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My Cycling Log

2008-08-16 22:32:49 861

So my last whole day without Emily here was pretty productive. I got up this morning and cooked a heart healthy breakfast of sausage, eggs, and grits. Then I got to work in our nearly new storage building out back. I had already put up a frame for a work bench out of 2x4's and one 2x6. Emily's dad had brought me some scrap plywood that was used for shipping containers to hold MRAP parts. He had already cut it to the right width for me, I just cut notches in it to fit around the 2x4 studs of the building. I put plenty of screws in it and it seems really sturdy. Above the bench I build a long shelf that is deep enough for paint cans. After that I took a while emptying stuff out of the utility room. It still looks like a wreck in there but at least there is more floor space. I even got some of my bike stuff moved out to the shed so Emily should be pretty excited to see the results. After that I did some dirt work in the front yard so that water coming off of the roof will have a better chance to run out into the yard instead of carrying dirt over the concrete.

In exactly 24 hours Emily should be at the Jackson airport! This crazy week started for me a week ago when I was already in bed at this time. We got up at 2AM Sunday morning and I got the car loaded. We got out on the road a little before 3AM. It was so crazy dark because there are not many houses along Hwy 25 and it was cloudy enough to completely hide the moon and stars. I only saw one deer and he stayed still for me. Then there was the suicide opossum that crossed my lane left to right and then made a sudden u-turn so I had to dodge him. Shortly after we saw "Ole Sniffy," an opossum posing like a prairie dog turning his head this way and that apparently looking for something smelly. I managed to dodge him too. Made it to the airport and I got Emily dropped off at the door. By the time I parked she had gotten checked in so we got a seat near security to kill 30 minutes. So then I had to put my sweet Emily on the first leg of an international flight all by herself. I was pretty bummed out. Anyway I made it back to Starkville without incident and fell asleep, completely missing church. So I'm doing Kidz church in the morning and then going out to Greg's house for a gathering. Then on to Jackson to pick up my Emily! I now know why she gets upset with me when I got on my 3-4 day trips without her. This house is really big and lonely when you are here by yourself.

2008-08-13 23:03:08 860

So biotech companies are fun to invest in. Especially when they are working on a nasal spray version of Viagra. Win win right? Not when the FDA comes down and says no. Then their stock tumbles from a nice $2 to $.30. Not so bad, we only had 100 shares. Of course now they have dipped down to .13 a share. I will pay twice as much in commission to sell the crap than I can get for it at this point. Sadly my fantasy portfolio is rocking. Started out with ALSK back in May which I "got rid of" in June for a nice profit. Then I proved that July 15 was the day to invest every cent possible into BancorpSouth. That's right, I'm only up 54.48% in less than freaking 30 days!!! But in imaginary money so it doesn't really matter. If I had invested $1 of real money I am sure things would have gone the opposite direction.

2008-08-13 21:22:45 859

Yay I got to talk to Emily for 10 whole minutes today on gtalk. She's having a great time even though she has to pay no telling what for internet.

2008-08-12 22:03:20 858

I love NBC's coverage of the olympics. The barely shrouded "she was taken away from her family at the age of three" referring to Chinese gymnastic athletes is awesome. Bunch of Commie cheaters making up birthdates for kids with fake passports. Oh well the London olympics will be better because the Sesser's and Waldroup's will both be there!

2008-08-10 21:30:23 857

Best digg quote ever: "GLOBAL WARMING!! FEAR FEAR!! FEAR! YOU'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!!!! FEAR!! GLOBAL WARMING!!! VOTE DEMOCRAT!!"

