empty buildings. So the potential is there, and from what I’ve read in the paper, they do plan on doing something in the next couple of months, but I’m not sure if that will be more centered in this neighbourhood or the downtown in general.

    After walking through the neighbourhood we found a bench and sat down. Monday’s are always a quiet day in Monterrey as a lot of places aren’t open and it’s just more laid back. Of course there is more traffic on the roads than a Sunday, but the stores and the streets and parks just don’t have much people. On a nearby bench two guys were sitting and I think they were gay. This was interesting for me to see as this was the first time I’ve seen two guys out in public in Monterrey where it was very obvious they were gay.

    It’s a lot different in Mexico City where you can walk down the streets of downtown and seeing guys and girls holding hands is much more a normal thing. It’s just fascinating to me to see and notice the difference in the cultures of the different cities that I have been in. Ultimately people just have to be respectful and let others live their lives like they want, and if we can all do that I think acceptance will be a much easier thing. Unfortunately I still think too many people struggle with this idea, so there is still much work to be done around the world.

    Afterwards we headed downtown and we took a bus to the south of the city to have lunch at a place called Bonkey Sushi. I have no idea how they got that name, but the restaurant had been there since 1995 so it was obviously not a bad place. And after eating the food I was very impressed and I would love to return again. I had some California rolls with octopus and some rice, fried cheese, and a desert which was fried ice cream. For some reason they brought me the dessert right away and I actually had dessert before I had lunch !

    We stayed in the restaurant for a couple of hours before heading out and walking around a nearby park. We sat in the park for a while too on a very uncomfortable bench as the sun went down and the air got a bit cooler. It wasn’t a cold day though as it was around 23 C (73 F), it just felt cooler once the sun was gone and the wind was still there. We started walking along the highway to get to where I had to take the bus and it was already coming so I quickly gave my friend a hug and headed on the bus.

    Overall it was a great day and I didn’t get back to the house until around 7:00 pm. It’s amazing how the time flies when you spend a full day with someone. I actually now have three ideas for places to go and take photos after yesterday, but today is super cloudy and I think I’ll wait until the sun comes back as that always makes for nicer photos. There were tons of apartments around where we were walking, so if everything goes well with the visa and I start working, maybe eventually I would move to an apartment if I can find one at a good price.

    I read some signs of places with services included, including internet, and if I did find something good I would probably go eventually, as I’m sure just by buying groceries, I’d be saving enough money from not eating out everyday to pay more to rent. These are questions for the future though and I won’t worry about them right now. I have a skype call with a friend to make at 4:00 pm, so maybe I’ll try to squeeze in a movie before.

    Anyways, that’s all I have for today, for the next question:

    Is the Super Bowl Over-hyped ?

    I would have to say yes ! While it’s the championship game, at the end of the day, it’s still a football game. It’s interesting how it attracts attention of people who are not even really football fans, and I’m sure a lot of people only really care about the half time show. I would say unless someone is a football fan from either of the two cities playing in the final, it’s really not that big of a deal.

    Some years the game is very entertaining, other years not so much. In the end it’s a bigger day for advertising dollars and talking about the half time show than the actual game itself…. it’s definitely been overshadowed in my opinion. I always read about who wins and about the game, but I don’t think I’ve ever sat down and watched a championship game from start to finish…. guess I’m no super fan !

    I wish everyone all of the best with everything. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Friday, bye for now.

  • Report # 963

    So the first week has past since I got the news that the company had delivered my documents to the migration people and I haven’t heard anything. Of course I’m not surprised, if anything I would have been surprised if I had any news seeing as it’s only been one week. I think the best I can hope for is getting some news after four weeks, but I’ll have to wait and see, logging into the migration site every few days to check up on things, to see how everything plays out.

    On Wednesday I took the metro downtown and I had lunch at VIPS. I had some tortilla soup and a hawaiian burger with fries. I got my 30 % off, and I still have to return two more times to enjoy the rest of my discounts. Afterwards I walked to a coffee shop and had a chocolate frappuichino and walked to the metro station walking along Paseo Santa Lucía and through Fundidora Park, enjoying the super sunny and warm day.

    On Thursday morning I went for a run once again and in the afternoon I headed to Galerias mall. I had lunch at Chilis and then I went to Cinépolis to watch Moonrise Kingdom. It was a very unique and fascinating movie and I really enjoyed it. I encourage everyone to check it out as it really is an interesting movie and very entertaining. I headed home after and just had a relaxing evening in the house. Yesterday I ran for the fifth day in a row, but I think tomorrow will be a break from running.

    The top of my right foot feels like it’s been bruised even though there is no bruise. I think I’m paying the price for running so much in 20 dollar no name running shoes. I will hold out and use them for a while more, but if everything goes well and I get to go home soon and come back, I’ll definitely be bringing some of the shoes I have from home as these shoes really are no good for running.

    So in a decision used to get new pairs of shoes for as cheap as possible, it ends up that it really wasn’t a good idea. Obviously the most pricey shoes aren’t usually the best either, but it’s definitely true that the cheapest running shoes out there are no good for hardcore running. Even though in terms of my physical condition I’m probably in better shape than I’ve been in my whole life, I can’t be too happy with my hair. I was looking in the mirror at the movie theatre the other day and my hair seemed more grey than ever.

    I remember being super surprised when I began noticing how grey my dad’s hair had gotten, but that was when he was in his mid 40′s not his mid 20′s ! I’ve always said there has been too much stress in my life and that’s why I’ve gone so grey so soon. It’s just scary at the rate I’m going I will be all grey by the time I’m 30. I suppose I shouldn’t care so much anyways, I’ve always thought any age after 25 is old, so I guess I’m just getting old like I thought I would be getting.

