All the Things (as usual)

It’s been too long. Things shuddered to an oozing slow and then rubberbanded back into warp before I even thought about it. I have officially finished my first season at the Stage. My contract will renew in a couple months, but life did not proceed as I thought it would. I was supposed to have May to myself to travel and then I would toddle off to my summer job content with my adventures. Well, I am looking at some very different adventures.
First, my initial trip to see some fair faces in Maryland was kyboshed by incredible car trouble. Thankfully, the trouble happened before I started my journey, but by the time the issue was fixed, by time to go to MD was nixed. Needless to say I was pretty bummed. However, that time was not idly spent. A fine friend of mine turned me on to a climbing gym in the area. I used to climb all the time in my senior year of college and I have sorely missed the exercise. I nudged Handsome to go and (as I suspected he would) he fell in love with the activity. So, since I had some extra days on my hands we went climbing together. If you would allow some gushing then I simply I must do so about rock climbing. It is an activity that challenges every physical and mental capacity one can think to challenge. Tis a playful puzzle that demands you grit your teeth and fight for its solution. The fact that Handsome enjoys it as much as I do makes the climbing all the sweeter.
After the car got fixed, I was planning on continuing my travel plans and in a sense I have. I am writing from the fair Cape May, where my father and I have opened up the mobile home for the season. Even though I am going to be in Jersey for a few days, I am not heading onward but rather back to Syracuse. I managed to get some overhire work that I am genuinely excited to start. The gig is only for a couple of weeks, but I get to help paint big pretty backdrops! Drop painting is a skill that I have wanted to build up and this theatre has a reputation for quality work. I get to help them meet their deadline and I get an excellent work experience from them. Plus, can’t hurt to make some income in the only month where I didn’t have a job lined up. Although I am giving up a portion of my travel, I can still go see the Raven and hopefully the Sexy Librarian before I toddle off to West VA for my original summer job. Here”s to the usual (and mostly futile) hope that I can post soon…before I have another forever post like this one at least 😉

Ten Things I Discovered/Learned Since I Last Wrote

It has truly been a ridiculously long time since I last wrote here, but life spiraled in a dizzying display of color and sudden collision of activity that did not inspire the proper energy for writing. I will eventually relate the adventures, but for now I feel inclined to give a taste of those adventures through newly acquired knowledge (be it of myself, or just knowledge of a general topic).

1. I really like wine. I used to consider myself strongly a beer person, but now I understand that I was just approaching the grape-based distant cousin all wrong. Turns out I am in some fabulous wine country and I am surrounded by local vineyards with a plethora of wineries attached. I have only sampled a few, but suffice it to say I am extremely impressed with my sampling. I still dearly enjoy beer, but wine has now subtly shifted into a similar placement on my enjoyment scale.

2. You can tint gloss sealer to be fun colors while still maintaining its transparency. I know, I know, try to contain your excitement. The reason this is fun will become apparent once I can post pictures of the show I am currently working on (and almost have completed hallelujah!!)

3. I learned to set in sleeves on a knitted sweater. May not sound like much, but it is a new technique that I was avoiding because I was afraid that I would:

a.) Make a terrible mess of the thing.

b.) Find it really boring and tedious, thus shoving the gorgeous garment even further into my bag in the hopes that the dark recesses would convince the garment to mutate to include the offending sleeve caps

Thankfully, neither scenario occurred thanks to this video. Knitpicks is a godsend I swear it’s true. I actually really enjoyed the process and I am now galloping off towards a complete cardigan that is so pretty I can barely wait to traipse about in all its turquoise glory.

4. If you are in a shop that sells various jams and jellies, be very careful grabbing what looks like a stuffed animal bear. It may actually be a covert jar cozy housing a 12 ounce jar of jam that may then, jostled by your careless bear -grabbing, go tumbling off the counter and shatter into a bajillion pieces.

5. When drinking tea, one should actually slurp it loudly and with abandon so that the drink hits every single portion of the tongue, thus releasing all the flavor that was intended to be experienced in the blend.

