Born in Germany as an Army brat - I moved permanently to the United States about the time I was ready to start school -
Dad put to me to work when I turned 13 tearing off roofs and packing shingles.. I did that, DE tasseled corn and bucked hay all the way through high school. After graduation, moved down South for a year or so trying to figure what I wanted to do. Finally came home and joined the Air Force serving almost 5 years - which included a 3 year tour in Germany, where I met my Queen.
Came home and started working as a roofer. Economy went to crap and I knew I would not be able to support my growing family the way I wanted to, so I pestered the HR department at General Electric until they hired me.
A very quick almost 34 years, 4 Daughters and 9 Grandkids later - here I am .... waiting as patiently as I can, to start the next chapter of our life - romping around in the Caribbean Sea checking out the various islands that we have not been to yet.
Holy $hit what a ride~!!!! ;-)
Due to [apparently] every changing circumstances…. well tended to plans ALL changed……….. so today – instead of doing what I had planned on ALL week…… I got to sleep in a minute, have a nice breakfast and still make it into the ATV yard to help out the island kids. That entailed showing up to ride tail on a tour of some fun folks from Alabama……… good riders, friendly – fair questions and good tippers~! We got them back in ample to take advantage of the second half of their land and Sea package (we’re land) 😉 As it turns out, there was a second tour and Shawn had already laid claim to it — so I gathered up my camera and launched my happy a$$ right on out the gate……… (well….. it is after all Shawn’s birthday…. so I ‘had’ to let the ole Jarhead get his way) 😉
Back at the house – I uploaded my trail pictures, cleaned up, and loaded into the truck to head to mid-island. My Queen made a request last night and I was bound determined to fulfill it. She wanted/needs a new iPad/Tablet…. for her games. Her little one apparently finally bit the dust…… and I was on it~! Went to Sunny Isle where Office Depot is located. Please understand…… I would rather have my tongue branded, than go any where near this particular location on the island…… but sometimes…… just sometimes……. a feller has to do what a feller has to do. I finally made it into the store….. dealt with the required number of locals in the store who said “we are out” until I finally got one who at least acted like he cared. A looooooong ugly story later – I walked out with a tablet I’m hoping my Queen will like. From there on to Home Depot……… Oh good….. another 2″ x 4″ across the forehead……… I am going to spare you all the sorted details of that experience… lets suffice to say — I finally left with a new grill, a grill cover and some replacement line for my weed eater. I finally broke down and got a new grill….. I really do miss grilling food…… but with my Honey Bear and her crew coming in the end of the month – I [hope] they will want to save a ton of money and just have burgers, dogs and ‘grillin’ stuff here for most of their visit….. and I need to be ready for that~!
Back at the house, grill unloaded and set up…… edited and uploaded ATV pictures… started ‘breaking in’ the grill while I did that….. little ole multi-tasker that I am……. FINALLY got the message from my Bride that she was soon headed my way…… an hour later….. she showed up. I had drinks made….. she has her new tablet charging, still debating whether either of us are hungry enough to fire up the new grill yet or not….. but our day is happily wrapping up. Angie is working a half day tomorrow….. followed up by Mani-Pedi’s with a friend afterward…… I am back on the boat…. again out on my end of the island…….. ready to get wet…. and hoping the Sharks are extra friendly~!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Good Night Ya’ll < < < < < < < < < < < Thankx for stopping in~!
Up much to early this morning after a pitiful nights sleep. I figured I was much to tired last night to worry about taking Advil PM’s, so I skipped them. That’ll learn me not to try and think~! Tired and not wanting to get out of the sack – I rolled out anyway to keep my alarm from waking up my bride who seemed to be snoozing just fine. I forced myself through my morning ritual and soon settled in at the table to see the latest crap being spewed out that they are trying to call news. At least with FB – I know it is all BS and no one is (believably) trying to convince me otherwise.
I made myself eat an egg/sausage/biscuit, so I had something in my belly to take my meds on. That done, my Queen now up and having a coff of cuppee with her, I was soon out the door a little after 08:00 to be at the pier by 08:04…… one of the reasons I love having the boat on this end of the island………On board, gear put together and camera put together… I welcomed the (very) small crowd of guests aboard….. love them small boat loads, but not very good for business. Sure does make it easy to get “people pictures” of every one on board. First dive site this morning was my personal absolutely favorite dive site – Armageddon~! My camera kept working (it has malfunctioned the last 2 times on this site) and I had one shark that just made my day…… if you haven’t seen the picture on FB yet — it will be posted below and there should be no doubt in your mind which one I’m referring to……. love it, love it, love it~! Second dive was pretty non-descript…. but that’s okay…. you’ll have those every so often!
