Out to Lunch

I am out on a holiday. Shhh, it is a secret. I will post upon my return but for now, no access and no inclination.

See you on my return.

bahamaloveheader

Rapprochement or End Game

Egregious actions and the complete lack of human empathy, compassion and ethics is what this week has brought to us in the wake of Aurora. I will not go on a tear about Gun Rights or my position on them, yes, I have one and it might surprise many who know my history. What I will do though is pull some very real actions and words from this past week’s headlines and talk about why we are completely out of control as a nation, that we casually accept this behavior and these words. That many of us think nothing of these ‘Leaders’, elected or otherwise vomiting their vitriolic and noxious thinking into the airwaves without a single person standing up and saying to them;

SHUT THE F’ UP YOU VILE EXCUSE OF A HUMAN BEING

Example One – Rep. John McCaherty (R-High Ridge)Missouri will be raffling off an AR-15 at a fundraiser to be held 27-August-2012. According to him and his office this has been planned since April and it is simply, well too

Rep. John McCaherty

late to change the prize to be awarded for a donation of $25. Never mind, this is the same gun used in the Colorado Mass Murder of 12 people last week, never mind whoever wins will not have had a background check before picking up said Assault Rifle and will be perfectly capable of killing everyone at the raffle if they come prepared. No, never mind any of that, John McCaherty is planning to go ahead with his Raffle (note he has renamed it a Drawing) but he is praying for the families of the dead.

Example Two – Kenneth Roop, 52 of Cape Coral, Florida who on Wednesday the 25thof July for no reason other than he damned wall wanted to shot and killed a door-to-door steak sales man, Nick Rainey 30. He didn’t have to

Nick Rainey shooting victim

shoot him the second time in the back of the head, after he was down, indeed in his statement to the police Kenneth claimed his victim had screamed ‘You shot me’, in an antagonistic manner after he had shot him in the shoulder the first time. Using words, we have heard from another ‘Stand your ground’ defense, Roop claims he was still in fear when he shot Rainey in the back of the head ‘for effect’. It should be noted, this isn’t the first time Roop has been in trouble with the law for brandishing guns at unarmed persons, at the time those involved believed he wasn’t in full control of all his senses.

Dr. Jerry Newcombe

Example Three – Dr. Jerry Newcombe, of Truth in Action Ministries. Could not wait for the victims to be identified or their families to be notified before he was jumping on the Biblical bandwagon and blaming this tragedy on our Secular nation. Yes, this self-serving bottom feeder was already writing his pronouncement of damnation as they were announcing the numbers of dead and wounded. He was already blaming society and secularism, along with the loss of prayer and Christianity from our public institutions, as if the Constitution and our foundation demanded this from its beginning. This pompous jackass didn’t even have the decency to ‘pray’ for the victims of the tragedy.

Azzhats, all of them.

Of course, the list goes on when it comes to gun violence and the responses to the tragedy of Aurora. My question though is simply this, when we take the time to look at just these examples don’t we ask ourselves what is wrong with the world we have created for ourselves? Can’t we do better than this? Are we so entrenched in our views it is impossible for us to take a step forward, to meet halfway across the table, sit down for détente and find a reasonable middle that will show our respect for each other and our future.

The following are some Facebook postings I came across, at the time I was stunned. Now I am simply numb.

In fact this isn’t true. The shooter in Colorado obtained his guns legally. The shooter in Florida was a legal gun owner. This is at best disingenuous.

This is nearly as good as comparing guns to cars. Yes, it is true guns don’t kills people. People with weapons in their hands kill people. People who purchase weapons with the ability to fire 400 rounds per minute. People with guns in their hand, inanimate objects with only one purpose, to kill living things; unlike a rock or a car. I find the arguments those who insist their rights to gun ownership without a single restriction to be fabulously narcissistic. In the face of terrible tragedy this is the best you can do, defend your right to kill and wrap it in God, the Bible and the Constitution.