    Yesterday afternoon I went to the Galerias mall again and I went to the movie theatre to see The Last Stand with Arnold Swartzenegger. This was a great action movie that was very entertaining and I enjoyed it a lot. Though another movie that probably doesn’t do too good for Mexico’s reputation unfortunately, portraying the country as a place filled with corruption and drug lords. People just have to realize a movie is a movie and they tend to exagerrate things at times and people can’t allow movie depictions to influence how they see things in reality too much.

    Afterwards I went to Wok and had lots of great sushi and soup; I’ve really fallen in love with that place ! I walked home and that was it for my day. Today from what I’ve seen it’s going to be super sunny, so I plan to try and take some pictures in some other areas of the city. Well the last seven years in January I have had a little awards write-up so I might as well continue with the tradition even though it always takes me a bit of time. So here it goes……

                                                               The 2013 Kyle Awards

    A. Personal

    Biggest Achievement: Making it to Mexico, regular running

    Well I don’t know if it’s much of an achievement, but I got through some difficult periods over the past couple of years and managed to get myself together enough to head to Mexico in August and embark on a new stage in my life. I was able to find a company that wanted to hire me and while the process is on-going, I have taken it as far as I could have personally, so I can just sit back and hope for the best.

    Secondly, as I noted above, I’m super happy with how healthy I’ve become with my running. I can now run easily 10 kilometers on a supremely regular basis without any problems. I just have to work on eating more fruits and vegetables and less junk food !

    Biggest Disappointment: Not being where I want to be in my life yet

    This has to do with the biggest achievement. My biggest disappointment is that I haven’t gotten to where I want to be in my life yet. I’ve failed on many levels, and I can only hope my plan works as I’ve put everything into this and to fail would be crushing. So while I”m happy with myself that I’ve managed to come this far, I’m disappointed, as I was in previous years that I haven’t come as far in terms of personal achievements as I would have liked by this point.

    B. World Events

    Greatest News: Seeing how cities are taking part to help the environment

    I had to think about this, and seeing as not much is coming to mind, I’ll just have to say about something that impressed me. I suppose I could look online and read biggest stories of 2012, but that would be cheating and these are my awards ! I will say knowing that around the world politicians and people in so many cities have taken the whole climate thing seriously, and many cities have done their parts to reduce emissions.

    While this might not be big news to many people, to me it’s huge. If none of these steps were taken, the world we live in would be a much sicker place than it is, and things would just continue getting worse. I don’t know if enough good things have been done to improve things, but at the very least the worsening of the world’s air quality has been slowed down, and in a number of places positive changes have been noticed. This is a great start but we all have to work harder to keep this planet clean.

    Worst News: The poor economy in many countries, shooting tragedies

    I would have to say it has to be two things. I’ve read stories about how horrible the economy is in so many countries. Italy, Spain and Greece are struggling so much and there are so many people without work. And I’m sure the horrible economy has effected people in many other countries as well.

    This is super sad because so many people who had good jobs don’t have any work now, and other people who are looking for jobs cannot find anything. And obviously without working, living isn’t so easy. I really hope the economic situation in 2013 improves and a lot of people can find jobs and get back on their feet.

    Secondly all of the stories about gun violence that I read. It seems that at least some people have gotten the message that things need to change, and that is at least a start, however unless some meaningful changes happen very soon, I can only fear of the day when I read about more shooting deaths.

    C. Restaurants/Stores

    Favourite Restaurant: Restaurant on the beach in Michoacán

    I will have to give this award to a restaurant that I ate at on Playa Jardin in Lázaro Cárdenas Michoacán. I ordered a plate filled with huge shrimp wrapped with bacon and cheese, with salad, potatoes, and fries as well. While it certainly was an expensive plate, there was so much food and it was perfect in every way. It’s too bad I can’t remember the name of the restaurant. It just shows how unprofessional my awards really are, I can’t even remember to who I’m giving half of them to !

    Worst Restaurant: Jin Du (chinese food)

    I only went to this place because I was hungry one night and Subway wasn’t making any more sandwhiches. A guy working at the gas station here in Monterrey asked if I liked Chinese food and I said yes so he told me about this place. I’m really wishing my meeting with that gas station attendant never happened. While the food was extremely cheap and I received so much of it, it was absolutely horrible.

    In fact I can easily say this was the worst chinese food that I had eaten in my life. It was so bad I ate hardly more than 1/4 of the food and I threw the rest in the garbage. It was so bad I said that the owners should go back to China and learn how to cook their own food. It was just that horrible. I better stop writing about this or I’m going to have nightmares.

    Best Store: Zellers

    While all the Zellers stores in Canada have been taken over by Target, I was able to take advantage of the huge clearance sales they had in the store in buying a giant suitcase which I have used to come here to Mexico. Well my grandmother bought the suitcase as a gift, but it was just an amazing deal for savings and it’s a great suitcase that will last me for many years to come. I’ll definitely miss that store !

    Worst Store: Any place with horrible/rude service

    I had no clue what to put for this so I will just give this award to any place that employs such lousy customer service staff that treat customers like dirt for no reason. These sort of people should be canned ASAP, before they drag the company’s reputation through the mud with their horrible manners.

    D. Entertainment

    Best movie of the year: Cambio de Planes

    I really have to give this award to that movie from Spain. It’s an incredibly heart-warming story about a married father who befriends a young teenaged boy with terminal cancer in the hospital. While at times it’s super sad, it’s such a funny movie and overall just incredible

    Worst movie of the year: Viaje de generación

    Usually I like most of the Mexican movies that I had seen, but this one was pure trash. Basically just a horribly made film about young people on vacation who party and have lots of sex and complicated love lives. It just basically followed the leads of some Hollywood movies with very similar storylines which also flat out sucked.

