Monday, May 04, 2009

I know you may not want to see me
On your way down from the clouds
Would you hear me if I told you
That my heart is with you now

She's only happy in the sun
She's only happy in the sun

Did you find what you were after?
The pain and the laughter brought you to your knees
But if the sun sets you free, sets you free
You'll be free indeed, Indeed

She's only happy in the sun
She's only happy in the sun

Every time I hear you laughing, I hear you laughing
It makes me cry
Like the story of life, of your life
Is hello, goodbye

Shes only happy in the sun
Shes only happy in the sun

-Ben Harper

Monday, November 17, 2008

Here is an interview that Loren and I did for the pop culture travel website, I am going to be famous on the internets! ZOMG!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

I laid in the moonlight with my sweetheart the other night. It was a crystal clear night with a big bright full moon. We went to the hammock at the end of the dock and laid in each other arms while the gentle breeze rocked the hammock. Then we went to bed and listened to Chicago sing power ballads and we giggled.

Life is fabulous.

Things have been a little hectic lately so it was nice to have peace and quiet and a little intimate moment with my love.

We are open for our 2009 season and while we haven't be jamming busy, we have been busy enough to keep the crew busy. Without our two senior staff members (one left for good, one left on an extended vacation), I have been appointed not only captain of the dive boat but dock leader. Add on top of that a new marketing plan for the resort that I am helping spearhead and you have one busy me.

I am doing more diving than ever though and our team and skills are really starting to gel so I am definitely grateful for all the opportunities that are being given to me (even if it means more responsibility!)

My 28th birthday came and went (and brought Tiffany boxes with it!) We adopted a new dog, Sarah and Rex is thriving and happier than anyone has ever seen him. The only thing missing is our friends and family and we are doing our best to get everyone motivated to come visit us.

Come out and see us!! There are plenty of hammocks and moonlight to go around (but I get dibs on the handsome dive instructor!)

Tuesday, September 02, 2008


So you can't see my island because it is buried under all those pretty colored lines that are predicting Hurrican Hanna's path.

This should be fun.

Sunday, August 31, 2008


How do people deal with this every year? "Oh, Fay passed us by, Gustav went to the west, oh no here comes Hanna, besides there are like two more possible storms in the Atlantic."

This is stressful. I'll take earthquakes and wildfires ANYTIME.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008


Today I found out "officially" that I am a blonde. Augggghhhhhh! I know that my hair has been bleaching in the sun but I was considering myself a sunbleached brunette. I ignored the first couple of blonde comments but today one of our guests (who is a hairdresser) informed me that I am, in fact, a dark blonde. Lord help me. I guess I will have to post some pics later and let the masses decide.

At Small Hope, we wear a multitude of hats...we are divemasters, instructors, captains, equipment techs, hosts, and bartenders. On our bar nights, we have to have a signature drink. Since I AM the Dive Bunny, I invented the "Bunny Hop." My only two requirements for my drink were that it include Jim Beam whiskey and that it be pink. I started experimenting and this is what I came up with:

2 oz Jim Beam Whiskey
3 oz ruby red grapefuit juice
1 oz pineapple juice
Amaretto float (1/2 oz maybe?)
twist of lime

It sounds a little odd...but it tastes GREAT! It turned out to be a hit. I get requests for it now and there are posts on the SHBL blog mentioning my drink. I am pretty stoked on it. You should try one!

Life here has been awesome as usual. Small Hope (the band) has been playing regularly and we are really getting our groove together. Our first single should be ready record any day now. Ash is getting his recording equipment together and then Dennis, Ash, and I will do the recording. We are getting three interns in during the next couple of weeks and we may wait to see if they sing or play instruments so we can flesh our sound out. We could really use a bass player!

We had a group of about 11 twenty-somethings in this week. A lovely couple from Amsterdam, Thijs and Fieke, who went out dancing with me on Saturday night. We went to the local bar, Hank's Place, where there is a great mix of Navy guys from AUTEC and local Bahamians. We got there around 10pm, started drinking Guinness and danced with the lightning striking onto Fresh Creek behind us into the wee hours of the morning. It was amazing.

The rest of the group are from the Virginia area and are a BLAST. They are total hams underwater and have created a need for shot glasses at the bar. We have been doing Kamikazes and Lemon Drops, listening to hip hop on the XM radio and all in all having a blast. I enjoy the mostly chill nights at Small Hope but this little change of pace has been fun.

The invitation for my 10 year high school reunion came. Loren and I are taking a week's worth of vacation to head back to Cali for that. I am looking forward to seeing a lot of people that I haven't seen in ten years. A LOT has changed in ten years besides my hair color! :)

I am sitting watching a heated game of ping pong and I think my attention is needed. New videos will be up soon, including an INSANE shark dive that I videoed today. The sharks were ALL up in my grill...just wait and see. :)

Thursday, May 08, 2008

It only took a month and countless misses but I FINALLY got to see a turtle!! :)

Monday, April 21, 2008

Island Love

Two of the guests got married yesterday afternoon. The entire staff was whipped into a frenzy to make sure that we pulled of the couples' perfect day. The outside bar was decorated with beautiful batik fabrics and native flowers and plants. Maintenance made and decorated a gorgeous arch that was placed at the end of an aisle of young palm trees. The weather cooperated and the ocean was flat, the sun was shining and there was slight breeze.

I was privileged enough to be the photographer and I was also privileged enough to lend the bride my promise ring so she would have something borrowed. The love and devotion that was in their eyes while they said their vows was so pure and so strong that I feel like my ring has been blessed by being in the vicinity of that powerful of an emotion. It was hard for me to focus through the tears (thank god for auto focus!!).

All of the other guests watched the ceremony and counted down when the bride and groom "took the plunge" by jumping off of the end of the dock. Then the happy couple changed into dry clothes and partied with the rest of the guests through a gorgeous sunset and under a full moon.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

This is paradise.


I am still pinching myself when I wake up in the morning and walk outside and this is what I see. Crystal clear blue waters with the bright Bahamian sunlight glinting off the little peaks that form over the reef. With the breeze blowing through my hair and cooling off my sun-warmed skin, I walk out to the dock and get ready for my day.

If you couldn't tell, Loren and I got hired on to Small Hope Bay Lodge. Our whole adventure started off in the middle of the night in LAX a week or so ago. We took the red eye flight (a very full flight) with a neverending layover in Houston. We got into Ft. Lauderdale and took a cab over to the small airport to wait for our ride to Andros.

