Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Talking to myself

So there's a thread going around the blogger world concerning what you would say to your 16 year old self. Figuring I would rise to the occasion, I've decided to write a letter to the 16 year old me. If nothing else, it will be an exercise in LESSONS LEARNED. And if I drag a few skeletons out of the closet and expose them for the assholes that they are, then all the better.

Dear Teenage Me,

Yes, this is weird. You probably have never received a letter from yourself before, but try and pay attention. I know you may find it shocking that you even have any brain cells left at the ancient age of *cough* forty-six *cough* but there are at least a hundred or so still functioning to impart some wisdom on your skinny ass.

Listen up, kiddo. I've managed to keep your body alive for another 30 years and even managed to beat some sense into that hormone-addled brain of yours. It wasn't easy, but the main thing I need to tell you is that you will be ok. I promise.

Now that the big news is out of the way, here's a few pointers to make your life a little easier to navigate the next few years.

I know that high school sucks, but it pretty much sucks for everybody, so you're in good commpany. The only people that believe that high school doesn't suck are those three or four people that never grow beyond it. There will be good days and bad ones, but that's pretty much the rule of the rest of your life. It ain't all cruising in cars and hot dates. But again, you will be ok.

Embrace your inner dorkiness. I know it's hard to be different in high school, but one day soon, your originality will be something you are proud of. Plus you will never have to drive yourself bat-shit crazy again trying to find the exact same kind of tennis shoes that everybody else is wearing.

Keep your copy of the Thoureau book that your English teacher made you read. Otherwise you will have to spend some serious Ramen-noodle starving college student money for another one. (Which you will love and still have today, btw)

Stop perming your hair. Seriously. If Eddie Murphy can't pull off a Jeri-Curl look, neither can a white girl from the Bible belt of the Midwest. You will not achieve a tousled, carefree, "I just came from the beach" look for many years. Stop it.

Look down. See those legs? They are fabulous. See those abs? Get a good look now and ingrain it in your memory. Look behind you. That is an ass to die for. Trust me. Take care of those, instead of taking them for granted. Good genes will only carry you so far. The rest takes hard work.

Let's talk about your family. Ease up on your mom. She's in a bad position and you're not making it any easier. And about your dad? You need to learn when to keep your mouth shut. And when not to. Alcoholism affects more of your friends than you know and hiding behind lies and denying anything is wrong is denying you of support that you might have found. It will take years, but you can make peace with all of this.

Speak up more. You have things to say and haven't yet found the courage to say them. I promise that if you let your voice be heard, good thing will happen.

Stand by your friends. Hug 'em, love up on 'em, tell them that they are the greatest. Because thirty years later, they are still there and wonderful and irreplaceable.

Now, let's talk about college. You new-found freedom is not a license to lose your damned mind. Have fun, try new things, experience life, but for God's sake stop running around acting like you only have a week to live. Do not drink Cold Duck in the shower every morning before class. Do not blow a week's worth of grocery money on lingerie. Don't sign up for classes that begin at 8:00 in the morning. You are not a morning person, and never will be. And go ahead and have that fling with the guy named Jack. He will teach you how to truly enjoy sex. And when you see him? Tell him I said thank you.

P.S. Call your Grandma, she misses you.

Friday, October 29, 2010

I iz not dead.

Holy shitballs, I haven't typed anything in like forevah! My sincerest apologies to all my fans (both of them) and the unwashed masses that have been trying so hard to find me. You can take a bath now, I'm back.

Somehow all the planets got unaligned, and my chi got way messed up. I managed to make it through the days and the nights, but not without sacrificing time from some of the things I would rather be doing. Like writing here. Or tweezing my eyebrows. So now, other than looking like Brooke Shields circa 1985, I have straightened my ass up and gotten back to what I WANT to do, rather than what I HAVE to to do.

I have kept a handy lists of things that I plan on writing about while I was busy doing other things. It's a list compromised of things like "the house is trying to kill me" and "has my ass always been shaped like this?", along with such chilling commentary as "how hard would I punch each one of my employees on a scale of 1-10". I know, real cliff-hangers, eh?

