Wednesday, August 30, 2006

The Good the bad and the Ugly (but mostly good!)

I had the best bad day yesterday! Leave it to the knitting community to turn what would have been a disastrous day into a great one.

I did not have a good morning yesterday – I am back in Albuquerque at the Forest Service and I was having technical difficulties at work – and dealing with some very difficult people in a session and generally feeling very grumpy. I was upset with the world! (Ok – I was PMS’ing and blaming it on everyone else)

Isn't this a cool set of statues in front the building by the way?

Anyway - I had been looking forward to hooking up with the Albuquerque Sit and Knit since I found out I was going to be out here. I had big plans to meet up and talk yarn and knitting. So – I left the work and the stress and frustration behind and headed off to the Flying Star café.

I had the best time!! The night totally made up for all the troubles of my morning. I went from being as frustrated as I had ever been at work – so laughing and talking with some great ladies. I met some fellow bloggers – Little Hedgehog aka Noelle, Beth, and many others I can't even remember all their blog names!

I was not the only newbie there last night – I was joined by Daryl and Bentley. Dylan was nice enough to bring some knitting mags and books that were going to be thrown out by a local library. Throw out knitting books! NO way! I picked up two great ones from her – One on knitting basics that has a wonderful stitch dictionary and basics on how to knit clothes without a pattern! And I also got a beautifully illustrated book on Kaffe’s colorful knit designs and some knitting mags. (You can never have too many knitting mags!)

Here is Daryl (on the left) and some other knitters

I also got a very nice surprise while I was there. I met Cynthia – my original Secret Pal! I knew she lived in New Mexico – but I didn’t know she was actually in Albuquerque. It was such a surprise to get an email from her last week in response to an intro email I sent to the Albuquerque sit and knit’s yahoo group. She wrote me asking “Is the same Jody that was my secret pal?”

I couldn’t believe it! What a small world!

I didn’t know if I would see her last night – but then she showed up and it was so great! Apparently everyone there already knew the story and everyone was like “This is Jody!?”

It was too funny.
I swear – I could go anywhere in the country – and if I found some knitters to hang out with - I would probably know someone there (or at least have read their blog) or know someone who knows them. The 6 degrees of the knitting world! It was great to catch up with her.

I was also very excited to meet a fellow English major/knitter/jewelry maker. Bentley shows up and is loud and talkative (yeah – just like me!) and we immediately hit it off!
Here's Bentley acting goofy and Noelle showing us how to use a drop spindle. You can even see my new sock in the bottom left corner - I'm using a vibrant Trekking XXL yarn.

(Yes - I actually tried it and oh no! I liked it!)

Anyway - Crazy minds think alike and Bentley and I were immediately joking around and comparing hobbies, books and anecdotes. Bentley has graciously agreed to show me around some of the beading stores Albuquerque has to offer – Yeah!

A wonderful piece of raspberry chocolate fudge cake and a coffee later – I was yawning and it was 10:30pm. I decided I had better make my escape before I turned into a pumpkin (since I was still on east coast time – it felt like 12:30!

I said my goodbyes and headed to my car – I put the key in the ignition and….. click, click, click…. Nothing.

My car was dead! I had been having problems with my rental car since I got it. The ignition switch was broken and you could pull the key out when the car was running! I apparently had left the key in the middle position – the car wasn’t running – but the auxiliary functions must have still been on – because the battery was drained. I go back inside Flying Star and beg for assistance and several people came to my rescue! I am so lucky to have met such nice people. Bentley immediately took control of the situation and organized a hunt for jumper cables. We tried on set that works through the cigarette lighter – but that didn’t work. We then found another set of “real” jumper cables and tada! My car started right up.

I gave hugs all around to my saviors – and made my way back to my hotel. I called Avis to tell them their stupid car was broken and they told me I could bring it back for a new one. SO – at 11:30 at night – I drove my tired butt back to the airport – got a new car – and then drove back to the hotel. I was so wired when I got back – I couldn’t get to sleep for another couple hours. I finally took a Tylenol PM and crashed around 1:30am. 6:30 this morning came way too fast for me!!

