Archive for the ‘IRL’ Category

Heritage

September 25, 2014

I haven’t mentioned it yet, but we decided last week to take a break from raiding until the 6.0 patch. Suddenly, activities that I had been considering but unable to do because they happened to be on raid nights were all open to me. One of the first pieces of mail that arrived at my new address was a booklet of community education courses. I could learn a new language, pick up knitting, do some exercise classes (Lord knows I need more of that) or … hey, line dancing. That looks like fun. I also looked at upcoming polkas and found two local clubs that hold monthly meetings/dances. Hmmm, the one I chose is on Wednesday just like the line dancing classes. Line dancing … polkas … line dancing … polkas … classes that I have to pay for in advance and attend for 8 weeks in a row, or only happen once a month and I come if I want and pay when I get there. Yup, polkas win!

So last night I got all gussied up and left the house to go polka. I drove out to the VFW, told the ladies at the table that it was my first time there, plunked down my cash and bam. I’m a member. I even got a membership card. :D

I sat at a table off to the side by myself where I had a good view of everything … the other tables, the dance floor, and the band. There was about 10 minutes still before the music would start, but the doors had opened nearly an hour earlier so people could enjoy snacks and chitchat. Since I didn’t know anyone, I didn’t bother to get there early. After a few minutes, a man came around selling 50/50 tickets. I said no thank you but I guess he didn’t hear me, but he was very nice and I didn’t want to be rude, so I went ahead and bought some. He introduced himself, asked my name, and asked if it was my first visit even though I could tell that he knew very well that it was. You know, just friendly ice-breaking. And of course, asked if I was Polish … I told him no, but I am Czech, that’s close enough ya?

I happen to live in a city that has a very large Polish population. There’s a weekly Polish newsletter and a radio station that plays no less than 2 hours of polkas a day, 7 days a week…during the 5pm-7pm drive home. After a rough day at work nothing brings a smile to my face faster than a polka. If it happens to include a HUP, HUP, HUP-AH from the performer that smile will quickly turn into a big grin. You see, I grew up in an area that had a very large Czech population … in fact, my grandmother was pure Czech. So I expected to get asked many times whether I was Polish, and in fact I did get asked several times, but since I could truthfully say ‘No, but I am Czech (mostly)’ that gave me plenty of polka cred.

Anyway, as soon as the music started, couples were out on the floor. I watched carefully, hoping I would remember what to do if someone happened to ask me to dance. Now, if you’ve ever watched, you’ll know that each man sort of has his own style. Some are more flamboyant, some barely move, some like to have their lady turn in a circle every so often (my Dad did that. He’s probably the last person I danced with before last night). After about three songs, the man who had been selling the tickets asked me to dance. I said sure I’ll try but it’s been 20 years so be patient with me. Well it worked out alright, I was rusty but not terrible. A couple of songs later, another little man asked me to dance. I had seen him and his wife out there for every song so far. Like the first man, he introduced himself and asked my name and asked if it was my first time there. After that dance ended he said I should move over to their table instead of sitting by myself, so I could talk to people, so I did. I met his wife and the other couples at the table. They all expressed surprise that I came all by myself but hey, if it’s either go alone or don’t go at all, well …

I danced with him a few more times over the night. And the band didn’t just play polkas and waltzes, they did mix in some other things as well. So naturally when (ugh) Achy Breaky Heart was played (I curse you, Billy Ray, you killer of good country music) the ladies waved me out there and I was like, um … I don’t know how! Apparently I have not spent enough time watching my Tauren huntress /dance because one of the guys had to take me to the side and attempt to teach me to electric slide. Hey look, I didn’t need to go to the line dancing class after all, I can learn it at the polka!

Halfway through the band takes a break and they have the meeting. We actually stood and said the Pledge of Allegiance to open. Who still does that? That is awesome. I had to stand up when they introduced the new members. At the end of it we played a quick round of Bingo because that was the theme this month, then the drawings. It wasn’t a straight 50/50, they do 3 or 4 for various amounts, then had a few other prizes too, like coozies and a polka CD. I like that better than one drawing for a big amount, it’s more fun with more chances to win something. Afterwards there was more dancing and then it ended with everyone in a huge circle holding hands as we sang God Bless America.

So, I may have come alone, but by the end of the night I had made several acquaintances and I guarantee when I go next month, I may arrive alone but I won’t be alone when I get there.

P.S. This really has nothing to do with Mount & Blade: With Fire and Sword but it does somewhat explain part of the reason the game has such a grip on me!

My Pets

August 1, 2014

No, not my WoW pets. My *real* ones. My cat grooms my dog all the time and he LOVES it. He’ll snuggle up next to him and look at him like ‘well? I’m here! Groom me!’ It’s pretty hilarious.

Monica

July 8, 2014

I didn’t post last week. Oops! Well, I’ve mentioned before that it’s the busy season at my work. And it’s about to get busier, since this little gal just went on exhibit yesterday.

IMG_20140702_091544_756

On top of that, I have some other IRL things going on that are taking up a fair bit of my free time. I can’t say what just yet but I’m sure I’ll have something to say about it later!

As far as games go, I’m logging on to raid. And uh … well, that Sims3 addiction hasn’t let go yet. And I still have a few games from the Steam sale to check out.

So I’m still here, not going anywhere! At least not for long.

Happy New Year

January 4, 2013

I am back. Ok fine, I’ve been back for a few days, but I had to raid two of the last three nights and didn’t get my pics from vacation uploaded until last night, so you just had to wait.

Yes, this is pretty much off-topic. Deal with it. :)

So I went on a cruise with my parents and my brother and his girl. We left from Ft. Lauderdale…

Ft. Lauderdale

on this huge ship, Ruby Princess.

Ruby Princess at Princess Cays

Our first stop was at Princess Cays, on the island of Eleuthera in the Bahamas. There is no dock there large enough for a cruise ship, so we were transported ashore using the lifeboats, which they call tenders.

Tenders transport us to Princess Cays

We spent Christmas Day at sea, then docked at St. Maarten/St. Martin. It is half Dutch, and half French. Well, not quite half … the Dutch side is 16 sq. mi. and the French side is 21 sq. mi. We docked on the Dutch side, along with 5 other cruise ships! It was a very busy day for Philipsburg. The rest of the family went shopping while I went horseback riding!

Me and Wende

We even got to ride in the sea.

Me and Wende

The next day was St. Thomas, in the Virgin Islands. I went to Magen’s Bay to the beach with my parents.

Mom and Tom at Magen's Bay

I found a nature trail there and got to see a few interesting things.

St. Thomas

We caught up to my brother before getting back on the ship.

Mom, James, and Brooke - St. Thomas

Time to move on. All aboard!

Ruby Princess in port at St. Thomas

The final day was Grand Turk, in the Turks & Caicos. This one was my favorite, partly because the island is home to all of these wild donkeys.

Grand Turk

They were once used to help harvest salt from the sea, but once the salt trade dried up (har har) they were all set free and allowed to roam the island freely.

harvested salt - Grand Turk

They are rounded up in early January and kept all together at a sanctuary for part of the year, because there is not enough food and water to sustain them naturally. The island gets very little rainfall and has sparse vegetation.
Grand Turk

Dinner on the ship every night was one of the highlights of the trip. We had a four course meal at the same table every night, same time, same waiters. Here I am surrounded by hot Filipinos … hey, it’s just like being in SR!

Russel, me, and Joel

So now I’m back to 30 degrees, snow, and wind. But I did kinda miss my internets. And my pet battles … I got a scourged whelpling last night! ^.^

Ok next post will be back to WoW stuffs.


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