About Me

My photo
I love a lot. I wait a lot. I try to find a lot to laugh at. I don't usually have trouble with that. I pray a lot. I'm not always sure who or what I pray to, but I firmly believe that prayer makes a difference. I try not to panic very often. I try to learn something new every day. I spend a lot of time poking my nose into other peoples' bidness via their blogs. I clean up an awful lot of feathers. You can dress me up, but you can't really take me out. I travel a lot when I can find bird sitters and we take them with us when I can't. I drink, prolly to excess, but I rarely get sick because my body is a hostile environment to germs (or maybe no SELF RESPECTING germ would LIVE in my body?) I collect: gnomes, passport stamps, MONEY-preferably US dollars or Euros, red headed womyn and chicks named Stephanie. My Momma taught me many many years ago that girls don't fart, they foosie. She taught me lots of other chit too. Thanks for stopping by-leave me a comment and let me know you were here, feel free to link to me, or email me at jacquelynn.fortner@gmail.com

Monday, December 8, 2008

Carving in chalk

A little background for those of you who haven't been with me the whole three months I've been blogging.  My husband works as a jackup boat captain on a boat in Nigeria.  The captain who runs the boat when he comes home for his off time lives in Guadalajara, Mexico, and both of them have to obtain Nigerian work visas each time they go home before they can return to work.  This means they have no regular "hitch".  They are supposed to work five weeks on and five weeks off, but so far, the Innocent Bystander has worked: 100 days on, 28 days off, 55 days on, 30 days off, and now he's been gone 35 days and has no real idea of when he'll be home.  Technically, he is supposed to come home on Dec. 12, but we know already that that will not be happening.  His relief captain does have his work visa, but due to the pay issues going on, does not want to return until he sees some cash in his bank account.  The IB and I understand this, and we knew going in that there would be such issues (there always seems to be in this line of work, both inside and outside of the US, so there is no finger pointing here), so for us it is no big deal.  The other captain is not so understanding, so like I said, we have no idea when my own personal stimulator will be home.  

He has been saying he was shooting for Dec. 28th as a new potential date to return, but I did not really realize why he was so determined to come home before the end of the year until this morning.  Keep in mind that we talk, one way or another, every day and he does occasionally read this blog, so he knows how much I rat the roads and don't just play the shrinking violet while he's gone.  

Every year since we bought the houseboat he has managed to be home for New Years, and we have kind of 'hosted' a party at the Shingle Mill.  We cook a big ham every year, I make finger sandwiches (heh-I said finger) and we buy hats and noisemakers and decorate and generally THROW DOWN.  He asked me this morning what I would do if he did not make it home in time for New Years this year.  I had been thinking of trying to keep up the tradition while he was gone, but when he asked me this morning, I realized it just wouldn't be the same without him, so I said I would probably just stay here at the houseboat and be in bed by nine like I usually am.  He sounded relieved and said "That's a relief.  I won't be so frantic to get home then.  Remember last year?  You almost got picked up by an old black man and I was sitting right there at the same table.  Imagine what might happen if I wasn't there?"

HA!  That threw me back!  I had forgotten all about last New Years.  It was actually very scary-we thought this poor guy was going to be lynched or something before the night was over.

The Shingle Mill is, and there is no way to cushion this or pretty it up, a redneck bar.  Now, you can make all the redneck jokes you want, but some things to true rednecks are no laughing matter, and most folks around here do not take kindly to strangers, particularly dark complected ones, invading their bar.  However, they are willing to put blinders on for a little while as long as said strangers are buying rounds for the whole bar.  ON NEW YEARS.

So this gentleman opens the door.  The bar is packed because it is a holiday, and there is free food, but the place falls silent because he does not. fit. in. He stands at the door and makes some kind of announcement about finally getting his FEMA check and that he had been out here in the summer when a family member had drowned and we all seemed like such NICE PEOPLE so he wanted to buy everyone a round with his windfall.  Everyone quietly murmered their thanks, took their free beers, and went back to their conversations, and this guy just kind of stood there at the bar by himself.  He looked around from group to group, but no one would meet his eye, so he loudly announced that he was buying another round for the bar.  Things picked up a little as everyone took their wooden nickles, but everyone at the bar continued to ignore him, so he started making the rounds of all the tables.  Again, everyone thanked him but no one would include him in their conversations, so he moved on.  Until he got to our table.