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Old Town

We finished up our work today and took the evening off! My co-worker and I went to Old Town Albuquerque this evening. It was everything you would expect an typical New Mexican city to be. Well - from the most touristy perspective possible - but it was still really cool to see.

Driving off of Rio Grande Ave and passing the Walgreen and Lotaburger - you turn the corner into the old square and all that neon and modern day rush is gone - replaced with dried chilli peppers, strolling marriachi bands and the smell of spicy food.

There is a beautiful church in the square - Iglesia de San Felipe de Neri. It appeared to be glowing in the evening twilight.

We also did plenty of touristy shopping and exploring. Here are just a few of the places we went...

One of the shop keepers I met was actually from Bel Air Maryland! I bought a few trinkets - as I always do on trips - and got some little gifts for my hubby and my family :)

I actually had a chance to do some knitting yesterday and today. Not too much progress - but here's my Clapotis.

I love having all the stitch markers hanging off it. It's like a big ornament!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

New Mexican sunsets

I’m in Albuquerque this week. Working crazy hours and not really enjoying myself too much. It took me forever to get here on Sunday. I left the house at 1:00 and didn’t get to my hotel until 8:30. That is NOT going to happen again because I decided I am not going to travel on Sundays anymore. Ha! I am going to leave Monday – get paid for my travel time and then work Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday and leave Friday.

I am definitely not used to this travel for work thing. Anyone out there travel for work weekly? Any advice?

I packed lots of knitting –
1. a Clapotis that I started using some gorgeous sky blue yarn I got at the Sheep and Wool – I hate to say it – but I don’t remember the name of the place I got it from. It didn’t have a tag and I forgot to write down the name of the place. Oh well – I’ll just look for her again next year.
2. the Flower Basket Shawl – I’m using a fingering weight Alpaca in charcoal gray. (This is after trying to use lace weight and nearly pulling out my hair when I dropped a stitch!)
3. the mittens I started at the last Sunday in the Salon at Woolwinders – but duh! I forgot to pack the pattern!!) – I’m using left over wool from other projects.
4. My magic loop sock. I am using the gorgeous handspun from Mindseyeyarn – which I totally love.

I haven’t had much time for knitting anything though! Except for the plane ride – where I knit on the Clapotis for 4 hours straight – I really haven’t had much time. Weekly travelers – let me ask you another question…. Do you have time to knit? I found that I get out of work – go to dinner and by the time I get back to the hotel – it’s nearly time to go to sleep!
I spoke to my hubby last night and he said my older dog Bailey is taking me being gone really hard. He is acting up – (ate one of my knitting needles, ate puppies food and threw up!) which he normally never does. He said the puppy (Hurley) is also acting weird – instead of being his normal rambunctious self – he’s been quiet and laying in his bed – instead of wanting to play constantly like he usually does. It’s like the two dogs switched places!

I feel so bad that they miss me! My husband – put me on speaker phone and told me to talk to the dogs – well they apparently heard me and they both perked up and started wagging their tails and looking around.

I miss my boys!!

I did have a good dinner last night - went to a place called El Pinto and had some New Mexican cuisine. Pretty tasty! I wish I had gotten done sooner - I would have tried to find the Albuquerque sit and knit. I didn't get back to the hotel until 8:30! I swear - I have no idea what happens to the time out here.

Oh well - there's always next week.

I miss everyone back east!!

Friday, August 18, 2006

I'm fine!!

I got a call from my doctor (well the flunky again) and the scan was fine! Thank you everyone for all your hugs and support - I'm very glad everything is ok

I went to my sit and knit last night and was very happy to see Shelby there! We also had two other new comers - we are growing larger every week - yeah!

I worked on my second mitten last night - but I didn't get very far - too much gabbing for me!

After sit and knit I went with my friend Holly and her daughter for a quick Geocache. I made the mistake of mentioning this hobby/sport to her and now she is obsessed!! I let her borrow the GPS for a trip to Pittsburgh - I hope she finds lots of treasure! I am married to a nerd who loves gadgets - so if you are too or are one yourself - here's the scoop on Geocaching... it's even fun for a non gadget nerd - at least it gives you something to go out looking for while on a hike!