I have to say that I am not a nervous flyer. I handle turbulence with ease and don't white knuckle the take offs and landing like Loren does. Sitting in the front seat of the Cessna, though, was a TOTALLY different story. I was practically sitting on my hands to keep from grabbing the pilot as we shot into the air. It felt like we were going so SLOW. I didn't know how we were even staying in the air. It was like we were being held aloft like a marionette plane with God pulling the strings.

The view from the air was absolutely breathtaking. The shoreline of Ft. Lauderdale and Miami fell away and then we were over the bluest water I have ever seen. As we approached the Bahamas, the water turned all sorts of different colors -- turquoise, deep blue, green -- belying the different depths of water that surround the island. We began our approach to Andros and we flew over the uninhabited and lush brush and forest that makes up most of the island that we were hoping to call our home.

Once we made a picture perfect landing at the airport, we cleared customs and took a taxi for the ten minute ride to the Lodge. All the details of our arrival are jumbled in my brain -- our cute little cabin with Androsia batik fabrics decorating the bed, the windows and the walls. The view of the dock and dive center. The main lodge with comfy couches, a games room for the kids and a bar that is made out of an old boat. The outside bar where the bar is always open and usually occupied, where steaming hot conch (pronounced "conk") fritters are served nightly.

We were settled into our room and told that cocktail hour started at 6:30 and our presence was requested. It was time to start interviewing!

Our first couple of days here were a whirlwind of new things. My first dive at Kara's Caverns left me speechless. The two interns that we have here, Ashley and Dennis, took us under their wings and showed us around. Ashley took me through my first little cavern and I was just blown away by how clear and warm the water is. I was definitely not used to that! I started learning how to handle the boat right away and learning all the focal points that the divemasters here use to find dive sites. They navigate the way the pirates used to...visual references only. It's definitely an art and I can't wait until I am as good as they are!

The other divemasters are awesome. Moose grew up on the island and Skeebo has been here for 12 years or so. Their knowledge and skill is vast and amazing and I am looking forward to learning a lot from them. They are also very funny and very warm. It's a team that I feel honored to be a part of.

The guests that were here the first week were AWESOME. Most of the families had been here before so they took care of us more than we took care of them. The teenagers were awesome and we had so much fun with them. I took a couple of the smaller kids diving for the first time and the older kids were the first ones to jump in the water with me when dolphins came to visit us around the dock. I got my bum whipped in ping pong but we all laughed and had a great time while I was going down in flames. When Jeff was having the talk with us to tell us we were hired, these families waited outside to hug us and congratulate us like we were long time friends. I hope that we will be long time friends...

There is such an interesting mix of people here. We have psychiatrists, professors, scientists, authors, artists and people who have forgotten more about diving than I will ever know. There is never a lack of interesting conversation or people to have fun with. Relaxing outside after a delicious meal, you never know if it will just be a quiet night of conversation or if Ashley is going to bring out his guitar and a rousing sing along is going to start.

I can't say enough about the diving. I haven't been to the same site twice since I have been here and I am diving three times a day. We have tons of corals, caverns, and interesting things to see. Today, we were diving in a place called Dianna's Dungeons and after being led through a couple of swim through caverns and while we were hovering over the top of the Tongue of the Ocean, a couple of reef sharks cruised over to check out what we were doing. They are harmless but poor Dennis got a little nervous when he was the last one down, unsetting the anchor.

Today is my day off...I went diving this morning because one of the kids that I taught to dive under the dock was doing her first open water dive and she wanted me with her. Her eyes were as wide as saucers when a barracuda swam by us but she was a champ and now she is hooked! After drying off on the dock, I grabbed my book and grabbed a hammock and relaxed in this paradise that is now my home.

Life is good. No, scratch is perfect.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


When we decided to go to Mexico to become instructors, Loren and I had this idea of how our life was going to go. We knew that once we finished our course and returned to the States that it would be easy to fall back in our old habits -- maybe even return to the same type of work. Having creature comforts like our Jeep and our dog and having all of our friends around is a powerful lure. So we made this pact that we would have a job before we came back Stateside. Things ended in Manzanillo a little sooner than we expected and we weren't where we thought we would be financially so we didn't have a position in place before we came home last week. I had been applying to places but since we don't speak more than one language, jobs have been a little hard to find. On a whim, I sent an email to a resort in the Bahamas that reminded me of the Lost Boys Lodge in "A Salty Piece of Land" by Jimmy Buffett, which is my favorite book. Loren hadn't even passed his instructor's course yet but I thought it would be worth it just to try. I was pleasantly surprised to hear back from the resort but after a couple of getting to know you emails, I didn't hear from them again. Loren and I left Mexico at the beginning of the week and on our last day down south, I got another email letting me know that the decisions were being made this week and Loren and I were definitely still in the running. Woot! Fast forward a couple of days. Loren and I are enjoying our stay in Idaho with my parents, even though it is really flipping cold and it is snowing. We have made our snow angels, had our snowball fights, and even had our picture taken with a little bear cub. ANNNNNNNNND, we have been asked to come to the Bahamas for an interview. We sadly told the resort that we couldn't afford the flight there because after all, we have been interning for the last four months. "Oh no worries," they say, "We'll fly you here and all of your food and accommodations are included." Oh. Okay! You don't have to talk us into that!! So we are headed to the Bahamas on 4/11. I thought it was just for a week but they just emailed and asked if we had any issues with staying on a little longer. Let me think about that for a second... :) So, we are pretty stoked right now. Now I just have to figure out how I am going to get home for my 10 year reunion in July!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Instructor Amanda

So I passed my Instructor Exam with flying colors. It wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be. As one of my instructor friends told me "You already know that you passed. Now just relax and do it." I relaxed, had a ton of fun with Mario and JT and we all came through with really good scores.

Now everything is changing around here. Greg left this morning, Nathan and Rachel will be gone this week. Tracy is leaving on Thursday, I think. And WORSE, JT and Mario are leaving for Acapulco on Thursday morning. They want me to come with them but I don't want to leave Loren again, especially not as his IDC is getting so close. It is going to really suck having my friends go though. I am going to be bored and lonely since Loren's focus is going to be elsewhere.

I did talk to Jorge today and I will start teaching next week. We have a big new crop of interns coming in, so I will be able to get my feet wet (so to speak.) I guess I will spend the time after my boys leave preparing my lesson plans and tutoring Red as she gets ready for her DM exams.

