Five

moiI didn’t note the day or the month, or even the year, for that matter. We say “when we were twelve” because that’s our best guess (though she probably remembers better than I).

It doesn’t really matter, the specific date, or even the year. What matters is that we met, and talked for a while one random, long-forgotten night. And then again another night, and another.

It was lost for a while, changes in life, adjustments in time zone, we didn’t connect at all and eventually lost touch completely. Until another random, long-forgotten night, when I decided to clean out my contacts list. She happened to be online, so I asked who she was. We talked some more, and eventually made a connection to an event we both remembered (something about underwear and pyromania).

Even for this, it doesn’t really matter, the specific date or time that we found each other again. What matters is that we did, and that we talked again, and again, and again, and then some more.

312570_10150300651507539_1218378609_nTime went by, and the story evolved in the way so many do. Boy meets girl, boy decides he likes girl and girl decides she likes boy, they get together and make the best of it. But that’s where we are a little different, because we are so far separated. Not in a Romeo/Juliet kind of way, our families didn’t hate each other – they didn’t even know each other. We faced a different challenge: isolation. I lived in Wellington, New Zealand, she lived in a small town somewhere in Virginia.

Somehow, though, we made it work. Through plane tickets and immigration paperwork and moving and money and more immigration paperwork, we made it work. And so here we are. Today marks five years since we committed to what we had in front of friends and family, what we had essentially committed to a few months before that by beginning the application process to USCIS, what we had almost committed to just by stepping foot on the planes the very first time, flying to meet the other, meeting the friends and family, seeing the home towns and environs.

Kelly, I love you. Here is to another five years, and then another five, and another five after that, until how long it has been doesn’t really matter anymore, until what matters is that we met that random, long forgotten night, so many years ago. You were, are, and maybe always will be the best decision I ever made – to ask who you were, and not to just hit “Delete.”

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Trains from Broadway

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Last night I happened upon a large number of old train documents that have been added to Google Books recently. I haven’t scanned for more recent dates, I just looked at 1906 and found three trains in each direction served the small town of Broadway, VA. That’s six a day, and four of those went to or came from Washington DC!

What’s more interesting is that I know where all of those locations are. And that the trip took upwards of five hours! Five! Today, we drive most of that in two hours, maybe three if you skip the interstates!

For more old train timetables, for anyone who is interested in the history or other parts of the country in that era, here is some more information on how to find the books in Google’s archives: http://www.naotc.org/oldguides/index.html

Changing Timezones

Changing timezone without moving anywhere. It’s a tough assignment, but I’ve been able to do it.

Since September 2010 I’ve been working for Rosetta Stone’s test lab on the second shift, generally working somewhere in the vicinity of 5pm-midnight. In the last few days I was asked if I would be interested in swapping positions with a member of the day shift team who needed to move for personal/family reasons.

I elected to think about it, and later accepted. As of yesterday (and everyone I work with is now aware of this, so I can tell the world in full), I am a member of day shift working “normal people” hours! I’m still officially part time, so there is no change in my 35 hour limit. The only change in pay has been a result of my regular company raise (also received that notice today!) so really all that changes for me is starting in the morning and finishing in the evening, and not the other way around..

New Home

Since the inception of this blog, it’s been hosted at WordPress.com. It was a logical choice for several reasons, predominantly because at the time I didn’t have a reliable web host and also because I wasn’t sure I would be able to commit to making regular updates.

As it turns out I’ve made a number of posts over the last four years and things I wanted to be able to do were being restricted by using a hosting service.

And so we have this new home: http://blog.i-al.net/. Much like the old one, but hosted by me. If it’s broken, blame me.

Where I’ve Been


visited 18 states (36%)
Create your own visited map of The United States or another interesting project

I thought this was kind of cool, I stumbled on it on a blog and thought I’d make my own. California hardly counts because it was only LAX, but it’s been three times so I put it in. Some of the others are just passing-through, but why not?

Photo Friday: Lonely

 

This was one of the last things I photographed in New Zealand, taken just a couple of weeks before I moved. I don’t know if it’s supposed to be a duck or a chicken, but it was sitting out in the rain close to the Wellington Airport.

I had decided to take a couple of days and just drive around, driving in no particular planned direction, just to see where I ended up and discover new things, as well as remembering old things.

The Drive Around the Bays is one I have done many times with my friends Sue and Amber, usually after church on a Sunday evening. We’d drive into Wellington and then do the loop around the bays (if you find a map of Wellington, it was basically a road that went all the way around the knob bit to the east of the airport). We’d stop somewhere and eat dinner – usually McDonalds or KFC, and then drive home. It was also a great time to talk about all kinds of things.

It’s certainly a downside here, not having the people to go with (it’d be fun to just drive somewhere with Kelly, but that was part of the fun of Sunday nights, being with friends I didn’t live with), and not really having the same kind of places to go.

 

Photo Friday: Wildlife [in Public Places]

These are a pair of photos taken in none-other than the capital of the nation – Washington D.C.

Both taken in/around the national mall, in fact.

It was on one of my early trips to DC that we visited the mall, and I was intrigued by the wildlife present in the city.

Coming from Wellington I was used to birds, but not so much other ground creatures. Maybe I just didn’t notice (and no, pigeons on the ground don’t count).