I leave for Albuquerque on Sunday - I am going to be traveling for work quite a bit in the next few months. I actually looked into a sit and knit in Albuquerque and I think I found one - yeah! I hope to meet some fellow knitters while I am out there because God knows I can't be without my stitch and bitch buddies for too long!

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

My saga comes to an end.... hopefully

I should have written about this sooner - but I didn't.... Let me catch you up on my week...

Swollen Saga Part 1

Last week Wednesday, I took one bite of my Taco Bell Grilled Stuffed Burrito and my jaw swelled up like a balloon. Do you know that little zap you sometimes get in the back of your jaw when you eat something especially zesty? Well I was getting that feeling continuously as I tried to eat this burrito. It just wasn't happening.

"Maybe I've been poisoned!" I think to myself. "Maybe I ate a bug!" (it was Taco Bell after all.) I figured it would go away.

Dinner time that same day - I try to eat and again - zaps galore and more swelling. This time I hadn't even needed to actually eat the food - just the smell of it got me salivating and thus swelling again. This totally sucks.

I immediately log onto my computer and google my symptoms... swollen jaw, saliva, pain, etc.

I find this...article

and this...article

Nothing like freaking yourself out! To quote the first article...

"Mechanical removal of calculi and ductal plasty on strictures by utilizing dormia or segura baskets and angioplasty balloon catheters have been successful for treatments of these conditions."


Angioplasty balloon catheter my butt! You're not sticking a balloon in me!

Or - mumps? Isn't that supposed to be what I got shots for as a small child? It can be that.

Finally - I see this article

There is a handy dandy self diagnostic question section at the bottom. Oh a quiz! I like quizes.... Except when the answer is to go to the doctor! I answered yes to more than one of these questions and as you can see - each and every one tells you to call your doctor.

So I decide if I did indeed swollow a poisonous bug I better call my doctor.

Me - "Hi - um my jaw is swollen and stuff..."

Dr - "OK - you better come in and see me"

Me - "ok" (duh)

So - the next day (Thursday) I go in and he looks at my neck and jaw and has no idea what I'm talking about when I try to describe the "zap" in my jaw and decides I need to give blood in order to find out what is really wrong.


Swollen Saga Part II - Friday
Giving blood.

I hate needles. I know most people hate needles - I mean come on - who runs around saying - "Hey - please stick me with a needle!" (Well I guess these people may)

But - I mean I really hate needles. I have non -exisistant veins in my arms. The people who take blood never ever beleive me either. They're all like, "I am a professional - I can find your vein." and then they stick me like 4 times and can't find it. yeah - told you so.

So - they finally give up and use my hand. By now - my nerves are shot and I just want the whole thing to be over. It hurt like crazy to get stuck in the hand - even more than the missed tries in my arm. But they do eventually get the needle in and they start taking blood....

and more blood...

and more ...

after 5 vials - I start to feel a little faint. But there is no way I'm saying anything - because then they'll stop and have to do it all over again. (trust me - I've made that mistake before)

So - I say nothing and wait until they are finished.

Then - I finally say - "I think I'm going to faint."

Tech guy - "Uh - do you want some water or something?"

Me - "Yes.... something"

Tech Guy - looks around for water - finding none - stares at me some more. The finally goes out of the room and comes back with a wet paper towel.

Me - "I'm supposed to drink that?"

Tech guy - "uh...."

Me - "Can I have a drink of water or juice or something" - while I'm holding my head and moaning slightly trying desperately not to faint..

Tech guy finally brings me some water - in one of those paper cones that drips all over. I sip it and start to feel better - and then tech guy looks at me and hands me my chart and tells me I need to give it to the nurse on my way out.

I shakily get up and stagger like a drunken person into the waiting area where I nearly fall into a chair. I regain some energy and hand in my chart - then make a bee line (more of a zigzag line in my present state) to the vending machines and buy a coke. I sipped the sugary coke until my hands stop shaking and I am well enough to drive.