I say this all the time, I will always land on the side of being a Nation of Laws. I will always land on the side of defending the Constitution no matter how offensive I might at times find it. But this, this complete lack of empathy for the victims of tragedy is offensive because I am a human being with compassion and concern for my fellow humans, those I share this soil with. All I can say, grow up and get over yourselves. Start serving more than your own self-interests.

I apologize for my rage. I will hopefully move on from here.

Home Again Holiday Endings

My rolling storm front

The last day of any vacation, especially those vacations when I am leaving the Bahamas are supposed to end with rain. It is a tradition in my mind. I am not at all certain this is how every trip to the Bahamas, or for that matter any Caribbean island vacation ends, but in my mind it is how they should end. Rain and clouds, gray skies and chill winds should see me off the island and in this way I am not so reluctant to return to the mundane of real life.

I am packing bags now, looking out my picture window to the turquoise waters past the break and wondering where that rain cloud is. This is my last day and though the wind blowing across the sands below, the palms fronds are clapping and bending to the west, as yet there is no sign of my desired rain to see me off the islands. Dammit, how can I leave happily without the rain to send me off?

www.bahamasforvistors.com

Courtesy of Bahamas for Visitors

Last night we enjoyed another of our traditions, dinner at the Poop Deck a ‘famous’ Nassau restaurant with spectacular views of the Nassau Marina where everything from small fishing boats to grand yachts dock. The Poop Deck has been in the same location since 1972 serving local cuisine including Bahamian Spiny Lobster, Grouper, different types of Snapper and of course Conch. The Poop Deck is never a disappointment; we never miss our traditional dinner during a trip to Nassau. I will admit there are times I would wish it wasn’t quite so loud, quite so crowded but no matter the day or time we pick to enjoy our meal, well it is always the same. Tables are jammed closely together and you can’t help but hear what the table behind you is discussing. Of course with the Marina directly outside, if there are children nearby they will be undoubtedly bounce on their plastic chairs, point and screech (oh my bleeding ears). I love the Poop Deck, but admittedly it is difficult to have a real conversation beyond, “what do you want to drink?”

Today we return to our real lives. This isn’t an entirely bad thing in all honesty, after some time on holiday I tend to grow bored. Inactivity, lack of access to friends, even the limit of access to news sources, all lend themselves to my readiness to return to real life after a time. I think I   am not really great at enforced idleness, even when I volunteer for it by planning a holiday. While I might be somewhat sedentary due to physical limitations, I am not intellectually indolent needing constant stimulation for my happiness.

Real life, what does that mean? Is it just infrastructure and access or something more? Here are some things I must identify as part of my internal angst and why after seven days I am grow ready to return home, despite my love of The Bahamas.

www.thebahamian.com

One Way, I might be successful at this

  • They drive on the wrong side of the road and I have yet to learn how to shift to the Left, this creates a dependency I am unused to and distinctly dislike.
  • Only one real source of news, I am a news and political junkie so the lack affects me after a time. In fact the lack causes me withdrawal symptoms similar to those of a Heroin addict. It is beyond the official news outlets though to simply having some of my friends and family members to talk to about observations.
  • Food, as much as I love the food of the Bahamas there is so much of it that is fried and I find I am not tolerant of this as a steady diet any longer.
  • Finally, I find the changes currently underway in my favorite place in the world to be disconcerting. I don’t know what to make of what is taking place across New Providence today. In many ways I find the current Bahamian government has taken a page out of the GOP page book, sold the people and nation to the highest bidder (China) where only those in power are thus far benefiting.
www.travellanguist.com

Who wouldn't love pink?

Ah well, there are likely other things I am no longer as tolerant of that once upon a time did not faze me. The truth is I love the downtime, perhaps just not seven days of downtime. Perhaps as my dearly beloved says to me, learn to drive! Perhaps on the next trip, but then not learning to drive keeps everyone else safe. There are so many things I love about Nassau, what is not to love about a country that paints their government buildings Pink.

