Jury Duty

Yesterday I had jury duty up in downtown Miami. It was my first jury duty in almost 6 years. I was part of the manic Miami morning rush hour yesterday. It took me about an hour and 20 minutes to drive 30 miles. That was rather reasonable. Traffic was heavy (as expected), and I actually gave myself up to 2 hours to drive that 30 miles. If I had left 20 or more minutes later – I probably would’ve needed all 2 hours.

In the large jury pool room I pretty much read the current issue of a magazine that I brought with me (AAA Living), and I spent quality time on social media on my old iPad Mini connected to the unstable / unsecure public WiFi. Oh yeah – and I also glanced up at the TVs that were playing continuous family-friendly (and forgettable) romantic dramedy movies – a couple of which starred Diane Keaton. Isn’t that the only type of movie she plays in nowadays ?

A lot of people got selected for various trials by jury, but I was not one of them. At the end of the day I received my certificate of participation, and my civic duty was done for the year.

Happy π Day my friends. This entry kicks-off a fresh new weekend of blog posts. Tomorrow night I’m going #RETRO (as I usually do on Friday nights), but this week I’m not revisiting 2009, 1999, or 1989. In honor of Saint Patrick’s Day in a few days I’ll be celebrating the most Irish song to ever crack my Top 5, and I’ll share a little story behind the song.

All rights reserved (c) 2019 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Venice Florida

Venice

This is Venice Florida. I’ve never been there before, but in about 2½ months I’ll arrive and explore this quaint seaside city of about 23,000.

Every couple of years or so – generally before Spring Break (February) – or after Spring Break and before Summer Vacation (late-April / early-May) – I visit a new city in Florida that I’ve never been to before – or haven’t been to in many years. I’ve lived here for over 31 of my nearly 52 years, and there are large chunks of Florida that I’ve never seen before. In 2017 it was Lakeland / Bartow (east of Tampa). In 2016 – Saint Augustine (south of Jacksonville).

So this year it’s Venice – “The Shark Tooth Capital Of The World”. I’ll do a lot of walking – walking along the sandy surf of the Gulf Of Mexico, walking up and down Venice Avenue to and from the historic downtown district, and walking into restaurants I’ve never heard of before to enjoy some fine foods (probably Italian).

I’ll take a lot of pictures too, and many of them will ultimately end up on my Flickr Photostream. That reminds me – my Flickr has been very active lately with new photos being added almost daily. You can check out the last 5 photos added right here at revchrismday.com, or you can check out my full Flickr Photostream.

All rights reserved (c) 2019 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Sebring Strong

moon over sebring

Yesterday afternoon after I got home from work I sat down at my computer to begin my normal routine. I brought up Twitter to catch-up on the latest tweets, and I glanced over to see what was trending. I saw Sebring over there. For a second I thought it was trending simply because I’ve tweeted a lot recently about Sebring. But then I saw why Sebring was trending. There was a mass shooting at a bank during the busy lunch hour in Sebring where 5 innocent lives were lost. This bank is about a half-mile (within eyesight) from the hotel I stayed at for 3 nights this past Christmas.

I then Googled Sebring Florida to read and see all of the shocking and horrific details of the day. I shed tears, and I lifted-up Sebring Florida in prayer to my Lord & Comforter Jesus Christ.

Sadly the entire nation has now heard of Sebring Florida, and they’ve seen a map of the state to see where it’s located at, as well as photos and videos and live reports of the deadly scene.

I had never heard of Sebring Florida up until just a few years ago. Then I started driving through it over and over again to and from North Florida and beyond. The more I drove through Sebring – the more I admired it from my car. Sebring intrigued me. It piqued my interest. I decided that I needed an extended visit in Sebring to discover and explore the area. That time was this past Christmas. My suspicions were confirmed. I fell in love with the city, its places, and its people. I confirmed that I want to retire there in a few years, and I want to live the rest of my life there. I think I already know where exactly (the specific neighborhood) I wish to live. I also think I know where I wish to work part-time and volunteer (two separate places) – to keep me busy. On my next visit I hope to find a church family there. I can’t wait to get back up there. I’m looking forward to taking-in the sights and sounds of Sebring.

The peaceful and quiet “forgotten” town of Sebring Florida – nowhere near any Interstate highway or expressway – just experienced perhaps its deadliest and most violent day in its 107-year history. I am in deep sorrow alongside my future neighbors – from 180 miles away.

God blesses those who mourn – for they will be comforted. (Matthew 5:4 NLT)

#SebringStrong #HighlandsStrong

All rights reserved (c) 2019 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

The Major’s Top 5 Hits RETRO – 1989

Every Friday night I post the Top 5 of one of my classic hit music charts based on personal preference and influenced by radio airplay from either 10, 20, or 30 years ago (rotating each week). Here it is – for the week ending Sunday January 15TH 1989:

  1. “She Wants To Dance With Me” – Rick Astley
  2. “Smooth Criminal” – Michael Jackson
  3. “Love Bites” – Def Leppard
  4. “The Promise” – When In Rome
  5. “Waiting For A Star To Fall” – Boy Meets Girl

30 years ago this weekend Rick Astley scored his 4TH # 1 smash on my chart, Michael Jackson scored his 2ND # 2 smash on my chart, and Def Leppard reached # 3 with “Love Bites” in its 22ND week on my chart.