Give me a day or so to catch me breath and I will be back to tell you all about how my cat is and asshole and why you should never give birth to babies with big heads.

**Side note: I have just mailed out some disposable cameras to friends with instructions to take one picture and mail it to another friend. Last frame sends it back to me. Stay tuned to see me get kicked out of WalMart for trying to develop pictures that are sure to be NOT PG-rated.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

As Promised, A Biker Rally

Feel free to smack me on the ass and tell me I've been bad. I've been away so long and I don't even really have a good excuse. Except that work is hard. And relationships are hard. Raising kids is hard. Life is hard. As a result, I am whiny.

But this is not the time for being a whiny-ass bitching. It's a time for storytelling. Time to get my hand-printed ass(you shouldn't smack so hard)busy and channel the funny. For realz.

Anyhooters, not long ago the Man and I spent a long weekend at a biker rally, in a tiny little place called Bean Blossom. We and the besties loaded up the camper for the four of us and dived head first into the melee. The rally is held in a campground that is famous for hosting the Bill Monroe Bluegrass festival every year.

The next three days and nights were spent watching revelry and bad decisions. It was glorious. If you ever need a place to feel better about yourself, it's here. check out these distinguished members of society:

Someone should really tell her that this does not flatter her body type.

And there's this: (Sidenote, a backpack, thigh high hose and combat boots. Seeexxxyyyy!

I did how ever meet a knight in shining armour. Or a fool in a tin-foil hat. Either way he was drinking out of a horn.

Now, lest you think it was all horror and scenes that make you want to bleach your eyeballs, here's some man candy, who incidentally had the voice of an angel. I tried to buy him, the ladies surrounding him weren't hearing of it.

One memory from the weekend that stand out in my mind (through the drunken haze) is the field games. Think of it as the Biker Olympics, only for "special" or "challenged" bikers. Events included are the Slow Ride (yes, it's a contgest to see who can go the slowest without putting their feet down) The Weenie Catch, The Keg Roll, and The Great Escape. Since pictures of the Slow Ride are boring (I mean, really?) here's a self-explanatory picture of the Weenie Catch. Boobies Optional.

That's a hot dog coated in mustard hanging from a frame. I'll let you figure out the rules from there.

But my favorite is The Great Escape. A whole stage is set. It's a production! There are props! And a story!

First a mattress is placed on the ground. Then the "entrant" lies down and is joined by two girls. The girls are there to "hold" the guy down and keep him from getting off the mattress. The premise to the story is this: when the time keeper says Go! the man is to jump off the matress, throwing the girls all wily-nily to the ground, as if he has just been busted by a jealous husband. Next to the mattress is a window (frame) for jumping through, then they must jump a hurdle (in this year's case, it was a keg) and mount their bike. They must then start their bike and ride through a series of cones to cross the finish line. Confusing? I have visuals. Of course I do.

Didja notice that one gentleman decided to complete the task sans clothing? I have photographic evidence that he completed the task at hand, but did not win the gold. That honor went to the man-candy shown above. The cutie-patootie. The one I tried to buy. But naked man did ask everyone not to put any pictures on the net showing his face. Because he is a high school girls volleyball coach. But at least one of the women sitting astride his naked body was his wife. The other was her best friend. And they sat on every man that entered the contest. THAT'S the kind of weekend it was.

I'm leaving out alot , but this nonsense has dragged on long enough. I'll tell you next time about the killer camper (and I mean in a stabby kind of way, not an awesome kind of way) and the bike show and leaving one evening to accept my Mother of the Year award. I'm tired and that's all I got tonight. But I'll take my Geritol and write more tomorrow. Pinky swear.

Monday, September 20, 2010

hello...remember me?

