Sunday, September 28, 2008

Quote of the Day

An election is coming. Universal peace is declared and the foxes have a sincere interest in prolonging the lives of the poultry.
~ T.S. Eliot

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Post Turtle

I received this email today from my friend, Jennie and it made me giggle...

While suturing a cut on the hand of a 75-year old Texas rancher whose hand was caught in a gate while working cattle, the doctor struck up a conversation with the old man. Eventually the topic got around to Sarah Palin and her bid to be a heartbeat away from being President. The old rancher said, "Well, ya know, Palin is a post turtle."
Not being familiar with the term,the doctor asked him what a post turtle was. The old rancher said, "When you're driving down a country road and you come across a fence post with a turtle balanced on top, that's a post turtle."
The old rancher saw a puzzled look on the doctor's face, so he continued to explain. "You know she didn't get up there by herself, she doesn't belong up there, she doesn't know what to do while she is up there, and you just wonder what kind of dumb ass put her up there to begin with."

Friday, September 26, 2008

New Zealand #6

Ok, so my bad for not posting this one earlier, but here is the last of my New Zealand trip. If you want to read from the beginning, click here.

Hello All! Greetings from Tauranaga, New Zealand. I'm in a hostel right off the coast: I can smell the salt air and hear the ocean, and I can't believe I have to come home in 2 days... agh!

Anyways, yesterday afternoon I visited the Rotorua Museum and enjoyed the special exhibit of paintings "The Face" - a bunch of portraits ranging from 1400s to present day art. Very cool. Also in the museum was an exhibit about New Zealand's efforts during World War II which I had never known about (Sorry Kevin, they don't teach us NZ history in the States).

Afterwards I witnessed a Maori wedding and the traditional dress which was kind of cool, it was being held in the gardens of the Museum and I walked out into it accidently on purpose:) I would have been able to continue to watch but a group of English tourists also came over to watch and they weren't exactly quiet so we all were asked to leave. (SIDENOTE: I know people think Americans are the rudest travelers but in my experiences in the past two weeks, the Bristish run a very close second... everytime I've got a good angel on a photo or I'm enjoying a quiet moment or whatever... the damn British tourists come thundering through. They're also quite snotty and rude to Americans - I got attacked on my wine tasting tour about George Bush. I just ignored the guy b/c he was drunk but still. RUDE)

Then I walked down to the waterfront park where they were holding a charity concert. I'm not certain who the charity was but it seemed to be a big deal as there was 100s of people there. I had gotten in line to get drink and I placed my order and the guy behind me said, "Are you from the US?" in a voice that only a southern boy could have. He turned out to be from Panama City, Florida and he goes to the University of Florida... he was so excited to met someone else from the US. He's over here for his last semester and has been traveling about for 3 weeks - says he hasn't seen any other Americans. I think he's a tad bit homesick. He was also at the concert by himself so we hung out for the rest of the night. Nice Kid. The concert was for the finalists of the New Zealand Idol's first season so it was sugary pop music but at the end they had an amazing fireworks show. It was a charity but also in celebration of today which is Waitanga Day (I know I've misspelled that - sorry) which is kind of New Zealand day - the day they were given their rights. They had Maori dancers there so I was able to see Haka (pronounced huk - a) which is the Maori War Dance again which is exciting every time.

This morning I got up early and went to pick up my rental car ( yes, I gave up on the whole bus thing b/c I kept getting queasy and it would ruin my day plus the bus time tables were not cooperating with my desire to see as much as possible in the last couple of days). So I'm doing pretty well driving on the wrong side of the road... now if I could just remember that the blinker is on the other side and quit turning on my windshield wipers everytime I try to turn! But it's been nice to drive b/c I can stop at anytime. Plus I got a great deal - they needed the car back in Auckland by Tuesday morning so I only have to pay for the gas and insurance... no rental fee. Good stuff.

I left Rotorua and stopped at Hell's Gates... named by George Bernard Shaw... who must have been a big baby b/c I wasn't impressed. It was a gathering of thermal pools which were cool to see but not scary. It was on the way to Tauranga so it worked out well and I got some good pictures. Then I stopped at Kiwi360 which is a kiwi fruit farm and bought my lunch... yummie stuff.

Next was the town of Tauranga which is a seaside town and port. I dropped my stuff at the hostel and headed on to the town of Mr. Mauranga (again misspelling this but I don't have my book with me). It's the next town up the coast and has a mountain on the pennisula which you can hike. That was my plan but when I got to the beach entrance, there was a Surf Lifeguard Competition going on.... grandstands and everything so I stopped to watch that. It was so cool. I have never seen anything like that... the surf was huge and they were swimming in it like it was nothing! I stayed there for a couple of hours... just long enough to get a little color (I put on sunscreen every 30 minutes but the sun is INTENSE).
Then I tried to go on up the mountain but they had closed off the trails b/c the helicopters (ER and TV) for the competition were landing on the coast side so no dice there.

