twicketface: (Default)
Yesterday was a pretty speedy day by my account. Work zipped by and I got to surprise Marie with a pizza for dinner. Cheese and pineapple, and I get the leftovers for lunch. What a deal! Spent most of the evening either watching the 49ers spank the Jets or play some Fallout. I’m not liking the game as much as I thought I would, but I think Fallout 2 will be much better. The game is confusing to me (which isn’t all that hard to do) and there are a lot of characters to keep track of. Good thing I can just keep starting over with the knowledge I get and replay it. It’s still pretty fun to shoot people in the crotches though.

I’m working on laying out an interview that incorrigible James Squeaky that he did with the guy from http://www.charmbracelet.com. I figure out that with all the time I spend on MisterRidiculous.com I should be contributing to it, in some small way, besides my half-assed columns. Should have that done by tomorrow.

Tonight I’m either going to face off against Coach Combo in our Madden League (me being the Seahawks, him being the Chargers) or do some reading and stuff. Talk about a coin toss.

Oh, I almost forgot. Go to http://www.rwprod.com/wedding/ if you want to see wedding pictures that Marie’s friend Russ took. Good stuff all around.

More later, eat now.
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Marie and I woke up Tuesday around 8:30am and got right to work. We sorted through our gifts, dropped off our film at Target from the honeymoon, got some groceries, had a plant delivered from my friend Anne (which totally rocked, thanks again Anne!), talked to some friends and family to let them know we had returned, went through our mail and emails that had been backlogged and various other cleaning duties of the apartment.

Tuesday night we went to my parent’s house to get our cards from the wedding and also to watch our wedding tape that Marie’s uncle Loren taped for us, which turned out beautifully. Got a flat tire on the way to my parent’s house, but better Tuesday night than when we were coming back from Chicago.

Spent most of last night going through our cards, taping our wedding video to distribute to our parents and continuing our Rummy 5 Million tournament.

I’m tired of typing right now, so I’ll end it right here. Hope to get back to a regular journal schedule now that I’m back, and will be posting pictures from the honeymoon/wedding as soon as I can get them scanned in (most probably this weekend).

Thanks to everyone who was involved in our wedding or even there in spirit (yes, you too Justin) for making it such a wonderful occasion. It couldn’t have gone any better, unless face to face would have been our band instead of our DJ. Oh well.
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Marie and I made our way to Chicago around 8:30 or so, after a 5 hour road trip from Wausau after the gift opening on Sunday the 5th. We checked into the Sheraton hotel (about 10 minutes from O’Hare) and made our way to our room. We stayed at the hotel so we could keep our car parked at the hotel instead of O’Hare for the week. We got into our room, repacked a few things for the honeymoon (lightening our baggage load by a bit) and got ready for bed. The shuttle to take us to O’Hare ran from the hotel every 20 minutes. So we set our alarm for 4:00 am (as our flight was scheduled to leave at 7:00am and we were to be there 2 hours early) and went to bed.

Woke up what felt like 45 minutes later but actually turned out to be 4am and got our stuff ready to go. Wearily made our way to the lobby where there were about 8 or so other people with bags packed to head to O’Hare as well. Took the shuttle to the airport without incident and quickly got into line to get checked in. We had our forms of ID (Driver’s licenses and birth certificates), airline tickets, information packets and various other pieces of information in hand to be checked in. Everything went smoothly and I even got a seat near an emergency exit, so I would have an empty space directly in front of me instead of a seat, for added leg room. So far, so good.

We made our way to our gate and sat for a good hour and a half, waiting to board our place. We played some cards and talked for a bit, but I was pretty nervous to concentrate on anything. I hadn’t flown since a family trip to Florida about 10 years ago, and was a little worried about puking on the plane. Well, not on the plane, but in the plane.

We got our boarding call and got onto the plane. It was a little cramped and freezing, but it was cool at the same time. We got situated and waited to get off the ground. The trip was fine, but I did take a Dramamine after I felt a little queasy. We were served breakfast on the flight, I got the cheese omelet and Marie had the apple pancakes. The scariest part was the food was really, really good.

We touched down in St. Lucia around 12:30 or so and de-boarded the plane. The plane was going on to Aruba after the St. Lucian people got off, but for some reason everyone had to get off the plane (I think they said they had to clean it or something). We collected our luggage and went through customs with our forms of ID yet again.

Point of trivia that is probably only of interest to me: Just prior to going through customs, I had to use the bathroom. There was a small men’s room in the airport and the first thing I noticed was the urinal I used was made by Armitage Shanks, a toilet company that Green Day has a song named after (it was on Insomniac). I sort of wish I had my camera, but bringing a camera into the men’s room wasn’t the impression I wanted to give to the natives (or my fellow travelers, for that matter).

