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Posts Tagged ‘adventures’

Kat’s Novel Adventures

This past week has been an incredible week for creative folks, including myself. As you know, dear reader, I have been collaborating with Kelsi on her channel, Slime and Slashers – Books, Movies, & Nostalgia, for the last two years. We talk about books, movies, and activities we participate in during the holidays and months with special themes. In 2022, we decided to do a year-long Year of King project where we read a Stephen King book or short story each month and watch its screen adaptation(s). Then, we follow up with a monthly livestream to chat about our experiences. Additionally, I have been following several book tubers’ channels. It is no secret that I LOVE books, and reading is my favorite pastime. Watching bibliphiles talking about books and the stories they are reading is my idea of a good time.

Since the end of last year, I have been toying with the idea of creating a YouTube channel where I could talk about the books I am reading and maybe some of my other interests and creative pursuits. Therefore, back in March, I chose my channel’s name and created some components of my channel (banner, about information, added a link to my blog). And, there it sat quietly, waiting for me to take the next step which was to create an actual video. I planned to launch my channel with an introducton video the weekend after Labor Day. Crickets! Then, I decided to include it on my Fall Fun List. So, on Friday morning, I LAUNCHED my YouTube channel with my first video. I am thrilled to officially be on the YouTube platform and part of the Book Tube community.

Dear reader, if you have two minutes to spare, please check out my channel’s introduction video. Many, many thanks to Kelsi for helping me make this dream a reality. Thus far, I have received lots of kind and encouraging words since I launched my channel. I look forward to this new adventure.

Contingency

Friday was also a HUGE day for my friends Brian and Maria. The three of us started improv together back in January of 2020. They are both talented improvisors and actors. With Slice of Dat Productions, they participated in the creation of a short film called Contingency which was submitted as an entry in the 48 Hour Film Project for Chicago 2022. Basically, their team worked together to make a movie in ONLY 48 hours. On Friday afternoon, Contingency debuted to the general public on YouTube. I think the cast and crew did a remarkable job. The film is gritty, nerve-racking, and thrilling.

“Let’s Do the Time Warp Again”

One of my favorite movies is The Rocky Horror Picture Show. It is not a particularly good movie, but it is a cult classic and has a fantastic soundtrack. The film is a great deal of fun to watch with an audience because the audience interacts with the film. Two years ago, Barry and I had a Rocky Horror Date Night where we had a blast reliving the film after not seeing it in theatres in over 30 years. Well, the Columbia Theatre showed it again this year, and we went to see it last Saturday with Shelly, Kerry, and Helen. Our evening started off with dinner at Cate Street Seafood Station. Then, we walked from the restaurant to Columbia Theatre where we were surrounded by creative audience members who were dressed amazingly as characters from the movie. I always say I am going to dress up as Magenta one year, but it has not happened, yet. Helen was a virgin going into the film because she had never seen it. There was a talented shadow cast dressed as the characters who performed terrifically on stage along with the movie. We each had prop bags (Barry shared with me) with various items to use throughout the film. My favorite part of the film is standing up and doing “The Time Warp” dance which is loads of fun. What an enjoyable evening with friends!

Lots going on in the world of entertainment, dear reader. Whether we are talking about books, music, films, or theatre, there is literally something out there in the world for everyone. I am thrilled I not only can enjoy being entertained, but I can also be a part of entertaining others. Life is truly full of adventures, some big and some small; some ordinary and some extraordinary; some experienced alone and some experienced with others. What creative adventures or endeavors are you a part of, dear reader? Happiness!

“One way to get the most out of life is to look upon it as an adventure.” ~ William Feather

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It has been a little over a week since I went on my adventure to Pho NOLA with my awesome friend Michelle. She is quite adventurous when it comes to trying new restaurants and new foods, which usually entails a good bit of ethnic food. In addition to American fare, we have eaten Korean, Cuban, and Mexican together. Because of distance, we do not get to hang out together as much as I would like, so when an opportunity presents itself, I take it. I can always count on Michelle to suggest somewhere terrific for us to enjoy a fantastic meal and a wonderful conversation.

Meatball Pho

Meatball Pho

When deciding where to eat lunch, I shared with her that one of my 20 for 2020 (#11) was to try 20 new restaurants this year. Since I had never eaten Vietnamese food, she suggested Pho NOLA in Metairie. I relied totally on Michelle to help me order because I had no clue. Of course, on my first visit, I had to try the pho (pronounced fu).

Brisket Pho

Brisket Pho

For those of you not familiar with pho, it is a popular Vietnamese soup traditionally found on the streets of Vietnam that is served in restaurants globally. It consists of broth, rice noodles, herbs, and meat. The key ingredient in the soup is the broth which simmers for many hours. A variety of meats can be used, including chicken and shrimp.

Trying PhoI ordered a combo meal: meatball pho with a grilled shrimp Banh Mi, a Vietnamese PoBoy (sandwich). Michelle opted for the same, but ordered brisket pho. The bread used to make the sandwich comes from a well-known Vietnamese bakery in New Orleans East called Dong Phuong Bakery. The bakery is famous for their king cakes. I have not been fortunate enough to try one of their king cakes; however, the bread that was used to make my Banh Mi was delicious.

