3 Day Weekend Randomness

Jason and I took a vacation day on Friday.  It was a much needed three day weekend for me as he had MLK Day and Presidents’ Day off so far this year, but I hadn’t taken any time off work.  Rather than taking the extra time to relax, I used the additional day to accomplish tasks.  Here is my categorical randomness rundown from the long weekend:

House – Jason and I met with a flood insurance agent on Friday to finalize obtaining a policy.  It was something we discussed in the fall after 2018 was such a rain dominated year.  While our house isn’t in a designated flood plane and we have no bodies of water close to us, it still gives us peace of mind knowing that in the event of flooding we’re covered.  I am still waiting on news from the plumber regarding the water service line work.  The neighbor across the street said the neighbor on the corner received permission to install a water meter kit (something we plan to do) and run a new line from it to the water main, but not replace their galvanized piping into the house.  It would require them to rip up either their driveway or garage floor to do it.  I left a message for the plumber asking if this was an option for us as well, as I would much prefer if we didn’t need to shell out a ton of money and destroy our yard to put in a new line into the house.  Fingers crossed this works out for the best and doesn’t cost a fortune as Jason and I were hoping to have the spare room remodeled this year.

Volunteering – Jason, myself and two other ladies from church have formed a Welcome Team group to partner with Church World Service, an organization based in Lancaster that helps refugees once they arrive in the United States.  Our group’s main focus would be socialization and being friends with the refugees through spending time together doing various activities such as playing games, going for walks, etc.  We attended our second orientation on Friday and found out that there is a Congolese family due to arrive early in April.  The family consists of a father, mother, two brothers to the mother and five children ages ranging from 1 – 13.  I have learned so much already about the struggles that refugees go through from living in camps for years on end to the hoops they must jump through to come to the United States.  I am very nervous about meeting people who speak limited English as I am a talker, and I haven’t had much interaction with people of other cultures and fear saying or doing something offensive.  I know this is a great opportunity to grow as a person though, and help others in the process so I am going to put my best foot forward in taking on the challenge.

Track – Originally our first scrimmage was to be Thursday afternoon, but due to heavy rains all day it was rescheduled for Friday.  The winds were quite wicked at times and my hips ached from being cold, but being cold was much better than being cold and wet.  Several of my kids had really solid performances and while scores weren’t kept, it helped me to know who should be in which events for our first real meet on Tuesday.

Running – Jason and I were going to meet up with my dad Sat. morning to run the Turkey Hill Country Classic 10k course in preparation for the race in May.  Unfortunately dad was sick Friday night with a stomach virus, so Jason and I took to the roads without him.  The winds from Friday carried into Saturday and we began running into a head wind.  This lasted almost until the third mile when we turned and finally had the wind to our backs.  We finished into a head wind, and I think Jason gained a new understanding of how challenging running can be.

Food & Drink – Friday morning Jason and I went to breakfast after dropping the cat off for dental surgery.  I love going out for breakfast, and there’s something extra special about going on a day off of work.  Ironically I ran into a coworker’s husband who was out to eat with his coworkers.  On Saturday we decided to use one of our gift cards from Christmas to enjoy lunch at Fiesta Mexico, a very filling treat after our tough and windy 6 mile run.  Eating high quality Mexican food made me wonder how people can enjoy food from Taco Bell.  We tried one of the desserts, sopapillas, which was the closest thing I have tasted to an elephant ear in terms of flavor since Lordys Elephant Ears stopped attending the York Fair.  Saturday evening we indulged in craft beverages at The Taproom at the Barn & Barrel prior to attending a comedy show.  I had a blood orange cider that wasn’t quite as orange flavored as the one I sampled during our tiny house trip in the fall, but was still very light and refreshing.

Comedy Show – Earlier this year I was browsing events held at Mt. Hope Estate & Winery, home of the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, and discovered they had renovated one of their buildings and were using it to host a once a month comedy show.  Tickets were only $15 a person in advance, so I ordered two for Saturday’s show as the February show had already sold out.  I had never attended a comedy show other than ones on the two cruises I’ve taken.  The 8pm start time was a tad late for my liking (Jason and I are usually in bed reading at 9 and asleep by 10), but I was looking forward to having a “date night”.  The show area was very intimate with rustic decor.  This included wooden chairs which had I known about in advance, I likely would’ve worn jeans instead of leggings as my butt was rather sore by the end of the show.  That being said Jason and I had a very good time.  There were three comedians, and the host also performed a short bit.  We found the two male comedians to be very entertaining.  Unfortunately we felt the female comedian relied too heavily on sexually themed topics.  Neither of us are prudes by any means and don’t take offense to most comedy.  We just find it in poor taste to rely on such “easy” material as sex and feel that too many female comedians do this.  I wish more females would take a clue from Ellen DeGeneres.  Overall it was a good show though and at a little over two hours, very worth the price.

