mythicalgirl: (not doing shit)
The icon is actually for tomorrow as today I did indeed do shit.  I restained the deck.  Two coats worth.  In related news: ow.

This means that I have accomplished everything on my to do list for my vacation.  The new garage door has been installed.  The A/C has been serviced.  The grass has been cut - twice.  And the deck has been stained.  I've also played numerous games of sudoku and bejewled, watched most of season 1 of Babylon 5, read some books, and basically chilled out. 

All in all a successful vacation.  As for tomorrow the icon says it all - I'm not planning on doing anything.
mythicalgirl: (pirate)
Got up at o-dawn-too-damn-early so I could take a quick shower before my 8-12 window for the A/C guy.  By eight I was curled up on the couch with the phone nearby - where I quickly fell asleep until ten.  Made myself get up off the couch, moved to the chair and played sudoku until they called to say they were on the way.  The tech got here just a few minutes before noon!  I really wish they had smaller appointment windows because I could have slept in! 

He did his thing and everything is working fine.  The A/C blower has a max rating of .80 and is running at .73, which is really high and means it could go at any time.  This is not news as it has been inching up there with every service call since I bought the house.  A replacement part would be $700, which isn't cost effective when you take into account that the whole unit is 19 years old.  So when it goes I'll be getting a new air conditioner.  This is why I've been saving money almost obsessively. 

After the tech left I tried playing some more sudoku but eventually gave up as I couldn't keep my eyes open.  A little after one I went back to bed, just to take a nap.  Woke up at 4:30.  So much for a "little nap".  But hey I'm on vacation, right?  So I can sleep all day and stay up all night if I want.  At least that's what I keep telling myself. 

I'm not sure what I'm going to do this evening but I think I should get to it!  Later.
mythicalgirl: (bipolaroid)
I have a new garage door!  Pretty garage door!
*ahem*

Watching the demolition of the old door, track, etc was cool.  Thankfully the guys doing the work weren't bothered by my watching - actually they laughed at me a bit as I was so obviously enthralled watching it all come down.  Then the phone rang and I was cold so I went back inside, told the FOP that no, I didn't want to donate to them right now thank you very much, played some sudoku and then went back out to the garage to see the progress and had a new door.  Did I mention that it is pretty?  The gray matches the siding almost exactly. 

Today I also:
- cleaned the kitchen and living room (before the garage door)
- ran the dishwasher (also before the garage door)
- talked to my parents (after)
- took myself out to eat at the local Mexican joint (after)

At the resturant I spoke my very limited Spanish with my waitress who was thrilled that I was trying and helped me with the words/phrases I didn't understand.  This is why I like Margaritas - they let me practice and don't get snippy when I get stuck.  Plus the food and the serivce are great. 

In less happy news (thus the bipolar icon) today is the mid-point of my vacation.  Only 5 days left before I have to go back to work.  And tomorrow is the A/C guy between 8 and noon, meaning I have to get my butt out of bed early. 

In the meantime I'm going to enjoy this as much as possible!  Later.
mythicalgirl: (Default)
Did the WalMart run yesterday.  Cut the grass today.  Watched discs 2 and 3 of season 1 on Babylon 5. 

I love vacation. 
mythicalgirl: (bipolaroid)
I had to go to the office today.  I know, I know, I'm on vacation.  But yesterday I went for a walk at lunch so I'd changed into my tennis shoes and left my work shoes next to my backpack.  When I was getting ready to leave around 3:00 I was still in my tennis shoes and was getting all my shit together as well as answering last minute questions when I remembered I had a check to deposit at the bank on the way home.  So I got out the check and a deposit slip, filled everything out and put them in my purse so I could go through the drive-thru at the bank.  Then I left.  Leaving my dress shoes on the floor in my cubicle. 

Of course I didn't realize I'd forgotten my shoes until I got home and was pulling stuff out of my backpack.  I tried to let it go, telling myself that the shoes would be fine (who would take them?) and they could wait until I came back to work on the 10th.  No good - I was mildly OCD all evening and had weird-ass dreams all night.  So today after I got ready I headed back downtown to the office and got my damn shoes.  Time in the building?  Four. Freaking. Minutes. 

But I'm much more relaxed now so it was worth it.  Had I not gone to get them I'd probably be weirded out all week.

Today included a few errands, some shopping (books and comics) and now laundry.  At some point I need to go to the grocery store, WalMart, and Lowes.  On the agenda this week is mowing the grass, staining the deck, getting my new garage door Wednesday afternoon, and getting the A/C serviced Thursday morning.  And only the garage door and A/C are absolutely required (although if I don't cut the grass its going to take over).  Everything else depends on if I'm feeling it, not to mention the weather.  I intend to leave the grocery/WalMart run until a weekday too. 


