Apr. 16th, 2012 01:35 am
kawehilani: (Harry Potter)
AurorPixie5149 ;)

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kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Almost two weeks since my last update here. A week and a half since the Russian presidential election - and I'm still feeling like a duck in a thunderstorm.

Of course, I knew there would be violations and all sorts of incidents during the election day, but I wasnt't ready for the scale of the violations. None of us was ready, in fact. For example, I was a member of the local election committee with a decisive vote; according to the law, I could be suspended (which happened right before the ballots count), but I couldn't be removed from the voting premises (which happened half an hour after my suspension). I tried to remind the chairperson of the law, but all I got was a police escort to the door. I must admit I wasn't even surprised: the chairperson had been acting funny the whole day, anything slightly out of the ordinary momentarily caused her to almost panic and freak out, and she deliberately removed every independent observer by midday. I was quite surprised I lasted almost until midnight!

And the worst part of it is that it wasn't me being tremendously unlucky: most independent observers reported similar violations on other voting stations in St Petersburg. In Moscow, the situation was much calmer, don't ask me why.

And, of course, the Central Election Commission reported that no substantial violations happened during the election.

But, on the bright side, I've met lots of wonderful people among the volunteers, and we're already discussing our possible actions in the future: preparation for the upcoming gubernatorial election, for example.

Well, enough of the election, I have happier news :) I've finally finished my Active Spanish course on Livemocha (¡felicitaciones a mi!), and I'm thinking of watching a TV series in Spanish. I've already found a promising TV show - Toledo: Cruce de Destinos , a Spanish historical drama. I've also started a Swedish course on Livemocha :)

Came over a nice recipe for apple strudel on Livejournal; I rarely use recipes found on the Internet, but the recipe seemed really... cooker-friendly, you know, so I tried it. The result exceeded my expectations, honestly. Cooked it for the second time today, for a late evening tea with Olga, and she approved :) Olga also brought me a small packet of Darjeeling, my favourite black tea. It's really rare around here, so now I'm feeling really happy :)

And I'm going to Moscow again, on Friday evening, for a week or so. Cannot wait to see my family and Smiley :)

And right now I'm going to make myself another cup of Darjeeling and watch yesterday's Body of Proof. Yay!:)
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Last summer my friend Lio (it's her nickname, of course) and I travelled to Karelia, a Northern Russian republic famous for the beauty of its nature. I'd been dreaming of going there for years, so I didn't even think twice when Lio suggested spending our vacation there. We purchased a one-week tour for the first week of August. I still have mixed feelings about the tour: on the one hand, we had a really good guide and visited a number of sites in Karelia; on the other hand, we only got 1-2 days at each location, and to say it was too little would be a gross understatement. But at least, now we know what places are worth revisiting and staying for longer.

The place I've been longing for ever since returning is the Solovetsky Islands (Solovki) - an archipelago located in the White Sea. It's a UNESCO World Heritage Site most famous for the ancient Solovetsky Monastery. It was also the site of the infamous Solovki prison camp from 1926 to 1939.

And it's also a very, very beautiful and tranquil place. We only stayed on the Bolshoy Solovetsky Island for 1.5 days, and only saw a small part of it, but on our only evening there I was lucky to take pictures of a stunningly beautiful cloudless sunset.

+20 )
I really, really hope I'll find a way to go there for two or three weeks this summer.
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
As usual, stayed up all night trying to meet another deadline. I still dislike TRADOS (mostly because I have to learn as I go, in the process of using it), but sometimes it helps enormously.

So, I went to bed at about 2 p.m., slept for several hours, and then crocheted for a while, watching Agatha Christie's Poirot. This TV show never ceases to amaze me: I was quite astonished to see Adam Carter (Spooks), Mrs Hughes (Downton Abbey), and 2nd Lt Bush (Hornblower) all in one episode! It was S09E02, Sad Cypress, and it was amazing. Funnily enough, the next episode I watched (The Hollow) featured Megan Dodds, another actress from Spooks - she played Christine Dale, CIA representative-turned-Mrs Matthew Archer.