Anyway, after customs we rounded the corner and came to a shuttle stand where we found the area for our hotel (Wyndham Morgan) and had our bags loaded into the extended van. We talked to our vacation rep and got into the van. The airport we flew into was in the southern part of the island, and it was about an hour and a half drive from the airport to our hotel. The drive to the hotel was pretty cool, because it was along the coastline and we got to see so much of the island that we would have missed had we flown in closer to the resort. The terrain was very hilly and beautiful and we got to see a lot of the greenery of the island.

We arrived at the hotel and got our bags out of the back and proceeded to check in. It was strange to be in an open-air front desk of a hotel, I’m just so used to having walls. We got checked in, an employee with an extended golf cart loaded up our luggage and drove us to our room (#202). We got our stuff, entered our room and noticed that as nice as the room was, the two twin beds didn’t really fit into our honeymoon plans. We called the front desk and soon had our new room (#484) with a nice, king sized bed. Our room was, despite being pink, well decorated. We had our own private balcony, a safe, refrigerator, it was very plush.

We got settled and unpacked some of our things, relieved to have a place to call ‘home’, if only for a week. By this time Marie and I were pretty exhausted and hungry (with not having any lunch), so we went to check out the food scene. There are two restaurants on the resort. Both were buffets except for the one restaurant (Tradewinds Restaurant) requiring reservations for dinner. So we headed to the other restaurant (Palm Grill), has some great Italian food (we later found out that each night was a theme night) and headed back to our hotel room to crash. We went to bed around 7:00 or so at night, happy but wiped out.

We awoke the next morning to housekeeping knocking on our door. A quick look at the room’s clock radio revealed that it was 6:30 in the morning. We called out for them to come back later and were shocked to realize that we slept for almost 12 hours. I turned on the TV and made my way to the TV Guide channel (St. Lucia gets the TV broadcast from South Florida) and saw that it was not 6:30am, but really 9:30 am. We learned that our clock radio didn’t keep time and that we were more exhausted than we originally thought.

Since some of the days blended together in my memory, here is a list of the highlights:

Food/Drinks:
Marie and I ate like royalty during the week. Both restaurants had fantastic food and lots of it. Since it was an all inclusive resort, we didn’t have to worry about budgeting for our food and drinks, which was nice. There was a bar open in the lounge from 10:00am until 1:30am, so we could basically get refreshments any time we wanted to. While Marie and I were waiting to check in, a woman from the lounge walked over with a ‘welcoming drink’ for the new arrivals. Marie and I instantly became intoxicated with the non-alcoholic fruit punch and lived on it for the duration of our honeymoon. It had a slight hint of banana and strawberry and was a little thicker than regular fruit juice. Only complaint about the drinks was that my Coke was watery more often than not, but I guess we were roughing it.

Weather:
The weather was beautiful the whole time we were there. It did rain every day, but usually for no longer than 15 minutes. Except for the time Marie and I rented a paddle boat, were out in the water and got thoroughly drenched. The sun was pretty intense, so we took refuge in the shade and didn’t spend a whole lot of time in the sun. We got to swim multiple times everyday and had a great time in the sun. Weather was in the 80s the whole time we were there, and our air-conditioned room felt good after a day on the beach.

Other resort dwellers:
I was surprised to notice a lot of European vacationers and English accents while in St. Lucia. It was nice to have some diversity in our fellow vacationers but the plethora of Speedos was, at times, more than I could bear. Everyone was nice and considerate, but I was surprised at the number of kids on the resort. Never a bother, but why bring a toddler to a Carribean island on vacation?

Hotel itself:
I think that Marie and I did a great job on picking our destination and the resort as well. It was very well kept and clean. The staff was always friendly and helpful for us Yankees.

Points of interest:
On Tuesday evening, after dinner, we were approached by a local merchant selling seashell jewelry (he quickly tied a necklace around my neck and an ankle bracelet around Marie’s ankle). He also gave me a heaping handful (were talking my hands, so it was heaping) of loose shells as well, all for $10. I figured that he was a local guy, just trying to survive and it didn’t bother me. The next night, he was in the same spot, only this time a security worker was talking with him. The merchant was yelling loudly at the security guard in another language. The resort has a rule that merchants can’t operate on the resort itself and I think the merchant got ‘caught’ selling shells. On the one hand, I can see the resort’s desire to keep it’s customers safe from being conned, but here is a guy trying to make a living, just like the workers on the resort. I think the guy should have been allowed to sell his stuff, but it wasn’t my call to make.