As for now, that's pretty much it.  Now if you'll excuse me, there's a book to finish and some more episodes of Babylon 5: Season 1 to watch.     
mythicalgirl: (pirate)

Did I mention that I'm on vacation next week?  One glorious week of not being at work and its only three days away!  Three days in which I really need to get about a weeks worth of work completed since I will not be doing any of it while I'm out. 

So of course my level of motivation is somewhere below that of a slug.  Vacationitis, I has it. 

I'm thinking a nice walk outside to clear my head, decline one of my afternoon meetings, and then some good music on the headphones so I can get this @$#& tech design done before I leave today. 

Just three days.  I can make it, right? 

mythicalgirl: (pirate)
Hey, guess what? 

Today is vacation day! 

Oh, yeah, baby!  just a few more minutes here in the office tidying up last minute things then I'm on vacation for three weeks.  And not a moment too soon if you ask me. 

Bags are packed (and heavy - what am I taking, bricks?), the house is prepped, my house sitter is also prepped, work is as done as its going to get...now it is just a matter of time until the car comes to pick me up. 

Checked the available seats for my flight this afternoon - the plane is full, full, full except for first class.  Here's hoping I can score an upgrade (fingers crossed).  Either way I'll soon be in Texas chilling with my parents until my flight overseas tomorrow. 

Keep you fingers crossed that my bag isn't over the weight limit.  I packed once, decided it was too heavy, took out some things and packed again, thought it was still too heave, made a couple more changes, and now I think it is as good as it is going to get.  Still feels really heavy to me although maybe I'm just weak! 

Expect blogging to be intermittent over the next three weeks.  Totally depends on internet availability.  I might send a few short updates from my iPod but I don't expect to have solid internet until I'm on the ship next Tuesday.  I'm not sure about posting pictures yet so that may have to wait until I get back. 

Wish me safe travels.  
mythicalgirl: (splosions)
The refrigerator is empty.  Well technically there are a few sodas, three beers and what's left of a bottle of wine.  But no food.  Meaning the rest of my meals before I leave tomorrow afternoon will likely be eaten out unless I want soup. 

The trash man came this morning.  There is now nothing in the house or the trash toter that could spoil or stink up the place while I'm gone. 

Tonight when I get home from work there will be a last load or two of laundry then packing.  I'll have the suitcase and backpack done before I go to bed.  I expect I'll drink the last glass or two left in that bottle of wine as well.  Then hopefully some sleep before I come in for a half day of work (where nothing will get done). 

Between getting home from work tomorrow and when the car comes to get me I'll turn off and unplug the computer and TV, set up the timer on the lights, turn off the ceiling fans, and turn back the water heater to vacation.  Water the plants, write out some phone numbers for B- just in case she has problems while watching the house, and do one last idiot check to make sure I have everything. 

Then the car will come and I'll be on my way to the airport and adventure in parts of the world where people are currently rioting.  Some have voiced concern about my choice to go to Greece, Italy, Egypt and Israel, what with all the rioting and violence.  I will admit that I have some concerns as well - concerns, not fear.  I am paying attention to the news, watching the alerts from the state department, etc.  I am not stupid, I am always cautious....and I'm still going. 
mythicalgirl: (cat powers)
Two days.  I. Can. Not. Wait. 

Actually less than two days before the car comes to take me to the airport.  Woo Hoo!

I would like to say something coherent here but really, Two freaking Days!  I can't remember the last time I was so ready for a vacation.  Oh yeah, September 2010 when I had my last one! 

Tonight - empty the fridge and all the trashcans for tomorrow is trash day. 
Tomorrow - spend a good portion of the day in meetings (where I will likely be no help at all as I have a severe case of vacationitis)
Tomorrow night - PACK!
Thursday - half day at work where I will do last minute stuff like out of office messages in between bouncing off the walls. 
Thursday afternoon - LEAVE!

So far I'm not seeing anything about the strikes in Greece closing the Acropolis or the museums while we are there.  And the public transportation strike is 19-20th and I don't arrive until the 22nd.  Keeping my fingers crossed that things will be uneventful while I'm there although considering the current situation and the upcoming vote on austerity measures I'm not counting on it. 

TWO DAYS!

Three Days

Oct. 17th, 2011 09:53 am
mythicalgirl: (OMG Corpse Bride)
OK, technically three and a half since I'm working a half day on Thursday before leaving.  Either way my vacation is almost here!  YAY!

I did a practice pack yesterday.  When I was done I looked at the suitcase (which I was able to close) and started laughing.  Seems I tried to pack all the things.  My goal of creating mix-and-match outfits didn't do so well the first time around.  Too many colors in the palette as it were.  So I unpacked, removed some things, and now I think I might have a decent wardrobe with enough variety without seriously overpacking.  I'm going for about 6 days of outfits, day and evening.  Obviously there will need to be laundry but we knew that.  There's no way I could do a three week trip without doing laundry. 

