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Within the week, I may well be hopping on board the USNS LEROY GRUMMAN. It's a Fleet Oiler, meaning that its job is to refuel Navy ships when they're underway; taking a wild guess, I'd say that means I'm going to the Gulf.

In other news, I have been getting many, many books that I like, but I can't find the DVD of Megas XLR for love or money! This could be a subtle hint for anyone watching.

How are you all doing?
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Update, at last!

Greetings, True Believers!

This weekend may not have seen anything happen in my job, but I did Other Stuff instead! My many used books, once lost on the bus, have returned into my life due to diligent seeking, huzzah! ...And I bought six more. I'm hooked on books as if it was cocaine, I swear... Crossing the river into Portsmouth (Did I mention the ferry is actually a paddle-boat?), I proceeded to wander about. I found places of grand and marvelous foodery, such as the Old Town Bakery that had GREAT She Crab Soup and corned beef hash. This was both nummy and good, with much in the way of cheapness! While on the subject of food, later I did find myself wandering into a charmingly interesting place called the Bier Garden, a pleasant and delightful Mom & Pop place that smelled a mite funny, but had most excellent delectables. Sadly, I found myself unable to get past the appetizer (Schnitzel bites with mushroom gravy) due to previous eating- My eyes were MUCH bigger than my stomach that time!-, but I packed up my tender Schwein Braten and spaetzle, along with some apfel strudel on the side, and decided to have that for lunch today.

Setting the Wayback Machine to a few hours before that, I had just started to think about Christmas presents. Of course, by "think about" I mean "Said rude things about everyone advertising for Christmas before Thanksgiving's happened, then buying Grandma a Really Cool Present on the spur of the moment and setting ones for Aunt Liane, Aunt Julie, Sister Megan, and Beloved Mama on layaway," but no worries. I think all will like what I picked out for them; I'm GOOD at spur-of-the-moment that way. Also, I formulated Cunning Plans for what to get Uncle Dave and our esteemed Grandpa Don, though I may want to doublecheck with Uncle Dave as to a possible preferable option. A bit unsure about that one. ANYWAY, what I have in mind for our good Clif is not just cunning; it is a plan chock full of rich, nourishing EVIL! And he'll hate the fact that he loves it. MINE IS AN EVIL LAUGH!


Considering further, it struck me with gentle sadness that I was entirely unsure what to get the Cousins. I gradually realized a few years back that I didn't know who Shaun, Brent, Aaron, Brian, and even Bradley were anymore; we'd just grown apart so much, and that's a shame. It's pretty likely they don't know me either, so I guess we're even on that level, but really, that just means we all lose out, doesn't it? Darby I don't really know either, but as we've only met two, three times in our lives that's okay. Oddly enough, though, I feel I've got slightly more of a handle on who Darby is than any of the other male Redfords of my generation; I don't have the memories of the past that had been fogging up my eyes, I suppose. So Cousins all, send me your wish lists, all right? I'd really like to know; hey, might even mean some understanding to boot. It's surprising what you can tell about someone from their wants.

Corbin and Brittan, of course, I know completely, despite never having seen them in person, EVER. It is apparent to any eye that they are, in fact, tiny adorable DOOMgoblins that secretly plan to take over the world through the power of their appalling cuteness! ALL HAIL THE TWINS, RULERS OF EARTH! ...Yes, I DO believe in sucking up now so that I don't get the axe. They're family; what's wrong with that?

I do believe that's enough for one post, my people. Until next time, buh-dee-buh-dee-buh-dee,

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Gentles all!

My people, I pray thee, do not think I have forgotten! Your kind words and loving support are a rock upon which I can ever lean!

...The sad fact is, folks, my life hasn't been anything to report about recently. The greater part of my day is spent sitting in a room, staving off boredom through conversation, movies, my laptop, and books. Nearly everything worth mentioning happened to me today, which is often the way it goes!

Ladies and gentlemen, I now have an official BROWN passport. That's right, all! Not only do I have the blue one all you non-me people are using, but I have a brown one as well, showing that I travel on guv'mint business or some such! (Of course, I think the military are supposed to get the snazzy red ones, but I digress.))

Also, I finally got over a bloody horrawful issue with banks, and am now free to open a new account with new people! I'm thinking either the Navy Federal Credit Union or Wells Fargo, or maybe just somebody local. You know how these things go; it's all about convenience. Wells Fargo does seem to be a good way to go, though...

Also, I finally managed to find and check out downtown Norfolk, Waterside and Portside. Interesting places! Kind of like a huge three-story enclosed mall for the most part, along with a cheap ferry to the other sode of the river with more stuff. Worth wandering around in, but not to go to all the time; it's no Embarcadero, know what I mean?

Sadly, that is the extent of my activities to date.


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Much of a muchness happening!

This weekend I set forth on a journey.

A journey of terrible DOOM!

I, a man about New Jersey, found it meet to head over to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire. Unfortunately, my easiest option, that of renting a car for a day or two, proved to be untenable; who knew that there existed places that didn't accept cash? But nay, cards of credit did they hunger for, to put our stalwart hero into "The System." Instead, he cried out "Nay! Thou shalt not gain ME so easily!" and kept himself wisely away from these cards; while there may have been a slight aspect of "His expenditures would likely far outstrip his paycheck in short order, so best not to touch" in there as well, but noble rebelling against custom still!