On Wednesday Marie and I spotted a pirate ship on the horizon. I claimed it was from The Goonies while Marie remained adamant that it was from The Princess Bride. One of the many ‘debates’ we had while on vacation.

On Thursday, while walking into the Sea to go swimming, I stepped on a crab (or a large crayfish). It freaked me out, since I thought it was a rock, but probably not nearly as much as it freaked out the crab (or large crayfish). Sorry buddy. I did see him scurry away so I didn’t squish the little guy.

Also on Thursday, Marie and I saw a furniture commercial for a place called Badcock’s. Yeah, I’m serious. 1-800-Bad-Cock. Call them up and see if they have T-shirts or something. Thursday night we also got to see a local band ‘rock out’ which was really cool. They were intense and played a lot of good tunes, mostly stuff we knew. Marie and I slow danced and also joined the congo-line. As if I wasn’t sweaty enough!

Friday we watched The Big Lebowski before dinner (we got HBO and Skinamax). What a thoroughly fucked up movie. I didn’t really like it but thought John Goodman was funny as always.

Sunday we watched Payback, an almost equally-as-fucked up movie as TBL. Games of Connect Four and Boggle also took place, with Marie winning the bulk of them.

The Trip Home:
Monday we got packed up and ready to leave. Checked out of the hotel and took our van back to the airport. Got our stuff loaded up and were ready to go home. Since the trip to St. Lucia included a stop off in Aruba after we got off, we had to head through Aruba on the way to O’Hare. I’m sure Aruba is a nice vacation destination, but their airport is pretty fucked up. We landed, filled out an immigration form, got our baggage, went through immigration, re-checked our baggage, went through customs, picked up our baggage again!, checked in our baggage again and went to board the plane. It was thoroughly confusing but what the hell, we made it. Trip back to O’Hare was pretty uneventful, I got even more leg room (Marie and I were close to the stewardess’ area, so we had about 2 feet of leg room in front of us,) which I gladly took advantage of. We landed in O’Hare around 10:00 at night.

After getting our luggage, we took the shuttle back to our Sheraton hotel to reclaim the car. Originally we planned to stay over at Liz’s house (in Chicago) but I was so ready to just go home and crash, I decided to bite the bullet and drive back to Oshkosh at 11:00 at night. We phone Liz to let her know, got the car packed up and hit the road. The trip home was rather uneventful, with us arriving into our parking spot outside our apartment at 2:00am on Tuesday. We grabbed our stuff, went inside and pretty much crashed.

In retrospect, it was a perfect honeymoon. The destination was great, spending the majority of our days lounging on the beach, drinking pina coladas and reading was pretty great (I read Animal Farm, The Street Lawyer, Living the Simple Life, an Adbusters magazine, an Utne Reader magazine, and an Oprah Magazine during my vacation). We just knew we had a lot of work to do once we did get home with taking care of post-wedding stuff.

Incidentially, Marie and I took the time over the course of the honeymoon to descretely moon each other, thus making it an official 'honeymoon'. Yes, it rocked.
twicketface: (Default)
So, here’s a recap of the wedding that made me a husband. It’s still a blur but I’ll do the best I can.

Friday night (8/3) we had our rehearsal at the church and the rehearsal dinner afterwards. Everything went smoothly and as planned. Spent some of the time afterwards decorating the hall and getting some other things in order. The hotel did have a mini-arcade which included the original version of Paperboy (with the dirt bike handlebars to control the game). The game is much harder than I remember and I fear my hand-eye coordination was not what it was when I was 12.

Saturday morning began with breakfast with my groomsmen at the hotel restaurant. Due to a mix-up by either our waitress or the cook, the 5 of us ate for about $3.00 total. We were getting things free left and right because my brother had turkey in his omelet (instead of ham) and Eric had ham in his omelet (instead of chicken). My pancakes turned out with just the right amount of meat in them, so I had no complaints.

Afterwards, we took a quick swim in the pool and headed up to get ready. Marie and I wanted to take care of some pictures before the ceremony to save time. There is a retreat center not far from the hotel that provided the perfect background for our pictures. We took them of Marie’s parents, step-dad and brother, my parents and also the wedding party. It was hotter than a bugger but I’ll take heat over rain on a wedding day. We then rode from the retreat center to the church to get things ready for the wedding. We rented an extended van (with air conditioning!) to take us to our destinations, which was great. We got ready in the basement of the church and proceeded with the ceremony.