I have all my paperwork printed, my passport in my purse, money - both dollars and euros - the clothes I plan to take washed and ironed, and a list of last minute tasks (mainly emptying the fridge and taking out the trash). 

If anyone is expecting anything resembling work out of me this week they must be high. 
mythicalgirl: (buddha)
Today I
1) swept out and straightened the garage
2) dumped the containers from the container garden
3) cleaned said containers
4) cleaned the deck
5) unhooked the hose, drained, and put in the now clean garage
6) started to clean the gutters until I realized that I was wasting my time (leaves are still falling)
7) showered
8) two loads of laundry (so far)
9) assembled my med kit for my trip
10) put together my toiletries that will be in my checked bag
11) put together the toiletries that will be in my carry on bag
12) started packing my backpack

Whew!  I'm just a wee bit tired now.  Still to do is more laundry and figuring out exactly what clothes to pack.  I'll probably practice pack tomorrow.  I pretty much always practice pack for these big trips because I overpack the first time and it gives me a chance to pare things down a bit.  I still end up overpacking and I doubt this trip will be any different.  I'm going to be gone for 21 days (18 abroad), the weather is going to range from upper 40s at night to anywhere from mid-sixties to mid-eighties during the day.  That means layers.  Plus while we don't do the formal nights on the ship we do have to 'dress' - meaning I can't wear jeans and a T-shirt.  The key will be selecting pieces that can be put together to make several outfits, both casual and dressy.  And keeping my bag under the weight limit!  Daunting but doable.  Thank goodness we get laundry service on the ship or I'd be screwed. 

Now I'm going to update the iPod and the Kindle one more time before I leave, do more laundry, get the other spare key to my neighbor, and have a late lunch / early dinner. 

Only 5 days!  Oh my goodness I am so ready for this. 
*happy dance*
mythicalgirl: (cat powers)
I missed posting yesterday - oops!

As of today I'm 8 days away from my very much deserved vacation.  Three weeks of not being here (work) and not dealing with this project or the crap that comes with it. 

The State Department issued an advisory for Americans traveling abroad today due to the whole Iran thing.  Plus there's still unrest in Egypt.  Heck, I'll be in Greece, Egypt and Israel (along with Turkey and Italy)!  I'm definitely headed to some of the world's "hot spots". 

In other news I've been watching the news on my blog feed about the decriminalization of domestic violence in Topeka, KS and the "personhood" amendment in Mississippi.  Both of these situations make me really, really angry - and unfortunately not surprised.  I am sick to death of holier than thou, right-wing, christianist fruitcakes making decisions like this.  There is a movement in this country that wants nothing more than to see women marginalized and deprived of their rights.  What is even more concerning to me is how many women there are who actually support this kind of bullshit because of their religious beliefs.  

Plus there isn't a lot of mention of these stories on the big mainstream media sites.  Google Topeka Kansas Domestic Violence and its half a page before you get the a link to the story on MSNBC.  CNN and FOX aren't even on the first page of results.  Try Mississippi Personhood Amendement and the big three aren't even on the first damn page.  But several Christian news sites and groups urging support sure are.  WTF people?  We're talking about not prosecuting domestic violence, a crime that disproportionately affects women.  And the whole personhood thing is not only an attack on abortion but also on birth control and a woman's right to control her own body.  Where's the coverage?  Where's the outrage?  Shouldn't someone at the big news companies, the ones that reach fucking millions of people, shouldn't someone there be reporting this shit?  Instead I'm getting my news from like-minded bloggers and feminist and progressive online news sites. 

Land of the free my ass.  I guess that only applies if you are a rich, white, capitalist, fundamentalist Christian. 

I need to go home and have a glass of wine before I burst a fucking blood vessel.  Later.


mythicalgirl: (wowee)
I have my first mammogram ever this afternoon.  No, I am not excited.  I don't expect it to be terrible, just uncomfortable as hell.  We'll see.

So, the vacation.  Which I got back from over a month ago!  Yes, I realize I am quite the slacker these days.  Let's just say that life has gotten in the way and leave it at that, hmm?

Our next to last port was Mazatlan, Mexico.  Since the day before was the 18-hour Copper Canyon odyssey we wisely decided to take it easy and booked a Shrimp Feast lunch instead of one of our usual adventures.  Although on the drive to the place we were wondering if this might be an adventure anyway - we went up one of the hills right in the middle of downtown Mazatlan with really narrow streets, not so great looking buildings, etc.  When we turned down this dirt & gravel alley and parked everyone was kind of wondering what the hell was going on.  Well, the villa where the Shrimp Feast is held is a private villa in a residential area.  Once you get past the outside of the building (kind of scary) the place was absolutely beautiful.  Owned by an 86 year old woman (turning 87 the weekend after we were there) she decided several years ago to share her love of the city by renting out the place a few times a year for this lunch.  The food was great with locally caught shrimp fixed three different ways and lots of traditional mexican food.  And while some people complained that the margaritas were weak, Dad and I both had Pacifico beer which was all kinds of awesome. 

