Feast and Famine 17?? to 2010

This is the grave of my great, great, grandfather Fabious Watson Hunnicutt.

His father was a farmer named Green Hunnicutt. And his father’s father was a farmer named Henry Hunnicutt.

Fabious died a wealthy man.

He served on the Confederate side of the war and was in the Calvary. He brought his own horse and tack to the effort and was paid $15 for his contribution by the Confederate States of America.

He was captured and served the yankee army by baling hay for the Union Calvary in Virginia.

I have a copy of his signed pledge of allegiance to the United States in order for him to be a free man.

After the war he became wealthy rebuilding the ruins of the south particularly in Raleigh, NC. He built Rex Hospital and Central Prison which were both major public works projects. He built many roads and sidewalks in the Capital of NC. To this day you can still see, “Old Reliable Hunnicutt of Course” stamped in ancient concrete walk ways near the Capital building.

His son Fabious Henry Hunnicutt son took over the business and lost it all in The Great Depression. His son is buried in an unmarked grave beside him.

His son was my grand father Fabious Jefferson Hunnicutt and he was a pharmacist.

His son was my father and he was a salesman and a damn funny guy. He died too young.

Then there is me. My dad and I have the same name and I am a junior.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Christmas in Dixie

This past Christmas was my first ever white Christmas. It rarely snows here and never on Christmas Day. It came late and most of these pictures were shot on the 26th by my sister in law.

A manly man working in the snow with his Dickies.

Chickens celebrating a holy day.

Back side of the old house.

Down the driveway and along the pasture.

Gigi drying off Tanner.

Tanner and Galaxy playing at the barn. They are such good friends.

Cotton kicking up a bit in the snow.

Can she still herd with three legs...you betcha!

Galaxy grinning for the camera.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Richard

This is Richard, one of the homeless men of Christiansted. He is a consumer of fine alcohol and street drugs. He is Rasta so if you want to buy him food make it a cheese sandwich or french fries...no meat. He is interesting to talk to both stoned or sober. He is a colorful dresser and accomplished percussionist.

He is not on any dental plan that I know of.


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Kind of Miss, Miss Judith

For some reason this morning I was thinking about Miss Judith. I usually see her pushing a shopping cart selling stuff in Christiansted. She is always smiling and has a quiet demeanor.

She usually shows up at the evening crab races or street festivals and sells roasted peanuts.

Miss Judith will accept tips and a cold Budweiser.


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Jesus Hung Out With Tax Collectors

I just ran my payroll for the year end 12/31 paycheck for me (Gigi) and my one employee.

I run the business and Gigi runs the household.

For over a decade I have made a payroll for us and an employee. Never has anyone missed a check even though times have been tight during that period.

Whatever I pay I have to match Social Security or go to prison. That means social security is doubled for me and anyone I pay gets matched. Keep in mind my benefits aren’t doubled....I just have to pay double. So whatever I give in salary is 7% more and I have to come up with that.

Then I give the money to the employee but then take it away and send it to the state and feds or I go to prison. What we all have left is our paycheck.

I am a tax collector...for free. No that’s not true because I pay a payroll company to do this.

I think it would do us all well if all politicians had to sustain a payroll for an extended period.

© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Rare Snowfall on Christmas

video

© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Lets write a Song Together

Sung to the Tune, The Most Wonderful Time of The Year

“The most dysfunctional time of the year!”

Help me out with some more lyrics.

© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Merry Christmas

... WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO NOON EST SUNDAY...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN GREENVILLE-SPARTANBURG HAS ISSUED A WINTER STORM WARNING FOR HEAVY SNOW... WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM NOON TODAY TO NOON EST SUNDAY. THE WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY IS NO LONGER IN EFFECT.

* LOCATIONS... THE WESTERN PIEDMONT OF NORTH CAROLINA.

* HAZARDS... HEAVY SNOW.




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What Is Normal?


This is a picture of our last holiday dinner together with the family at my house.

It is about the only time now days that I wear a suit. You see Gigi has been so busy bleaching and starching those curtains that I just couldn’t sit there in my sweatpants and tee shirt.

Then Gigi walks in and presents the turkey and all of our family guests are so supportive and appreciative.

We have brought out our finest tableware because I know that deep in their hearts they appreciate the occasion.