    Now seeing as these movies are both foreign language films for everyone on here, I will think of another few. The Hobbit movie was an excellent fantasy film. And worst film I would say the Dictator. While it was super funny at times, it went beyond overboard with the sexual comedy and ended up being just plain gross So I will have to say in terms of the sexual humour it was horribly bad.

    Best TV Show: Absolutely none !

    I didn’t watch any TV this past year really so I really can’t give an award for best TV show. I’m sure 90 % of all the shows on TV in the past year were absolute garbage.

    Worst TV Show: Here Comes Honeyboo boo

    Just because I don’t watch TV doesn’t mean that I don’t hear about some of the garbage that is shown on air. From the clips I’ve seen of this all I can say is Wow…. and not a good wow. I’m more ashamed of the people who actually sit down and watch such trashy ensuring more low lives on the television cash in tons of money. When will people wake up and live their own lives ?!

    E. Sports

    Best NFL Team: New York Giants

    While the team failed to make the playoffs this past year, they once again demonstrated in 2012, that you don’t have to be the strongest team in the season to make a bang, but to come together and play well in the playoffs. For the second time in five years they defeated the amazing New England Patriots in the Superbowl…. they definitely deserve props for that.

    Worst NFL Team: Kansas City Chiefs

    Well what is supposed to be a proud NFL franchise with such a rich tradition of history and power proved that they belong in some sort of minor league. They finished with 2 wins and 14 losses, and as soon as the season finished, did a team house cleaning, firing the coach and the general manager. They have hired a great coach for 2013 though and they will be significantly better this coming year.

    Best NBA Team: Oklahoma City Thunder

    While they didn’t win the NBA title, they are such a young team with an amazing future ahead of them. I can’t give this award to the Miami Heat because they only did what they were expected to do. If they win another time or two I’ll be glad to give them this award.

    Worst NBA Team: Charlotte Bobcats

    Well they won 7 out of 66 games last season, and while they’ve already won more games this season, they are still among the league’s worst teams, and after a quick start they’ve been dreadful. Apparently Michael Jordan isn’t as good at owning a team as he was at playing on a team !

    Best NHL Team: Los Angeles Kings

    They barely made the playoffs, but like the New York Giants they won when it counted, dominating almost every team they faced in the post season. I would be shocked to see them repeat this feat this season, but they definitely have earned this award.

    Worst NHL Team: Columbus Bluejackets

    These guys are just another example of a franchise that never seems to make any progress as they are consistently bad year after year after year. Maybe one of these years someone will get it right with this team, but I wouldn’t count on it.

    Best CFL Team: Toronto Argonauts

    Well another team like the New York Giants, they didn’t have a great regular season, but they won when it counted, and at the end of the day a team would rather have a mediocre regular season and walk away with a championship than an amazing regular season only to walk away with nothing.

    Worst CFL Team: Hamilton Tigercats

    I honestly thought before the season started that this team would end up as one of the top teams, but wow did they disappoint. Basically they finished as one of the worst teams in the league, and they already have a new coach and General Manger for next year.

    Well I suppose I should include soccer this year just for the hell of it !

    Best MLS Team: Los Angeles Galaxy

    They successfully defended their championship and any team that can do that is definitely # 1 in my books. Even more surprising knowing how horribly they started the season.

    Worst MLS Team: Toronto FC

    This team has been around for a number of seasons, and not only has never made the playoffs before, they are absolutely dreadful year after year. So those two things make them perfect candidates for this award.

    Anyways I know that I used to do more categories but I really can’t be bothered to go through all of my Xanga and think of what else to add so I’m going to finish it here. For the next question:

    What is something/someone that you would like to give an award to and why ?

    Thankfully that includes another Kyle Awards and I won’t have to worry about thinking of more stuff for a whole year. I hope that everyone has an amazing weekend. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Tuesday, bye for now.

  • Report # 962

    Hey everyone, I hope that you’ve all been having a wonderful week. On Sunday I met up with a friend and we walked along Paseo Santa Lucía for a while before sitting down and talking. It was a cooler day and completely overcast though it definitely wasn’t cold like it was the first few days of the year as I think it was around 15 C (60 F). Afterwards we talked back to where my friend and parked and we drove to Guadeloupe to have lunch.

    We went to an Italian restaurant and I had a plate of half pasta and half lasagna, so it was very good. Afterwards we headed to a mall in Guadeloupe and we went to Santa Clara and had some ice cream and sat down and talked for a long time. At one point my friend went to the bathroom and I was waiting and waiting though she hadn’t returned. I ordered a mocha frappuichino and drank it all and threw it away and she still hadn’t returned. I was beginning to think that she just left !

    It turns out there was a long line-up for the washroom so that’s why I was waiting for so long. Afterwards we went to Cinemex to see if there were any movies on, but none of them were really starting right away so we decided we would see a movie another day. She drove me to a metro station and I headed home just as the sun was going down. So it was a fun day as I got to spend time with someone and talk lots.

    I came home and then decided that I wanted to go to the movies, so I quickly checked what was on and I walked up to Galerias and watched the Urban Explorer. It was one of those horror movies with young people from other countries together in a group wanting to explore and they slowly get killed off one by one. Obviously I don’t watch these movies expecting Oscar worthy entertainment but they are fun to watch every now and then. It’s hard to believe, but that was already the 7th movie I’ve seen in theatres since the beginning of 2013 !

    On Monday I went for a run at Fundidora Park in the morning and came home and did my laundry and cleaned up for a while. I just walked to Subway to have a sandwhich and some cookies for lunch, and later in the day I headed to Interplaza to use the computers there to print off my migration document to see if I could read the number on it. I picked up a milk shake from Helados Sultana, but it was so thick it was too hard to drink ! I walked for a bit downtown and then headed home and found out I still couldn’t make out the number.

