Thursday, 10 October 2013

It's a Dry Kind of Hot

Thursday, 10th October 2013; 15:42
Location: Vancouver Public Library Central Branch, Vancouver BC, Canada
Why: Road Trip!

Okay, so it's not the next day writing even though I said I'd do it. But, here I am at the public library and determined to pound out this post before I head to my night school class in a few hours.

Before I even landed myself back at YVR I was easily persuaded to go on a little excursion with one of my good friends in Vancouver. This rather spontaneous commitment reminded me of when I was traveling in Vietnam and two friends met up with me in two different countries, pretty much on-the-fly. Austin and I tripped out on 'shrooms in Ubud and zipped around Bali with wild abandon. Then, Andrea C and I had a blast climbing the ruins of Angkor Wat in Cambodia and had our toes nibbled at by little fishies.

So I jumped at the chance to go on a road trip down to Arizona for sunshine and pit stops on America's highways.

On 22 Sept, Skooter and I stuffed a duffel bag and backpack with clothes and threw it in the back of Fanny, his sporty Ford Explorer. We also packed some pillows, a blanket, some tools. And an axe and shovel? Yep. "Just in case" said Skooter. I was in tears with laughter. I guess the axe was "in case" we had to murder someone in the desert and a shovel to bury the evidence. Destined for Arizona, we also brought along a fine collection of dried fruit and chips and were off.

We drove down towards Seattle for an obligatory visit to his sister's before making our way through a rainy Washington night drive. As we drove along, we hit Oregon, then into Idaho before I finally pulled the camera out.

This was the scene in Idaho for a very loooong time:

Sometimes the scenery was so, um boring that I secretly wished something would happen where we'd have to take out the axe or something, haha! Instead, we amused ourselves by singing (read: belting) to songs à la 1980's Exposé. It was quite the performance we churned out for "Season's Change". Someone please tell me you know the song I'm talking about!

Finally, when we hit Utah the landscape changed. Hurray!

Mountains! And signs of civilization:

And the obligatory selfie. Isn't my Skootie handsome?

As we continued to drive the landscape changed yet again.

Before I knew it, we were in Arizona. The giveaway? Cacti!

On the drive down, we really motored; reaching our first destination of Tucson in just two days. On the first night, we crashed in the car somewhere in Idaho at a rest stop for a few hours of uncomfortable sleep in our mostly reclined front seats. Skoot's mum was kind enough to book us a room at the Rodeway Inn somewhere else in Utah on the second night where we crashed like a ton of bricks. The next morning, I ate at my very first IHOP. I don't know what all the buzz was about since I found it to be pretty standard fare.

When we finally got to Tucson, I met his mum and stepdad and we spent one night at their house in a gated community reserved for mature residents. The next day, we drove to their other home, a tiny community in Tubac where we relaxed, read and played Word Play for the next week. It was really nice to just "turn off" the brain - their house was like a retreat.

Anyhoo, when we finally left Tubac, the car was now stuffed with new purchases including fabrics for my latest obsession - quilts!  I was anxious to get back to Vancouver as I found the desert heat extremely taxing on my skin, hair and allergies which totally kicked my ass. Arizona - it's a dry kind of hot. And while I LOVE the heat, I couldn't live in this kind of environment - I'd turn into a raisin! However, it did make me long for the hot and humid temps of SE Asia.

We took a different route home and decided to take our time unlike our mad dash driving down. We drove up through Utah, Idaho and Montana before crossing over into BC near Grand Forks.

Along the way, we made pit stops to see some canyons:

This Navajo Bridge in Arizona was pretty cool. I actually got a bit of vertigo looking down from it:

This sign made me laugh:

The American part of the drive home was pretty uneventful until we sped past some highway workers mowing the grass, sending rocks flying in our direction. This caused another crack in the windshield and shattered the side vented window. We were not impressed and by the time we realized what happened, we had already driven too far away.

The only thing that kept the side window from falling apart was the tinted layer on the inside. For some insurance we stopped in a gas station and bought some packing tape.

Skooter patching Fanny up as best he could:

Poor girl...

By now, I was ready to be in Canada. And before long, we were!

Driving along the border in BC's interior reminded me just how much I loved living in Canada's west:

So that was my 12 day road trip with Skooter. Unfortunately, we didn't need to pull out the axe or shovel. **sigh**

Sunday, 6 October 2013

I'm Still Alive!