Everybody safely back at the dock. Everything unloaded and me back home to my Queen. Gear rinsed, a wonderfully delicious supper of Spaghetti and meatballs with mushrooms and onions…. Yummers~! I may have to sleep out in the truck tonight – but it’ll be OH SO worth it~!
Taking the day off (from diving) tomorrow to help out the island kids with an ATV tour ( I didn’t quite catch the specific’s but did get the part where they were asking for help if I could). THEN it finally dawned on me…..duh….. tomorrow is Pork Chop’s (Shawn’s) birthday and being the loving wife Cynthia is [cough, cough] – she does not want him working on his birthday……. very happy I can oblige~~ So – probably some trail pictures for tomorrow, before I spend the rest of the week underwater~! Since I will have the bulk of the day off — I may run out to Home Depot and pick up a grill……. my Honeybear and her crew will be here the end of the month and I need to get it broke in so I can fix them burgers and dogs………. gotta keep my crew fed~! Right now – I’m gonna go get a shower and take my Advil PM…. and see if I can get some sleep for my big day tomorrow.
Good Night Ya’ll > > > > > > > > > > > > Thankx for stopping in~!
Up bright and early this morning to start off a new week of diving. Finally got caught up on everything I needed to be and moseyed my tired old touchas into bed around 9:00 last night. I do not hardly remember my head hitting the pillow before I was ‘out’. I could get all kinds of attached to that~! I woke up around 03:00, still on top of the sheets about to freeze…… crawled under the sheets and spent the next 3 hours, uncovering and covering myself because I was either to hot or to cold…… it was still a decent nights sleep though and I rolled out anxious to get in the water. Even nicer that the boat is out here on this end of the island for the next couple days in anticipation of less than stellar weather. Neither dive today was noteworthy…. no sharks….. Dammit Emmit…… nothing big – although I did get a couple of nice turtle shots….. one teeny little spotted eel and some topography shots. Second dive was a nice slow paced mostly shallow dive and I got to play with my camera a little bit…. I like those, as that’s where I am learning the cameras capabilities~! Back at the house – gear rinsed, a wee bit of dinner and I’m ready for my shower. Another day on this end of the island tomorrow – so we’ll see what that brings. You can bank on the fact there will be more pictures though~! For now – I’m calling it quits early tonight………
Good Night Ya’ll * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Thankx for stopping in~!
Sorry about skipping last night – but by the time I came back from my third dive of the day [Dive with your Junior day]…. and got my gear rinsed…. almost 400 pictures from the entire day loaded…. edited, sorted and filed correctly….. I had time for a quick bite to eat, a shower and some sack time. Even though I knew I got to sleep in the next morning….. I was worn out~! Especially…… ESPECIALLY if you’re following my FB posts…. you know that I had a wonderfully magnificent SHARKexperience yesterday~!!!! I not only ‘bumped’ one shark off of me using my camera…………… before it was all said and done – I bumped 5 sharks off of me….. I cannot honestly say it was 5 different sharks (at that time they were moving VERY fast and it was really hard to tell if they were the same ones or not). I did my level best to be cool as I knew I had at least 4 different sharks circling me and coming at me when I did my “call”. Instead of fleeing for the safety of the surface like my last encounter…… I stayed in position and used my camera as a shield to bounce off the bigger guys (biggest I’m estimating was 6.5′) didn’t really matter though….. from my vantage point – they all might as well have been whales~! Trust me when I tell you – – – as someone who has jumped out of an airplane [from some pretty crazy heights] well over a thousand times……. THATwas an adrenalin rush that would rival any almost any jump~! The beauty of it — I got several awesome shark shots that I am just proud to pieces of~!! Yes….. I get an immense amount of pleasure knowing I ‘got that shot’~!!!!!!! I apparently left my truck keys laying out on the table over night – along with ALL my gear – but- EVERYTHING was still there this morning….. so I guess our little place is a little safer than I thought~~
Laid in bed and ‘forced‘ my self to stay there until almost 08:00 when my Queen finally rolled out. I dutifully made the bed and straightened up the bedroom before finally getting my access to do my thing. After getting good and woke up I made us both a nice breakfast. I cleaned up and did dishes before going out to mow the yard (yes I JUST did that 3 days ago) but we have had rain and it is back to growing like no body’s business. Yard done, I drove to the dump to drop some stuff off – got gas for my truck, stopped by the dive shop to drop off a flash drive for the boss before coming back out and making us drinks. I jumped in and made what turned out to be a very feeble attempt at dinner for my Queen (T-bone steak and baked tater and garlic bread) Long story to that one – but I mostly loused it up. I am [sadly] out of practice doing that – but am committed to doing better from here on out.
