Once again, my life has been a rollercoaster. Finding a spare minute to sit down and blog has become really difficult. Usually, in summer I find more time to do things, which is quite a phenomenon because my shift does not change, but this summer has been the opposite. The drama troupe I work with had a show in which I played three different roles and two genders, which was great fun (cast and crew, I totally miss you) but whenever I have a show my life always goes topsy turvy for a week. Also, a paper I wrote got accepted for a major gastroenterology conference and that takes time to get together. Plus I have two job-related interviews coming up and those bring along added stress.

Someone who never seems to let stress get to her is my dear friend Janet. I call her Janet from another planet affectionately, because it is very true- social norms are wasted on her, she does what she likes when she likes and does not care what anyone thinks.

What really astonishes me about Janet is the amount she eats and remains as skinny as ever. When we go to a cafe she will have no problem eating two desserts…and she has been to every cafe on the island. As we drive through the streets looking for somewhere to have a nibble she starts the running commentary ‘Hmmm…over there, they have great coffee but their cakes suck…over there the coffee is really bad…over there they have great doughnouts…in that cafe, the waitress looks like she is suffering from depression…that cafe has dirty toilets…’ and so on and so forth. I literally sit back and let her choose. So far I haven’t been disappointed.

Another thing about Janet is that she absolutely can’t cook. And it isn’t for lack of trying. One time she tried to make chicken and she didn’t let it defrost but she stuck it in the oven anyway. She then called me to see if she was doing the right thing. The conversation went something like this:

‘Marie, is it bad to put frozen chicken in the oven?’

‘Yes.’

‘Really?’

‘Yes.’

‘Uh oh…’

Somehow we managed to save this chicken through a number of phone calls without killing anyone with salmonella poisoning.

Some random funny Janet moments:

1. Making a large tower out of sand at the beach and then adding testicles to it.

2. Pretending to be mentally impaired in order to get a free ice cream (and it worked.)

3. Putting suppositories up the wrong hole.

4. wanting to start a pillow fight during a very challenging night shift.

5. pretending to be the MGM lion while I am giving a class presentation.

6. asking her friend in a loud voice in a very quiet cafe why does she hit her mother with a hammer every night.

7. wearing purple contact lenses to school and telling everyone she turned out that way due to a traffic accident (or something similar, I do not have the facts straight on this episode)

8. Insisting that I don’t dust my feet off after going to the beach because she likes a summery sandy feeling in the car.

Actually, the list is endless. However, I am so thankful to have this person in my life. She makes me laugh and makes me forget my troubles. She makes everything look so trivial, and that is a true gift. If there is anyone who will never get caught up in the rat race, its Janet. She does have her own troubles and worries, as does everyone, but she does not let them conquer her life. I really admire her and the way she takes life with a pinch of salt.

She got married recently, so I made her some house warming cupcakes. I use a classic vanilla recipe and then play around with the icing. the friendship I have with Janet is a lot like one of my cupcakes: I am the vanilla cake: soft, consistently good and you pretty much know what you are going to get. Janet is the vibrant icing, cool, tangy with just the right amount of sweetness. We compliment each other 🙂

Until next time…which will hopefully be soon.

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