18 Jul 2007 The Swirling Brain   » (Master)

Saw the movie The Island. I liked it a lot for the body harvesting swirling brain plot but at the chase scenes, it got boring. Ewen McGregor from StarWars and Dr. Flox from Enterprise was in it as well as a couple of other cameos. It reminded me a lot of Logan's run. I'd give it a 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Saw the movie Ghost Rider. It was cheesy devilish fun. It sort of burns me up that it was too cheesy and too devilish so I'll give it a 2.5 out of 5 stars.

Got back from OK and NY! We got to see the statue of liberty. We didn't ferry out to it so it was sort of off in the distance but we did get to see it! Cool. We wanted to park down there but one parking garage said $245 per day and another said $269 per day! We found one that said $8.25 for the first half hour! I'm wondering how much it would be for the second. We didn't have time that day so we just went on back and didn't park down there. We found out later that we should have parked outside Manhatten and taken the train down if we wanted to walk around down there. Maybe next time.

When we arrived in Upstate New York, we stopped by the software install site so we'd know where to go the next day, then, we just went for a drive. Within a minute or two, we saw one of those ?Ascetic? Jews. You know, the ones with the black hats, black outfits and the hair locks down to their shoulders like you'd see in the movies. Of course that's unusual to see in Texas so that sort of stuck out to us. Well, so anyway, we saw another and then another and then another, etc. We probably saw about 50 or so. We had driven right into a Jewish village! We saw them walking we saw them riding bikes. We saw them thumbing for a hitchhikes. We saw them in Walmart. We saw them in restaurants and everywhere. Then we drove a little further and then it was Mexicans everywhere. Then we drove a little further then it was Blacks everywhere. So, we turned around and drove back through the various hoods and as we sort of got back past the Jewish community we found the next community was Catholic. So the Catholics were butted right up to the Jewish community. It was like little islands of peoples. In Texas everyone sort of mixes more so it was odd to me to see how everyone kept to their own little islands so much. A guy I spoke to later said that yes, there's China Town and Little Italy and such so each sort of sticks to themselves and are not homogeneous like they would be more in Texas (not that Texas is that homogeneous).

So anyway, we got brave and went to a Jewish restaurant. They asked us if it was for "here" or "to go". I sort of thought that odd/strange because it was a sit down type restaurant. We said "here" so they sat us by the door and never came back. So eventually we left. I wondered if my 1/2 German look may have stood out or unnerved them? Anyway, we went to another restaurant and this time it was a pizza hole-in-the-wall place. The Jewish don't eat or serve pork or beef (with cheese?) so they had cheese pizza and veggie pizza as well as various pastas. I had a slice of cheese and a slice of spinach. When I tried to pay, the cashier didn't seem to want to take the money from me. So, I laid it on the counter and then he took it. I guess he didn't want to touch a gentile? Anyway, the pizza was very good. We sort of felt like we were in a fish bowl as everyone was sort of looking at us now and then like we were from a different planet. However, we sort of looked at them too so I guess all's fair. This one five year old boy just stood there and staired right at us in front of our table. His mother leaned down and whispered something in his ear and then he turned around and walked off. It was really an odd experience.

I talked to a guy on the plane back and he said my interpretation of what happened was probably totally off as the Jewish really like visitors. So perhaps I'm just paranoid or am I?

As we were driving in New York, every road seemed to be a toll road and if you're not careful you'll miss the pay cash lane as we did once while going to a bridge. The toll booth had one of those wooden arms and wouldn't raise since we didn't have a toll tag so we had to wait for a police officer. He sort of gave us a hard time about it. He said it would be $4.50. So Tim handed him a $5 and he said if we wanted change we'd have to drive to some booth somewhere. So basically, he kept the change. I had my camera out and he sort of yelled at me, "You're not taking pictures of my bridge are you?" I guess it's something like terrorists would do or something. I said, "Oh no!" So then he yelled, "You better put that away!" I just said, "Yes sir!" and put it under my seat! So I guess I can say that I got yelled at by a police officer in New York, now!

We tried and tried to find a little souvineer Statue of Liberty. We first went into this dollar type store. There was this Chinese guy behind the counter. We asked him if he had any or knew where we could find one. He couldn't speak english so we just left. We went into this one Mexican looking Grocery store and asked this spanish lady for a statue of liberty. She just sort of looked like a deer in the headlights and walked off into the office. I'm guessing she didn't speak english. So anyway this guy comes out and she sort of fingered him over to us. So we ask him and I think he spoke less english. He said, "Uhhh Yeah...." and that's about it. So we left. It's sort of weird that so many people in NY don't speak english! All the stores there, even the Walmart had no New York Souvineers at all! We finally just bought stuff at the airport since it seemed we couldn't get any cool stuff anywhere else.

All in all, it was quite an experience for a TEX-UN like me.

I have a few Zoysia sprouts but not as many as I was hoping.

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