6. Night air shows are really freakin spectacular. Seriously.

7. The reason the water in Lake Michigan is so clear is because of an invasive species called the zebra mussel . Even though the clear water is super beautiful, apparently these boogers cause a great deal of grief.

8. I am still a capable swimmer even when slightly intoxicated. (Don’t worry, I did not learn this while swimming alone.)

9. The Seal of the President of the United States is a giraffe and a half of ridiculous to recreate from scratch.

10. Michigan wins the award for best summer weather ever. The hottest it ever gets is 90 and I can only count on one hand the number of times it has gotten that hot since I arrived in June. Last year this time I was a puddle of Florida goo. Now I still need a sweatshirt on some July mornings 🙂

Stick with me guys, I swear fun pictures and stories are on the horizon.

Wild Journeys to Good Places

I am now in Michigan, and what a wild ride to get here. I mean, I guess it wasn’t completely wild in the sense that I didn’t suffer any trouble with dragons or wild boars, but by the standards of my own normality I would say there was a slight funk of wildness about the trip. Handsome and I left on Saturday, driving 8 hours to Ohio to stay with my friend The Raven. The Raven is a friend of mine whom I met at WordBridge last year, and he is by far one of the most talented and intricately woven people that I know. His abode happened to be at a halfway point between my parents’ place and the Camp, so he was kind enough to offer us lodging for the night. I could not have imagined a more pleasant evening. The house that he and his wife share is a most beautiful structure that clearly has been loved and rendered to fit the energy of its inhabitants. They had a huge backyard that felt like a tiny woodland and an incredible dog named Scout who suffered my terrible throwing for the sake of chasing various objects into the greenery surrounding. The Raven regaled us with tales of folly, anxiety, beauty, and general wonder as well as taking us to a most excellent restaurant where we ate entirely too much food. The evening was spent in the company of him and his wife on the back porch as we discussed the state of modern theatre as we watched Scout stare down a pair of raccoons (safely up in a tree…the raccoons not the dog) and later a storm that was so heavy a downpour to look almost unreal. The next morning, we were sent off with a most delicious breakfast (a quiche consisting of egg, cheese, spinach, bacon, and mushrooms) and a warm farewell.

I left Handsome at an airport three hours shy of my destination. The goodbye was a little harder than usual for me because I have gotten a little spoiled seeing him so often of late. I know I should not be so wistful considering he and I will soon be living together, but welcome to the immediate desires of the human heart. Driving to the Camp was like nothing I have ever experienced. I have driven through wooded areas, but nothing like this forever place where trees actually have enough presence to remind you how insignificant you are in the midst of this landscape. I drove and drove, deeper into a world where I could feel my shoulders lose their tension while my heart beat itself into my throat. I finally arrived at the Camp, which is something of a cross between a miniature college campus and the old-fashioned-log-cabin camp. I thankfully managed to get my keys and into my room, but I was not long there. The gentleman who hired me, R-Dog, kindly drove me to meet with the rest of my co-workers for dinner. I am not going to list all of them right now, but I am sure they will all crop up sooner or later. Dinner was a raucous and relaxed affair that allowed me to only munch on my foot a few times, while also giving me the opportunity to say intelligent and witty things that made up for afore mentioned foot munching. After dinner, I lent a hand to a couple coworkers for move-in and was returned the help for my own belongings. We then sat up talking into the wee hours…which was not the wisest decision considering the early wake up. Still, I could not have begged for a better welcome and though there is more to tell, I think I will hold off until some of the more interesting paintwork begins. Suffice it to say, I think I made an excellent choice coming here.

