If Ever I Wanted To....|
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Below are the 20 most recent journal entries recorded in
A. MacBadger's LiveJournal:
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|Monday, August 7th, 2006|
So far, between July 3 and the present I've vistited:
New York City/New Jersey
Now I leave for:
Birthday Weekend (Orlando)
Later in September:
Did I miss any major city?! I'm hitting 4 of the top 8...and also made a stop in Detroit in June! Current Mood: tired
|Monday, February 13th, 2006|
|Monday, January 16th, 2006|
|More Marathon Bragging Rights...
SEMINOLE81. Kurt Jennings, Sanford, 3:04:45;
185. Alejandro Pinedo, Altamonte Spgs, 3:16:48; 248. Angela Sechrest, Sanford, 3:22:00; 254. G. Allen Schleicher, Altamonte Sprin, 3:22:25; 292. Barbara Piromalli, Altamonte Spgs, 3:25:12; 364. Richard Mason, Oviedo, 3:29:14; 415. Tom Weis, Winter Springs, 3:30:51; 461. Tim Martin, Lake Mary, 3:32:45; 545. Stewart Edwards, Sanford, 3:36:20; 555. Misty Adams, Sanford, 3:36:41; 571. Brooks Collins, Longwood, 3:37:33; 605. John Hope, Oveido, 3:39:03; 647. Michael Striby, Oviedo, 3:40:03; 744. Patrick Schultz, Sanford, 3:42:58; 786. Michael Alexandrowicz, Longwood, 3:44:09; 788. Andrew Devine, Lake Mary, 3:44:11; 849. Mario Relvini, Oviedo, 3:46:05; 866. William Litwin, Sanford, 3:46:29; 972. Jim Field, Chuluota, 3:49:46; 1041. Robert Truckenmiller, Heathrow, 3:51:59; 1065. Kevin Heern, Longwood, 3:52:35; 1233. Tim Fenu, Oviedo, 3:56:35; 1312. Edgardo Cardetti, Longwood, 3:58:01; 1398. Gregory Sackett, Winter Springs, 3:59:30; 1497. Kevin Noonan, Altamonte Spgs, 4:01:25; 1501. Jon Fetter, Casselberry, 4:01:26; 1618. Charles Ayers, Lake Mary, 4:03:39; 1691. Jonathan Supraner, Lake Mary, 4:04:49; 1728. Mark Lammert, Winter Springs, 4:05:47; 1740. Elizabeth Hays, Longwood, 4:05:56; 1761. Tiffany Kaufman, Sanford, 4:06:20; 1827. Paul Kraus, Lake Mary, 4:07:54; 1975. Jeremy Shinall, Lake Mary, 4:11:00; 2050. Jorge De La Osa, Longwood, 4:12:34; 2103. Brian Hulek, Fern Park, 4:13:51; 2106. Brian Certo, Longwood, 4:13:54; 2209. Amanda Jolman, Casselberry, 4:15:52; 2330. Steve Diamond, Lake Mary, 4:18:29; 2364. Cari Miszewski, Longwood, 4:19:04; 2468. Doug Elkin, Longwood, 4:21:09; 2547. Silvia Stopka, Sanford, 4:22:20; 2556. Trung Lively, Altamonte Spgs, 4:22:29; 2570. Rocco Relvini, Sanford, 4:22:38; 2655. Karen Thurmond, Longwood, 4:23:51; 2656. Abre Chase, Lake Mary, 4:23:52; 2669. Kristina Williams, Casselberry, 4:24:02; 2670. David Davis, Sanford, 4:24:03; 2908. John Blahnik, Oviedo, 4:28:07; 3015. John Felix, Oviedo, 4:30:01; 3106. Clint Carbonneau, Winter Spring, 4:31:45; 3246. Steve Povilaitis, Sanford, 4:34:24; 3297. Andrew Smith, Longwood, 4:35:15; 3329. Michele Povilaitis, Sanford, 4:35:49; 3345. Robert Sinninger, Sanford, 4:36:11; 3398. April Zuiderveen, Casselberry, 4:37:10; 3414. Gualtiero Di Loreto, Lake Mary, 4:37:27; 3433. John Logiudice, Lake Mary, 4:37:43; 3492. John Canning, Lake Mary, 4:38:41; 3538. Jon Meeks, Sanford, 4:39:24; 3656. Frank Ferrell, Altamonte Spgs, 4:41:39; 3719. Larry Nuosce, Longwood, 4:42:41; 3764. Doug Vaughn, Lake Mary, 4:43:15; 3803. Jennifer Darbelnet, Heathrow, 4:43:44; 3811. David Giard, Winter Springs, 4:43:51; 3871. Joseph Fetchick, Lake Mary, 4:45:03; 3948. Edna Arroyo, Winter Springs, 4:46:10; 4050. Alex Sacharoff, Oviedo, 