We have spent the last couple of days just hanging out by the pool, taking dumb pictures and listening to music. I am going to miss my guys a lot but I know that we will stay in touch and I know that we will all see each other again. I guess this is part of the world traveling thing...making friends but having to say goodbye as we all spread out to our little corner of the world.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

This is how I would sum up the Instructor Development Course...

Freezing in my wetsuit
Peeing in my wetsuit
Freezing even more in my wetsuit
Rinse and Repeat

(Rinse REALLY well)

IDC started on Tuesday of last week. We had orientation (not bad), the EFR Instructor Course (not bad) and then the Assistant Instructor Course started ( OH MY GOD! WHAT THE HELL IS THIS AND WHY WASN'T I WARNED ABOUT IT?)

Four hours in the pool in the morning, an hour to shower and eat, and between 6 and to 10 hours of class in the evening, plus homework. I have spent more money on coffee than I have on food. It's been insane and a ton of fun.

I have found that a lot of the instruction that I got at Neptune's has really prepared me for what I am doing in the IDC. I have gotten 3 perfect scores out of four presentations in the classroom and I have gotten three perfect scores out of six in the skills presentations in the water. You can definitely see the difference between the interns that have been here for months versus the students that just came in the for the IDC. We are kicking ass.

I have actually been so busy that I don't think about Loren every second of the day. I have his picture in my workbook so I can look at him and every time something good or bad happens, I can't wait to tell him when we talk at night. I am so exhausted that I fall asleep as soon as my head touches the pillow. IDC is definitely help me not be so sad all the time.

We had a couple of people come to Manzanillo just to do IDC. JT, who is Belgian, and Mario, who is Swiss. These guys are some of the sweetest and nicest guys that I have met. English is their second language and they work really hard to do all of their presentations in English. They make me laugh and keep me company and make sure that I eat! It's nice to have someone to check on me when I am shivering in the cold water or give me hugs when I am tired or sad. I don't think I would have made it through this endurance test without Loren for support if it hadn't have been for my two guys. One of the reasons that I came here was to make lifelong friends with people from all over the world and I think I have accomplished that with these two. :)

So now all of our instructor presentations are over for the Open Water Instructor certification and tomorrow we have some more casual presentations for our Specialty Instructor rating. We'll have our practice exams tomorrow afternoon and have Friday morning off. Friday afternoon, the Instructor Examiner from PADI shows up and the IE starts that night with exams.

I am feeling really confident right now and happy.

PLUSSSSSS, LOREN COMES HOME ON SATURDAY!! I can't wait to see my babyluv and give him hugs and kisses and everything nice. It will be wonderful to have him home again and just before the end of the IE so he will be here to congratulate me in person if everything goes according to plan.

Time to go prepare my specialty presentation (Fish!)

Saturday, February 09, 2008


ery day living and working with your significant other, you definitely start to get on each others nerves. You argue over little things and sometimes you just wish you had a little time to yourself.

That all changes when you get bad news from home and your significant other is gone 24 hours later and now you don't know what to do with yourself.

I don't know what to do with myself.

He's only been gone for 10 hours and I already feel like I have this huge piece missing from my heart.

I feel helpless here. I don't feel like I can give comfort from here, to him or to the family. Loren thought it would be best if I stayed and finished what I have been working towards but I am so adrift right now in feelings of guilt, sadness and loss that I am not sure we made the right decision.

Hopefully tomorrow will be better. The few better acquaintances that I have here have banded together to make sure that my mind is occupied so I am not thinking so much. I have a ton of homework to do and a ton of diving to do still before the hectic two weeks of IDC start.

He is my shelter from the storm, my rock, my love and my best friend. I miss him.

If I feel this way knowing that he will only be gone for two weeks or so, I can't even imagine how his mom is feeling, watching her husband slip away.

Please pray (if you pray or send good vibes if you don't) for Loren's stepdad, Frank. He is a loving husband and father and has helped shape Loren into the loving and wonderful man that he is. His battle has been tremendous but it's over now and he is fading fast. Please pray for a gentle passing for Frank and for comfort and love for his wife, Kelly and his children, Carrie, Loren, Paul, Alyssa and Cami.

Friday, February 01, 2008

Okay, so details...

I was supposed to take my Divemaster exams last week but I didn't feel ready so my wonderful instructor, Cheryl, let me delay them until Monday. I passed all of my practical exams (skills, leading clients, stamina, etc.) and all I needed to do was take my written exams. I studied, studied, studied over the weekend and took my exams on Monday. I hadn't been nervous while studying or while taking the exams but while I was waiting for Cheryl to grade them, I was a freaking wreck!!

But I passed. And I am happy. :)

We also got taken out on the boat on Tuesday to do a watermanship test that Jorge requires of us because he has met too many "professionals" who are scared to be in the water. He had us do a "bailout" which is a Neptunes requirement for becoming a professional. Basically, he took us to 12-15 feet of water. We had to jump in the water holding all of our equipment with the air turned off and the regulators purged. Once we hit the bottom, we could turn on our air and breathe and then we had to put on all of our equipment without losing control of any of it. In order to sink effectively, you can't inhale and hold your breath because your lungs keep you buoyant. So you have to EXHALE (which is totally against instinct) and then jump in.

I asked Jorge how many people do this on the first time and he said "None."

Oh, how I love a challenge ( and a bet!! He bet us dinner...)

So Mac went first but his feet broke the surface so he failed. Then Greg went and we watched as his bubbles came up, which meant he was breathing, then Jorge gave us the play by play from the surface. Weights on, fins on, SCUBA unit on, and he did it!! Woot!

So SOMEONE did it. This meant that I could do it too.

I jump in with my kit in my arms and hit the bottom about two seconds later. I have the lung capacity of a gnat so I was hurting already. I was yelling at my carbon dioxide levels in my brain "YOU DO NOT NEED TO BREATHE YET!!" I almost bailed but then I got my air turned on and found my reg. Okay, the hard part is over...

I wasn't trained with a weight belt so I am not that smooth with one but after I got it on and got my fins on, I realized that I was going to do this! BCD goes on and VOILA! I DID IT!!! Wooooooohoooooooooooooooooooo!

Doing the bail out on the first try was better than passing my exams. I don't have a fear of water, per se, but my asthma is always a big consideration when doing things like this and I really think I conquered it.

