Jan 30

We are FINALLY back from Rome and we miss it. But Italia Airlines? YOU SUCK!

And I hate to admit it? But the first thing we ate when we were back in the US at the JFK airport? BURGER KING! Christ, it was good.

I can’t go in to details right now because geez, I’m on vacation, get off the computer already, but our trip back was a major cluster fuck. Think, missing a flight, getting stuck in the middle of nowhere, albeit beautiful roman countryside, getting totally screwed out of 100 Euro and 23 hours of no sleep. Yeah. That was us on Saturday and Sunday. However, we made some amazing friends. yes, FRIENDS. We bonded through the chaos and will probably be going to Australia next year.

But we’re back in NC, I’ve gained five pounds eating too much pasta, too much cheese and Prischutto, and of course drinking too much wine, and the vacation is winding down.

But I’m much less stressed out and oddly enough so is my family. I did, however, wake up with a migraine this morning but between memaw and Howard, I was petted and coddled within an inch of my life. There is nothing like hugs from memaw. She and I had a nice long conversation over breakfast this morning and I realize that it gets harder and harder to leave her every year, but she assured me that if pawpaw were alive, he’d be so proud of me. “You are seeing the world, living in an amazing place, doing a lot of things that other people just don’t have the nerve to do…don’t you ever feel bad about it.”

Then she wonders why it gets harder to leave her. With a memaw like that, wouldn’t anyone feel the same way?

Anywho, GOD the lack of sleep really gets me on a corny tangient, does it not? Well, I figure the last year has seen me bitching and moaning a lot here, so I owe everyone a good, disgustingly whimsical post.

Also? Anyone who can guestpost during a stomach virus? Deserves another week off! Thank you Amy! Feel better!

Jan 28

Amy of BadGroove here (yes again!) Since I have posting rights on three blogs right now…I thought I would do a Groovin’ Lyrics Weekend. I picked three songs I am listening to today…got the lyrics…and am posting one set of lyrics per blog! Feel free to play along if you want to join the groove…and leave a comment so we can see what you are grooving to.

The lyrics I picked for Insane Ramblings are:

Mas Tequila by Sammy Hagar

All right now, here we go …
Now we’re gonna tell you a little story
About the way we like to party - take ya on a trip!
HIT IT!
That’s right
I’m goin’ way down south where the big blue agave grow,
Takin’ a weekend trip down to Baja, Mexico!
Where you can drink the water, but don’t ya eat the ice,
Take your vitamin “T” with salt ‘n lemon slice …
I say,
One shot…Hey! Mas Tequila-
Two shots…Hey! que veneno-
Three shots…Arriba! Mas Tequila!
Hey! Hey!
She did a mean macarena to the funky cold medina
Behind a body shot and three margaritas.
She’ll drink it straight from the bottle, terra cotta jug,
From a boda bag coppin’ a major buzz.
I say,
One shot…Hey! Mas Tequila-
Two shots…Hey! que veneno-
Three shots…Arriba! Mas Tequila!
Hey! Hey!
Uno mas, bartender…one more…mas tequila!
Hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, hey!
Yo can drink the water, but don’t ya eat the ice;
Take your vitamin “T” with salt ‘n lemon slice!
I say,
One shot…Hey! Mas Tequila-
Two shots…Hey! que veneno-
Three shots…Arriba! Mas Tequila!
Hey! Hey!
One shot…Hey! more tequila!
Two shots…Hey! que veneno!
Three shots…Ay yi yi yi yi …
Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey! Hey!
Mas Tequila!
No mas, no mas ….

For more GROOVIN’ Lyrics weekend see:

BAD GROOVE: Groovin’ Lyrics Weekend: OUTTA MY HEAD

and

ECHOESOFADREAM: Groovin’ Lyrics Weekend: RIGHT NOW

Jan 27

Amy of Badgroove here again…keeping Insane Ramblings warm whilst your usual hostess is roaming around Europe in a dress singing “the hills are alive with the sound of music” or maybe just exploring Italy…you can never be too sure.

Anyway…I returned to work this week after having a week off with a nasty stomach virus. I returned to work with one major difference. I am now wearing my spectacles (glasses). I don’t usually wear them- I am a contact lense wearer usually…but having spent too much time over the previous week praying to the porcelin god…I broke a vessel or two in my eye..and was told to go sans contacts until it is cleared up. All fine and dandy except because I never wear my glasses to work- it draws attention to me. So that now my boss dubbed it the EVIL EYE and drags anyone within proximity to my desk commanding me to GIVE THE EVIL EYE.

So…Rambling Readers…I give thee the Evil Eye…

Jan 26

This is AMY from BADGROOVE here …throwing upposting a guestpost…while your usual INSANE RAMBLINGS host is frolicking around on a lovely and much needed vacation.

