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UNCLE JACK'S WEBLOG
Monday, February 16, 2009
Sunrise in Sonag (No kidding!) Sunday Feb. 15, 2009

     Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. made a quick trip to Nags Head this weekend to oversee the transfer of some of their belongings to their new home in Baltimore, into which they will move this week now that they will have some furniture to sit on. Man cannot live by 52" flat screen high definition televisions alone.


     It was blowing hard enough on Sunday to prevent a walk on the beach which was a major disappointment but it was a thrill to watch (from indoors) the ocean rampaging around and the birds struggling to make headway against the northeast wind. Baltimore is a nice place to live but it doesn't have an ocean to look at and Uncle Jack has to admit that is a major drawback.


     Sunrise on Sunday took place behind a veil of thick, black clouds that were scudding along the horizon from north to south.  He stepped out on the back porch for a few seconds and snapped a picture which is not destined to become one of his favorite sunrise photographs. It will more likely serve to remind him how happy he was to be somewhere else, like Sorrento or Malta or New Orleans during the depths of winter on the Outer Banks.


     His wireless connection on East James Street has been tenuous at best so he is going to send this while the sending is good, even though it doesn't amount to much.  Look for another entry in a week or so when the dust has settled somewhat. Thanks for your patience.


    



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It was just as cold and nasty as it looks at 7 a.m. on Sunday.

posted by Uncle Jack at 6:27 AM

Comments [11]



Saturday, February 7, 2009
So much to do.....Saturday February 7, 2009

     .......and so little time. 


      Uncle Jack hopes his faithful readers will bear with him during this time of transition from 35-year resident of the Outer Banks to brand-new citizen of fabled Bawlmer, MD.  Every day seems to be fraught with demands on his time, few of which inspire him to take laptop in lap and wax eloquent.  (Countless hours of waiting for dilatory service people to provide service is not exactly the stuff of legend).


     The day will come when he and Mrs. U.J. will have settled into their new digs and will have time to begin to explore the cultural riches of their new environment but for the nonce they are forced to put such blog-producing activities on hold. Therefore he begs the indulgence of his faithful readers for the next couple of  weeks as his already less-frequent musings become even less frequent.


    Fortunately for everybody who would really rather read about the Outer Banks than  Baltimore anyway, a wonderful new blog made its first appearance on obxconnection yesterday.  Uncle Jack's good friend, Eve Turek,  the new owner (with  husband Pete) of his Yellowhouse Gallery,  is a wonderful writer and a superb nature photographer as her first blog entry demonstrates.  Find it by clicking on this link.......


http://www.obxconnection.com/blogs/blog_home.aspx


 and enjoy.  Uncle Jack will, that's for sure. 


posted by Uncle Jack at 6:25 AM

Comments [3]



Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Waiting for Samsung, Wednesday February 4, 2009

     Once again Uncle Jack is spending a morning doing what he does best these days---waiting for somebody to deliver something.  Last Wednesday it was his new 52" Samsung flat screen high definition TV and today---you guessed it---it's his new 52" Samsung flat screen high definition TV.  It's not snowing, the streets are clear of ice and the delivery is scheduled for the morning so Uncle Jack is preternaturally calm as he awaits the Best Buy Geeks and their precious cargo.  Pictures at 11? Who knows, it could happen.


     He and Mrs. U.J. visited Federal Hill for the first time yesterday.  This is a very old neighborhood overlooking the Inner Harbor and adjacent to downtown which mostly escaped the ravages of urban renewal and is now undergoing gentrification.  Hundreds of old rowhouses have been purchased for virtually nothing by urban pioneers and rehabbed into liveable dwellings in what is rapidly becoming a chic address.


     Naturally Federal Hill has not escaped the attention of megabucks developers who are trying hard to turn it into something that nobody who lives there  wants it to become but it looks like some of their most egregious plans  have been put on hold for a while. A recession is not all bad.


      Uncle Jack and Mrs. U.J. were on an errand and didn't get to see all of Federal Hill but most of what they saw was charming.  They made a quick stop at the fabled Cross Street Market which is a smaller but higher quality version of the sprawling Lexington indoor market downtown.  Mrs. U.J. picked up a nice rockfish fillet from an immaculate Vietnamese fish store and a couple of home-made bratwurst from an equally appealing deli.  They will eat well this week if not entirely healthily.  (Anybody know a source for organic bratwurst?)


     And now, the happy ending.  The Geeks (two affable and efficient young men) finally arrived at 1:30,  paused to bite the heads off a couple of chickens for lunch, and then proceeded to unpack and assemble Uncle Jack's new "Home Theater".  (That's what they called it and he can see why).  Stay tuned for further adventures of Uncle Jack and his 52" Samsung flat panel high definition TV as he explores the mysteries of the many-buttoned Comcast remote control. It could be humorous.


    



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The ancient, indoor Cross Street Market which is a full block long. Mostly food vendors of one kind and another. A jewel among Bawlmer's many public markets.

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Guess what this is. There's plenty of room for a Rick Tupper painting directly above it.

posted by Uncle Jack at 6:08 PM

Comments [9]



Monday, February 2, 2009
Holmes sweet Holmes, Monday February 2, 2009

      It was right up there with the Immaculate Reception if you ask Uncle Jack and he still can't believe that Santonio Holmes caught that pass.  He only wishes he could have seen it on his new 52" Samsung flat screen HDTV.


     The game was thrilling enough to overcome the mind-crushing effect of the 69 commercials inserted into every nook and cranny of it.  Uncle Jack is more convinced than ever that the greatest invention of all time was not the wheel---it was the mute switch.


     As it happened he and Mrs. U.J. missed what was arguably the most important play of the game---Harrison's interception and 100 yard touchdown run. An alarm had gone off in their apartment accompanied by an announcement of an "emergency in the building" which they were ordered to leave immediately, using the stairs instead of the elevator.


    Fire engines were massing in front of the building so they decided to follow instructions but by the time they had descended nine floors to the lobby it was all over.  Somebody somewhere had smelled smoke but the firemen could find no fire so it turned out to be nothing more than an inconvenient fire drill. By the time they got back to their apartment it was halftime and even the reruns of Harrison's miraculous Miraculous Interception were over.


     As Uncle Jack said before, he is being tested for something and he can hardly wait to find out what it is.


    


posted by Uncle Jack at 6:48 AM

Comments [6]




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Except for short hiatus in Baltimore Uncle Jack has lived in Nags Head for over 45 years. He was a columnist for the Outer Banks Current and its successor, the Outer Banks Sentinel, for 20 years. A collection of his columns is available from Amazon Kindle under the title Uncle Jack's Outer Banks. He and Mrs. Uncle Jack, aka Sue, live in South Nags Head whence he observes and sometimes comments on the passing parade.
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