Sunday, 6th October 2013; 13:19
Location: Blenz Coffee Shop, Denman St. Vancouver BC, Canada
Why: Because I've Been Paralyzed in Denial.

I just re-read my last post and a lump started to form in my throat. Has it really been 9 months since I hung up my travelling boots? I've done a terrible fail by not continuing my stories in "recent past tense" like I said I would. My sincere apologies.

The truth is I've been in much denial since returning back to Canada. Paralyzed really. Suddenly, I felt like I wasn't interesting to read about anymore. My everyday life was not about whatever new travel experience I was having at the moment. Rather, it became a wash, rinse, and repeat cycle of routine. 

After a couple of months playing "house wife" while my Handsome Young Man brought home the bacon, I got myself a job as a Graphic Designer for a womenswear company in April. While it was nice to use my Illustrator and Photoshop chops again, I was terribly unfulfilled with the company - a stuffy environment of 11 conservative, alpha-type females crammed inside a small design studio in Toronto's Leslieville neighbourhood.

And while my relationship with HYM was good, I was silently disintegrating as my travel spirit slowly began to slip away into nothing but a bunch of memories. Dreams even. As if it never happened. I longed to book a flight, any flight; destination Anywhere. My friend Anna had asked me what do I love more, the travel life or life with HYM. It was a dead on 50/50 so you can see how tormented I was.

I framed a series of photos to remind me that my travels did happened:

Examples of why I loved my life with HYM:

In late May, my Travel Soul Sister Anna made a week long visit to see us. I was giddy with happiness at reuniting with one of the most important friends made on my travels. It was great to just relax at the condo and catch up/reminisce about our experiences on the road. I secretly didn't want her to leave but alas her wandering feet were bound for New York for a short stay at her Aunt's before continuing on her world wanderings back to the Philippines to see family.

All smiles at the condo in Toronto:

But the bubble finally burst and in late July, with a heavy heart, I left HYM and booked a flight back to Vancouver. I felt an instant relief when I hit the "Buy Now" button and a lonely sadness at the same time. 

Being on an airplane always fills me with anticipation and excitement:

I always knew I needed to be back on the West Coast after my travels and the original idea was to return to Vancouver in the next two years after HYM finished his apprenticeship in Toronto.

Well two years was just too long I guess and my heart needed to be back here. So here I am. In my West End neighbourhood, enjoying a coffee after a nice run along Stanley Park Seawall. It's a sunny 17 degrees autumn Sunday and I can breathe a little easier knowing that I've found a lovely apartment at Beach Towers - a much coveted area in the West End with an ocean view. Okay, I haven't officially got the apartment yet but I wooed the management staff and they actually took the apartment off the viewing list this weekend so my application can be processed on Monday. Fingers crossed.

The best part is, in 10 days, HYM will be arriving in Vancouver. Surprise! Love is a force of nature and after a month apart, I got back together with HYM. Together, we are going to continue this crazy love journey on Canada's West Coast. And I'm sure we will be discovering more of BC in the coming months. Stay tuned.

Alright, so that was a quick snapshot of the past 9 months and me feeling sorry for myself. But really, I have much to be grateful for. Actually, writing this piece has just given me a little creative boost. And since this is a travel blog, I should be writing about travel related stories. This post counts no?

And I do have one! A recent road trip! But I'll stop now in case you've lost interest.

If you still think I'm interesting, maybe come back tomorrow and hopefully, I'll have some anecdotes on what it was like to go on a 12 day road trip to the U.S. involving an axe and shovel.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Retiring the Passport. For Now. **Tears Up**

Monday, 11th February 2013; 11:12
Location: My kitchen counter, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Why: I need to get these mixed emotions off my chest.

Mixed emotions. This is an understatement right now. Because you see, in what seems like a blink of an eye, my traveling feet have stopped.

In Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Yep.

The Low Down:
I embarked on my worldly sojourn back in May 2011. Twenty one months later, I am back in the city I used to call home before I had moved out west to Vancouver. I never thought I'd find myself back in the Big Smoke but love is a crazy force of nature.

While living in Melaka, Malaysia, my fancy-free heart decided it wanted to learn French in France. And so, I followed the bread crumbs which lead me back to Toronto for a French Long Stay Visa last summer. During this pit stop, I met a handsome young man, albeit controversially (that's another post...).