    Yesterday I sent an email to the lady at Teleperformance and she got back to me with the number and I checked and I was able to log-in to the migration website and follow my case. Nothing has been determined yet, but it had only been 4 days, so I know it will take some time. I’ve done my part, the company has done their part, now I just have to wait for the government people to do their part. I am hoping I get an answer within a month though as it would make things simpler for me !

    I ran yesterday afternoon as I had been on the computer for a few hours in the morning, and I walked to Galerias in the afternoon and had lunch at Wok. I had some delicious sushi with eel and octopus with some good Miso soup and rice. This may not sound so appealing to everyone, but I’m not kidding it’s amazing ! Afterwards I picked up some donuts and headed home and talked to my grandmother for a while. This was only the 2nd time I had talked to her, but I was able to do it as I still have some skype time left to use in January and February.

    I ran again this morning, the third day in a row, and now I’ve arrived home to type this up and comment everyone before heading out for lunch. The other day I was talking with a friend and she was really down because she had heard her parents yelling at one another. She’s grown up now in her 20′s, but still it’s probably nothing that any kids would want to see from their parents. She told me that she believed her father had had a child with another woman, and now that child is 15 years old.

    Immediately I thought about Arnold Schwartzenegger and I told her about that, but obviously she was not in the mood to hear any sort of comparisons, and rightly so. I was telling her at least she’s grown up now and it would be easier to deal with now than if she was a kid, but of course that doesn’t make the situation any easier. The problem in these sorts of situations is the selfish actions of the father end up leading to the destruction of what were solid families without much for problems beforehand.

    Now I have no idea if my friend knows 100 % exactly what happened, but from the sounds of it, she was pretty sure of herself, and her sister was well aware of things as well, so it doesn’t sound good. I suppose her parents could talk things out when they have both calmed down, but the father clearly made things a lot harder on himself. Obviously being unfaithful is wrong in any marriage, but when someone commits and error, a seriously poor lack of judgment and cheats on their partner, they should come clean.

    A lot of partners would just be so upset they would want to end the marriage immediately, but if there is any chance for forgiveness and a chance to try and save the marriage, it would be more likely if the person who has cheated comes clean right away, instead of 15 years later. Now having a kid with someone else outside of a marriage makes things all that more difficult, but it’s the same thing in terms of how to deal with it.

    If the person who has a kid outside of the marriage with someone else comes clean about it right away, at the very least they will have a better chance at saving the marriage than someone who tries to lie and cover things up for as long as possible. These types of situations are unfortunate, but I wouldn’t be surprised to know if they are somewhat common. The truth is, and I think some surveys have showed this before, a lot of people have been unfaithful in some capacity in their lives. This is unfortunately bad news to hear, but lets face it people are human and they make mistakes.

    When someone is considering whether or not to leave a cheating partner, they will obviously consider a lot, including is the person truly sorry, will they be unfaithful again, or they may even look at themselves in the mirror and wonder if they did anything wrong that would have led the other person to become unfaithful. In my opinion there are no excuses for cheating and anyone who does it is clearly behaving badly, and if they don’t know that they are just plain stupid.

    Cheating is wrong in any shape or form, but I would say it’s a million times worse when two people are married and someone is unfaithful. If they couldn’t envision themselves staying faithful to the same person for the rest of their lives they shouldn’t have got married to begin with. However from all of the things I’ve heard in the last few months I’m starting to think getting married is just not such a good idea these days anyways. I’m sure there are couples out there who are madly in love who never actually marry, and couples who are married, but fail to love one another properly.

    I’ve tried to think about how I would feel if I discovered one of my parents had a child with another person, but obviously it’s super hard to imagine something like that, but I can try ! I think I’m too old to be bothered by it now. Obviously I would be extremely shocked, but I would be more intrigued in meeting the half brother or sister in that situation and learning more about the whole story and what happened. And it would be a thing of my parents, nothing to do with me, so there would be no use getting upset about it.

    Of course all this is hypothetical and I’m just imagining. I’m sure neither of my parents have never done anything such as that, and this whole thing will never come up. It’s just unfortunate in many situations the kids end up as the ones getting hurt over their parents indiscretions. And any person who makes a serious mistake in their relationship, especially if they are married and have kids needs to come clean and toughen up and admit their errors. Obviously it wouldn’t be easy, but the fallout from coming clean would be way less than if people find out years later !

    So while it’s too much to expect that we are all perfect and no one will make a mistake, I think if everyone works on their honesty a little more and does a little better in terms of taking ownership of the errors they’ve made, a lot of these messy scandalous situations could be dealt with and cleaned up much easier. However it’s best for people to avoid the whole affair thing in the first place. And as I’ve said in the past, anyone who gets to the point of really considering having an affair with someone has one of two much better options than just having the affair:

    They can either talk with their partner and try to come up with ways to improve their own marriage, including getting counseling, or they can admit to their partner that the marriage isn’t working and it’s time for a divorce. This may seem like an easy way out, but the truth is some marriages just won’t work, and the person will be a lot less hurt knowing that their partner was honest and told them as much, instead of trying to pretend everything is amazing while they are screwing around with someone else.

    Most importantly though in the situations where children are involved, the kids need to be put first, because they will be the ones left to deal with the mess. So any two people who don’t think they can handle a family or a marriage should just stay away from being parents and not get married to begin with. Of course this is easier said than done and one of the tragedies of this world is that any two people can have kids. Just thinking of things like that really makes me wish that we’d live in a world where Storks would only give babies to deserving parents !

