Friday, October 19, 2012

Welcome to Squirrel Hill...

Yes I said it right.  I am officially a new resident of Squirrel Hill.  Squirrel Hill is a burro of Pittsburgh, much in the way there is a China town or Little Italy in most major metropolitian areas.  Except Squirrel Hill has a large Jewish population, in addition to some young professional and graduate students here.  So if you are in need a great coffee shop or Knish, Squirrel Hill is your spot.  Living in a the hills (as I call it...) has triggered some interesting observations too.  I will preface it and say that the places I have lived prior have not had large ethnic populations or much in terms of landscape... ie suburbia MN and semi-rural North Dakota.  Yarmulkes, Torahs and Synagoges (there are 20+) are more common than bibles and traditional Lutheran/Catholic Churches of the Midwest.  On Saturday's this makes for a great game of funeral, wedding, or Sabbath/Shabbat (may not be the most PC but hey, the game was catchy..).  Most of Squirrel Hill is surrounded by a consecrated wall called an eruv.  For those that do not know what an eruv is.. it is a ritual enclosure that premits the transference of objects from one domain to another on the Shabbat that would other wise be prohibited by Jewish Law.  This primarily applies to the the transference of objects from a private domain (home) to a public domain (the sidewalk or street).  A great example would be the use of a stroller.  Some other interesting facts about the area are: Squirrel Hill also has one of the only Kosher Dunkin' Donuts in the country...  I recently found out that the grocery across the street from me is actually a Kosher grocer too.  Sorry Kiel, that means we need to trek somewhere to find bacon.  Beyond this the there are many great bakeries and restaurants too.  The delis in the neighborhood are to die for! The hills are lined with with family owned shops that look like they are straight out of a movie.  Did I mention hills?! Holy nooners.  Rolling hills probably not an accurate description. 

The Squirrel Hill reminds me of San Fransisco meets Boston.  Huge hills with with quaint older homes built at a 80 degree angles.  Cudos to the archeitects of the city of Pittsburgh.  Monday, I went for what was intended to be a run/exploration of my new surrounding...  it ended up being a glorified walk, which resulted in Kathi being lost for a good 30 minutes and a sore set of calves and a gluteus maximus.  Lesson from this... If I do not have an amazing set of gams by the end of my stint in Squirrel Hill it will a great opportunity wasted.  Speaking of the inclines, above is a picture of my new place of residence.  I feel as though this picture does not do the steepness justice.  But the stairs leading up to the house is at about an 80 degree incline.  If there is any ice this winter, I have no clue what I am going to do.  Maybe I'll slide down the railing?! Could be fun.  The residence itself was built in 1880s which has proved to be an interesting endeavour all in its own right. Its beautiful but not user friendly.   I have no idea to hang pictures into plaster and with a boyfriend a 1000 miles away this is turning out to be a frustrating experience.  Thank goodness the room mate situation is working out better.  My room mate has been nothing but warm, welcoming and helpful.  Due to this being my first use of Craiglists (I was a MAJOR skeptic), I am pleasantly surprise at how well it come together. Anyways, through my getting lost, sore calves, and life lessons on Judaism it is starting to feel like home.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

A new year, a new theme, a new team?!

       So after a year hiatus I am back blogging again.  I had high hopes that I was going to be able to blog about my various experiences during nursing school... which I know the Nodak nursing crew will back me up in that there was some note worthy experiences.  From "I have solomonly swear..." to 'Save the tattas' or whatever the shirt was that made Maridee blush; we had some great times/experiences I wish I could have shared.  However nursing school has since come and gone.  The crew has sprawled the nation, procreated, and gotten/getting hitched.  Quite impressive considering we just finished school all of a few monthes ago. 
     As for me, (and most of you that will be reading this know most of this....) I have a significant other who has stolen my heart (I keep asking him to give it back, luckily he won't :), graduated from nursing school, did a quick stint with Target Field and Caribou Coffee, and have now found myself in Pittsburgh working in Cardiology (my dream... well for know..).  My goal for the next segment of the blog (again my intention...) is to post on my new experiences in Pitt... which might mostly consist of my getting lost stories.  Definitely, got lost today.  Ended up 15 miles out of my way in the North Hills of Pittsburgh just because I missed an exit.  Needless to say 2 bridges, 2 freeways, and 25 mins later I arrived at my intended destination.  Not the point but let me tell you driving here is another experience..We make fun of St. Paul in the twin cities.  Come to Pitt, you will think those 'drunk Irishman' were more sober than originally thought.  All joking aside it feels good to be back online, a year later, with a new job and new team (Go Steelers?!)