Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Bitter, Moi?

One of the writing sites I belong to is looking for the best wedding story. Is mine the best? I think so, but judge for yourself by visiting the story here: http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/36275/wedding_story.html

Monday, May 29, 2006

NYC May 2006 ~ Quick Recap

I promise to post a more detailed round-up of this weekend's trip to New York - I'm just too sluggish to do it tonight. But in sum, Lizzy and I had a great time - although too short. My friend Cordelia, whom I met on the trip to Afghanistan, showed us some non-touristy areas of the city. She also introduced us to some great bargain shopping.

Although the city was "invaded" with members of the Navy, Marines and Coast Guard, hardly saw any of them. We took the ferry out to Staten Island where the activities were taking place, but took it right back - there just wasn't enough time to do it all. Which means, an excuse for a return trip.

Enjoy these images of the trip - I promise to add captions sometime this week: NYC May 2006 Photos


Tuesday, May 23, 2006

On the Road, Again

Although I'm really enjoying exploring the Big Bend Area of Florida, it seems as though my summer is about over with my upcoming travels to:
  • New York City - Fleet Week - what do sailors say???
  • Sarasota
  • Orlando & West Palm Beach (for work; I get to spend a full day at Discovery Cove - how cool is that!)
  • July 1 (hopefully) - Space Shuttle Launch
  • Miami, Jacksonville & Atlanta
  • Boston and then Boston (these visits, I'm not driving!)

There are more travels in the fall, but that seems sooooo far away. But, I will let you know that in December, I'm heading out to Fort Worth to the Wildcatter Ranch. Any city slickers interested in joining me? Giddy up!

It's There, Use It

My broadband Internet service was knocked out on Sunday and I NEEDED to get online (No, I didn't need my wired fix, I was helping a friend with a school paper). For some reason, after downloading something from Yahoo!, I can't seem to access AOL on my laptop so I dug out my OLD, bulky laptop. Man, that thing is heavy!

I came across files of a project I had worked on for a friend (well, friend is being used loosely). And seeing these files released emotions, reminding me of all my time wasted and lost. Rather than feeling sorry for myself, I got pissed. I got angry at myself for believing in someone else. Believing the goods he sold me.(Well, maybe this is different from feeling sorry for myself).

I took advantage of technology and hit the delete button with glee. It wasn't with satisfaction, just glee. Because I don't think I will ever be at peace with myself. I don't know how I will be able to trust anyone again to let my guard down.

Yeah, there's more, but since I know my parents read this and I don't want to embarrass them (LOL!), I'll leave it at this:

Lessons learned:
  • ONLY believe in myself because it's foolish to believe others.
  • Hope is for suckers.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Yippee for the Hippies!

Being an avid traveler, "The Amazing Race" is one of my favorite television shows. Each week, I live vicariously through couples racing around the world doing odd challenges and experiencing a bit of exotic culture. And the winners of Season 9? BJ& Tyler, dubbed, "the Hippies" for the vintage dress and positive, go-lucky attitudes. Good going, guys!

Are there any volunteers out there willing to team up with me for the next Race?

Support My Work!

Looking for some great hikes in the Tallahassee area? Check out my latest story on AC, click here.

Clicking in My Ears

About a month or so prior to my trip to Afghanistan, I noticed a clicking noise on my land line. Upon returning to the States, the clicking continues. It reminds me of Monica Lewinisky and her good friend Linda Tripp, but could it be something bigger? It's recently come to light (although, I already had a pretty good idea it was happening) that the National Security Agency (NSA) has been collecting phone data of American citizens - in the war on terror.

During my journey, I needed to call Afghanistan on my cell phone (to tell the guide I missed my connection). Has that raised any red flags with NSA? Is someone keeping track of my phone calls? Or do I just have a heightened state of awareness?

Monday, May 15, 2006

Official Language of the United States?

I was half listening to the President's speech tonight - about the National Guard securing the Mexican border for a year. I'm pretty sure I heard the Prez say legal immigration is good. Also THINK I heard him say when immigrants legally live here, learning English opens doors for them.

I agree, it's nice when immigrants living here learn English. BUT, English is not the official language of the United States. There is no official language, yet. In addition to NOT having a language, we are illiterate when it comes to a second language. How many Americans can speak a second language? When we travel abroad, we assume the rest of the world to speak English, even in the most remote places of the planet. And you know what, these people usually know some English.

What does this say about us? Those Americans who can only speak one language? Are we ignorant or arrogant?

China is on the brink of being the next economic super power. Who's getting ready to conduct business with Chinese? Who's learning Mandarin?

Sunday, May 14, 2006

More Weekend Randomness

I'm a fan of eye-catching shots in non-traditional scenes. These photos are: butterfly from a display at the birding festival in St. Augustine, close-up of a horse's braided mane on Amelia Island and sticker at the Down Under Restaurant on Amelia Island. Yeah, there sure is something about a soldier...

Yup, This is My Work...

These are images from this week's work, it included a Donna Summer concert at Animal Kingdom, carriage ride on Amelia Island and seeing a horse foal take its first steps on Cumberland Island.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Will Operation Iraqi Freedom Have Meaning if Alternative Energies Are Developed?

The rising fuel costs have talking heads and news programs debating and discussing alternative energy sources - alternatives to fuel. The biggest alternative source - which is plentiful, renewable and kind to the environment is ethanol fuel. Some predict within five years everyone will be filling their cars with pure ethanol (once it can be produced efficiently).

Which raises the question, if we find and are using an alternative fuel source, will we still be in Iraq in five years? If we won't be reliant on oil, will it be necessary for us to be there?

Yeah, yeah, I know, what "we" did as a country was a good thing - cleaning up part of the "axis of evil" and booting the Taliban out of control in Afghanistan. But, there are other governments in the world that hate us just as much and who perform horrible injustices to their people. Have we stepped in? Have we sent our troops in to sacrifice their lives to save those people?

If we won't/don't need the oil, will all those lives lost in Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) be worth the battle? And remind me. What is the battle again? So, back to the original question, will we be in Iraq in five years? Guess it depends on who's in the White House.

One of Those Days

Today was one of those days. I felt old, tired and couldn't do anything right. I couldn't concentrate and couldn't think. I started thinking about my past and what-ifs about the future. Are these the signs of aging?

Last week's sales trip whipped me tired. Bad enough it was a long, exhausting week, but the flight home was cancelled. Ended up flying into Jacksonville at midnight and driving across I-10 to my cozy bed. Luckily, I wasn't alone and had my co-worker to keep me awake. Don't think I've recuperated from that trip. Did learn that you can't return a rental car at 3:30 a.m. to the Tallahassee Airport - EVERYTHING is closed.

Tomorrow is another day and another trip.