Instead, the staunch protagonist found it meet to use public transportation; trains being the option of choice. Sadly, this entailed going north clear up to Newark, roughly a two hour ride, in order to go south and west another three hours in order to hit Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. Woe for the state of public transportation! Furthermore, due to bizarre snafuing, our befuddled and confusticated Kyle wound up in Atlantic City for a while, wandering about and beholding things. Upon his return to Philadelphia, he ended up 'sleeping' upon a bench waiting for the train to get to Lancaster, which had an apparent public-transport lock on it by the horrid Amtrak! They only ran trains there every four hours, and not all that many trains either!

Finally, at 9 in the morning on Sunday, I was able to board and head to Lancaster in good order. Arriving in Lancaster, I quickly surmised that the PA Renfaire counted as properly being "In the middle of bloody nowhere." Having to take an expensive taxi ride there, I made it on time and proceeded to have good cheap fun, my pocketbook beginning to run rather low at this point. The Tartan Terrors were a crew that I fully intend to get CD's of later, as I do for the Rakish Rogues! Sadly, the Sultry Sirens of Sin didn't live up to their hype. The Belles of Bedlam in Cali are much, MUCH better. Bardic Wind, on the other hand, was exceedingly cool!

Getting back proved to be exceedingly tricky, as at that point I essentially had enough to get back TO Lancaster, or enough to get back FROM Lancaster; I managed to solve this by a combination of walking, stubbornness, and finally getting a cab after walking enough. The train situation was fairly simple to handle... save for the fact that I, a sleepy individual, ended up 3 towns farther than I had meant to go, and had to get another taxi back to the hotel due to the next train arriving at 1 in the morning (A good 2, 3 hours away) Arriving back, I crashed.

Monday began our learning about forklift trucks, all book work then. Interesting things, such as the difference and placements of a diesel forktruck versus an electric fork truck. But really, mainly boring past the little forktruck toys they let us play with. Today, on the other hand... I actually got to drive a forklift properly! Pinpoint pivot turns, loading and stacking fake bombs, all sorts of fun! They say that driving a forklift is like driving a bike... I assure you, entirely different when the steering wheels are on the back. Curious and interesting, with a test come tomorrow. Have fun, All!
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I am not yet dead!

This weekend, I had many plans. Instead of going through with them, I did something else entirely! That's right, I DID SOMETHING ELSE. I went to New York and had potato skins at the Carnegie Deli! Booya!!!

This week, we have ceased to be at Fire School properly. For this and next week, every day we commute to Fire School, then grab a van and commute further to Naval Weapons Station Earle. This week, it's Ordnance Handling Equipment, featuring much study at hotel and in class. Much to be learned and remembered, and in all cases is it made clear... DO NOT DROP THE BOMBS! This is vital and important. I've been learning how to use hand trucks, carry forklifts from one ship/place to another, and mess about with all sorts of slings and carries. Replenishing a Navy ship midway is what this has all been about! Though I might wish to go into their oceanic research or medical ships instead.

Next week, it's Mechanical Handling Equipment, driving forklifts instead of lifting them. This will be key, most likely! And as it shall certify me in forklifts, this calls for a huzzah!




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Although the name Kyle causes an active mind and a restless urge to explore new ideas, we emphasize that it causes an unscrupulous, materialistic approach that frustrates higher humanitarian qualities. This name, when combined with the last name, can frustrate happiness, contentment, and success, as well as cause health weaknesses in the solar plexus and reproductive organs.

The name of Kyle creates a very aggressive and independent nature, one with big ambitions, giving you original, progressive, large-scale ideas, salesmanship and promotional ability as well as the excellent business judgment which enables you to gain the financial accumulation to which you feel entitled. You have a versatile, restless nature, and could do any job well, although you would not like to do menial tasks. You are seldom satisfied and are always seeking something new.


In any case, my weekend was a time of propping foot up and reacquainting myself with the Internet and Top Ramen! A common but overrated combination, I would say. As of today, we began work on relearning basic firefighting, the MSC way! It's a bit more in-depth than last time, and I will need to shave off my luxurious whiskers before tomorrow, but hey, I'm getting money, and that makes all the difference!

Besides, I can always grow them back.

Today was mainly book-work, the many types of extinguishers shown in diagrams and the Fire Tetrahedron (Who took over from the now-retired Fire Triangle, who is vacationing with its cousin the Bermuda triangle at the moment), featuring the new base of the fire pyramid: Chemical Reaction! We spoke of Aqueous Film-Forming Foam, its advantages and weaknesses compared to water, dry chemicals of various sorts, and of course the classic Carbon Dioxide. The most preferred for electronics, due to lack of residue!

And tomorrow we'll be using all of these all day. Huzzah?
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*Does the New-Laptop Dance Of Dignified Joy...Badly*

Ladies, Gentlemen, and Others,

I HAVE A LAPTOP! I am actually typing this on MY NEW LAPTOP, which I have christened "Thudredid." I'm betting that nobody knows where that came from without having to research it extensively. But Thudredid and I should be very happy together for some time to come, and I am very VERY happy!

In other news, I successfully shot up my shipmates with Simunition, which is more or less paintball/BB ammo scaled for actual Berettas and 12-gauge pump-action shotguns. I had a great deal of fun, then on successive days worked in and more often cleaned out a carpenter shop to earn my daily bread.


Thank you.
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First week of training!

The first week has ended, and I'm mostly intact! This is the only week that will lack S&Q for lack of reason, and I've been budgeting so that it shouldn't be an issue. I have also gotten several shiny new certificates and learned more about the job I'll be doing!

Sadly, I've also pulled a tendon in my left leg, so I'll be gimping around for the next week or two. This is very sad, especially as a three-day weekend has just started. Fie on bad playing of whiffle-ball catch! Fie, I say!