Share Your World

It’s been a while since I’ve been able to join in on Cee’s Share Your World challenge. I enjoy seeing what everybody comes up with for answers to her interesting questions.

Complete this sentence: I want to learn more about … so many things! I want to learn how to really play saxaphone (I played in the school band 30 years ago, 1st chair, but I don’t consider that playing saxaphone). I want to learn more about how to play piano. I want to learn how to speak Spanish better, and how to speak Russian, and Korean, and Chinese. I want to learn more about writing- how to make interesting characters, how to make the story ‘come alive’. I want to learn more about photography- especially how to use lightroom and photoshop to their full extent. I could go on, but you get the idea. 😉

On a vacation what you would require in any place that you sleep? Number 1 thing I’m concerned with in any place I sleep is safety/security. I want somewhere I can rest without too much concern over myself or my stuff.

What is your greatest extravagance? I don’t really consider myself ‘extravagant’ in anything, but I will spend money on things I really enjoy: books, travel, music, photography.

What inspired you this past week?  Feel free to use a quote, a photo, a story, or even a combination. I’m not sure it was this week, but I don’t keep up with the news much when I’m offshore. I do remember the stories of Hurricane Harvey in Texas and the Texas Navy and Cajun Navy coming to the rescue. The stories of people coming from all over to help where they could was pretty inspiring. I hope the same is going on in Florida after Irma, but I haven’t heard.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Check out the original post and join in with your own stories. 🙂

Share Your World- Week 40

Here’s another challenge from Cee. I really like her blog. She always has something interesting going on over there (and she takes some gorgeous pictures!). One of the things she does is run a “Share Your World” challenge. Check out the link to see others answers to her questions or to join in yourself. Here’s my answering post for this weeks challenge…

If you have been to a foreign country name those you have been too? I’ve been to a lot of foreign countries (check out my previous port calls). There are still plenty I haven’t been to yet and would love to go visit at the first opportunity. I’m still looking forward to seeing India, Egypt, Chile, Vietnam, Uruguay and Antarctica (even tho it’s not a country).  I travel every chance I get!

I started out young, I went to Canada and Mexico with my grandmother. Then I got to go to school on a sailing ship. We left Athens, Greece on the ship and sailed to ports in Italy, Spain, hit the Canary Islands and crossed the Atlantic to Martinique. We left the ship and flew to Caracas, Venezuela. We traveled overland to Columbia, Ecuador, Peru and Bolivia. I joined the same ship again in Martinique. We sailed to the Azores, then France, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, the USSR and back to Copenhagen (Denmark).

After that trip I was hooked on traveling. I’ve since been to the UK (England, Ireland, Scotland). I’ve been to Turkey, the UAE, Oman, Bahrain, Mauritius, Angola, Congo, Solomon Islands, Kiribati, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Thailand, Laos, Singapore, Honduras, Belize, Nicaragua, Costa Rica.

Is the glass half empty or half full? What type of glass is it and what is in the glass? I have to admit, I am a natural pessimist. I almost always see the glass as half empty. I will say, I’ve never really thought about what kind of glass it is. I would say it’s probably a beer glass. One of those hour glass shaped ones they give you at the beer joint. And of course, BEER would be in the glass!

If you could have an endless supply of any food, what would you get? I would get a burger. I LOVE a good burger and there are so many ways to make them!

List:  List at least five places worth shopping. I’m not much of a shopper, I usually only really enjoy shopping for books and food. 🙂 I like shopping at AmazonSmile, a (small) percentage of everything I spend there goes to a charity I choose. I also liked to shop at Powells Books in Oregon (tho I haven’t been able to get there for ages). I like Half Price Books on the way to Houston. I like to ‘shop at the Goodwill and Salvation Army stores. They have lots of interesting things and decent prices. I go there when I’m looking for furniture or appliances for my properties, or for work clothes. I also like to shop at museum stores, I almost never buy anything, but they always have beautiful and interesting items for sale.

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up. I am grateful to have a job, but I am SO looking forward to getting off this ship and going home!!

Share Your World

I always like to see Cee’s interesting questions and answers for her Share Your World Challenges. She also has some really great photography challenges going on every week. Here’s my response to the challenge for week 27.