Yes, I know I been gone for like eleventy-billion years, but there has been so much life in my days lately. I'm still not sure who scheduled all this psychosis filled activity, but as soon as it slows down and my meds kick in, I'll be back to tell you all tales of wonder and merriment. Or naked bikers and camping failures. Your choice.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Seven things about me that you never wanted to know

I read alot of blogs. Big blogs, small blogs, humorous and informative. With all this reading, I've run into a fair amount of lists. And since it's been a very (*ahem) long time since I've written anything, I thought I would try one of these new-fangled listy things all the kids are raving about.

So here are seven (unless I run out of things that are interesting or someone flashes a shiny object in front of me)things about me that you probably didn't need to know. If you're not a fan of useless information, you should just go ahead and clickity-click on that little red "X" up there in the corner. Go ahead. I won't cry. Much.

1) I have cartoon feet. The patron saint of Hanna-Barbara bestowed upon me the feet of Fred Flinstone. The are wide, squarish appendages with round, stubby toes. (You totally want to make out with me right now, right?) Plus, I can stop a car. Probably.

2) I like to touch things. Now before you call the cops, it might not be what you think. I am a very tactile person and certain textures just make my brain happy. Let's just say that I'm far better being at the Children's Museum, instead of the Art Museum. Also? Certain fabrics can give me the hhhhuuuuzzzzzz. You know that spine-shaking, creep-fest that crawls up and down your skin? That's the hhhuuuuzzzzz. Trees, flowers, kitties, marble, linen, and the softest leather? Love. Them. Hard.

3) Food. I love it, but on the other hand I may be the most non-picky person about food EVER. Animal, vegetable, mineral, blue, green, chunky, pasty? Whatev. Gimme. Just throw some groceries down my throat and let's move on.

4) Due to the nature of my job, I have acccess to some of the most exotic and eclectic alcoholic beverages in the U.S. I have a full stocked bar at home that would make the local tavern jealous. Lagers, and porters, and bocks and beers. Imported, domestic, micro-brew and craft vineyard. But. But. I drink the same bourbon every single time. I don't know if this a habit or laziness or loyalty. I choose not to think about it too much.

5) If my bra doesn't match my panties, I'm uncomfortable all day. Also, I cannot bear cheap underthings. They make me squeamish.

6) If there is less than 3/4 of a bottle of laundry detergent on the house, my teeth hurt. From the clenching. With worry. I might run out. I feel much better knowing that if there is a zombie invasion or a plague of pestilence that would keep me from leaving my house, I will have aleast 1.75 bottles of detergent at my disposal.

7) I would rather have someone beat me with a large pissed off squirrel than do dishes. So it's a good thing that I have teenagers in the house to do my bidding. And load the dishwasher. When I was a kid, my parents had a dishwasher but we weren't allowed to use. My dad made is known to one and all that that "contraption" wasted water that he PAID FOR. So I did dishes every night. It was good training for me because I know have the stamina to tolerate the whining from the teenagers when they have to put dishes in and push the button. O, the agony.

So, there are seven things about me that you really didn't want to know. You may now consider yourself my very good friend. The kind that bakes me cakes and tells me I'm pretty as they brush my hair.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I'm a Supahstar!!!!!

Holy crapballs, Interwebbies! I'm famous. Or at least famouser than I was yesterday. Or possibly the day before that. Because I forgot to check the mail. Because the bourbon got in the way. Or something. I can't remember.

Anyhooters, see this?

That, my dear friendlies, is a postcard from someone I've never met. In person. So it's kinda like fan mail. But not really.

It's actually a postcard from the lovely Jam. She has started a postcard project and because I am magnificant the type to pester someone until they cave to my will, I received mine in the mail today. (Or yesterday. Please to see above foolish statement.)

Here's a pic of the postage to back up my next claim.

Yup, you guess it. I've reached international acclaim. Check the postage. It says CANADA! Suck on that! Her royal mapletasticness has sent me this personal message of joy and goodwill from across the lands.

Alas, I did not receive the Beaver postcard, but I'm guessing that she is at least 87% sure that I have a beaver of my own. And won't be needing hers. Not that her beaver isn't lovely. Probably.

