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FREE Ice Cream, Glimpse The Eclipse, Movies August 15, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Books & Movies, Food & Drink, Humor, Nature.
24 comments

These 3 stories might interest you:

#1  Uber is giving away FREE Ice Cream on Fridays

#2 How the Solar Eclipse will appear in your Zip Code

#3  Hollywood misses seeing us at the Movies

Maybe if movie theaters gave away FREE ice cream with each ticket they’d get a bigger crowd!

Aah . . . that’s better!

A Tree With A Split Personality August 12, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Nature, Travel & Leisure.
23 comments

We bumped into this tree near the Governor’s Palace in Colonial Williamsburg.

It’s got a split person-ality to it.

I wonder whether its caricaturish carvings inspired Disney to create the Tree of Life at Animal Kingdom?

I see definite similarities . . .

Aah . . . that’s better!

Are You Tripping?! June 27, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Nature, Travel & Leisure.
29 comments

Wherever You Go . . . There You Are

On the ride out, we took 4 days to drive 1972 miles.

On the return trip, we drove 2005.4 miles in 3 days ~> 486.6 miles + 766 miles + 752.8+ miles.

Surprisingly enough, I found sitting for mile after mile rather “meditative.”

It helped that most of the roads “out west” aren’t clogged traffic arteries like on the east coast.

Time is relative.  

Heading out, time changes from Eastern to Central to Mountain time gained us an hour on two different days ~ allowing us to leave late and arrive early. Lovely!

Heading back, we lost those hours . . . meaning that even though we left early, we arrived later than expected.

We are NOT minimalists on the road.

Before leaving, we followed the 3 P’s ~> packing, planning, preparation.  Did a hold on the mail.  Added minutes to the cell phone.  Charged up phone & iPad.  Packed most of our clothes . . . and ample food.

What?!  It’s a L~O~N~G drive so we need S~N~A~C~K~S!  Tropical drink

Georgia Troopers Mean Business

Right before we arrived in Dalton, traffic came to a stand still.

As we crept along at 2 mph, we saw flashing lights ahead.  Then more flashing lights.  Then a few more for good measure.

Arriving at the scene of the accident, we saw 11 police cars surrounding a sedan that had been pushed into the concrete divider by a cop car.

Problem solved!

The Difference Between Being Religious & Being Spiritual

Over margaritas, Pam shared a thought her minister had shared with her:

Religion is sitting in church thinking about kayaking.

Spirituality is sitting in a kayak contemplating a Higher Power.

Ohm . . .

Life is better with laughter.

In order to maintain a sense of humor during our visit, I picked just the right coffee mug to start each day:

“Life is too important to be taken seriously.” ~ Oscar Wilde

Quotes like that remind me to look at the light side of life!

Sharing with Stranger at the Breakfast Bar

At one of the hotels we stayed at, BFF got into a conversation at the breakfast buffet with a woman who was meeting with lawyers later that day.

When I overheard her say, “Lawyers make me nervous,” I tuned in to see whether BFF would reply, “I know.  I never should have married one!”

Actually, the whole conversation was a bit odd since BFF doesn’t normally share his time with strangers.  Especially not before breakfast!

This might just be stupidity talking . . . 

Our last day, we were anxious to Be Home and getting a bit punchy.  Everything seemed a bit funnier than usual.

*As open fields gave way to kudzu covered trees, I made an astute observation.  “Kudzu is just creep-y!”

*A few minutes later, Route 123 split off from Route 231, and I thought how tough a route change like that must be on someone with dyslexia.

*As we crossed into Florida at 2:30 pm (with another 6-7 hours of drive time ahead of us), I grinned at the thought of being HOME.  A minute later, BFF (who had done ALL the driving) groaned with fatigue when I said, “This might just be stupidity talking . . . but if we get home by 10, I probably want to unpack the car.”

She Remembers!

A few days after we got home, my sister spoke with mom; mom remembered that we visited!

Yay!  Some days she doesn’t even remember whether she had lunch . . .

Aah . . . that’s better!

Signs of the Times June 24, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Humor, Nature, Travel & Leisure.
24 comments

Weather often determines whether travel is smooth sailing or slow going.  On the way out west, the wet & wooly weather left us feeling a bit water-logged.

We had brief respites as the sun struggled to shine through layers of cloud cover.

Of course, the “soggy” weather had an upside ~> we weren’t tempted to stop too much.

The morning we left GA, a twister touched down in Dalton.  After hearing that, we watched the skies with increased intensity, searching for signs.

No, NOT that kind of sign.

We had our eyes peeled for signs of wicked windy weather ahead.

And we saw lots of it.

Lucky for us, we didn’t run into a deluge.

Instead, the rain mostly spit at us.

While offering sobering hints of what lay ahead.

No matter how fast we drove, we couldn’t escape the clouds.

But every time it seemed we were headed straight into harm’s way, the road shifted, steering us clear of danger.

Eventually a sign for Fort Collins came into view.

With relief, we headed north where the weather improved.

For most of our stay, we enjoyed sunny skies punctuated by short showers.

As we left for home, we enjoyed one last look at the Rockies . . . under Blue, Blue Skies!

With better weather ahead and over head, we looked for other signs.

The Lost Pizza Company in Tupelo, Mississippi did not disappoint.

