Atlanta cont'd

Trip Start Sep 07, 2007
Trip End Jan 12, 2008

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Flag of United States  , Georgia
Saturday, October 6, 2007

So Atlanta was kind of a bust. There were some highlights, but we hit some bumps as well. First of all, Albert's desktop computer exploded. He had his laptop as well, which he needed for work, but the desktop was for my use, as well as his video editing. He owes a wedding video to a couple who were married nearly a year ago. Time constraints have made it very difficult for him to get it done (thus the whole year later) but he finally had it almost complete. Unfortunately, the video, and all the software and hardware necessary to finish it and burn it to DVD and make it viewable, was all in that computer. Plus our whole history of digital pictures and music. All gone, because the motherboard spontaneously combusted. This was a source of major stress. Not only for him, but for the couple who has been begging for their video! And me, because I've had no access to a computer, which has made it impossible to add updates to this blog. What a drag.
Our next bump in the road has been the fact that we got sick. Not a huge deal, just no fun. And it meant that we really didn't make it to all the meetings or out in service in Atlanta. So we feel a bit low. Our next bump-remember that check engine light that went on the very first day of the trip? Ummm....we sort of ignored it. We knew it was a blown glowplug (similar to a spark plug) and Buck (our land lord and a truck driver for 47 years) had told us it wasn't a big deal. But we finally decided to get the thing taken care of. After examining it, the mechanics told us they believed there was an underlying problem that was going to cost us nearly $1500.00. Ouch! This after we had thought we were going to need all new tires on the trailer to the tune of $1200.00. Fortunately the tire guys decided the tires were fine. Whew! So we're trying to figure out how we're going to pay for this expensive repair. The mechanics kept the truck all day Thursday, and half a day Friday, only to finally decide that the problem was-surprise-a blown glowplug. Ugh. A good result, but still-ugh.
So now the good news. Albert was able to purchase some sort of external thingamajig for the computer and could then successfully extract the info he needed and put it into his laptop. The video is saved! He's just about done with it now. He still needs to buy some other part that will enable him to burn it onto a DVD, but apparently this is doable. 
So we missed the meeting last Sunday because I was having one of those difficult days where my pain and fatigue issues were at a peak. However, we were able to call in and listen over the telephone line to our own Arcadia congregation! It's amazing how Jehovah knows just what we need and when. We were feeling so bad about not going to the local meeting, but having the option to call in home turned out to be such a blessing. We loved hearing all the voices of our loved ones back home. There was great participation at the Watchtower study that day! Even normally shy Tim Cook commented! As each different person was called on, we were able to think about what that person looked like, what kind of personality they have, what challenges they face, all these things that make each person so valuable to us. We really miss everybody so it was just what we needed. We felt so uplifted!
So Monday we did manage to make it to the Book Study at the East Marietta congregation. As always, we were welcomed warmly, and it was nice to be among friends. I kept getting distracted by this cute little boy named Jayden. He just looked too cute with that binky hanging out of his mouth. But I did manage to pay attention and Albert and I both were able to participate quite a bit. Afterwards, I made service plans with a sister named Mandy. Her husband was the Book Study overseer and he invited us to go out to dinner with them after the School and Service meeting on Wednesday. This gave us something to look forward to since we love getting to know people better.

Tuesday was our fun day. Albert didn't have any training sessions planned for that day, so he didn't have to go in to the office. So we decided to go to the new Georgia Aquarium in downtown Atlanta. Albert's company had a hand in the design of the interior systems, so he had extra interest on top of our love for looking at critters. It was a really neat aquarium. They had a huge octopus there who was really active! She was moving all over the place in her tank. Even several of the workers there came to watch because apparently she normally hides in a corner where she can barely be seen and doesn't move at all. So this was a treat. Also, the hammerhead shark gave us a great show. He too is normally hard to even see. They had both sea otters and river otters, all of which were just so much fun. And we saw the courting rituals of beluga whales. The aquarium people are hoping there will be a little whale in the not-to-distant future! And, for those of you who know about my obsession with turtles, you know that the giant sea turtle gave me quite a thrill.

That night, we went to a Caribbean restaurant called Bahama Breeze. We found ourselves jealous of the yummy-looking crab legs that the sea otters were eating and decided we needed seafood for dinner. Terrible, I know. We had been to this restaurant before, on a previous business trip, and enjoyed it so much that we figured we'd go again. We shared an appetizer of blue crab claws, cooked in a very rich and flavorful Jamaican sauce.
Then we had pan-fried tilapia cooked with a chorizo/chipotle salsa. Yum. And I had my first mojito. I think I have a new favorite drink. We finished off with a chocolate pineapple upside down cake. Good, but almost too rich.
So after this fun day, we headed home. Right as we were pulling into our campsite, I started coughing. It wasn't long before it had developed into that deep, loud painful cough that I get at least once a year. The next morning I found that I had to cancel my service plans because my lungs were shot. Very disappointing. And that night, Albert came home congested and feverish. This has been our state for the last several days. Albert had to call in sick on his last day, Friday, but at least all the training had been finished on Thursday. 

Oh, by the way, for those who care (and you know who you are) there's a Waffle House right across the street from the campground! We wandered over there for dinner Thursday night since we felt too icky to cook. Those pecan waffles are so good! We'll have to make a habit of that place.

So that was Atlanta! Hopefully the next phase will be healthier. We will drive to Greensboro, NC tomorrow, spend the night, and then drive on to Washington, DC on Sunday. Actually, it's Fairfax, VA, but Albert's company refers to it as the DC office. We'll be there for 2 weeks. My how time is flying!
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