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Back to School 2019 Blog Post >>>> One Teacher’s Journey

By allen | August 18, 2019 | 2 Comments

The First Hour, Days and Years Tomorrow marks the beginning of my 24th year of teaching, and despite the many years that have passed, I remember well my first day as a teacher. In truth, my clearest memory is of the first hour of my first day as a teacher.   Incoming students had to locate their name and room number on lists taped to the walls around the school, and then find their way to their homeroom class. Some students arrived early and waited in the hall outside my classroom, even though the door was open. It seemed nobody wanted to be the first to enter the room, but when the first bell rang, they…

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A Brunch of Thoughts

By allen | August 14, 2019 | 3 Comments

My wife and I lead what we consider to be simple, unassuming lives. We still live in the same modest house we bought over 30 years ago when we were in our mid-20s.  That’s a time in life when many couples buy their “starter” homes. Fast forward 30 years and most starter homes in our area are far larger than the house we bought, Based on a couple of decades of conversations with young couples, I doubt the majority of them today would want to begin their lives together in a home that is a cracker box by modern standards.…

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Dark Skies, Lighter Attitude

By allen | August 10, 2019 | 2 Comments

As I am trying to go to sleep at the end of the long embarkation day, I’m struck with the thought that this whole vacation might have been a huge mistake. That thought is hardly uncommon for me. I’m hit with it at the end of the first day of every cruise and many other vacations too.   Fortunately, I’ve learned in most circumstances that my snap judgments are not very reliable, and this proves the case once again. On our first day at sea, I’m always looking forward to the opportunities the day will hold.   Today, Tuesday, we wake up early.…

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Petty Cruise Ship Complaints

By allen | June 9, 2017

We departed Cozumel a couple of hours ago and are on our way back to Galveston. Normally this is a bit of a disappointment, but we’ve had a great time and by Sunday morning we’ll be very ready to be home and sleep in our own bed. I’ve spent many posts detailing the great things onboard this ship, and I’m probably not done yet, but I thought I’d tell you some of the things we really miss while being on these trips. In no particular order: 1. Chips, salsa and Tex-Mex in general. They have a litte walk-up custom burrito place…

A Shared Laugh to Start Our Days

By allen | June 8, 2017

At breakfast this morning in the main dining room Becky noticed that we had 2 pepper shakers, but no salt. Turning the shakers over I realized there was another problem. With both of our waiters standing by the table I told them, “We have 2 pepper shakers . . .and both of those are empty.” Both of our waiters doubled over in laughter and without missing a beat one of them responded, “It’s okay. They are just table decorations anyway” That got us laughing too. A nice way for all of us to start the day.

The Chronic Multitasker

By allen | June 7, 2017

Tonight we are sitting at the very back of the ship enjoying the cool breeze before the Love and Marriage show begins.  I am alternating between listening to several musical artists and one of my favorite audiobooks. While listening I am checking my news feed, taking new photos and beginning to write future posts. All the while I am trying to read and respond to comments on previous posts as they come in. On vacation or at home, that’s pretty much who I am, the chronic multitasker. For most of the last hour Becky has been standing at rail and…

A Hard Working Crew

By allen | June 7, 2017

One of the really nice things about cruising is the free room service. Some would find the menu limited (especially at breakfast) but I think all most people want delivered early is coffee and some sort of snack until they can go for some eggs and b. While it is not required I always give a few bucks to the delivery person. Tips for your dining room waiter, assistant waiter and room are charged to your room at the rate of $12.50 a day, which is a real bargain, but room service delivery tips are optional. You meet very few…

It’s Like We’re Traveling With Del Griffith

By allen | June 4, 2017

Our trip is off to a rough start. The drive to Galveston was very slow due to extremely heavy rain. Every time I said that it looked like the rain was easing off, another torrent came. It was sprinkling when I dropped Becky off at terminal with our bags. As I pulled away from the curb another avalanche of rain began. I finally get to my pre-paid parking spot and an attendant in a golf cart drives me close to the terminal. As I’m getting out of the cart the driver says that it looks like I’m going to get…