Besides, Jorge owes me dinner now. :)

Thursday, January 31, 2008


You are reading the blog of an official PADI Divemaster! Yay me!

More details when I have time but...


Saturday, January 19, 2008

Thank god for the sushi place with wireless access. I can catch up while my sushi is being made.

January 8th was the Neptunes anniversary and Jorge (the owner) decided to do a trip up to Puerto Vallarta to celebrate. Only Jules, Melissa, Kiel, Treasure, Loren and I decided to go along with Mariano, Jorge and a couple of the office girls. Mariano took all the interns in the scuba limo and after the requisite stop at Kiosko for some New Mix and beer, we all set off for the five hour trip to PV.

The ride through the hills of Mexico was beautiful. There are so many little towns along the way (with accompanying speed bumps -- the "topes" inspired a drinking game). We were playing music in the van and we had a grand old time all the way to PV.

Puerto Vallarta is a much larger city than Manzanillo is and it is much more of a tourist destination. I was so surprised (and a little dismayed) that there were SO MANY WHITE PEOPLE. Everyone spoke English and it was such a departure from our sleepy little town that it was a bit of a culture shock. I wonder how I will react to going back to the States...

Once settled into our hotel, Jorge treated us out to lunch and then we all went to this nice bar on the beach. There are SO many vendors that peddle their wares to the tourists. We got sucked in with all the rest of them and ended up with ponchos (Loren bought me the cutest pink one!) and a blanket. We went back to the hotel and all got ready to go out for a nice night out.

Manzanillo is not really a dress up place so it was a good change to get all prettied up and go out to a good club. We started out at a place called Zoo, where Kiel and Thunder got rejected so much that we started calling them Crash and Burn. Then we went over to Senor Frogs, where Kiel put on a very, very entertaining display of drunken dancing. Loren and I stumbled back to our room at 4 in the morning.

The next day, we went shopping (yay!) and I got a great silver scuba diver pendant and necklace and I bought Loren a silver wave ring, which he loves. It was fun bartering with the salespeople, especially when they asked where we are from and we answered "Manzanillo." We "convinced" them that we were Mexican and they were a little more open with us. We had a lot of fun with them.

We met the boys and Mariano at a beach bar called Burros. I almost peed my pants when we found out that they were at a "donkey" bar. They weren't really but they were at this great beach bar where they were having a two for one happy hour. It was AWESOME! We did get the bad news that we were stuck in Vallarta because the van was having problems. I was bummed that we wouldn't be getting back because my schedule was so tight with Divemaster but it was also another night to have fun in PV.

We went out again to the Zoo and a place called Hilo. The Tequila Girls loved me at Hilo, especially after this stranger bought me four shots of tequila on the floor. The girl just kept feeding me shots and shaking my head all around. Jules and I danced on the bar and we had a really great time.

The van was fixed by Thursday so we got to go home but the ride home was much different than the energy filled ride up...we all slept on the way home.

Last week, I officially declared myself for the February IDC. With that declaration, everything changed. I need 40 more dives to take the Instructor Exam and I am still completing all of my Divemaster requirements. I finished my DM classes on Friday and next week is all graded skills, dives and my stamina test. I will do my written exams on Friday. Neptunes has their own Divemaster exam that we have to take to make sure we are ready for the PADI exam. I hear that it is tougher than the PADI exam AND we have to get an 85% on it, as opposed to the 75% required for the PADI exam. Neptunes expects their divemasters and instructors to be better than the norm. That's great because I like being the best of the best but it is intimidating all at the same time.

We had a crazy night last night, taking our homemade beer bong (aptly named Billy Bongski) to Bora's. I was barmaster last night, couriering the bong around to any table that wanted to use it -- fun that needs no translation. I met some American guys from Minnesota that were happy to talk football with me. They disappeared very suddenly when Loren came out to make sure I was okay. He tells me they weren't interested in talking football. Boys are funny that way...

We all chilled on the beach today, dodging in and out of the waves that SMASH on the beach by the girls house. These things are thick and heavy and they break fiercely on the shore. I time my entries and exits very carefully but the boys just mash their way through. I was sitting on the beach, reading when Loren pointed out the humpbacks that were breaching in the bay. They were a ways off but it was awesome watching them...

Sushi just showed up and then back home to study....

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Mexican Diet

It`s never a bad thing when someone who hasn´t seen you in a couple of weeks runs into you on the street and says "You`ve lost a lot of weight!!" I guess all of this walking, swimming and hauling of tanks is finally starting to pay off. I have noticed my clothes getting looser but it was nice to hear someone else say it.

Stress may have something to do with it also. I officially declared myself for the Instructor Development Course that starts on Feb 11. I haven´t completed my divemaster course yet so I am simultaneously working on that and prepping for IDC. It is kind of crazy but I thrive best under pressure so I think I am handling it pretty good. Loren is being really supportive of me and is helping me get through it. He is really being a trooper because I can be grumpy when I am stressed. He is waiting to do IDC in March so he can get more experience and this way, we`ll be able to take care of each other as we do our respective IDC`s. It`ll be nice to have someone to cook for the other and do their laundry!

Decompression theory class starts soon, so I will have to write more later...especially about our whirlwind trip to Puerto Vallarta and our new housing arrangements!

Friday, January 04, 2008

We have had a ton of time off over the last two weeks, three days for Christmas and three days for New Years. Peter´s dad passed away the day after Christmas so he and Eric left the day after that and our class went from four to three.

We were only three for a day before Melissa and Juliana, two American girls that met while studying abroad in Australia, decided to get away from Chicago and Pittsburgh respectively and joined us in Manzanillo. These girls are a BLAST. We were instant friends and now are inseparable. We have been having so much fun, partying it up on the beach for New Years. There was a crazy ass Mexican lighting BIG fireworks (with his cigarette!!) off right next to us on the beach. This was also the night that Jo Treasure (his real name!) joined us from Australia. I immediately dubbed him Thunder (as in Thunder from Down Under) and we proceeded to get hammered together. It was awesome.

We started classes up again on Thursday, with Thursday morning being my first dive acting as a Divemaster. It was a little unnerving being in charge of getting the boat loaded and doing the briefing for our five clients but I think that I managed it. We dove Elefante and I assisted Kalen with skills for our Open Water referral and our one Advanced Student. Matt, the OW diver, and I played catch with one of my golf balls while we waited to Kalen to teach Matt`s older brother, Eddie, how to tie knots. They were really great guys and we had a lot of fun diving.