What is your favorite month of the year? I really had to think about this one for a while. It depends on my location. Here’s my perspective from living in SE Texas. I really don’t like the summer months. From May until at least September, it’s just too damn hot, muggy and buggy (pesky mosquitos!) to enjoy being outside at all. The winter months from November- February are’nt usually too cold, but then we have a lot of really dull, dreary, rainy, and still muggy weather. The days when the Northers have blown through and the skies are clear and bright blue and the air is fresh and crisp are beautiful, but there aren’t enough of them.

I do like the fall, the weather is starting to cool off again where it’s nice to spend time outside and there’s Halloween to look forward to. I also love March-April. The weather is still cool, the air is fresh and clean, the plants are all starting to grow again and I look forward to checking my ‘garden’ every morning. I look forward to seeing the flowers start blooming. Lots of my neighbors let the bluebonnets take over their yards.Texas wildflowers are just stunningly beautiful in the Spring! I guess my favorite month would have to be March. For all the reasons I mentioned for spring, AND we have St Patricks Day to celebrate in Surfside! 🙂

Irish pirates

Irish pirates

Do you drink coffee at all? I’m not a big fan of coffee. I don’t really see what the big deal is all about. I can’t understand the admiration for all the expensive, fancy drinks at places like Starbucks. I almost never drink coffee at home, I usually wake up and have a cup of hot tea and then drink iced tea all day long. When I’m on the ship, I’ll drink coffee. Just because it’s there.

What was one of your first moneymaking jobs (other than babysitting or newspaper delivery)? I worked for my father around his rental properties and on the boat. He paid me $3 per hour. He’d have me clean up between tenants, paint, plumbing (unclogging sinks and toilets), pulling weeds and taking care of the plants, etc. During school breaks, he would take me out fishing with him and I would cut bait, bait the hooks and help gut and ice down the fish. I got out of that as soon as I could!

My first ‘real’ job was down the street on the party boats. I got hired on as a ‘galley girl’. I could only go out on the weekends. We made 2 trips a day. I would tend the galley selling drinks and microwave sandwiches. When nobody was interested in food, I would help the deckhands baiting hooks, cutting bait, untangling lines, getting fish off hooks and putting them up on the ice for the passengers til we got to the dock. Then we would filet the fish for tips and clean up the boat at the end of the day and get it ready to go out again in the morning. I had another job washing dishes at a little Greek restaurant down the street after school too. I kept busy. 😉

We lived across from Dons Dock on the finger bay.

We lived across from Dons Dock on the finger bay.

List:  If you play video/computer games list 5 games you like? I don’t play many games on the computer. I’m not very good at games where you have to be quick. 😉 I do like a couple of them. One of my all time favorites is a game I used to play with the crew on one of my old ships ‘the Performer’. If I remember right, it was called VGA Planets. It was cool. The goal was to ‘take over the universe’. You chose which alien race you wanted to play as. Each one had its own special abilities. You started out from your home world with certain assets. So many spaceships, so much population, so many cities, etc. You chose a strategy to carry out your goal of conquering the universe. Trade or war, shifting alliances with the other players, etc. It would take us a day or so between moves when the controller would roll over the computer so we could make our next move. A game would usually last an entire hitch (maybe more). We worked 5 weeks on, 5 weeks off there. 😉

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? I’ve been on the ship at work since the end of May, so not a lot happening with my life here. I am grateful to still have a job since so many in this industry have been laid off already with the plunge in the price of oil. I’m grateful that this type of work allows me more time off than most so I can spend time doing the things I really enjoy. I’m looking forward to getting off here soon (tho not as soon as next week) and attending a blogging workshop in Costa Rica. I’ll spend a couple of weeks exploring down that way after the class.

Share Your World

Here’s another Share Your World post thanks to Cee’s Photography Blog.