Mothers Day today for lots…… I hope all you “Mother’s” out there had an extra special day today. I hope you got to talk to your Mom if you’re lucky enough to still have her in your life. If you are now the ‘Mother’ in the situation – I hope the other people in your life at least tried to make your day special…… You’ve earned it and dang near every day should be ‘Mothers Day’.
Diving for the next 3 days that I know of……… Good Night Ya’ll – – – – – – – – – – – – – Thankx for stopping in~!
Up this morning bright and early even though I REALLYwanted to keep my happy tired old touchas in bed……… I was sleeping soundly when my internal clock told me to get the hell up so my alarm didn’t disturb my Bride. Up and mostly at ’em…. I rolled out, bumped charged a whole set of batteries (after all it had been over a week since I used any of them!) Fixed my cooler (4 very cold Budweiser’s), some water and some snacks. I was reasonably sure I was going to be ‘bullied‘ into shooting the afternoon boat [a bunch of snorkelers] and I didn’t want to go the entire day without something to eat if I did. While I was politely invited to tag along on the snorkel boat – I unloaded the tanks, grabbed my gear and politely said “Oh, hell no“. They left it at that and I was soon on the road back to my Queen. She was still asleep when I left this morning [which delighted me to no end] and I left as quietly as my old truck would let me.
She was up and making a drink when I pulled in – and for the first time in well over a week, our routine was back to something close to ‘normal’. I told her about the dives. Nothing extraordinary on them – first dive had “ermazing” visibility [150+’]…. second dive – ‘vis’ was horrible – but still a good dive. I managed a few salvageable shots and everybody had a good time……… It sure felt good to be back underwater~!
Back at the house now…… ALL pictures (from the last 2 days) edited and put up in their respective places….. have had a bite to eat and 2 or 8 drinks…… ready for a shower and some very much needed sleep. Caught up with our Damn Neighbors a couple of days ago…. regaling us of a new drink they have come across…. sure do love hearing from them (even when they are feeding us a line of [suspected] crap about their [still have] drinking prowness~~~~ bunch of rookies… but we love them……………..
Longer day tomorrow. 2 tank dive in the AM – then a 1 tank dive in the afternoon for a “Dive with your Jr” day. Something the shop does Quarterly or so……. getting your [age appropriate] kids to go diving with you…… that is always a lot of fun – watching kids diving with their parent(s). Looking forward to shooting that~!
Got a late birthday gift in the mail from my Honeybear…… sent me a pair of ‘deck’ shoes that I absolutely love…… she got me a pair before – but this pair I can actually put on without getting winded (first pair was JUUUSTa smidge small) They will be here in just over 2 weeks and me and ‘Ma‘ are just absolutely beside ourselves in anticipation of seeing her and her ‘crew’…….. That’s it for now……. more tomorrow….
Good Night Ya’ll – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Thankx for stopping in~!
Greetings and salutations Ya’ll………. I’ve got a couple of minutes before my Bride gets here and thought I better see if I can get a couple of words out to you before you forget that I’m at here on the world wide web. I got Lil Sis Nelia and her crew off to the airport fairly early this morning. She just pinged me and said they are in Chicago right now – so they’re almost back. Sure was nice having them here. I always look forward to getting to spend some time with her and her husband. Their ‘damn‘ neighbors are a hoot and the six of us all had a ball…… at some point – I need them to meet ourDamn Neighbors….. that could be dangerous. 😉
Angie decided she was going to go into work at Blues in anticipation of a big day tomorrow there. We are both working tomorrow to help support the big Cinco De Mayo celebration that Blues usually has. With the island mostly opened back up – people are ready to get out and party and I expect a sizable crowd. My Queen just pulled in and I made us drinks and am now waiting for her to get in her ‘comfies’. I kept myself fairly busy today, doing some long overdo mowing, weed eating, did a little cleaning around the house, did the dishes and just piddled with a bunch of little odds and ends. I ran in town to get the Gecko’s yard cleaned up – but they were in the middle of tours changing – so I said I’d be back in the morning to get their yard cleaned up. I should have enough time to get that done before getting a shower and heading out for Blues.