We did our second dive at the the wreck. Viz was pretty bad but we still managed to see a couple of eels and rays. The guys had fun and that was all that mattered.

Oh and did I forget to mention that...


Oh yes, not underwater, it was on the way out and on the way back but the humpbacks are migrating through our bay and they were coming up for air and flipping their tales all around us. When we were diving at Elefante, you could hear them singing. It was SOOOOOOOOO awesome.

We had class later on where we reviewed the areas we could improve on as DM`s (like we didn´t carry enough weight) but overall, I think everything went well.

This morning, we went out to Horses Ear, where Kiel and Kalen saw an eagle ray (lucky ducks) and we went to Huapan, where Kiel and Nathan saw a couple of sharks. The whales were singing again, closer than they were yesterday. It is so peaceful to swim around, checking out the scenery while the whales sing in the background. Jules and Melissa are so much fun, making jokes on the surface and we have some pretty creative signs underwater that crack all of us up.

Well, it`s time for class again so I better sign off. Hasta luego...

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Just a quick update...

The power cord to our computer broke so we are at the mercy of the two other people in our group that have compatible cords. This method has been unreliable at best but we expect another cord within a couple of weeks so stay tuned...

I have been out of the water sick for the last couple of days but I am itching to get wet again because three turtles were spotted at Roca Elefante. I want to see a turtle!!

We got upgraded into the upstairs couples apartment. It only has two bedrooms so we will get a little more privacy and a lot more space. We also inherited the kitten that came with the apartment, Intern. It's lovely having a cat again! :)

All in all, life is VERY good in Mexico. We couldn't be happier spending our Christmas here with our new friends. In case I don't get the chance, I am wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas! :)

Feliz Navidad amigos!

P.S. Divemaster training starts on Friday! Wish us luck!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Every now and then, we see something that makes us do a double take and go "Whoa, we really ARE in Mexico!" It might be the chickens that accompany us for part of our morning walk to work or the horse we saw sitting in the back of a really small pickup truck or coming home to discover that our water was not working at the house.

Apparently the water outage was a municipal maintenance thing that killed our water pressure. Luckily, for reasons that we don't know, a hose spigot did work in the backyard so with a little help from a ladder and some MacGyver ingenuity, I rigged up an outdoor shower and was able to get washed up (wearing a bikini) in the backyard.

We have been diving like crazy over the past week. We headed out to a site called Carazales and did a 70 foot deep dive to satisfy the requirements for a couple of guys in our class. I'm not too keen on deep dives because of my asthma but my buddy, Greg, was awesome and we saw some fascinating things, like a little seahorse ( my first time seeing one!).

After the deep dive, we got to do a fun dive on a site with coral gardens. I felt like we were swimming through a scene from Finding Nemo. The coral is largely untouched so the scenery was a riot of color and activity. We saw a bright yellow puffer, a lizardfish, tons of damselfish and these cute little bright blue fish that were the size of my thumbnail.

We dove the wreck again on Thursday and actually got penetrate it. Cheryl took us in through a hole in the hull and we got to swim around a little. It was freaking unbelievable! Loren actually got some video of it that I will post a little later. We also dove Roca Elefante, where we got to dive through this narrow canyon. It is pretty humbling to swim through a pass with 40 foot tall walls on either side of you. We saw a spotted eel that was easily 5 feet long. He was huge and posed for a couple of pretty pictures for us.

PADI requires divers to have 100 dives before they can start the Instructor Development Course. I have 40 dives and the other divers in my class on have logged 25 or so, so we all have our work cut out for us to be ready for the February IDC. We have been doing short "bounce" dives in the bay to help us log more dives. There is a lot of activity in our little bay in front of the hotel. There are a ton of rays, stonefish, puffers, and schools upon schools of other fish. We have been logging about 4 dives a day, doing two with class and at least two on our own. Doing a couple of bay dives on our lunch break or after class is a great way to relax.

When we got to Mexico, the class before us was starting their IDC, which is 14 days straight of tests, skill assessments, presentations and STRESS. We have barely seen any of the instructor candidates since we have been here and we live with four of them. They completed their Instructor Exams yesterday (with 100 percent pass rate!!) and everyone gathered at the beach house to blow off some steam. With Instructor Kalan leading the drinking games and Instructor Laura playing DJ, we bonded over tequila shots and a hilarious game of Kings. Most of the new instructors are going home over the next week or so, so it was nice to get to know them a little better before they leave.

We have Rescue class all this week (still review for me) and next week we have a lot of time off because of the holidays (we get Boxing Day off!!). After that, we start our Divemaster classes and are on our way to being PADI Pros!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

After a yummy lunch at the hotel canteen (30 pesos for all you can eat!) we kitted up and loaded up on the boat to head out to the wreck for our wreck dive.

On our way out of the bay, Cheryl briefed us on the wreck of the San Lucia. The San Lucia was a cargo ship carrying dry goods (some say drugs) into Manzanillo in 1958. After offloading its cargo, the ship got caught in a hurricane and sank in 20 feet of water off the Manzanillo coast. As we approached the wreck, we could see bits and pieces of it sticking up out of the water, serving as perches for a couple species of sea birds.

We tossed our kits into the 78 degree water and jumped in ourselves. Cheryl paired Peter and me together and Loren and Kiel together since they had cameras. We did our proper five point descent and hit our max depth of 20 feet. With Cheryl leading the way, we started off on our tour of the San Lucia.

Maintaining neutral buoyancy, or hovering, in the water is akin to flying. So we flew next to the wreck, hovering to examine the nooks and crannies that the aquatic life have turned into their habitat. The ship is full of life, as if Mother Nature is atoning for claiming the ship as her own by turning it into a glorious display of color and movement. Hundreds of fish of every imaginable color, shapes and size swim around us, seemingly choreographed in an elaborate dance set to the haunting and sorrowful lament of the ship itself, which sings a groaning song of warning, or perhaps surrender, as it moves and shifts with the changing tides.

50 years of salt and sea have rusted holes in the ship that allow sunlight to filter down on us. With a slight inhalation of breath, one can rise up and peek into those holes to spy on the schools of fish. Some swim out to peer back at you before darting back to their pack, seeking safety in numbers. You may find yourself reflected in the black eyes of a dog faced puffer fish, who matches your gaze warily, not particularly wary anything, much less a human. It is a magical and enchanting experience.