I was listening to all 3 of those big hits on South Florida’s heritage Top 40 station Y-100 – in a new car !  That’s the answer to my teaser from yesterday’s blog post. After a little over 13 months of essentially riding a 10-speed bike all around Homestead AFB I decided to buy my first brand new car of my life. I bought a shiny red 1989 Geo Spectrum. I was free at last – free to flee the base and drive the mean streets of South Florida for the first time ever. So I’ve now been driving for the past 30 years, I’m on my 6TH new car, and I’m approaching 330,000 miles driven – an average of just shy of 11,000 miles per year.

I’m 51½ now, so I bought my first new car at 21½. YES – I drove as a teenager too. I used my newspaper carrier money to buy a used (no frills) 1980 Chevy Citation in 1983. I got to drive around in that for a couple of years through my first 5 months in the Air Force. In November of 1985 I was sent to the United Kingdom, and I sold my car. I never drove in the U.K., but one of my friends did. I wouldn’t drive again until 30 years ago this weekend.

It’s halftime my friends. I’ll be back on Sunday with an all-new blog post. Enjoy your Saturday.

All rights reserved (c) 2019 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

UberChristian

I had my very first (and only so far) Uber experience earlier this year after returning from a Disney cruise at PortMiami. The entire experience was wonderful, and my Uber driver and I had a pleasant conversation for about 9 miles. I’ll definitely use Uber again in the future.

Now if UberChristian were a real thing …

 

The weekend is just getting started. I’m going RETRO back to 2008 tomorrow night.

Home Sweet Home

Saturday March 05TH 2011
Volume 3 / Number 16 / Edition 113

20 years ago this upcoming week I went on a roughly 10,000-mile trek as I returned home stateside from Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm.

The trek began bright and early at 0326 local time on Saturday March 09TH 1991 at Al Kharj AB Saudi Arabia. After a 7-hour and 7-minute flight westbound we touched down at Torrejon AB Spain (near Madrid). The layover was unexpectedly long – nearly 5½-hours. After that it was a 9-hour flight across the Atlantic Ocean and into Dover AFB Delaware. After a long 21½-hour day of travel I was finally back in the U.S.A. for the first time in over 2 months. After a restful night at a nice hotel in Philadelphia we flew back to Miami and then returned to Homestead AFB on the morning of Sunday March 10TH 1991. We pretty much snuck onto the base with absolutely no fanfare whatsoever. Future Gulf War returnees would be treated to celebrations and parades, but my group received nothing – aside from the rest of the month off in rest and recuperation to do whatever we felt like doing !

I felt like returning to my home-of-record up in the Washington D.C. area to spend a couple of weeks with my Dad, Mom, Brother, and two cats – and so I did. 3 days after returning to Homestead AFB from Saudi Arabia I drove 1,096 miles over 17 hours (spanning 2 days) up I-95 and back to my real home at the time. It was perhaps the greatest homecoming to my parent’s home that I’ve ever experienced in my entire lifetime – a Gulf War Veteran returning home.

People sometimes ask me what I did in the war. I actually had 2 separate jobs while serving in the desert. For 23 days I built fuel tanks. I wasn’t good at it. The 11 that I worked with thought that I was pretty much awful at it. I agreed. We parted ways. I eventually found my mad skills building BOMBS !  That’s what I did for 24 days. I loved it. I was also pretty good at it. I quickly realized that bombs were so much easier to make than fuel tanks. Who knew ?

Saturday Night Retro

Saturday November 13TH 2010
Volume 3 / Number 10 / Edition 107

Back during the Summer of 2004 I was living in my current home and driving around in my current car, but things were a bit different back then than they are now.

At home I had a vibrant cat by the name of Boots following me around and loving me. On the road I was driving around in my fairly new (one-year-old) car. On one particular road trip that Summer I drove further west than I had ever previously driven in my entire life – all the way to New Orleans and back. It was my very first visit ever to ‘The Crescent City’, and I got to see and experience it a full year before Hurricane Katrina damaged it.

Back then my Mom and Dad were healthy and living and working in Jacksonville Florida, and my brother was still married to his first wife and living near Columbus Ohio. My Grandmom died that Summer in Maryland at the age of 88. I got to see her one last time during the Summer prior (in 2003). It was my first visit back to the Washington D.C. area since 1996, and I haven’t been back since.

The more things change – the more they stay the same. My cat died. My Dad has passed on. My Mom is now retired and living in Fairview Texas about 5 miles away from my brother. He’s been happily married to his 2ND wife for the past 3½-years, and they have a beautiful 7-month-old daughter (my niece). Still living with them – Buddy – the dog that was featured on my blog post from last night. I’ll be there in just about 5 days to enjoy the holidays with all of them !

When I look back at the Summer of 2004 I hear this song in the background. It seems so long ago. It seems like I lived it in a previous life.

I’ve found a reason for me
To change who I used to be
A reason to start over new
And the reason is You.

2004 FACTOID OF LIFEMyspace replaced AOL as the hottest place to hang out online. It began AOL’s long descent from its lofty peaks of 2002 that continues to this day. I was dragged onto Myspace in 2007 – and then quickly abandoned.

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