Away & Back

I had left for a few days to go visit Virginia Beach. We stayed in one of the hotels on the beach,which is nice as we often sat on the balcony & watched the people go by. :D Anyways, it started on Tuesday at the butt crack of dawn, where we drove to the airport to catch a morning flight to Baltimore. Once there we had time to grab some breakfast from McDonald's in the food court, before getting on another plane to go to Norfolk. When we got there, there was some grief with the rental car, but Dad seemed to have sorted it out. (*LAUGHS*) We check in, dump our luggage & head to Target for snacks for the room. Then we came back & basically crashed & burned until dinner. Dinner was nice, we went to Mahi's which is just a couple of blocks away. I got a flounder sandwich & I swear they battered & fried the whole fish. XD I have never seen a sandwich bun look sooo small before. XD But it was YUMMY! :D Another rest so the food could go down, before wandering across the street for some Ben & Jerry's. :D Before crashing & burning, I went out & picked up a bunch of the freebie books they have every other block with local coupons. XD Then it was shower, watch an hour of TV before getting an early night.

The next day we went to the Back Bay wildlife refuge & walked around there, looking for tree frogs, which we didn't find at all. XD We did find some butterflies, a TON of dragonflies, a bunny (YAY!), an Eastern Rat snake & a cottonmouth that I nearly stepped on. XD Luckily, I had stopped short of it, I hadn't seen it, but Dad did & I backed up & away from it. XD Not sure if I was close enough to get tagged, but if I had kept going, I wouldn't be here telling you about it. XD The snake was not happy, said "F*** this sh*t!" and slithered off into the bushes. Thankfully the rat snake was cool & turned around & disappeared from whence it came. XD We really didn't see or hear any birds, which was odd, but not odd as the remnants of Ida was heading our way. We did see some military planes, so when we left, we headed over to Oceana. Outside & across the street from the base, next to the dump, was a lil park, where people park & watch the planes. Just over the barrier is the neighborhood. We saw a lot, taking off & landing. When they came in for a landing, overhead, you could see them getting a bit buffeted by the wind (a sign of things to come). Then we left when no planes came by in a half hour & went back to the hotel. We hung out a bit & went for a walk on the boardwalk. You could see why there was hardly anyone on the beach as the wind was picking up & sandblasting us. XD Then we went to this fish place on the docks, where I got a lobster roll. It was just a ton of lobster meat on a toasted hot dog bun. It was messy to eat as stuff would fall off, so I just ate stuff out of the bun & dipped it in the butter they gave me. XD So it was like eating a lobster tail without all the mess. :D Very Yummy! :D So we walked down to the Dairy Queen & watched a local band playing. There's a small park with a bandshell across from it. The DQ is basically just a walk up window with a parking lot & a bathroom. XD So when the first set ended, we left. We also got Blizzards, which I never had before, & ate them while watching the band. Also the sky got weird looking, & I was like it's going to rain, so we started back to our hotel, which was several blocks away. By the time we got out of the DQ's parking lot, it was starting to rain. No biggie, right? Just a few gentle drops, right? NOPE! By the time we got to the end of the block it was monsoon season! Since there wasn't any nearby shelter, by the time we did make it to this hotel with an overhang out front (guests pull in under it to check in), we were DRENCHED. XD We waited for it to mostly stop, before heading back to our hotel, which was still several blocks away, & a nice warm shower & some TV.

Day three, which was crappy looking from Ida's passing through, so we decided to go to the air museum to see some planes from both world wars. They also had some shells, & some military vehicles. It was pretty cool. but Dad was annoyed as he knew there was more to it, but that was closed off due to COVID (most likely), & the fact that a ton of planes were being stored there, with no room to safe walk around. But they had dinosaurs! So I was happy! :D Someone had made some different kinds of dinos out of scrap metal & plopped them down near the museum's entrance for the kiddos to see & play around. They were set up so you really couldn't get to them unless you pushed through some bushes, although a few were out in the open. I thought they were cool, yet kinda tacky, but still had enough cool in them, since they were art. The rest of day was nice, & we did a bad & threw fries at the sea gulls, & watched the gulls steal them. I had gotten some DQ chicken tenders for lunch. It came with fries & Texas toast. :D

That night, had Italian, walked back down to the DQ to watch another local band, left after the first set, got some frozen custard (soft serve ice cream) & headed back. We had also explored some of the shops, while out for a walk, & walked the pier as far as you could go before they decided to charge people to go to thee end. XD

Last day, before going home, we took a harbor tour of the local navy base. Saw a ton of battle ships, both new & older models, some dolphins & had a nice relaxing time on board. :D Then we went to the Nauticus, which is a naval museum, & got tickets to tour the Wisconsin, which is a WWII battleship. they give guided tours, but you can also explore on your own, which we did. Then a quick look inside the museum, before heading back to the airport. Trying to turn in the car was a hassle & a half. Dad was POed big time that it was over a $100 more than he had contracted for, but it was straightened out & he wound up paying a bit less than he was supposed to pay, which made him happy. Basically the same two flights in reverse & totally uneventful. We ate dinner at McDonald's at Baltimore airport's food court, got home, I managed to do my trip laundry, before heading off to bed.

