Friday, May 30, 2014

Health First’s CPR and 5K Run/Walk

I think I can, I think I can
I call foul. No really, it’s not fair. Last weekend was Char’s birthday weekend and what did we do? We lounged around the pool, drank pink lemonade with strawberry vodka, listened to music, played cards and never left the house. Now that’s a nice, relaxing birthday. It’s even what she asked for and since we’re nice sometimes, we gave it to her.

This weekend is my birthday weekend. Don’t worry about how old I am. Just allow the gray hairs to talk for me. However, guess who didn’t get asked what he wanted to do? Now guess who was told he was going to the Health First CPR and 5K Run/Walk? Now you see why I call foul? This is a totally unbalanced system of celebration! I want birthday cake and ice cream, alcohol and cigars. I do not want exercise!

Furthermore, I think it’s cruel to combine the CPR class with the 5K walk–notice I dropped the run part–because not only do I have to walk, I also have to learn something. Exercise and education on my birthday weekend. This is not a good gift idea. However, it is also probably smart because by the time the race is over I will be the dummy everyone is practicing CPR on, trying to revive me and bring me back to life. Hopefully the oxygen they bring to resuscitate me is birthday cake flavored.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Political Parties

Look at all of those crazy people down there
Anyone who has read The Mess for any lengthy period of time or who have spent any amount of time talking to me knows that I rarely discuss religion or politics. I don’t mind discussing them, mind you. I just prefer having intelligent discussions on the subjects and not debate with an asinine ignoramus who really doesn’t wish to talk about issues, but who wants to merely rant like an elementary school student on the playground. These people believe that if they scream louder than everyone else and use harsh language and negative comments then they’ll win their argument. You can’t argue with arrogant ignorance, so I don’t try. They may think they’ve won, but in reality I have because I have now discovered another part of the problem with our country.

Monday, May 26, 2014

An Interstate Tutorial

The girls and I take quite a few trips each year, traveling interstates and highways in order to explore new areas and bring back precious memories that we can talk about while we’re sitting in our rockers in later years. The one thing I have noticed in my travels–my biggest pet peeve, to be blunt–is that people simply do not know how to drive on the highways. There are rules that you need to adhere to on the interstates to make traveling safer and easier for all concerned. So, this post is a Public Service Announcement to those ignorant on the proper rules of the road. Please forward this link to any and all travelers so that I may keep my blood pressure in check. I greatly appreciate it.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Spooky Stories and Ghost Tours

Ready to be scared
Are you one of those who like ghost stories and spooky tales? I am as long as I am the one telling them. I am not a fan if I am the one being scared. I know, it’s a double standard, but I tend to roll that way. Of course, two of the girls love ghost stories, cemeteries, and spooky adventures, so we tend to visit places that Teri and I would prefer to avoid. It’s all part of the compromise of relationships I’m told. I think it’s a trap personally.

Still we do it. A few years ago while visiting St. Augustine we took one of their trolley ghost tours to learn the eerie history of the city. Char lives for this stuff, as I said, and we had done it for her. Teri stayed well hidden behind the glass of the trolley while the rest of us were left with open windows and a sacrifice to whatever may jump out and scare us.

Monday, May 19, 2014

They Said to Tell You Hello

Our closest of friends
“Hey, I ran into the Jenkins today and they said they missed you and to tell you hello. They’ve been thinking about you and want to get together.”

I stared at him as my mind screamed “Bullshit!” My phone number is the same. So is my address. They know both and so if they really wanted to get in touch with me and say hello or get together for coffee and a game of Go Fish, they know where and how to find me. But they don’t want to do either of those things, so why say that nonsense to our children?

