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We got off to a late start out of Columbia, but were able to make up some time by flying through the night. We arrived in Norfolk around 6am on Tuesday (I was awake...never sleep well during spotting).

The Norfolk yard is gigantic. Luckily we are parked near an exit road, so it wouldn't be too terrible if we decided to take a walk. This entire yard is used solely for shipping coal, can you believe it??

Once I realized that there was no internet at the yard (again), I caught the bus and hoofed it over to the MacArthur Center to make use of the wifi. Playing Ingress on the way, of course.

After the mall I hit a Harris Teeter, then returned to the train to unpack and relax.

The next day was a dark day! The weather was a little crummy, so I used it to catch up on laundry and try my hand at cooking stir fry. It turned out edible but the veggies were overcooked. Next time I'll remove the veggies sooner and change the sauce (it was too salty).

That night I joined our trainmaster Brett, Eryn (teacher), Corrine (a 1st of May), and Dan, a CFA member who lives in Virginia. Dan has been to many Ringling shows over the years and enjoys hanging out with circus people. On Dan's recommendation, we went to The Bier Garden in Portsmouth for some authentic German eats! I had a stuffed bell pepper on spaetzle with marinara and a side of purple cabbage. Coupled with a Munich Gold beer and the great company, it was a pretty fantastic dinner!

The next day was opening day. During the break between the rehearsal and the show, Jameson treated me to dinner at Sushi King. Yum! In the mail I received an "Easter basket" from my parents full of fancy treats...chocolate covered nuts, taffy, gourmet popcorn, and more. Thank you Mom and Dad! You spoil me! That night we had an awesome crowd, really energetic and noisy. I love doing shows for people who are into it!

On Friday we only had one show. I woke late and eventually got dressed and went downtown to see the USS Wisconsin BB-64, which is part of the Hampton Roads Navy Museum. The battleship saw action in WWII, the Korean War, and the Gulf War. It was one of the last battleships produced in the world. I didn't go up on the deck, but admired the huge ship from the walkway.

It was impossible to get the whole thing into a photo!!!

Then it was back to the mall to pay my bills, update my devices and partially write this blog. I did all of that in the Barnes & Noble, where I discovered that my favorite author has released a new book!! Coincidentally my grandparents sent me a B&N gift card for Easter. I used it to buy an e-version of the book. Thank you Gramps and Grandma!! As a final treat-to-self, I visited Lush for some bar soap. I don't usually go in for fancy upscale soaps...but just this once, why not!

Around that time I got a text from Jameson saying he'd meet me at the mall...with our new routers!
It has recently become more and more aggravating to deal with a lack of internet each week. ClearWire started out as a good service, but ever since they were bought by Sprint they've gotten worse and worse. We were lucky to be next to a mall this week, otherwise I wouldn't have been able to pay my bills or submit the band's rehearsal hours. So Jameson and I are switching to another provider. We shared a meal in the food court, then went back to the arena to charge the routers and prepare for the show. I was met with yet another pleasant surprise: Richard, our Jack-of-all-trades here on the circus, delivered the embroidered hoodie that I'd ordered from him last week. It's true that this is the Red Unit, but I prefer the color blue ;) Thanks Richard!!

On Saturday I came in early to rent a car. I'm going to visit my aunt in Cary, NC over this next train run. After retrieving the car I had some free time, so visited the tiger run. It's in a public area this week since there's Animal Open House. I got some nice pictures of one of our young tigers playing with a ball.

As you can see in the second picture, he's got his claws. They all do. Yeek!!

We had three shows and they were going fine up until the last one. The BMX bike ramps weren't assembling/lining up properly, and rather than risk the bikers' safety the act was cut at the last minute. We had to skip straight to Finale. I felt really bad for the audience, but there was no avoiding it this time. Safety first. Sorry :/

On Sunday, two shows and then I drive to NC to visit my aunt :)
Next we go to Hampton VA, where I hope to visit with some of my Busch Gardens friends!

Other stuff:

USA Today came backstage to interview Taylor the Boss Clown, Gemma the Human Cannon, and David the Ringmaster. CLICK HERE to watch!

Ryan (sound crew) took a fast-motion video of our crew loading in. It's amazing how much work these guys and gals do every week!

This week we celebrated Mabel's 9th birthday!! She didn't get a pie to the face (lucky) but instead a cake covered in fresh veggies and surrounded by sweet corn! She made short work of it, but it looks like she had to share :P

(photos courtesy Adria)

Siam is selling programs. You know you want one!
(photo courtesy Ryan H)

The Scope looks like a giant jellyfish or a spaceship, your choice.

The water in the fountain out front was dyed blue. Why...?


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Apr. 14th, 2015 12:30 pm (UTC)
Nice hoodie!

That food looks so good aakgkgsdkgj I'm hungry now!
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )