Update for December 2004
Friday, December 31, 2004 - 12:45pm EST
All the preparations are under way down town for the huge party in Times Square. This will be the 100th anniversary of New Year's celebrations being held in Times Square. And the weather is warm. They estimate the crowd will be 750,000 strong by ball drop time. They were practicing things yesterday. All over the news. Today I am off from work. Since the holiday is tomorrow, we get today off. Had my eye appointment and yes I need reading glasses. I also have a slight stigmatism in my right eye which probably has been causing me the problems when I read close up. So I ordered my glasses and they should be in next week. I am actually getting 2 pair for only $200 because the frames are end of year close out frames. Fine by me. Then I walked over to my Chiropractor and got myself taken care of there. Stopped by my mailbox to get the mail and now I am home just having a bit to eat. Hope everyone has a safe and enjoyable New Year celebration tonight.
December 30, 2004 - 6:50pm EST
Over at Starbucks working on the computer. I had a very busy day at work today. Lots of things going on even though lots of people are gone. My eye sight is having some problems. Good thing I am having them checked tomorrow. Hopefully will have glasses then in a week. My eyes are really getting tired at times. Especially when I try to read my homework. Maybe it is just that the homework is Accounting which I have always disliked. And I personally have little to do with at work. Oh well. Not planning much for New Years. Hopefully a quiet day so that I can do laundry and clean the apartment. Also want to get the Christmas lights taken down and packed away since it is supposed to be 50 degrees.
Tuesday, December 28, 2004 - 7:45am EST
Have been very busy but had a nice Christmas holiday. Got some neat items from family members and a fun Harry Potter calendar and tie from the people at the UPS Store when I have my mailbox. Just home from the gym before I head into work. Figured I would take a minute or two to give you an update. And Tiffany likes me to pet her while I am trying to type. Very behind in my school right now, but we are on holiday break. Have emailed the professor to find out about any issues with my week 1 work being late. Just normal 10% penalty I think. Need to get my head back into school mode. Also, really need glasses. Can not read the printed pages very long without getting a headache. Have an eye appointment on Friday. Talked to Mom on Christmas eve and talked to my Dad too. Everyone seems well. Got a fun picture from my sister of one of her cats having fun with the holiday. She has some funny cats that do very interesting "cat" things. Got to run. With lots of people being gone for the holidays, I am doing double and triple the 2nd level support work. Much more than normal and I am having problems getting my normal work done. Better get the day started.
Friday, December 24, 2004 - 9:00pm EST
Happy holidays and Merry Christmas everyone. Had an excellent Christmas eve dinner "Cuban" style. My friend Stephen's mother (a native Cuban) likes to celebrate Christmas eve in traditional Cuban style and I was invited. We had excellent pork, chicken, and rice with beans. It was very filling. Then I am invited back Christmas Day for her "American" style Christmas dinner around 1pm. She collects fun toys that dance and sing so I took her a green frog with a Santa hat. You push it's paw and it sings Jeremiah was a Bull Frog. Starbucks closed at 8pm tonight so I helped the staff close and then came home. Have been doing some computer work and now going to watch some TV. I have my stereo on right now with Christmas tunes. Talked with both my mom and dad today. Mom & Bill is doing well in California. They are going to spend their first Christmas away from home. They are going to the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Parade this year. So they are really looking forward to that. Dad & Connie are home in Grants Pass, Oregon headed out to friends. I'm glad I was able to caught him and talk for a few minutes. They got my package just yesterday. I will see them in January when I head to Palm Springs.
Thursday, December 16, 2004 - 10:00pm EST
Over at Starbucks doing some class stuff. New class ACT529 Accounting starts up today. Looks like it is going to be a busy 6 weeks in this class. Rather quiet around here. Most of the youngsters have finished their finals. Nice to see some old friends. My friend Aram is currently working on a new restaurant. It is a whole start up thing at a Holiday Inn near by. The current vendor is being booted and since Aram has a name in the business, he is starting up on his own (with financial backers) to be the Executive Chef for the catering, banquet, walk in restaurant and room service. He is working on the business plan now. Lots of other stuff going on. Tons at work. Very busy since getting back.
Tuesday, December 14, 2004 (New Jersey)
A very busy day at work today and then I had a holiday party in the city. But I am home safely. Tiffany (my cat) would not leave me alone for several hours once I got home. The holiday party was loads of fun. It was for the Arts Project of Cherry Grove (APCG) Board of Directors.
Monday, December 13, 2004 (1 hour out) 2:45pm EST
The movie was good. Sad to be headed home but also glad to get back "home". Got lots of things to do. Tomorrow I have a holiday party at work and one in the city later that night. Just remembered that I forgot to take my pills this morning.
Monday, December 13, 2004 (33,000 feet - 2,185 miles from Newark - 4 hours out) 11:45am EST
The movie is going to be Cat Woman and since I have not seen it, guess I will watch it. Outside Temperature is -63 degrees right now. David, his fiancée and mother are all flying back to Newark. His mom was in 12F so I swapped with her so that they could all sit together. Breakfast is coming so need to shut down. Looking forward to seeing Tiffany. I am sure she will not be able to leave me alone for several days.
Monday, December 13, 2004 (Portland International Airport - gate D1) 7:25am PST
They are calling for First Class and pre-boarding. Guess I will shut down and get packed up for boarding. Bathroom break before getting on board. Off we go.
Monday, December 13, 2004 (Portland International Airport) 7:10am PST
Made it here and past security. There is a bunch of Germany teenagers here that spent the last 6 days in Portland. Looks like they are headed back home via New York. Maybe they are going to stay there for a spell because direct would be easier to fly over the pole. Well I had a good time. The weather is rain this morning at home. Hopefully it will clear and air traffic will be smooth for an on-time arrival. Just looked at weather.com and it looks good for travel to Newark. I saw David at baggage check in. He was with family members so he might be having breakfast with them before fighting his way through security. He works in Teterboro as well. He is out visiting family in Lake Oswego. We almost went to the Hockey game together on Friday but he had some family affair that evening. I think he said it was his grandparents 70th something. Not sure if it was anniversary or birthday. But the whole family was here. Will have to ask him how his visit to the Portland laboratory went. Went over to Vancouver last night. Had dinner with Edward and then we went down to the Vancouver Christmas show. Edward had a great time. And I got to say goodbye to several friends. Then after dropping Edward off, I head downtown for some fun and last minute cheer. Then home by midnight to grab the computer and pop over to Starbucks to upload last minute email to my computer and fill up the car with gas so that I would not have to do that in the morning. 5am wake up call sure was early but I have about 20 minutes now before boarding. Back to work with me. At least this is a shorter flight. And I have a nice exit row too. More leg room.
Sunday, December 12, 2004 (Portland) 10:15am PST
Good, the weather forecast for Newark has been updated and the snow advisory for tomorrow has been moved until next week. So weather looks great right now for flying into Newark. Guess we will see tomorrow. Went over to Kinko's this morning and printed my boarding pass. I got a window emergency exit row so I will have more leg room on the flight back. Should be able to work on the computer some and enjoy the flight. Forgot my spare battery so I only have the one battery. Oh well. Off to breakfast now.
Sunday, December 12, 2004 (Portland) 2:45am PST
Had a really nice time tonight. The Prince and Princess show was tonight and I saw a lot of people. Sold raffle tickets for New York. You get two complimentary nights at the Marriott Marquis Hotel (value $540), two tickets to our Night of a Thousand Gowns coronation April 2nd (value $400), and two tickets to our Out of Town Show and Victory Brunch. So it will be a real prize to the person who wins. I was selling them 1 for $5 or 5 for $20 and sold all over 40 tickets. My former Ms. Portland who I reigned with 5 years ago while Mr. Gay Portland is the newly crowned Princess Royale. She is the last of us three to make it to that level. Dawna (my Miss Gay Portland) was Princess several years ago. I became Prince for New York earlier this year so that just left Mary. It was great talking with her and reminiscing with her. Lots of people had questions about New York because a group a around 20 or so are interested in going this year. Got a breakfast date with a bunch of people in the morning. Plus I need to head up to Starbucks early and get my email and this downloaded.