    Anyways I’m going all over the place with this, so for the next question:

    Have you ever dealt with a situation involving unfaithfulness with someone, or do you know of someone who has gone through such a situation ? How should people who cheat handle the mess that they have created ?

    That’s all for another day. I wish everyone all of the best with everything. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Saturday, bye for now.

  • Report # 961

    Hey everyone, I hope that you’ve all been having a fantastic weekend. On Thursday I headed out in the morning and took the metro to a station that I hadn’t been before to see if I could make my way to some places that I wanted to go and take lots of pictures. It was a perfect day, super sunny, not a cloud in the sky, and around 25 C. (77 F) My day went super well as I wasn’t lost once and found everything I wanted to see.

    I found my way to Parque España and entered and took a bunch of pictures there. It’s a nice small park with places to swim, though the pools were all empty that day. Afterwards I continued along the highway and making a turn on a street that I thought would take me to where I wanted to go. I was right, but it was a super long walk. I was walking in the south part of Monterrey and it is great as it’s even closer to the mountains so I got some great mountain scenery the whole way.

    I was walking for around four hours by the time I arrived to Super Salads to have lunch. I was so surprised that it was so busy at 3:30 pm, but I waited for a while and then got a table and read a paper and had lunch. Afterwards I waited for a bus to take me back downtown and I picked up a frappuichino and some donuts and headed home. It was a super long day, though I was happy that I got such good exercise and managed to take lots of pictures…. 156 in total !

    On Friday I talked with my aunt and grandmother on skype in the morning and then I went for a run in Fundidora Park. Afterwards I came home and had a shower and walked up to the Galerias mall to see Fire with Fire, which was a Bruce Willis action movie about gang wars between blacks and aryan groups. It was a very interesting movie and I enjoyed it. I headed home in the evening stopping at Subway and that was pretty much it for Friday.

    Once again I ran yesterday morning and then after coming home and having a shower I headed out again downtown and had lunch at VIPS. I had picked up a newspaper and I was probably sitting there reading and eating for almost two hours. I will have to go back to VIPS a few times this months as I have a discount card and the next three times I would get 30, 40, and then 50 % off. I picked up a frappuichino after from a place but it still had ice cubes in it so it was poorly made… I don’t think I’ll be going back to that place again.

    I walked along the Santa Lucía Riverwalk heading back through Fundidora Park and to the metro station and home. In the evening I walked up to the taco place and I noticed they had some types of tacos that I wanted to try, and they were really good with cheese, so I will definitely be going there again. On Friday I finally got an email from the company telling me that my documents have been delivered to the migration institute. I now have a case number and a password with which I will be able to login to the migration website and follow the process of my case.

    I’m not able to read the number I need to use for logging in as it’s so small in the email I received, so I will have to try and print it off and see if I can read it that way. If not I’ll have to call the lady in a few days and see if she knows the number. Either way at least I know the company has finally done their part and now it’s just a matter of waiting for the authorization before I can make an appointment with the Mexican consulate in Vancouver.

    I don’t have to be in Mexico while this is happening, but I would love to be able to get the authorization before going back to Vancouver. I have a month, so I’m hoping they can get it done in this month ! If not I don’t know if I would go to Texas for a few days and see if I could come back and wait a bit longer, or just go home and wait there. I would have to think that part through, but for now at least I know progress has finally been made.

    A few months ago I talked about the decision made to take away cyclist Lance Armstrong’s seven consecutive Tour de France titles. Lately I’ve been reading about how he has been considering coming clean and confessing that he used performance enhancing drugs to help him win his seven consecutive Tour de France titles. It’s just a shame that after denying this for so many years and finally seeing people lose faith in him that only now he has decided to come clean.

    It’s a real shame because I remember how much of a story this was before hearing about someone overcoming cancer and still being at the top of their sport, winning such a grueling competition, that most people who have always been super healthy could never do, year after year after year. Of course no one is perfect and we all make mistakes, but all these stories about some athlete who achieved so much in their sport, who was adored by fans, to be caught cheating, it’s a major let down for so many people.

    And as some former baseball players are finding out, cheating is not getting them the places they originally wanted to go…. the hall of fame. And while many of these players still proclaim their innocence, there is obviously compelling evidence against them if they are being denied trips to the hall of fame in spite of what otherwise were remarkable careers. The main lesson here is that using any type of performance enhancing drug is wrong, and while it clearly helps athletes in terms of being even better, at the end of the day it’s cheating…. no matter how many others are doing the same thing.

    And one day all of these people will have to face the music for the decisions they have made, and I have a feeling most of them will be regretting them a lot. It can’t be too much fun being Lance Armstrong right now, and some of the baseball players, even faced jail time over the whole thing. So while people can put on a show and impress so many fans around the world for many years, eventually the truth will come out and these people will be labelled frauds, and not only will they come back down crashing to earth…. they will be buried by history as frauds and I can’t imagine that’s how anyone wants to be remembered.

    And while I don’t think everyone in the general public should be going out of their way to humiliate these people, they’ve already suffered enough of that, certainly the people have their right to share utter disappointment and pain because as fans they’ve invested so much of their time and money into following their favourite athletes, and to be let down in such a big way, they have a right to feel that way. However I would say just let the history books judge these cheaters and the athletes themselves will be left to clean up the pieces of their broken life of shame.

    And all society can do to avoid these huge disappointments is to educate people at a young age, and continue to educate them as they grow up. That using any sort of performance enchancing drug is wrong. And if someone is still stupid enough not to understand this, or still wants to try and cheat and amaze people with their fraudulent talents, they can do so at their own risk….. though I certainly hope all of those losers are caught and roasted for their deceptions ! For the next question:

    What are your thoughts on performance enhancing drugs in professional sports ? Should the athletes who use them be punished more severely and banned from Hall of Fame consideration ?

