Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Ghost Hunting

You've all seen those ghost hunting shows with the crazy paranormal obsessed nerds, or the plumbers? That's gonna be me on the 31st/1st. Yes, I am going ghost hunting. Though I'm not sure how it's going to work, exactly.

My friend Nicole and I are planning to take EMF meters in hand and explore some Seattle cemeteries and maybe an abandoned hospital. The part I'm not sure about it the legal-ness part. How late are cemeteries open? Am I allowed to wander into abandoned buildings?

I hope I don't get arrested. I'm thinking I'll see if Nicole wants to do some cemetery sight-seeing and then go to Kell's, the haunted Irish pub for food. And ghost hunting. Because I imagine that ghost hunting goes well with beer. How convenient that there is a haunted pub in Seattle.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Koznek Family Fun Day!

We were supposed to go camping this week but for reasons I am still not clear on but suspect involve my Dad's work we instead opted to stay home and have Koznek Family Fun Week. Though actually it was just 3 days. This is what we did:

Tuesday: Went to the Woodland Park Zoo and saw lions and tigers and bears. And penguins. The zoo has a whole new penguin exhibit/habitat, which is very nice. It would be even better if we'd seen it without the hordes of wailing children. Mom had to rest half way through and missed the bears, on account of her broken foot. Then we ate sushi.

Wednesday: Went crabbing and an ill-tempered crab pinched my index finger and broke right through the nail. I had no idea they could pinch so hard. It still hurts. Came home and boiled the little suckers to death. Satisfying, though I hate eating crab.

Thursday: Went canoeing at the UW and then had dinner at Redhook. The waitress brought my 20 year old sister a beer on accident. We did not correct her mistake and had a very fun dinner.

And that was the end of family fun week.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Travel Adventure Cinema Show! Part 1

Its been (about) a month and a half since I got back to the States and I've been thinking about my trip. It was the coolest thing I've ever done and I still can't really believe I had the balls to travel around Spain for 2 weeks on my own. Not to mention going to Italy in the first place, not knowing anyone else in the program or, say, the language of my host country.

So to balance the coolness of my adventure I have decided to make a lame picture slide show. This part is Rome, where my journey began.

So imagine that you're in a high school auditorium in the mid-west somewhere and I have just dimmed the lights and am beginning my monotone lecture:


The 2 months I was in Rome were the coldest summer weather Rome has had in a decade but I ate cold gelato almost everyday anyway. I do not regret it in any way, even though I gained what feels like 20 pounds.

My favorite monument was probably Castel St. Angelo. You may remember it from Dan Brown's Angels and Demons, which I read in Italy actually. I thought it was entirely ridiculous, especially the bit with the helicopter.

I did not like the Spanish Steps. A man was very rude to me on the Spanish steps when I declined his invitation to a pub crawl. And anyway there was never anything to do there except sit on the steps and watch people. Which is fine until people try to force you to go on pub crawls.

I loved all the old stuff in Rome. Like this place, Just random ruins of a healing temple on the side of the road.

Ok, that was Rome. Full of old stuff and gelato. I would definitely go back and eat more gelato. Time to turn the lights back on and get to class.

Thursday, August 13, 2009


I'm baaaaack. Been back for a month, actually. Getting home took forever though. I almost cried on the second leg of my trip back because the plane was so cramped and I couldn't sleep and I had a headache. I was very disagreeable.

But I'm home now and over my jetlag and I'm even back at work. I work at a Senior Activity Center, mostly answering the phone and chatting with people over 50. Today was kind of slow, so I decided to make a list of things that are Better in Europe than in the US. And after it was done I started feeling patriotic and had to make a list of things that are better in the US than in Europe.

Things That are Better in Europe:

1. Peanut butter. Because in Europe, instead of peanut butter they have Nutella, which is peanut butter with a secret ingredient. The secret ingredient is awesomeness.

2. McDonald's. They are cleaner and friendlier in Europe. I ate at McDonald's more in Europe in 3 months than I have in the US in the last decade and I only felt a fraction of the guilt I do in the US.

3. The Metro. I loved the subways in Europe. They were easy to use and went everywhere. If I was homeless I would live in the subway and ride it everyday because it gives me joy. Slightly smelly joy.

4. Statues. I know we have the Statue of Liberty, but even that came from France. They have so many statues in Europe I suspect that the actual ratio of statues to people is 2:1.

Things That are Better in the USA:

1. Music. In Europe they seem to mostly recycle old US songs. There was much Katy Perry and Beyonce, which I don't mind, only I had been hearing these songs for months beforehand in the US. They get old.

2. Animal control. I lost count of the number of stray dogs and cats I saw in Europe. There were lots. Sometimes the dogs traveled in wild packs that I saw running down the streets at night. There was a cat sanctuary in Rome with about 20 stray cats who lived in some ruins in the middle of the city. I know packs of wild dogs and mysterious cat sanctuaries sound cool, but I always felt bad for the strays. And lots of homeless people used them as props. I remember one blind old man I saw on my way to school everyday who always sat on the corner with a cute blind dog.

3. Ketchup. The ketchup in Europe is brown and yucky. yuck.

4. Buses. They don't go many places in the US, but at least no one gropes you. Not so in Europe. Damn those Roman Buses.

5. Lines. I don't know why, but it seemed like no one in Spain or Italy knew how to stand in a line. Germany was a little better about it. Everyone just crowded to the front in a big group and it didn't matter how long you had been standing there, people kept trying to push in front of you. Literally pushing, like, actually touching you with the intent to propel you forward. Not cool.

But its not a contest. Both places are cool. And now it looks like I have some actual work to do, so, /end blog.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Things I Lost on my Trip

I got lost a lot while I was traveling, even though I made sure to always have a map. I lost other things too. Here is a list of things I lost on my trip:

1. My retainer--Lost in Florence. Probably under my bed in the hostel we stayed at. It was a nice hostel so at least my retainer has a good home now. I got a replacement the first week I was back home, which cost $155. And it turns out my two front teeth had moved, so the new retainer hurt for a month while it moved my giant teeth back.

2. Two right-eye contact lenses--I always lose the right one. Never the left.

3. The heel of my left shoe--I walked until these shoes rotted from my feet. They died a good death though, and are buried in Italy, also known as shoe Heaven.

4. Weight--Yeah right. I wish.