Basically reading her update on the fun and hijinks she is having has me wanting to go on a vacay…but I dream of going in style!!! I want to go to Disneyland (yes I am 30something and still LOVE disneyland). Only I want to go to DL in style. The last time I went I splurged and went in style staying at one of the park hotels and living large on what is called “concierge level”…the VIP Level. It is much more expensive…and basically they can make dinner resos for you and they can give you special seating for aladdin and your room gets done twice a day and you get turn down service and they leave little chocolates on your pillow….you have access to a special lounge where free food and drinks are available. Basically they spoil you rotten and treat you like a star….my friend and I splurged for it last year…in honor of the 50th anniversary and all…and…I WANT THAT…again. But it is terribly expensive and extravagant. But I long for it. I can’t imagine every going to DL again without staying at the park and being fawned over by the concierge. Damn it.

Jan 26

Yesterday morning we awoke early, ate breakfast and made haste to the Vatican City. We were supposed to get tickets for the Pope and his weekly service but there was a lot of traffic and our cab driver could not get us there in time to meet our group. So we had to wait until 11 30 to do the rest of the tour. We were so disappointed but once our tour got underway we forgot all about it.

We had a wonderful tour guide who gave us all kinds of insight in to the construction of the city (actually the smallest country in the world, as we all know) and the artwork of the Sistine Chapel. That will take a lot of posting to cover but WOW, the things we learned.

To say we were moved, is an understatement. The Sistine Chapel rendered me speechless. And to be the complete cornball I am, I was nearly moved to tears. Here was a simple southern girl, standing in the Sistine Chapel. I never thought I would see the day. We also walked 400 steps to the top of the Cupola, which is the highest point of the Vatican city AND Rome. The steps nearly killed us but the view was worth it.

St. Peter s Basilica was overwhelmingly beautiful. It is the largest church in the world. We took in every inch of it, and also did he obligatory touching of the feet of St. Peters statue. At the very end, Howard and I both felt a need to give thanks so we knelt in the last chapel, and both said silent prayers. I gave thanks for being here, for my life, and I made a decision to give all this stress that I ve been feeling…over to God. I was sick of thinking about it. I know he will make the right decisions about my life. I realize that all I can do is my best…I have no control over the rest of it.

While I am not overly religious, I do believe in God and prayer. Praying is not something I have been doing a lot of lately, but for touching my cross, in the airplane, and saying a quick prayer to let us have a safe flight. And maybe it was partly all the walking but last night was the first night in months that I got a full, complete night of sleep. 12 hours to be exact. I woke up with a feeling of peace this morning.

You can travel the world, buy fancy dinners, and expensive things but nothing can ever top the feeling of release and eventual peace in your soul.

So it was a lovely day, and probably one of the most unforgettable places I have ever seen. I am grateful to be able to be here.

Today we will tour the Catacombs and the Ancient Forums, including the spot where Julius Caesar was killed on the Ides of March in 44BC. Wow. Update on that as soon as possible. I am off to get a massage! Life is good!

Jan 25

Spongebob in Italian? Is fucking hilarious.

Jan 24

Hello my lovelies! Your Chris here. Boy, have I been taking a hiatus or what?? Well I made a vow to NOT THINK ABOUT WORK OR ANYTHING ELSE except for vacation on this here…vacation. Well nothing has worked but I’ve managed to stay away from the computer until Howard and I discovered we told his brother the completely wrong time to pick us up at the airport on our flight back from Rome. The hotel had a business center and here I am.

I don’t want to go in to details but I’ve drunk gallons of wine. Stressed out over my family WAY too much already and well, I hate to admit it, but I’ve been pretty wound up since it began.

I blame it on being traumatized from last year’s return from the best vacation ever.

This vacation almost feels like a chore. Yes I will rue the day I admitted that, I realize.

Rome, however, is wonderful. Almost exactly like I expected it and the exceptions are all good. Like thinking that things would be horribly expensive, especially with the current Dollar to Euro exhange rate which is .83 cents to every 1.00. But I just finished a fabulous meal of….and I’m not kidding when I type this:

smoked salmon and shrimp and spinach salad

garbanzo beans with mixed mussels

marinated vegetables

mozzarella balls and ricotta cheese

fried sardines

mixed green salad

escalloped veal

one big honking bottle of wine

and a lemon liquer chaser.

and all of that? was only 51 Euro. FIFTY ONE EURO PEOPLE!

Today we saw the colloseum and tomorrow we will go to the Wednesday Papal service at the Vatican and check out the rest of that amazing city.

This part of the vacation has been fabulous.

I need to go as I have a fresh gelato and croissant waiting for me in the room.

I miss you all!

Ciao!

Jan 14

This will probably be my last post before we leave on vacation. That’s right. VAY-CAY-SHUN!

We’ll be leaving this place for three weeks. I’m terribly excited. But I do have to say….I’ll miss it.