What did you or did not like about the first apartment you ever rented? I liked that it was cheap and convenient. The rent was only $80/month for a little efficiency. It was close to where I was working. It was close to everything I needed so I could walk everywhere or ride my bike (I didn’t have a car). I didn’t like that I was renting it from my father and he would come over every morning to bang on the door, wake me up and yell at me to “turn off the damn AC, you’re running up the bills!”. It was only one room, a kitchen and living/bedroom all together. The only privacy was a small bathroom. I was just so glad to have a place of my own, even if it was only just across the street from my dad’s.

my dads house was on the 1st finger bay, straight line from the bridge and a little to the right

my dads house was on the 1st finger bay, straight line from the bridge and a little to the right

What kind of art is your favorite? Why? Oh wow, that’s a HARD question to answer! I like so many different kinds of art. Drawing, painting, photography, music, dance, ceramics, pretty much anything creative. I love different styles of music: latin, reggae, folk, bluegrass, blues, classical. I love different styles of painting: surrealist (Salvador Dali`), fantastic, or super-realistic. I love photography, especially astro-photography and macro (and wish I could take those kinds of pictures!). Why? I don’t really know why. I just do. So, a VERY hard question to answer. I guess I just can’t choose just one!

How many siblings do you have? What’s your birth order? I had one brother and one sister originally. My sister died when she was 17. I’m the oldest. Then my parents remarried and I got a few stepbrothers and sisters. They’re all older than me. My stepfather had 4 sons and 1 daughter. A couple of his sons lived with my mother for a while, but I never spent much time over there and after they moved in I spent even less. My fathers girlfriend (I call her my stepmother to make it easier) had 2 sons and 1 daughter. I never really spent much time with any of my stepbrothers or sisters. I moved away from home pretty much for good when I was barely 17 and haven’t kept in touch.

Complete this sentence:  I’m dreaming of a white …. (and no you can’t use Christmas as your answer). … sandy beach with clear, light blue water lapping at the shore while I sit under the shade of the palms sipping umbrella drinks. 🙂

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? I’m grateful to have a job when so many in my industry are getting run off every day now. I’m looking forward to finding out when I can get off this ship and go home. I’m looking forward to learning my schedule so I can plan my vacation! I’m looking forward to spending my vacation in Costa Rico learning how to blog better and exploring Central America. 🙂

Share Your World- Week 17

I’ve got a couple of hours layover in Paris and access to the Air France lounge, so I decided to answer Cee’s Share Your World Challenge for Week 17, 2015. She always has interesting questions and I enjoy reading her answers and the answers that other bloggers come up with.

So, I’ll add my 2 cents and hope it will entertain some of you as well. 😉

 What is your most favorite smell/scent? I’ve never really thought about it. Some I really like are: the scent of fresh snow on the air when it’s crisp and clear outside (we don’t get that much here in South Texas!), the fresh and salty sea breeze far out to sea, the smell of cinnamon rolls baking in the oven, I love to smell all of those things, they usually mean good things are coming my way! 🙂

Do you prefer long hair or short hair for yourself? Short! I used to have long hair when I was younger, but the last time I grew it long was when I went back to school a few years ago. I let it grow all the way down to my butt. It was beautiful (I’m a natural redhead). As soon as I went back to work, I found out that it was a mistake to have long hair. It was SO hard to keep it neat. It would constantly get in my face. I HATE it when my hair gets in my eyes! I’d have so much trouble with snarls. As soon as I got off that hitch I had it all whacked off. I’ve kept it pretty much shoulder length since then.

Do you plan out things usually or do you do them more spontaneous (for example if you are visiting a big city you don’t know?) I guess I’m kind of in between on this one. If I’m traveling to someplace new, I like to  look through the guidebooks and the internet to get a good idea of what there is to see and do in a place. Then, I’ll make a (long) list in my head of all the things I REALLY want to see or do, along with all the things I find interesting and would check out if I have the time. I almost never stick to the plan when I arrive!

I do like to find a place to stay for the first night or two. I’ll go online and book a place, usually somewhere very easy to get to from the airport. I like to have a little time to get over the jet lag and find my bearings in a new place.

When I get out and start exploring, I find so many other things that I never found out about in my ‘research’. I meet people and they’ll tell me about all sorts of cool things: great local restaurants and bars, small museums, local hangouts, etc.