4:47:52; 4068. Ann Fetter, Casselberry, 4:48:20; 4110. Amy Zolessi, Oviedo, 4:49:10; 4200. Nancy Filiault, Oviedo, 4:50:42; 4298. Philip Perry, Winter Springs, 4:52:22; 4457. Jason Dewey, Orlando, 4:54:17; 4537. Alex Cvercko, Longwood, 4:55:54; 4540. Ryan Allred, Lake Mary, 4:55:57; 4541. Hal Allred, Lake Mary, 4:55:57; 4557. Deanna Tran, Longwood, 4:56:05; 4565. Phebe Cooper, Sanford, 4:56:14; 4590. Ken Bacchus, Oviedo, 4:56:31; 4614. Ronald Hitzel, Oviedo, 4:56:54; 4698. Christine Van Blokland, Lake Mary, 4:58:18; 4699. Donald Reed, Sanford, 4:58:18; 4843. Paul Deponte, Winter Springs, 5:00:30; 4963. Chris Cooper, Sanford, 5:02:25; 5021. Jeri Weigandt, Casselberry, 5:03:18; 5032. Daryl Smith, Oviedo, 5:03:28; 5040. Clint Kappel, Casselberry, 5:03:36; 5084. Juliana Canales, Casselberry, 5:04:17; 5231. Enrique Mora, Winter Springs, 5:06:32; 5263. Christopher Greene, Oviedo, 5:07:12; 5534. John Brandt, Casselberry, 5:12:13; 5551. Norman Fulton, Chuluota, 5:12:33; 5563. Beverly Mansker, Lakemary, 5:12:48; 5583. Michael Plitt, Oviedo, 5:13:27; 5674. Howard Mcneal, Lake Mary, 5:15:19; 5729. Alan Mecca, Longwood, 5:16:21; 5754. Tencha Rodriguez, Oviedo, 5:17:00; 5755. Vanessa Smith, Longwood, 5:17:01; 5799. Eric Chrisman, Oviedo, 5:17:51; 5866. Jason Loomis, Fern Park, 5:19:04; 5899. Jennifer Fritch, Casselberry, 5:19:39; 5929. Amy Goff, Sanford, 5:20:19; 5932. Sarah Close, Sanford, 5:20:22; 6044. Lauren Pattelena, Altamonte Spgs, 5:22:50; 6053. Andrew Little, Sanford, 5:23:03; 6054. Cindi Peterson, Lake Mary , 5:23:04; 6081. Michael Kendig, Lake Mary, 5:23:35; 6082. Lynne Kendig, Lake Mary, 5:23:35; 6084. Mary Dehlinger, Sanford, 5:23:36; 6165. Pedro Davila, Longwood, 5:24:58; 6206. Nicholas Gillen, Oviedo, 5:25:25; 6247. Paul Newman, Lake Mary, 5:26:05; 6248. Mark Hendelson, Lake Mary, 5:26:05; 6283. Kristie Ihde, Chuluota, 5:26:44; 6366. James Miller, Longwood, 5:28:12; 6399. Timothy Pursley, Oviedo, 5:28:41; 6407. Christina Wonder, Oviedo, 5:28:45; 6411. Denise Turner, Winter Springs, 5:28:47; 6412. Maureen Coats, Winter Springs, 5:28:47; 6431. Christine Vogt, Altamonte Sprin, 5:29:15; 6519. Winston Saunders, Longwood, 5:30:42; 6576. Carrie Dent, Casselberry, 5:31:52; 6580. Lisa Dietrick-Chiang, Longwood, 5:31:55; 6623. Daniel Johannes, Oviedo, 5:32:54; 6713. David Ellis, Sanford, 5:34:39; 6746. Merrisa Mccormick, Winter Springs, 5:35:17; 6758. Mindy Roth, Winter Springs, 5:35:29; 6783. Kathryn Miller, Oviedo, 5:36:01; 6784. Sheron Rowe, Altamonte Spgs, 5:36:02; 6786. Elizabeth Barton, Casselberry, 5:36:04; 6867. Kathleen Steil, Longwood, 5:37:30; 7044. Nancy Thompson, Winter Springs, 5:41:54; 7076. Erin Mahar, Lake Mary, 5:42:50; 7077. Corey Bobb, Longwood, 5:42:50; 7250. Carrie Laabs, Lake Mary, 5:46:31; 7298. Sol Walton, Longwood, 5:47:23; 7405. Elizabeth Brandt, Casselberry, 5:49:44; 7436. Thomas Farmer, Longwood, 5:50:14; 7437. Alan Adams, Altamonte Spgs, 5:50:14; 7528. Jenny Wakefield, Altamonte Sprin, 5:52:23; 7695. Lisa Hudson, Heathrow, 5:56:06; 7720. Matthew Bell, Sanford, 5:56:28; 7879. William Purkey, Oviedo, 6:00:13; 7902. Joe Driskell, Sanford, 6:00:47; 8027. Matt Miller, Longwood, 6:02:58; 8123. Patricia Winters, Winter Springs, 6:05:45; 8195. Kelley Emery, Sanford, 6:07:37; 8282. Melissa Pardo, Casselberry, 6:10:28; 8344. Alicia Labombard, Oviedo, 6:12:07; 8363. Patricia