Saturday, December 11, 2004 (Portland) 10:00am PST
Made it back to Portland just fine. Had a fun time in Bend with family. Flight back over was very uneventful except it took them almost a half hour to get the luggage after I got off the plane and was standing there. So did not get out of the airport until almost 2. Oh well. Had a fun night last night. The Hawks tied the Everett Silvertips in the Rose Garden. So that was fun. Mark and his new boyfriend Craig also came to the game. Judy and Lori loved seeing Mark and chatting with him. I am at Starbucks right now uploading/downloading stuff and then have a meeting with a friend over in NE Portland.
Thursday, December 9, 2004 (Bend, Oregon)
Enjoying my time here in Bend. Most of the family went to see the holiday movie Christmas with the Kranks? Think I spelled that right. It was really funny. Mom was relating to some of it because they are leaving town this year before Christmas and going to the Rose Parade in California for New Years so they will not be in Bend this year. Their outside is light in lights. That is understandable since Grandma passed away this year. No Christmas party this year either. Hey, once and a while you just have to take a break. Good for them. Otherwise the kids are all normal. Normal for them that is. Marie had finals this week and did fair on them. David burned me some music of his. Not to bad for rock. Also got to drive with Marie and David, both are rather good drivers. Andy (my youngest nephew at 13) is just Andy. Always a handful. Oh well, got to get some packing done.
Monday, December 6, 2004 (Portland International Airport) 7:45am PST
Wow, free internet access on FLYPDX from right here in the terminal. Well, close anyway. I had to go upstairs to the main level of the concourse. The downstairs United Express area does not have access. But it is close enough. Plane looks like it is on time. Weather in Bend looks like it is going to be snowing when I land. And then let up later in the day. And the forecast looks like more snow on Tuesday but turning to rain later in the week.
Monday, December 6, 2004 (Portland International Airport) 6:30am PST
Made it to the airport in better time than I thought. Worked out great. We pulled up to departures and checked my bags in at United and then pulled up to Southwest and let Howard off. His flight leaves at 7:30 while I get to have breakfast and fly out at 8:50am. Had a nice stay in Portland. Saw a few more friends last night that I had not seen. Especially since I did not go to the bar on Saturday night. Several people had heard that I was in town, so was looking for me. We enjoyed The Incredibles so much that we went to see it again yesterday. Actually the other movie we were thinking about did not start for an hour so Howard suggested we see it again. It has been raining here the last few days off and on. Normal for Portland. But now looking forward to getting over to Bend and checking things off of mom's to do list. It sure was nice having a DSL high speed internet connection in the room. When I am back next weekend, I will be back at the Days Inn which does not have high speed in the room. Oh well, it will only be for the weekend.
Monday, December 6, 2004 (Portland, Oregon) 5:00am PST
I am up and getting showered and packed to head for Bend (Eastern Oregon) this morning. It is really 8am my time but now that I have been here a few days my body says, No it is not. Yawn. Ok, must get to shower. Had a fun day yesterday. Had lunch at Izzy's (a Portland institution). Met up with my adopted nephew Edward in Vancouver. Had dinner with him and caught up on how things are going with him. Normal boy problem stuff but school is going great for him. Solid B's this term at Clark College for him. He is going to be working on Fire Island this summer as a lifeguard so I will get to see lots of him for 2 months this summer. My friend who manages the hotel is happy too. Very hard to staff that position there. Shower. Oh yeah.
Sunday, December 5, 2004 (Portland, Oregon) 9:00am PST
Had fun at the hockey game last night but we lost 0-3. Not that they did not shoot the puck well. We put up twice as many shots on goal as the Kootenay Ice did but we still lost the game. Everyone was really nice and several people came over to say hello. During the day we just went to a movie and drove around some. Nothing to earth shattering yesterday. Had a great time just driving around and seeing the sites with Howard. We both fly out tomorrow so today is get it together day. Going to ship some stuff that I bought for friends in New Jersey back to my home address later today. I know all of it will not get into the suitcase. Oh, went to Rocky Horror last night. The Cabaret were performing so a few of the people there remembered me. Others were just in awe since they had heard of me but had never met me. We stayed for about half of the film. It was fun talking with some of the newer members of the cast who were not ever born yet when I founded the Cabaret. Hard to believe that it was about 18 years ago that I did that. And it is still going strong today.