I was walked down the isle by parents and as soon as I hugged my mom (before she sat down) I was almost in tears. I think the whole moment was really catching up to me and what I was about to embark upon. Marie and I were living together for over a year before we got married, so it wasn’t as much of a ‘huge change’ as it could have been, but here I was getting married to the woman I love and getting a little emotional at the same time. Next our wedding party made their way down the isle and then came Marie. She was walked down the isle by her mom and dad and then joined me on ‘center stage’ for the ceremony.

We had Marie’s cousin Becky, my uncle Gary, and Marie’s grandfather read for the wedding, which was great. Marie’s uncle Loren videotaped the ceremony and reception and did such a good job with the videotaping. He was using our camcorder, so I wasn’t sure how it was going to go. We watched the video last night (the 14th) and were blown away by how great it was. I probably need a separate video card to upload video clips to my computer, but I’ll consult my owner’s manual to see if it can be done, because that would be pretty damn cool. The ceremony was beautiful and everything went according to plan. After Marie and I walked down the isle (and after the wedding party followed us) we went back and dismissed people by row. That way, it was a little more personal and we got to talk to everyone there, if for only a little bit.

The worst thing that happened at the church (which we didn’t find out until Sunday morning) was that the room where the girls got ready in (down in the basement) had their purses for the duration of the ceremony. Someone went to the church basement and went through them, helping themselves to the contents (probably about $150 or so). I suppose it would be pretty easy to do for someone familiar with the church. In my heart of hearts, I do hope it was someone who truly needed the money and not just someone who was greedy and took advantage of the bridesmaids. Amy, the maid of honor, did call the church to let them know, so hopefully it won’t happen again. Marie and I did lose some gift certificates that we had purchased for our readers and possibly a card, but when you get robbed, you can never be sure of everything you lost.

After the ceremony we headed to the reception and had a wonderful dinner and a great time dancing as well. Marie and I had a tremendous time and it was so thrilling to be surrounded by loving friends and family members. I made a slide show presentation of photographs and used Eric’s laptop to have that running on our gift table. My dad made the cake stand which turned out perfectly. Marie and I crashed around midnight or so, after much dancing and laughing.

Sunday we woke up and got checked out of the hotel. Packed up the car and headed to my mother-in-law’s house for the gift opening. We were spoiled with lots of gifts and had a lot to open. We had a lot of good food too; chocolate covered Rice Krispie treats were in full effect. Around 3pm we left for Chicago for the honeymoon after helping my parent’s pack up the minivan with our loot.

All in all, it was a fantastic wedding and we heard lots of “this is the best wedding we’ve been to” remarks. I guess we know how to throw a party. Everyone kept asking me ‘how it felt’ and I must say it didn’t feel all that different. I guess I’d be scared if it did. I had committed myself to Marie a long time ago, the ceremony was more of a formality. It feels weird to wear a ring so I’m still getting used to that, but the commitment is more than just a week and half old ;)

Next up, the honeymoon tales…
twicketface: (Default)
Wedding bells are ringing louder and I’m getting nervous/very excited. 5 years ago, I never thought I’d be getting married simply because I was so used to being alone. Now I’m looking forward to the challenges of marriage. I think it’s going to be a learning experience, as all great things in life are. Devoting my life to one person sounds pretty romantic and inspiring.

Marie is in Wausau right now with Liz, and I’ll be arriving there tomorrow evening. I’ve got a few things to tend to tonight, but nothing too major. I’m just excited I get to watch the Simpsons during dinner. Going two weeks without made me realize how much I still like that show, even in reruns.

Only thing in the next two weeks that I’m not looking forward to (other than coming home) is the drive to Chicago. It’s a five hour trip from Wausau to the airport, and that depends on traffic. Eek. I don’t mind driving, but I’m just not used to being in Chicago and have this image of getting lost or something. Note to self – be less of a weenie.

I’m ready for the heat to break too. Tired of being sticky. Ick. I don’t like my dependence on air conditioning but it’s tough when it’s so hot outside. St. Lucia forecast is mid 80s and thunderstorms the ENTIRE time we’re supposed to be there. Yeah, we’ll see about that.

I’m too frazzled to post anything intelligent, so I’ll just end it now. Probably a brief posting tomorrow, but if not, I’ll see you mid August when I return. I promise to fill you in on most of my excellent adventures.
twicketface: (Default)
Well, I got to get up early this morning to go to work. It was ok, I guess. I stayed up late last night because Liz was coming in from Chicago. I thought after 4 hours in the car, she might want someone to talk to. She had caffeine, so she was a little on the peppy side. We had a nice chat, but I didn’t end up hitting the hay until about midnight. 6 am came rather early.

