Saturday, May 28, 2016

MEMORIAL DAY PREPARATIONS

The island is preparing for its Memorial Day weekend. We always have a nice ceremony to honor the memory of those who lost their lives serving our country. Here are a few shots:

This is right after they fixed the flag. I'm not sure what was wrong with it, whether it was hung up on its lines or what, but they worked an hour or so to get it right.



This is the trolley that takes tourists over the island, snapped before its departure scheduled at eleven o'clock. It left a few minutes early today, so it must have filled up fast. The people have already started pouring in.



This is a view of the pier. You can't see her, but an artist is set up behind the two people going onto the pier, with all her paintings laid out for view and purchase.



These are a couple of other people on the pier. The man is playing his harmonica and serenading the lady who's watching her crab baskets.


And we ourselves had guests this week that we really enjoyed. This little girl was one of them!


Hope everyone has a lovely Memorial Day as we remember all those who died for our country!

Saturday, May 21, 2016

AERIAL DANCE

Last weekend we went to an aerial/trapeze dance exhibition. Little girls used to take tap and ballet but nowadays they've branched out! This is something you usually see in circuses but now it's found a place in everyday life!

The ones we saw use trapezes and hanging silk ropes. They did some amazing postures and poses, including swinging by their legs and/or feet and falling, only to have the silk catch them.

This duo shared a trapeze and at one point, had one girl supporting the other with her knees, among other difficult feats. Amazing!



Then we come to the silks. They're two long panels of silk that the performer climbs, holding up a loop and putting a foot in it, then repeating until she's in the air. Then she uses brute strength to go through various poses.



Here's another silks performer. I wish the camera could have captured one movement where the silks are wrapped around the body and then the performer suddenly drops several feet. It was quite spectacular!



And this is a group performing on the silks. You can see how the performer has to have upper body strength, lower body strength, and core body strength to do all these stunts.



An amazing show, considering they were all kids who'd only been taking trapeze a few years!

We saw this spring exhibition at the Canopy Studio in Athens, GA, but I learned the founders have moved to the coast near us where they've constructed a large studio and give classes and workshops.

Not that I'll be taking any, thank you very much!

Saturday, May 14, 2016

THE USNS BRUNSWICK

Last weekend, our mainland had their Blessing of the Fleet event. Along with the shrimp boats being blessed was the new USNS Brunswick, a cargo ship named for our town. They say the Navy is so pleased with the aluminum transport's overall usefulness in carrying troops and cargo quickly, that they've ordered more.

From the back it kind of looks like a building:



Here's an interesting tidbit: the aluminum is left unpainted since each gallon of paint weighs about twelve pounds, and the thousands of gallons it would take to cover the ship would add extra weight.

Here is the front:



Besides getting itself blessed, the ship offered public tours. Unfortunately, the line was so long we decided against waiting. (Also, we could see little groups of people staggering up flights of stairs and realized we weren't in any shape to do that much climbing!) Here you can see the end of the line after it went around the block:



Kind of neat to have a ship named for us!

Saturday, May 7, 2016

BUYING CARS ONLINE

I decided to replace my older car with a golf cart. My guy, however, reminded me that I can't drive a golf cart all over the island. They're restricted to streets where the speed limit is 25 mph or less. This meant that visiting the grocery store or the movie or the post office was out.

And,  he mentioned, in bad weather, a golf cart can be chilly or hot or wet if it's raining.

But, he added, the electric Nissan Leafs were coming off lease and we could buy one for not much more than what a four-seater golf cart would cost. Of course, they have a limited range, less than a hundred miles.

The objection about bad weather made me stop and think. I don't want to arrive at the library or bridge class soaking wet and grumpy. And a Leaf's limited range is okay. We only need it to run around the island. And unlike a golf car, it can go to the mainland and other places off-island.

So we went out and looked at new Leafs. It was big enough, looked okay, but there were no used ones around here. Not only would we have to go to one of the bigger cities but we'd have to go from car lot to car lot, something I detest! So I got online and found Carvana.

Anybody heard of them? They deliver free if you live within a hundred mile radius of one of their hubs. Since most of the Leafs we found were in Atlanta or Orlando, buying from a dealer there meant we'd pay shipping costs. Carvana's delivery policy sounded great!

On their website, you can browse or put in your make and model and year to filter out cars you don't want to see. They have Carfax reports so you can see it there were several owners or whether the car's been in a wreck. They also have a tour through the car you're looking at. It shows the outside (focusing on imperfections like nicks or scratches or scuffs) through the inside (highlighting features like GPS, cruise control, Bluetooth, rear camera, etc. and also pointing out discolored places on the upholstery).

After checking every day for several weeks, I'd almost decided on one. But someone snapped it up before I made up my mind! So the next time one showed up with low mileage and a good background, I went for it. To be honest, I dithered the first day but visiting relatives kept urging me to take the plunge so I did. I clicked on the buy button and got started. I filled out paperwork online so that the actual delivery wouldn't take so long, signed the releases, and waited for the call.

That was Friday morning. They called that afternoon and said it would arrive Tuesday between one and two. Tuesday, the driver called and said he was leaving their hub and would probably be early and would that be all right? Heck yeah! I danced around impatiently waiting.

He arrived exactly on time. Wish all my service appointments were so punctual.



After he unloaded it, we sat down with some minimal paperwork. I signed and watched him send my deposit to Carvana's bank. We were done in about half an hour. At the risk of sounding like a commercial for them, I'll say that Carvana gave me the easiest car buying experience I've ever had.

Oh, and I have seven days to request a refund if I decide I don't like it.

But I do like it! It's quiet and cute and just like a golf cart only better!


Now to pick out a name...