The company at our table could have been better.  You know how some people just are not pleased no matter what?  Well, those were the people we sat with.  The drinks were weak.  The food at the lunch was so much better than the food on the ship.  The quality has gone down hill.  We didn't get an upgrade.  Wah, wah, wah.  I was not impressed and excused myself to go explore the house as soon as I was done eating.  Why go on a vacation if you are just going to bitch about everything?  If nothing makes you happy stay home so I don't have to f!cking hear you, OK?

Anyway, after getting back to the ship we pretty much just hung out for a while, reading.  I skipped dinner that night as I wasn't feeling all that fantastic - too much food!  Dad went by himself and evidently had dinner with a very nice couple from England. I probably would have had a good time but I wanted the time alone.  And there was no way I could have eaten another bite that day.  Dad said our table stewards were beside themselves that I was skipping dinner.  They were very happy to see me the next night.  So sweet!

Our last port day was Puerto Vallarta where we went snorkeling (Majahuitas) and to a small seaside village (Yelapa) for hiking and the beach.  Dad hiked, I did the beach.  It was my first time snorkeling and I'm already hooked.  I can't wait to go again!  The water was about 75 degrees F and it was a warm sunny day.  Just lovely.  I could have stayed out there all day.  The big excitement of the day was getting to the beach.  We let the hikers off at a dock and then had to take tenders to the beach.  The tenders were the size of a small fishing boat and the only way to get to the shore was to beach them.  That was super fun!  Yes, I know, I'm easily amused.  After getting to the beach I just snagged a beach chair and chilled until Dad got back from the hike.  Took a walk on the beach and then time to return to the boat.  On the way back to Puerto Vallarta the crew entertained us with music, dancing, and an open bar.  I was even up doing the conga and YMCA with the crew and some of the other passengers.  Me!  I was dancing!  In front of strangers!  And no, I hadn't had a lot to drink, just one beer.  What can I say?  I was having fun. 

The best part of the day was the crew.  If you are ever in Puerto Vallarta and want to do some sort of tour definitely look up Vallarta Adventures.  They did an excellent job and took such good care of everyone from the smallest child to the octogenarians.  Really first rate service and a ton of fun to boot.  Carlos was in the water snorkeling with us, diving down to the bottom and bringing up different sea life.  He brought up a sea star and a baby puffer fish, both of which I got a good look at.  He also was the guide ont he hike Dad went on.  Kind of part tour guide, part naturalist.  And the boat we were on is registered as a whale watching vessel as well so if we'd seen any whales we could have broken off our course to go watch them - from a respectful distance.  We didn't but wouldn't that have been cool? 

Our last two days were at sea so nothing much was going on. Dad and I both spent a lot of time on our balcony in the sun.  On our last day I got a cold.  At least I waited until the last day to get sick! 

I'll post some pictures and maybe one or two of the short videos Dad took soon.  Hope you enjoyed the recap.  It was a wonderful trip and I know I haven't done it justice.  I could go on and on, describing every single minute and posting tons of pics but nothing really beats being there, you know? 
mythicalgirl: (barman and robin)
It is Friday and I'm tired, cranky, and completely unmotivated.  So instead of messing around with my program - always a bad idea at 3:30 PM on a Friday - you get vacation blogging! 

So, where did I leave off?  Guaymas, Mexico!  After Loreto the next day was Guaymas, pronounced why-mas, in Sinaloa state, Mexico.  I have never seen so many saguaro and cardones cacti in my life!  Seriously - the things were everywhere.  As we came in to port we passed Cactus Island, which was completely covered in the things.  It looked awesome but I wouldn't want to try to hike there.  Guaymas is more of a city than a town - way bigger than Loreto.  Our tour guide made sure to mention that they are getting a WalMart soon - this is evidently a big deal.   We also saw such American standards as McDonalds and Burger King.  This was also the first place where I saw the drive through beer stores like Modelorama and Tecate Six.  I had no idea!  We also saw lots of men with very big guns.  Security was a big deal in all the ports we visited but Guaymas went over the top.  Police and military with assault rifles were everywhere! 

Out tour here was going horseback riding through the Sonoran desert and on the beach.  The stables were next door to a resort in San Carlos, just up the coast from Guaymas.  San Carlos is the tourist area, according to our guide Suzy.  It was also hit by a hurricane last fall and we saw plenty of evidence of the damage on the way up.  Roads washed out, houses and trees flattened - and right next door a place that looked untouched.  The stables were in good shape but evidently the water rose pretty high pretty fast due to one of the arroyos getting blocked with debris so the staff had to let the horses loose so they could get to higher ground.  After it was over they went into the desert and rounded them all up - didn't lose a single horse.  Amazing! 

