21 July 2018

World Cup Final and SlamFest

Last Sunday morning (15 July), I headed to the Amsterdam Tavern (http://amsterdamtavern.com/) in south St. Louis for a watch party for the FIFA World Cup (https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/) Final in Moscow between France and Croatia. I was joined by many soccer fans in the beer garden at the tavern's rear. Morganford was closed in front of the tavern to allow a temporary enclosure and a large screen TV to be set up for fans.

I had a couple of beers while enjoying the rather thrilling match, which France won by 4 goals to 2. There were quite a few Croatia supporters in the house, and some for France. Everyone was in good spirits.

While at the Amsterdam Tavern, I signed up for SoccerHive (https://soccerhive.com/), a new social network for soccer fans. Check it out and friend me there; I'm rsdstl07.

After the match, I went next door to the Dam (https://thedamstl.com/) for lunch. I had one of their cheeseburgers with a side of Belgian fries and a bottle of root beer. Most satisfying!

It was back to work the next morning. The week went quite well at the rental branch, if a bit slow at times. I did make a couple of trips to the service center near the Airport to get recall issues on a few of our vehicles fixed. Tuesday morning (17 July), I met Annie, our new management trainee at Ellisville. (Jacob recently transferred to our Airport location.)

After work on Tuesday, it was off to Calvary Presbyterian Church (http://calvarypresbyterianchurch.org/) for this month's meeting of IPMS/Gateway (http://www.ipms-gateway.com/) (https://www.facebook.com/IPMSGateway/) (https://plus.google.com/109625362829756697296). This meeting featured our annual SlamFest, in which we had two hours to build and finish a model kit. I was one of eight members who did so; in my case, a 1:72 scale Il-10. The completed models were judges by members who voted on the best entries. The top three vote getting models earned their builders hobby shop gift certificates. I didn't win, but it was fun.

Off to cheer on Saint Louis FC tonight against Orange County. Big match.


14 July 2018

High Heat, Soccer Drama, and Aviation Stories

This past week was a hot one--literally. Temperatures were in the low 90s F (at least 32 degrees C). Yesterday, it hit 96 degrees F (36 degrees C), with the heat index (temperature and humidity) hitting 102 degrees F (39 degrees C). Not easy trying to clean cars in that weather. Fortunately, I had plenty of thirst quencher and breaks inside the air conditioned office to help me carry on, and I did not feel any real bad effects. Also, it wasn't all that crazy busy at the branch, which made things easier as well.

I followed Tuesday's FIFA World Cup (https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/) semifinal on my smart phone while at work. France defeated Belgium 1-0 in that match. I was off work the next day (11 July), so I saw the thrilling semifinal between England and Croatia, won 2-1 in extra time by the Croats. Belgium and England play for third place today, which I am watching at home. I plan to be at a watch party tomorrow morning for the final between France and Croatia. While I would like to see Croatia win, I think France will win, as they seem to be the better overall side. We'll see. It's sure been fun so far.

Before Wednesday's match, I finished editing the July issue of The Arch Scaler News for IPMS/Gateway (http://www.ipms-gateway.com/) (https://www.facebook.com/IPMSGateway/) (https://plus.google.com/109625362829756697296). I printed and mailed out the few copies going to members without email, and later sent the rest of the members their newsletters via email.

After work on Thursday, I headed to Creve Coeur Airport (http://crevecoeurairport.com/) for the Missouri Aviation Historical Society (https://moavhist.org/) meeting. This event featured an Aviation Open Mic, in which attendees had the opportunity to tell their aviation-related stories. I mentioned one from an air show I attended in 1980 and seeing a Vulcan bomber up close. It was a nice evening hearing some very interesting stories.

I am off to an Enterprise (https://www.enterprise.com/en/home.html) area party in Kirkwood this afternoon, and the Saint Louis FC (https://www.saintlouisfc.com/) match tonight. I will be careful in this heat!


08 July 2018

High Heat and the 4th of July

From the end of June to yesterday (7 July), I spent much of my free time inside, watching the FIFA World Cup (https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/). I was pulling for Brazil (https://www.cbf.com.br/), and was disappointed when they lost in the quarterfinals. It should be fun with the semifinalists set now: France vs. Belgium on Tuesday, England vs. Croatia on Wednesday.

I braved the heat on a week ago yesterday (30 June) to cheer on Saint Louis FC (https://www.saintlouisfc.com/) against Rio Grande Valley FC Toros. After enjoying a nice dinner at the St. Louligans (http://stlouligans.com/) tailgate, I marched into Toyota Stadium for the match. It ended as a scoreless draw.

Work has gone well, with the Independence Day holiday (4 July) falling on a Wednesday this year. It was rather busy early in the week with rentals before the holiday.

I was glad we were closed for the holiday, as it was very hot. Temperatures hit 100 degrees F (38 degrees C), with the heat index reaching 110 degrees F (43 degrees C). I stayed at home rather than go to any Fourth of July celebrations.

Work the next day (5 July) was--mercifully--fairly slow, as the high heat continued. We got through the day just fine. Same for Friday, which was a bit cooler.