Rhame, Chuluota, 6:12:28; 8392. Robert Schroth, Longwood, 6:13:12; 8394. George Braceland, Sanford, 6:13:16; 8436. Sarene Wallick, Oviedo, 6:14:38; 8568. Robyn Goldstein, Lake Mary, 6:18:37; 8585. Janae Corrado, Oviedo, 6:19:20; 8592. Elizabeth Squyres, Sanford, 6:19:42; 8645. Pamela Broome, Oviedo, 6:21:09; 8672. Kay Theisen, Lake Mary, 6:21:56; 8673. Kevin Theisen, Lake Mary, 6:21:56; 8715. Joel Dazo, Winter Springs, 6:23:07; 8749. Bob Warta, Geneva, 6:24:29; 8758. Jay Price, Oviedo, 6:24:45; 8781. John Irace, Sanford, 6:25:30; 8917. Molly Schulte, Altamonte Sprin, 6:30:23; 8924. Heather Cannon, Longwood, 6:30:31; 8925. Thomas Cannon, Longwood, 6:30:31; 8942. Lea Driskell, Sanford, 6:30:49; 9087. Alex Darnell, Sanford, 6:34:47; 9095. Donald Pursley, Oviedo, 6:35:00; 9112. Helen Kwiat, Casselberry, 6:35:25; 9134. Karen Herzog, Altamonte Sprin, 6:35:59; 9135. Mary Brockman, Longwood, 6:36:00; 9157. Richard Smith, Altamonte Spgs, 6:36:38; 9177. Paul Bruno, Longwood, 6:37:16; 9410. Mindy Barnes, Sanford, 6:45:29; 9498. Bob Brubaker, Chuluota, 6:48:48; 9499. Jan Brubaker, Chuluota, 6:48:48; 9559. Trudy Scott, Altamonte Spgs, 6:50:54; 9561. Lena Wasserman, Altamonte Spgs, 6:51:01; 9589. Mitch Fortier, Chuluota, 6:52:21; 9674. Bethann Sturdivant, Lake Mary, 6:55:01; 9709. Terry Quinn, Longwood, 6:55:47; 9763. Jeff Yaptengco, Sanford, 6:57:24; 9791. Robert Gibbs, Longwood, 6:58:38; 9842. David Santiago, Chuluota, 7:00:00; 9866. Rosie Szlachetka, Longwood, 7:00:42; 9943. Katherine Thompson, Winter Springs, 7:03:20; 9950. Lydia Godwin, Sanford, 7:03:24; 9985. David Zissman, Oviedo, 7:04:38; 9997. Shamus Holt, Longwood, 7:04:57; 10022. Antonio Henriques, Longwood, 7:05:58;
How they finished: Florida marathon participants
2006 Walt Disney World Marathon
1. Mackey Tyndall, Panama City, 2:11:07; 3. Renzo Martinez, Boca Raton, 2:24:11; 4. Matthew Dobson, Jay, 2:33:39; 4. Scott Rimmer, Port Orange, 2:34:19; 7. Shannon Schaffer, Oakland, 2:52:14; 9. John Reback, N Palm Beach, 2:42:42; 10. Michael Mollod, Sarasota, 2:42:54; 15. Andrew Greenidge, Coconut Creek, 2:46:28; 29. Paul Marmaro, Delray Beach, 2:51:49; 30. Scott Colton, Riviera Beach, 2:52:19; 43. Christopher Behrens, Ft. Walton Beac, 2:56:24; 49. Kent Kurfman, Sarasota, 2:58:38; 50. Charles Hammon, Boynton Beach, 2:58:40; 56. Christopher Calkins, St Augustine, 2:59:54; 59. Timothy Lyster, Naples, 3:00:23; 62. Maryann Protz, St Petersburg, 3:00:40; 63. Joyuanki Victore, Pensacola, 3:01:35; 65. Kevin Keating, Daytona Beach, 3:02:30; 67. Wayne Diny, Tampa, 3:03:21; 68. Jonathan Mccomb, Pensacola, 3:03:27; 70. Jon Docs, Tampa, 3:03:41; 74. Deborah Tillman, Ormond Beach, 3:04:06; 75. Frederick Dorsey, Tampa, 3:04:09; 79. Lynn Leonard, Ocala, 3:04:23; 81. Kurt Jennings, Sanford, 3:04:45;
83. Charles Sullivan, Vero Beach, 3:05:20; 89. Laura Drake, St Petersburg, 3:07:03; 90. Paul Newstead, Palm Beach Gdns, 3:07:03; 91. Yuji Funakoshi, Orlando, 3:07:18; 92. Jeremy Davidson, Daytona Beach, 3:07:32; 93. Erick Amador, Miami, 3:07:35; 95. Matthew Walby, Port St Lucie, 3:07:46; 99. Matyas Buzgo, Gainesville, 3:08:55; 100. Ken Junkins, St Cloud, 3:09:02;
|Kurt's Long Awaited Marathon Post
It was a glorious morning, last Sunday...even waking up at 3:45 am didn't seem that bad...even the 38 degrees at race start, again, didn't seem that bad. It was going to be a good day!