The owner/operator of the stables is Astrid and she's from Switzerland.  She evidently came to Mexico 12 years ago to work at the resort as an accountant and ended up leaving 2 years later for the stables and has been there ever since.  Dad got Don Quixote, an older horse that likes lightweight riders.  I got Gordo, which means "Fat".  A lovely, if lazy, beast.  It's been probably 10 years since I've been on a horse and I loved every minute of it even if Gordo's only speed was barely faster than STOP!  The desert is amazing with all the cacti and prickly bushes with their flowers.  We also rode through the ruins of the movie set from Catch 22.  This meant more to Dad as he's seen the movie.  I've never seen it so it didn't mean much to me.  After a while we left the desert and went down to the beach where we rode past some amazing million dollar homes (most of them empty).  And I found that Gordo doesn't like to get his feet wet!  Every time a wave would get close he'd kind of hop / sidestep further up the beach.  The day was lovely and well worth it, even the pain in my legs the next day. 

The next morning we woke up real early - like 3:30 in the damn morning.  Or as I put it oh:dark:stupid (thanks to Jay Lake for that phrase).  After dressing quickly we went to a special breakfast that was laid out for the people going on the Copper Canyon train trip.  Then it was on to the buses for a two hour trip from Topolobampo to El Fuerte.  the sun was just coming up as we got to the train station in El Fuerte where the Chihuahua al Pacifico was waiting for us.  The train took us up into the canyons to Posada Barracas and the Hotel Mirador, perched on the side of the canyon.  A six hour trip.  One way.  Eight hours if you count the bus ride.  And another eight hours back.  We only got to spend about 2 hours at the top but really, a big part of the trip is the train ride itself, which was just too cool.  The train was quite nice - more comfortable than I expected - and the views were breathtaking.  Here, have a picture:



We had entertainment and lunch at the Hotel Mirador.  The food was really good.  The entertainment was a demonstration of traditional dances and games by the Tarahumara Indians who make their home in the canyons.  The women and children had their blankets spread out all over the place, selling handwoven baskets, masks, jewelry.  I bought a couple of small baskets.  Here, have another picture!



After a short hike to the rim for pictures and just plain gaping at the awesomeness it was time to go back to the train station and start our six hour trip back to El Fuerte.  And then 2 hours back to Topolobampo and the pier.  It was a long trip but I actually slept a little, mostly on the bus.  When we arrived back at the pier the ship's crew met us with champagne and we were applauded by our fellow passengers from the promenade deck. 

It was a really long day but absolutely awesome.  I've only been on a couple of other trains - narrow gage in Alaska and high-speed trains in Europe.  Never something like this.  We climbed to 7700' and back in the course of a day.  We passed through several zones of vegetation.  We got a small taste of the local culture.  And we got to stand on the rim of a canyon and look out over the convergence of three canyons with all the rock formations and vegetation.  Beautiful, man.  Just beautiful.  I would love to go back someday although I think this time I'll take the road from Chihuahua City instead of the train.  I'm glad I did it but once was enough for that.  18 hours makes for a really long day. 

Luckily the next day was Mazatlan where all we had planned was a Shrimp Feast for lunch.  I'll cover that and Puerto Vallarta in the next and final entry.  For now it is time to wrap things up here and head to the gym. 

Adios!
mythicalgirl: (OMG Corpse Bride)
Yes, everyone.  I'm finally getting around to starting this puppy. 

If you've been following along for a while then you know that day 1 of my vacation was pretty much a huge pile of FAIL!  It started out alright with me getting to upgrade to first class for the Indy to Dallas leg of my trip.  This, my friends, was the high point of much of the day.  It also saved my ass.  Long story short my original flight had a "mechanical problem" and never left Indy.  All passengers had to get rebooked on other flights.  There is nothing like watching 100+ people either waiting in line, on their cell phones, or both trying to find other flights.  The upgrade to first class meant that the gate attendant did all that for me, thank goodness.  I was able to let them do the work while I called Dad (and Mom) with regular updates.  I was also surprisingly calm through the whole thing.  Until I got to San Diego with no luggage.  That's when I had a teeny tiny meltdown.  Luckily everything turned out well and my bags arrived about 4 hours after I did.  A big Thank You to the guy at baggage claim who was really nice despite the fact that I was kind of a bitch since I was freaking out; to Blanca at the hotel for assuring me that the bags are almost always there by 11 pm; and to Patti in the brew pub for being so sympathetic and offering to go get me clothes.  You guys were great.  /waves

Day 2 of the vacation was embarkation day, which is always something of a treat.  This time was no different.  Hanging out in the hotel before the transfer to the ship is always quite telling - you get a feel for what type of cruise it is going to be from watching your fellow passengers.  Dad and I quickly decided that I was the youngest person there and he was quite possibly the second youngest!  OK, not really but wow did this cruise skew towards the older crowd.  I have never seen so many walkers and canes in one place in my life.  Still they are out there living life and doing things so more power to them.  Once we got to the dock we started getting some VIP treatment.  The upgrade to the deluxe veranda suite let us check in at a special desk so we bypassed the big long line.  Once on ship there was lunch and our first meeting with Nino, the best bartender/attendant on the high seas.  Hey, North Philli!  More about him later. 