I go to work....

Swollen Saga Part III
Phone call - Friday evening

I get a phone call from my doctor (or rather someone he left a message with) the next day with the results of my blood work. I have an elevated level of Amylase and I need to schedule a CT scan of my neck and jaw.


Me - "What does that mean?"

Flunky on the phone - "I'm not sure ma'am - it just says you have an elevated level of Amylase."

Me - "What the heck is Amylase?"

Flunky - " I'm not sure ma'am - the doctor just left me this note. He left a few hours ago."

Me - "...."

Flunky - "you need to schedule a CT scan"

Me - great

So - I call and I can't get in until next Wednesday. It being only Friday - I marvel at my luck and look foward to my wonderful swollen weekend.


Swollen Saga Part IV
The CT scan - today - Wednesday

I have been dreading this CAT scan all weekend. My jaw is actually feeling better and I tried to get out of going - but my doctor (or rather Flunky on the phone) said I better go anyway since it was already scheduled.

Great... remind me to procrastinate more often.

So - I go.

I have to sign all these forms and acknowledge that I understand that I may have a severe reaction to the iodine they inject me wity (inject????!!! - that means more needles!) and that they aren't responsible for any nausea, vomiting, rash, painful outbreak, loss of limb or death! that may occur during the procedure.

Radiology chic - "Don't worry about those warning - they make it all seem scarier than it is."

Me - "Um - ok - thanks..."

I sign my life away and walk inside to the CT scan room.

Now - If you've never seen a CT machine - let me explain what it looks like. Picture the world's biggest dounut (mmm, dounuts) and a long board sticking out the middle and a loud swooshing sound all around. Kind of like a washing maching or something.

I climb aboard and the two radiology chics are chit chatting about not having enough solution left for the rest of the scans today. And joke about how they can use half water or somthing.... Great!

Radiology chic #1 starts to explain the procedure to me and tries to find a vein in my arms. No I tell her - don't. Just do the one in my hand.

This time (for once) she actually listens to me and puts in the IV in my hand. Man that hurt! It must have been a bigger needle than usual or something - because it felt like a knitting needle was going into my hand. Ouch!

Once it was in there and taped down it wasn't so bad - but I could feel liquid going into my veins.

me - "is that the Iodine?"

Radiology chic = "No - that's just a saline solution - we'll add the iodine later - but first we need to get some pictures of you without the iodone. When we add the iodine - you may feel a warm sensation as it travels through your body. You may feel like you have to pee - but you won't actually have to - it's just the iodine entering your bladder."

Me - "*Gulp*..."

Radiology chic - "Ok - are you ready? This should only take about 15 - 20 minutes."

Me - "that long!"

Radiology chic - "You'll be fine!"

She positions me and tries to get my head in just the right place and then straps me in. My hands are down at my sides and my head is on this neck pillow thing to keep it straight and my legs are on this knee pillow thing. I wouldn't say I was all comfy and ready to go - but I guess I was ready for something.

She leaves the room (which always makes you feel wonderful doesn't it? Even the dentist will leave the room when they take X-rays of your teeth ... I want to leave the room too!!) and goes into the little room behind the glass windows where radiology chic #2 and two other radiology dudes are all watching me.

The machine starts to do its thing. I just keep my eyes shut and try to pretend I'm in my own bed. And that the sound I hear is my washing machine turning out wonderful felted bags, and that is my IV is only.... (wait.... there's no way to explain that one away!)

Anway - it wasn't too bad.... yet...

Eventually radiology chic #1 comes back in and says - now she is going to start the Iodine. Again - she tells me - I'll feel a warm sensation as it travels through me.

She leaves again and I feel the iodine run into my hand, up my arm, into my chest and into my heart, down my legs and into my stomach.

Oh no...

Oh no - my stomach...

I am going to throw up. I just know it.

Keep calm - I try to tell myself - it will pass...

It doesn't pass....

I am definitely going to throw up.

