Tuesday, August 28, 2007

I'm Back

Howdy, folks! I'm back from the lovely state of Maine and here to dazzle you with the wit and charm of my poetic prose . . .

Well, I'm back, anyways. :-)

Vacation was amazing!

Sat on the shores of a huge, crystal blue, deserted lake and watched the sun go down while the coyotes serenaded me in the distance. Stood on the point that first sees daylight each day in the continental US and picked fresh blueberries from the bushes around me. Saw humpack whales, seals, porpoise and a bald eagle diving for fish. Kayaked with The Boy, took The Puppy for long walks in the forest, and sat on the beach with The Wife, gazing up in awe at the brilliant white lights of an endless universe. Had some great meals (And one crappy one) and some better desserts (OMFG! Blueberry-peach pie & deep fried cheescake!) Spent hours reading quietly beside the roaring fire with my family about me, saw the joy on The Boy's face when I let him drive the motor boat. Got to sleep late, snuggled up tight to The Wife against the morning chill. Never saw a drop of rain, nor a temperature that went over 82 deg. Napped in a hammock, and held hands with The Wife in matched Adirondack chairs beside the water. Walked along granite shoreline and watched the thunderous breakers of the North Atlantic shatter into white foam around me. Sipped blueberry soda and watched sailing ships slide into harbor beneath a sky so blue it hurt your eyes to look at it . . .

Yup. Not bad at all, eh? Shit, it doesn't get any better than that in my book!

Well . . . The Wife might disagree. She had a nice time and all but it was a bit more rustic than she's used to. The cabin didn't have any heat, other than the fireplace, and it got a might nippy in the a.m, which she was definitely NOT a fan of. Also, the water heater was a bit sporadic and had a tendency to shift your shower from scalding to freezing without much notice. Again, not a plus in her book. (Funny as hell to me and The Boy, though! She yelped louder than the coyotes!) Other than that, she had a good time. I imagine I can get her to do it again, provided the cabin we get has heat and steady hot water. Funniest thing was her fussing over The Boy . . . "Are you cold?" "Is it too dark for you out here?" "Careful, there might be animals outside!" I didn't have the heart to tell her that he spends the better part of his time with Scouts: tent camping in two feet of snow, in the middle of nowhere, with bears wandering in and out of camp regularly. He was good about it too. He didn't get frustrated, he just kept saying "Yes, Mom. I'm fine, Mom." and then he'd look at me and silently roll his eyes. The pair of them kept me entertained all week!

Tell ya' what though, it was a royal PITA coming back to Jersey . . . 96 degrees, 90% humidity, and traffic out the hoo-hah . . . I did not miss these things! Work (of course!) sucked Monday. I had 97 e-mails and 12 phone messages waiting for me (which, I'm sad to say, is actually pretty good for my first day back from a vaca. It's usually more like 150+ e-mails!)

Monday ended nicely though. The Wife took me to dinner at a fantastic restaurant for my birthday. Yup, I've actually reached the dreaded four-zero, folks. My sorry old ass is officially middle-aged now. (Have to remember to change the blog header when I'm done posting this!) Good news is that I'm in better shape at the moment than I was at thirty . . . hell, maybe even twenty-five. I'm still moving downward on the scales and running regularly (even while in Maine! How's that for dedication?) Anyways, I'm back in town and I'll keep you posted . . .


Thursday, August 16, 2007

Waitin' . . .

This week can't end quickly enough!

Tomorrow, I'm leaving the crazy behind and headed for the remote wilderness with my family. just a lake, a quiet cabin, and no computers to be found anywhere!!!! Peace and quiet at last . . .

This week of course has been nuts trying to close everything out at work before I split. Home has been fairly stressful as well. The Wife and I are . . . well, not arguing exactly, but in a strong exchange of opinions over the path our future should take. Nobody's getting angry (Thank God!) but we definitely ain't agreeing about things and it's made for some uncomfortable silences and upset stomachs. Just one of them married things, I guess. Single folks don't realize how simple things are for them. They make a decision and move ahead with it. Marriage is "life by committee" . . . everything has to be examined, re-examined, proposed, amended, voted on, then finalized before it can be enacted. No wonder most everyone in Congress is married . . .

Did I mention I need this vacation?

Seriously, the last two vacations we did were Disney (yay.) & D.C. I was more stressed when we got back from those than I had been when we left. I'm not a fan of crowds and agendas. The Wife LOVES agendas. Nothing makes her happier than lists. She loves lists. Lists for everything: what to buy, where to go, when to be there, who to call, where to eat . . . Hell, the woman makes lists of what lists she needs to make! (You think I'm kidding, don't ya? Huh-uh. I've SEEN it!) Love her as I do, the woman makes most "Type-A" personalities seem free-wheelin'! She calls it being organized. I call it being anal-retentive.

And you wonder why she smacks me all the time . . .

Anyway, you won't hear from me next week, so be good y'al. I'll talk at ya' when I get back.


Monday, August 13, 2007

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Catching Up


Still here and still kickin'! Been too busy to post. Took a few days off last week to go camping so the other days were jammed full trying to get ready for the trip and then trying to dig out of the backlog once I got back. Today's the first day I can breathe again!

The trip was cool, I got to do two full days with the Scouts (Sadly, The Boy couldn't make this trip - other responsibilities) and we did some cool stuff. I got to do some water skiing and ride on a "banana boat" (six-person inflatible raft that looks like huge banana and is towed behind a boat at 20 mph by a lunataic driver intent on dumping you all off. Fun as shit!) We also went rock climbing at an 85 ft. tall cliff face, wherein Your's Truly was almost killed.

Nope, I'm not exaggerating at all. I was belaying one of the older boys, when a huge chunk of rock broke off under his weight and plummeted toward me. the rock was about 15 or so inches across and maybe 8 in. thick, dropping from 70 or so feet, right at my delicate noggin! The climber screamed "Rock!" and I saw it coming down but there was nothing I could do. Moving would have meant letting go of the belay line -which I was NOT gonna do- so my only option was to "turtle-in". Bascially, that means pulling arms and legs in tight, head down, and trying to hide my whole body under the teeny little climbing helmet I was wearing. (Yea, like THAT was gonna happen!) Luck was with me though, the rock didn't hit me. It just grazed my left arm, leaving a few scratches, and slammed onto the rocks at my feet, exploding like a grenade, showering my legs with bits of sharp rock, earning me a few more scrapes. Scared the shit out of me! Overall though, it was a cool trip. I even got to shoot me some black powder rifles! Those are awesome!

On other fronts, I hit the In-Law's for a major landscaping project the day after I got back from the mountains. The whole family pitched in to work on their yard as a belatedFather/Mother's Day gift. It was actually fun. it was especially cool when we finished out the last hour or so in the middle of a thunderstorm. It rained buckets and by the end I was running about with nothing on but my shorts (I felt bad for the poor neighbors!) I actually did a little bit of writing last week before I split, not much, just a few hundred words but it was something.

Exercising is still going well, weight still dropping. I actually worried about missing days while I was on vacation but running up and down mountains, etc. MORE than made up for missing a day of running! It also helped that the food at this camp sucked, so I didn't eat a whole hell of a lot.

What else is going on? Oh, I'm working on heading back to school to finish off a BS in Engineering Graphics, did I mention that? That's one of them new things I want to do I been telling y'all about. It's what I specialize in now, so I don't imagine it will give me any great career boost, but it's one of those unfinished things in my life that I want to resolve. Just for my own peace of mind, ya' know? It'll be kinda fun to do some school work too. Maybe The Boy and I can do our homework together this year! :-)