So thank you, Your Royal Jamness for the beaverless card and the kind words written upon it. And as soon as I find a card fantastic enough to return to you, I shall do so, posthaste. If you send your addy to my email. I promise not to stalk you. Much.

And to all of you who are not Jam. Neener. And Neener.

Oops! I is a dipshit. Here's her link. Go read and experience the funny.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Part Nerd, Part Awesome

The last two weeks have been full of flash backs to my high school days. No, I haven't run upon a stash of mushrooms left from the eighties, it's just that my daughter has been knee-deep in band camp for the last fourteen days.

Ahhh, band camp. It's all sweaty teens full of hormones and angst. Now don't get me wrong. It's hard work. It's been ass-hot in Indiana this summer (and everywhere else, apparently) and stomping around on a school parking lot while carrying a heavy metal object is not for the faint of heart. In fact, most people would say it sucks. But sitting in the parking lot waiting for the kid...well can I just say that I was grinning like a fool just remembering what it was like for me.
But here's the thing. Now that the eldest is also in band camp, it STILL seems completely cool to me. Granted it's her third year for this, but I'm still not over the fact that just watching her play makes me giddy.

Yes, I was that girl. The band geek. And I have probably uttered the words " This one time... at band camp...". I played flute in the marching band and everything! I know! Total cliche' and I loved every minute of it. (I'm still a big noob, right?)

I spent a couple of years marching around playing whatever music the director was sure would win us some trophies (it's all about the bling) and trying to blend in with the others. Then suddenly, blending in wasn't enough. That's right. I tried out and became a majorette. MAJORETTE, folks. That's pretty heady stuff, right there. I'm talking pom-poms and batons and the whole nine yards. Not to mention the boots. Damn, I loved those boots. Still do.

Behold the awesome that is eighties hair and band uniforms.

That's me on the left. I'm probably sober.

But here's the thing...it hasn't changed. Looking at the pictures I've taken of the kid lately, I'm reminded of the pictures of myself as a marching kid. Mind is blown.



My band director:

Her band director:

And although as a MAJORETTE, I performed at basketball games during half-time in cute outfits such as this:

...the kiddo totes has me beat. She is the DRUM MAJOR. And way deserves capitol letters more than her momma ever did.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

For Her. And Him. And Her.

Three deaths. In two weeks. All under the age of fifty. All people I know.

I'm taking stock today of my life and the lives of those around me. Now I could make snarky comments about burning both ends of candles and lifestyles of bacon grease and Budweiser, but now is not the time. Now is the time to assess my own life and the mistakes I make. And to make decisions regarding how I wish to live and not live my life.

I am not going to get into final wishes and living wills on this blog. I won't discuss hows, wheres or what colors of funeral choices. I don't want to talk about my death. I want to talk about my life.

I believe that I have laughed more than I have cried and for that I am truly grateful. Tears have been shed, some joyous, some sorrowful. But each tear I have shed has come from a certain knowledge or memory that cannot be discounted.

I have held family and friends in my heart. They have brought me comfort and taught me gratitude that may not have come my way otherwise.

I have seen beauty and innocence and amazing sights with my eyes and felt these things go straight to my heart.

I have touched the softest baby's cheek and the weathered bark of trees from another century. I've been burned by fire and frozen by snow and reveled in the changes around me.

I've heard whispered words of love and angry words meant to hurt. I've learned to look beyond the words to find the meaning and the intent, and to deflect that which is not useful.

What does this all mean? It means that my life is good. Better than I realized. Too good to be taken for granted. It's time for this chickie to straighten up and fly right. Because there's still meaning and purpose that I haven't yet discovered. There's still more of me to find. And I need to be here for that to happen.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Phoning It In

In the midst of the chaos and general nuttiness that has been the last week or so, I finally realized that I did not finish writing about my last day or so of vacation. So in the interest of finishing ONE DAMNED THING in my life, here it is.

We drove through Kentucky.
Dave had the oil changed at the Harley shop.
We went home.