We did two dives on the San Lucia and saw (most notably) two eels, some trumpet fish relaxing in a reclaimed metal cage ( a shark cage? Or perhaps it was once used to transport exotic animals?) and a huge puffer fish that would have been the size of a basketball if he had been threatened enough to puff. We all clambered back onto the boat, tired but chattering excitedly about what we had seen.

Now we are back at home after a quick stop at the Commercial for dinner supplies (ramen, avocados and chocolate milk for me…I’m in a weird mood). Loren is on the computer editing his photos and I’m writing this longhand to be transcribed later. We have our deep dive tomorrow so we need to get some much needed shut eye.

Hasta luego!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Alright, we are going to do a fast forward to yesterday since I will never have the time to catch up everything…


The resort has a certain Kellerman’s feel to it (the hotel from Dirty Dancing). Everything is all inclusive and they have a myriad of activities that the hotel patrons can occupy themselves with all day. There is cheesy 80’s and 90’s pop music blaring by the poolside all day and every so often an MC gets on the PA system to announce that water aerobics are starting in the lower pool. There are families with screaming kids running down on the beach with the dumpy matrons in skirted, flowered swimsuits chasing after them. The performers for the “Hollywood” stage show practice their dances, choreographed to the soundtrack from Austim Powers on the main stage. My fellow employees at the towel stand make small talk with the customers while getting their information to give them big fluffy towels for the poolside. I drift around humming “I Have the Time of My Life” while gathering my mask and fins to head down to the bay for rescue drills.

Our instructor, Cheryl, must have been in a sadistic mood because she started us out with a 400 meter swim. Then we had timed runs with the torpedo buoy, Baywatch style, to “rescue” one of our classmates. As I made it out to Peter, huffing and puffing, I swore she was trying to kill me. Luckily, I felt better and got faster the more we did it. I was hoping that we would get to do kayak rescue but Cheryl let us out early so we could get a couple of dives in the bay. Unfortunately, the IDC kids had taken all the weights, so there was only enough weights for Loren and Kiel. So poor little me had to lay out on one of the lounges and work on my tan before we had to head to class for our Primary Care class.

After a couple of hours laughing at each other performing CPR on our “victims,” the CPR dummies (Sid and Nancy), all four of us (me, Loren, Peter, and Kiel) headed out to walk around town and get some food. We stopped in at the boy’s house (which made me feel lucky that we have such an awesome house) and then over to Peter’s favorite taco stand. There is certainly nowhere in San Diego where you can score four carne asada tacos and two Coronas for less than five bucks. We just relaxed in the waning light and talked about our lives outside of Mexico. It was a nice way to unwind after a tough, physical day.


Our toilet is stopped up at the house and there is no plunger in sight, which means Loren is not a happy camper. I guess we’ll add a plunger to our shopping list for tonight. We are luckier than others though. The electricity went off at Peter’s house yesterday and judging from his look when he came to class, it wasn’t turned back on yet.

We headed out early to class this morning and in what has become a routine over the past couple of days, we were followed to class by a skinny little black and white dog with a bum leg. I’ve named him Tripod. Apparently he likes gringos because he used to follow Cheryl around. He’s a savvy little fellow, crossing the street at stoplights to lessen the chances of him getting hit. He will trot in front of us, turning around every so often to make sure that we are still behind him.

I’m typing this on a break from our Deep Dive class. We got interrupted this morning by the IDC class charging into ours because they smelled smoke in their classroom. There is no fire but they are airing out the room.

Oh, class is starting again…to be continued after our wreck dive this afternoon.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Since my time on the Internet is limited at best, I’ve decided to keep my journal throughout the week and add it to my blog when I get the chance to log on.

As I said before in my earlier abbreviated post, our arrival to Manzanillo went without incident. It is a little frightening to step off of the plane in a foreign country, not knowing for sure if a person that you have never met before will be there waiting at the gate for you. Mariano was there just as we expected and he carried our over packed luggage to a dented blue cargo van aptly named the “Scuba Limo.”

The drive through the outskirts of Manzanillo was a study in contrasts. Modern vehicles shared driveway space with pecking chickens and an occasional goat. Modern clothing hung on clothesline flapped in the breeze. The countryside is beautiful and I felt like such a big tourist gawking and clapping my hands at every new sight. Mariano casually lit his cigarette and turned the radio to Sublime as he drove us towards the heart of Manzanillo and our new home.

When we got to our house, an unassuming two story white stucco structure with wrought iron balconies, we were greeted by a couple of our new roommates who were hanging out in board shorts on the balcony, surveying the fresh meat. We were only able to catch a quick glimpse of cool white tile, built in couches and ceiling fans before Mariano told us that our room had not been cleaned to their standards and that they would be putting us up in a hotel for the night.

After settling in to the hotel, Loren and I set off to exploring our new city. The weather was hot and muggy as we set off in the dusk. The streets are lined with little shops, hawking everything from beer, to tacos, to scooters for rent. Everyone is very nice and answers our greetings in kind as we stroll by. We find our way to an ATM and muddle our way through converting dollars to pesos, since that is what the ATM dispenses. Mariano had recommended a restaurant to us so we stopped in there to have dinner.

We were pleasantly surprised to see Mariano and Erik, who is the IDC instructor from Cancun, having dinner and they asked us to join them. Loren and I looked on in bemusement as they continued a very lively conversation in Spanish. Aside from the occasional dirty word, I had no clue what they were saying. Erik is from Holland and still has an accent when he speaks English, so hearing him speak Spanish is entertaining.

After a delicious dinner of Shrimp in Tequila Sauce and a couple of cold cervezas, Loren and I made our way out of the restaurant and decided to take a walk to the beach.

One thing that we failed to discover before moving here was that the topography is very hilly. You have to breach a small mountain in parts of the town to head to the beach. We discovered this VERY quickly that night. By the time we reached Playa la Audiencia, we had sweat dripping down our bodies and had certainly worked off some of our delicious dinner.

The beach was definitely worth the walk. We walked along the sand that was lit only by the lights from the Tesoro hotel that was behind us. The waves lapped gently along the shore and there were small skiffs that were anchored in the bay. The water was warm and clear, with little bits of bioluminescence that danced around our feet like fallen stars. Walking along through this vision of paradise with the love of my life was a memorable and very welcoming experience for our first night in Mexico.