After months of skyping with said Handsome Young Man, I found myself happily skipping through the streets of Lyon, Paris and London with Him; frolicking in fromage and downing pints at Blues Kitchen in Camden Town. And before I could say "au revoir France; g'bye mate", I am literally knee deep in this white stuff from Friday's snow storm. My expensive red boots are not impressed...

So now, my backpack has retired onto a shelf in the bedroom closet of my fancy new living digs - a box-in-the-sky condo on Toronto's lake front. Am I happy? Yes and no.

Yes because: 
1. I've shacked up with said Handsome Young Man and we are giddy like two college kids.
2. I'm so grateful for being able to travel as long as I have.
3. I can re-connect with my friends in Toronto.
4. I am in the same province as my family.
5. Vancouver is only a 4-5hr flight away.
6. I now have wonderful stories to tell at the next cocktail party I get invited to. (Now accepting party invitations)

No because:
1. I keep thinking about all the places I've traveled to and miss dearly.
2. I could really use the 30+ degrees heat in SE Asia - I'm a terribly wimpy Canadian.
3. I really want to ask for un pain au chocolat avec un café long in French.
4. I wish I could see my family - all of them.
5. I miss Vancouver and lululemon so bloody much.
6. I haven't been invited to any cocktail parties yet.

I used to wake up in whatever country I was in, thinking "Hmm what do I feel like doing today?" And then I would go on doing whatever with a sense of freedom that is now suddenly not there anymore. I'm not sure how I feel about this new circumstance. I feel like I have to wake up from my traveling slumber and rejoin the 'rat race' that I happily left behind two years ago. And it's making me anxious again. This anxiety I loathed so much is swiftly creeping up on me these days - I've only been back a week (have been avoiding changing my location on FB). I'm neither on this side of the world or the other. I feel a bit lost.

I want to hang on to my travels so badly. But at the same time, I'm excited for the possibilities ahead. This is another chapter in my life that I can write with whatever storyline and character I fancy. However, I'm not done with my traveling obsession yet. There are still many stories to share with you, my faithful readers and supporters. The only difference now is I'll be writing them in recent past tense instead of present tense.

The awful reality: Having to retire my passport. For Now:

I am choked at the very thought of having to retire my passport. There are so many stories stamped in these pages that need to be told.

Having said that, please invite me to your next cocktail party. I promise to deliver interesting stories - after a few drinks.

Monday, 14 January 2013

10,000+ Page Views. Wha?!

lundi, le 14 janvier 2013; 21:01
emplacement: 3 ave Albert Einstein, Batiment E, Chambre 302
pourquoi: I just hit 10,000 page views...might as well keep going!

So, I'm a little bit beside myself. Before I packed it all up and stuffed my life into a Gregory Deva backpack, I mentioned to some friends that I would keep a blog of my wanderings.

Well, a few weeks into my 12 month sojourn, my good friend Asmin C messaged why I hadn't started my blog. Henceforth Wanderin' The Globe was conceived. After hours of trying to figure how the heck I even start a blog, I chose blogspot and ran with it.

Along the way, some readers started running with me, commenting as I rambled anecdotes of stumbling around SE Asia and Europe. I had never done much writing beforehand and was unsure how to go about telling my tales on the trails. Alas, I said Feck It, just write!

So here I am, 20 months later and I'm still rambling away. I try to make my million scattered thoughts into a somewhat coherent piece for each post I write. At first, I didn't think much of it as I served this to be a journal of sorts rather than for an audience. What I've learned from this writing is I write most easily from my own actual experiences. It's the only way I know how. I try not to censor myself too much but also remembering not to give all of myself away.

Recently, I re-read some old posts and thought, I have left myself vulnerable in cyberspace. I have literally put my "Heart on My Sleeve" in some of my posts. That's my terrible attempt in saying 'read the post with that title!' It's in the 2011 November thing that has left me rather surprised is I have never received a negative comment (privately or publicly) from a post.

So, I keep on keepin' on. And here's the kicker: I checked the status of my blog for shits n' gigs just now and hit 10, 016 page views. Wha?! Uh-huh. See, this is a big deal for me because I've just been writing and posting pics for fun. I don't even know how to link my own posts!