This weekend, I mostly spent it at home, watching yesterday's World Cup quarterfinals on TV, and starting work on this month's IPMS/Gateway (http://www.ipms-gateway.com/) (https://www.facebook.com/IPMSGateway/) (https://plus.google.com/109625362829756697296) newsletter, which I want to get out this week.


30 June 2018

Melissa Etheridge (& Brian Delaney) Play The Sheldon

After work on Thursday night (28 June), I headed to the Sheldon Concert Hall & Art Galleries (http://www.thesheldon.org/) in midtown St. Louis' Grand Center Arts District (http://www.grandcenter.org/). I was there to see Melissa Etheridge (https://melissaetheridge.com/) perform in concert, with my brother Brian (http://www.bddrums.com/) playing on drums.

After parking in the garage across the street and dashing through the rain, I arrived inside the Sheldon, where Brian told my my ticket was waiting at the Will Call desk. They had my ticket and backstage pass, then the Will Call person told me to head to the merchandise table, located in the adjacent art gallery. I did and both Brian and my Mom were there. We chatted for a bit before Mom and I walked over to the lobby, where we waited until the auditorium opened up 30 minutes before showtime.

Inside the auditorium, we found our seats, located in the center section in the sixth row from the stage. Mom and I waited in our seats until the show began just after 8 pm. The hall was virtually packed and they cheered as Etheridge, Brian, and the two other musicians on stage started the set. It was a terrific program, with Etheridge playing her hits which go back over 30 years, and a few other songs. When she introduced Brian as being from St. Louis, the crowd (including Mom and I) cheered loudly.

After the main set, the band came back onstage for a brief encore. This included Etheridge joining Brian on drums for a tune. The main set and encore lasted just over two and one half hours. Mom and I, joined by our friends Jim and Pat Cook, went backstage, where we chatted with Brian for awhile. We then left the building, and Brian got on the tour bus for their next stop: Cincinnati.

Overall, a great night. So proud of my brother.


27 June 2018

Volunteer Sunday, Movie Tonight, and Brian in Town

I had a busy day of volunteering last Sunday (24 June). First, I was in downtown St. Louis with about 100 other Enterprise (https://www.enterprise.com/en/home.html) employees in marching in the St. Louis PrideFest Parade (https://pridestl.org/). After waiting in the staging area for about two hours, we stepped off onto Market Street for the 12-block long parade. We had a truck from Enterprise Truck Rental (https://www.enterprisetrucks.com/truckrental/en_US.html#_ga=2.97405727.1020205400.1530151678-1638779697.1529286224) and three convertibles from Enterprise Car Sales (https://www.enterprisecarsales.com/) with us in the parade. There was a great crowd there, and we got a great response from the crowd. (Perhaps, this response to us was helped by the candy we were throwing out to the crowd.) I was very pleased and happy to march again (my third Pride Fest Parade) to show my support--and Enterprise's--for Lesbian Bisexual Gay Transgendered Queer (LBGTQ) people, including those I know and have come across in life. I am proud to be a straight ally for LBGTQ rights.

Right after the parade ended, I got into my car--parked at St. Louis Union Station (http://www.stlouisunionstation.com/)--and drove to the Kirkwood Community Center (http://www.kirkwoodmo.org/content/City-Departments/1856/community-center.aspx). There, I was a volunteer at Festa Junina, a Brazilian folk festival presented by Viva Brasil STL (https://www.vivabrasilstl.org/). After checking in, I served as a floating volunteer, mostly clearing dining tables. Festa Junina was very nice; this festival included Brazilian food, children's games, a silent auction, and Brazilian music played by a disk jockey (DJ). They also had Quadrillha (a Brazilian form of square dancing), for children and then for adults, plus a demonstration of Capoeira (Brazilian martial arts) by a local group, Capoeira Luanda St. Louis (http://www.capoeirastl.org/). I then helped to clean up and pack up after the festival. Overall, a long but satisfying afternoon.

Back at work Monday morning, it was busy, but we got it done. During my lunch break, I contacted customer service at CREDO Mobile (https://www.credomobile.com/) regarding my replacement mobile phone. After about 40 minutes on the phone, they were able to fix the problem with my phone not getting service. The SIM card for this phone was not set to my phone number. CREDO Mobile fixed the problem at their end and my phone is working good now.

Off work today, I went downtown to help Mom find the hotel where my brother Brian (http://www.bddrums.com/) stayed the night. He arrived the night before with Melissa Etheridge (https://melissaetheridge.com/), for whom Brian plays drums. Brian spent the day at home with Mom and I. That included watching some FIFA World Cup (https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/) matches on TV. (Vamos Brasil!) Etheridge performs tomorrow night at the Sheldon Concert Hall (http://www.thesheldon.org/). Looking forward to that. More on the concert in my next post.

Tonight, I went to the Saint Louis Science Center (https://www.slsc.org/) to join with other Missouri Aviation Historical Society (https://moavhist.org/) members in watching a screening of "Aircraft Carrier: Guardian of the Seas" (https://www.slsc.org/omnimax/aircraft-carrier/) on the center's OMNIMAX theater. It was a terrific documentary of modern aircraft carrier operations, filmed during a RIMPAC (Rim of the Pacific) exercise.