What is your favorite outdoor activity? My favorite thing to do is traveling, but not sure that counts as a strictly outdoor activity. After all, it includes a lot of eating, drinking, shopping, exploring museums and other tourist attractions, etc so I don’t want to count is as an ‘outdoor’ activity/

Hard to decide between hiking, sailing and SCUBA diving! I love hiking around and exploring beautiful country, but I’m fairly lazy and like to be comfortable. I don’t like carrying around anything more than a small fanny pack. I love to SCUBA dive, but it’s so hard for me to do now a days. I have to rent the gear and spend a few hours (minimum) going somewhere decent to dive. So, sailing beats out the other 2!

I joined a local meetup group called Sail La Vie a couple of years ago. Since I joined, I’m able to go sailing just about any weekend I want. I don’t need to have a boat or pay for any of the associated expenses. They go sailing out of Kemah, which is still a little over an hour away and it would be better if it was closer, but a couple of hours wasted on the road is a small price to pay for a nice long sail out on the bay!

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? I’m grateful that I was finally able to get off that ship (I worked an extra week!). I’m looking forward to some down time at home. I’m really looking forward for just a chance to spend some quiet time at home. Time to spend catching up with friends and projects around the house.

I have lots of projects to catch up on, things like finishing up my taxes (I got an extension), working on the garden (whacking down some of the overgrown weeds taking over my yard), working on my photography, going to another painting class or two, etc. I might even get around to cleaning the house! 😉

I’m really looking forward to getting home and some sleep! 🙂

Share Your World- Week 4

Here’s another one of Cee’s Share Your World challenges. She always has such interesting stuff on her blog. Not only these Share Your World challenges, but lots of different photography challenges and other interesting stuff. Here are my answers to this weeks questions…

Where did you live at age five?  Is it the same place or town you live now? I don’t remember exactly where we lived when I was 5. I remember we moved around a lot back then. My dad was doing contract work as an engineer for different companies. He would travel around from job to job. We lived in a cab-over camper on the back of a pickup truck. My mom, my dad, my brother, me, our dog and our cat. 🙂 We lived in lots of different places, all around the country (New York, Arizona, California, Iowa, etc). We didn’t settle down until I was about 6. That was in Florida, West Coast, near St-Pete/Clearwater.

No, it’s not the same place I live now. I moved here to Texas (Lake Jackson) when I was just barely 17. I wanted to go to school to get my USCG licenses so I could become a ship captain. This town had one of only 3 programs in the country at that time that you could go for only 2 years and come out with something really useful. I didn’t have the money for a 4 year program and wasn’t really into spending that much time in school anyway. Turns out, I did spend that much time in school, and more. It took me 5 years to finish the 2 year program. At least I was able to work after the 1st year! That wouldn’t have been the case if I had gone to the 4 year schools. Now, there are a few other programs around the country. They offer pretty much the same thing I went through, but you come out in MUCH better shape! They give you a LICENSE now instead of just an AB ticket!!

You are invited to a party that will be attended by many fascinating people you never met.  Would you attend this party if you were to go by yourself? Yes, of course I would!

Did you grow up in a small or big town? Did you like it? I grew up in a medium size town, tho it felt small. I grew up in Madeira Beach, FL. Johns Pass to be specific. It was part of the Tampa-St Petersburg area, all of the towns ran together so it was really one large town or small city. Johns Pass was very much like a small town in itself. We had a real community. Everybody knew everybody and all their business. Everything you needed was there. We had a grocery store, hardware store, a 5 and dime, a few tourist shops, a few mom and pop motels on the beach, a laundromat, a few restaurants, quite a few bars, the Charter Boat center where a lot of people worked, the party boat docks, a couple of ice houses, and fuel docks for the fishermen, even an aquarium with dolphins and sharks until they tore the old bridge down and ‘remodeled’ the whole place.

my dads house was on the 1st finger bay, straight line from the bridge and a little to the right

my dads house was on the 1st finger bay, straight line from the bridge and a little to the right

the Old Johns Pass Bridge

the Old Johns Pass Bridge

Everything was within walking distance. School was about 3 miles away and there was another shopping center over there. If you needed anything else, you could catch the city bus and it would take you anywhere you needed to go. Yes, I really did like it, I miss how it was then, it’s changed a lot. It’s really nothing but a tourist attraction now. Just condos and tourist shops. They destroyed the entire community when they built that new bridge and replaced all the fisherman’s homes with shops selling cheap trinkets. I don’t like it at all, what it has become. It’s a real shame. 🙁

The New Johns Pass, "#1 tourist attraction in Pinellas County."