All of the logical family generations seated before us beam in anticipation.

You see a meal is more than nourishing the body. It is an event, a gathering, a peaceful time of breaking bread, sharing and laughter.

Sounds about right, peaceful, joyful, laughter, supportive. Yep, this family eludes me mostly but it is Christmas and it is all I have.

Enjoy your Christmas.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

In 51 Days

This is a happy man...photo taken last September in ST Croix. I have on my favorite things and am nearly as comfortable as being naked and not nearly as offensive as it would be seeing me naked. .

I have a cold beer in my hand and my iPhone in the other hand. I am standing on the winding road that leads sharply downhill to the tidal pools.

I appear to be eating my lips however it is my natural instincts kicking in to suppress joyful screaming.

I am warm, I have salt and sweat on my skin, and I am surrounded by lush green tropics. I am anticipating a warm soothing swim at the bottom of this hill and I am ever so happy.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Christmas

Christmas is the only holiday that inclement weather is ideal weather. Nobody hopes for thunderstorms on Independence Day.

And who besides me is sick of the holiday car commercials? Who ever got a new car for Christmas? Especially a Lexis? Wrapped in fleece?


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

So I'm Writing About Weather?

I like weather. It varies enough around here that a five day forecast can be interesting.

I especially like it when something extreme is coming up.

Online I use Accuweather, Weather Underground, NOAA, and Weather dot com and then decide for myself what the weather will be. I think Accuweather is the most accurate around here.

When I was a kid we had three sources of weather; the newspaper, the radio and the local 6 PM television news. That was it and it was all dated by the time I saw it.

The TV guy, Skip Carpenter, wasn’t a meteorologist just a TV personality like the sports guy wasn’t an athlete. The weatherman drew weather maps on a big cartoon map of the US with a big fat magic marker.

I cartoon map and magic marker was the technology of the day until the giant leap to “Probability of Precipitation” came on the scene when the National Weather service assigned a percentage to whether it was going to rain or not.

I guess that was their way of telling the public, “You figure it out.”


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Bugs Under My Rock

It is kind of strange that recently I have picked up a solid dozen new readers of my blog when the trend for personal blogs is so 2008.

I know all of them. They read and never comment. Occasionally they will call me about a post. They tend to be more vocal in their opinion but never take the time to write.

And they remember stuff I write and recall it back to me.

What most of them have in common is they want to remain anonymous and unseen. But they love to pry up my rock and look for bugs.

That's all fine by me. For some reason I gotta be out there and they don’t.

Thanks for stopping by.

© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Family

For those who wondered...I actually have a mother and two sisters. I’m the tall guy.



© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Cloud Juice

I woke up last night in kind of a semi state of consciousness and I was thirsty. I wanted 100% pure cloud juice and nothing else would do.

For some reason my brain had reprogrammed refreshing cloud juice as the only solution.

I grabbed a bottle, uncapped it and drank deeply. The cloud was becoming part of me and I was becoming part of the cloud.

I woke up and thought this was a dream until I saw 2 empty water bottles by my bed side table.



© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

I love Winter

These cold days of winter make me glad I have this trip coming up. We almost didn’t make the trip this winter but decided at the last minute to go. Last minute to plan a good trip was in October. Usually we have plans squared away by July.

I found a small place for Gigi and I and we will be on the same end of the island as our usual group.

Yesterday I called about a rental car and provisioning the house.

Last night I dreamed about diving.



© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

The Christmas Package

A package arrived yesterday addressed to me. It is always exciting to get an unexpected parcel. Kinda of the opposite of a certified letter. Nothing good ever comes from a certified letter.

It was carefully wrapped with duck tape too.


Inside held morsels from the rich California soil and abundant summer sunshine. Fresh walnuts from Phrankie.


They are ever so meaty. I am a lucky man. Thank you.




© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Compuserve

I go way back online and still remember my first email address, 75037.1171@compuserve.com. They charged me by the hour for connectivity. This was the early 90's when true nerd pioneers like me flourished.

By the mid 90's the world wide web weaned me off of an old friend. Those were fast times with Netscape and Windows 3.14.

Remember the awful noise your modem made when it was connecting?