Nah, make that a great day...I had big plans!
I walked over to the start line with a friend of mine that I used to run with at the YMCA, who had moved to Denver. He was looking to break 4 hours for the marathon, and due to his altitude training, I knew he could do it (and he did in 3:52!). He was on the other side of the road, so we had to split a little early, and I had about 45 minutes to relax, calm myself, stretch and get ready to run. I made 4 pit stops on the side of the road (no time to wait for port-o-lets!) before the gun went off, and positioned myself near the front of the corral for a good start. The fireworks shot off at the end of the countdown, and the race was on!
I had on my cotton gloves, a hat with sunglasses on the brim, a long sleeved t-shirt over a short sleeved t-shirt over a sleeveless running-t over a short sleeved running-t. Just enough to take off items as the day progressed! My first two miles were a little bit under race pace (7:15 mins/mile) but I chalked that up to adrenaline, and nerves, and just kept plodding around EPCOT. By the time I reached 5 miles I was running consistently under 7 minutes a mile, not feeling winded, tired, or anything but good....and the fact that there wasn't much of a headwind didn't hurt either!
The miles ticked off rather quickly, and I do mean quickly...as I blazed through 10 miles in 1 hour 10 minutes and 19 seconds. I also figured that this would be a good time to take of a layer, so my adoring public would be able to recognize me. Thanks also to the beauty of the 'runner notification system', my posse on Main Street knew I was coming in the next 3-4 minutes! And there they were, lined up on Main Street USA, signs in hand, shirts spelling out 'G-O K-U R-T' (and I'm proud that they made it in the right order too!) cheering like crazy for me. I made my lap around the park, through the castle, and out the back entrance and into the fog and cones.
I remarked to one runner as I passed by that if we got bored we could count the cones that lined the centerline of the road...there must have been a couple thousand between the back of MK and the Wedding Pavilion. That, and the fog got kind of thick back there too...still didn't need the sunglasses until much later, even though at times I could see a beautiful sunrise. Passing by Shades of Green (Military owned resort) there was a contingent of Army troops cheering, and I gave as many high-fives and thank-you's as I could. Passing through the half-way point at 1:31:51 meant that I had ran one of my 5 fastest half-marathon times IN THE FIRST HALF OF A MARATHON. Either I was going to qualify for Boston, or have the biggest flame-out in sports history.
I didn't have much time to ponder that, because at the next water stop, was one of my co-workers, and right behind her was another one of my YMCA running partners who were more than surprised to see me this far up in the pack! Both of them had to take an extra second to realize that it was me going by! :) The long stretch to Animal Kingdom tests how strong you are mentally for the marathon. I've always said that running is 10% physical and 90% mental. So, I took this 3 mile stretch to reflect back on the people in my life that made a difference, and who I was running this race for. There was myself, of course, who wanted to prove to myself that I could reach a goal that 4 years ago seemed improbable if not impossible. My family, for supporting me and my running habit through vacations and visits. Christy, who was battling breast cancer and winning and who couldn't make it for the first time in 7 years to watch me finish. Sue, who helped me out so many times with personal issues and problems. Amy, the best girlfriend that anybody could ever want, with undying support! Rachel, Jamie and Eileen who got up with Amy to come out and chase me around the world, just because they wanted to. As well as to anybody and everybody who ever supported me, or knows me, or cheered for me....I was doing it for you. Now, there was one special individual that I did leave out, because I knew I was going to need that one for later.....for the mean time, I concentrated on the guy with the hat and the red singlet on, and pushed forward.
Animal Kingdom has a bit of an odor to it...and that's not also because you run past the wastewater treatment plant...but there's animal poop all around! Not to mention some twisting turns, and the bright glare of the sun as you finally turn towards it from the shadows. My sunglasses were finally put to use, but not after wiping the frost/dew/condensation off of them time and time again. I hadn't slowed down from my half-marathon pace, in fact, I had actually SPED UP a couple of seconds...which is pretty unreal! In fact, I had out run Rob who had tried to get from MK to EPCOT (to get the car) to AK by a handful of seconds. My second fastest mile (15) was 6:36....sorry about that!
Heading down Osceola Parkway towards Wide World of Sports, there's not much to look at, besides trees...but there are lots of people that are bussed out there to cheer and clap, marching bands to play, cheerleaders to do routines, and a ton of people handing out water. This year, I didn't smell the grease of McDonald's, so I was spared that grief...thankfully! I hit mile 19 (the fastest mile at 6:34!!!) and had to do a double take. I knew I was getting slightly delirious at this point, and with only 7 miles to go, that I needed to focus even harder at this point to stay on track. I crossed the 20 mile mat at 2:19:38 (do the math, kids, that 10 miles was faster than the FIRST 10) and instantly knew that I was going to make it to Boston this time. Only 10K (6.2 miles) to go...steady as she goes, ace....steady....
