Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

It's Memorial Day and I'm here at work. Luckily I'm only working until about 2:30 or so.

I have burgers and Nathan's waiting for me to grill when I get home. That's what Memorial Day is all about right?

Well, that is one good thing about it, spending time with the family. I think we generally forget what Memorial Day really means while we're busy with our BBQ grills and having fun.

Memorial Day started as Decoration Day after the Civil War. It was a day to go and decorate the graves of the deceased so that if they were forgotten throughout the year, at least there would be one day set aside to remember them.

Take some time today to remember the fallen. Whether it's someone you've known that has passed away or a soldier you never met who has died fighting for their country. Just take a minute to think about it.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

South Africa

I like reading fiction novels. I usually get hooked on a specific author and read all their titles before moving on to the next.

I've been reading an author named Wilbur Smith over the last year or so.
He is a native of South Africa and writes what I call Historic Fiction. He uses fictional characters but in correct historical context.

His Egypt novels are what got me started. River God is a book I rank in my all-time top 5. The Taita character in these Egypt books is fabulous.

The Courtney Novels are about English seamen that settled in Colonial South Africa. We follow the family from the 15th century to the 20th century. For some reason there is a gap during the 19th century. Sean Courtney is the main patriarch of the family once they settle in South Africa. His adventures start out in The Lion Feeds.

Through reading Mr. Smith's books I have developed a great appreciation for South African history. There has seldom been a time in S.A. when there wasn't internal strife by rival groups. The most obvious being apartheid.
Recently I ran across several news articles regarding xenophobic attacks . Unabridged (v 1.1) - Cite This Source - Share This
an unreasonable fear or hatred of foreigners or strangers or of that which is foreign or strange.

This just goes to show that the climate in South Africa continues to be arduous and violent even in current times. I found it strange that these riots and attacks were not widely covered here in the U.S. Here are some links to a couple of South African news outlets if you'd like to read for your self:

Friday, May 23, 2008


I'm happy it's Friday.
I work as a trainer teaching insurance adjusters how to appraise property damage on vehicles. It's alot of fun. I really enjoy the work. I get students from all over the country coming here to learn this stuff. The coolest part is all the different personalities. I also have several cool co-workers who are great to work with. It's not often in life that you find a job that you really like. I've spend alot of time working at jobs that were fine but never before have I looked forward to going to work in the morning.

It's raining pretty good today. I live in Phoenix and we don't get alot of rain. For that reason we really love rainy days. Anytime the weather report says something other than sunny and hot we get excited. Earlier this week the highs were close to 110. Today it's only going to be 73. That's more than a 30 degree change in two days. I know 73 sound nice to most of you but today I wore my long sleeve work sheet (I only have one) and a jacket over that because I was down right cold.

If you've ever been to Phoenix you know that traffic is horrible here. Mostly due to bad drivers or rude drivers. Most people here are from somewhere else. For those reasons you don't want to drive on I-10 through downtown at rush hour when it rains. Those drivers that have lived here awhile are terrified of wet roads to they drive 25 mph on the freeway. The other half of the drivers moved here from somewhere where it rains or snows alot. Those are the worst because they drive 85 mph on the freeway at rush hour,
"This aint nothing, I'm used to driving in 2 feet of snow".
The problem becomes, due to lack of rain, when it does rain all the oil in the road floats to the top and the roads get as slick as ice. Avoid driving in Phoenix when it rains if you can.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Honey and Kids

Goodbye To Honey The Cheetah

I'm a big fan of the BBC TV show Big Cat Diary on Animal Planet. I'm not sure why but it totally fascinates me. I can't get enough of the Ridge Pride and the Marsh Pride of lions. I also like following the leopards. Most of all I enjoy the cheetahs. Especially when they show the cheetahs with cubs. The cheetah that is the biggest star of the show is Honey. The situations they've shown her involved in and her bravery, resolve, and knowledge make her a supermom. Unfortunately I recently ran across a news article announcing that Honey the cheetah has died, and not of natural causes.
When I watch the show I am always prepared that there will be animals being killed due to the harsh life they lead. I can accept that. What I don't feel good about is these animals surviving all the natural trial of their lives and then succumbing to a death at the hands of a human.
We'll miss you Honey.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Beginning

This is my first attempt at blogging. I like to tell people what I think so I should be good at this. In actuallity I started this because I am researching for someone else who is considering starting a blog. How can I give any ideas until I try it myself? So far it's been a piece of cake. I plan to just let this go and see what it turns into. So, until next time....................