Friday, August 12, 2005

Cool in the Pool

So far I've managed to walk early enough in the day to beat the heat 3 times while on vacation. I also went one evening. But for the last three days Pip the Dog has been laying around bleary eyed in the A/C while I take off to the pool. I've been to the city pools twice now. They aren't bad, although every time I went someone felt compelled to tell me at least once about the "Adult Swim" in the evenings. Why would I try to beat the heat in the evening when it's the afternoon that's killing me? So I calmly jumped in and then sat around after reading in the shade. Very relaxing. Have decided to sell house and buy one with outdoor pool closer. Ha ha. Today I checked out the Pocahontas State Park Pool and Aquatic Recreation Center (you can tell it's a government facility can't you). Very nice, but there's no shade. It's hard to believe that this park is barely a year old and already the bathrooms look like crap and the locks don't work. It's definitely worth the $3 entry fee and $6 swim fee if you have kids. However, it's a lot more satisfying to have a short drive to a pool and pay nothing.

Sunday, August 07, 2005

So far ...

This vacation has been really different from any vacation I have ever had. I am not going anywhere. I am just here at home.

Good: Saving a lot of money, no packing, no driving, no traveling, I know where all the services are.
Bad: No way to get away from the stuff that needs to be done around here.

The optimistic view: I can now get to those things that nag me to death when I'm working. I can be a tourist in my home town (I might even see the Edgar Allen Poe Museum).

I've removed 99% of the dog hair from all the floors. I've had two nice, long walks with Pip in the cool of the morning. I've visited two free city swimming pools. Big surprise: they are clean and full of nice people. Another surprise: the indoor pool was more crowded than the outdoor pool.

So, lovely, lovely discovery: free pools in town worth using.

Not considering the pessimistic view at this time. :-)

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Take a Vocation

I'm about to go into hock to try this out. Maybe I need to back away from the computer for a couple of hours. But if I had the money, I would go. Definitely.

Instead, I'll be tearing out the bathroom during vacation time in August. That's the plan, anyway.

Monday, July 04, 2005

My next vacation will not be a vacation. It will be tearing out bathroom walls and making new ones. I have been told by a an ex-carpenter friend that fixing moldy bathroom walls is not a glamorous job and that none of his current carpenter buddies would thank him for referring me. How lovely. I am obviously in the wrong profession. I can't afford to turn down work whether glamorous or not.

I am in this predicament because one out of five contractors finally gave me an estimate of $7,500.00 to repair half of my 6' X 8' bathroom (just the walls around the tub and replace the tub and hang a surround). For some reason my block walls also need sheetrock. It's taken 6 months to get one estimate on this bathroom. I'm sure it has a lot to do with the neighborhood I live in and contractors being more interested in jacking up their prices than being creative or economical. It's just not fair!

I'm really into the subconcious meanings of jingles. The R. J. Tilley jingle is "Everyone is living comfortabley with R. J. Tilley." I'm pretty sure this means the employees of Mr. R. J. Tilley, not the residents of the area they service. I walked on their estimator. No one has called me to try to get me back.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

IF ... however, it is not IF it is IS. So I am dreaming of taking a photography class.

Friday, May 20, 2005

I’ve wanted to go to The Cannes Film Festival since before the 50th anniversary – over 8 years. Gee, just imagine if I had been saving up all along I might have been able to go this year. Anyway, this week I saw some photos of a press conference and read an issue of the Variety Cannes free edition and it’s all just some big business convention that the public is invited to attend by proxy. The tradeshow booths are outside and are mostly permanent structures, although some vendors set up just for the festival. It’s just like a big opening night in Hollywood where you see a lot of actors (or thesps as the trade calls them) and watch a lot of movies. I like the watching movies part. That’s good. And seeing thesps is good too – especially if I can experience them as real people and not income streams. However, the latter is exactly what happens at The Cannes Film Festival. It’s a place for producers and directors to show their wares and make deals with distributors. Very boring. If I were young, buxom and so inclined (to mostly go topless) it could also be a way for me to get into movies as a thesp myself. Boring.

So, I no longer have any ambition to go there in person, except maybe just to see Cannes when the festival is not there (and to maybe go topless when no one is looking).

Another mostly dead dream is to go to NYC during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Instead of an outburst of creative expression, it’s a business convention for the NY theatre industry held in the public view. It’s a way to promote what’s new on Broadway this season.

Turns out my dreams are just contributions to the media circus that boosts someone else’s income, not visits to true festivals that actually celebrate something. That is what I really need: a reason to celebrate something.

My next vacation will most likely be a camping trip. I like sleeping outside. Really. I hate leaving my dog behind. He loves being outside with me.

I am putting money aside and saving a bit by not having a real (going somewhere exotic, or new-different-and-exciting) vacation. However, I am reminded by reading old journals that typically around the end of October my funds diminish so I need to put aside a cushion for that time which lasts until March. So, the whole idea of saving one year to have a really fabulous vacation the next has fallen to corporate greed and my inability to negotiate a decent salary or to find a job that’s worth the effort.

So, what I really need is a reason to celebrate.