2008-08-09 19:36:35 856

Last Sunday was Cedar Point day. We got up and out of the hotel pretty quickly and got breakfast on the road at a fast McDonalds. After parking we headed straight to Millennium Force. It took us about 45 minutes in line but it was worth it even though it was so crazy tall and scary. From there we headed to Maverick but the line was extremely long. We quickly knocked out Mean Streak and the Cedar Creek Mine Ride. During the day we managed to ride nine of the coasters. For the most part they were all amazing. However Disaster Transport is the lamest "coaster" ever built, especially after having to wait 30+ minutes to ride it! We also did not get to ride Top Thrill Dragster. After waiting in line for an hour we had made good progress. Then it went down for mechanical reasons. We waited around a bit and right after we got completely out of the line, it was back up. Emily made me ride Sky Hawk which was the only non coaster we rode. We sat down long enough to see the wild west can-can show and the "extreme sports" skateboard and bmx show. After eight hours in the best park ever we were exhausted and decided to leave for Cleveland. That night we had supper at Panini's.Of course I called Garraway to brag about my sandwich. Downtown got really weird when the Neil Diamond concert got out so we called it an early night.

Yesterday we got up and had breakfast at Al's Deli. Then we walked over to the Great Lakes Science Center where we got to see the Einstein exhibit that had a lot of his handwritten papers and even his Nobel prize medal. We also watched the "Omnimax" showing of a movie about the Mars rovers. From there we walked back to Tower City so Emily could check out some shopping. After buying nothing we got the car and headed toward Blossom. About two miles from the exit from the interstate traffic was stopped in the right lane for the exit. I had the bright idea of skipping the exit to take the next and make a u turn to come up the less used side. That did not end up working because it was six miles away. We managed to get the Garmin to route us a pretty decent path which got us around the traffic until we were three miles out. From there it was crawling bumper to bumper. Finally we got parked a little after 8:00. We were parked so deep in Blossom that it was a short walk in. There were so many people; the amphitheater and lawn were both packed. We had apparently completely missed the opening act of someone I had never heard of anyway. The Radiohead show is by far the best live show I have ever seen. Nothing else even compares. They only played twenty-five songs including encores. The red lights with National Anthem was about the coolest thing ever. Somebody got a decent picture of it. We were a little farther back and a little farther left. Stupid me had thought maybe cameras were not allowed so we did not bring anything. At least I can find plenty of other people's pictures on flickr. Cleveland.com has a good article about it today. After the concert we were stuck in traffic for a while but it was not nearly as bad as getting there. We made it back to the hotel after midnight and had to hunt for a valet. So exhausted that we feel asleep as soon as we made it to the bed.

Got up early on Tuesday morning and out of the hotel. Used the Garmin to look for a place to eat on the way to the airport. Option one, the "Wild Bean Coffee Shop" ended up being a Shell station with coffee. Option two ended up sending us through a sketchy neighborhood that we turned back from. We ended up finding Somers Restaurant as we exited from the interstate. After returning the car the lady at the Delta counter let us know that our flight would be delayed and there was a chance we would not make it to Atlanta in time to catch our flight to GTR which of course was the last of the day. She set us up an alternate flight into Jackson from Atlanta as a worst case backup. Our plane actually left Cleveland only about 45 minutes late, and we were able to fly directly to Atlanta instead of around the storm system that had caused the delay. In Atlanta we had time to sit down at a Chili's and get some food. Then of course our flight out from there was delayed for mechanical issues. Luckily we left before too long and made it back to GTR before 5:00.

So this was my second time to Cleveland, the first big vacation for Emily and I since the honeymoon in Jamaica, and our first time to see Radiohead. Most wonderful trip and yay for Travelocity making it cheap!

2008-08-02 21:58:08 855

Emily and I made it to Cleveland safely on Friday. Sitting in Atlanta for four hours sucks but we lived through it. I even got to have a Nathan's hot dog. But it was in Atlanta and cost $6 for the combo and there is no way it could be nearly as good as the original. Made it into Cleveland and went to pick up our Alamo rental car. I was stoked because I had checked in online and knew I just had to go find a car and drive away. So we walked out to the lot and there were no mid sized cars to be found. We went back inside but the line was a mile long. Outside again, we found an attendant and he directed us to three cars that would fit the bill; an HHR, a Vibe, and a VW something tiny. Emily picked the HHR. We headed downtown and with only two U-turns I managed to get the car valeted at the hotel. We walked around and explored the Arcade even though everything was closed except the convenience store and the coin store. We found a neat place to eat, the Great Lakes Brewing Company. The food was excellent and we ended up taking the free tour of the place. We ended the night by taking in a comedy show at Hilarities.

