19 April 2008

Packing (again)

Well, it's been a really fabulous 44 hours at home, but there's a 0730 flight with my name all over it tomorrow.


I am off to another lovely vacation spot in the American South, this time for a bit of professional military NCO education. It will be, I am certain, absolutely fucking fascinating.

[puts on big girl panties, stops whining]

If it hasn't become obvious, I'm desperately trying to fufill the educational requirements for the next pay grade before...anything happens that might make going to schools impossible. KnowwhatImean?

It's a pretty short one, and at a far more civilized location than the past couple of outings have been. I truly, deeply and honestly believe that I'll be able to keep sharing my sunshine with y'all during this one.

Now, to finish up packing. I'm missing my Army Mandated Pre-Execution Checklist, which I completed at last drill and brought home and which is now...somewhere in this house, in one of the fifty gazillion manila folders we keep tucked in high places so Jack doesn't eat them.

I totally missed this

You all will have to forgive me for recycling old news. I was hanging out in Michigan a week ago when, it seems, Sen. Clinton was throwing a few back in a bar in Indiana.

I have got to admit, I got a kick out of that. Particularly when I asked the Mister, "did that actually happen?" and he replied, "Yep. And she looked like a pro."

...although Clinton is no stranger to late night drinks with the press and her staff, she usually prefers red wine or the trendy wheat ale Blue Moon with a slice of orange, not the watery light beer in the glass mug she waved in the air so proudly as the crowd chanted her name.

Now, of course, this is all part of Hillary's last-ditch attempt to connect as the "regular guy" Democrat. And I think it's pretty effective, particularly when contrasted with Senator Obama's pathetic record of public beer drinkin'.

...the Illinois senator mocked Clinton for taking a shot of whiskey in front of TV cameras. But it's not that Obama hasn't made attempts to connect with voters in a bar, as well — On a bus tour stop on March 28, Obama had a few sips of beer with [Penn. Senator Bob] Casey in front of the press. He did not finish the beer. Emphasis added

This campaign really is getting more entertaining by the day.

I now return you all to normal blogging, which is not based on week-old news.

18 April 2008

Just an aside...

My guard dogs suck. I came home at 0410, opened the garage door, pulled in, got Jack and one bag out of the Jeep, shut the garage door, and opened to door to the house, while talking to the puppy.

Did I get barked at? No. I did not.

Were my legs ripped off by my G. Shepherd? No. They were not.

I was in the kitchen turning the light on before Sparky came blinking out of the bedroom. My fierce, wardog Marine husband? He finally woke up after I shook his knee for several seconds.

And Casey woke up when I turned the bathroom light on. She got petted, then promptly went back to sleep.

Although it's probably technically impossible to successfully invade Bad Dog Central, it seems you can do whatever you want here in the middle of the night as long as you don't drop any plates on the floor.

Look what followed me home

No. Not another dog. No way in Hell.



Cousin Randy won this, I think, at an NRA banquet or something. He goes to a lot of those. He doesn't need it, I might be able to use it, and so it came home with me, with only the vague instruction to see if I could find "something kinda like" my ProCarry to send up to him. Eventually. Someday. No hurry.

I guess that means I can keep it and send him a pistol, or trade it for a pistol for him, or sell it and buy him a pistol, or take no action for quite some time.

I think Randy mostly wanted to send me home with a rifle of the sort I'd told him I was seeking.

It's a Remington 700 in .308. The scope is a Nikon, and I have no idea what the heck the story is with the bipod. Front and rear irons are in a little baggie, along with some sort of green Remington locking safety doohicky. It hasn't been fired.

I was looking more for a .270, but there's not a thing in the world wrong with .308, and it is in fact what the Mister's open-country scoped rifle fires.

It's in the gun room, hanging out with its bipod extended. The Mister ought to be home soon (your tax dollars bailing out of work early!), and I think we'll stand around and scratch our heads and try to figure out its fate.


Depart Hastings, Michigan at 0840 Thursday, arrive Bad Dog Central at 0410 Friday. 1,234 miles in...20.5 hours.

Total cigarettes consumed...roughly 23 in Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky and Tennessee. Another 16 were needed to make it across Arkansas and partway across Texas.

Pushups done at rest stops in order to get blood flowing, roughly 80.

Powdered donuts vomited on the dog bed in the back of my Jeep - 3. But that wasn't until within 100 miles of home, so I just dragged Jack up front, told him it was OK, and put the pedal down.

I know driving that far in one swoop isn't ideal, but when I don't get tired until after the thousand-mile mark, there's no way I'm stopping.

It's nice to be home, and to have slept whatever there was of the night in my own bed, surrounded by the rest of my pack.

14 April 2008


likes motels.

Not only was he allowed on the bed (which never happens in normal life), but interstate motels are chock-full of neat smells.

I was a little intrigued by what might have caused him to sniff wildly at the edge of the bedspread, but I decided I didn't really want to think about it. Sometimes, I think we're all glad that our noses can't tell us as much as dogs' noses tell them.

Hanging out with the fam'

My first morning up here, I did Mandatory Breakfast with Gramma. Her routine involves a 0700 sharp appearance at the Big Boy restaurant in the next town over, and was mildly put out that my Dad insisted a 0800 departure.

Gramma is a Big Boy frequent flier - the other breakfast people all know her, and she has a "usual" order. She waited tables for about 100 years, and feels entirely free to offer helpful input to the breakfast waitresses. Although there is a "please wait to be seated" sign, she ignores it and heads directly to "her" table upon entry.

Yes, she is the Terror of Big Boy.

But it's a community, and she enjoys participating in it. She won a quilt in a cancer benefit raffle there a couple of years back (after her brush with esophogeal cancer), and paid that win back by knitting an afghan for their most recent raffle.

Gramma is a...brisk woman, and although I wasn't there when she donated the afghan, I can imagine her thumping it down on the counter and directing the nearest staff member, "You's can use this in your next cancer raffle," then heading out the door with absolutely no further discussion.

Small towns and their gathering places are wonderful because there's a place in them for every character, even the afghan-knitting Terror of Big Boy.