From MA to NY, an Adventure: Day 1

Last week into early this week was a furious spin of beautiful and productive travel that has left me reeling. I chose to visit two of my very dear friends, Persephone and SexyHistorian (was formerly SexyLibrarian, but I just decided that the second portion of that pseudonym was slightly limited) , in Amherst Massachusetts. They currently are roommates, and both are pursuing their Masters degree at the same school within the consortium that exists in that area. I arrived later evening on Wednesday evening, and I enjoyed a rousing trivia night with SexyHistorian at one of her favorite haunts in East Hampton (I went to this place again during my stay, so I will describe the venue more fully in a later post). Thursday is where I shall begin…

Thursday found me driving SexyHistorian into work, which is located in the town center of Amherst. Persephone was off teaching for the day, and SexyHistorian be at work for a large chunk of the day as well. Originally, I planned on bumming around their apartment. However, once outside and in the town center, I could no more think of staying inside than I would consider kicking a kitten. The day was absolutely stunning, all molten-blue sky, sunshine, and a fine breeze blowing through the midst. SexyHistorian was kind enough to point me in the direction of an inexpensive cafe with outdoor seating, and then she whisked herself to work. I spent a couple hours consuming large amounts of tea, reading a very hefty historical romance, and knitting. Once bored with that, I began to traipse about the town center. For those who have never been to this area, tis a place one could fall in love with as quickly as it takes to blink. My love only grew the rest of my stay, but the first deep seed began to sprout on this day. The town is a glorious collection of historical and bohemian charm that left my face aching with smiles. I would walk about viewing a plethora of pleasing architecture and shop fronts, and then I would happen upon a green area where I could plant myself to read and otherwise enjoy being still. I was so enamored of my surroundings, I texted Persephone begging her to join me once she was out of school. She agreed, and my day was further enhance by her generous company as we walked about together. That evening, when we all were back in the apartment, it was decided that the next evening (Friday) we would all get prettied up and head out to bar for cocktails and general mayhem. Thus ended my first day.

Kentucky Journey Part 1: General Outline

Ever driven from New Jersey to Kentucky? Kind of a long stretch through a couple big, cow/farm infested, states and then (Insert magical sparkly noise) you’re there. The plan was that Handsome would come in late Tuesday night, we’d leave stupidly early Wednesday morning to arrive in Kentucky (11 hr. and 12 min) by the evening, and then come all the way back on Saturday. Do I even need to tell you that the plan did not go according to itself? Probably not, my readers tend to be smarter than the average bear. Instead, they may wonder what on earth I would be doing in Kentucky for only a three day stint. Well puddleduck, I was at a gynormous theatre conference (the largest one in the country supposedly), interviewing for jobs like it was a profession itself. See, the conference offers a rather excellent job fair where a goodly number of theatres come to interview for their upcoming seasons. For a small fee (and by small, I mean not really), you can get a shiny badge and a booklet with all the theatres, the positions they are looking to fill, and specifics about those positions (pay, duration, etc.). Tis, and excellent opportunity to meet people rather than just a cover letter, and while I don’t know if anything will result from the conference, I really would prefer to speak of the highlights of the trip itself.

Supposedly, the route we intended to drive was supposed to get slammed with snow on the day we hoped to leave. Handsome and I agreed to put the leave-time off until Thursday and I would just accept the cut in time. Well, come Wednesday morning, Handsome was awakened by an adventurous rolly-polly (in case you don’t know what they look like, ta-da!). Although harmless, awakening to a bug crawling on you is quite unpleasant, and therefore he found himself checking the weather conditions rather than falling back asleep. Upon investigation, he came to wake me up, suggesting that we should leave as soon as possible because the weather looked a lot less nasty than supposed. Choosing not to argue (for once), I hurried to get ready, and we soon flew away. The drive was uneventful and we made it safely to Louisville Kentucky.

I will not bore you with the details of the conference. Suffice it to say I interviewed a bunch and Handsome did fun things in my absence. We both really enjoyed Louisville, dubbing it a chill city that we would definitely consider returning to in the future. Rather than drive all the way back Saturday, we split the drive, taking a rest at a simple hotel for the night. We came safely home with nary a scratch, and another state to check off the list of places we have visited. For the more endearing, food/people-related adventures (not to be confused with anything remotely cannibalistic), you should check out the post above 😉

Strange Creatures

"He's Mr. Green Christmas, he's Mr. Sun..."