Switching over to the eastbound lane of Osceola Parkway, where you do the (mentally) painful out and back portion, I used my 'secret weapon'. I focused on the people that were running the same direction as I was, and not the people that were just over a mile ahead of me (although, I did notice at this point, there weren't that many...) I thought about Rob, and how he was supposed to run this race this year with me, but due to injury was physically unable to perform. I knew that it killed him to have to sit this one out (it's very hard for a runner to be at a race and not participate!) and that I was bound and determined to make his coming down worthwhile. So I pressed on through 21, 22 and 23, passing Rob who had been able to make it to a viewing point near MGM-Studios. I was pretty much out of it at this point, concentrating on the guy ahead of me, and would have missed him if he didn't shout out my name.
Inside the park, Sarge (Green Army Man from Toy Story) was shouting out encouragement to the runners as we passed by, and for the first time all race long, I let out my "I'm going to Boston!" scream. Which Sarge noted that he was 'very proud for that'...he may not have known the complete significance for running in the 'World Series of Marathoning', but I sure as hell did. Up the streets of America, and down Hollywood Boulevard I ran....finally taking of my top t-shirt, displaying my runner's number, and my name. And that had to be the saving move of the entire race.
Mile 23 was done in 6:47, Mile 24 was done in 7:23, so I had hit 'The Wall' just a lot later than I thought I would! (I had thought around 21) The people that lined the course behind the Boardwalk shouted out 'Go Kurt!' and 'You can do it, Kurt'....which gave me the personal incentive to get my butt back inside EPCOT by 9 am (3 hours of racing). I also realized again, that the hills (okay, short little 30-40' bridges) are in the last 2 miles of the race, and when your quads and calves are screaming at you to stop, you need all the encouragement you can get! Mile 25 came at France..and almost bittersweet...that there wasn't that much further to go (thank god!) but I was really enjoying the moment of running. It could be the endorphins, or the Tylenol-8 hour that I took talking, but I was having one hell of a good time! Ticking off the countries around World Showcase (and getting a whiff of Funnel Cakes) and past a group of flag waving Cast Members, I headed downhill towards Mile 26, the praise choir and finally the parking lot.
The roughly 2 minutes that it took me to get the last 0.2 miles to the finish line were quite a blur. I somewhat remember the announcer reading off my name and hometown to the crowd, and the deafing roar that there was. I think I gave Pluto a double high-five at the finish line, and I think I did a little jig when I did cross the line. I know I screamed again that I was going to Boston....and I looked at my watch in disbelief. 3:04:42!! My previous best was 3:16:07...and I dropped that much time in a year!?!? I guess all that training DOES pay off in the long run. I was reunited with my cheering section, and the proper hugs and kisses were distributed, and many photos were taken. I was slightly tired, so I hobbled back to the car and well...the rest of that stuff is pretty boring.
Again, thank you to all for thinking, hoping, praying, cheering or whatever you've done for me...it all paid off...and I can't wait to toe the line in Hopkinton, Mass in 2007* for the Boston Marathon!
(*The 2006 edition is the day after Easter, so there's no good/cheap way to really get there, and I want to make sure I have the proper time to enjoy the whole experience!)
|Wednesday, August 17th, 2005|
|5 + 5 = 10
5 miles last night (92 degrees) 37:57
5 miles tonight (94 degrees) 40:00
Not that tired either....must be the whole even-easy-pace thing.
Also, got my high school reunion (10yr) information ready to send back. That should a trippy-trip later this fall.
Talked to the parents last night. They're doing well.
Friend's surgery today went well.
I worked another long (9.5 hour day) in the 90+ degree weather....this after 10 hours the day before in similar conditions.
And I'm still functioning, and actually HAPPY to be doing it.
A positive attidute is amazing, and hopefully contagious! Current Mood: happy
|Monday, August 8th, 2005|
|Wednesday, August 3rd, 2005|
|The Trip Report (Part I)
Me: Playing the part of myself
Rob: My best friend from Cleveland
Sue: Good friend from Detroit
Christy: Good friend from Pensacola
Rick: Sue's husband
Patt: Christy's somewhat annoying friend from Shrevesport
Kristin: My older sister
The Donald: Her boyfriend
And a cast of extras....