STOP!  Those shades look FAB on you!

“Why thank you.  Thank you very much!”

Everywhere we looked, we saw signs that made us smile.

The Lost Pizza Company is . . . Like No Place Else.

We also enjoyed the signs at Busy Bee in Live Oak, Florida.

Including the sign advertising Clean Potties.

BTW:  The sign was spot on . . . the bathroom was spot less.

But our favorite sign appeared at the Florida Welcome Center, where we stopped for a shot of fresh Florida orange juice.

After all . . . there’s No Place Like Home!

Aah . . . that’s better!

Like A Kid In A Candy Store . . . June 21, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Health & Wellness, Mindfulness, Nature, Travel & Leisure.
28 comments

While in Fort Collins, BFF and I paid a visit to Natural Alternatives for Health ~> my niece’s favorite pot dispensary.

I loved it!

The “ohm-budsmen” were friendly and knowledgeable.

The prices were reasonable.

The decor was cool.

The selection was great.

A fun vibe all the way around.

Two days later, my niece asked me to smoke some “Critical Mass” with her.

Did I inhale?

Let’s just say, I enjoyed that “Rocky Mountain Hike in Colorado.”

Aah . . . that’s better!

Poudre Canyon & The Mishawaka Inn June 13, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Nature, Travel & Leisure.
22 comments

On Saturday, we drove through Poudre Canyon and stopped at the Mishawaka Inn for a “lite bite.”

The Mish, an inviting Inn and Concert Amphitheater, is located on the banks of the Poudre River.

The river offers ample whitewater rafting opportunities . . . something we took advantage of a few years back.

The sights and sounds from the back deck are spectacular.

A great spot from which to listen to the river sing.

Notice all the jackets . . . it’s cool in them there hills.

But the sun peeked out from time to time.

And there was a fire inside.

Surrounded by lots of interesting nooks & crannies.

I snapped a few last shots before we hopped back into the car.

With one more for good measure.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Rocky Mountain Hike in Colorado June 7, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Exercise & Fitness, Nature, Travel & Leisure.
26 comments

On our first day in Fort Collins, while still adjusting to the increased altitude, we decided to hike a local preserve.

We followed the path high up into the foothills . . . watching for rattlesnakes.

BFF and I lagged behind the pack because breathing at that altitude is hard work.

But the views were worth it!

A quick pit stop to learn about the history of the flora and fauna.

Nothing like a Rocky Mountain Hike in Colorado!

Especially in such a special place.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Drones: What Are They Good For? April 27, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Nature, Sustainable Living.
34 comments

Not just for “peeping Toms,” drones have a number of applications to improve things for the good.

Drones can be used for monitoring the health of farm fields, providing humanitarian aid, assisting first responders, conducting safety inspections of hard to reach places, surveying property damage for insurance claims, forecasting severe weather, and tracking poachers:

Drones have been a hot topic in the news for some time. Depending on what you’ve read, they’re devastatingly effective weapons of war, the next big threat to personal privacy, a revolutionary leap in video technology, or hazardous toys capable of chopping your fingers off.

To be fair, there’s a measure of truth to all those statements. But you might be surprised to learn that drones will soon affect our everyday lives in a host of useful ways. People are already using them to deliver fast food to hungry teens in Virginia, improve the productivity of Midwestern farms, and even protect rhinos and elephants in Africa from poachers.

To read more: 10 Ways Drones Are Changing Your World (Consumer Reports)

Aah . . . that’s better!

Walden ~> The Game, Not The Pond April 19, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Health & Wellness, Nature, Sustainable Living.
20 comments

I heard about this video game from Poets and Writers.

If you’ve got 45 minutes to commune with virtual Walden, this presentation by the game’s creator is a fascinating look at how and why she designed a video game modeled after Thoreau’s contemplative time On Walden Pond, where he concluded that it is not until we’ve met our innate and mundane needs for Food, Clothing, Shelter, and Fuel that we can turn our attention to inspiration, creation, and the more sublime and ephemeral aspects of life:

If you’ve got 13 minutes to wander in the virtual reeds, this clip will give you a glimpse of how Tracey has used gaming technology to slow “the quickening pace of life” allowing us to “play deliberately” and reflect, as Thoreau did, on how the choices we make change our relationship to nature and the sublime aspects of life:

If you only have a few minutes to walk in Thoreau’s footsteps and ponder his words and philosophy, this video game trailer will give you a sense of what “slow play” is all about:

Aah . . . that’s better!

 

Earth Optimist Summit 2017 in D.C. April 11, 2017

Posted by nrhatch in Nature, People, Sustainable Living.
12 comments

The Smithsonian, along with a network of collaborators, is hosting the first-ever Earth Optimism Summit from April 21-23 ~ and you’re invited!

Earth Optimism celebrates a change in focus from problem to solution in the area of global conservation with an unprecedented gathering of thought leaders, scientists, environmentalists, artists, civic leaders and international media, featuring public discussions, storytelling sessions, exhibition spaces and more!

Here’s the Schedule of events & speakers:  Schedule

Proceedings of the summit will be live streamed for the public, and community events will occur around DC.

In addition to the DC summit, sister events will take place around the world.

To learn more:  Earth Optimism Summit, April 21 – 23

Aah . . . that’s better!