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A Cultural Moment




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My Pick Up

I get my money’s worth from my big red pickup. Saturday it was outfitted with scuba gear and celebratory beer afterwards. Sunday it is a tailgate platform with grills, steamers, food, tent shelter, and stove tops.

Inside it is an old friend equipped with whatever I need. I can listen to St Croix Radio Stations, fire weather and traffic, Bloomberg radio, AM/FM/iPod, a GPS, updated sound, and plenty of cab room for stuff. Heck I even have TV on my iPhone.

At times it is a work horse towing my RV or horse trailer.

It has been the last ride of my dying dogs on the way to the vet or a complete joy ride for my dogs in the country.

Today it will be my commuter truck to the office.

Big Red is creeping up 250,000 miles. He’s starting to have some serious medical bills but for now I am aiming to keep him in top running shape. The alternative is a $50,000 truck with payments to go along. No thanks.



© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Miracles Do Happen


We thought we'd seen everything in politics, but yesterday was truly miraculous: There in the White House press room was none other than former Democratic President Bill Clinton appearing with current Democratic President Barack Obama to endorse the tax cuts of Republican George W. Bush. - Wall Street Journal


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

A Dive Anyone?

Today is 12-11-10 in American circles. I know you Europeans mix it up a bit on dates.

Also today I continue training for operation Grey Goose. I will do some classroom and three quarry dives to get certified in using a dry scuba suit. Diving dry takes away the chill and I have discovered cold water diving as fun as warm water as long as I stay warm.

Plus visibility in these parts is far better after the algae dies off and the water settles from fewer divers stirring up the water.

Why doesn’t everyone do it? Well they don’t rent dry suits and they are expensive to buy compared to wet suits. So most folks opt for the return of summer and hang up the fins in the winter.

I have tentatively pencilled in Operation Grey Goose for January 23, 2011. Operation Grey Goose will be a dive in the waters of Smith Mountain Lake with two other divers to recover a bottle of Grey Goose that went down when my brother in law’s boat sank in 2005.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

The Bounty


Upon coming back from the NC tour I traded eggs and Miss Anna’s Hot sauce for shelled pecans, oysters, and shrimp stock.

A note about the shrimp stock (not pictured). Shrimp stock is made from rendering shrimp heads down to a think liquid after at least 8 hours of cooking. The stock pot will retain the smell after many washings.

Recipe to follow. I hear it is very good.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

A Day on the Road

In my business I will follow leads and instincts that force me on the road sometimes. Usually these ventures are profitable and as always self funded.

I hit the road yesterday morning and got a call on the way to Durham... made enough money on the call and subsequent trade to more than pay for my fuel, hotel and food over the next few days. That was blind luck I get my road trip financed and help out a guy.

I had lunch with my mother and sister at my mother’s home.

Then on to Knightdale where the real pay dirt is. This guy is huge and the planning is slow so maybe this will pay off next year....I am patient. We talk, I gather information, give him fresh eggs and he give me freshly shelled pecans from his farm. We agree to meet again.

The meeting didn’t go exactly as I wanted but the relationship is more solid now.

It is dark now so I decide to head toward the coast for tomorrows meeting. Tomorrows meeting would have paid for the trip if it wasn’t already so this is gravy.

Before I leave I see an email that needs attention so I pull in a Bob Evans to steal Wifi and have a cup of coffee. Oh what the hell...pumpkin pie too.

From Raleigh to Wilmigtion is like the autobahn. 75 MPH and the only thing to watch for is deer. I cover 100 miles in no time.

Then as I approach Wilmington I fire up the Priceline app on my iPhone and find the nicest hotel for the bet price. It is a Courtyard Marriot for 65 a night. Not bad at all. As a bonus it is beside a Cracker Barrel and Ruby Tuesdays making hunting and gathering an ease.

As lazy as I can be I ordered a Pizza from Dominos watch some TV and drift off for a fitful nights sleep.

Why in the hell doesn’t Dominos bring napkins on a delivery? I feel creepy using a wash cloth as a napkin.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Old and New is Much The Same

When I was a kid we had an old AM country radio station nearby where we could just walk in and see the teletype machines churning away. One was from Associated Press, One from United Press International and a third was a CBS radio feed.

I would read all the news and weather and sports almost live and I thought it was so cool.