Last night at the bar, after we’d demolished our steaks, we gave in to temptation and actually stayed a while to drink and socialize. Our friends gathered around the table and the conversation flowed. Dusty and I having our usual bout of chatter. Camille and I were swapping stories of our time on the slope. (she worked on an oil rig for three years) Joel and I were talking about good cigars. Howard and Brian were talking about EVERYTHING, like usual. Todd talked to everyone about how he misses Susan (she’s in Oregon right now, and MAN do we miss her too). We all took turns buying rounds for our little circle, all the while, Brian, Camille, and myself kept promising THIS beer will be our last because Brian is a pilot and had 9am flight on Saturday morning (this morning). Camille runs the gas station, and she had to be up at 7:30am and I had to be up at 8:00 to do the books and prepare for the arrival of our relief manager. Yes, we talked about it, but none of that happened. A few more beers later, the cash ran out, THEN AND ONLY THEN did we decide to quit. On our way out, we hugged everyone else that we didn’t get a chance to chat with and Howard and I realized that we really WILL miss this place! What are we going to do without our steak and beer for the next three Fridays? I dare say my heart is heavy. Everyone told us to “hurry back” but “have a great time!”

I confided in Dusty that if we come back off this vacation and are forced to move again? I will choose the option of quitting. I will not be backed against a wall AGAIN. He then asked if we’d stay here in McGrath anyway and I told him we probably would. Just because we love the place. He promised petitioned letters to my boss if it came to that, and if we had to quit, he could find well paying jobs for us easily. Mainly, he was just begging us not to leave. Dusty has become a soulmate. Last night, we were nearly in tears because we don’t know what we’re going to do without each other for three weeks. I promised the occasional phone call, and emails when I can get to a computer. “I LOVE YOU GUYS!” he said as he hugged us both last night.
You gotta love that mayor.

So that’s it for a while folks. I’m certain that my friends, Amy and Tess, will guest post and keep you entertained while I’m away but girlfriends are busy this time of year, so be patient! You guys be good and I’ll see you on the flip side!

Jan 12

Because ya’ll deserve a decent, insanely delicious post. Good Lord, I was thinking about how little and how scant my posts have been over the last few weeks and I’m all embarassed. So, sorry about that.

Now let’s saddle up and climb on our judgemental high horse for a while okay?

Last night, we were watching Nancy Grace. Now, I know there are a lot of people out there who hate her. There are a lot of people out there who absolutely love her. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. I happen to be one of the people who loves her.

She’s the victim’s advocate. The REAL victim’s advocate. YES, she can be over the top at times. YES I know that as a victim of crime herself, she is biased but I like that she has the knowledge to basically back up her shit.

Last night, she was discussing the case of a sexual predator who was sentenced to 60 days in jail and intense psychotherapy. She was understandably upset. A man tortures a little girl for FOUR years and gets 60 days? Tell me the justification in that. The judge said he is tired of putting people behind bars and not seeing them rehabilitated.

Here’s my take on the whole thing:
First of all. A PRISON SENTENCE? IS NOT REHABILITATION! IT’S A PUNISHMENT! For a CRIME! You shouldn’t have any rights. You decided to give that up when you made the decision to commit a heinous act instead of recognizing yourself for the sick fuck you are and getting help before you hurt someone.

So you were sexually abused when you were a child? Well guess what? So was fifty percent of the population, myself included. I am not ashamed. But I dealt with it. I certainly didn’t go out and molest someone else. Nope, I got help, dealt with all my demons and I make it a personal mission to protect children from sick fucks. And A LOT of other people do the same thing. You had a bad childhood so you went out and killed a couple of people? No sympathy here pal. People I love have wrestled guns out of their father’s hands, guns that were intended to kill their mother. Those same people went on to be responsible citizens.

And just what about the victim? What is the judge going to say to that little girl who went through 4 years of hell? Her life will forever be changed. She will never look at the world the same. She will never fully trust anyone. And I might be hating HER years from now, because, God Forbid she does the same thing to someone else. It is a cycle that must be stopped. I can support a person’s need for help…but I believe that person needs to be in a place where he or she can’t do the same thing to some other poor kid.

Studies have clearly shown there is NO cure for this kind of mental illness. Once a sexual predator, always a sexual predator. The responsible ones spend their lives in a good treatment program, and NEVER EVER put themselves into a situation where temptations will arise, thus preventing their own heinous crime.

So, you’ll get no sympathy from me. I’m with Nancy on this one. What that judge did was inexcusable. “Too many tax payers dollars going to people who are never rehabilitated?” Well tough shit. I can PROMISE you, that I will gladly pay my taxes knowing a monster is safe behind bars. Here, you can have my whole paycheck it means another person can go unharmed.

When you decide to break the law, you give up your rights. You had the chance to get help before you did the crime. What makes YOU so special that you couldn’t act like a decent citizen like the rest of us?

AND when will that precious little girl EVER get HER justice. When will she receive HER therapy now that her life is ruined?

Jan 11

…then today I’m definitely a 9.

But Howard loved the Eggplant Parmesan. And though he is sweet to me, he is a harsh critic because he is normally the cook in this family, and he does a very good job, so I guess he has the right to be. I even cut up a beautiful Roma Tomato for him. And I don’t do tomatoes. Ugh.

I did, however, ditch the carrot cake idea because I was pressed for time. So I relied on the old standby, Coconut. Which he loves anyway and always complains because I make it for everyone else EXCEPT for him.

I never told him what I was GOING to make. Didn’t want to ruin his birthday, ya know?

My memaw called and sang Happy Birthday to him. I think she loves him more than me. Waaaah!

Luckily, I’m not the jealous type.

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