“He’s Mr. Green Christmas, he’s Mr. Sun…”

For those who are unfamiliar with the character above, he is Heat Miser from the fantastic claymation movie The Year Without a Santa Claus. If you want to hear a fantastic song, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy did a cover of the song that is originally sung in the movie by this character and his more wintry brother. In case you’re of my generation and have a certain expectation of linkage, here you are.

Why is this fiery personage making an appearance? He is merely an exaggerated illustration of the friend I met with in Philadelphia last week. He will henceforth be known as Heat Miser, but that is not nickname that is new to him. Considering he is an outstandingly large (as in tall and broad, I am not calling him fat…the boy is 6′-5″ for heavens sake), burly, irishman with a size 17 shoe and carrot red hair, you can see the comparison. The only differences being that he is a little less grumpy (mostly) and tends not to be caught in sparkly things (unless attached to a utilikilt). I met him in high school, and he is basically the closest thing to an annoying older brother that I have.

It had been a long time since we had seen each other, let alone talked. Then, one evening, it just occurred to me to call. Heat Miser is currently touring as a master electrician for one of the larger shows, so I figured he probably wouldn’t have time to chat. Well, fun fact, he did have time to text. Turned out he was in Philly, which just so happens to be extra close to me right now. I had never driven into the city, but I found myself doing so with less than a day’s notice. Philadelphia is a really close city. No, I mean close, as in the streets are so tight I felt a new kinship with bottled ships. I managed to make it without incident, and Heat Miser and I had an excellent time drinking excellent beer and racing to know the last year of the other’s life. Friends are strange creatures. Some can basically be absent from your existence, and then enter back in and barely ruffle the drapes on the windows. Heat Miser is just such a person, and I am the same for him I should think. We are both restless, and therefore keeping constant track of one another is less of an issue because we know the truth. We will find our way back to a good talk, good beer, and…..

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…a damn delicious oreo cheesecake 😉

Travels and Fickle Blogging

I started this blog to keep people apprised of my adventures, and here I have been going like a whirlwind with so little writing. It’s difficult to transfer events when so many of them have been out of necessity and therefore lose some of the adventurousness. However, when I actually look at the time since I left Florida, my head spins a little bit. To summarize:

 

– I moved from Florida to New Jersey (1,112 mi.)

– I was in Baltimore for Super Bowl weekend

– I experienced tunneling out after a major snowstorm in CT

– I went to the Smokies for a week with Handsome and had a most glorious time.

– I met with a very dear and long time friend in Philadelphia.

– I got to meet some beautiful horses, and enjoy the duties accompanying their care.

-I went to a huge theatre conference in Kentucky where I interviewed out my ears, and I enjoyed delicious food in excellent company.

All these places I drove to, (with Handsome often traveling along, sharing the driving time thank goodness) which is a lot of time spent in a car within the last month or so. All this travel in such a short span of time has left me breathless, not to say a little disoriented.  Many people get restless in the car, but I find it to be soothing for the most part (we discovered that 15 hours in one day seems to be the absolute limit). The car is a private universe, where no one can tell you to change the music, or insist that you pay attention to anything save the subtle orchestra of the road outside your windows. Sure, the complete inadequacy of every other driver’s capabilities can be quite vexing, but ultimately, you rarely have to fear as long as your attention is consistent.

Digression about vehicle travel aside, I have decided to try being less of a fickle blogger. I have much to share, and thus I will do so. The posts will start backwards, from the promised pictures of the beautiful cabin Handsome and I stayed within that week in the Smokies, followed by a brief recap of my meeting with Mr. Heat Miser in Phili, and then details of the conference in Kentucky. I fear I cannot ever promise consistency dear reader, seeing as my nature is fickle at best. But, I will promise to continue as long as the writing persists.