Today we got up and went to the zoo. It was freaking awesome. Afterward we drove out to Mentor, Ohio to meet up with Becky for lunch because she has moved back to Pennsylvania. We randomly picked the Rock City Bar and Grill to eat at. The food was really cheap and pretty decent. $0.17 wings! Seriously! You cannot afford not to buy at least a dozen for $2something. The service was not the best because the girls' food was messed up for both of them and it took a while to correct. After we got done we drove to a park on Lake Erie and checked out the waves and strong breezes. We took Becky back to her car and said our good bye's and then headed back to Cleveland to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Emily and I spent a few hours there and had a great time. Best thing is that we had free parking. We drove back to the hotel and then went to Tower City to watch Hancock. Not the best theater but we had fun watching the movie. Now we are sitting downstairs in the hotel after finishing some food, greasy beef quesadilla for me and a salad for Emily. Now we are planning out our day tomorrow at Cedar Point!

2008-07-31 06:37:23 854

Going to be on a plane to Cleveland this time tomorrow!

2008-07-28 23:29:43 853

It has been a month of trips and work. Ended June with the trip for Emily's birthday. Started hard on July doing demolition on the hallway bathroom on the 2nd and 3rd. Replaced the tub and did a load of sheetrock work on the 4th. Also did some work on replacing the front and carport doors. Every night that week I was a busy boy working on something. Then Thursday morning the Garraway came through Starkville and picked me up to go to Province Governor Convocation in Evansville, Indiana. It was a wonderful educational experience, plus I got to go to the Gerst Haus three times. We made it back to Starkville late Sunday night and the bathroom had been painted and the window had been installed. Made it through the week and then it was time for the "Berryhill is going to get married" trip. That Thursday, Bryan and I met up with Sesti in West Point and rode up to Southaven. We got up early Friday morning and picked up our rental minivan at the Memphis airport. Everyone met at Sesti's and we actually got on the road on schedule. Made good time up the road and had fun touring Budweiser. We stayed at the Hyatt across the street from the arch. Most of Saturday was spent in trying to get up the arch until we had a wonderful supper at Jake's Steaks. When I got back Sunday night, all of the tile was done in the bathroom. Then during the week there were the final touches of putting up trim and installing the vanity and toilet.

Cory and Sarah made it here Friday afternoon to see the house in its current state. That night we carb loaded at City Bagel. This past Saturday started at 4AM for Cory and I. We did our usual food cramming routine and then got the girls and bikes loaded up in the Escape. Drove to Louisville and got all setup for the race. The Heart o Dixie has to be my most favorite triathlon ever even though it was the hardest and I was no where near placing. There was more roadside support on this race than any other I have been in except for maybe the St Jude half marathon last December. Anyway it was hot, but I still finished somehow. Cory and I beat the girls to the finish, and they were in a car. We met up with them after a while, purchased some Piggly Wiggly ribs from a trailer and got out of there as fast as possible. Once back in Starkville we tried to go to Sushi on Main but they are not open for Saturday lunch. Settled for Mugshot's and the usual Gamble for Cory and I instead. After a good shower, some rest, and a visit from Garraway, we watched the best Batman movie ever. We tore into the ribs later on for supper and called it an early night after some Wii. On Sunday I played with the eMac that Garraway so graciously brought me and straightened up the ancient iMac g3 500 for Cory for a garage computer. (in fact I am on the sweet sweet eMac right now!) So Cory and Sarah had to leave after spending mere hours with us. I'm special because I get to hang out with them again in two weeks but Emily will not be so lucky.

So there has been enough travel, remodeling, and events to last me a while. However this weekend is the Cleveland, Ohio trip for Emily and me. I will get to see freaking Radiohead at the Blossom Music Center!!!