Saturday, December 4, 2004 (Portland, Oregon) 10:45am PST
Had a great time at hockey last night. Even though we lost, it was not a slacker game. The coach for the Everett team got tossed and we ran up 30 shots, but still lost 1-2. But had a fun time seeing people and being with Judy & Lori. Headed downtown after that and went out to a few bars to see some other people. During the day we rode the MAX all the way to the Expo center. Then rode it all the way to Hillsboro and back. Generally kicked back and enjoyed the day.
Saturday, December 4, 2004 (Portland, Oregon)
Happy Birthday Grandma, may you rest in peace.
Friday, December 3, 2004 (Portland, Oregon) 9:20am PST
Having a good time in Portland. Enjoyed running around yesterday. Had breakfast, got my haircut, went to the lab and did some other stuff here and there. Howard (a friend from Idaho) is hanging around with me. We went and did some shopping, had lunch and then went to see The Incredibles. It was cute. Then did some more shopping and had dinner later. Went out last night downtown and just had a nice time visiting with people and seeing friends. Some are headed to Las Vegas for the coronation there. Others I will see this weekend. The hotel is rather nice. My view looks right at Water Front Park from the 4th floor. Then again, if the fog would lift, I might be able to see more around here. Oh well. That is Portland sometimes.
Thursday, December 2, 2004 (Portland, Oregon)
I think that flight yesterday ranks among the top 5 worst flights I have ever been on. The plane was late coming into Newark because of the weather problems earlier in the day. Then they get us all boarded and we are all set to go. Oops, they have to load someone's electric wheelchair and they have problems with it. Took them over 20 minutes to load the thing while we are all on board waiting. Then we are finally pushed away from the terminal and we get to go sit in traffic to get out. At one point the pilot said we were number 12 to take off. So another 30 minutes later, we finally take off. Man, that was a very bad climb out of Newark. The wind was so strong (reported at gusts of 50 mph) that we were rocking and bumping all over the place. You could feel the plane being pushed around by the winds until we got up about 4 or 5 thousand feet. About the first 5 minutes of the flight we very interesting. After that, it was just long. Takes 6 hours of flight time going west plus the delay in Newark makes over 7 hours of being on the plane in that little cramped seat. The guy in front of me leans back and I can not even get my laptop to open to where I could see the screen. So, no computer work on the plane. And all I can do is sit there and watch the movie. Now you know why I like flying east. Much easier. You board in Portland, minimal delays out and poof, you are in the air. Then it is only 5 hours of flight time to Newark and you normally fly right in with minimal delays because you are in a priority queue because you are coming from cross country and lower on fuel than another flight from Miami. Finally got settled into the hotel after midnight Portland time.
Wednesday, December 1, 2004 (Liberty Newark International Airport) 4:30pm EST
They just announced a gate change. Guess I should pack up and head over to the new gate. Now I need to move to C-128. Oh yippee. I'll just add this note on here. The flight has been moved up. We were supposed to leave at 5:25pm but now they say we will be leaving at 5:45pm so only 20 minutes late. Not to bad. The display board shows several cancelled flights and other delayed flights. They must have known it was me. The weather is moving in outside. Nice and clear (west) one direction but cloudy and dark to the other direction (east).
Wednesday, December 1, 2004 (Liberty Newark International Airport) 4:00pm EST
Made it to the airport. Had lunch first with Stephen before heading over to the airport. The flight is delayed because the plane is delayed coming in from Portland and due to this mornings rain storm and now high winds, departure traffic is delayed. So I get an extra hour wait here. Stephen will be taking care of Tiffany while I am gone. I do not recall flying out of this gate before. I am clear at the end of C concourse at gate C-138. The last gate number is 139 so I am really at the end of the end. Got my grade back from my LAW class. Another A. I was able to hand deliver my documentation to HR today. Major burden off of my mind. This way they will process the reimbursement request so that it is paid in 2004. This is vital to me taking several classes in 2005. Lots of things going on at work. I really feel bad leaving because there are many things in the air right now. Oh well. Guess I will have to pick up the pieces when I get back. Feel sorry for Dan and Ed who are going to try and help follow through on a few things. Just discomforting. Sure I will get over it once I step on the plane. That is until I land back in New Jersey. Took my work computer home so that I could connect when I get home and get a head start on my first day back.
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