Suck. AmIright? Yeah.

It appears that once you get to a state that actually touches the state you live in, things go downhill.

I have several things to blame. Laundry is at the top of the list. I was getting dangerously close to needing to do laundry while on vacation. This, my dear friends, is a cardinal sin (I'm pretty sure). Next, would be the calendar which taunted me it's "You have to go back to the real world soon. And no one will make your bed or bring you food." And finally there was the odometer, which politely told me that my ass had been sitting on this seat for almost two thousand miles.

See? It was like I had been on a week-long one night stand and it was now almost time for the walk of shame. Vacation had totally sexed me up and now was kicking me out of bed without giving me it's phone number. So really, vacation is a bastard.

I don't have any really good pictures of the last days of vacation, so instead I'll just show you what The Man refused to buy me at the Harley Shop (I don't care if we are almost home, Mr. Man!)because he obviously doesn't love me care about the condition of my ass.

So, I'm back at work now. With Monkey Butt.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Almost heaven, but weirder

Ok, West Virginia. You made that John Denver song burn into my brain FOREVER.

This has to be the weirdest state we passed through on our journey. The disparity between the beautiful mountains and the harsh, belching industrial areas gave my eyeballs whiplash. And then there was the giggling. Over and over West Virginia provided a dose of crazy for my delight. But we'll get to that in a minute. First the obligatory scenic shots.

Yes, I know it looks like Virginia. You're just gonna have to believe me.

Then there was the crazy. Oh dear Lawdy, the crazy runs rampant in these parts. Here's my favorite shots of "What the Hell? Did I really just see that?".

Isn't this the best house you've ever seen? The subtle use of color. The comfort of the repeating pattern. The coordinating shed. It's a masterpiece. Better Homes and Gardens needs to hustle their asses out here and talk to these people before this trend catches on. For the record, that is not paint. It's every color of siding ever made and a few that should have never been made. It's like a giant box of crayolas that you live in. Fabulous!

Now this is fine art, folks. Giant spotted dinosaur being ridden by a cave woman mannequin carrying a compound bow. But really, it's the ivy around the dinosaur's neck that really ties the whole thing together.

Now, we need to talk about this next shot. This is quite possibly the best picture I have ever taken. And if this was the only thing I had witnessed all week, the trip would have totally been worth it. This image now lives in the happy place in my brain, so that I can go there when I need some giggle time.

DeHart's Bible and Tire. Oh, where do I begin? The Man, who was busy driving and not killing us, even did a double take and turned his head to say, "Didja get that? Please tell me you got that!".

Mr.(or Ms.) DeHart, I commend you for your resourcefulness. Now you can save our souls and our cars at the same time.

West Virgina, I love you, like that weird guy in high school that always made you laugh, but still smelled kinda funny. Yeah, like that.

Total Mileage: 1,592 miles
Times I almost peed my pants because The Man wouldn't stop: 3
Rainstorms waited out under an awning at a gas station: 1
Days left until I am home doing laundry and weeping: 1

Friday, July 9, 2010

The one where that damned John Denver song keeps going through my head

Day Five and Six ('cause we ain't that interesting, or because I'm lazy. Hard to say.)
Total mileage: 1,189
Number of times I whined about putting on suncreen: 14
Number of times I griped about my sunburn because I wouldn't put on sunscreen: 15

After spending the last few days with a relative body temperature reminiscent of a three day hot flash, I was forced to yell "Get me to the mountains, man" and we turned southeast and headed to the bottom of Virginia.

Our route took us through prime Civil War battlefields and monuments to the conflict betweeen the North and South.

But first...

We stood in the blazing sun for over an hour waiting on a funeral procession to pass through. We weaved our way through traffic to get off the main highway and spent the next hour or so waiting on traffic to clear. As it started to clear (or so I thought) I announced to the man that we could leave now and still make it to our night's destination before dark.