Today's project was "buy a storage building." I succeeded in buying an 8x10 building and it was installed this afternoon. My lawnmower appreciates the wide open space but I'm hoping to put up some shelves and clean most of my tools out of the utility room.

2008-07-14 22:31:47 852

Emily's birthday trip was great. Started out with a bang Thursday afternoon when our front storm door shattered when Emily opened the front door. Apparently I must have started it cracking from a rock thrown on Wednesday by the weed eater. I took off a few hours on Thursday to get home and get packed to be ready at 3:00 to go. Emily's parents were on time and we got out of Starkville. Made it to Atlanta before it got completely dark and made all of the turns indicated by the newly obtained Garmin 350 except for one "stay left, oh and in 300 yards turn right, but I won't tell you that until you are on top of the intersection." I had hotwired the Hilton Garden near the Perimeter Mall. Ate that night at Wild Fire. The food was pretty good, my Parmesan covered NY Strip was great, however our server was mediocre at best. We ended the night by watching the Hulk. The Iron Man tie in at the end got me pretty excited about what might come out next summer.

On Friday morning we got the girls to the mall asap. Mr Joe and made a quick loop though the mall, breakfast at Chik-fil-A, and then we drove around the outskirts of the mall and checked out some other stores. After a while we caught the MARTA to get to downtown. It was a fun ride. We came out at the Peachtree Center and walked though Centennial Park. There was so much damage to the buildings from the strong storms that went through a few weeks ago. The entrance to the CNN center nearest the park was closed from the damage so we had to walk another half block to get into it. We did the CNN tour and it was pretty interesting. Not sure if it was worth $12 each but it was neat to see the actual studios. After that we walked over to the Coke place and did that tour. The 4-d show was pretty neat and some of the exhibits were interesting, but the best part by far of course is the tasting at the very end. European Coke products taste like ass but most of the African ones were pretty good. Everything else was hit or miss. After that we rode the MARTA back up north where the girls were still in the mall. After another hour or so they were ready for supper. Emily had read of Jalapeno Charlies and was interested in trying it out. So of course I plugged it into the Garmin and we headed out not realizing that it was back downtown. Driving though Atlanta is apparently always an adventure. Doing it on Friday afternoon at 5:15 is insane. Everything was pretty smooth until we got to the toll booth. Either something malfunctioned or the first car didn't have $.50 to throw in the bucket. We were three cars back with another car behind us so we were stuck. After a while the car behind us finally moved and we reversed out of there. I made it to downtown without much issue but had to make a block to find parking once we found the restaurant. The crazy thing is that we were within a block of where Emily's dad and I had come earlier in the day. The traffic was not nearly as bad on the way back but the Garmin's directions were sketchy. I had to turn around at least twice to get going the right way. The girls went for even more shopping and we ended the night by going to watch Iron Man.

Started off Saturday morning with a McDonalds breakfast. Drove to the mall and we all caught the MARTA to downtown to do the aquarium. Going to the aquarium in the summer on a Saturday is a very bad idea. We decided against it after seeing the hour line to get tickets that best case would be good in two hours. At least we walked through the CNN center and caught the MARTA on the other side to head back north to the mall. We drove out to Discover Mills which ended up being the largest mall I've ever been to. First time I have seen a Bass Pro Shops as a mall anchor store. After a while we headed back to the Perimeter for a while and then ate at Hudson Grill which was decent but had excellent spinach dip. From there I drove us up to Blue Ridge and made it to the Comfort Inn somewhere around 10PM. It was the nicest Comfort Inn I have ever seen, almost like a mountain lodge. Well it was kinda in the mountains so it makes sense.

We got up early and headed up to Ocoee Rafting after another McDonalds breakfast. Going rafting is pretty much hurry up and wait. We finally got on the bus headed to the river. It turned out that our guide was the bus driver and was in charge of the whole tour. The man was awesome, he could put that boat anywhere he wanted in that water. It was tons of fun, it was only the four of us and two young guys from Alabama. I cannot wait to go back. From there we started the long trek home through Chattanooga and Birmingham. It was a fun trip except for all of the waiting during the shopping expeditions.

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