Me - "I'm gonna throw up!"

Radiology chic (who apparently can hear me even though she's in the little room behind glass) - "Breath through your mouth"

Me - "ok - but I'm really going to throw up"

I now start gagging - trying not to barf all over myself and the machine - which probably costs more than I make in a year or ten.

Radiology chic # 1 dashes into the room while I struggle with the bindings keeping me down on the table. She finally undoes them in time for me to puke into the handy little puke tray she brought with her. I'm still puking when...

- radiology chic #2 runs in

- radiology dudes #1 and #2 (formerly behind the glass in the little room) run in and everyone is starting at me waiting for my head to spin around.

"I'm ok" - I finally manage - droolling and shaking and embarrassed.

Radiology chic #1 tries to clean me up and then starts whispering to the other people in the room.

Radiology chic #1 - "Um - we didn't finish the scan - we have to put you back in for a little more - are you ok?"

me - "I'm ok" I just kept thinking - please god - no more iodine - no more needles.... Just don't throw up again.

They put me back in and did the scan.

It was finally over.

Radiology chic #1 comes back in and takes out my IV - (which driped blood all over me in the process - great!)

After getting bandaged up and offered water (and breath mints) - I am allowed to leave.

I sulk out to my car and then finally allow myself to cry. I was embarassed, bleeding and I had puke on my shirt. Lovely!

I just hope it's all over now and I can just go back to my normally scheduled programming.

For those of you who made it this far... Thanks for bearing with me!

Friday, August 11, 2006

Magic Loop Rocks!

I just taught myself how to do the Magic Loop sock! Well - I actually used this link... on Knitting Help

Can I just say - I Love it!! Why didn't someone tell me about this before! It's so much better than worrying about 4-5 separate sticks! It definitely is magic!

Check out this gorgesou yarn that I'm using - I got it from MindsEyeYarn.

I decided to do plain stockinette to show off it's gorgeous color. I am very happy with it! I am using my new Knit Picks Needles in size 3. I happy with them for the most part - the tips are nice and pointy - but the join where the needle and the loop meet could be a little smoother. My Magic loop keeps getting caught!

Oh and I also finished my mitred square purse! Yeah!

Here it is pre-felting.

I have to go a wedding tomorrow - do you think I can knit a lace wrap by then?


A girl can dream can't she?

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Vogue Knitting

Have you read the latest issue of Vogue Knitting? I'm not even half way done reading it yet - but I am totally loving it. The articles are great. I admit I haven't read all that many issues of Vogue Knitting - I was a little initimdated by the patterns at first.

I am especially happy to read about Tracey Ullman's new book on knitting that is coming out. Knit 2 Together. It is co-written by Mel Clark - a knitting designer and yarn shop owner. I have always loved Tracey Ullman - my love of her may have started when I found out we have the same birthday :)

There was also an amazing article on the history of sock knitting. How it started back in the 15th century and the royals had silk stockings and they outlawed the invention of a machine to knit socks - and all the different styles of heels, toes and knits.

I am totally loving it!

I am almost finished with my mitred square purse - I hope to finish it tonight and then I will post some pics.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

I dyed my own yarn

Yeah! My first hand dyed yarn! I was actually very happy with the results. This was a busy weekend - but I did manage to get two skeins of yarn dyed. I bought three skeins of undyed yarn from Knitpicks a few weeks ago.

I followed the directions here.

First - I soaked my yarn in warm water for 20 minutes.

While the yarn was soaking - I got my Cool Aid organized and lined up in rainbow order.

I added one part vinegar to three parts water - I think I ended up using 3 tbls vinegar and 9 tbls water in each cup. If I ever do this again - I think I will make more of each color - because it didn't go as far as I thought it would!

Anyway - After my yarn was soaked thouroughly and my colors were mixed - I layed out the yarn on top of saran wrap in a Pyrex cassarole container. I then used a turkey baster to apply the colors. (I learned that technique from my visit to Blue Heron!)