Day 2 - Monday

We spent Monday morning lounging around our hotel room, relaxing and enjoying the air conditioning. Our ride was supposed to be at the hotel at noon to take us to our house but as noon came and went, we were slowly being taught the lesson of manana time. Everything always happens manana (which usually means in a week!) Mariano arrived about a half hour after twelve and loaded our bags once again into the van and took us to our little house.

This time when we entered the house, we had the time and opportunity to survey our surroundings. There is a common area that contains the small kitchen and a raised living room area that has built in wraparound couches and a coffee table. There is also a built in bookcase that had been used as a place to store shoes (which rapidly changed when I unloaded the twenty some odd books that I brought with me.) The whole house is done in white tile with blue accents. It is all very Mexican.

Since it was Monday, all of our roommates were in class, with the majority of them beginning the rigorous 14 day Instructor Development Course. We share our immediate living space with four other people and there are four more that live above us in another apartment, although we have come to find out that everyone mingles in and out of both houses. Alan and Rachel are the other couple in our apartment. They are an older married couple from northern England. Alan is one of our instructors and Rachel is in the Divemaster course.

Jon and Jason are roommates in the room next to ours. Jon is 19, from Missouri and is about to become an instructor. He is leaving us on the 19th to go to England and join his fiancee, whom he met while in Mexico. Jason is in his early 30’s, is a professional lifeguard and backpacked his way down from his home in Canada to Mexico to become an instructor. We didn’t get a chance to hang out with our roomies because they were working so Loren found out a good snorkeling site from Mariano and we changed into our suits and grabbed our gear, eager to get salty.

As we trekked our way through the heat and humidity, following the directions that Mariano had given us, I started to feel as if we had a joke played on us. Mariano had said that the snorkeling spot was a twenty minute walk away from the shop, which was a twenty minute walk away from our house. He failed to mention that the twenty minute walk was two miles straight up hill. A very steep hill. With red faces and drenched bodies, Loren and I trudged up and up, teased by a slight ocean breeze and a glimpse of the water between adobe and stucco houses.

We finally found our way down to Club de Yates, the snorkeling spot. We laughed and groaned aloud when we looked across a natural jetty to see gently bobbing boats and the Tesoro hotel and figured out that we could have easily swam to the beach from the beach we were at the night before, saving ourselves a long and hot walk. We didn’t ponder this for long as we quickly grabbed our gear and jumped in the refreshing water.

All the years of snorkeling and diving in San Diego did not prepare us for what we saw in our first glimpse of the Manzanillo coast. Schools of brightly colored fish surrounded us, darting in and out of the coral. Loren spotted a ray straight away, followed by a couple of dogfaced puffer fish. We saw more different species of fish in the first five minutes than we had in all our time in San Diego. Loren immediately lamented not bringing his camera. After an hour or so in the water, we decided to forgo the long walk home and loaded our clothes into our bag and swam around the point to Playa la Audiencia and walked home from there to fall into bed, exhausted and happy.

Day 3

Grocery shopping in Mexico is an experience in itself. We found our way into Commercial Mexicana, which is a shopping mall that surrounds a grocery store akin to a Super Walmart. There is a Walmart in town but I wanted a true Mexican experience and Loren indulged me. Doing quick conversions in our head, we have discovered that groceries are MUCH less expensive here. That did good to settle our minds since we are on a tight budget. We got through our shopping trip without much problem, especially thanks to the kind clerk at the seafood counter who gave me ½ kilo of shrimp (which is about a pound) instead of the kilo that I requested. I supposed I will get the metric system down soon enough.

We had to go to the Barcelo Karmina Palace in the afternoon to see where we would be working and training for the next six months or so. I was definitely in awe of the gorgeous landscaping and architecture. It is very obviously a high class resort and I feel privileged to be able to work there and hang out by the pool on my breaks.

This was our first opportunity to really talk to the two other new interns that would be training with us, Peter and Kiel. Peter is a tall and lanky twenty something with flaming red hair. He has been diving since he was 13 and decided to cruise on down from Wisconsin to escape the cold for the winter. Kiel is from Maryland and he is a fellow adventure seeker like us. He doesn’t live to work, he works to live, saving up his money to subsidize frequent world traveling. We all seemed to get on rather well, which is good since we will be spending A LOT of time together.

We jumped in the pool to do our swim tests, so Alan could assess where we are as far as stamina goes. I hate to say that I failed miserably but I am happy to say that Loren flew through the water, handily beating the rest of our class. Luckily, the pool opens at 8am, a half hour before I have to kit up for class, so I can train. Loren is training with me since he wants to get top marks and maybe take down a couple of the standing Neptunes swimming records.

That night, we got to grab a couple of $1.50 40 oz Coronas and hang out with the roomies that were taking a break from studying. It was fun just hanging around the house, talking diving, talking about home and getting to know everyone. This is an intense process of being thrown into living and working with people and you tend to get close really quickly. We have taken an immediate liking to most everyone in the house and are having the time of our lives.

Day 4

We began our first official day as interns today. Since I am not particularly a morning person, I surprised myself by jumping out of bed with my alarm, ready to head to the pool for our training swim. We made ourselves a portable breakfast of fruit and yogurt and headed out into the cool morning (Cool being 75 degrees or so…it’s funny how your perspective can change so quickly.)

When Cheryl, our instructor, met us at the wet room she told us that there had been a change in plans since we had a client and that we would be going out on the boat. I am still congested from my cold that I had when I left the States so I wasn’t able to dive and Loren decided to snorkel with me instead of dive. We helped load up the boat and headed out with our client, Kiel, Peter, Will (the five master) and Robert, another intern.

Alfredo, our boat captain, took us out to Roca Elefante (Elephant Rock) which is a nice site to snorkel and dive. Cheryl, Will and the client took off on their dive and the other interns and I just putted around the boat, checking out the fish and the reef. When I got tired, I climbed back into the boat and laid out on the bow, working on my tan. I almost pinched myself as I looked around at the blue skies, bluer water and realized that THIS was my life now. Rob laughed with me when I told him this. He is from the UK and feels the exact same way.

We dove and snorkeled another site that was close to where we were and loaded up and prepared to head back to the resort. Unfortunately, the boat had other ideas and short of sputtering a little bit, refused to budge for us. We all sat around and laughed while debating who was going to have to swim across the inlet to one of the closer hotels to get help since no one bothered to bring a phone. A group of Mexicans locals came out and drove around us, all the girls laughing, screaming and catcalling at the gringo boys while Alfredo let them in on our situation. Our potential rescuers sailed away and Alfredo went to work on the boat, finally managing to pull start it to our whoops of relief.