SmoothieMy first experience eating Vietnamese at Pho NOLA was gratifying. My food was scrumptious. The meatball pho was heavenly and a perfect choice for the cold day (warm with a perfect blend of seasonings). A basket was brought to the table with basil, cilantro, bean sprouts, and scallions to garnish the pho. I chose only to add bean sprouts and cilantro. My sandwich tasted fresh and flavorful with the right combination of grilled shrimp dressed with aioli (light mayo mixture), pickled carrots and daikon (radish), cucumber, and cilantro. YUMMO! We topped off lunch by ordering BOBA Smoothies with tapioca pearls. I requested a mango and pineapple smoothie (delicious), and Michelle requested an avocado one (equally delicious). She was sweet enough to let me taste her avocado smoothie. Now, I dream about these delightful concoctions. What a wonderful treat with my AMAZING friend! Pho NOLA was a hit and a perfect place to start trying twenty new restaurants this year.

Pho NOLAHaving lunch and spending time with Michelle is always a happiness boost. Trying a new restaurant AND a new cuisine with her was a joyful adventure. I will definitely eat Vietnamese cuisine again, and I look forward to trying the different types of pho. Dear reader, I highly recommend having an adventure eating a cuisine that you have never tried before or visiting a new restaurant. You can even be adventurous at a restaurant that you frequent often by trying something new. I’d loved to know what new foods or new restaurants that you have tried recently. Please share your adventures with me because I have 19 more new restaurants to try before the end of 2020.

“Without experimentation, a willingness to ask questions and try new things, we shall surely become static, repetitive, and moribund.” ~ Anthony Bourdain

 

 

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Sylvia the Sloth 

On the Friday after Mardi Gras, my hubby, my mother-in-law (Mrs. Billie), Andrew and I packed up the car and drove down to Orange Beach in Alabama. Along the way, we stopped at Lambert’s Café which is “home of the throwed rolls” and had an amazing meal. Once we checked into the hotel, Andrew and I headed to the beach where we scoured the shore for seashells, relaxed on the sand, and admired its magnificent beauty.

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Barry took a picture from the hotel lobby of Andrew and me on the beach.

We all woke up early Saturday morning and ate a hearty breakfast at the hotel. Before packing up the car, Andrew and I walked along the beach and collected more seashells. Then, it was time to travel to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo in Gulf Shores where we participated in wildlife encounters. Mrs. Billie and Andrew played with the lemurs. This was the first time that Mrs. Billie had been to the zoo, and it was her first wildlife encounter. She had a blast!

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Mrs. Billie and Andrew playing with the lemurs

Afterwards, we all made our way over to the enclosure that housed two tamanduas, Xena and Titan. A tamandua is a lesser anteater. Andrew and I spent about 20 minutes interacting with them. They were both very busy, either investigating, digging, or walking around their enclosure and did not pay us too much attention.  Both of them were gentle and allowed us to pet them. Surprisingly, tamanduas have thick, coarse fur.

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Andrew petting Xena

As soon as our encounter with the tamanduas was over, the four of us walked around the rest of the zoo. Since it is not a large zoo, we were finished in about an hour. Mrs. Billie was getting tired, so she sat on a bench watching the kangaroo encounters while my hubby, Andrew, and I went to our sloth encounter.

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Sonic the Sloth

First, we met Sonic and Speedy. They are two-toed sloths who were neither speedy nor as fast as Sonic the Hedgehog. The zookeeper tried to entice them with small pieces of fruit to wake them up, and we were hopeful when Sonic looked up; however, it was brief, and he was soon back to sleep.  Sloths sleep 15 to 18 hours per day. The zookeeper told us that we could pet Sonic and Speedy; however, we would have to pet them on their backs. Apparently, sloths have poor eyesight and poor hearing. They are also closely related to anteaters. While anteaters do not have teeth, sloths do. Their fur is also thick and coarse.

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Andrew & Sylvia

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Kat & Sid

Since Sonic and Speedy decided to sleep instead of participating in our meet and greet, the zookeeper took us over to the other sloth enclosure to meet Sylvia and Sid who are also two-toed sloths. Sylvia was active and climbing on the ropes in her enclosure. My hubby, Andrew, and I pet Sylvia while she was exercising. We followed her into the room she shares with Sid. I was surprised by how fast she moved. She nestled in an elevated corner of her room to sleep. Sid slept through the entire encounter. This was a wondrous experience. Check out my Facebook page where I posted videos of Sylvia going back inside her room, as well as other pictures of our adventure in Alabama. For any of my readers interested in seeing the videos and are not on Facebook, email me, and I will send them to you via email.

Our Alabama adventure was an awesome way to end our Mardi Gras break, and it gave me the opportunity to cross off another item on my 18 for 2018 list. While I wish we could have spent more time at the beach, I am grateful for the time that we were there. It just means we need to go back for another visit. Maybe the next time we go, we can introduce my momma and daddy to the lemurs. Have you ever, dear reader, had a wildlife encounter at a zoo, a wildlife sanctuary, or in your own backyard? If so, please share in the comments. Enjoy your upcoming week. Happiness!

“The world is full of magic things, patiently waiting for our senses to grow sharper.” ~ W.B. Yeats 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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