And our deluxe cabin?  Oh. My. God.  The room was almost as big as my last apartment.  Almost 600 square feet and about the only thing missing was a kitchen.  We had a bar area, dressing room, sitting area, bathroom, and the biggest damn balcony ever.  Enough room out there for a table with 4 chairs, 2 chaise lounges and still room to walk about.  Plus the railing was all plexi so you could see the sea while lounging.  Bliss, man.  Pure bliss.  The free champagne was a nice bonus as well. 

The first day on the ship is always the day to explore, make reservations for dinners, etc.  As suite guests we also received our first invitations to special lunches, etc.  We skipped the cocktail meet and greet in the Neptune Lounge (open to suite guests only, thank you very much) as we had already made reservations for dinner at that time.  We did go to the Indonesian Lunch the next day at the Pinnacle Grill though and the food was amazing.  Who did we eat dinner with that first night? Karen and her friend, I think.  Two nice ladies, one from San Diego and the other from Chicago.  We never did figure out if they were friends of Friends but it was a lovely dinner with good conversation.  Night two was dinner at the Pinnacle (the same day we had lunch there) and it was an event, as always.  Really, you can't eat there in under 2 hours. 

Our first shore day was in Cabo San Lucas.  Here's a picture of Land's End:



Here we went whale watching on a 1920's tall ship.  The whole idea was kind of like a pirate ship although I don't think the Talofa was every a pirate vessel.  The ship was nice although there were too many people on the tour.  Not over capacity of the ship but too many to have on deck all at one time.  The seas were a bit rough at times but we did see whales.  I don't have any pics but I'll see if Dad will let me post one of his at some point.  We went whale watching a few years back in Alaska and one thing we both noticed was that this trip was way different.  Not as many whales, for one.  And in Mexico as soon as someone spotted one all these small ships would just flock to the area and surround it.  Not a good idea since you never know where the whale is going to surface.  Plus it's harasment and many of these were mothers with their young.  I felt really sorry for them.  Stupid humans.  I want to see them but keep a respectful distance.  There was even some idiot and his girlfriend on a Jet Ski getting right up close with a mama whale in the bay.  Stupid, stupid, stupid!  She was like 5 times bigger than that Jet Ski.  Imagine if she'd decided to come up right beneath it?  Still it was a lovely day.  I love being out on the water with the sun and the wind and the spray in my face.  Who knew? 

I honestly can't remember what we did after we got back to the ship.  Probably drinks at some point. :-)
No, Dad and are aren't heavy drinkers or anything.  But we do like to kick back with an adult beverage from time to time and the guys onboard tend to make great drinks.  This may have been the night I had a lemon drop, I can't remember. 

The next day was Loreto and our failed attempt at sea kayaking.  OK, Dad could probably have made it but after about 5 minutes of trying to get past the surf I gave up.  But I'm getting ahead of myself.  Loreto, Baja California, Mexico has to be one of the smallest ports I have ever seen.  The ship is at anchor so you have to take a tender into the marina.  And the marina is small!  I mean really tiny.  Other than the tender boats from the ship everything else was like a two person fishing boat.  The big draw here was the pelicans.  Lots and lots of pelicans.  Dive bombing the marina for fish.  It was the coolest thing.  Dad has a video that I will post once I get a copy.  The town of Loreto is small and very charming.  More like a village, really.  They are just now starting to build a tourist industry so it is still really untouched in a lot of ways.  As Diane from the Piano Bar put it "Those charming tree-lined streets were quite charming". 