The clouds are rolling in now, perhaps it will start to rain soon and my departure from one of my favorite places in the world will be as it should be, cloudy and slightly cool. I will not be near so unhappy at leaving the island paradise that is Nassau, Spring Breakers notwithstanding.

Vacation, Why

Holiday, many of us take one a year and spend a not insignificant amount of our hard earned cash to enjoy some time away from our everyday lives. I am no different, though my husband and I tend to have a couple of favorites and we stick to them. We both like Caribbean Islands, the ocean, the sun and breezes from the sea.

Vacation…time away from the mundane, the daily drag of life, you can’t wait for the first day despite knowing you still have to get through airport security and porn x-ray machines. Crowded airplanes full of families with children struggling with far too many over-packed carry-on bags. If you travel out of country you will need to traverse Immigration, with Passport in hand queuing up to await you turn up to 30 minutes, if your luck though it will be far less.

Astonishingly, it seems no matter how long you might have waited at Immigration when you arrive at Luggage Claim, your bags will not have started on the round yet. What you find instead is courtesy of Bleacher Reportnotification your luggage will be arriving at Claim number X, all your plane mates will have their children lined up at the front of the claim like the Defensive Line of the New York Jets; keeping this blocking line does not a bit of good, bags come down when they come down, if your bags come first you must either knock them down to reach your bags or wait for them to leave. Your choice, I choose to politely ask once for them to MOVE and then mow them down.

Before you can finally exit the airport and begin your well-earned holiday the last obstacle is Customs, if you are lucky you look innocuous and touristy enough for you and your bags to pass through without much more more than a cursory question and answer regarding the contents of your bags and your purpose, with the right answer and a lack of shiftiness on your part they will pass you through to your well-earned and much anticipated holiday. Well, this might not be entirely true if you rented a car you might still have a wait. Not necessarily a wait in line, just a wait while your car is located and you are then transported to wherever your rental car might be off or on airport grounds.

Finally though the true holiday begins, bags are flung into the rental car and you are on your way. So why then are we usually somewhat disappointed by what we find upon arrival?

Lumpy beds, too soft or too hard pillows, bathtub / shower combinations with plastic shower curtains that chase you around the shower sticking to your wet  body, towels that feel as if they are made of Luffa and sheets that feel as if they are in fact fine grained sandpaper. Those are just the beginning of the disappointments. Disappointments you always forget when the holiday is over. Unless the hotel is truly ghastly you forget the truth of the room and amenities that did not live up to the trailer provided by the hotel that convinced you to pre-pay for that miniscule discount you received for doing so.

Did I forget to mention if you travel to resort areas this time of year you will also face the dread Spring Breakers? Oh yeah, this is my favorite. Barely out of diapers and out of their parents supervision, wandering the hallways and beaches drinks in hand and generally bad behavior close to the surface, Spring Breakers. Wandering out of elevators where they have lit up their first cigar, thanks. Spring Breakers, who failed to understand yet the idea clothing, even bathing suits are intended to cover our most private parts from public consumption, public exposure while certainly good for tan line control leaves you open; yes really open. By the way did I mention most of you young women have put on that Freshmen 15 and should likely considered something a bit less revealing or at least a trip to WalMart for a larger size before Spring Break.

These were just my general observations. First day observations at that. Yes, we are on vacation, some place I love in fact, Bahamas, yes that is where we are this week. For seven hopefully sun soaked days we will sit on the beach, visit with family, eat wonderful foods straight from the sea and possibly do a bit of shopping.

We are at the same hotel we stay at most times we travel here; the same hotel we met at nearly 15 years ago. We know what we get here; there are rarely surprises for us. I think though we forget the things we don’t like in favor of the reasons we stay, the tradeoff’s.  We like this part of the island, we like the convenience and the beach. I like having a deck where I can enjoy the view of the ocean, my morning coffee and a cigarette without disturbing my non-smoking husband. Works well for us and I enjoy sitting outside listening to the waves, watching people on the beach and huge ocean liners coming in to dock for the day.

Before the week is out I will share some of the reasons I love it here, probably some other caustic observations.

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