Is flooding a concern for you?  Do you volunteer with any organizations?  Do you have any suggestions for me with meeting people of a vastly different culture than my own or tips for communicating with limited English speakers?  Have you ever attended a comedy show?

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About TracyNicole

Runner. Writer. Reader. Environmental advocate. Fascinated by the ocean, waterfalls and Christmas lights. Inspired by Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Elon Musk.
This entry was posted in Food, Personal Life, Random Thoughts, Running and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to 3 Day Weekend Randomness

  1. runeatralph says:

    Of course I’m always most interested in the running parts of your posts, but the volunteering part of this one is pretty awesome. I hope it goes well and I hope that you keep us posted.

    As far as Taco Bell goes…I think of it as a type of food all its own and don’t compare it to authentic Mexican food. I love Taco Bell every once in a while. There’s nothing else quite like it haha.

    • TracyNicole says:

      Glad to spark your interest in something beyond my running! Haha I’m hoping it goes well too and I’ll be sure to update. We’re tentatively scheduled to meet the family Sat. Apr. 6th.

      Hmm so maybe Taco Bell and other “this isn’t real food but we crave it sometimes for some unknown unhealthy reason anyway” stuff should have its own food category. Not sure what we should call it? I don’t think I’ve eaten Taco Bell since college. When I lived in Scranton with Jason there was only one and it wasn’t close to our town and I just really don’t ever crave it. That being said, I would like to try their nacho fries sometime… the commercial does make them look appealing!

  2. Our house is on top of a hill so it would literally take an event from armageddon to flood our house. We sometimes get remnants from hurricanes (I live in central NC) in the form of strong winds and rain, but we feel safe from flooding. Fallen trees and downed power lines are a whole other story.

    I also live in an area and work for an institute where we get a lot of people from other countries, so it’s “normal” for me to meet and speak with people from around the world. I think if you just try to be yourself and not nervous or over-do it, things will be fine. It’s great that you’re a part of such a group for refugees. What I’ve found over time is most people have the same needs and wants- to feel safe and that their basic needs are met. It also doesn’t hurt to ask them what they want/need and how you can help them rather than giving them what you think they want. I also highly respect other people’s cultural differences.

    • TracyNicole says:

      It sounds like you are pretty safe (pending downed trees/lines) where you live! My parents live on a hill as well, but sometimes get water in their basement due to ground saturation and the water seeping through the walls. Fortunately it’s not a finished basement, but I’ve heard some horror stories of people who have finished basements and have had this happen and their stuff is ruined with no recourse as it’s not covered by home owner’s insurance. I asked the insurance lady if flood insurance would cover it, and she said only if the event is deemed a “flooding event” which would require that water cross 2 property lines. That means my parents’ basement flooding from ground saturation wouldn’t qualify as a flooding event. Sometimes I wish I had a basement, but other times I’m grateful that I don’t for reasons such as that.

      I think I’m most nervous about the limited English more than any cultural differences. Jason downloaded a Swahili app on his phone to learn some words and while I know their goal is to learn English, I think that may help us at the beginning. It certainly seems like an easier language to pronounce than when we tried to learn some German the other year!

  3. Laurie says:

    I am running the Turkey Hill race in May too! Just the 5K though (my favorite distance). I ran it last year and loved it! What a party-atmosphere after the race.

    The work you are doing through Church World Services is so important. I know you are going to be a great person to help out the Congolese family and to help them get acclimated to their new home. I have often thought about doing this type of volunteer work for the same organization, but have just never pulled the trigger yet. Maybe your example will inspire me to contact them.

    • TracyNicole says:

      How exciting! I remember my dad running there years ago and me attending but not racing. I don’t recall if he ran the 5k or 10k. I have ran both courses in training runs and ran the trail that’s part of the half marathon course, so I think any of the 3 races are nice. I love back country road racing!

      I will certainly be updating as I go through the volunteer experience. I haven’t received confirmation that the family is arriving this week/we’re meeting them on Saturday but that’s the game plan.

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