We realized there is a story or two from the move that might still be entertaining, so let us go back in chronology a bit.  While in ABQ before we left and debating what items of our should be “moved”, mailed or go with us.  We planned and fretted about what we would need / want right away, those things either went with us on the plane or got mailed so as to be there when we showed up in lieu of being moved and, as it turns out, take 3+ weeks to arrive.  One of the items that threw a monkey wrench in the works was a gallon of real maple syrup.  We usually keep it frozen as per the makers suggestion if not being used for a long time.  This fact would seem to work to our advantage since we decided to bring the syrup along in our luggage.  Recall the story of have a suitcase just for wine etc.  This worked quite well as it turns out.  We put the syrup in a suitcase, brought it on the plane and put it in Ster’s fridge as soon as we go to VA. 

The other oddity before we left was the very day we were supposed to fly out of ABQ it was raining with heavy snow falling just out of town in the mountains.  While there were no issues I had anticipated an irony flavored story if we had troubles flying out due to weather.  The weather here in VA since arriving has been about the same temps we would have seen in ABQ but with HUMIDITY, what a wonderful thing is humidity. 

Now to a more current weather tidbit.  Late January brought noticeable weather to those of you in both the east  and west.  West being warm with the East being quite cold.  One morning before going to work (yes, that is still a strange statement for me to say) I checked the weather.  It was warmer in Anchorage AK than it was in Atlanta GA.  Needless to say those of us north of Atlanta ( most people on the east coast ) had even colder temps at that time.

OK, enough of the weather!

Maybe you recall from the last newsletter that the movers picked up our stuff in ABQ and then it sat there for almost two weeks.  It took them another 10 days or so before they delivered it here in VA.  Good thing we had gone shopping right away to get a chair and TV.  Though as it turned out, it took 3 more weeks to get the TV hooked up to see something on it.  We wanted to use the satellite (Sat) receiver we own which Gene (friend in NH)  picked up from our house graciously mailed to us.  A day or two after we bough the TV we had the Sat guy come out to put up a dish and do the install.  He said he had to put in a 6 ft pole to mount the dish on.  He could dig the shallow hole by hand but that we needed to get approval for the digging before hand.  While I was dismayed at the extra effort required, recall the fence story in ABQ.  I wish they had a similar requirement back then!  But of course this was to the opposite extreme.  We needed to dig about a 3 ft hole.  I actually had to call the state Miss Dig, then get approval from some people on base which all took about 3 weeks.  While you might think our BIG brand new TV sat silent all this time, Netflix to the rescue.  Again recall and old story from the ABQ days when we were not paying for TV service.

While we are not completely unpacked as yet, most all the home comforts are now available to us.  We even bought a new couch.  A bit of history follows.  When we built the house in NH we had next to no furniture.  Soon there after, Kara was going to have a shin dig for her PhD defense and we desired to have something for people to sit other than orange crates.  We did some couch shopping and decided to buy an inexpensive couch to use temporarily.  So if you say 10 years is temp, we fulfilled the plan exactly.  We knew which couch we wanted to buy.  We had visited Chris, a friend in FL, some years ago and he had a Thomasville couch we just loved and had been eyeing ever since.  Recently, we drove over to Richmond to visit with Sterling.  We happened to decide to stop in the Thomasville store there.  Turned out they were going out of business with a sale we figured we just could not pass up.  When we inquired about the price the salesman said “make us an offer”.  We all know we can believe EVERYTHING on TV and with the myriad of shows that include bidding or negotiating, we know that there are always numerous rounds before a price is set.  So when they essentially accepted our first offer, my immediate reaction was “we offered” too much.  Since we had shopped for this couch for so long we knew what the sticker price was and we offered a lot less than that price, so much so I figured they would not accept it.  So having gotten all of one pay check, money was apparently burning a LARGE hole in our pocket and we bought a decade long desired couch at a price we thought we would never see. 

< note a tone in my voice for which you are supposed to have sympathy – David >
I recently completed another full year of existence.  My wife took me out to eat (at the Outback) to celebrate.  She then promptly made me go across the street to the grocery store. She made me go grocery shopping on my birthday!  Kara’s lone excuse is that though we were celebrating my birthday that evening, it was not technically my birthday.

Job related stuff:

Many of you helped in the process if my acquiring a clearance, thank you very much!  The process was successful.  My job is very different, it does not include electromagnetics much (my background).  Though the job is much like consulting, I get to suggest how people should do things and I don’t usually have to actually execute them (its mostly guidance).  Kara’s job is moving along as well.  The group she is in really needed her to show up, there was a severe lack of organization in their group, people not communicating, not following through on tasks etc.  Luckily they brought Kara in and gave her some authority to fix these things and she has made a difference.  I am not sure Kara wanted this type of a task but it turns out she is good at it.  She still worries about being in the electromagnetics group with little to no background other than lunch conversations with me on the topic.  More about the job situation in the next newsletter.  This newsletter is getting dated and I want to send it before the info gets too stale.

The following picture is from the “way back” machine.  Long ago, we took an opportunity to visit the best lady from our wedding while her husband was stationed at an AFB in Anchorage AK.  If we remember correctly, this lake was on base there.  This trip was note worthy for a couple reasons.  We travel to AK after only one week returning from our first HI trip.  That was 3 weeks with a LOT of butt in the plane seat time!.  We visit a couple parks that were very cool, including a water fall.  And the somewhat famous deepsea fishing trip where we all caught one fish but the two girl’s fish were much larger than mine.  The girls made sure to take a picture of this too! 


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