    I will leave you all with some of the pictures I took from the other day. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Wednesday, bye for now.

  • Report # 960

    Last night was the first time in probably five nights that I didn’t sleep with two pairs of socks on. While I still used my jacket, I didn’t have any trouble staying warm like some of the previous nights. On Tuesday it ended up raining quite a bit but it was at least 15 C (60 F) so it didn’t feel too cold. After running at Fundidora Park I headed home and had a shower and then went downtown and toured the metropolitan museum of Monterrey.

    It was a small place with just a couple of rooms, but I actually spent a long time in the second room as there was so much to read. The first room was all about paintings from some artists from Monterrey so I went through there pretty quickly, but the second room was full of history from the city’s beginnings to modern times, so it was very interesting. There is an art museum as well and I definitely have plans to check it out, maybe on Friday.

    In the afternoon I went to have lunch at VIPS which is just like a simple restaurant which is run by Wal-Mart in Mexico, though it’s not usually inside a Wal-Mart, or anywhere close to one. I got a discount card for 20 % of next visit, all the way up to 50 % off for the fifth visit, so I’ll have to return at least a few times this month. Afterwards I walked to El Globo and picked up a frappuichino and some donuts and walked to the metro station and headed home.

    Yesterday I ran once again in Fundidora, the fifth day in a row, and then I headed home, had a shower, and walked up to the Galerias mall. I had lunch at the Japanese restaurant Wok and it was great as usual. I had some miso soup and sushi with octopus and rice. Afterwards I went to Cinépolis and watched Words, about a struggling young author who finally finds great success with his newest book, but the problem is he didn’t write the book himself, he just found all of the pages and stole the idea word by word.

    Speaking of writing I finally finished typing up the story I had written in Spanish last summer. I added parts to the last chapter to make it a little more detailed and interesting, but now it’s definitely all finished and typed up. It’s the first story I wrote in Spanish, and I have to say it’s much, much, much longer than any of the 50 plus short stories I posted on Xanga. Seeing as I really don’t enjoy writing stories I’ll probably just post one on here sometime this year, but not for a while !

    After I picked up a Frappuichino from Santa Clara and walked home. It was so nice as it was super sunny and 18 C (64 F) and it felt so nice and warm. I believe the cold spell is over here for the next few days and it will be over 20 C (70 F) for the next few days. I really have to spend less money, because even if I was working I would be going over my limit. The thing is though once I am working I won’t have all of this spare time so I’m sure I’ll be spending less. I talked to the lady from Teleperformance on Tuesday morning and she told me there was one form of the company’s missing but that they would deliver my documents in the next few days.

    I’ve heard this all before, so I just hope they get them in ASAP. She told me something about sending me an email, so if I don’t have an email by tomorrow, I’ll definitely be calling her in the afternoon to see what happened. I talked to my parents last night by skype and I believe I’ll be talking to my grandmother and aunt tomorrow. The movie that I saw really got me thinking about plagiarism and how serious of an offense it truly is.

    Obviously there are different ways to plagiarize and in many ways the results of that plagiarism wouldn’t be as serious, though in the end the person who plagiarized will have to live with the fact for the rest of their lives that they cheated. I don’t know about most people, but I think that would be an absolutely horrible thing to live with. There are different ways to plagiarize and the reasons are completely different as well.

    In the movie the author did so because he was so blinded by his own desire to get a book published and become a success that he really lost track of the true principles of writing. In that case seeing as in the movie the book was a top seller, the young man claiming to be the author would have received millions of dollars, while the true author of the book never received a penny. This is an extreme case of plagiarism and I would say if a situation like that happened, the person should probably go to jail for fraud for a little while.

    I remember how much effort some teachers in highschool and university spent on the students trying to hammer down the point not to plagiarize. In one English class, the teacher actually gave us an exercise to practice plagiarizing some sentences so we would really be 100 % sure what was plagiarizing and what wasn’t. On my essays or assignments I always made sure I had my references down, even the ones I used almost nothing from. It’s certainly better to use too many references than not enough !

    And here on Xanga often I use newspaper or internet articles to talk about something, but I’m always sure to credit the journalist and the Newspaper and website to which the article originally appeared. Some people might not think that this is so important on a blog, but to me it is because at the end of the day if the ideas of someone else are used in some way, shape or form, they should be given the credit. When it comes to students who write though, I think there are some students who purposely try to cheat through plagiarism, and others who just end up doing so because they really don’t know what they are doing.

    So as long as this is happening I think schools should continue stressing the importance of students to watch their work, give references where needed, and to try hard at all costs to avoid any forms of plagiarism. If universities aren’t strict enough on this and too many students get through by blatantly cheating, we will have a world filled with people working for certain companies that appear to have no shame in how they got there, and they might even continue to break the codes of honour to get to the top.

    One would think that for a person knowing that they cheated to achieve something would eat away at them for the rest of their lives, but not everyone thinks the same, and I’m sure there are a lot of people out there who just don’t care and this is the problem. These people need to be caught and while society doesn’t have to go all vengeful on them and do whatever they can to rip these people apart, they should at least no there is no place for cheating in this world and there will be consequences to pay for those actions.

    For the next question:

    Do you think enough is done to discourage people from plagiarizing ? Do you have any stories about plagiarism ?

    Today is the first day in months that I don’t have any pictures, and while I’ll probably have some next time, it’s nice to have at least a one day break. I wish everyone all of the best with everything. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Sunday, bye for now.

