I just came home from a weeklong trip up to Gatlinburg. I like it there. My family buys swords when we go there. I like swords. Swords are good.
I had had a feeling that I would find a really great sword this trip even though I haven't seen a sword that I just absolutely feel head over heels drooling for in a couple of years. Yes, I am a sad case. I will drool over a sword more easily than a boy. What can I say, I grew up around swords, and I adore them. My instinct was right. Before we actually checked into our cabin, we stopped by the Knife Works
museum/sword warehouse type place. I found the sword. Ooh... I love the sword... It's a tai chi with a wooden hilt and sheath and a Damascus blade. *^_^* I went and found my parental units and stood with them as we looked over the medieval swords then lead them over to the martial arts display area where the tai chi was and pointed out the sword to them. My parents liked it too. And they knew I was absolutely in love, they know me well. So we got help so we could see how much it cost. Oh, boy... expensive... Guess why? It was made to actually be useable, not just for show. Ooh, I wanted it even more. But I behave in front of the sales people, if they know you want it badly; they charge you an arm and a leg. We left and came back a couple of days later. We had all intentions of buying it, but it turned out the sword in the display was the last of it's kind, and they weren't getting in any more, ever. The sheath was a little messed up. I had to stand quietly and emotionlessly as my dad searched the sword for any flaws and pointed them out disapprovingly to the sales staff and suggested a markdown was in order. He went to find a manager saying the best we were likely to get was 10% off. As the guy left, dad gave the smile that let me know we would get it markdown or no. It was just a little trouble with the scabbard, and he liked the sword too. We got $50 off. I'm not sure what percentage that comes to, but it's more than 10. So happy little L-chan has a new sword.
I got a few other things including a blue kung fu uniform a heavy steel training ring, and an airbrush tee of Trunks from DBZ, I had them do a new design for me, looks awesome, I'll scan in a pic later.
Three days into our trip, we changed cabins. Some weird working in the scheduling when we made plans caused us to have to rents two cabins for the trip. The first one was way, way up a steep foothill. I would say mountain, but I've hiked in the Smokies before, it wasn't a mountain. The second one was 1000 walking feet from the main strip, which would've been really cool, except for one minor detail they decided not to tell us until after we paid for the cabin. There was a bear problem. My little brother has a huge bear phobia, and I like to keep a safe distance from wild animals, I respect their territory. This wasn't just a bear; it was a mama, with cubs. And yeah, they come right up on the deck. JOY.
My brother and his friend, Dan-chan, who came on the trip with us didn't know about the bears when we lead them to the cabin. We were in two cars and Mums, Dads, and I had gone and gotten the cabin while the boys laser-tagged. We wanted to avoid telling them for as long as possible, lest my brother go in fetal-position panic a-la Cloud from FF7. But once we got the bags inside, and I was moving bags into ppl's respective rooms, I saw Little brother and Dan out back wandering down the bear trails that lead to the river. I thought the bears wouldn't really come out until dark, but I didn't want to take chances. I asked them to help me move bags to rooms first, and thankfully Dan was being helpful, and BJ reluctantly followed. As we came upstairs to get bags, I loudly announced that the boys had been headed off on the trails out behind the cabin, we had been warned that there were trails leading down to the river that the bears used. Mom sat both boys down and explained as I finished transporting bags. They were pissed. So was I. BJ was scared. I do not blame him. A couple of minutes later an approximately 80 pound yearling came up on the patio to investigate the trash cans. We all watched through the floor to ceiling glass doors and windows that cover way-to much of the wall space to make me feel comfortable cursing as the bear looked back at us with no trace of fear or shyness towards humans. He walked all around the house, on my brother's and my cars, even balancing to walk around the railings on the deck, letting us know that there wasn't a place it couldn't reach around the cabin. I am surprised my little brother didn't go into a whimpering blob in the corner. I think he's stronger for the overall situation, but still, very not cool on the part of the rental company to not tell us. A few hours later two of my aunts and one of my uncles arrived in Gatlinburg, they were staying with us for 3 days, and Mom and dad went to fetch them. As they arrived back, we had to yell out the door to stay in their car. Mama bear was sniffing the trashcans now and she had 5 very little babies with her. These babies were smaller than my little dog. So we had to manage our schedule for the next four days being careful not to meet our 7 friendly bears up close and personal. Poor Uncle Ken was sitting out on the deck relaxing while the rest of us were in town on the second day when the yearling, which we ended up nicknaming Ralph, came within an arms length distance of him. Uncle Ken got inside with out incident, but he had shit scared out of him.
But anyways, now I'm back, and I have to catch up with online stuff, particularly my e-mail... which has 57 new at current. Ai yai yai..... So if you're expecting a reply soon, cut me a little slack, I'm tired. I've also tried to speed-read trough most everyone's journal entries. And I'm not going to do any better playing catch up than I already have. I'm really sorry to see Dusty and Nephychu leaving LJ. Bye guys. When I get the film developed, I should have some cute pics of Ralph, assuming the glare wasn't too bad through the glass.