My Queen and I are already into our third drink…… so I’m gonna quit right here. I have quite a few pictures to share with you. Pretty sure there will be no rhyme or reason to the order I put them up in, so bear with me and I’ll try not to duplicate any. Just a reminder – it’s probably going to be late-thirty before we get home tomorrow night, so doubtful there is a blog tomorrow. Somewhere around Friday our lives ought to return to some semblance of normalcy for a little bit – at least until my Honeybear comes in with her brood at the end of the month. Can’t wait~!!!
Good Night Ya’ll ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Thankx for stopping in~!
I was rudely roused out of a solid slumber this morning by my Brides alarm going off. Something I had not planned on because I was ‘off’ today with no need to get up early other than to answer natures call, but I got up and made the bed and opened the bedroom up – while waiting for my turn in the bathroom. That done, Angie out the door – I settled in to enjoy my day off. I only had a couple of errands to run and I was kinda looking forward to that. Had to swing by the store and pick up a couple of odds and ends….. next door neighbor asked if we could pick her up some stuff while we were at it. Since my Bride was working – I said I would be glad to take care of it. Got my running done, and was in the neighborhood – I stopped into Blues to see my Queen and chat with Jim for a little bit. I haven’t been there in quite a while and was starting to have Blues withdrawals. I had a couple of beers while I chatted with Jim and helped with some of his stuff. It finally got to be Noon and the place opened for business – so Jim had to go to work. So I gave my Bride a kiss and headed for the store. Neighbors list was a little more than I was expecting – but I got it done, getting almost everything on the list. It’s always an adventure and a guessing game when you go to the store here on the island….. you never know if the store will have any of what you are going for.
Got back to the house and chatted with Angie just to find out, Little Sister was stuck in Chicago because of air plane problems and they might not make it in tonight. Dammit Emmit~! We sat and chatted and waited for updates. Still nothing, but its not starting to look good….. Dammit Emmit. I guess it will be another hour or so until we know for sure whether the Michigan crew will make it into the island tonight.
It was kinda weird to run around and do all that stuff instead of spending the first 5 hours of my day on a boat and/or underwater. Probably ought to do it a wee bit more often. I taken so many pictures this past week – not sure I can remember which ones I’ve sent you and which ones I still need to share…. so bear with me if you see some duplicates…… Again, if and when Nelia makes it in…. posts will probably be intermittent for a while.
Good Night Ya’ll > > > > > > > > > > > > > Thankx for stopping in~!
Today’s boat got cancelled and somewhere in the midst of the night – got rescheduled…… only having 3 paying customers on board though made for a pretty skimpy load – sure is easy to keep track of everybody though~!! I dutifully showed up and took pictures…. even though the one full paying customer had a nicer camera than I’ll probably ever have…… but those kind of things happen. I took pictures and acted as happy as I could be, to be there. My belly was giving me fits (not really sure why) and that makes it tough to keep a smile on your face when you’re afraid you’re gonna drop a boom-boom in your swim trunks…. in front of people no less~~~ I made it [happily] through both dives and got the boat unloaded (again, thankfully only 10 tanks today)…. before jumping in my truck and racing back to the house.
My Queen was at work, so I had the place to myself, while I sat, edited pictures, dried off and listen to it absolutely pour rain for about an hour. Not complaining – because even after an almost full day of rain yesterday – we still need it terribly. My Queen has pinged me 3 times now in the last hour and a half saying she is done with work….. not terrible sure I understand why it’s taking her that long since it’s only a 30 minute drive….. but I know she is ‘surprising’ me with Gusto Pizza~!! Hopefully she rolls in here soon…… or I’m gonna have to go look for her…..dinner ain’t that friggin’ important…. even pizza~!
Taking the day off tomorrow to get a couple of things done before Little Sister and the Michigan crowd gets here and takes our little island by storm. Should be a fun week with them. I will try and keep up with blog and FB trivia….. but hard tellin’ what’s gonna happen……. you can bank on the fact it will be fun….. and there will be pictures……. I hope.
Good Night Ya’ll ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ Thankx for stopping in~!
Up early this morning after a mostly wonderful evening of good food and good times last night. We got a call from our ‘Damn Neighbors‘….. sorry so & so’s….. they were already good and messed up [from saying their afternoon prayers] when they called – which made for an absolutely delightful conversation. They called to wish me a happy birthday….. only a short week late…. but I would not expect anything less from them….. Love them anyway. We spent 15 minutes laughing at each other and calling each other mostly vulgar names…. until they had to stagger off and go to bed under the premise of “having to get up to go to work”…… yea – right~! 😉 Always love hearing from those two.
