"Island time," is a phrase that was used often before I left for Saipan. Everyone told me, the punctual, scheduled and routine me, to prepare myself for "island time." No problem. So far, island time has meant long lunch hours, short work days, and weeks that fly by. The sun sets here around 7, which is almost 2 hours earlier than what I'm used to back home; and after work there are either a million things to do or nothing. Being here for only a few weeks gives me reason to try to fill every waking hour with some activity. Lately, I've had to institute my own island time, and selectively choose what my next adventure will be.
Last week was week two of my practicum, which by the way, is going great. I work with a great pediatrician who is funny as shit and has two little boys who run around naked, eat dessert with no hands and tickle your ankles under the brunch table. I've been productive, so hopefully, by the time Deuce gets here we'll have enough free time to tour Saipan together. Anyway, last week, I set the Hash with a friend from here. It was a blast! We cut through land (with permission) up on the north end of the island, between Banzai and Suicide cliffs. The trail continued up a trail that goes from the base of Suicide (the Last Command Post) straight up to the top of Suicide. It was awesome. We spent several hours cutting the trail, and I mostly followed behind Dan (or "Tonsil Tickler" in the Hash world) as he hacked away at jungle with a machete. By the time it was all said and done, we had a great Religion, at which I was named. One week an FNG the next a virgin hare, and now named. Not bad.
On Friday, a friend, who is also working at the CHC, and I went to one of the Pediatricians' home for some Thai food (made by her Thai maid) and a dip in the Anaks swimming pool under the stars. It was great. Good food, great people, and more connections here in Saipan.
Saturday was consumed by the hash; spreading flour on the trail, more machete-ing, dodging runners in order to keep my pants on, etc. But, on Sunday, we ventured to the Fiesta for brunch. The last two weeks we've gone to the Hyatt and spent $33 each on an all you can eat buffet that makes my insides tingle (and cramp with delicious gluttony). Fiesta was great, cheaper, and we went with other friends from the hospital. Our original plans were to go to Forbidden Island for a hike afterwards, but torrential down pours ushered us to the movies instead. Mama Mia! a total cornball, chick flick that is so bad it's great. For $5 I'll go watch anything, and I would say it was worth my five.
It's already the beginning of week three, and I just can't believe it. Deuce will be here in two weeks from today! I'm excited to introduce him to the many people I have met, and the crazy, wondrous place that is Saipan.
Last night, we went to Joeten in Susupe to check out the deals and the monstrosity of a store. It's right next to Athlete's Foot, which to me, just doesn't sound like the next place I want to buy a pair of socks or shoes; and it in fact engulfs the Athlete's Foot, as they are both owned by JoeTen. I have to say I was a bit disappointed, until I saw the souvenirs! OH the souvenirs! Now, picture the most tacky picture frames, key chains, post cards, and paper weights you can imagine, plus a bit of lewdness and hilariousness, and you get this:
Week two involved lots of hiking in Marpi, late night runs on the beach, flour up to my elbows, and eating. Week three has begun with Ass Magnets and a Deluxe Moose Tracks Sundae for $3.75 at the Big Dipper. Saipan is only getting better!