So yesterday I heard an older fellow ( maybe 70) ask a young woman (maybe 23) if she used Facebook and why.

She tried to explain in her vernacular and he tried to understand in 1950’s technical terms.

So I turned to him to intervene and used some 1960’s technology to bridge the gap.

Fred, Facebook is like old fashioned teletype except everyone has one. You get news feeds from everyone you are friends with. There is no mound of paper just computer screens.

I saw the light go off for Fred and the young woman clearly was frustrated and looked at me like “whatever”.

© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

Sobering News

I had one of those major adult situations yesterday...the kind when you are faced with something that is unstoppable, you don’t like it, and you have to deal with it.

My business partner’s cancer has returned and it is more aggressive than last time.

So we talked, made some short term plans, laughed a little and then some “what if” and longer term scenarios. We know this round will be a much more difficult battle.

Still all day the sobering news kept running through my mind.

I have known him for 24 years. I saw his kids grow up and have kids. I saw wife one and current wife two. He is the one who talked me into going to St Croix the first time.

Situations like this cause me to pause and take a look at life and how fragile and quick our visit here is.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

I Need Fresh Air

I like my air moving. Anywhere I am there you’ll find a fan nearby. I sleep with a ceiling fan. I don’t mind being hot but I can’t stand to be stuffy.

That’ll do.


© 2010 wReggie’s I’m Always Mentally on Vacation. These Terms and Conditions of Use apply to you when you view, access or otherwise use the blog located at www.wreggie.com (the “blog”). Terms and Conditions can be found at http://reghunnicutt.com/terms.html.

wReggie’s wRoasted Chicken



I was chatting with a blogger colleague yesterday and the subject of roasted chicken came up. He does some fantastic looking chicken on his out door cooking contraption. I do fantastic roast chicken on my grill. But I also do some mighty fine chicken in a roaster.

So with roasted chicken on the brain I went to the store to procure a bird and noticed that an organic whole chicken is selling for $17. I personally have 11 head of chicken so that is another $187 that will get added to my net worth statement next time I’m at the bank.

The chicken I purchased was a factory chicken for $6.44. Since it was sleeting outside I opted for the roaster in the warm in doors.

I washed the chicken and added the seven secret ingredients. I toss in the giblets cause they are so damn good. I could have saved the parts for a gizzard transplant but decided my chickens are healthy now and didn’t need any spare parts.

Then I covered the chicken and put it in a 350 oven and poured a glass of wine...for me, not the chicken.


Yes that roaster looks dirty but it’s not. It has cooked decades of chickens and those brown spots just won’t scrub out.

The waiting begins....heavenly aromas drift in the living room.

21/2 hours later and it is falling off the bone. Oh sweet Melissa!

© 2010 wReggie’s Mental Vacation. Man oh man this chicken smells good!

Diving in Winter

Vladimir wReggie’s return from Soyuz 65? No.

Yesterday was December 3 and it was 27 degrees when I woke up... and I went scuba diving in the quarry.

How I did it and not die?

Remember the dry suit I said I wanted? Well I finally sprung for it and it arrived yesterday. A dry suit allows one to dive and stay dry.

I met my dive buddy at the quarry at 9AM. The air had warmed to the low 30’s. The surface temperature of the water was 60 and it went down from there. At the bottom is a constant 45 year around.

A dry suit has built in boots to size and rubber seals around each arm hole and the neck. One climbs in through the front zipper, gets the feet settled, then the arms through the holes and then the head. Then each seal is inspected to make sure everything is seated.

In the suit I wore two pairs of heavy socks, long underwear, a long sleeve tee shirt and a sweat shirt and sweat pants.

Lastly the whole thing is zipped up with a waterproof zipper and the rest hooking up a pressure hose and then the usual stuff.

I went in the water and was amazed to realize it actually worked. As I got deeper the water would squeeze on the suit and I would allow bursts of air in to push back. This is a bit tricky and will take some practice. The way to exit air is through a valve on my left shoulder. So I had to keep my body aligned so that the left shoulder was the high point when I wanted to bleed off some air.

The hood is not the proper hood for the suit so that will have to be changed but otherwise I am very happy to be able to dive now in cold water up to freezing with as much clothing as I need to stay warm.


WARNING - Side effects may include: gas with oily discharge, headache or diarrhea.