Friday, January 11, 2008


Who wants a Slushie?

Sorry I vanished for the past week, I was on vacation. In this day and age of internet, I figured it was better to not tell the world that my wife and I were leaving our house vacant (with ATTACK CATS!) for 4 days. I can't imagine it would be difficult for someone to figure out where I live, so I erred on the side of caution and didn't tell you about our vacation. Yes my seminar is coming up but this trip was planned before that, and I even took some work and actually worked on it some. My seminar has been pushed back a week without my knowledge and hopefully my adviser can make it to this new date.

J and I went skiing in Snowshoe, WV. I have never driven in West Virginia before and was struck by its pastoral peace and beauty. It's all rolling hills and farmland interspersed with small towns and villages. Nice. Quaint. Heart of America. One hand-painted sign I saw said "No Farms, No Food" which is spot-on. The roads were paved using the natural roll and pitch of the surrounding land which made them really fun and interesting to drive, even with the rain creating wet conditions for our arrival and departure. I prefer wet mountain roads to icy mountain roads any day of the week.

We stayed at the Rimfire Lodge in a studio. It had a large bed, comfy couch, lots of spare pillows and blankets and had a full kitchen. The bathroom might have had heated floors, or crappy insulation so the unit below us heated the floor, but either way the rock floor of the bathroom was always pleasantly warm. The gas fireplace was nice (and on a timer, an excellent idea for any gas fireplace) and even warmed the room up a bit. The weather was pleasant but not great snow-making weather. Sun-Wed highs were in the upper 50s to lower 60s and the lows were in the mid-40s. It finally dropped to freezing on Tues. night and made everything nice and icy after slushtastic conditions Sun-Tues.

My back hurts, my neck hurts and my legs hurt. I think that crash on an icy blue slope on Wed. did me in. If the slope was in the sun, it was nice and slushy but if it was in the shade it was icy and nasty. I tried to stop where I shouldn't have and flew backwards and whacked my helmet contained melon pretty good. That was enough skiing that day. Thurs. morning we awoke to a drizzle and a high of 28, so we opted to go home before road conditions got worse and skipped another icy ski day.

I know I rail against Big Pharma fairly regularly here but some of their products work and I proved that yesterday. I took a couple of J's prescription pills and drove the entire 7+ hours home without incident. I love driving on that stuff.

I was way overdue for a speeding ticket and a polite NC State Trooper took care of that streak. He clocked me at 82 in a 70 and dropped it to 80 in a 70 for a revenue generating ticket of $135. Luckily I slowed down to 5 over because not 10 miles later in Virginia I passed another state trooper and almost doubled up on tickets that day. It didn't ruin my spirits because I was overdue for a ticket and was amazed that I received a ticket at 8:30 am on a Sun. morning just a few miles from the NC/VA state line.

More tales tomorrow, and hopefully I'll be revealing another surprise this weekend. No clues, just suspense.

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