The yarn sucked up the color very quickly and I found myself using quite a bit of the liquid over a very small amount of space. But I didn't want to dilute the solution too much - because I wanted bright colors.

After I was done applying the dye - I smooshed the color around a little more to make sure everything was coated - then I covered the yarn with the saram wrap and made a little package so all the color stayed inside the wrap.

I microwaved it for 2 minutes and then let it sit for 2 minutes - then smooshed the color around a little more. The water in the package was still a bit colors and you were not supposed to stop until the liquid is clear - so I popped it back in the microwave for another 2 minutes. That did it for the red, orange and yellow one - but the blue, green and purple actually needed another two minutes of time.

I am very happy with the results! After baking - I squeezed out all the water and hung them up outside to dry. This picture - actually works for the Saturday sky image too :) Sorry I didn't actually post it until Wednesday - but hey - I'm a busy person!

After my yarn dying excitement - I headed out to the grand opening of the Celtic Knot! It has moved to a new location in Normandy Center off of rt 40 in Ellicott City.

There was a raffle with some great prizes

Incuding this book: - which I won!!

It was a fun time at the store - everyone had fun buying yarn (duh!)

and it was also a celebration! Carol (the owner) was having a birthday! So - we sang to her and gave her a cake. It was yummy...

Later a guy came into the shop and Carol taught him to knit! I have to give him credit - there were an awful lot of women standing around staring - but he just kept on knitting!

I swear knitters will take over the planet very very soon!

Sunday was also full of knitting happiness - I went back to Sunday in the Salon at Woolwinders for free class on a mitred square purse. I can't wait to finish and felt it. Shelby was there again and we had a grand time. Next week is a fair isle stranded silk bag!

On Monday - I visited a new Sit and Knit at Borders in Columbia. Thanks Lolly for inviting me! It was a good time - I met some fellow knit bloggers - including Mamma E, Soap Turle, Off to Oz and some others - I can't remember (sorry!).

I was nice to meet some other knitters in my area. It is always weird to see just how many of us there are!

Here's a random photo for you - This is 5'9'' me standing next to my canna flower - can you beleive how tall this thing is!!!!

Monday, August 07, 2006

It was like a hurricane...

First day back at work after my trip to New Orleans and my weekend of fun and I definitely don’t want to be here.

I didn’t know what I would think of my short business trip – but overall I think it was good that I went.

I got to see a new city and a new state and I also got to see how the higher ups do business. It was a good thing.

Flying into New Orleans – I was looking out the window and was very surprised to see just how many blue tarps are still on the rooftops there. It has been a year (almost) since Katrina and I guess I just expected it to be further along in its re-development. It still looks like the pictures I remember seeing from a few days/weeks after the hurricane. Driving along highway 10 – it was as if we were driving through a former war zone. Apartment complexes had missing walls and roofs and looked like they had been bombed. Most of the stores in the area were still boarded up, trees were uprooted, signs were bent over and everything looked deserted. It was very sad to see.

In downtown – things were better – Bourbon St

and the French Quarter seem to be intact (although I have nothing to compare it to – since this was my first trip to New Orleans).

I loved the houses that had balconys - they looked so romantic! Too bad they were next door to strip clubs and peep shows!

Bourbon street was lacking for tourists and the bars were practically begging people to come in. The main streets in town were mostly boarded up too. The hotels and fancy boutiques were not open and I’m not sure they were going to re-open. It was not a place I would want to walk around alone.

Other than that – I had fun. I stayed at the Marriot and had a nice room. Here's my view:

and at night...

We were on the 32 floor - which ordinarilly would have been cool - BUT they decided to implement a new elevator system while we were there and let me just say - it SUCKED! You're supposed to enter the floor you want to go to and then you will be assigned an elevator. There are no buttons inside the elevator - only on the outside. So - you can't just get on the first elevator that comes. It took FOREVER to get on an elevator. Then once you were on one - you ended up stopping on like every floor. Most of the time - no one was even got off. They had all boarded another elevator and were no where to be found. It was a nightmare. It took us over 20 minutes to get up and down each time. If I were on floor 20 or lower I think I would have walked up and down.