Our excursion this day was to The Inn Of Loreto Bay to go kayaking.  Only problem was the wind had the bay whipped up quite nicely.  According to one of the guys on the beach the bay is usually like glass.  Uh uh, not the day we were there.  Nice waves, kind of windy, and the kayak had no back support at all.  I couldn't keep my feet braced and trying to was putting way to much pressure on my hips so they were screaming after just a few minutes.  Plus to keep yourself from being dumped you have to stay pointed into the waves - Don't Turn Sideways!  Well every time I got hit by a wave I would struggle to stay straight then another would hit me and I'd end up Sideways!  I didn't capsize although I have no idea how I didn't.  Five minutes in, soaked, tired and in pain I looked ahead to see that some of the others were also struggling but that nearly everyone was ahead of me except Dad who was bringing up the rear.  Then I ended up sideways to another damn wave and said screw it, turned around and headed to shore.  As I passed Dad I told him that my hips were screaming and I just couldn't do it.  He came in to shore with me so that I wouldn't be on the beach by myself.  The resort was nice but pretty deserted.  A couple of minutes later Judy and Linda (Dad, is that her name?) came back to shore as well.  They couldn't do it either.  So instead of kayaking the 4 of us wandered around the golf course paths and hung out on the beach.  I still like kayaking but now I know I need some sort of back support and I just do not have the upper body strength yet for sea kayaking. 

The dryer just buzzed so that's it for this entry.  I'll post more later, including Guaymas (pronounced like whymas) and Copper Canyon. 
Good Night!
mythicalgirl: (leaking karma)
I made it home on time - to 12 inches of snow. 

I caught a cold on the last day of the cruise which meant flying back on Monday with a head full of snot and a low fever.  Got in around 11:00 PM to find that my luggage made it home with me but beaten all to crap - they broke one of the wheels off so I had to drag the damn thing along behind me through the snow.  Dug my car out in the parking lot only to get home and get the damn thing stuck in a drift in my own driveway. 

I got home at midnight.  I actually made it into the house at 12:30 AM after shoveling a path in my driveway and getting my car unstuck.  Then couldn't sleep due to the above mentioned snotty head.  I meant to transfer the pictures off my camera and start the vacation recap but, yeah, the only thing I did Tuesday was go grocery shopping and do my laundry.  I took yesterday off work as I still couldn't breathe - knocked myself out with NyQuil instead. 

Today I am back to work and slowly but surely catching up on everything I missed.  More snow is expected this weekend as two more storms move through.  Hopefully I'll get a chance sometime in the next few days to finish digging out my driveway.  I haven't even tried to find my sidewalk yet.  Right now the only thing I have scheduled for this weekend is a haircut so I hope to get the recap started and some pics up by the end of the weekend.  Going to the gym is on hold until I can breathe again.   

Now if you'll excuse me I have to get an emergency code change to the tester and then do a conference call. 
mythicalgirl: (nap time)
This is going to be quick.  A couple more days left on the cruise, both sea days.  Other than one minor glitch with the sea-kayaking, as in I couldn't do it, this vacation has been great!  I've had a ton of fun and done lots of things I've either never done before or haven't done for years.  These last two days are for relaxing.  There is a deck chair somewhere on this ship with my name on it. 

I'll be back in Indy on Monday but super late at night.  Hopefully I won't have to dig my car out of long term parking at midnight.  I have no idea how much snow is still on the ground at home.  Tuesday I'll catch up on my f-list as well as blog the vacation.  Sorry I haven't kept up but I've been too busy having fun! 

Then Wednesday it is back to the real world and working for a living.  *sigh* 

Vacation recap will commence in a few days.  Now I'm thinking perhaps a nap or curling up with a good book.  Later!
mythicalgirl: (universe)

After two days of hell (dead furnace and travel fail) yesterday ended up being just a fabulous day. 

The ship is great, as usual.  And our deluxe veranda suite is just amazing.  

I had a mojito, split a bottle of champagne with Dad (it was in the room and free!), had wonderful food and slept like a baby.  The same rolling of the ship that makes some people sea sick tends to put me to sleep.  Who knew? 

Today so far I've had breakfast, gone to the gym, and gotten cleaned up.  That's about it.  At noon we have a lunch with the Captain, one of those perks for the passengers in the suites.  Later there is a meeting about one of our excursions and then probably hanging out on deck until it is time for dinner.

The relaxation never ends!  Yes, I'm spoiled.  I could get used to this. 


Travel Fail

Feb. 5th, 2010 09:53 am
mythicalgirl: (My Day)
Well, I made it to San Diego, barely.  Yesterday was not one of my better travel days.  I got up at something like 4:30 am and was at the airport by 6:15.  Everything was going fine then the gate attendants made the announcement that the plane had a maintenance issue.  Uh-oh.  At first we were delayed until 10:00 - two hours late.  Then they had to get a part, which they didn't have locally, and it would be 1:00 pm before the part got there.  Thank goodness I'd upgraded to first class.  They did all my re-booking for me.  When they had the first delay they rebooked my connection in Dallas.  Then with the second delay they had to re-book my flight out of Indy to DFW.  I ended up leaving Indy at 11:35 EST and getting into San Diego at 3:30 PST.  Twelve hours total in airports and on planes. 

Then they lost my bag. 