But I've seen readers come on to this little amateur site from places far far away. From countries my blog has no business being found.

It is humbling.

So to everyone who has read my tall tales or just blitzed through by accident, thank you for reading Wanderin' The Globe!

Or as I would say in my practicing French: "Merci de lire Wanderin' The Globe!"

Um, I'm living in a French Uni dorm room and some dude is blasting Carly Rae Jepson's Call Me Maybe..... What just happened?

Oh right, I like writing tall tales...that are true!

Monday, 7 January 2013

Gear of the Traveling Ninja

dimanche, le 06 janvier 2013; 22:56
emplacement: 3 ave Albert Einstein, Batiment E, Chambre 302
pourquoi: Je vous voulez présenter les essentiels pour la vie du voyageur.

In case Google Translates the above incorrectly or in case I’ve written it incorrectly, “I would like to present to you the essentials for the life of a traveler”

My life as a language exchange scholar with my French host family has finally come to an end. Alas, I packed all my worldly belongings into two backpacks and threw them into the trunk of the family car. Then we solemnly climbed in and drove me out to Villeurbanne, a neighbourhood in Lyon.

After getting myself sorted out at security, I received my keys and opened it to a giant closet; I mean tiny room.

Yep. Tiny. Room. University style. Université Lyon 1 to be exact.

Alors, c’est pas grave. That will be another post. Tonight I am writing from my spacious desk in my tiny room. Without internet. So this will be posted tomorrow when my wifi kicks in.

Actually the size of this room is what inspired me to write this post. Months ago, I had meant to write about my travel essentials. If you recall an old post, I’m obsessed with the weight of my travel gear. And over the past 20 months (!) I’ve become a pro at keeping the essentials.

When I was preparing for Wanderin’ the Globe, the first and most important gear I needed was a backpack. After hours at MEC, I chose my now well traveled yet mighty Gregory Deva 55L. This pack was on sale for $199CAD and designed to fit my petite 5foot (150cm) frame. This pack is near perfect with the exception that it is somewhat heavy when empty – a whopping 2.35Kg (5.17lbs)!

This pack has been around. A few times and counting. You can’t tell but there’s a pair of runners in the top compartment:

So, what goes inside this backpack you ask? Well, the most real estate goes to clothes. However, to minimize this burden, they all get vacuumed sealed in heavy Ziplock bags. This technique saves space and saved me from the stinky fish sauce incident in Vietnam. I believe you can find that post in “Jonesing for the Jungle”. I wish I knew how to hyper link my own work…anyway, it's in the Sept 2011 year section...

All my clothing gear, including two jackets believe it or not…:

For the male readers, this won’t apply to you but for the chicks, this product is better for the environment and wallet. And it’s a Canadian company! Google it:

This two-in-one mirror/brush has been through some rough times that it finally broke ):

Thank goodness, I have a light back-up comb! And every traveler (especially an Asian) needs a ninja style pair of chopsticks:

 The two-in-one is pretty sweet but check out this badass four-in-one. To all the gals and gays who want to keep their nails lookin’ good, this is a must:

As a modern day solo female traveler, I wouldn’t feel complete without my gadgets. They keep me connected with family, friends and capture most of my experiences:

And allow me to carry more reading than I could ever imagine:

Pulling a McGyver when the occasion calls. One luxury I afforded myself before France was upgrading from my degrading Acer netbook to a fancy MBP:

The next four pics are items I cannot travel without. In Malaysia, I met the guy who sits next to the guy that designed the Spork. The Swedes are brilliant industrial designers. Did you know the guy gets one penny for every Spork sold? Probably the smartest Christmas gift I’ve ever requested was my Swiss Army knife – thanks big brother! My travel towel and sleeping bag liner weigh next to nothing and dry faster than I can slice a baguette open with my Swiss Army Swag. The sleeping bag has saved me from creepy crawlies in dodgy beds. Yep.

I’m totally going to plug my friend’s product here. During my pit stop in Toronto before heading to France, I met up with an old friend who makes animal cruelty-free personal grooming products. Check out her products at: and help support the handmade revolution!

Becks, thanks a million for this delicious soap!

When my friend Andrea C joined me in Cambodia, I asked her to bring me one of those reusable nylon shopping bags that tuck into themselves like they barely existed. Well, she did one better by having our good friend Asmin C pass along some swag from one of our suppliers at lululemon.