Short List of Vacation Ideas:

  1. Cannes (during the not festival time)

  2. Mensa World Gathering 2006

  3. Tahiti (during the not Billabong Pro competition)

  4. Key West (anytime)

  5. The Bahamas (anytime but especially in February)

  6. Germany in the summer

  7. Burning Man – a real festival (need a serious plan for this one; seems like a lot like work)

  8. Canal boating in England and Wales

  9. Horseback trail riding through the mountains

  10. Backpacking in a wilderness area

  11. Ocracoke for a long fly-in weekend

Monday, March 21, 2005

I have rearranged my vacation time 4 times already. So far the only firm date is a trip to the beach to see my mother while my aunt is visiting from Germany. The rest is up in the air. I have about 8 days in August because I hate August so I get out of work and go do something cool and refreshing.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

I can't remember what I posted last time I was here. This is pretty sad. I genuinely thought that this site would get me movtivated to plan a truly fine vacation but it hasn't worked like that. I'm overwhelmed by my desire to have a truly fine vacation. Like it's way out of reach. With my debt load I have a hard time justifying anything that isn't necessary. Even if I go "nowhere" this year that doesn't mean I'll actually save for a great vacation.

So what is a great vacation? Marathon key? I have a vague recollection of someone tellling me they have nude beaches there. Any beach is fine. I could wait until June and just go to Virignia Beach. That would be easy. Then I would have beach. I have thought about islands. There are some off of Florida and Georgia. The Bahamas are always good. One year my parents went to Bermuda. I'd like to see the white sand and blue water.

A half-dream is to see the faces of Mt Rushmore in person. I've seen a couple of pictures that put it into scale. I"m afraid I'll be disappointed.

Anyway, my real vacation this year is scheduled (so far) for April and August with one week still to be decided. I'd like to stay home and work on the house: painting, deck work, etc. Then I'd also like a week at the beach and then I would like to see my son and his family in Milwaukee. Seems too mundane. But I guess that's it for this year.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

No luck deciding what to do this year. I grabbed a week in April and a week in August. I get 5 more days in the next round. Gee, I hope something good comes along.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Going to the opera is almost like being on a vacation. There's nothing better for frazzled nerves than an expressive, excellently presented opera. It's a way to sit back and let someone else pay attention to detail. I loved it. I didn't know much about Wagner or "Tristan and Isolde" before. Now I know something. I read a couple of books (one of them the libretto—hey! I know a new word!). I also checked out the music CDs from the library. The production I saw in Norfolk on February 4th is much better than the recording I checked out. That Peter Mark guy is one hell of a great creative director.

I liked the ending that Peter Mark came up with—Isolde lays across Tristan as she dies and the whole set is lit up like an underwater cave. It's pretty good. In the real story, Isolde's husband, King Marke, is supposed to bless the dead lovers. That's an interesting ending if the action is directed to highlight this tension in King Marke. Peter streamlined the action to focus on Isolde and Tristan. I suppose since the story is about them that's a pretty good way to go. I really liked the treatment even though it left a few things out. But, that's a director's prerogative.

The remainder of the weekend was also a lovely vacation from routine. I really enjoyed conversing with my sisters and nieces. Mom made us a totally great dinner Friday night.

My next vacation is February 21st. Haven't a clue what I'll be doing. Suggestions?

Friday, February 04, 2005

My next vacation started today. I'm going to the beach to see my mother and an opera. The best part of vacation is sleeping until I wake up. I know.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

I'm taking two vacations this weekend.

Going Back to Work on Monday. I'm calling up my private plane and jetting out to Freeport, Bahamas. I'm leaving in about an hour. I'll be back Monday afternoon so I can chill out and unpack before getting ready for another work week. I'm taking a friend along.

Not Going Back to Work on Monday. I'm calling up my private jet and jetting out to Oberstdorf (oooh, check out the webcams!) for some good skiing (this is why I keep my passport current). While I'm there I'll be picking up my daughter from Switzerland for a couple of days. After that, some friends have told me they will be there during the week. I'm looking forward to great evening conversations over Gl├╝hwein and maybe a little night skiing with a torch in my hand (or posted along the run). I'll be back a week from tomorrow. Then back to work.

Work is not a bad thing. It makes the time go by and I feel like I'm accomplishing something, even it's just becoming more patient or getting a client to understand that they need to be real specific when they give instructions. I learn at work. I like work that teaches me things. However, it also has to pay me for those new skills. I can see how management would think that they incur an expense by teaching me. However, I am a very quick learner and they get a return on their investment in a very short time and generally get back two times more (at least) than if they had invested in an average person.

I've nothing against average people. They are what make me stand out so much. Also, there are plenty of way-above-average people who are a lot of trouble. It's just that the definition of average is what most people are. It's not my fault I'm so smart. I was made that way. Everyone has a talent they can take advantage of. Mine is intelligence. I haven't taken advantage of it because it seems so unfair to run rings around people.

What I need is a way to jump in and out of this life. I like the low profile, low key life but I need to sometimes jump out and do something wild and out there or up there or whatever it is that that my heart calls me to do. I need a particular type of rhythm—like dancing in and out of a rut ... or maybe that's walking and dancing ...

Friday, January 14, 2005

Woo hoo! Having a mini-vacation right here at work! Blogger is unblocked!

Having a terrible time getting my bathroom repaired. It's too small a job for anyone and apparently all the contractors are backed up.

Having no luck in the vacation department. That can only mean some unforseen event preventing me from making a decision. Well, I'll have plenty of time to schedule. The vacation book hasn't even come around yet.

Tally ho!