So I went back and drove out to McLaren Falls - had a nice little hike up to some very wimpy falls but still enjoyed myself with the scenery and the flowers.

Then I drove over to Minton Road Lookout which was AMAZING... you could see FOREVER. I drive past it tomorrow again on my way into Auckland so if it's clear I'm going to go back up there for hopefully some better pictures b/c this afternoon had gotten hazy.
And so now I'm back at the hostel and I'm about to go search for dinner. Tomorrow, I'm making my way back to Auckland up the Corramandel Pennisula (again, spelling) and whatever else catches my eye. One of the girls I met in Wellington lives there and she emailed me to met up for dinner so I guess that takes care of my last night here.
Alright folks, you'll probably hear from me one more time before I'm back on American soil. And just in case you missed it, The All Blacks won the Sevens Rugby Tournament which is a HUGE deal and all they're talking about here.

And the Simpsons trully is the most universal TV program... it's always on over here - every hostel I have stayed at, someone is always watching the Simpsons...

Love you all!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Quote of the Day

The best things in life are nearest: Breath in your nostrils, light in your eyes, flowers at your feet, duties at your hand, the path of right just before you. Then do not grasp at the stars, but do life's plain, common work as it comes, certain that daily duties and daily bread are the sweetest things in life.
~Robert Louis Stevenson

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Quote of the Day

People often say that, in a democracy, decisions are made by a majority of the people. Of course, that is not true. Decisions are made by a majority of those who make themselves heard and who vote - a very different thing.
~Walter H. Judd

Friday, September 19, 2008

"Beware Women"

I received this email from my sister today:

Incident has been confirmed. In Katy , TX
A man came over and offered his services as a painter to a female putting gas in her car and left his card. She said no ,but accepted his card out of kindness and got in the car. The man then got into a car driven by another gentleman. As the lady left the service station, she saw the men following her out of the station at the same time. Almost immediately, she started to feel dizzy and could not catch her breath. She tried to open the window and realized that the odor was on her hand; the same hand which accepted the card from the gentleman at the gas station.
She then noticed the men were immediately behind her and she felt she needed to do somethingat that moment. She drove into the first driveway and began to honk her horn repeatedly to ask for help. The men drove away but the lady still felt pretty bad for several minutes after she could finally catch her breath. Apparently, there was a substance on the card that could have seriously injured her. This drug is called 'BURUNDANGA ' and it is used by people who wish to incapacitate a victim in order to steal from or take advantage of them.
This drug is four times more dangerous than the date rape drug and is transferable on simple cards. So take heed and make sure you don ' t accept cards at any given time alone or from someone on the streets. This applies to those making house calls and slipping you a car d when they offer their services . PLEASE SEND THIS E-MAIL ALERT TO EVERY FEMALE YOU KNOW

I read the email and then read it again. Debated it in my head and then I forwarded it to my female friends... And I wonder. Is it true? Are these scary 'warning' forwards based in fact? How would I feel if I didn't send it to a friend and then something happened to one of them. How responsible would I feel?

Being aware is always best and knowing what to watch for is the best defense. I hate, absolutely hate, the idea of being afraid of life. It's not how I like to live... I refuse to be afraid in my own house, I refuse to not walk my dog alone at dusk because it might get dark, I refuse to be skittish when I'm alone. But I do stay aware.

So pass this along. Warn the women in your life. Don't be scared of life but do be aware.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Princess Luciana Pignatelli

Doesn't that just sound like a name of someone who leads a glamorous life?

It makes me think of yatchs, Monte Carlo, large sunglasses, perfect hair, and a sexy voice.

She was also the author of "The Beautifl People's Beauty Book" (note the irony of the title - if you're already beautiful, do you need a beauty book? Or does it mean this is how to get beautiful?). Inside is beauty advice by horoscope....

Aries must have frequent dental check-ups.
Taurus should marry a man of means.
Gemini, often the face is too long or the nose is too long or big.
Cancer tends to be lazy about beauty and should be encouraged to make the effort.
Leo, if ambitions are not fulfilled, can have difficult menopause.
Virgo remains surprisingly youthful despite hypochondriac tendency.
Libra rarely gets fat.
Sagittarius is torn between bright, amusing men who are good talkers and her desire for a solid social position.
Scorpio is hypersexual and often attracted to men who are her inferiors.
Capricorn is always well turned-out and insists on quality in clothes.
Aquarius is often slightly neurotic and with fragile health.
Pisces, feet are the weak point and pedicures essential.

*As usual, I stole this from another blog: A cup of Jo One day I promise to be original... until then I pass along what amuses and inspires me.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Quote of the Day

For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.
-Audrey Hepburn

Monday, September 15, 2008

My Daybook

I got this from one of my new favorite blogs to read: pilgrimsteps. She's a History PhD graduate student in my old California stompin' grounds, Orange County with a husband and two cute kids. She's a very talented and thoughtful writer. I thought it was a fun exercise.

I am wearing a black wrap dress over a white camisole. And impossibly high black croc heels. Of course.