Saturday July 16, 2005
I had everything laid out to ensure that I got to the airport in a quick manner on Saturday. I was using a new (cheaper!) parking service that was on the east (closer to the condo) of the airport, and I didn’t know how many shuttles they ran or much about them…except they would save me almost $20 from parking anywhere else. I made it there with plenty of time to spare, and got to the airport about 90 prior to departure. This was the first time I was checking a bag and using the kiosk check-in, so I had a smidge of drama early on. There wasn’t a line for the kiosk, so I walked up, re-printed my boarding passes, and requested one baggage tag for my suitcase. I went through the prompts, and at no time did it say where the tags were going to be printed (and there wasn’t a ticket agent to be found anywhere to answer any questions), so I did the next best thing: back out to curbside check-in! The nice Jamaican man explained to me that the tag was printing out behind the counter (would have been nice to know) and they would call you by last time to get it. Went back inside, found a ticket agent, found my tag and it was smooth sailing from there. Got on the plane, headed for Atlanta, and right during the ‘safety video’ the power went out…not exactly a good omen! The rest of the flight was pretty uneventful, but landing in Atlanta proved otherwise. Apparently, the night before, some bad weather occurred and planes were diverted to Atlanta, so most of the gates had planes at them. Our gate had a plane at it, and the gate we were going to head to, also, had a plane there, so the 3rd gate we tried did not have a plane, but it wasn’t set up to take in a 767. So, we had to wait for somebody to reconfigure the jetway ramp for us. Ain’t flying great? The plan was for Christy, Rob and Patt to meet inside the terminal when we all got in. As soon as I get off the plane I was met by Christy…only to find out that Rob would be going through Cincinnati, and Patt was going to be significantly delayed out of Shreveport and would also miss the flight. Undeterred, we set off town the hallway for some Blimpie lunch goodness and then found a seat to watch the ‘fashion parade’ go by. We weren’t disappointed. Our flight ended up being delayed by about 45 minutes, which gave Christy ample time to take another ‘happy-sleepy-drooly’ pill. The flight out to Vegas was again, thankfully, uneventful. The movie (Miss Congeniality 2: Armed and Fabulous) was worth passing up…but made better by watching it without the sound, and making our own dialogue. (Made even better when one of your party is on Dramamine!) We got our required snack pack and then our ‘big bag snack’. I watched ‘Young Frankenstein’ on Christy’s laptop while she zoned in and out of conciseness. We landed in Vegas, and immediately felt the heat. Walking up the jetway, we found Rob, who had been roaming the airport for over an hour, and the prerequisite slot machines littered through the terminal. (Hey, it’s Vegas….go figure!) We then made our way down to Rick and Sue’s gate, who were delayed a little themselves. The part of the airport that we were in was definitely the ‘new’ part...very clean and bright, and modern looking. We took the monorail/shuttle back to the main terminal, and without a whole lot of time, found our luggage. Our real introduction to the heat came as we walked out the door to the Hertz bus…hovering somewhere in the mid 110’s. (But it’s a dry heat!!! It’s still 110 fricking degrees!) On the way over to the lot the bus driver mentioned that we were coming to down in record heat, that it was nearly 100 degrees at 9pm, that Death Valley had a high of 135, and they were having the ‘fry an egg on the sidewalk contest’. Do these people know how to party or what?! We quickly found out, leaving the airport that Las Vegas is definitely a tourist destination, even in the oppressive heat. I hadn’t been back since I was going into the 6th grade…and I know there weren’t half as many people there as there were on the Strip alone. Traffic was bumper to bumper in both directions (on a Saturday) around 3 pm. We tried going up the Strip the Stratosphere, our home for the next couple days, and found the going slow. Even I-15 wasn’t any better…there was a wreck, or a really good buffet deal downtown that was drawing all the traffic that way. It took just about an hour to finally reach our hotel, which had in the shadows of the tower, some seedy looking business, some run down houses, and a library. (You expect me to believe that people actually read here!?) We parked the car in the check-in area, and nearly died walking the 100 yards to the door. There were a whopping 3 people there to check you in to a multi-thousand room hotel…this was going to take awhile. I was commandeered to watch the suitcases while the agonizing process of checking in took place. Then, we rolled our luggage through the casino (all of it) to our bank of elevators, and up to the 6th floor. The Stratosphere is not a luxury hotel, by any stretch of the imagination. I’m sure the suites are nice, and if you’re willing to drop some big coin, you can get a nice room. Our was not one of those rooms, but then again we’re cheap, not spending much more time in the room other than to sleep, so the view of the air conditioner units and walls were okay with us. We dumped our luggage off, and it was time to go back to the airport to pick up Christy’s friend Patt. This time, there wasn’t any traffic (other than the really short traffic signals at Sahara and Las Vegas Blvd.) to speak of, so we were able to zoom down, scoop Patt up and return to the hotel in a much quicker fashion. The first order of business was to find a place to eat, which was as always, the toughest decision to make! Order was restored, and we parked it at the modestly priced buffet downstairs and chowed down. After dinner, it was time to gamble...and not without starting our collection of Players Cards (make neat souvenirs with your name on them, so you feel special...or just another piece of plastic if you’re having a bad day.) The group split up to play slots and video poker, with nobody being a huge winner on the first night. I mean, playing penny and nickels, you’re not planning to hit it big. :) After about 20 minutes of discovering that Rob and I were pretty much going through the motions of playing video poker (and winning $.01 every other hand) we decided it was late enough, and time for bed.
