Wednesday, October 29, 2008

That Pumpkin Time of Year


Dhania & Pumpkin
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

Andrea and Dhania worked long and hard on their Halloween pumpkin... well, in all honesty, Andrea worked hard while Dhania watched tv. Regardless, a good time was had by most...

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Finishing Touches at the New Packers Plus Facility in Charleston, WV


Finishing Touches at the New Packers Plus Facility in Charleston, WV
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

I started work this week at the new Packers Plus facility in Charleston, WV. Since the builders are putting the finishing touches on the building, we've spent the last few days getting our tools ready and assembling office furniture.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Late Night Prowlers


Raccoons
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

After three weeks in Arkansas, and three days at Camp Dawson for training, I finally got a chance to kick back, relax, and spend a quiet evening at home... or so I thought.

During a handful of times during the evening, our dogs Luka and Molly kept barking at the front door. Occasionally a squirrel or stray cat will catch their attention and fits of barking will naturally follow. But this time they just wouldn't give up.

Upon further inspection, I came across these two scoundrels. They had made their way onto the porch in search of some fresh bird seed and ears of dried corn I had stuck out a few hours earlier.

Most of the raccoons that make their way across the porch usually scatter fast once the dogs hit the scene, but these young ones just huddled in one corner, afraid to make a move until the coast was clear.

I guess I'm going to have to come up with a squirrel/raccoon proof way of feeding the birds... or just be content at feeding every living creature in the neighborhood.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Deer Racks on Front Porch


Deer Racks on Front Porch
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

I just flew in from Arkansas this evening, finishing up my three weeks of training with Packers Plus. To say the least, it's good to be home.

My stay in Arkansas was busy, with not much to do other than train for my new job, but I did have time to squeeze off a few pics.

This image is the front porch of the infamous Bob Tom. I'll post a few more pics from my trip in the days to come, but right now it's off to bed because I've got Guard drill this weekend.

Atlanta Airport


Atlanta Airport
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

Almost home... I've got a three hour layover in Atlanta, so I should be home by 4:30 this evening.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

J.P. McGarrell


J.P. McGarrell
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

This is my friend J.P. McGarrell. He's been training us here at the Packers Plus facility in Conway, Arkansas helping us get ready to open the Charleston, West Virginia shop.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Payton Creek Catfish House


Payton Creek Catfish House
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

Wednesday night dinner in Conway, Arkansas.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Packers, Packers and More Packers


Packers
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

Palates of packers waiting to be rebuilt and assembled into systems.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Packers Plus Facility - Conway, Arkansas


Packers Plus Facility - Conway, Arkansas
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

This is where I'll be working and training for the next three weeks.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Waxing Crescent Moon


Waxing Crescent Moon
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

What a cool moon tonight, with its orange glow. I caught it just a few minutes before it disappeared behind the treeline.

Now it's off to bed. I'm starting my new job tomorrow - so it's off to Conway, Arkansas for three weeks of training.

Welfare and Silver Linings


Phillips St. Fire
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

I've had a cold for the past few days, and have generally felt like warm crap. I went to bed early last night, in hopes of slipping into a light coma and getting some peace and quiet, but was awoken at around 2AM or so by my wife when she arrived home from work. Upon my wakening, she told me that the rental house adjacent to us was ablaze, and that I might what to get out of bed and watch the spectacle.

Now, I'm not normally one for goose-necking, but I just had to watch the fiasco unfold. This house has a long history you see, one that has led to nothing for us (and most of the neighbors) other than pain and frustration.

The house has been a rental unit for some time now, and is owned by a pretty fair character. I've only met him a couple of times, but he's been very personable and friendly enough to allow us to park on his property and use it for access to ours. Unfortunately, he lives out of the Charleston area, and doesn't get to see the day to day welfare madness that we have to put up with.

We've lived here on Byng for about five years now, and have seen at least a half dozen different idiots (everything from goofy teenage skateboarder punks to full blown Chicago drug dealers) roll in and out of the blue rental hut like a strong breeze. They've all left nothing but a wake of unpaid bills and pissed off neighbors in their wake - the typical migratory hillbilly family.

I could tell from day one that this last family that moved into the house was going to be a real pack of winners. During my first conversation with them, they proceeded to tell me of their last living situation in St. Albans and how horrible everybody had treated them, looking for my sympathy and understanding. Having seen this act of paranoia and desperation before, I assured them that I really didn't care, but expected that if they were good to me, they'd see kindness in return.

It didn't take more than a couple of weeks for all the hillbilly fun to begin. Lot's of fighting and slammed doors at the wee hours of the morning, spinning tires and sundry of other redneck annoyances. At least there didn't seem any drug trafficking this time around, which was about the only silver lining in regards to this most recent pack of mouth breathers.

Within the first month all communication ties were severed, and we generally tried to not even look in a northerly direction at the blue rental hut that has caused us such grief. I've dealt with idiots like this before, and knew the best course of action is no action at all - just leave them the hell alone to wallow in misery and debt. To intervene or take action would only lead to slashed tires or missing property.

But, one thing that we have grown accustomed to is the waxing and waning phases of renters. We knew that they too would one day move under a cloud of disgust, and yesterday was that day.

Sadly though, a fire mysteriously broke out in the house just after they left. I'm by no means casting blame - only pointing out convenient timing - and the fact that it looked like somebody set a sofa in the basement on fire.

Anyhow, I wish the property owner the best. I hope that he fixes it up as he's often mentioned, and maybe, just maybe.... actually gets some half way decent renter this time around - one that pays on time and leaves us the hell alone.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Frosty Brew for a Hard Days Work


Frosty brew for a hard days work
Originally uploaded by Jason Means

My brother Steve and I joined Timmy, Autumn and Dean for a bite to eat and a few frosty beverages after a hard days work.