You do know that popular joke about "starting a new life on Monday", don't you? OK, I'm going to start a new life on Sunday :) This Tuesday I went to a friend for a cup of tea. I knew she'd been attending training sessions in saberfighting (it's Star Wars-style artistic fencing) since autumn, and I've been thinking about asking her the details. So I asked. And, as a result, on Sunday I'm going to my first training session. Hope I'll like it :)

And now it's time for a little meme :)
Read more... )
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Arrived to St Petersburg an hour and a half ago. The trip was really good: I started and finished a translation for my favourite clients, I caught up on almost all the on-going TV shows I'm watching, and I read 20+ pages of L. Neil Smith's Lando Calrissian and the Star Cave of ThonBoka. I also tested mobile Twitter, and it worked :) (Both my Nokias are slightly outdated and not really suitable for surfing the Net.)

The train I usually take arrives at 4.40, and the metro only opens at 5.35 or so, so I normally go to a Coffee House (yes, we have a coffeehouse franchise under this name :)) located across the street from Moscow Railway Station. Coffee House isn't among my favourite chains, it's no match for The Ideal Cup (another local chain) or Starbucks, but the quality of coffee differs significantly from one coffeehouse to other, and in this one, the double cappuccino is really good. Oh, and they have nicely located power sockets - after an 8-hour journey, my netbook needs it as much as I need my cup of coffee ;)

I also finally figured out how to check-in on foursquare from my netbook :) Turns out the reason why I wasn't able to check-in before was that foursquare had had my location wrong: when I registered, I gave my location as 'St Petersburg, Russia', and foursquare altered it to 'Sankt-Peterburg, Rossiya' for no apparent reason - and, subsequently, was totally unable to understand where I was!

Looking forward to a very, very, very long day: I'll need to shop for food, call my district election commission (they should have approved me as a member of a local commission by now - or rejected), and pack my 18-century dress and deliver it to Olga, who's going to Moscow this evening and has volunteered to deliver it to a friend of mine who's going to a ball next week and needs a dress :) Hopefully, my dress will suit her.

And now I'm going to drink a second double cappuccino, finish another episode of Poirot, and go to the metro - and home! Yay!:)
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
It's been five days since my last update, so I guess it's time to write something.

I'm still staying with my family in Moscow - working, watching TV shows, playing with Smiley. Tomorrow I'm going to a Caravaggio exhibition in Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts with a friend, we've been planning this for some three months now. So we're really looking forward visiting the exhibition tomorrow!

A bit of unpleasant news from St Petersburg: last night there was a major accident in an adjoining house (like the house I live in, it's a five-storey apartment block built in the second half of the 1960s). According to Fontanka.Ru, the city's news agency, a heat pipeline burst underground, and there was a 20-meter fountain of hot water. As a result, two cars went into a sinkhole and had to be pulled out with special vehicles, and the tenants of ten flats will have to repair their windows which were damaged by the bursting water (the city authorities promised to reimburse the damage, though). And the tenants of 31 house (all apartment blocks, no less than 100 flats each) were left without hot water and central heating for the whole day - and it's still -15°C during daytime and even colder at nighttime. Ouch. It's, like, the fourth accident with heat pipelines near my house this winter.

Luckily, I had a 90-litre Thermex water heater installed in my bathroom when there was a capital repair in my flat. Now I'm thinking about buying an oil radiator.

And now I'm going to watch yesterday's Alcatraz. By the way, does anyone else have a GetGlue account?
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Spent the night on an overnight train from St Petersburg to Moscow. No sleep, of course, but I finally caught up on Pan Am, watched pilot episode of Touch, another episode of Poirot, and new episodes of Law and Order: UK and Alcatraz. I also finished first season of Star Wars The Clone Wars - despite my strong dislike for the prequels, I enjoy the cartoon series immensely. And after all, of the three major reasons I don't like the prequels, one reason is completely absent from the cartoon, the second hasn't showed yet (and there's a good chance it won't show at all), and the third can be treated as a genre feature :)

I was quite surprised to discover that it was colder in Moscow than in St Petersburg - it's normally the other way round, as St Petersburg is located farther to the north.