  • Report # 959

    Hey everyone, I hope that you’ve all had a fantastic weekend and a great start to the week. I didn’t run on Friday as I woke up super late and I wanted to head to the movie theatre. I had lunch at Chilis and then I went to see Lo Contrario al Amor, which was a movie from Spain about a girl and her interesting relationship with a fire fighter. It was a pretty good movie, and I enjoy watching films from other countries. I headed home and had a pretty relaxing evening.

    On Saturday I got myself up at exactly 10:00 am as I had said I would do in my last entry. I went for a run at Fundidora Park and then walked up to Las Galerias and had lunch at Wok, where I enjoyed some wonton soup and lots of sushi. In the morning a friend had told me that she had gotten tickets for a soccer game so I was definitely wanting to go as I had never seen a live soccer game before. I got home from the mall in the afternoon and relaxed for a bit before heading out and taking two metro trains to arrive at the stadium, which was on the campus of UANL (Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León)

    My friend arrived shortly after and we talked for a while and waited for the guy to arrive with our tickets. I paid 350 pesos, (about 28 dollars) This ended up being more than the cheap seats were advertised for on the internet, but we had really great seats at the bottom right by the field, and seeing as it was the season opener and the team here is super popular, it would have been super hard to get tickets through any other way.

    I believe there were over 40,000 people in the stadium, and the home side, Los Tigres de Monterrey, deafeated Los Jaguares de Chiapas 3-0. I was surprised because at the halfway point the game was 0-0 but Monterrey really took control in the second half and sent the home crowd away super fast with three great goals. My friend had lent me a Tigres jersey so I blended in nicely.

    Before the game started there was a show with dancing performers and a big blow up Tiger, as well as lots of fireworks. It was a pretty cool way to start of the season for the team. I bought a coke and a sandwich as popcorn at the games doesn’t seem to be a Mexican thing ! I had to buy some small gloves before the game because I was pretty chilly as it was only around 6 C (42 F) when the game started.

    I figured the climate must have worked in favour of the Tigres as the visiting team was from Chiapas, way in the south west of Mexico, in a much more tropical place, so I imagined those players were a little chilly ! Overall it was a great game and I enjoyed it a lot. Monterrey has another professional soccer team called the Rayados, but seeing as I got the chance to go to a Tigres game first I will end up rooting for them.

    It was a great experience and it was amazing to see just how passionate the soccer fans were here and how happy they were watching their favourite team. It will really be wonderful to see another game in the future ! Yesterday I had a pretty lazy day as I just ran at Fundidora and headed to Cinépolis to watch Ruby Sparks. While it was a very weird movie, it’s cool watching movies like that as if everything in movies was 100 % based on real life they wouldn’t be so interesting.

    I got home a little after 4:00 pm and that was pretty much all I did for Sunday. I talked to a friend in the evening and she said she wanted to get together today, so we made plans. I woke up this morning at 9:00 am and went for a run at Fundidora and then headed home and had a shower and walked up to Las Galerias to meet her. We talked for a while and we had lunch at Las Alitas before going to see Jack Reacher. I really didn’t want to see a Tom Cruise movie, as I hadn’t seen one in almost seven years, but I will admit the movie ended up being a lot better than I thought, and I would be lying if I said that I didn’t enjoy it.

    Afterwards we just talked and walked around the mall and in some stores for a while. I bought a Tigres shirt and my friend bought a dvd for a show she likes. I walked home, trying to call the lady from Teleperformance, but she didn’t pick up. Tomorrow I will definitely be trying to call her throughout the day as I really want an answer as to whether or not they’ve delivered my documents to the migration institute yet. So I better get that answer tomorrow.

    It’s warmed up here over the last few days as it’s been sunny and around 15 C (60 F) I believe it actually felt warmer outside under the sun than it did inside the houses. The nights are still cool, but certainly not so bad like last week. From what I’ve seen it will continue to warm up over the next few days, so it looks like this cold spell is over ! So in the last few days I’ve been doing well with getting up early, and tomorrow I’ll be continuing with that and seeing about visiting some museums in the city. For now that’s all I have, so for the next question:

    Do you have a favourite sport to watch ? What is your favourite team ?

    Seeing as I ended up going to the Tigres game I took some pictures, so it looks like I wasn’t able to go an entry without photos yet. I will leave you all with some pictures from the game. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Thursday, bye for now.

  • Report # 958

    It is cold here !!!! The last two nights I’ve slept in two pairs of socks, pants, and a long sleeved shirt, well with my jacket last night. The high the last couple of days was 6 C (42 F) and at night it was about 5 C (40 F). When a person is outside with a jacket and gloves and walking it’s really not all that cold, but when the house has no heat it’s absolutely freezing. From what I’ve seen the next couple of days will be slightly warmer, but nothing a lot warmer until next week.

    I will survive, but it’s definitely chilly ! On New Year’s Day I headed out and saw that a lot of the stores were closed. I went to the Las Galerias mall and there were some stores and restaurants open. I ended up eating at a buffet place called Sirloin Stockade. I thought the place was pretty amazing as it had almost everything. There was soups, some Mexican food, sushi, pizza, pasta, salads, fish, meat, ice creams, cakes.. almost everything.

    I had two plates of food and tons of desserts and I didn’t even get to try everything I wanted. Of course I was super stuffed after, but it was a great meal to start off the year. I went to Cinépolis on Wednesday and I saw Here Comes the Boom. While it wasn’t such a realistic movie, it was super funny and entertaining so that was the main thing. As well it sent an inspiring message, so overall it was a great movie.

    After my run yesterday I just came home and had a shower and walked up to Super Salads and that was pretty much it for the day. About the only heat I felt was from the hot shower that I dad.I have done my 10 km each day so far this year, but I believe that I’ll be taking today off. Not only is it super cool like the previous days, but it’s very wet outside, and it just wouldn’t be too much of an enjoyable run. I’ll definitely be going tomorrow though.

