Respect to Travel Bloggers and Sisters

One of my favorite things to do these days is to read articles about how to travel on the cheap, how to get around an unknown city, etc. One of my favorites is Nomadic Matt. The wanderlust definitely has me in its grips. And more and more it amazes me that these travel bloggers actually keep up with their actual blogging. Believe it or not, my employed counterparts, it takes time.

Being unemployed gives me the freedom to think about what I am/will write. I’m focusing on funny or interesting things going on around me instead of the character count of a headline for an SEO project. I’m in tune with my desires both impractical and realistic, not in a state of constant panic that only office politics can bring on. I realize this period of my life will be fleeting, doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy waking up not hating it. I mean, I haven’t even pushed a snooze button since January 9. Who wants to postpone this kind of freedom?

Maybe that’s the secret of real-life travel bloggers. They make the time to write, find Internet connections and download pictures all because they’re living the ultimate paid unemployment. As a newbie, I don’t understand the whole thing and I’d never claim to be a travel blogger, but for those getting paid to see the world, no strings attached, respect.

I am in fact, enjoying my visit
I am in fact, enjoying my visit

Speaking of travel, I’ve motored my way from Richmond to Southern Maryland. A 2-hour drive north landed me in my older sister’s driveway.

About Ms. Ryan

My Sister, Ryan
My Sister, Ryan

An obsessed alumnus of Hokie nation (Virginia Tech University for those that think hokie is something that breaks a lot), Master’s Degree in Aerospace Engineering, employed by the United States Navy as a civilian systems engineer…she’s wicked smart. More stats:

  • 34-years-old
  • Owns a 3-bedroom house, 2 cars, 2 cats (one has diabetes)
  • Looks most like our mom
  • Shit = together
Celebrating 59, we donned hats at a Wine and Jazz Fest
Mom, celebrating 59, donned hats at a Wine and Jazz Fest

Even after this impressive list, she’s also single. I’m not sure there’s many unmarried, non-PTSD man-folk around the Solomon’s Island area. Military men, although hot (hello Fleet Week!) tend to be risky endeavors. During a visit years ago, we ended up at a karaoke night and she met this guy, let’s call him Jim. Jim and her had some good times, but like all good things, they must come to a bitter, torrid end and alas, I keep my hooking up skills to myself now.

EXCEPT, honorable mention, in Las Vegas in May 2013, celebrating my mom’s 60th birthday, the three of us ladies, plus Mara and Amanda met these two, nice looking ex-footballers in the Cosmopolitan Hotel. Since our flights were a day before Ryan’s, we told her to exchange numbers with one of them (the cuter one, I’ll admit). Fast-forward to story time and apparently he wines and dines her, gives her some chips to gamble with and she leaves her fair suitor high and dry in the city of sin. For Ryan, what happens in Vegas will follow you to your Irish-Catholic grave.

Amanda, Mara, Ryan and I do Vegas
Amanda, Mara, Ryan and I do Vegas

The truth is we are as different as different can be. I am excitable and flighty, Ryan is grounded and reasonable. I rather exercise and she chooses to eat clean. She loves numbers and I love words. Until adulthood, our differences tore us apart. We didn’t agree on anything, and when we were children she didn’t let me play with her or her friends. Having more than 5 years between us is a big gap when you’re young.

Luckily, times have changed and we are closer than ever. We’ve even taken a 2-week vacation to Ireland in 2012, with minimal fighting! We rented a car in Dublin and drove our little “lipstick car” around the island. Literally. Belfast, Galway, Killarney, Kilkenny, Cork, Wicklow… I’m missing some. But I’m told by some Irish friends I’ve seen more of Ireland than they have.

Cliffs of Moher
Cliffs of Moher

And I guess now I’m trying to see parts of my own country. Ryan supports it although she may not always understand my choices. She doesn’t have to, I’m just glad she’s got my back, and when I’m passing through, a spare room.

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