I am reading a series of presidental biographies right now - I realized I didn't know much about the Johnson Administration when it was being referenced in another book so I started with him and now I'm working on Nixon. History class in school always seemed to stall out at WWII so I'm self-educating.

I am hearing Sugarland's new album and some construction noises from the warehouses behind us.

I am thankful to be moved into my new place... I still have some work to do but I'm sleeping there and it's beginning to feel like 'home'.

I am hoping for a productive work week and a good night with my DLS (he's supposed to come over after a month-long break).

I am creating a home and a life for myself in my small town. I cleaned my porches yesterday and next weekend I plan to tackle the yard. I've never done yardwork or planted flowers, etc. But I am determined to be a good tenant and neighbor and find pleasure in creating myself a place in this as an adult. I'm starting a supper club with some other 'young' people and my calendar is starting to fill up. I will be more than my job.

I am thinking about my goals... I have spoken with numerous people/advisors/mentors about where I need to go and what I need to do to get there. Now I need to decide my course, determine specific goals and a timeline, and focus on making my life be as I want it.

I have wonderful and caring parents who support and encourage me at all times. They took me to dinner last night and I had such a good time, talking and discussing events. I enjoy my relationship with them more than I can express - I enjoy them as individuals and I feel so thankful to have them as parents.

I am excited for the fall - it's my favorite time of the year! This fall is busy with weddings, babies and moving our business! I have so much I want to accomplish and I enjoy the development side of our business. I can't wait to bundle up for a football game and to feel the snap in the air as it gets colder.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Quote of the Day

Politicians are like diapers. They both need changing regularly and for the same reason. ~Author Unknown

Politics as usual...

I am a frequent reader of - I've mentioned that on here before. I think the whole world reads her so that's not impressive in and of itself. Last week she commented on the Republican VP Nomination and her reaction to the ticket. And it got a lot of her readers talking. It's the first time that I've read through the comments section of her site. People were throwing out opinions, statistics, criticisms, and articles. I'm providing those links here becuase I've enjoyed reading them and learning more about the candidate from Alaska. Plus it's always nice to have your thoughts summed up by someone else in a clear and concise way!

Hilary Rosen's Commentary: Sarah Palin, right and wrong is intelligently written and points out the differences in the standards McCain/Palin hold for themselves versus what they believe in acceptable for others in this country.

Maureen Dowd's (my favorite!) article in the NY Times Opinion Section, Vice in Go-Go Boots compares the Republican Ticket to an unrealistic chick flick. It hits a couple of points home and also hits upon the point of the insulting expectation that women will vote for McCain/Palin just to have a woman in the White House.

I am, of course, not as left as any of those listed above. I don't want entitlement programs, the government anywhere near healthcare, and I believe that if we all were responsible and contributing members of society (including corporations) then we wouldn't need widespread government programs becuase we'd all be taking care of our own.

But I can't forget being verbally attacked by a British Man while in New Zealand a couple of years ago after George W. won his second term... I'd very much like to travel abroad as an American and not be thought of as stupid, selfish, close minded and uncaring. We've got a long way to go in our foreign relations and I know McCain isn't the person for the job.

I am really enjoying the conversations and attention paid to this election - yes, it's historic for many reasons as whichever ticket wins will bring a first to the White House. And it's exciting to hear of people who haven't ever registered and/or voted say they are going to participate in our electorial process for the first time. The average age of the voting population will,hopefully, decrease. The amount of peopling voting will hopefully increase, making this election truly more representative of the country overall. It's a lot to take in and think about as the election nears and I know this won't be the last post but I promise not to let it take over my world either.

Anyways, all the above was thought provoking for me and I enjoy passing along intelligent and well-written opinions, so read, enjoy, argue, think and most importantly, VOTE!!!

Monday, September 8, 2008

My bad. My bad.

So I kind of took the week off last week, I didn't give much warning either. I sorry.

Between the holiday weekend, trying to move and going out of town for a work retreat, I wasn't at my desk very much. Which was really nice but I am paying for it today... such as it is. Trying to catch-up is never much fun.

But I am MOVED IN!!! So nice.

The only thing I have left to do is get my t.v. set up but I have to buy a new cable so that probably won't happen until this weekend. I'm such a girl. Although, my slackerness has caused me to miss the Republican Convention, the premier of 90210 (the remake) and the VMAs. I might need to bump it up on the priority list - especially if something major happens on "The Hills" tonight....

I love my house... although, it's got a lot more space than I need or thought. I'll grow into, I know. And there's always an adjustment period. It sure is nice to have my stuff again. My mom and I kept pulling things out of the attic and the basement. It was like, "oh yeah, that's mine". It was great!

I'll take pictures soon and post them.

Quote of the Day

I do not believe that women are better than men. We have not wrecked railroads, nor corrupted legislatures, nor done many unholy things that men have done; but then we must remember that we have not had the chance.
--Jane Addams, in a speech to the Chicago Political Equality League in 1897