Warning: Weirdness and personal details contained within. Mostly weirdness. You've been warned.

Monday, September 08, 2014

Strange encounters of the creepy kind

Just wanted to chronicle some of the weird insects etc. that I've come across this summer.

This one looked like a leaf, sort of.  That bumpy ridge on its back made it pretty hard to see, despite how clear it looks in this picture.  Plus it was cool, until it tried to fly away in the direction of my head.  I imagine the neighbours enjoyed watching me run screaming.  I know Jay did.  

This is the centipede?  millipede? that ran by me while we were out at the lake.  It looked like it was made of plastic, and I had to overcome a surprising amount of freaked-out-ed-ness in order to get my foot that close.  Creeeeeeepy...

This is the tiny adorable gecko that ran out from under the mat outside our front door last weekend.  Those are my toes, for reference.  We had seen one a few weeks before - it was bigger and it came in the door one evening when Jay went outside to do something - except the bigger one was translucent pink, you could see all of its internals.  I'm not sure if that's normal or if it was albino or something, but it looked really cool.  Jay was the one who freaked out that time.  I was so busy removing it for him that I didn't get a picture.  

These are the snails we saw in Newfoundland.  Not sure if you can really tell from this picture, but they're the stripey things all over in the grass.  I'd never seen snails other than in a body of water before.  There were tons, I told Jay I'd gather him a bouquet.  

And this is the Walking Stick?  Praying Mantis? thing that I scared out of the lawn when I was mowing yesterday.  It's super awesomely weird.  

I find all the awesomest bugs.  

Stop - kitten time

One of the other things we did this summer was get another cat.  A guy at work found a stray cat with 3 kittens in his back yard, and we're suckers so we said we'd take one.  The one that colour coordinated best with ours was a grey stripey one.  We named him Yoshi, and he's fitting into our household pretty well.

He gets along with our other cats pretty well.  They play a lot more gently with him than they do with each other, and they cave to his pushy kitten demands.  He bullies them away from their food bowls before they're half done, but they've figured out that he only eats about his share so they can come back later to finish eating what they want.

This is Yoshi when we first got him:

This is him now:

And this is him on my head:

Things. Lots of things.

I was going through the pictures on my phone and realized that we've done a bunch of stuff this summer that I haven't posted about.  Here we go:

Jay's parents came down for about a week at the beginning of July.  One of the things we did with them was go to a ball game.  We had good weather, no rain and not too terribly hot.  Surprisingly, they let you bring in your own food/drinks.  That would have been nice to know beforehand, as the refreshment prices were really high.  If/when we go again I would for sure.  It's nice to have a ball game snack, but we hadn't taken anything so ended up spending quite a bit for supper.  

Then one evening we went with some friends to a little amusement park.  We really went for the go karts which were a lot of fun, but as an added bonus we played mini golf and went on a couple rides too.  Jay wasn't the only one on the teacups, our friends and their 3 year old son are also on there, just out of the picture.  Really they are.  There weren't a lot of people, for which I was grateful, until it got dark and there started to be big lineups for the go karts, so we left.  

Then, something we both enjoyed a lot, we went up and stayed with a friend who has a houseboat on Lake Texoma.  On Friday we went on a sunset cruise with the gorgeous scenery seen here, then went across at dusk to another set of boat slips to look at some of the big boats that other people have.

On Saturday we spent some time out on the water ripping around on the jet ski and watching while our friends' step-son attempted surfing behind the boat.  Then in the afternoon I napped and bummed around on the slip while everyone else went back out to do it again (sorry, I get bored quickly, and I'm old enough now that I don't feel too bad if I do what I want instead).  Did you know you can catch catfish with hotdog pieces?

Later that day we went across to the rich people slips, where people have dockominiums - houses built into the dock slips - and massive yachts.  Jay and I were pretty glad, after seeing things there, that our friends were on the quiet end of the lake.  The rich slip was the party end, which isn't really our style.

We had a really good time, it was super relaxing and neither of us minded being out in the humid heat when there was the chance to jump in the lake or hang out on a boat.  So now we're thinking of maybe getting a cheap houseboat - it's like camping and fishing, all rolled into one.

Then, a couple weeks ago, we flew to Newfoundland for a week of sightseeing before a friend got married.  That's Jay by some Canadian rocks.  We really enjoyed being up there, Newfoundland people are really nice, plus it was good being back in Canada again.  Also, it was great being on vacation and being able to relax, without stressing about work (that would be me stressing, not Jay).  

View from our suite's deck

We first went to Gros Morne park on the west coast, staying in the town of Rocky Harbour for a few days.  We did some short hikes, wandering through the woods and around the beach.
We went on a boat tour of the harbour and saw a bunch of bald eagles.  A couple of the boat tour guides were part of the band Anchors Aweigh, who we went to see in the evening.  Unfortunately, at that point Jay got sick (Return of the Sinus Infection) and the weather decided that rain was a popular vacation sight, so we didn't do much more in Gros Morne other than some driving and relaxing/recuperating.  
Then we moved headquarters to Springdale, where our friends' wedding was taking place.  They took us on a couple sight-seeing drives, one through several towns on the same highway to the view above.  The towns were typical Newfoundland coastal villages: rocky coastline, brightly-coloured houses with steep yards, and lots of trees.  

The view from our second hotel room
Just before the wedding, I ended up catching the dreaded plague too.  Happily, we had a good place to laze around (coughing and blowing our noses).  The hotel we stayed in was fairly new and extremely nice.  Each room had a private balcony overlooking the yard that had adorable little firepits and benches.  The hotel property backed right onto the river.  This was very evident after the wedding, when a large beaver wandered up onto the hotel lawn.  The groom was able to get within a few feet of it, with the wedding photographer trailing behind to capture the moment.  Authentic Canadian charm.  

All in all, a pretty good summer so far.  Since we're in Texas, we still have a month or two of warm weather, so hopefully more good weekends coming up.