Tag Archives: Travel

Isn’t This SeaWorld? Where Are the Dolphins?

A few weeks ago, Kiefer and I took Boo and Radley to Florida for our family honeymoon. We visited friends, went to the Tampa Aquarium, and went to SeaWorld (#26 on my 35 Before 35 List).

Growing up, I wanted to be a marine biologist, so I could train dolphins and do this:

SAM_0405

I did not know that to swim with the dolphins sometimes you get the short straw and end up dressing up like a bird…and don’t get to swim with the dolphins at all.

SAM_0404

Seriously? It’s called “The Dolphin Show” because I want to see the dolphins. After seeing the show, I propose these more accurate names:

  • The Why-Doesn’t-All-That-Actor’s-Make-Up-Wash-Off-in-the-Water (and Dolphin) Show
  • The People-Who-Are-Crazy-to-Dive-Into-the-Water-From-That-High-Up (and Dolphin) Show
  • The I-Don’t-Understand-the-Plot-of-This-Story-Where-Dolphins-Are-the-Supporting-Actors-Instead-of-the-Leads Show

None of us had ever been to SeaWorld before, but we thought it would be like Baltimore’s aquarium…only awesomer since B-more’s aquarium makes the a top U.S. aquariums list.

You know what else makes the top aquarium list? SeaWorld.

Apparently, our expectations too high.

We thought SeaWorld might have some educational value for Boo and Radley. We were wrong. However, we did learn…

  1. PETA owns part of SeaWorld…WHAT?
  2. Orca trainers can’t be in the water with the whales. Instead they (the trainers, not the Orcas because let’s face it, that would have been amazing) dance in one foot of water. And by “dance,” I mean side step.

Just last week an appeal was filed to let trainers back into the water, so we’ll see how that goes.

I wish I had some cool pics to show you of the Orcas, but here’s how all of those pictures look:

SAM_0400

Missed him. Missed him again! And…again!

Favorite Comment From Last Post: “Honestly, that apple dumpling COULD have been sent to someone in need (ie: me) You should be ashamed.”—Carmen


Pete the Penguin Shark Dives

Today I’m continuing Pete the Penguin’s story….

WARNING: I know these next pictures are going to be particularly disturbing. The pictures are real. Kiefer really went shark diving. I know it looks extremely realistic, but I swear I photoshopped in the pictures of Pete the Penguin. No animals were harmed.

Dear Thoughtsy,

I’m shark diving today. I decided to take our new pet Pete the Penguin with me. Don’t worry; I dressed him weather appropriately.

Look how much fun Pete and I are having! It’s like we’re starring in an episode of Shark Week. The sharks here are so nice. They’re really more like the sharks from Finding Nemo: “Fish are Friends, Not Food.”

Shark diving is 100% safe.

Wish you were here!

Love, Kiefer

To Whom It May Concern:

I regret to inform you that there was an accident. I’m ok, but Pete…Pete didn’t make it. I turned my back for just one second, and he was gone. Just one second. I don’t understand how this could have happened. I didn’t even hear the Jaws theme.

…I have a confession. Pete’s death wasn’t an accident. The shark rattled the cage, and I panicked. The whole thing’s a blur, but apparently I shouted, “Take the penguin instead! I can’t die yet! I haven’t even proposed to Thoughtsykins yet!” before tossing Pete out of the cage and into the Great White’s massive jaws.

I swear this is not a reflection of my parenting skills. Our future children have nothing to fear. Nor is it a reflection of petsitting abilities. I promise to take excellent care of Esme.

Please don’t hate me.

Love, Kiefer

Let’s hope that Kiefer is more responsible with the baby than he was with Pete the Penguin.

Last time Kiefer and I were in Tampa, we’re sure we saw Pete at the aquarium. Hopefully, we’ll see him again this year.

Favorite Comment From Last Post: “I don’t know — Pete’s cute, but he looks like he’s planning something. Like, you’d get him home, and he’d wear the butler suit and serve you drinks, but then you’d wake up the next morning and find that Pete and all your jewelry are gone.”—Laura


That Was NOT a Honeymoon

When you visit Greece a month before your wedding, everyone asks if that was your honeymoon.

The answer: No. No, it was not.

Originally, Kiefer planned to propose in Greece. Just because he proposed early didn’t make Greece our honeymoon.

When you’ve waited as long as Kiefer made me wait, you get as many trips as you want. So we’re doing two honeymoons: one just Kiefer and I after the baby is born and another with Boo and Radley.

Our family honeymoon is this week. We’re headed to Florida to visit some friends, SeaWorld, and the Tampa Aquarium, where we will hopefully see Pete the Penguin.