Yeah, I may have jumped the gun on that one. We managed to catch up to the procession within a matter of minutes and were forced to sit in the full sun on the highway, sweating like a beer on a tailgate at a tractor pull in August. I spied a road ahead with a sign for a battlefield exihibit and pleaded with The Man to turnoff the highway and drive down the shaded road. I figured if nothing else we could kill some time and give the GPS a chance to re-route us away from the traffic. We made our way down the road, enjoying the slightly cooler air and the fact that we were actually moving. Moving! With air and everything! Divine! We rode probably four or five miles, then NOOOOOOOO!!!! we were right back where we had started. The road had simply looped around and took us right back where we started. Except that we were now five miles farther BACK and had to sit through the same traffic we had just left. This may have been when I started crying. Hard to say, I've blocked it all out. Eventually we passed the cemetary and slowly began to speed our way south as traffic began to thin out.

At the bottom of Virginia, we turned into the entrance of Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park. There is a ranger station at the entrance of Skyline drive, where a (Ranger) (lady in a Smokey the Bear hat) (State Park Employee) nice lady gave us maps, took our ten bucks and issued us a warning. Apparently the previous day, a motorcyclist was hit by a bear. WTF? No, he did not hit a bear in the roadway. THE BEAR RAN OUT OF THE WOODS AND HIT HIM. I can not even imagine the conversation with his insurance company. Does one need special Giant Attacking Bear coverage? Luckily, at the next gift shop I found a T-shirt answering all my questions.

No, it does not come in adult sizes. Yes, I asked. And of course, I will be searching online for one that fits me, because this is possibly the best T-shirt ever!

The next day and a half were spent riding through vista views and views of vistas and scenic wonderlands of mountains. What can I say? It was cool and refreshing and clean and peaceful and beautiful. There were wonderful granola-cruncy hikers, complete with eco-friendly shoes and tattered backpacks. The ride was a calming balm to the hustle and stress and smog of the recent cities. It was cool streams and woodland charm.

We traveled through curves and tunnels and the best parts of Virginia. I recommend that everyone take a drive on Blue Ridge Parkway at some point in their lives. It will renew your spirit.

Tomorrow's agenda: West Virgina. It's all that you have heard, but weirder.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Hot for Teacher

Day 4: Washington, DC
Temperature: 102
Likelihood of heat-induced brain trauma: 75%
Likelihood of me fanning my T-shirt so vigorously that I inadvertantly flash a senator's aide during his lunch: 90%

I'm feeling not funny today, so this post is likely to be full of suckage. But whatev. I'm committed to finishing this thing. I jotted down a few notes yesterday, so the chances of this being mildly coherent are up slightly. So at least there's that.

So, where was I? Oh yeah, Capitol Building. We parked there and died. Not really, but now that we were no longer moving, the air seemed stifling. (Gah, I need spellcheck. Is that right? Stifling? Doesn't seem right.) Looking around the Mall, we personafied typical tourists, all gape-mouthed and whatnot. As we stumbled towards the big fancy buildings, this approached us.

This is Dave. Everybody say hi, Dave! Dave is a high school science teacher and may have saved our lives. He kindly offered to pedal our sweaty asses around the Mall for an undetermined amount of money. Dave drives a Pedi-cab when he's not teaching science to adolescents and works for tips. Since we have cash and looming heat-strokes, we take him up on his offer.

I'm quite sure that Dave is the hot teacher at his high school and all the girls giggle whenever he talks about positive ion attraction and big bang theories. He is a fountain of information and told us more about the area and buildings than we could have gotten from any tourist-y booklets. Since he knew we were in town for only a few hours, he filled us in on which places were best and which would not be worth our time.

I have lots of pictures like this. I didn't want to lean too far out of my seat and take a chance on swaying the Pedi-cab rickshaw thingy, thus causing Dave to get irritated and throw me out, leaving me to die along the street.

