Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"KleeWyck, Ooh Ha Ha!"

I was looking back through my collection of posts and realized that I never really addressed this question. I mean, I've made reference to KleeWyck a handful of times and I've explained in brevity, but I've never full out explained where it came from and why it's in the title of my blog.

I would like to thank Ember for posing this delightful question and bringing it to my attention.

But, in order to answer what is a KleeWyck, I think that it is also important to answer why I'm a KleeWyck--the two go hand in hand in this case so please, allow me to tell you the story. Sit back, be comfortable, and listen [*cough**cough*]!

It is important that you understand KleeWyck is my Camp name. It's been my Camp name since the summer of 2008 and every year, for the lovely 2 months of summer, it's pretty much all I go by and answer to--and I love it. For some of you, the concept of camp names may be strange, for others, you may be sitting there thinking that it means that I chose this name to go by, but that's not how it works at Camp Mini-Yo-We, no sirry-Bob!

The Naming Ceremony is a very serious thing at camp and the names given are also very serious business. They need to be chosen with care and with a certain knowledge of an individual. I mean, if this name is going to be you, it needs to represent you right? I mean, it's a part of you! My small group leaders named me after having known me for 2 months, learning about my personality, as well as my likes and interests. Then, they did some research to find a good name.

I can still remember my naming ceremony. It was a warm day in August and I was 16. There were 26 of us at NorthWoods--a section of Camp Mini-Yo-We. We were part of the Leadership in Training course [L.I.T.] and we were nearing our counselling time. It was a warm day and we were just loafing about after lunch. As I have my NLS, I was life guarding while some of my friends swam in the lake. We were all waiting for something to happen. I finished my shift, got changed into some clothes and headed into the lounge area to sit in the shade with some others.

All of a sudden, the phone rings. None of our leaders are anywhere so one of us answers it. The room goes quiet. We sit listening to her talk. Then she hangs up and says that we need to get everyone in the lounge in the next 5 minutes before the next phone call--the fun was about to begin. Some of us frantically shout from the steps to the surrounding cabins. It takes a few minutes, but eventually we're all gathered, waiting, expectant. It's a chaos of noise and chatter as we all wonder what's going on. I'm excited along with everyone else and I can feel the blood rushing through my veins as my heart pumps ferociously in my chest.

The phone rings again and we're told a clue and then nothing. Pondering the clue for a few seconds, we discover that we're needed to head to the docks. Rushing across the camp, we run down to the lakeside to find another cell phone waiting. Again it rings and again we rush off to another location. After a few more similar stops, we wind up at Look-Out Point. There we find our leaders--all 8--and our program director waiting somber like behind a fire. We sit on the logs rolled before and wait in silence: the Naming Ceremony was to Begin.

As each person was called forward, their story told and their name given, the excitement continued to build. Everyone was anxious to hear their own name and to learn those of their friends. To add a few, some of my friends got the names: Edel [like the flower Edelweiss], Emelkae [M.L.K], Balou [DISNEY! WOOT!], Little Foot [YAY DINOS!!], Crombie [ohh.. there are jokes here... bahahah], and so many more.

Finally, it was my turn.

I walked to the front, nervous. What if I didn't like my name? What if the story was bad or based off something I did by mistake? [There are names that happen from embarrassing moments...] What if?

I stood awkwardly before my peers. I didn't really know what to do with my hands or what expression to make with my face, but hey, I was nervous!

This is my story:

I am Canadian--PROUDLY Canadian. I love being Canadian. It could be the igloos or it might be Time Horton's. Who knows, maybe even Hockey. Whatever the case, I love my country. In addition, I'm also a writer and I shared a bunch of my written work while at Camp. A famous Canadian Writer is Emily Carr. More famous for her paintings {CLICK HERE FOR GOOGLE PAGE}, Emily Carr spent time with the Aboriginals in British Columbia and a lot of her work stemmed from that time.

While she stayed with them, she received the nickname "Klee Wyck" which means "laughing one." I too am an all around happy character. I'm a laughing one!

As I stood before my friends, my family, my small leaders turned and said, "Rachel, you're name is KleeWyck."

And the chorus around the fire replied, "KleeWyck, Oooh Ha Ha!"

Sunday, January 23, 2011

it's just me down here...

Greetings, readers! I hope that you are some place warm on this blistery and frigid day because I was positive my nose was going to fall off. It's a shame that this wintry beauty is so cruel!

Today has been a little bit difficult as the Internet in my residence is down. Any work that I need to get down, I have to do at the library or elsewhere that I may find wireless access otherwise I'm stuck. Isn't it simply great when Internet services fail during project season? *exasperated sigh...*

Oh well, that's life, I suppose.

Anywho, it's January! We're into week three of the new semester and University life is going swell. The projects are starting to rack up in all of my classes, but I'm developing a plan so that I may stay afloat. As long as my teachers comply and publish the assignments in ample time, I'll be good. As aforementioned, it's cold out and walking across campus sometimes can be a real pain--especially because we have a river that crosses campus and it's ALWAYS windy on the bridge. Always. Talk about a nose killer!

Still, buildings are not too far apart and it takes a max of 15-20 minutes to get from one end of the campus to the other and I'm managing.