Who is Pete the Penguin?

A penguin Kiefer got me when he went to Africa a few years ago.

Dear Thoughts,

I’m in Cape Town today visiting the penguins, and I thought of you because you love penguins. I’m going to try and smuggle this little guy back for you.

I’m not ready to marry you yet, but I am willing to commit to raising this penguin with you. Let’s name him Pete. Pete the Penguin. We’ll get him a butler suit and teach him to serve cocktails just like you’ve always wanted.

Love, Kiefer and Pete

Favorite Comment From Last Post: “It is never too early to start teaching about the undead. And I hear braaaaaaains are great for teething.”—KittenThunder


Are You Trying to Kill Me?

Right before I left for Greece, my coworker Ddot relayed a crazy pregnancy story about his wife.

When she was pregnant, she spent a lot of time on bedrest. One time while she was upstairs, she called downstairs to Ddot because she was hungry.

Ddot: I just finished up the dishes. Want me to bring up some of the ham we had yesterday?

Ddot’s Wife: Are you trying to kill me? ::begins crying::

Hormones are crazy things. While he comforted his wife, he asked her what she wanted instead. Her answer: a Whopper…with cheese.

I found the story hilarious and relayed it to Kiefer…and it became the tagline for our entire Greece trip.

  • We ordered shrimp…which came with the heads on them. ::shudder:: I said, “Are you trying to kill me?”
  • We ate frozen yogurt. Greek frozen yogurt does not taste like American frozen yogurt. Kiefer said, “Are you trying to kill me?”
  • An hour later, I wanted a popsicle. Kiefer said,  “Are you trying to kill me?” Amateur….
  • The day after I arrived I slept from 8 AM to 1 PM when Kiefer finally made me get up to go to the Acroplis. I said, “Are you trying to kill me?”
  • The stones at the Acropolis are very slippery. Kiefer was definitely trying to kill me.

  • Kiefer made plans to stay on the island of Milos…which meant a 4-hour ferry ride. I get motion sickness, so I said, “Are you trying to kill me?” Death by puking.
  • When a little girl hounded us to buy a fan from her and my polite declines didn’t deter her, Kiefer scolded her in Russian. The look in her eyes said, “Are you trying to kill me?”

We spent our time in Athens and on the island of Milos. And I learned a lot, such as…

  • The correct pronunciation of Greek for “please” and “thank you.”
  • You can’t take pictures in the Acropolis Museum. Oops.
A photo Misty-style.

A photo Misty-style.

  • Baklava has nuts in it; therefore, it counts as a protein. I ate a lot of protein.

#25 on my 35 Before 35 List completed!

Favorite Comment From Last Post: “I saw Home Alone as an in-flight movie once. When it was over, a kid got up and very carefully arranged a bunch of little toy cars in the plane aisle.”—Laura


Guess Who’s Back…Back From Greece

I just returned from Greece last night, so while I’m reacquainting myself with East Coast time, here’s the conversation Kiefer and I had the day I left for Greece. I’d never flown out of the country before, so I was really nervous.

Thoughtsy: Do I need to convert some money? What am I going to do while you’re working? What are we going to do while you’re not working? I am totally unprepared.

Kiefer: They take Euros here.

Thoughtsy: Soooooo…I do need to convert money?

Kiefer: I’ll give you money. And I’ve already set up a tour of the city for you because I don’t want you wandering around alone. And if you’re too tired, you can hang out by the pool or get a massage. I work one day, and then I have everything else planned out.

Thoughtsy:  You planned? ::whispers:: Pod person….

Kiefer: ::after giving me detailed instructions and confirming that he’ll pick me up from the Athens airport:: So I’ll see you in less than 24 hours. I love you. Have a good flight!

Thoughtsy: I love you, too.

Kiefer: ::pause:: You didn’t hang up, did you?

Thoughtsy: No.

Kiefer: You’re really nervous, aren’t you?

Thoughtsy: Are you sure you can’t just fly back here to the States really quickly, and then we can take my first international flight together?

Kiefer: You’re going to be fine. And you’re flying through London…where you speak the language.

Thoughtsy: But sometimes the Cockney throws me off.

Kiefer: You’re a dork. Call me if you have any problems.

Thoughtsy: What if I have a problem on the plane?

Kiefer: That’s what flight attendants are for.

Thoughtsy: Jerk….

Kiefer: You’ll be fine. You’re stronger than you think. I love you. Bye!

Thoughtsy: I love you, too.

::pause and then texting::

I can’t believe you hung up.


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