    Seeing as we’ve just started off a new year and I haven’t talked exactly how I’ve been feeling lately for a while I thought today would be a pretty good day to do that. My days have been kind of boring. I’ve been staying up way too late at night and not getting up until after 11:00 am…… the odd day not until after 12:00 pm. I know this is not good and I really should not be in bed past 10:00 am. It’s just seeing as I haven’t had any real reason or motivation to get up early, so I haven’t.

    Whereas last month I was almost always out of bed by 10:00 am, so I need to get back to that. Staying up past 2:00 am until 3:00, 4:00, or even one night past 5:00 is not only ridiculous it can’t be that great for me. Last month I was spending more time going to places and taking pictures, though now it’s gotten to the point where there isn’t so many more places that I can go and do that. I know there are a lot of museums that I haven’t checked out before, so I really should do some of that.

    Some days I hang out with people, but I need to be doing more of that as I’ve spent a few too many days alone, and that isn’t good for me either. I believe on Sunday I’ll be heading out with someone, so at least I have something planned. Ultimately it comes down to the fact that I’ve had basically five months of holidays. The saying too much of a good thing is definitely true here, as after awhile it just becomes boring. I will be calling the lady from Teleperformance on Monday, and I seriously hope that by then they will have handed in my documents to the migration place.

    That’s all they have to do and once they have done that then it just comes down to waiting, but the longer they take holding on to my paperwork and not getting it submitted, the longer I’ll have to wait, and I’ve already had too much time off. So until I talk to the lady from the company and find out more about this, there will still be a lot of things I don’t know, and well probably after I talk to her there will still be things I don’t know, but just knowing that it’s done will make me happy !

    I planned on coming to for two years now and I have put everything I could into this plan, so to not have things work out would be devastating. While most people will never understand why I even want to to do what I’m doing, I’ve always felt it was the best thing for me right now and that is why I’ve been doing it. Once I know that things are progressing and have a better idea of what is happening I think I’ll feel better about the whole thing.

    It will be great to head back to Canada for a while and see my family and of course pay multiple visits to Tim Hortons. So right now instead of worrying about the future and thinking about potential negative things that might never happen, I just have to stay patient and positive. And I can make my own days better here. I realize that most people are working or going to school, so I won’t be able to spend everyday with someone, but I can certainly get myself to bed at a much more decent hour and getting up earlier and doing a bit more to make my days more exciting.

    The weather will warm up and the sun will come out again and there are certainly some great museums and a few other parts of the city that I can head out and enjoy. I will not just continue to allow myself to sleep these ridiculous hours and get myself depressed over stupid things. So I will make a pledge that tonight I will be in bed before 2:00 am and up tomorrow morning by 10:00 am. And starting next week when the places are open I will check out a couple of museums and take some more pictures, just getting back to enjoying things.

    I will definitely call that lady from Teleperformance on Monday and I will bug her until I know my stuff has been submitted. And once that is over with then it will just be a matter of waiting and making my appointment with the Mexican consulate in Vancouver when I’m able to. I’m still healthier emotionally than I was a few years ago, so that is why it’s extra important for me to take these steps and avoid allowing myself slip back to where I once was and get all depressed and miserable. I know what I have to do, so the power is in my hands to stop this from happening.

    Physically I think I’m in the best shape of my life. Today will only be the third day since December 19 that I haven’t run my 10 kilometers in Fundidora Park. It would be great to have an opportunity at doing the Vancouver Sun Run this year, as I’m super confident I would shatter my record from the previous two years. I would certainly like to be more flexible and do a little weights, but that’s ok, I can’t take care of everything at once.

    I need more fruit that’s for sure One of these days I’ll walk up to the market and buy some strawberries or something, because in terms of eating fresh fruit since I’ve arrived in Mexico, I’d have to give myself an F. And eating healthy is something that’s super important in terms of fighting depression, so it’s something I need to work on ASAP. Thinking about the past I know I’m doing much better these days. It’s been two years since I’ve taken anti depressant pills, and in that time I’ve truly embraced running, and it’s really become a part of my life.

    Of course there are always more things that I can do to help myself, if I keep on the track that I’ve been going on, and get past my bad habits of the last few weeks, while making a few small adjustments, I think I can really be doing great. Ultimately the power to make changes that can benefit our lives, lie within ourselves, so we just have to have the power to do them. I’ve always thought that anti depressants do help a person, but if a person is doing nothing for themselves aside from taking the pills, they really won’t see a lot of improvement.

    And to anyone who is truly going through rough times, there are always friends and family members who can be trusted to talk with, and if needed, counselors are wonderful as well, as they have certain skills to help people that your friends and family members might not have if it gets to a more serious point. I just want to encourage everyone who is struggling to hang in there and do something for yourself. Do something that will make you happy, and don’t let yourself get into bad habits that will only make you less happy.

    So let us all make 2013 a year that we can avoid doing the things that harm us and doing what we can to live healthier and happier lives, emotionally and physically. Obviously some days will be tougher than others, but if the effort is being put in, a positive attitude is shown, and you are surrounded by good people in your lives, the sky will be the limit, and that’s how it should be ! For the next question:

    How are you feeling about your life right now ? What are some positive changes you can make to improve it ?

    I will leave you all with some pictures from Chipinque Park here outside of Monterrey in the mountains of the city of San Pedro. This concludes all of the pictures I have taken in Mexico, so unless I get taking more soon I’ll finally have some entries without posting any. At the very least I’ll have one, which will be a nice break for me. I wish everyone all of the best with everything. Take care and I’ll talk to you all on Monday, bye for now.