Friday, May 16, 2014

Trying to Do It All

Taking it easy
It doesn’t matter where we go on vacation, we want to see it all. We just don’t want to miss anything, because honestly, we don’t know when we will be returning. I watch people at the Disney parks do this all the time. They rush from one ride to the next, grumbling about long lines and a crowded park. They are only there for the day and they want to get in as much as they can so they can go home and brag to their friends about what they have done and seen. It’s why we stayed Sunday in Savannah after everyone else had gone home. We wanted a closer, slower look at City Market and River Street. We had been there already, but felt rushed to get it done and checked off so we could move on to the next sight that had to be seen. We walked for another five hours, slowly meandering the stores, enjoying some ice cream, snapping photos. We love snapping photos. I think it drives our kids and friends crazy at times when they go on trips with us. Yet, I look for things to remember in writing and the girls take the scenery and candid shots. It’s nothing for us to come back with over a thousand pictures on just one four hour excursion.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

City Market and River Street

Two of the main things we wanted to explore were City Market and River Street, which worked out well since several of our tourist trap spots were in both of those places. We explored City Market Friday as we were traveling from square to square and then the girls and I returned Sunday before heading out for a little more investigating in the shops and artists’ studios. What started out in 1985 as the rehabilitation of the four block area has resulted in a must destination for artists, shopping, dining and entertainment fit for locals as well as visitors.

As we crossed through Ellis Square on our way to City Market I was impressed with the how clean and welcoming everything was. Fountains sprayed upward as children ran back and forth playing in the water, families played chess with life-size pieces, and couples lounged on the grounds soaking up the sun. The traffic was barely noticeable as we soaked in the sights, sounds and smells.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Eating Out in Savannah

Part of our enjoyment when visiting other areas is to savor the local cuisine. Besides, the girls say they are on vacation and deserve to be treated by others, so because I want to eat when we return home, I try hard to oblige them when we are away. The way we do our trips is to rent a house as opposed to a hotel room, unless it’s just the four of us and then a room is perfect. The reason we do the house is so that we can all stay together, enjoying a place to hang out and relax, and not have to wander the halls. We will usually fix breakfast there, but that is to keep us from having to rush out the door. We would much rather enjoy waking up at our own pace and it takes a while to pick out the correct hat for the day, anyway.

With our recent trip to Savannah, we arrived before the house was ready and too late for breakfast, so we had lunch at 17hundred90 Inn & Restaurant.  To be honest, it was my favorite dining experience of the trip outside of the few meals we had at our rental home. The 17hundred90 had a small but very friendly staff and we entered through their bar, which in itself was quaint with a local, homey atmosphere that I wish we would have had time to enjoy more. The inn is comprised of three adjacent residences, a duplex built by Steel White and a smaller home built by the Powers family in 1888. It was a short walk to River Street and to our rental property, which was a great benefit to everything we did on our stay. One of the pluses to this restaurant was that it is said to be haunted and the girls love a good ghost story. It wasn’t until we took our ghost tour the next night that we saw the figure that had been placed in the window that was said to represent the ghost of Anna who takes a great dislike to female visitors. Who doesn’t enjoy dining with ghosts, right?

Friday, May 9, 2014

Colonial Park Cemetery

What do you like to tour on vacation? There are always historical sites, new restaurants, or unique spots that you can’t ever find anywhere else. However, one of the things the girls and I like to tour through are the ancient cemeteries. It always fascinates me what you can learn about an area just by strolling through the local graveyards. Did a plague hit at one point? Some major catastrophe? How many people were of the same name? History is quite often revealed through the tombstones.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Vacation Hangover

Anyone who has been out for a night on the town with friends and cohorts knows what a hangover is because at one time or another almost everyone has had one. We don’t think about it at the time when it is possible to slow our drinking down and avoid the day after feeling of welcoming death. No, we can handle our alcohol at that moment and our sense of self-assuredness, as misguided as it is, keeps us ordering round after round until we know it’s too late, but don’t really care. We’re tough. We can handle it. At least, that is how the drunken pep talk goes until we wake in the morning and realize what a giant baby we are and want someone to shoot us. We suffer the pounding headache that screams even as the wind blows too loud and our stomach is on a permanent roller coaster. We are tired and suddenly our body does not want to move from wherever it collapsed the night before. The sun melts our eyes as well as our brains and our mouths feel as if we swallowed an entire cotton field. We swear we will never drink again and we stick to that promise–until later that night, that is.

Monday, May 5, 2014

The Squares of Savannah

This past weekend, the girls and I joined six of our closest friends and headed to Savannah, Georgia for four days and three nights. Teri found us a house to stay in while we were there and early Thursday morning, we loaded up our van and made the four and a half hour trek north to the south. While Florida resides south of everything else, it is hardly a Southern state due to being made up mostly of retired Northerners and the rest of us born here who refused to move anywhere else.