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  • Self-Made

    I did stuff this weekend!

    On Friday night I finally got my favorite fish sandwich: Art Mel's Spicy Dicy with "the works" on raisin bread. Just living the dream.

    On Saturday I ate the other half. I spent the evening binge-listening to this year's Serial while crafting up some throw pillows out of these amazing thrifted cloth napkins.

    On Sunday I weeded out a garden bed and made a compost bin in the hellish rock jungle that's next to the apartment building.

    On Monday my body is not going to be happy. But I'm totally on that farmer's high where a solid day of physical labor, combined with the knowledge of future self-sustenance, is existentially rewarding.

    And on that note - want to hear something crazy? Rabbits produce a second type of fecal pellet called cecotropes. They are manufactured in the bunny's caecum, which contains highly nutritious bacteria that can ferment any undigestible fiber into a tasty little snack.

    So yeah. Rabbits eat self-made granola bars that happen to exit through their own anus. The ultimate sustainably local organism. 

  • Gifts From Gonzalo

    I made it through a category 2 hurricane shortly after my dad survived a massive heart attack. As my brother noted this morning, "The Peltiers are on a roll this month!"

    The 36-hour lockdown was slogged through as the storm raged outside. We had yelling matches through 4 games of Avalon (super fun), watched too much TV before the power went out, and drank out Kings as the floor tiles in reception slowly filled with leaking water. Every so often debris smashed into the building and shaking doors had to be roped shut, but ultimately nothing particularly terrible happened. In fact, the scariest part was being jolted awake by a flood of light and piercing fire alarm at 5 am... and all that meant was the campus emergency generator had been turned on.

    By morning the weather was calm and beautiful outside. Perfect for grabbing a bagel and taking a stroll through the aftermath! Every road was blessed with a new chaotic tree sculpture and every building a fresh coat of pulverized leaves. The air smelled amazing from all of the cracked, fresh wood.

    Wright Hall probably accrued the most damage with much of the roof blown off, broken windows, and large holes in some of the top floor rooms. It's no longer legal to construct buildings with such wide eaves for this exact reason.

    Every tree in our side yard was either broken or yanked clean out. The giant palm that sits in between two houses and a series of power lines managed to fall in the ONLY possible direction where there was a safe, open space to land. Our house was virtually untouched except for a little flooding in the kitchen and my room. And there wasn't even enough water to damage any furniture!

    Finally, there used to be a working mesocosm behind the laboratory buildings... "used to" being the operative words now. You can see how many cinder blocks are still attached to the frame and hanging in the air, while those white buckets in the background are filled with cement. The wind was literally strong enough to move buckets of cement.

    Wind speeds maxed out at 110 mph and most of the island is still blacked out. Our toilet doesn't seem to be running any longer. But I'm alive! And so is my hippo. Nothing quite like sleeping on the ground in an old library for two days.

  • Hurricane Status

    I'm about to be in my very first hurricane! I'm super excited to have a sleepover in the library while eating granola bars, playing cards, and supervising the student group. It's the kind of stuff I used to daydream about when I was little. (Yeah, you heard that right. Making it through a major natural disaster was one of my childhood fantasies.)

    I bought some essentials in preparation, aka candy, cheddar goldfish, and Gatorade. Stay tuned for more updates!

  • The Cristobal Colon

    The Cristobal Colon was a luxury cruiseliner that became Bermuda's biggest shipwreck in 1936. Three decks and 499 feet of boat crashed into shallow coral reefs after the captain misread the lighthouse landmarks on their voyage in. The American Air Force then used the sunken ship as target practice in the 1940s, so it is quite literally blown across the ocean.

    The dive starts around 15 feet, with rolling hills gradually descending to a 65-foot sand pit and shards of shipwreck every bit of the way.

    Although the bulk of the ship is no longer intact, there are quite a few larger pieces in distinct piles spread across 100,000 square feet of seafloor. Eight boilers, two spare propellors, and a bunch of deck machinery lie in wait, while the front hull has been cracked off and tipped on its side. A ton of reef fish hang out in the wreckage and are comparatively fearless to the ones I interact with closer inshore. All in all, one of the best Friday work mornings I've spent in a while!

  • Presence in the Present

    Somebody once told me that a good portion of Bermudians don't know how to swim. I can't find any solid statistic on the statement, but let's face it: no matter how low, ANY percentage of splashing illiteracy here would shock and appall me. They live on an island! Surrounded by the ocean! I would kill any day of the week for a full backyard of Davy Jones' Locker.

    ...Or so I thought. I've come to realize that it's the easiest thing in the world to take your dreams for granted. The longer I live in Bermuda, the less I swim for kicks. I have a million excuses: my 9-5 is on the water, I have other hobbies to fulfill, I don't feel like carting my beach gear 0.5 miles, the sun's too hot, the waves are too big, the palm trees don't bud ice cold champagne and hundos.

    Ergo, last Sunday I woke the fuck up, carted my shit out, and swam like crazy around Whalebone Bay. Just for kicks. It was a wonderful reminder to keep my grass green and my polyps extended, and boy, do I love the ocean.