This lightweight yet indestructible shopping bag is about the size of my iPhone. And it carried my bed linen when I was in Bali:

All these little things along with a few I haven’t mentioned, add up to weight that must go into my main pack and my daypack. And just to completely nerd myself out, here are the numbers:

Total weight of my gear is 19.25Kg (42.35lbs).
However, if I remove the pack weights when empty, I lose 3.35Kg (7.37 lbs) making my actual gear 15.9Kg (34.98 lbs)

You might be wondering how I got these numbers. Well, math does not run in my Asian blood (I know, what?!) And this may not be an essential travel item, but the slight OCD in me travels with one.

This awesome digital scale allows the geek in me to weigh just about anything:

As I reflect on all the shtuff I have with me, I know I can still trim off more weight on the scale. Like do I really need to have 12 pairs of G-strings? But, but they were on sale at Undiz!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Puppies, Teachings and Learnings

mercredi le 2ème janvier, 2013; 14:31
emplacement: Ajuntamente de Roses, Costa Brava, Spain
pourquoi: Parce que je n'ai pas écrit depuis longtemps. And playing catch up.

Leave it to my good friend Andrea C to ask why I haven't written in a while. I love having friends who make me accountable. I have no excuses save for the fact that I have been a little bit lazy. Alright, let me write about shtuff that's been happenin'.

Back in mid November, my host family finally decided on getting another dog. It had been 10 months since their last dog, Vergule (which cutely enough means 'comma' in French) passed away. We piled into the family car and drove 2 hours to a village somewhere in the countryside to see the litter. There, we picked up the latest edition to la famille Dimouchy, a mixed terrier name Pin Up.

Yep, Pin Up.

She looks like a tiny lion with her ginger fur and black markings:

Alice with Pin Up, whom she has also decided to name "Étoile":

It was a joyous day for my host family. Pin Up is so damn cute it almost makes me wanna get one myself. Almost. JP, we'll talk about it...

And in other news, I started my French studies in the beginning of November at the Alliance Française de Lyon, a reputable language school found throughout the western world. My classes run Monday to Friday from 12:30 - 15:30. I look forward to getting on the bus everyday for the ride into the city and immersing in the language although sometimes I am left literally tongue tied from speaking it so intensely. Ironically, I am speaking more French at school than I am at home with my host family. 

Alliance Française de Lyon:

Sometimes during break, I come out here on the outdoor patio for a breather:

I also had the opportunity to put the skills I learned from the TEFL training course I took back in February. My instructor and classmates from that course would have been so proud of me! The TEFL methodology works really well!

So in early December, I agreed to give an English lesson for Alice's split grade 3-4 class at her school. Initially, I was nervous about doing this but after consulting with my rock star school teacher sister, I came up with a nice lesson plan for the one hour class.

The topic was: Canada!

The student's English was very basic so I kept the lesson pretty simple. I taught the names of all the provinces and territories by having students pick the names and facts out of a hat and placing it on the correct province/territory. They were all very enthusiastic kids and suddenly I forgot that I was supposed to be nervous. Once I felt the class had a good understanding where all the provinces were, I had them do a worksheet of what they'd just learned orally.

I got a kick out of seeing my work on the board and the students taking it all in while completing their worksheet:

I ended the lesson with a dance freeze using a Justin Beiber video that sure got the kids dancing and laughing:

I left Alice's school on a natural high and thought perhaps I should do this and make some money. However, by the time I got to my French class, I was completely wiped out. I totally crashed; teaching that class had exhausted me. 

Maybe I shouldn't teach. I mean that was just a one hour lesson. I can't imagine doing hours of this five days a week. I struggle with giving 2 hour English lessons to my host sisters each night...hmmm but I did love how "in the moment" I was when teaching the class...

Alas, it is 2nd January and my homestay officially ends tomorrow. We are all in Spain again and while I'm fighting this awful cold, I am looking forward to moving out of my host family's house and into the room at the university in Lyon when we return to France in a couple of days. Mentally and physically, I've gone through many ups and downs with this homestay experience and to be honest, I wouldn't do it again. After having traveled around for so long coming and going as I pleased, the obligations required in this homestay program was really not for me.