Smiley, my Yorkshire terrier, was, as usual, besides himself with joy when I arrived :) I slept for several hours with him on guard, woke up around 8.30 p.m., helped my sister with her English exercise (she's obviously progressing!), ate grilled fish, and now I'm going to watch yesterday's episodes of my shows (including Ringer - oh, do I miss Ringer!), with Smiley sitting in my lap :)
kawehilani: (Work)
There is a translation agency I've been working for since October (let's call it M for future reference).

For the first three months, they only sent me translations once in a while. Since the beginning of January, they adopted a new habit: now they normally send me translations on Friday evening and ask me to do them by Monday.

This week, they sent me a 5-page translation (the one I mentioned in my previous post, actually) on Thursday, and I thought, Oh, maybe this week my Friday evening will be mail-free!

And guess what? They've just sent me two new translations to do by Monday!


But then, I really, really need a new wardrobe for my historical dresses :)
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Today's a very important day in my city: 68 years ago the Siege of Leningrad was lifted. I went to the Piskaryovskoye Memorial Cemetery where over half a million of civilians and soldiers who died during the siege are buried - it's customary to bring flowers to their graves on September 8 (the day the Siege began in 1941), January 27, and May 9 (Victory Day in Russia). Some of my relatives are buried there, too.

After that, I went to Yabloko's office and filled out an application for the position of a member of an election committee. I've no idea if any good will come out of this, but it certainly beats sitting still and doing nothing, and I'm way too annoyed at the authorities for treating us honest citizens of the country like... hamsters.

And after that, I went to my friend Olga's place, and we drank a bottle of white wine and watched yesterday's episode of The Finder. I must admit that I enjoyed the previous two episodes more, but the characters are still very nice and interesting.

And now I have to translate five pages (deadline: tomorrow!). Ouch. Maybe I should start with making myself another Starbucks mug of hot black coffee.
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Winter has come! Snow and frost (-15 to -20 Celsius), at last. Lucky me, working from home and not having to go out in the cold twice a day :)

Watched new episodes of White Collar, Southland, and Royal Pains. White Collar was the best, as usual - I really enjoyed Read more... ) And as for Royal Pains, I really miss Boris - he was my favourite character during the previous seasons. I hope Campbell Scott didn't just quit the show!

Found a new good TV show: Bomb Girls, a six-part Canadian mini-series about girls working at a munitions factory during World War II. It's not unlike the British Land Girls, but it's far better and more gripping. I definitely recommend it to anyone interested in WWII.

I also decided that my life has become a little boring, so tomorrow evening I'm going to register as a observer for the upcoming presidential elections. What's even more exciting, there's chance I'll be not merely an observer, but a member of a district election commission. Wish me luck :)
kawehilani: Matt Bomer as Neal Caffrey in White Collar. For different TV shows (TV)
[personal profile] themadmermaid has mentioned Alcatraz in one of her posts, and I added it to my to-watch list and then downloaded the first two episodes without really planning to watch the series anytime soon.

But... I've just watched the pilot and I'm already watching the second episode and looking forward to watching the next one tomorrow! I can't say the show is brilliant (not quite my genre, actually), but it's gripping enough, and I like the characters. One thing that bothered me in the first episode, though, is that Read more... )

Oh, and it's nice to see, once in a while, a show set in a city different from New York and Los Angeles :) (IMDb says it was filmed in Vancouver, for the most part. All the same, a nice change of scenery.)

I also noticed that the show shares the same producer with Person of Interest - another show I'm enjoying these days.
kawehilani: (Looking down)
1. Reply to this post, and I will pick five of your icons.
2. Make a post (including the meme info) and talk about the icons I chose.
3. Other people can then comment to you and make their own posts.
4. This will create a never-ending cycle of icon glee.

From [personal profile] deathgaze:
Read more... )
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Another Skywalker)
Katya came to my place in the evening, and we made mulled wine (first time I was using white wine for it, and it was actually very good, although I'm still a red wine fan :)) and watched A New Hope in the classic Soviet dubbed version of 1990. A New Hope still remains the only Star Wars episode to be dubbed on a really professional level - the art of dubbing seems to be lost forever with the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Accidentally, A New Hope is the only episode of Star Wars I watched on the big screen - it was a special event hosted by the Cinema Museum in Moscow, back in the times when I was studying German Philology at Moscow University. April 2007, to be exact.