I was at the baggage claim here in San Diego, just watching that thing go round and round and not seeing my bag.  I somehow managed not to have a complete breakdown (which I'm attributing to having flown first class all the way - much more relaxing than slave, I mean coach class).  I did the whole thing with reporting the bag missing, etc.  It arrived here at the hotel last night at 8:00 PM.  Thank God or whatever Deity was listening because if I hadn't had my bag today I would be curled up in a little ball crying my eyes out.  Poor Dad - I don't think he would find dealing with a hysterical me as much of a vacation. 

*And a big thanks to Patti, our waitress last night, who commiserated with the lost baggage and offered to go get me clothes after she got off work if my bag didn't show up.  I don't know if she was serious or not but the offer went a long way to making me feel better.  That and two pints of beer. 

All is now well, the bellhop has picked up the bags and we're hanging out down here in the internet lounge while we wait for it to be time to go to the pier.  San Diego is beautiful as California always is although I'm bummed we didn't get here around noon local time yesterday as planned so that we had time to do some exploring.  Maybe next time.  I do have relatives out here after all.  I should come out and see Grandma and explore Southern California. 

The ship leaves at 5:00 this afternoon, hopefully before the weather moves in (rain is coming).  It is cool here but still way warming than Indy, which is getting walloped by snow as I type this. 

Stay tuned for more updates as the week progresses - unless I'm just having way too much fun! 
mythicalgirl: (wowee)
It is just less than 16 hours before my plane leaves for Dallas, Tx, where I'll meet up with Dad (providing my flight is on time) and then head out to San Diego.  An overnight there, to catch up from spending the day in airports and on planes, and then Friday we board the ship and cruise on down to Mexico for 10 days.  Plus we got an opportunity to grab a deluxe suite for less than $300 more per person and we, well rather Dad, took it.  This after we'd already gotten $200 back on our original price and an upgrade.  So in the end for a big whopping $98 more than what we'd originally reserved we are now in a deluxe veranda suite.  Which is twice as big as our previous cabin assignment.  This kind of thing does not happen often - I'm sure the recession is to blame, at least in part.  Oh and the opportunity?  Came last night at 6:30 pm!

Woke this morning to no heat.  Sometime in the early morning hours not too much before my alarm went off the furnace died.  There was panic but it was all internal.  I managed to call the heating people and schedule to have them come out this morning, call work to let them know I was starting my vacation a day early, and call Dad to let him know the latest - all without freaking out.  I was freaked but I managed to stay outwardly calm because really, what else was I going to do?  It had to be fixed, and fixed NOW, because I can't leave for two weeks with no heat, not living in Indiana.  Luckily the furnace guy was here about an hour later and found the problem - the ignitor had gone kaput. 

Here's the fun thing about my house for those of you just joining us.  My place is a small house, a little under 1400 square feet, and was built about 15 years ago.  One previous owner.  Who never fixed anything the way it was supposed to be fixed.  I swear this woman either had her son do the repairs or hired a really crappy handyman.  Most of the things I've had to fix in the last two years have been because the previous repair was crappy or worse.  If a repair was done it was half-assed or jerry-rigged, or the wrong part was used, or in the process of doing the fix they screwed up something else.  In all other cases no repair was done - things were just turned off and ignored.  Slowly but surely I'm finding all these things and getting them fixed but I wish they'd been found on the inspection.  The previous owner would not have fixed them - she balked at fixing any of the things that did show up on the inspection or providing any money at closing so that I could do the repairs (In the end the realtors forwent some of their commission to get the repairs done and the seller paid me $$$ at closing for the dishwasher that didn't work but she refused to fix or replace).  So yeah, even if these things had been found I doubt she would have been willing to fix them and she was not open to negotiating $$ at closing - it took her realtor (also her son-in-law) to convince her that if she didn't pony up for the dishwasher I was going to walk away from the deal that there was nothing she'd be able to do about it because she wasn't negotiating in good faith and had lied about the damn thing - saying it worked then after then inspection came in admitting she'd known for months that it didn't work. 

So, back to the furnace.  The heating guy finds that the ignitor has gone bad and when he pulls it out....it is the wrong part for my furnace. And it has been "made" to fit.  He was amazed that the damn thing had been working for the last couple of years since I bought the place.  He was surprised - I was not.  And we both crossed out fingers that the correct part would still fit and he'd be able to fix the thing.  Thankfully the crappy-ass job the previous owner had done didn't screw things up too badly (a first!) and the correct part works.  I have heat again!  YAY!  A little over two hours and $210 dollar later everything was fixed and I was back to doing laundry, working a little bit from home, and packing. 

Way more excitement than I ever wanted the day before leaving town.  Really.  I'll be happy if something like this never happens again. 

Now I'm going to kick back, drink a well-earned beer, and go to bed early since I have to be at the airport at an ungodly hour of the morning. 

Possible entries and maybe pics while I'm gone.  There will definitely be both once I get back. 

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