However, in the House of Felagund, Halloween is a month-long festival rather than a single paltry day. Halloween is my favorite holiday, and I just asked Bobby and he says that he likes Halloween about the same amount as Christmas. So we go a little crazy.
At the moment, our apartment is decorated with:
- one string of jack-o-lantern lights on the balcony
- one jack-o-lantern on the balcony
- one jack-o-lantern kite thingy from the Kite Loft in Ocean City on the balcony
- five Halloween bears on the CD/DVD shelf
- one gargoyle on the TV
- two tombstones on the TV
- one jack-o-lantern on the TV
- one jack-o-lantern pillow on the couch
- one ghosty pillow on the couch
- one ghost-shaped candle holder on the end table
- one Halloween candle on the end table
- one orange candy bowl with a protruding hand that grabs you when you take a piece of candy
- one plastic ghost inherited from my grandmother on the front door
I must say that this weekend made up for the prior craptastic weekend. Even the weekend movie was ten times better than Flyboys. Saturday night, we saw Invincible. Now, I am naturally biased toward football movies (since I'm a bit nutty about football), but I can usually critique them nonetheless. But I loved Invincible. I will review it later.
Sunday was our last classroom/confined water dive for scuba training.
Last week, I'd had a really hard time with the no-mask swim, namely because I tend to sniff water up my nose and try to drown myself. I will admit that I was dreading this weekend and having to do it again. It was the final confined water dive; my final chance. We went twice to the pool to practice with snorkels, and I spent the week in frequent meditation, trying to relax myself in conjunction with visualizing the exercise. I managed--by Saturday night--to condition relaxation to the breathing pattern I used while removing the mask. Still, there is a difference between doing an exercise with a snorkel in 3 ft/1 m of water and doing the exercise weighted on the bottom of a 13 ft/4.1 m pool with a regulator.
First, we had our last classroom lesson, and Bobby and I both passed our final exam. I missed one question of forty: labeling the parts of the regulator. The photocopy was crappy, and too late, I remembered that I could trace the length of the hose to tell the difference between the primary and alternate air source (since the alternate is significantly longer). Ah well. 39/40 ain't bad!
Then we went to the pool. We didn't have much left to do, and while I was doing the BCD replacement on the surface, Bill remarked how much calmer I was this week. Well, I told him, last week was just a bad week. He laughed and said that we're all allowed one or two every now and then.
We ended up with lots of play time on the bottom of the pool to practice whatever we wanted, so Bobby and I did a lot of buoyancy exercises. Then Bill motioned me to come and do the no-mask swim. I did my relaxation exercise, exhaled through my nose quickly, took off my mask, and went. In what felt like a few seconds, Bill was handing my mask back to me, and it was over...and it was easier than even with the snorkel.
So, Bobby and I have both passed all of our written and confined-water tests. This weekend, we will do our four open water dives at the quarry, and then, we will be open-water certified! I was so excited and relieved when we got out of the pool yesterday. And even better than knowing that I survived the no-mask swim, I could do it easily again if I had to. (Though it is not part of the open-water exercises. We have to do no-mask breathing but not swimming.)
Potter came over yesterday to hang out. I tend to be really picky about RL friends; people get on my nerves far too easily. But Potter is different, probably because he doesn't annoy me or demand my undivided attention and is an unofficial member of the House of Felagund. We put the football game on, I worked on the computer, Bobby took a nap, and Potter read The Hockey News. Life was good.
And, speaking of football, how 'bout them there Ravens, hon? Look who's 4 and 0!
The game was great. The San Diego Chargers totally owned us for the first 90% of the game. But the Ravens have always been a second-half team, and with only a few minutes left on the clock, McNair orchestrated a drive that ended in a touchdown pass thrown to Todd Heap with thirty seconds left on the clock. We went wild. San Diego had thirty seconds to work with, but the defense--not surprisingly--held. In fact, the last play was a spectacular sack, so the Ravens won 16-13 and remain undefeated, hon! And in first place for the Division!
As for Steelers *snerk*...no comment.
Bobby and Potter went ice skating that evening so that Bobby could test his new skates (which he loves), then I met them for a late, late supper at Rocky Run. It was a great weekend!
Today, I finished another good chunk of a Haunted Tuesday story, then Bobby and I took a short hike at Patapsco Valley (Cascading Falls Trail) and had supper at The Trolley Stop. We've been lounging around since, tinkering with our computers and watching Monday Night Football.
Oh, and Bobby is starting with a new hockey team. He is no longer a member of Your Team Name Here (or whatever they are called this season) but part of the Baltimore Piranhas. Shall we compare?
|Your Team Name Here||Baltimore Piranhas|
|C-League team||B-League team|
|Plays at Ice World, an hour drive away||Plays at Piney Orchard, a fifteen-minute drive away|
|Allows teams to bring in ringers to give an unfair advantage||Actually checks and follows the team roster|
|Three teams in the league||Eight teams in the league|
|Teams don't get practice time||Teams get a practice time|
|Ice time is usually after 9 p.m.||Ice time is usually before 9 p.m.|
|Ice time is all days of the week||Ice time is usually on Sundays|
|Costs $400||Costs $425|
Yeah. Was there even a question?