Thursday, April 27, 2006

the cruise

Carnival ship Sensation; 3 days/nights out of Port Canaveral, FL.
Had a great time, relaxed, ate a lot of food.
Played basketball, sat in the hot tubs, chatted with other passengers.
Ran around the exercise track, played mini-golf, watched a couple shows.
One night they had a Mexican Buffet, with octopus ceviche -- little purple octopuses, tomatoes, onions, peppers, cilantro, lime juice -- I ate about a gallon of it, with tortilla chips.
We rented a scooter in Nassau, tooled around the city, bought souveniers, snowcones, and pirated CDs.
Snorkeled and swam with stingrays.
Lay in the sun.
The cabin steward made animals out of the towels, which was really cool. They make up your room about 3 times a day.
When I get some pics developed, I'll post them.

And just to show that MomentsOfAdequacy offers extra value, here is your Complimentary Cruise Line Analysis (which no one cares about):

I had been cruising a couple times before, with Hannah -- that was on Royal Carribbean, which is spozed to be a cut above Carnival, but I found the value on Carnival very good.

- The amenities were very comparable.
- The excursions were basically the same, altho on RC lunch was always provided; on the excursion Carnival set us up with, we had to buy our own lunch.
- The ship band was great on both lines.
- The wait service was better on RC, but the cabin service was better on Carnival.
- On RC the other guests had been whiter, a little more well-off, dressed more formally for dinner -- none of which made any difference to David or me. I didn't find the RC guests snooty, exactly, but I found the Carnival passengers a little friendlier and completely non-pretentious. I expected more drunk college students, but didn't see much of that.
- The food and the entertainment were far superior on RC, but the cost on Carnival was 60% of what we would have paid on RC, so I wasn't complaining.
- Carnival charged for soft drinks ($4/day).
- On Carnival, the gratuity was added automatically to your bill; on RC, tipping was theoretically optional, but the suggested amount was the same as what Carnival took ($10/day/person).
All in all, I was very satisfied -- I'd go again on either one.

where's waldo

Sorry I've been away. Hope everyone's getting along okay in spite.
Very busy the last few weeks, no time to keep up on blogs (mine or other ppls').
Will try to do better in the future, but probably won't.

So here's what I've been doing, mostly:
1) working
2) getting the house ready for sale
3) took my son on a 3-day cruise to Nassau, Bahamas. I had promised him some time away, just the two of us. He was stressing out the wk b4 last, so I found a great price on last-minute tickets and we went.
4) yesterday signed final divorce papers
5) looking for a place to live
6) wishing i was rich. money can't buy happiness, but if you're *already* a happy person, i bet having money totally kicks a**. that' s my theory, anyway. at the very least, having money eliminates a lot of inconveniences...

Monday, April 10, 2006

I have gas!

Propane ran out last week.
Gas company didn't fill it because the auto-charge to my credit card failed (remember how my client hadn't paid me?)
So on Thursday I called to say "what up?" and they said they needed a cashier's check for $897. Which was no problem, except that they also couldn't come out to my area until Monday.
So it was a cold weekend with no hot water or heat in the house.
But now we have both, so we're happy.
The End.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

i am chivalrous, but this is boring

Loooong road trip last wk, as previously mentioned. Because I was so busy (and a procrastinator) I ended up having to do laundry at midnight. The hotel was out of quarters, so I walked a few blocks to 6th Street where young people hang out and dance and listen to music, and stuff stays open late.

I didn't feel like trying to negotiate the vending of some cheesy comestibles quarters with a busy bartender in a loud club while surrounded by drunk hyper students, so I walked around looking for a convenience store.

As I crossed the street, a girl looked at me and said "come here", and grabbed my arm.
She was completely lit up and I had no idea what her deal was, but she started to explain that she was drunk (really?) and had lost her friends. Could I help her find them?
I suggested I might not be that helpful since I didn't know what they looked like.

Then she asked if I had a car, and would I drive her home to the north side. This was annoying because
a) I was really tired, she lived miles away, it was midnight and I still had laundry to do, and
b) Now I was feeling responsible, because if she asked the wrong person to take her home and turned up dead or missing the next day it would be my fault.

Eventually she volunteered that she knew someone at Buffalo Billiards who could give her a ride, so I agreed to walk her there. As we walked the 6 blocks to BB, she started to stumble and took my hand. Somehow I had gone from doing laundry to walking hand in hand with a drunk 20-something down 6th street. I thought that was weird enough, but then we had this conversation:

Girl: I've had a really lousy day. My husband got out of jail today and came to my house even though there's a restraining order.