Into the marina this morning to a really ‘lite’ boat…… 6 divers…… about half of them were brand new divers so it gave me and the Dive Master a lot to keep our eyes on. First dive site – The Trench….. becoming a favorite of mine – but due to the layout of it – it sweeps in deep Sea currents and visibility usually leaves a lot to be desired…. today was no exception. We did get a couple of sharks (rare for this site) that came in which just thoroughly wigged out a couple of the new divers…… but being the “good guy” I am [and wanting ‘that shot‘ put myself between the sharks and the new divers, so everybody remained mostly chilled…… and I managed a shot or two.
Second dive was another ‘Sharky‘ dive and once again – I entertained the crowd by being circled by 3 sharks…… I love it~! Later, I handed my camera off to one of the newer divers who had asked about it and let him fire off a half a dozen shots….. HMmmmm…… I think I see a business opportunity here…….. anyhow…. I get a picture of me once in a while……… Finally back – boat unloaded, guests on their way…… a very cold beer and I was headed back West. Turns out our end of the island had a morning of some verymuch needed rain. Still pouring when I got here – I got a ”free” rinse of my gear and hung it up on the line….. and then took a ‘shower’ in some very cold rain standing out in our back yard……. pure, clean, [cold] rain……..
My Bride fed me a pork chop, some green and yellow stuff and a mostly sad version of smashed taters (even by her own admittance… they were sad)….. belly full of Vodka and a little bit of chow….. I’m ready for a l-o-n-g nap…… The way it stands right now….. I am NOT diving tomorrow because they do not have enough people for the boat…… that is, however, subject to change….. we’ll see~~~~~
Good Night Ya’ll : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : Thankx for stopping in~!
Yesterday – I spent the bulk of my day on a huge Catamaran….. it is a sailing charter boat that was needing some underwater pictures for the dive excursions they are trying to offer off of their boat. The agreement was – I was to take pictures of a ‘local‘ celebrity that wanted to try SCUBA diving off of their boat. Turns out…. aforementioned celeb wasn’t feeling up to par and opted out of the day’s sail. The owner, in true old fashioned style, said I’m not sending everyone back home because ‘celeb’ can’t make – so we’re going out for a day of fun……… and we did. As it turns out, the owners girlfriend had JUST completed her ‘Open’ water diving certification – so I turned my focus on her…… we covered some of the most gorgeous water around the island…… after the last dive, there was beer, some damn fine baby back ribs and other ‘fixin’s‘ that most people with any sense would be proud to put in their mouth. The owner [Clay] – a likable kinda guy and his girlfriend Sandra…. run the boat…. local charter that can be rented out for the day or by the week. Swan Charters LLC. I would absolutely give them a thumbs up if you are visiting the island and want to check out St. Croix from a very unique (and gorgeous) prospective….. ( email@example.com) Quite honestly….. I didn’t get back from that charter until almost 6:00 and I was absolutely shot when I got home…… so a quick shower, a small bite to eat and I fell into bed and slept the sleep of kings for 7 hours~!!!!~ (so- sorry for no post on the blog)
Today – Back out on “my” boat….. North shore – First dive site was North Star [a fav] and I was not disappointed….. same for the second dive… a drift dive… where you let the current carry you where it may and the boat comes and picks you up. A little more complicated than that – but that it is in a nutshell. Second dive I got me a shark ‘experience’ that is still making me smile……. 2 different occasions, I gripped my camera with both hands (I usually shoot one handed) and was expecting impact from a charging shark. There was a lion fish kill on the dive that got this particular shark ‘amped’ and twice….. I planned on the fact that if my strobes [flashes] didn’t turn him – he would impact me…… and I was good with that. I held my camera deftly up in front of me and waited. Down side…… I had my strobes set for about 6′ thinking that was as close as I was gonna get….. turns out it was a lot more like 6“ and most of my shots “washed” out [too bright] – but I salvaged a couple. That really gets the ole ticker a pumpin‘ when you have a 6′ Caribbean reef shark charging you……. I Love it~!!! Also got some nice shots of my favorite….. a Giant Green Moray Eel~!! What a day~!!!
Came home to a surprise [badly needed] birthday gift (new flip flops) from Daughter Stephanie and Co. ….. my queen had a drink ready…… 85° with a nice cool breeze….. I’m tellin’ ya….. thisis the life~!
Good Night Ya’ll – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Thankx for stopping in~!