Sunday July 17, 2005
Time zones can be fun. Waking up at 3:45 am, which the body thinks is 6:45 am just shows you how fun it can be. Nevertheless, the body can be controlled, and put back to sleep for another 4 hours. (whew!) This morning was the first of a couple work-out mornings, so Rob and I went to the 8th floor where the pool and workout center was. It was a nice pool, pretty large, good view of the mountains. The workout center was not air conditioned, had a couple large fans to move the air around, and the free weights were outside. Did I mention it was already 93 degrees at 8 am? It’s a dry heat my non-existent ass! It’s hot no matter what!! But we managed our respective workouts, and even took an impromptu lap around the casino (about .75 of a mile). Breakfast ended up being at the Denny’s within walking distance of the resort with Patt and Christy. My sister and (the) Donald were due in later this afternoon, so we decided to check out some of the other strip Casinos. So, through the gauntlet of elevators we went.
(Okay, rant about the elevators. They were small...could fit maybe 7 adults in there, and not have much room. There were 6 that served a 24 floor wing...and if you were going down, well, they were always full! And they moved sooooo slooooow. Then there were the ones in the parking garage. Made the Tower of Terror look like child’s play. These things scraped the walls, bounced, shook, and eventually got you where you wanted to go...if you hadn’t passed out from fear by then. You’d think they’d do something with the old ‘Vegas World’ elevators...but I guess not until somebody gets hurt.)
We drove south on the strip all the way down towards Mandalay Bay/Luxor/ Excalibur, which is where we ended up parking. Into the Luxor, we went...and wow...talk about themeing and cheese factor!! I thought our hotel had some, but alas, we were on the short end of the stick. If you had a large wad of money, and needed to blow it on movies and interactive shlock, this was the place! Or, if you needed anything Sphinx related...this was your place. We walked around the place, getting a players card, and just looking and admiring the gaudiness. After maybe 45 minutes, we ended up walking through the moving sidewalks to the Excalibur where later that night the girls would visit ‘Thunder Down Under’. About this time, I started feeling woozy, a little dizzy and quite unresponsive...and it was past lunch time...and I hadn’t even noticed! It wasn’t before Christy made a quick win of $90 on a penny slot that my condition worsened, and I was rushed stat to Quizno’s for some nourishment and fluids. (Okay, caffeine!) We played with the beads (freaked the lady working there out) and made a quick exit to the van. A quick trip through the Bellagio was in store where we found a great parking spot, and got our van searched: for what!? Took some pictures of the amazing gardens, and high-roller shlock...money was afoot, Watson! About this time, it was getting close for my Sister to arrive, so we headed back to our hotel, dropped Rick and the girls off, and went back to the airport. (We were getting good at this, now!) Just as we were pulling into the garage, the cell phone rang...so our timing was perfect...and turned out, it couldn’t have been better! The A/C in the airport had stopped working, so it was sweltering inside...not quite as bad as outside, but not comfy. Picked up our party, and drove them to their hotel (the Flamingo) and got to see what a ‘Real’ Vegas view looked like. A nice view of Caesar's Place and the Bellagio from the 20-something floor. We then headed back to the Stratosphere to meet with the rest of our group to plan the rest of the night. It was decided that the girls were going to take a taxi and eat on their own before feasting their eyes (and other body parts) on scrumptious Australian lads. Rob and I were invited to a $5 steak (and salad and potato) dinner at Ellis Island, a little dumpy casino off the strip, but worth more than some of the giants! The meal was excellent, and I was able to gamble $5 and play on it for about 30 minutes, and not lose anything! Everybody else enjoyed the microbrews (and the price $1!!). After dinner we toured another couple of the Casinos, and I came to the realization, that they all pretty much look alike, and Vegas wasn’t for me We parted company that night and went to bed.