Me [dropping her hand]: Girl, you're walking down the street holding *my* hand, and you've got a husband who's been in jail? Thanks a lot.

Girl: Don't worry, I called the cops and he's back in jail.

Me: What about his friends?

Girl: He doesn't have any friends.

She smiled happily and took my hand again. I walked her the remaining block to Buffalo Billiards, looking over my shoulder for tattooed ex-cons wearing expressions of jealous rage.

The doorman at BB confirmed that she was known and would be taken care of.

Then I got some quarters and went back to my hotel.

phone message

When I got off the plane last night I had a voicemail waiting from Samantha saying "We missed you, blah blah blah... and could you stop and get milk and diet root beer on your way home?"
At the end of the msg she added "... and I hope you didn't die in a horrible plane crash and have to eat your survivors..."

This is a beautiful example of ADD in action, and it made me smile. By the time she got to the word "crash", she'd already forgotten it was horrible and that I had died. Mentally she had already moved on to examples of plane crashes and the one where the rugby team ate each other in the Andes. (They didn't eat the survivors, BTW -- just some of the bodies of the non-survivors...)

Anyway, she's brilliant and I love her, but just try explaining anything that takes longer than, say, one second to communicate or understand...

Saturday, April 01, 2006


When in danger or in doubt
Run in circles, scream and shout.

This has been a challenging week. There were numerous things to be happy about, but I’m having none of that. I choose rather to focus on the sad, stressful, and inconvenient events and issues. To wit:

* Four separate serious personal issues that I’m trying to wade through right now that can’t be published in this forum.

* A little girl in my church died. Her funeral was this morning.

* A past mistake of mine reached out to bite me.

* I gravely insulted a close friend.

* Another close friend is having a really rough time with an Ex who is being threatening and unreasonable.

* Taxes are due.

* I’m behind on numerous work deliverables.

* The IRS wants $500 for some sin that I’m not aware of, but they’re probably right about.

* I have to get my house ready to show/sell, and find a place to live afterward.

* I have conflicting priorities at a particular client site; I did not manage that issue (or my time) well, and the client brought it to my attention.

* My main client took two weeks longer than expected to pay me; I’m over the edge financially right now until I sell the house, so that was less than convenient.

* I just spent 11 days on the road. A scheduling miscommunication means I will have less than 2 days at home before I ship out again tomorrow for 4 more days. Not a fun thing to have to tell David, whose depression and separation anxiety are exacerbated by my absence.

* I neglected to communicate properly with Hannah re next week’s travel, meaning she had to cancel plans she had made. (FTR, she was gracious about it.)

* Sam & David were really unkind to each other today. The thing I want most in life is for my kids to be happy, and often I’m powerless to make that happen. David blames me for having to work; Sam blames me for not having enough time to spend the day with her exclusively.

* I have a list as long as my arm of to-do’s to finalize the divorce (eg, separate bank accts, attend a parenting class, get cars fixed, submit financial documents, etc)

* Trying to make it back from Texas last night, my flight had mechanical problems. All of us with Denver connections missed them. We were taken off the plane in order to try other options, but the agents seemed flustered and disorganized. They didn’t prioritize the line, or re-group us by destination, just handled people in the order they lined up. After a half hour they had only serviced 3 people out of 20 or so. I finally walked to the front of the line and said “There is an America West flight leaving for Seattle via Las Vegas in 20 minutes which you have agreed to cover me on, but if you process me in order I will not make that flight.” They printed my ticket and that of the other Seattle passenger. Most in the line understood, but I got some pretty sour looks from others, even after I apologized. The other Seattle passenger and I ran 20 gates and made the AW flight, hot and sweaty. The gate agent had to shut the jetway door temporarily to handle us; when another passenger questioned it, I said “If this was Russia, you might be able to bribe him to open it.” The agent frowned and said “I don’t take bribes.” (?!?) Then he mixed up our names (the other passenger’s *first* name was Torre) and gave us both the same seat assignment for the second leg. Luckily when we got to Las Vegas there was room to fix things, but it was a stress all the same. My bag of course did not make it to Seattle with me.

Also: I don’t actually know what “to wit” means, or how to use it. Sue me.