Tuesday, August 25, 2009

"Oh By The Way"

Deb cringes anytime I start a conversation with "Oh By The Way" - Dunno why.

I have a project coming up in South Florida soon. Late this past Friday afternoon I decided to make a quick trip on Monday to check things out in person. Too many questions. Too much design guesswork & I needed answers. Unfortunately, I didn't think much about work once I left the office. Late Saturday, as my mind drifted into "idea mode", I hit Deb with "Oh By The Way", I gotta go check somethin' out. Wanna go with me on a quick road trip? C'mon let's pack a bag & get goin'." (I came up with 300 reasons why this was a totally brilliant idea. I keep a Rolodex of these things handy & Deb, after all these years, already knows I'm an impulsive, but good-natured, nutcase.)

Took about an hour to get everything ready to roll. No big deal. Really. (Hint: I don't do the packing.) I did collect the mail.

We jumped onto I-95, set the cruise control, shut off the cell phone & chatted our way south. Everything was going along swimmingly - 'til the A/C blitzed out.

Me - "Oh well, no big deal. Can't get it fixed on the weekend anyway so we'll hafta put the windows down."
Deb - "What about my hair?"
Me - "Put a hat on. I got a new Nike hat in the back seat."
Deb - "I'm not wearin' a stupid baseball hat."
Me - "Gonna be awfully hot. Already 92 degrees. Hey - is that sweat on your upper lip?" (Quickly pointed to the thingy that shows outside temp, direction & (gulp) gas mileage, while handing her the dark blue hat. The sweat comment clearly didn't have the desired effect.)
Deb - (Somewhat disgustedly) "This doesn't even match." (Duh. Pastels just ain't me.)
Me - (sigh) "Gonna be awfully hot. Up to 93 now. Still have 2 hours to go." I reach for the window button.
Deb - (Grumbling) "Okay okay, but don't put the windows down 'til I fix my hair & get this stupid hat on."
Me - "Fix your hair? Uh.... Never mind. Just tell me when. I can drip for a little while longer."

It only took 5 minutes for Deb to find the whatchamacallit for tying her hair back, fishing the "pony tail" through the hat & getting it placed just right. No big deal. Nothin' a coupla quarts of Gatorade couldn't fix, though the thought of an IV did cross my mind.

Finally, we cruised into Boca Raton to find our hotel.

We pulled into a small park along the intracoastal waterway so Deb could take some pictures. While she snapped away, I opened the hood & pretended to be looking for the A/C problem. (Like I could EVEN figure that out.) 10 minutes later, we were on the road again..... & the A/C was miraculously working.
Deb - "You fixed the air conditioning!"
Me - "Yep!"
Deb - "But how?"
Me - "Oh, I don't wanna go explainin' all that technical stuff - it's all kinda complicated. You know, all those hoses n' wires n' stuff." (I won't seem so heroic after Deb reads this, but, it was really cool being THE MAN.)

BTW - Nice back yards huh???

On the way home we cruised A1A. I blogged about A1A a few months back (go look it up!). If we stay on that road, it'll take us home, though we'd have to cross lots of bridges & causeways. The speed limits also tend to be annoying - no match for my driving style. This is Palm Beach. Big houses. Big money. Puny waves.

Wonder why they call it Palm Beach? Could it be the trees? Hope the bug guts don't show up in this picture. Tough doin' that windshield photography stuff while drivin', drinkin' Starbucks coffee, & talkin' on the phone. (Just kiddin' - Deb takes the pics for this blog.)

The highlight of our latest 'road trip' was a visit to Sebastian Inlet. The last time I visited this place I was 12 years old & I spent a whole week of my young life fishing & shrimping with my dad. That trip ranks as one of my top 10 childhood memories. [It was an emotional kind of visit - my dad passed away 6 years ago almost to the day of this trip.] But forget the nostalgic meanderings of an old guy - This place is awesome. Deb just about overloaded the memory card. Good thing she always carries more than one camera.