Monday July 18, 2005
I wasn’t feeling too chipper in the morning, so Rob got up and went to do his PT stretches by himself. I figured after he left, I might as well get my ass out of bed and get a run in while I could. So I did, around the various streets surrounding our hotel, which in a word, looked like a ghetto. Not exactly the safest looking place in the world, even through there was a library and a school just down the road. I ended up doing mostly laps around the hotel and through the hills of the parking garage. A good workout. After a small (greasy), quick breakfast of McDonald’s, we used our privileges of staying at the hotel, and got our free ride up in the Tower...some 700 feet above the ground. There are 4 different ‘rides’ that you get on up there, a tower shot, a roller coaster, and two things that extend you off the edge of the tower, so you get to look down at the ground, and ponder how safe it is letting an 17 year old kid in charge of your safety. Go figure. The view up there was amazing...could see for miles! After getting back safely to the ground, we packed up the van again, and this time headed east towards Arizona and the Hoover Dam/Lake Mead. let me sum it up quickly this way: A lot of concrete, but a hell lot more heat. Our thermometer in the van was reading 124oF, so who knows how hot it really was out there...just absolutely stifling. My shoes felt like the soles were going to melt, and Sue looked like she was the one today that might go down in a heap. No tours taken, just some photos, lookie there, it’s Arizona, that’s a long way down...and let’s get back in the van...it’s dangerous out there! They’re fixing the road, so if you go there before 2010, expect delays. Amazingly enough, there are plenty Casinos along the way, in case you get the urge. We didn’t. Stopped in Henderson for a late Fazoli’s lunch (too tired and hot to eat). There was some mega traffic jam in town, so we ended up taking a lot of back roads through neighborhoods...and none of them all that nice. Although passing the Liberachi museum was quite a highlight. Since we had had quite a day so far, we took the rest of the afternoon off before heading to the Hilton for ‘The Star Trek Experience’ in the evening. Kristin and Donald decided to meet us there a little later. The casino near the attraction is themed all sci-fi, like...which was quite a shock to the system. Who knew? Everybody but myself and Sue went on to the Borg Invasion, so we set off for some water, players card and some slots. About this time, Sue got a phone call from back home saying her oldest son was in the hospital with some unknown ailment. A few minutes later, Kristin and Donald came in, and the rest of the group came out from the attraction and got the news. A fairly somber group headed back downstairs to Quark’s Bar for dinner, where many a Romulan ale was drunk. Also, some deal went down for ‘Cargo Bay Six’, but alas, nothing ever came of it. It was starting to get late, and we needed to get ready to move on to the second leg of our trip, so I said good-bye to my sister, and we headed back to our casino. Rob and I quickly packed and went back to the Casino for one last ‘big 2-dollar blow-out’. I lost mine, but I think he ended up cashing out with his money. Called it lights out a little after that, and prepared to assault the airport one last time, Southwest Airlines and Disneyland tomorrow!! It was going to be fun day tomorrow. Current Mood: sleepy
|Monday, August 1st, 2005|
As in Have a 'Good Night' and in 'It was a Good Night'
Talked with my friends on AIM....kept converstaions going, smoothed some things over, and well...it felt good.
*pat self on back*
good Kurt.... Current Mood: happy
|Tuesday, July 26th, 2005|
|Back from Out West
Couple days removed from the jet lag and whatnot...and I live!
A report will be forthcoming, and will include such treasures as:
*124 degree heat at the Hoover Dam
*A hug from Mellissa
*Losing a contact lens and becoming a pirate
*Running around the Disneyland Resort
*Broken A/C at the Las Vegas Airport
and so much more!!! Current Mood: nostalgic
|Kurt's Life is....
drunk on power, and non-perscription cold medications. Current Mood: creative
|Saturday, July 9th, 2005|
|Couch of Sin
I wonder if the couch in Apartment 110 at 38 N. McKinley Ave. in Athens, Ohio is still getting used...for sinful purposes.
Damn thing got more than I did.... Current Mood: nostalgic
|Friday, July 8th, 2005|
|Hurricane TV Coverage
Be safe, and for god's sake....don't turn on the TV.
Granted, there's still a chance (a la Charley, who was supposed to hit Tampa, but came in about 150 miles sooner) that Dennis could come our way, it's becoming increasingly unlikely...but the news coverage is awful about it. You'd think there's nothing else in the World (London bombings) or State (Shuttle liftoff in less than a week) going on but this hurricane....they really found a 'ratings whore' last year, and are damned to repeat things this year. It makes me sick to my stomach thinking that 10 months ago we went through this...and here Christy's going through it again...and still the talking heads sit there and stoically tell us not to panic, but to stay tuned! You may miss something!
More bad news for Pensacola: Jim Cantore from the Weather Channel has come to roost again on Pensacola Beach. As we've learned over the years, when he shows up in your town, you're fucked.
Current Mood: annoyed
|Thursday, July 7th, 2005|
Whoo-hoo....just over a week away.
And who knew that my sister was going to be in Vegas the same time I would be.
karma is strange. just add water and a twist of lime. Current Mood: karmatic
I've been doing some lifting at the YMCA and have started to get some callouses on my hands, which begs the question:
Callouses: Cool or not?
Or even better....cool on my hands or not? ;) Current Mood: pumped up (like Hans and Franz
|Wednesday, July 6th, 2005|
|Kurt's Life is....
the warm toilet seat in the bathroom of contemplation. Current Mood: creative
I've decided it's within my best interests not to run when
(a) the temperature is above 90 degrees at 6:00pm or later or
(b) the heat index is any combination of a 3 digit number starting with '1' (ex 102)
...there's something about not passing out that makes me feel good. :)
|Thursday, June 23rd, 2005|
Sanford has gotten about 10.5" of rain this month...average is about 6.4"
Orlando (Airport) has gotten about 12.85" ...average 7.35"
We're soaked. :/ Current Mood: wet
One inappropriate comment away from food stamp elgibility. Current Mood: contemplative
|Wednesday, June 22nd, 2005|
Not as complicated as real life, and therefore, superior! Current Mood: amused