The New Johns Pass, “#1 tourist attraction in Pinellas County.”

We lived across from Dons Dock on the finger bay.

We lived across from Dons Dock on the finger bay.

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up? I used to want to be a doctor (I think I was influenced by my grandmother- she was a pharmacist). Then, I figured out that I really don’t like sick people all that much, so I decided to be a veterinarian. That lasted until I was shipped off to high school to sail around the world on the traditional square-rigged sailing ships. That did it, I decided to become a ship captain. I wanted to sail around the world and get paid for it. I’ve been sailing ever since and FINALLY got my Master Mariners ticket only a couple of years ago. 🙂

Ariadne, one of the ships I got to sail on for high school

Ariadne, one of the ships I got to sail on for high school

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? I’m grateful that I got to spend some good quality time with my best friend. I brought over a pot of stew and we had a couple of hours of good conversation. 🙂 I’m looking forward to one more Icicle Race on this coming Saturday!

Share Your World

Here’s another challenge from Cee’s Photography blog. I only manage to stumble on her posts every once in a while. I’m not sure why. Maybe I need to check into my reader a lot more often. I have a hard time keeping up with everything online tho.

Today I saw another of her Share Your World posts and so I’m going to do it. 😉

Given the choice of anyone in the world, whom would you want as a dinner guest? I guess this means someone still alive? Someone real? That’s a hard one! My first choice would be God. If there really is one, I would really love to have a conversation- in person- and not have to wait til I’m dead! But, since that is apparently out of the question, I’ll have to pick somebody else.

There are SO many interesting people out there, people that I’ll probably never get to meet. I’d love to meet some of the great explorers/adventurers, like Sylvia Earle, Robert Ballard, Jessica Watson, Max Hardberger, Elon Musk (explores new things!), etc.

But I think I would most like to meet Jeff Berwick, the Dollar Vigilante. I would LOVE to talk to him about what’s going on in the world. How to escape from all the CRAP, and just find a way to enjoy life. Find a way to escape the traps set for all of us here in the US and get OUT! Find a way to avoid being used and abused and live MY life on MY terms! Yeah, I think Jeff would be my #1 choice for a dinner guest. 🙂

When did you last sing to yourself? To someone else? I sing to myself (usually along with the radio) all the time. Last time was yesterday while I was driving back from the grocery store. To someone else? I used to do karaoke a lot. That was probably the last time I sang to someone else (the audience). It was a while ago. I haven’t had the time to go out much lately. Probably over a year ago now.

If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one quality or ability, what would it be? The ability to eat anything I wanted and stay a ‘normal’ weight. I gained a lot of weight very quickly when I was a kid (still really can’t figure out why), and ever since I have tried everything I can think of to lose it. I can never manage to stick to any kind of diet for more than 2-3 months since they never seem to give me results anywhere near the amount of effort I put in (diet and hours of exercise). I know how I am supposed to eat, I just don’t like eating that way. I don’t like ‘healthy’ food, I like junk food. I can’t imagine spending my whole life just eating things I hate, forcing myself to be miserable every day, all day long. I’m not that sorry about the fact that I’m fat. But if I could have ANY ability, that would definitely be the one I would pick.

What, if anything, is too serious to be joked about? I can’t really think of anything. I think humor is a good way to deal with most things. Even most ‘serious’ things. The latest outrageous attack on free speech (Charlie Hebdo) is a good example. “Terrorism” is serious, right? I think one of the best ways to fight it is to ridicule it. Or ignore it. Either way works for me. But since ‘our’ leaders have decided NOT to ignore it and instead take away OUR freedoms, then I think humor is going to be the more effective way to deal with it.

Bonus question:  What are you grateful for from last week, and what are you looking forward to in the week coming up? I’m grateful I got home from work. Safe and sound. No pirates, no ebola, no injuries on the ship, no delays at the airport, no lost luggage, no issues with the rental car. ALL good. I found out last week about the “Icicle Races” and I’m looking forward to going sailing next weekend. 🙂