Anyway - enough of that...

We went to dinner at some lovely restaurants. The Red Fish Grill

the first night and GW Fins the second night. The Sea bass at GW Fins was amazing. The waiter told us that one lady had described it as “Dancing in her mouth” I would have to agree and add that it did the Tango to be exact!

After dinner the second night – my co-worker and I decided to make the most of our location and walk around for a bit.
We started walking toward Jackson Square - but were soon accosted by a guy with gold teeth - who serenaded us...badly - but it was still funny..

He even did a little whistleing for us - through his fingers:

We nearly died laughing.

We passed a great many more gorgeous balconys...

Before finally arriving at Jackson Square.

We walked around to the other side and saw the "famous levees" - not too impressive...

There was a beautiful sunset behind the church on Jackson Square...

After the required eating of the a “beignet” from Café Du Monde

– we headed back to Bourbon street – bought some cigars and checked out a few voodoo shops. (No – I didn’t buy any shrunken heads). We stopped at the Daiquiri stop and taste tested various flavors before deciding on the house special – man was it potent!

We sat in the Muscial Legends Park near Cafe Beignet and listened to a jazz band while we sipped at our drinks. These guys were awesome!

We were in good jazz company with Fats Domino, Al Hirt, Pete Fountain and Chris Owens looking on in statue form...

New orleans was one of the hottest places I’ve ever experienced. I’m not sure if it was the alcohol or the heat or what – but I was sweating a river! So – after a few daiquiris, a hurricane and a cigar (and losing about 5 pounds of water from sweating) – let’s just say I was bit hammered…

Hee hee!

In my already altered state - I got an even bigger kick out of some of the T-shirts I saw commenting on FEMA... Here's one of the tamer shirts I saw.

I also liked this sign - stating the obvious...

I managed to score some beads from the nice boys in one of the balconies :) And No!! I didn’t “pay” for them with anything other than a smile :p

So – this evening could have gone on until the wee hours – if it weren’t for a call we received from our project manager – around 11:30 pm.

Project manager - “Hi – just wanted to let you guys know – we’re meeting in the lobby at 3:20 AM tomorrow morning.”

Me – “Wha? AM? Our flight isn’t until 4 PM!”

PM – “Oh yeah – didn’t you get the voicemail? We’re going to try to get an earlier flight since we don’t have any meetings tomorrow.”

Me – "No - i didn't get that message - my phone didn't ring..." (or more likely I didn't hear it!) "what about the 10:55 flight?" (we had previously talked about taking this flight )

PM - "nope – it’s booked and the US air agent said we’d have a better chance of getting on standby with the 6:00am flight."

Me – "and we have to meet at 3:20?"

PM – "yeah – we want to get to the airport by 4."

Me – "Oye – OK – I’ll see you in a few hours."

Me – I proceed to have a fit and order another hurricane. If I’m going down – I’m going all the way. I got back to the room around 12:30

Me three hours later – I am in the lobby – looking all the worse for wear and wearing sunglasses.

Yeah – that was not a fun morning.

But – all is well – I made it back alive and slept it off on Friday.

More on my fun filled weekend later - this post is getting too long!!

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Greetings from the Big Easy!

I'm in New Orleans right now! It's hot. I left the heat in Maryland to come down here and enjoy a new kind of heat. I never quite understood humid before - but after spending a day here - I now understand the word to the fullest degree. You walk outside and are instantly sweaty. i'm not talking glistening sweaty - I'm talking big drops of sweat rolling off your forehead and clouding up your glasses sweaty.

We went out for dinner last night (after a long day at work) and I got Jambalaya - it was yummy. We are on Bourbon street at the Red Fish Grill. I was very surprised at how dead everything was on Bourbon street. Even though it really want't too effected by the hurricane directly - it is definitley feeling the effects - of no tourist!

Every other shop is a "Girls girls girls" kind of place and the other ones sell Hurricanes to go. Very interesting place.
I'll post pics and tell you more tomorrow - Im heading out again for my second evening in the Big Easy!!