After pedaling 2/3's of the way around, we disembarked, paid the cute teacher and started to head into the first of many Smithsonian biuldings. This is when we overheard Dave the Cute Teacher negotiating with his next client. He offered to take the couple HALF the distance we had just ridden, for well OVER the price we had just paid. Clearly, we are cheap and he is re-thinking the whole "working for tips" thing. But in our defense, he told us to just pay whatever we thought was fair. Meh. I hate being cheap. I also hate being guilted into paying more. FAK!

We loaded up our guilt and plowed into the first building, surrounded by middle schoolers on field trips and Griswold family vacationers. First up, the Air and Space Building.

Then the Museum of Natural History


I think this one looks sneaky. I suspect that dinosaurs were assholes like that.

And that's when it happened. You know how you can go somewhere, somewhere far away, somewhere no one ever goes and then you see someone you know? Well there he was. My Ex. The Milkdud himself.

Hi, Asshat.

After that, it was time to change buildings and hope The Milkdud wouldn't find us. The Museum of American History. (My apologies for the poor quality of pics, it's really dark in there and my camera is ashamed of the fact that it is smarter than me.)

You can almost smell the napalm and weed.

I have oodles more pictures, but I'm afraid this is turning into a slideshow at Aunt Liz's house of their trip to Bumfuckville while eating crappy appetizers and inhaling Uncle Raymond's second-hand cigar smoke and beer farts.

A few more buildings later, as our blood reached the temperature of lava, we headed back to Chesapeake Bay and comfy beds and air conditioning.

Stop back by tomorrow, there will be bears, hikers and funeral processions. Not neccesarily in that order.

Bye Dave! You'll always be my Capitol Crush!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Mr. Man Goes to Washington...But First, The Beach!

Chesapeake Bay...Day three. After spending the night in a wonderful room with working locks on the doors (Thank you Baby Jeebus), we woke with visions of Beach! Sun! Sand! Charming Seaside Village! Scenic Lighthouses! We donned our fashionable beachwear and skipped merrily outside. (Note: The Man will be be all up in my business about that one. He. Does. Not. Skip. Fine, whatever. Duly noted, Sir.)

After a cup of coffee and some continental breakfast in the lobby, we then WALKED (geesh) outside and were hit with an ass-hot wave of air that threatened to melt my non-functioning ovaries and sear our flesh from our bodies. But we were determined. We had traveled far. We would see the beach or else.

Scattered up and down the bay side of Chesapeake Bay are lovely little towns, all with beach access. We traveled up the coast stopping at three different places to enjoy what they had to offer.

The breeze was deceiving and the air was clean, and once again all was right with the world. The horrors of the MOTEL WHICH SHALL NOT BE MENTIONED AGAIN was temporarily erased from my skeeved out brain and I was again in a vacation-y type of mind. We walked down the pier and talked about the local architecture and watched kids playing on the beach. We sat on benches looking at local maps and stood staring out at the bay. It was nice to stop for awhile and just not move.

But, there's only so much of this stillness that can be tolerated. It IS vacation after all. There are things to be seen.

One hour later found us at the edge of Washington, DC and also the edge of a heat stroke. Buzzing along at 55 mph, the heat isn't usually an issue. No, the issue came later. In DC proper, so to speak. First there was this.

The entire length and breadth of Pennsylvania Avenue is under construction. And yes, this is the route that we took into the city. Sign-holding, neon vest-wearing men were everywhere. Plus each and everyone of them were looking at us like we had lost our mother-trucking minds to be in this traffic and in this heat and in this city. (Grammer is my forte, obviously.)

Push onward, Mr. Man...we're almost there. We are almost to the center of the politcal world, where movers and shakers think deep thoughts and are charged with the care and mantainenance of this great country. The Great and Powerful Oz will see you....wait, that's not quite right.

Back to the story. With the assistance of one very nice traffic cop, we found a place to park next to the Capitol Building.

I just realized that if I post pictures and write about the entire day, that this would be a long-ass post that would have you wanting to cancel your internet subscrpition after you scoop your eyeballs out with a melon baller. So I'm gonna stop here. But come back tomorrow. Because I need to tell you about running into someone that I know. Plus there will be more pictures. So come back. Pretty please?