Don't get me wrong, my host family is lovely, but it just didn't provide the freedom that I needed. That being said, once I move into Lyon proper, I will have all the freedom that my little heart desires.

My three months living with a French family has taught me about some things I want and don't want in life. And that can only be a positive thing.

As I move forward into 2013, I am filled with anticipation of the next chapter in my life and wanderings. Remember the Dashing Young Buck I mentioned in previous posts? Well, guess who's making the trip over The Pond to see me?

Uh-huh. Stay tuned.

And Family, if you're reading this, um...surprise!

Friday, 23 November 2012

Lyon: Une Promenade Matinale

vendredi le 23 novembre, 2012; 18:35
emplacement: dining table, chez Dimouchy. Vourles, Lyon France
pourquoi: Because Anna asked why I haven't posted lately

I really love my traveling soulmate, the Amazing Anna. We are so connected because I was tinkering with a piece for my next post. I sat inside a café in Lyon with the goal of hashing it out but guess what distracted me? No, not boys. Facebook. Fail.


Because you see, it was on Facebook that my travel soul sister asked why I hadn't been blogging.

Ma belle cherie-soeur, ce post est pour vous. Je t'aime!!

One of the great things I love about wanderin' is not going to the 'must sees' and doing the 'must dos'. Instead, I find complete pleasure in the simple things. Such as 'une promenade'. And I have gone on some nice walks.

One crisp morning I took the bus into Lyon d'aller faire une promenade. This city is full of lovely bridges so I started my walk by hanging out on one of them. The rivers Saône and Rhône split the city of Lyon into three major parts. It's easy to remember that the Rhône is on the right side, the Saône is the left side and they converge southwards in the Confluence area. The two rivers create Presqu'île which is the city center of Lyon, aka "The Island"

Hmm, what am I looking at?

Oh, that's a nice view of the old buildings...

Lyon, like a lot of other European cities, is very old. The cool thing is this is a designated UNESCO heritage site. I think I'm subconsciously drawn to these sites because it just occurred to me that the cities I absolutely adored were UNESCO places. Melaka in Malaysia and Luang Prabang in Laos. Oh, how I pine for these two cities...

One of my favourite things to do is meander in the narrow streets and laneways of old towns. And Vieux Lyon did not disappoint. I highly recommend going on a weekend morning stroll when most of the city is still asleep. I adore this 'alone time' because I enjoy the quietness of a place before it roars to life.

Sunday morning dance practice? Peut-être:

As I traversed the streets this one morning, I just headed upwards from the left bank of the Saône where Vieux Lyon rests in her quaintness.

Every so often, I would take note of her crumbling textures:

And always keeping a keen eye on street art. I'm jonesing for some Banksy or Mr. Brainwash. Definitely always looking for Space Invader. But none so Paris perhaps? Peut-être.

But these types of street art are cute too:

I wonder how I can free Joe...he looks more like Federico Aubele...

As I climbed upwards in the old city, I stopped to take in the views incrementally; stealing glimpses as the sun slowly warmed the rooftops. I could feel the city waking up from it's Sunday morning slumber. The air was still crisp and the soleil toasted my chilly cheeks as I hiked towards the big church at the top.

The river Saône in the near distance:

Alas, I made it to the top! The statuesque church, known as Basilique de Fourvière is definitely a touristy place. But lucky for me, at 10:30-ish, I pretty much had the place to myself. And for some strange reason, there wasn't any Sunday mass happening. Perhaps later in the day? Peut-être.

In the meantime I took in the nice view of the city. The tower in the distance is Part-Dieu, a shopping and business center. It is also known to locals as 'le crayon':

My obligatory self portrait:

And look at me all fancy using the self timer on my camera!

I spent a good little while up here just watching the clouds moving life by. And with hardly anyone around, my mind was free to focus on some music in my headphones.

At the moment: Song For Max:

And as I put Shed Demo's album on repeat, my mind was also free to focus thoughts on the Dashing Young Buck. Do you think boys are still distracting me? Peut-étre. My favourite French word these days. Maybe. No, really, that's what it means.

So, was I thinking about a boy. Totes. That's Canadian for totally. You can take the Canadian Girl outta Canada but ya totes can't take the totes outta her!

Hmm, that was kinda corny. Boys. Make. Me. Corny. Sometimes.