Friday, March 31


Well, I promised photos and here they are (below). Not very exciting yet I'm afraid, but since I still haven't seen much more than the outskirts of the city, and it's been grey and raining, there is definite room for improvement. Now that I have my laptop I should have more photos, more often (and now I sound like a cable news channel!)

Love you all-


(ps. you can click on these images to enlarge them I think)

For Tony

For so many reasons...

My office

I know this is boring but here's a little context. This is were I'll be spending most of my time after all!

It's a bit pokey but the gear is good and I have a super comfy chair with a high back that is fully adjustable (including 'sleep mode').

Texas from the air

These were my first glimpses of Texas. It's pretty dry here right now.

This is somewhere over El Paso, or near there. I keep meaning to ask someone why the place looks like a circuit board but I've never remembered to. I though the same thing last time I flew across America and I've been meaning to ask ever since! Now someone will tell me and the answer won't be half as good as my imagined reasons.

Supermarket Bliss...

The gum isle...actually, this is only part of it. The candy itself is spread across FOUR isles.

Soup anyone? I just like this section because it's pretty...

What can I say....wibble, wobble.

Monday, March 27

I made it through my first week

Hi y'alls (apparently, that's the plural...y'all is singular!). All is well here. I'm starting to settle in. I bought a map of the city but I still have next to no idea of where I am at any point in time. It's like playing those party games as kids where you shut your eyes and get spun around a few times. Stupid circular city with no landmarks. I can't even use the stores as landmarks because they repeat themselves every few blocks.

San Antonio is growing on me, and I still have SO much more of the city to see. It rained soon after I arrived, so everything is looking a bit greener. I'm getting used to the scrubby trees too. There are heaps of birds, including some really big ones! I've even see a few happy looking squirrels outside my office, which made it very hard to go back in and work! I guess I'll get over squirrel watching but not yet! Speaking on animals, I have my eye on a milky grey gerbil at the petshop. He's very cute. I went to visit him again today. Better than the fat hamsters they have because he's awake during the day. We'll see...

As most of you know, I've found an apartment but don't move in till April 14. Bit of a long wait but it gives me time to get together all the things I'll need, since I arrived with almost nothing. I went shopping this weekend for house stuff, lots of fun. For the first time in my life I've written myself a budget AND I'm sticking to it. One of the big department stores here had a sale on Saturday, and most of the house stuff was 50% off, and we also got to redeem $15 off coupons for anything over $ was brilliant. I basically ended up saving more than I paid by shopping in $75 lots. I now have all my bedding (duvet, cover, sheets and pillows) as well as some really soft towels and most of my kitchen gear. I've also inherited some other kitchen gear from some of the other postdocs here, so that'll be a big help. I'm also lucky that all my major appliances are included with the apartment. S'all good.

Work is going well. I'm really enjoying it. Still feel like I'm swimming against the current, but it'll take me while to work out which way the current is going! I'm sharing an office with a lovely guy called Vince (He's from Guam and a darling) who has been working there for years. He's been really helpful and doesn't seem to mind that my workspace already smells like gum ;)

Speaking of gum, my favorite at the moment is watermelon flavoured extra, closely followed by green apple extra (which I think will hit oz soon). I've had to restrict my visits to the candy sections of the shops here (every shop has a candy section, even Bed Bath and beyond - perhaps that's the beyond).

More soon. Love you all. All emails welcome :)


Thursday, March 23

Arrival in San Antonio

I arrived in Texas on the 16th of March after only 3 flights and a pretty good run. There was the usual bumpy bit over the middle, but all good. The plane wasn't very full so I had a spare seat next to me on which to sprawl slightly less uncomfortably. I didn't sleep much though, and the food was terrible. Someone remind me never again to order a hot breakfast on a plane. Blergh...

I did, of course, get selected for all kinds of extra security screening, but my run through immigration was pretty good.

My first impression of San Antonio (through miserable and tired eyes) was that it was very flat, very dry and somewhat industrial. I expected a cowboy to come riding out of the trees at any moment! The trees were all pretty scrubby and in need of rain, and everything had a fine layer of yellow dust (which I now know to be mostly due to the neverending roadworks around here). I didn't really like it, but it's growing on me now ;)

Initially, life consisted of far too much gum and too few squirrels (although I have since seen a few of my furry friends). I now have a happy balance between gum and wasabi rice crackers.

The day I arrived I went to apply for my social security number, and that waiting room was truly a dismal American experience, but you can't do anything here without one (the number, not the experience). After that we went to my FAVORITE place, the supermarket, and although I was dog tired the candy isles brightened me up no end. I even found a good Californian pear cider...yum.

x Jac

So long and thanks for all the cheese

Hello dear friends,

I know, it's been a near eternal wait for the next exciting entry in Jac's blog (or not - I doubt anyone will notice the update!) I've had to let the blog slide for a little while, partly because life got on top of me and partly because I don't have a computer.

Anyhow, I've arrived in sunny San Antonio (notice I didn't say beautiful San Antionio - because it's not). I'm now going to cheat and paste sections of my recent emails on here. however, I'll have the blog back up and running as soon as I get my new spunky laptop - I'm drooling at the mere though of it (although I feel somewhat traitorous because I went with a Sony rather than my beloved Toshiba...but the Toshibas just weren't powerful enough!) I'll also put some pictures up then because I'll be able to get them off my camera!!!