I got a new roommate at the beginning of this month and she's pretty nice. I don't know how well she's managing though. She's always skyping with her friends and family from Bangladesh and I feel like she's missing the part in an exchange where you need to make friends. I'm not in any of her classes though so I don't really know how I can help... I can't force her to make friends, eh? Any ideas from you geniuses you?

My courses this semester are pretty much the same as last semester. And for those of you who don't know what I'm taking, I shall tell you! I am in History [called Ten Days that Shook the World] and it's pretty cool... in a weird way since it's about terrible things that happened. I also have English and then French as it's counterpart. That's all I'm saying about the two of them. Next I have Philosophy--which sometimes leaves me with a headache, but it's getting better. And finally, Psychology. This one's my favourite. I just absolutely ADORE the subject material. It's just so fascinating to learn everything fancy-pants scientists have discovered!

And yeah. That's where I'm at right now! Now back to researching I go and I'll see y'all tomorrow!


Thursday, January 20, 2011

we need an awakening

Stop & think for a moment.

Think about your thoughts--the things you may tell yourself on a daily basis. Are they all your thoughts? Are they things that you should be thinking?

I ask that, and some of you may immediately think I'm talking about profane and dirty thoughts, but that's not exactly what I mean.

I'm talking about the thoughts you whisper to yourself in the dead of night. The thoughts that float through your brain when you're alone, lost, and scared. The thoughts that you'd never tell anyone else because they make you sad. Perhaps you've told yourself these thoughts are true over and over again, and maybe by now you believe that. Perhaps you use them to remind yourself of "your place" in life and society. Perhaps... perhaps.

I've had those thoughts, too. I've had these thoughts:

But you know what I've realized? I'm not the one saying them. When I'm lying in bed late at night, my thoughts spinning and these ideas whisper through, they are NOT my ideas. They are the Devil's. They are Satan's. He's been whispering them to me for years and I've had enough. I'm not going to take them anymore. I know for a fact that those are not true [though I know I can be annoying at times =P]. I'm not going to let Satan mess with my head and my walk with God this way. I'm going to stand firm and tell myself His mighty truth.

I was stuck in a rut but now I'm breaking free. Are you?

Friday, January 14, 2011

If Life Were Backwards

Then things would be quite interesting, don't you think?

In the book Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut [which I have to read for English], the main character Billy Pilgrim watches a movie backwards. Don't ask me how because I'm not exactly sure except that Billy is jumping between different moments of his life. It's all rather weird and confusing in the way that some books can be. As I read the backwards movie, I couldn't help but chuckle slightly at the absurdity of the film. I've re-typed the passage below so feel free to give it a read through:

American planes, full of holes and wounded men and corpses took off backwards from an airfield in England. Over France, a few German fighter planes flew at them backwards, sucked bullets and shell fragments from some of the planes and crewmen. They did the same for wrecked American bombers on the ground, and those planes flew up backwards to join the formation.
The formation flew backwards over a German city that was in flames. The bombers opened their bomb bay doors, exerted a miraculous magnetism which shrunk the fires, gathered them into cylindrical steel containers, and lifted the containers into the bellies of the planes. The containers were stored neatly in racks. The Germans below had miraculous devices of their own, which were long steel tubes. They used them to suck more fragments from the crewmen and planes. But there were still a few wounded Americans, though, and some of the bombers were in bad repair. Over France, though, German fighters came up again, made everything and everybody as good as new.

When the bombers got back to their base, the steel cylinders were taken from the racks and shipped back to the US of A, where factories were operating night and day, dismantling the cylinders, separating the dangerous contents into minerals. The minerals were then shipped to specialists in remote areas. It was their business to put them into the ground, to hide them cleverly, so they would never hurt anybody ever again.
The American fliers turned in their uniforms, became high school kids.
And Hitler turned into a baby...

The bolded section is my favourite.

As I was reading that, I couldn't help but think, what if we took other stories and watched them backwards? What changes in their plot would that bring.

So, here's Beauty and the Beast: re-written by me [and yes, I know I've left some things out]:

Image via Google
Belle and Prince What's-His-Name were in love but the castle was under attack. So in order to protect their love, the Prince transformed into a Beast. Then Belle ran away back to the village followed by all the villagers who were angry at not having found the prince. Belle locked herself and her father in the cellar to be safe from the villagers while they rioted outside with the magic mirror.

They released Belle and gave her back the magic mirror before returning to their houses. Belle hugged her father goodbye and then snuck off to the Beast's castle to be with her beloved love. The two are having a grand old time together until the Beast gets hurt fighting wolves to protect Belle. After that, their friendship is gone and Belle is locked in her room. After dinner one night, she sneaks into her room where the Beast finds her and yells at her to come to dinner.

Then Belle is taken to the dungeons where her father appears and tells her he loves her and that she should go back home. So Belle leaves the castle with Philip and goes through the woods back home while Maurice is trapped in the dungeons. Back home, Gaston proposes to Belle who ignores him.

Maurice returns from the woods with his invention and Belle walks through the town while singing, oblivious to everyone else around her.

Meanwhile, somewhere in the woods, the Beast greets a fairy lady and accepts her rose. In exchange, she changes everyone into humans. The End.

Well, that was a lot more interesting than I imagined.

So, if you feel so inclined, I'd love to hear your backwards stories in the Comments!

Things I've learned about France (or at least Normandy)

Well there we go, my second European country. In some ways, very similar to England (a lot of meat and potatoes, fancy churches, pay toilets...