We were having a little birthday celebration for my neighbor (she's a New Years baby), so we were all spread out at a very large table.  The IB and I were sitting across from each other because although we ARE touchy feely boys and girls, we don't have to be glued to each other every time we walk out the door.  The guy introduced himself as Ike, and we invited him to sit down and join us.  We introduced ourselves and we all started talking.  I know the IB and I talked about a trip to NYC we'd made recently, and we all talked about places we'd traveled to.  He was a wee bit in his cups and started telling us he was crazy and had the papers to prove it, and pulled out this letter and handed it to me, urging me to read it. It was from the health department and was something about his family not being allowed to handle his SSI benefit checks.  I felt bad for him because obviously he couldn't read, and had to be desperate for someone to talk to to be where he was.  We all continued to talk for awhile, and then he aked me "May I touch your hair?"  Honestly, I did not really think it through, because this is something I've been asked all my life, so I said "Sure." He reached over and grabbed a few strands and rubbed them through his fingers, which I had no problem with, but then he leaned over and started rubbing them-nay-caressing them against his cheek.  I drew back and said "What are you doing?"  and he said something to the effect of "Maybe you and I can get together later."  I gave him the stinkeye and said "Are you out of your mind?" (shhh.  I know-he had PAPERS) "I can't believe you would ask me that with my husband sitting right here!"  He jumped up like he had been electrocuted and said "WHAT?  YOUR HUSBAND?"  We all laughed because we knew it had been a misunderstanding but he was really freaked out and kept backing away from the table apologizing, saying he had no idea that we were even together and that he thought that the only reason we would have invited a black man to sit at our table was because I (the only girl at the table not next to her 'date') wanted to 'be' with him.  He said he thought it might be time to move on down the road.  At this point, one of the locals got up and said "Where's that other beer?"  Ike looked around and said "What other beer?"  The guy started to bow up and said "You said you was buying us another beer, WHERE IS THAT BEER?"  At this point, Ike's eyes are rolling around desperately looking for a way out past this guy who was belligerently demanding a beer, and the IB and my neighbor's boyfriend realized what true and present danger this guy was in, so they got up and escorted the guy out and safely to his car apologizing that it wasn't safe for him there, then came back in and bought another round to diffuse the situation.  It kind of put a damper on the evening until the bully left, then we were able to laugh about the fact that I was not even aware that the guy had been coming on to me.

In any case, now that I've assured him that I will be staying home if he's not home for New Years, he doesn't have as big a sense of urgency to get back.  And frankly, if he's not home, I'm looking forward to a nice quiet New Years with a cup of cocoa (okay, so it's with a shot of Bailey's-it's a holiday) and my Kindle with New Years Rockin' Eve on in the background.  I'll be wishing for my New Years kiss from the IB, but there will also be a little piece of me (heh.  I said a little piece) channeling Bernice from the Golden Girls.  


Braja said...

Oh oh oh oh !!!! Pretty dangly colorful things!!!! Wait...I didn't read the post. I'll go back and do it now.

Braja said...

I sure do hope you got that all backwards and meant to say "an entire bottle of Baileys laced with vodka and maybe with a tiny shot of cocoa." Cos I would.

darsden said...

You can come to my Wii party...so far it's going to be lets see ...humm...me...LOL

derfina said...

Heh. Shiny things distract me too. The cocoa and Bailey's was code for TWELVE PACK OF BUSCH LIGHT IN BOTTLES.

Oh. I'm sorry-was that out loud?


Braja said...

And that's why I love you

Strange Pilgram said...

I simultaneously love and hate getting hit-on. And my skin is crawling... Busch light. A bit of a step up from my Keystone Light days.

Hope you're reunited soon ;)

Dana said...

I thing Perv may be on to something there. If the IB isn't home, have a Wii party or a slumber party or something. Drunken Wii play has got to be fun! Just don't spend it alone!

Our New Years eve tradition is something that my Dad started a long time ago where we make bunches of junk food and eat and eat and eat while watching TV or movies or playing games. It's called a "party til ya puke". This way we do stuff and we are home safe with the kiddos.

This year may be a little different because we won't be in our home. We will be at the inlaws (and yes they are bliss, my MIL is like my bestest bud) house and she is determined that the husband and I are going out without kids.

Now that I have written a half-page comment, I think I am done. You really needed to know all that about me I am certain.

Dana said...

Oh, and because I am phenomenally curious, I have to ask. What happens if your river ices over there? Does that ever happen? Your houseboat intrigues me. I can't help myself.

derfina said...

Braja-me you too, honey!

Strange Pilgram-Eh. I'm a cheap date-what can I say?

Dana-It sounds like fun, but I kinda want to be home because New Years Day is a big cooking day for me-I do the traditional pork, greens, blackeyed peas, cornbread, some sauerkraut for the Hunky in me...Who knows what all I'll make for Fartfest 2009. To do all that, I need an early start, and Dar makes things WAAAY to comfy to get my arse in gear until around lunchtime. We'll see though-you never know what will happen-the only thing constant is CHANGE!

Dar-don't forget your camera tonight!

Stepping Thru said...

Nigeria....been there. No place I would want to spend 5 weeks.
Sounds like you will be spending New Years like I do every year. My hubby doesn't like to dance so we wind up home and in bed by midnight. BORING!

La Belette Rouge said...

That redneck bday cake is quite a thing. Is the redneck wedding cake similar?

Island Travel Girl said...

I hope he makes it home so you can celebrate together - and you never know, you may be in bed by 9 even if he's back ! ;)

derfina said...

Stepping Thru-Mine doesn't dance either, but the dude can drink right along with the best of them! And he is NEVER boring!

La Belette Rouge-Not really sure, since most of the marriages around here are common law. Next time someone hauls out the shotgun, I'll letcha know! *wink*

Island Travel Girl-I hope so too (on both counts!). And we all know I'm the kind of girl to kiss and tell!

*smooches* to all!

Koolio said...

There are two types of people I have learned to stay away from while living in the south - rednecks and inbreeders. I'm assuming the latter is worse. Or is it the same?! *wink*

I'm not sure how you manage to spend most of your time alone but I commend you for it. It sounds like you still have a strong marriage regardless.