Now anyone that reads my stuff knows that the kids in my book(s) are surfers. Like these kids.

Ever see such a crowded beach?

Can't wait 'til my grandson Jack does this stuff. (Uh, my real-life grandson.)

He could get started now. Like this little guy. I could teach 'im in about 2 hours.

This lil' squirt went all the way out into the big surf with the older kids. Couldn't catch him riding - the light was fading.

When the scenery turned ugly - we headed for home. I don't know what these are, but they're ugly. Don't these birds make ya feel like eatin' a Vlasic Pickle?


Rebecca Ramsey said...

Awesome post. Sounds like a great trip-especially after you fixed the AC!
Now I want a pickle. At 8:02 AM.

careann said...

A little impulsiveness once in a while keeps life interesting, doesn't it? It's great to see all that gorgeous scenery. Especially love those rocks and wild waves (one of my absolute favourite subjects for painting). Hubby and I will be doing a little travelling of our own next week with camera in hand so will hope to have pics to share, too. Maybe I should hunt for a colour-coordinated baseball cap to take along. ;)

Joylene Nowell Butler said...

You should have been a photographer. Oh, and you should give Deb a big fat medal. A diamond would probably do.

Great post, Mr. Dave!

JaxPop said...

Becky - It was a great trip. The whirlwind tour. After South Florida - might be doing a job in the Carolinas - either Panther Mountain SC or Asheville NC. I've never tried Carolina BBQ. Pickles at 8AM? Blech!

Careann - Ah... Impulsiveness. My enemy & friend. I once traded a car in (Deb's) for a new one in the middle of a 'road trip'. Wasn't my brightest move. Oh & take the hat for back-up - but not cammo (sp?). Post trip pics!

Joylene - Deb is THE photographer. Almost all of the pics on my blog are her photos. She's got an eye for it (& the patience). Check out the pics from earlier posts - like the manatees & peacocks. I'll definitely put her name in for a medal - maybe a purple heart. Deb was laughing last night after she read this post & said "All of your blogs (posts) are crazy, but they're always totally true! We must be really nuts!"

My reply - Hah! Ya think???

Horror with Heart said...

Ummm, Vlasik pickles.
And oh, by the way, nice blog.

writerjenn said...

Love how you fixed the air conditioning. :-)

JaxPop said...

Keith - Looks like your reviews are good. Keep up the good wor.

Jenn - Wish I could have the same dumb luck with my lawn irrigation. I messed something up when I shut it down, which has made for an annoying Sunday afternoon.

Sean B. and Mary B. said...

You know, I can totally hear that conversation between you too. You write exactly like you talk. LOL! Poor Deb and her hair. What's a girl to do? She is always prepared for any occasion though. I need to take lessons from her. ;) Keep up the great blogs Dave, they are always good for putting a smile on my face when I read them.

JaxPop said...

Ah.... a visit from the real live ghost hunters Sean & Mary. Now that you've gone all national - can't believe you stopped by. Will be cool to see you guys on TV. Added some EMF & Digital Thermometers in the upcoming book. Thanks for the tutoring.

Yeah - Deb n' her hair. Nuff said.

careann said...

Just returning for a moment to repeat what I posted on Joylene's blog, that I think you're a very worthy recipient of the Kreativ Bloggers Award, so congratulations!! I always look forward to your keen observations, humor and excellent photos (Deb's photos?). I keep checking and hoping for new posts (hint, hint!). ;)

JaxPop said...

Careann - I really really really appreciate the kind words. To think I was going to close up shop. I'm just so swamped with stuff lately & more travel coming up soon. Promise I'll post something soon. (Actually, I was going to post something serious & writing related. Y'all would hit the delete button!)

Joylene - Thanks again.

I never got a blogger award before!

careann said...

The delete button? Never! I'm always interested in thoughts from a fellow writer, so write on.