Had about 20 or 30 photo Ids to do this morning at work, so it wasn’t too bad. Got home by 10 or so. Only embarrassing part was when 2 15-year-old girls came to have their IDs taken, I overheard one comment to the other as they were leaving that I had a boner. Now, if I actually had a boner, I would have been embarrassed, but the fact that I was bonerless makes me a little irritated. As much as I would have liked to follow them out of the and explain that I did not have a boner, the repercussions made this not a good option. Sigh.

I got back and our friend Carrie A. was also in town from Kansas City for a wedding of one of her former roommates. So, we went out to eat and visited for a bit. It was really nice.

Marie and I hit the shopping circuit after Liz and Carrie went their ways. Dropped off Marie’s engagement and wedding ring to be soldered together for the wedding. We also went in search of a camera, but came up empty handed. Best Buy didn’t have a big selection and everything they had seemed really small and had tiny viewfinders. I felt even more like a giant. So we’ll try a camera place in Oshkosh and see what they have to offer.

If I get one more pop-up window for that stupid X-10 web cam, I’m going to fucking puke. Yeah, not just puke. Fucking puke.

So when we got back into town from shopping, I took a nap and Marie did some exercising. I woke up groggy as all hell and disoriented. I hate taking naps, but I was really tired. I usually can function well without a lot of sleep, but not today.

Random thoughts of the night (a first for me!):
How did Vanna White become Vanna White? I can’t figure it out.

Marie bought Jenga this weekend. Jenga anyone?

I would love to give away a million dollars to a worthwhile cause. Anybody looking to spare some cash?

I’m not clipping my toenails for a few weeks and then going to get a pedicure. But I’ll wash me feet extra good.
twicketface: (Default)
Well, had quite a nice weekend to say the least. The sun came out and I felt pretty productive. Friday night, Marie had training for babysitting classes, so I was ‘home alone’. I watched part of the NBA playoffs and updated some rants and raves for my website. No big whoop.

Saturday was a trip to Kenosha for our 2nd wedding shower. Rode down with my parents, about a 2 hour drive. Got there around 12:30 or so and had a great time. Nice meal, lots of presents and little time to talk with Marie’s dad’s side of the family. Got back to Oshkosh around 6:30 or so and felt like a swim, so Marie and I took a dip in the pool. It was nice because no one else was in it and it was very refreshing.

Sunday took us to the grocery store and to Target for some shopping items. Got back and had some lunch, then had a nice visit with Tim and Andrea, who happened to be passing on thru. Got the 2nd part of our shower gift from them, a cool game called King’s Cribbage. Basically, it’s cribbage but played on a Scrabble board. You get tiles with card denominations on them and make the best cribbage hand. Looks to be pretty awesome, so we’ll be breaking that out soon.

After they left, I headed over to Terry and Eric’s for some video games (my team made it into the NFL playoffs again, rock on!) Beat the Cardinals 31-7 and will face off against Terry on Tuesday night. Was planning on playing some tennis, but it was pouring out this afternoon. So came back home and had some supper, and then met Terry and Eric at the tennis courts on campus around 6, after the sun had come out. Played around for a good hour and a half, felt pretty good to be back on the courts and running around. Came home sweaty and tired, hopped in the shower and got to working on updating the website. I do must of the uploading of files from work, since it’s much faster. Adds to turn-around time, but of the 7 people that visit my website, I figure they can handle it.

More Gloom

Jun. 5th, 2001 04:43 pm
twicketface: (Default)
For crying out loud, is some sunshine too much to ask? I can't think that things would get any grayer, but then I look outside and am prove wrong. How am I supposed to work on my tan in weather like this?

Anyway, life is pretty good with me for no particular reason. Work is going well and keeping me busy. Lots of interviews to set up and paper to be shuffled. But it's a good gig.

Meeting with the photographer tonight to discuss the details of the wedding and get some questions answered. He's a really cool guy, albeit a little on the peculiar side. Aren't we all? Also, got a call from Terry and he's in the mood for some cribbage. So I'll be pegging his unruly ass for a few victories tonight. Haven't played in a while, so it'll be fun. Would rather be on the tennis courts, but Ma Nature is a hateful one.

I'm working on a few new rants for my website - sex and originality. How great of a combo is that? Hope to have up new pictures of Hot 'N Now too, but hey, I need to work on getting them scanned in and looking snazzy. Anyway, hope to have an update completed by the weekend.

I guess that's about all for me, it's almost time for me to hit the road.

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