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July 4th, 2005

Independence Day...

Needless to say, we were at breakfast promptly at 9AM this morning. We beat both the boys and the girls down today, but at the table sat a new couple -- straight (presumably born that way, so can't blame them for making a bad choice) who were from England. Delightful people. First time in the States, making their way to Orlando to visit one of their three sons -- the only one with children -- three daughters.

The first course, which consisted of chunks of watermelon topped with Crème fraîche and blueberries was placed with aplomb at our places until Donald could no longer stand the absence of comments.

"Hasn't anyone noticed? It's red, white, and blue."

Ooohs and Aaahs all around, much to his delight.

Donald smiled his way back into the kitchen, and Beth and Lori came in. I said quickly and quietly to them while pointing to their food, "Notice the red, white and blue theme when Donald comes back in."

They did, and he squealed in delight, "See, they noticed it!"

I said, "Oh yes, as soon as they walked into the room! They were all over it."

Today's breakfast consisted of a biscuit, hash browns, three sausage links, and scrambled eggs. I think it was scrambled eggs. At any rate, it was delicious.

Back at the room, we showered and packed in order to meet our 11:00 check-out time. We actually ended up ready to go closer to 10:30 than 11:00.

We took I-26W out of Charleston to I-95. There were several State Troopers on that road in the approximately 52 miles we were on it before turning onto I-95N. Bears in the woods, good buddy.

I forgot to mention that at the beginning of our stay at 4 Unity Alley, Donald had asked for my car keys to be kept in a little basket by the front door, so that they could re-arrange the cars as needed in the garage that held four cars, but only precariously.

I have one of those detachable key rings that look something like this:

upon which I have on one side: the fob that opens my car doors, my office door key, and my (home) mailbox and house keys. On the other side is my actual car key, and all of my other keys.

I had detached the side with the fob, and threw it in the basket, only to be berated by Donald the next time I saw him that while it was nice to have the fob to unlock my car, he was not able to start the car to move it, since the car key itself was on the half of the chain that I had kept. I dutifully removed the car key and added it to the fob side, which I returned to the aforementioned basket.

Back to the trip home: It's lunch time. We pull into Arby's. I detach my keys like I always do, and throw them into the console, get out, and look with horror inside as the side of the key chain still containing both the fob and the car key are sitting in the console. Fuck!

When I leave my car, I usually keep the side with just the fob and the three other keys on it, as it's smaller, and I can just use the fob to open the doors. But, I don't get all worked up, when on a rare occasion I keep the wrong half, as the key to the car is on the other half. Not the case now. I work very hard to take personal responsibility for this, but do have a very difficult time not blaming Donald for this quandary.

A half-hour or so later, AAA arrives and a skinny little man whose Levis tag brags a size 27" waist, and whose head shouts a huge mullet comes to our rescue. He stuck this white plastic wedge at the top of the passenger door, and banged it in a little. In the small space that it brought, he inserted a little bag that looked like one of those blood pressure cuffs, and he started pumping on the little pump to pull the door out even further.

With enough space now, he inserted a metal rod with a hook on the end, and started trying to press the power (un)lock button. It unlocked, but then immediately locked before he could pull the door open. Then the panic alarm went off. Drama.

He tried to get the (power) windows to come down -- to no avail. I got next to him, and had my hand on the door handle, and when he once again pushed the lock down, I yanked on the door as soon as it unlocked -- before it could lock back up again. Luck! Robert grabbed the key, and pressed the panic button to stop the alarm. Whew!

We got back to Raleigh at about 4:30, and took a nap from 4:30 to 5:30, after which we drove to Steve's for a 4th of July cookout. Sue and Tom were there, who are always a pleasure, as well as Brian, his girlfriend Michelle, Debbie, and we were later joined by Joe. Everything was delicious. We listened to this, and had a good laugh:

http://www.joleneroxbury.com/uploads/Gynocological%20and%20Psychiatric%20Center.mp3

We left Steve's at about 9:00, and agreed to meet Joe at Flex at 10:30. When I got up to get ready, Robert decided that he was going to stay in, which, quite frankly, is what I wanted to do, too.

I got to Flex close to 10:30, and it was dead in there. Joe didn't end up arriving until about 10:45, getting stuck in traffic by the fairgrounds, which was emptying out after the fireworks display held there.

We played three or four games of pool, and then, at about midnight, Doug arrived. We listened to him snap, crackle, and pop for about a half hour, and then we all left. He showed us the extensive damage to his BAV (big-ass vehicle), from where he hit a deer recently. Poor deer. Poor dear.



This is what my Arbitron diary consisted of today:

Start
Stop
Duration
Call Letters
Dial Setting
AM
FM
At Home
In a Car
At Work
Other Place
9:5410:3036 minsWEZL103.5 X    X
17:5218:2028 minsWQDR94.7 X X   
18:2021:00160 minsWQDR94.7 X    X
21:0021:3030 minsWQDR94.7 X X   

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