Meanwhile, found a great article on Death Star PR: Star Wars Characters React to the News of George Lucas’ Retirement. No idea if he's actually retiring, but I nearly laughed my head off reading the article and definitely recommend it to every fan :)

For those who remember my question about the pronunciation of Temperance Brennan's middle name: I asked Kathy Reichs on Twitter, and she replied that it's pronounced as day-see :) Yay for Twitter!

And speaking of Bones - just read in the omniscient Wikipedia that new episodes of season 7 will only be released in spring. The reasons are understandable, but I'm going to miss the show - I do like the books more, but the series is so lively and enjoyable.
kawehilani: Matt Bomer as Neal Caffrey in White Collar. For different TV shows (TV)
Spent almost the whole day sleeping, fighting a headache, and catching up on TV shows.

Read more... )
And I'm still listening to John Williams' score for Star Wars. Since I disliked the prequel trilogy completely and watched it for the second and last time in April 2007 (isn't Livejournal great? Of course, I know the exact month and year only because I recorded it there!), I only listened to the music from the movies once or twice, and it was quite some time ago, too, so I've completely forgotten just how awesome Duel of the Fates was. It's easily the best composition from the prequels - I almost wanted to re-watch them. But instead, I'm looking forward to watching A New Hope with a friend tomorrow evening :)
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
There's a question that has been bothering me for some time now :)

After watching six seasons of Bones I wanted to read Kathy Reichs' novels and bought the first book. I liked it much more than the TV show, by the way - the Temperance Brennan in the book was more human-like and agreeable than the Temperance in the show, and I liked the way Ms Reichs was describing the process of crime solving.

And here's the question: the protagonist's full name is, according to the books, Temperance Daesee Brennan. How would you pronounce the middle name? Would it sound like daisy, or would it be pronounced in some French-like manner (with the stress on the last syllable and a bit like Champs-Élysées)?

I tried Googling, but came up with nothing.
kawehilani: For all things Star Trek-related (Star Trek)
Watching Leverage season finale. Yay, they invited Wil Wheaton again!

Love this dialogue: spoiler warning! )

Oh, I do need to return to watching TNG!:)
kawehilani: (Work)
Since I work as a freelance translator, I occasionally send my CV to various translation agencies. A little more than a month ago I sent my CV with a cover letter to a translation agency which was looking for more translators of personal documents. I used to work on a similar position for nearly two years, so I applied. They responded with a letter containing their working conditions and a form for me to fill out, which I did. It was on December 19, and they just informed me that they are actually hiring me.

I'm a bit surprised, frankly - agencies usually ask translators to do a sample translation or two. Of course, they might have contacted the agency I worked for (I mentioned it both in my CV and the cover letter) and get all the information about my translation abilities they needed from them, but still.

Not that I mind, of course - more work, more money. I'm just a bit surprised :)
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Hooray! Now I have the complete John Williams discography on my laptop!

Adding it all to my iTunes library and anticipating several hours of superb music - and some translation work :)

By the way, if anyone has a Last.Fm account, you can find me here ;)
kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
My to-do list for the weekends included the following:

- finishing a project for my work;
- translating at least 75% of a 10-pages text (deadline is tomorrow);
- doing some volunteer follow-up work on the local elections held on December 4 (there were gross violations during the elections, so now a small group of volunteers is trying to collect and organise the evidence, and I'm helping them as best I can);
- washing the floor in my flat (at least in the kitchen and the hallway! I'm trying to get myself to doing it since before New Year!).

Well, it's a little more than five hours before the end of the day, and I only did the volunteer work.

I guess I'll go and make myself a cup of coffee :)


kawehilani: My absolutely favourite SW icon (Default)
Take my love, take my land
Take me where I cannot stand
I don't care, I'm still free
You can't take the sky from me
Take me out to the black
Tell them I ain't comin' back
Burn the land and boil the sea
You can't take the sky from me
There's no place I can be
Since I found Serenity
But you can't take the sky from me...

Firefly Theme Song


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