We headed back to the classroom for a Navigation class (which is review for me) and I had a hard time keeping my eyes open for it. After a quick stop at the store, we headed home, where we got caught in an unexpected thunderstorm. Never have I seen lightning flash through the sky with such brightness and ferocity. It was truly an awesome sight to behold and Loren and I had to stop ourselves from scurrying too fast through the downpour, lest we look too much like tourists compared to the locals who carried on like it was just another normal occurrence in their every day lives.

To be continued...

Friday, December 07, 2007

Mexico is unbelievable!! We are having so much fun so far.

We arrived on Sunday and after I got my first stamp on my passport and went through customs for the first time, we were met by Mariano, who is the head instructor at Neptunes. He took us to pick up the IDC instructor, Erik, and then he dropped us off at the hotel, where they put us up for the night since our room wasn't clean yet. We found out very quickly that there is NO "quickly" in Mexico. Everything is done on manana time ( like I'll do that for you manana). One thing that Mexico teaches you is patience.

We have to walk everywhere, so it takes a little bit to get anywhere. I am going to get into good shape though!

Everyone is really nice and the locals are very willing to help our Spanish along.

More later and pictures but I have to get to the doctor to get my medical forms signed off.

Hasta luego!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Five days left! When I started my countdown, it had like 70 days on it. Now we are down to our last week and hardly seems like anytime has passed at all. We bought new luggage, have our tickets, passports and everything else ready to go.

I am so nervous! I have never really been out of the country (TJ doesn't count!) so I have no idea what to expect. Loren is Mr. World Traveler, so he is alternating between telling me to relax and telling me not to pack so many shoes!

I have given all but one of the kittens away and Travis and Jenny (our awesome awesome friends) are taking care of Bodi and the Jeep for me. They took such a load off of my mind!

I got sick over the weekend so we didn't get to do our last cold water diving trip as planned but we will have our fill of diving in a couple of days. My goals for my first two days in Mex (we don't start school until Wednesday) are to get a tan and do some diving. :)

Hasta la vista!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Burn Baby Burn

San Diego is burning again. This time is WAY worse than 2003, personally and county wide. They are predicting the fire will hit the coast by tonight. The winds have died down which is good for the firefighters but really bad for my asthma.

I'm trapped in my house because the smoke is so thick outside. Even in the house I feel like I have weights on my chest. My inhaler is holstered in my jeans and I am praying we don't have to evacuate because I can't breathe when I go outside.

We packed up yesterday and have everything staged by the door so we can leave at a moment's notice.

The Discovery Hills fire that was a couple miles away from us is 100% contained. All of Fallbrook has been evacuated and I just heard that Deer Springs Rd has been evacuated. We are on North Twin Oaks Valley, which connects to Deer Springs, so I am a little concerned about that.

I'll keep everyone updated. Please keep San Diego in your prayers! It mine not seem that bad to the people who aren't living here but this is like being in a war zone. 250,000 homes have been mandatorily evacuated and over 600 structures have been lost.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Birthday Aftermath

I had such a great birthday! Loren always makes me wait until after dinner to open my presents, so all day long I was anticipating what was in the packages on the table. His mom decorated the kitchen in a Mexican fiesta theme and baked me a triple chocolate cake. Yummmm.

After Loren got off of work, we came home and he gave me a nice bottle of wine that we took to dinner with us. I wanted to go to the Spaghetti Factory so we went there, drank our wine and had a nice dinner.

We came home and opened presents...Loren got me hot pink SCUBA fins, gloves and a hot pink SCUBA bag. Now I am completely coordinated! :)

His parents got me a gift certificate to go diving on Saturday. Since I haven't been in the water in almost two years, I am really excited that I will get to go knock the dust off of my fins before heading to Mexico. They also got me a great Mexican cookbook and a beautiful book on the ocean.

The kids all drew me pictures and Paul, Loren's little brother, made me the beautiful picture with seashells.

All in all, it was a great birthday. I missed my family terribly but I got lots of calls and messages on Myspace that made me feel better.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

So Much Going On...

Bodi had her kittens! She had them a little over a week ago. There were 5 originally (3 black ones, one dark gray tortie, and one bright orange tabby) but one the second day, Tyson decided he wanted to play and licked one of them to death. :( We were very sad. Tyson didn't know any better but he could tell I was upset with him.
We moved into Loren's parents house on Monday. With the three younger kids in the house things are a little chaotic but they are fun. We are getting so much more sleep than we have in the past because we eat our home cooked dinner and we go to bed! It's nice and relaxing.
I am helping Marty out at CVC again. It gives me something to do with my day.
59 days until Mexico! I really need to get my passport...

Sunday, September 16, 2007

So since I got fired on Thursday and since I NEVER EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER EVER plan on working in an office again, I changed the subtitle on my blog. There is no more corporate habitrail for me. Woot!!

We spent the whole weekend packing. Between the two of us, L and I have WAY too many clothes and WAY too many pairs of shoes. And since our wonderful little queen kitty, Bodi, decided to use the closet as her litterbox (oh and my bed too since I cleaned out the closet...grrr) I have so much laundry to do.

L had a dive today so after I dropped him off at the boat, I came back up and ran the yard sale. We made a whole whopping $20! I think we didn't advertise enough. We'll try again next week.

I have miraculously gotten my deposit money together so I should be able to wire the money to Mexico on Tuesday. Hopefully my equipment comes quickly so I can get some lobster diving done once the season opens.

We have two more weeks until the move into L's parents house and 77 days until we leave for Mexico. One month until my birthday!! It will be small this year because we are saving for our trip. All I want is a gift certificate for a pedicure and an Aqualung travel suitcase.

I have to go to court tomorrow so I can try and talk my way out of a red light camera ticket. I got popped for not stopping completely when I turned right on red. Hopefully throwing myself at the mercy of the courts will lower the $400 ticket.

Tuesday is dedicated to tracking down my birth certificate and getting my passport application submitted. I already have to pay extra to get it expedited. What a pain. I also have to apply at a couple other restaurants. Fun fun.

I'm sure I'll find time in between to go to the beach though. I have to wear a spring suit to surf but my board is out of the shop so I am stoked on that.

Oh and L made me put the top up on the Jeep. :( That's a sign that fall is here.

So is football!! Go Bucs! They beat the Saints today! :)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Well, I got fired today. Guess I don't have to worry about feeling overwhelmed...