Also work starts up again on Thursday. I'm also much to my sadness, working in a middle school, instead of an elementary. While I'll miss the lil ones, I won't miss the woman in charge as she can be a lil bitchy. XD I'm also in charge, & while I have a ton of kids & a lot of them have no idea how to behave, they don't all come the same day & hopefully they will behave, or I'll speak to my boss about suspending them. The most disruptive ones can get suspended if need be. I'm not looking forward to it as I knwo one of them came be a real HANDFUL. I get that parents need to work, but they need to parent their kids so their kids aren't a bunch of A$$HOLES.It's not my job or the school's to discipline your kids.

Home at Last! :D

I just got home from a quick trip up to Maine. The weird part is, we took the ferry home from Connecticut to Long Island & I'm a pretty good "sailor" and as I sit here & type I can feel the rolling of the ferry. XD Not that I feel sick or anything, just kinda rocking side to side. XD Anyways, enough of that, I want to tell you about my trip! :D

So we get up early on Tuesday, packed the car & headed out to the end of the Island for the ferry. We it to Connecticut and drove all the way up to Machias Maine. We said at a nice hotel in town & a river ran behind it, so it was fun, sitting there watching a pair of cormorants fish in the afternoon of the next day. A bald eagle flew overhead, which was awesome! :D But even more awesome, was Dad & I went on a puffin tour, while Mom stayed behind. (My sister had to stay home with my birds as she was out of time off at work.) So Dad & I got up early, I went & got me a hot tea & hot coffee for my parents from the Dunkin Donuts which was like a 5 minute (10 tops) walk down the road. (We had gotten pizza from the place next door & I swear it was school pizza. Watching them make it just confirmed it. But we were hungry so we ate the pizza, showered, watched a bit of Olympics & went to bed.) So we drove into another small town in Maine, I think it was called Cutler, parked & waited for the boat to arrive. It looked like a lobster boat. XD We boarded & headed out onto the high seas! We made our way to a small island, I think it's called Seal Island in the Bay of Fundy. It's a protected area & this tour is the only one that lets you onto the island. There's a research station as well as a lighthouse & of course the reason we went there: puffins! :D There's also some gulls there, but they're kinda like pigeons in that they're everywhere. XD So we got to spend about an hour & a half there in a tiny blind taking pix. I manged to get one with my phone. Mostly, I just watched them fly by when I wasn't being a photography assistant. :D We also saw them out on the ocean, along with a shearwater (a type of seabird), some Wilson's stormy petrels (tiny seabirds), some seals, and a dolphin. :D It was FUN & I got sunburned on my face as that was the only thing exposed. We were told to dress warmly (jackets, hats & long pants), so I wasn't cold. :D we were going to go back the next day (as we had paid to do so), but it decided to RAIN & that trip was cancelled. And for dinner, we ate a nice restaurant in the hotel parking lot, & got ice cream for dessert at an ice cream stand. :D

So instead of staying in the tiny town of Machias, we left a day early & drove down to the Bar Harbor area. We stayed outside of the town as everything was BOOKED. o.0 So we checked out the parking situation & walked around a bit as the rain had let up some. We also got ice cream & I got a stuffed puffin to remember the trip by. We went back to our room & ate what Dad referred to as "cat food." (Bumblebee tuna snacks) The next day, we had a late lunch at the Traveling Lobster. (We also ate lobster the day before. XD) Then we went into town as we had a sunset tour of the harbor, which was nice. We learned a bit about the area. Oh, and we also had visited Acadia National Park, but the southern route that day & the rainy one, since you just drive & get out & look at various spots. And we also did a lil hike to water, which was tough in that it was muddy from all the rain, but we did it. :D While on the harbor tour, we saw a sunfish! It's like a huge circle with strange fins on one end. It doesn't really have a tail. XD It was cool! :D And then we got up early today, and drove home. XD And like I said, we took the ferry back to Long Island. XD

Surpriser Winner XD

I while ago I had entered Tsukisagi's birthday giveaway over at her sprite/graphic journal. Totally UNEXPECTEDLY, I won. XD You had to pick a random number from 1 to 27 & I picked lucky 13 & actually won! o.0

Here's my winning banner:


Isn't it adorable? :D And if you like things like that here's a link to her graphic/sprite journal:

She's very sweet & talented! :D

Poor Little Bernd, a Winter Tale of Woe (Winterfest in July 1-4)

Title: Poor Little Bernd, a Winter Tale of Woe
Author: kira
Characters: Bernd, Maria, Amber, Greta, Vati(Wolfgang)
Word count: 2111
Rating: PG 13 for brief nudity
Summary: A snow drift, a snow beast, and getting sick, what more can go wrong for Bernd?
Author’s note: Special thanks to my beta Kat for pinking this. Please note that Greta, Amber, and Maria belong to her. Also of note, this time around I asked Kat to pick four random prompts & suggest a character or two, which helped me corral a bunch of plot bunnies.
Author’s note 2: This was written for allbingo’s Winterfest in July, using all four prompts and making a single fic out of them.

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Winterfest in July

Thanks to a busy schedule, I nearly missed the Winterfest in July bingo at allbingo!! XD Thanks to a chat with Kat, who very NICELY gave me a couple of prompts & plot bunnies, I was able to narrow it down to 4, which sadly is about all I'll have time for. T.T

Anyways, here's my card:

Walking in a Winter Wonderland Snow Shark: Ancient Snow Beast
A Marshmallow World Krampusnacht

When I'm done, I'll have a short story in 4 parts... I hope. XD