Wednesday, May 30, 2007


Owwwy I hurted myself. :( Raked my arm across something while I was playing Zelda: Twilight Princess on the Wii.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Initial forays.

So we went into Kalamazoo proper two or three days ago to see what's going on there, and it's actually a fairly cool town.  Pictures and descriptions thereof ensue:

This is a barn that we pass every day on the way to work.  Very pretty.  

The Big Burrito!  This is right in front of our apartment complex, in between a pizza place and a 711.  I keep meaning to go there, but I always forget.  Ah well, plenty of time to investigate.  Any place called the "Big Burrito" must be most excellent.

The exact opposite side of the complex features a weird-looking church.  See?  Weird-looking.  It's actually stranger from the other side, but one must make do.

This is the road (W. Main St) from here to K'zoo proper.  You can see it's getting more city-like: fewer trees, more booze stores.

Inside K'zoo, there are signs like this everywhere, pointing to attractions such as the Institute of Art, the Festival Zone, etc. Very helpful, really, but they'd be more helpful if they actually gave you a sign saying when you arrived, too.

It's a really artsy city - there are bits of art everywhere, abstract and otherwise.  I think this one is in front of the Institute of Art, but I'm not 100% sure.

The library is in a really cool building.  It has purple pillars!  I need to go get a library card soon.

More weird art.  We passed this one three times before I finally decided that it was a message from Colin to photograph the damn thing.

I have no idea what a "Chemical Bank" is.

Cool building.  Looks like a spaceship dock.  Or, you know, an office building or something.

On the other edge of K'zoo (the opposite edge from where we live), it's very hilly, and all the banks are lined with these rocks.  Very attractive, no?

Even the people here are artsy, or at least weird.  This was sitting out in front of someone's house, between the irises and daffodils.

The Kalamazoo 10, a movie theater about a mile and a half from our apartment.  It doesn't look like much from the outside, but the inside is all neon lights and employees in red suits and bowties.  Tickets are $3.  We saw Spiderman 3 and PotC3 here on consecutive days.  

So, to summarize, it's an interesting city, with a really eclectic mix of buildings and street art (there are murals everywhere), and quite a bit to do, once I get settled. Ooh, and there's a Little Caesar's, from which I keep meaning to order pizza. Yum.

It's actually really strange here - everyone is...nice. Seriously. At the DMV (which they call the "Secretary of State") and the post office, all the government employees were competent, efficient, and friendly. Friendly, I tell you! At work, customers are pleasant. Managers are helpful and nice. Really, it's throwing me off. I daresay I'll get used to it, but it's weird, very different from the standard Williamsportites.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Kalamazoo! (or: twelve hours of hell on I-80W)

So, I'm in Kalamazoo, and I've been informed that I must give pictorial evidence of this fact.  To that end, I give you thumbnails to click.  Enjoy.

We left Williamsport around 8am, and I got my first opportunity to enjoy the scenery I'd be looking at for the rest of the day:

Pablo was very helpful, really: he held the directions (he's inside the box, in a pillowcase).

We got into Ohio about four hours after we left PA.  Didn't look too much different at first...

Soon, however, the pretty PA mountains gave way to flat brown ugly fields (and, incidentally, construction, but that's a given in PA, too):

Pablo got out to stretch his legs, as it were, at a truck stop.

Ohio actually has a good racket.  They charged us a fortune to get the heck out of the state.  What do they do with people who can't pay? (Kevin's dad's 
answer: Where do you think they get the tollbooth workers?)

We hit Indiana, at long last, after about four more hours in Ohio.   Alas, the scenery was not much improved.  

Pablo attempts to make a break for it, out of a hole in the right side of his box.  

Weee!  After nine hours on I-80W, we get to leave it.


Fortunately, Michigan did turn out to be much prettier than the past two states.  I had been worried, so this was good to find out.

We spent the night in a cheap motel just outside of Kalamazoo, since it was late and we couldn't move in until Wednesday, then got up bright and early to head into town.  They wouldn't let us move in until after noon, so we investigated the campus (WMU) first, which was a gigantic inferno.  At long last, we made it to...

We had a quick look at work, first.  Huge!

My street!  Claymoor, no "e" on the end.

Kevin weeps with despair as he notes the sun beating down on our apartment and moving van (van not pictured).  His Dad is pleased to have chosen a wide-brimmed hat today.

Our door:

Looking across the parking lot (aforepictured door is to the right).  We have to take a half-flight of stairs down to get to our apartment.

Really crappy picture of the living room (camera is awful indoors).  The apartment is actually a lot brighter and roomier than that picture makes it look.  It's about the size of the old one plus a room and a half (this one has a bedroom and a teensy dining area), and it's currently clean and cool and generally pleasant.

The view from the living room window (we're ground level, quite literally!):