J.C.'S Blog: June 2012Posted:
I have been really bad about keeping my blog updated. I don't even know where to begin as so much has happened over the past few week. From vacation, to heat, to awards and family life is good. I guess I could start by talking about vacation.
Ashley and I decided about a month ago that we wanted to take a trip. I started looking at places along the coast, Myrtle Beach, Jacksonville, Savannah, Charleston but nothing was pricing out very good. We love all those places that are in the southeast. I decided to head to cheapcarribean.com and see how much it would be to fly somewhere out of the country. At first I wasn't finding anything that was that great. I checked Dominican Republic, Cancun, Jamaica, and Cabo. Finally I looked at Puerto Vallarta and, wow what a deal. I told Ashley about it and she said, "lets do it!" I was looking at all the resorts and we settled on RIU Palace Pacifico.
Our vacation started out with me riding the train from Mattoon to Champaign to meet Ashley after work. This was my first time on the train and it was a great experience. I would take the train again anytime. We meet at a local pub and had dinner and then headed for Chicago. Our flight was fairly early on Saturday morning so we did a park sleep and fly deal. You pay for the hotel room and the parking is free along with shuttle service to O'hare. The flights went smooth and even our connection in Phoenix was very easy. We arrived in Puerto Vallarta in the late afternoon and customs was very easy. The guy looked at our passports and then stamped them and said welcome to Mexico. It took all of about 5 minutes. When you head out of customs and find your taxi or tour company there are all the time share people. We have learned just to keep your head down and head for the exit and find the tour company. Once we found then they put us in a taxi and away we went to the hotel. We arrived to this beautiful property and the hotel lobby was all marble.
That night we got checked in and the beauty of all these places they are all-inclusive. Your food and drinks are already paid for and you can eat and drink as much as you want. We headed up to our room which overlooked the Sierra Madres and you could see the ocean. I could get used to waking up to that view everyday. We spend the next couple of days laying at the beach and in the pool. We decided one evening to walk down the beach to this little town called Bucerias Mexico. It took us about 45 minutes and we checked out some of the shops and then found a neat little bar called the drunken duck. This place was an outdoor bar with palm trees and a band playing. The clients were mostly Americans, as this city is a destination for a lot of retirees who want to come to live by the ocean for a fraction of the cost.
One of the highlights of the trip was a trip out to an area called Las Caletas. Its across the bay from PV and the area is lit by torches only. When you get off the boat you are greeted by people dressed in native attire just as you would have found them before colonization. We headed to our table which was located on the beach and had dinner. After dinner we went to a theater area where the people in native dress put on a show honoring their ancestors. If you are ever in this area you should check it out. Its call Rhythms of the Night. One warning the bay is rough so if you get sea sick easily you might want to think twice. Also, sit on the upper deck of the boat you wont get wet on the way out to the show.
We got back from Mexico and on Wednesday last week I headed up to the IBA Awards. I was one of the finalists for Best Weathercaster in the Medium Market TV. This includes all the markets in Illinois except Chicago. I was really nervous the whole day and when it came time for the award they put all of our names on the screen and the guys said, "and the winner of the silver dome is"....I heard my name and it didn't sink in and then I heard my voice and saw the video I submitted. I feel very humbled by this award and very blessed. I have always wanted to be a weather person since I was a little kid. I have to think my wife Ashley for being so supportive and if it wasn't for her I wouldn't have won. I also thought back to the times when I was 5 and put the weather maps on my Great Grandparents wall and gave them the weather. I know that they are looking down from heaven smiling. Thanks to all of you for the kind words whether that be in person or on facebook. If you ever have question please shoot me a message on facebook, twitter, email, or just stop and say hey if you see me out and about.
On another note....its going to be a hot rest of the week and weekend. Temperatures over the next few days will top out around 100 to 105 in most areas. This weekend will bring temps in the upper 90's with a very slight chance for a thunderstorm. Any rain we can get now would be a welcome relief. Thanks again for all the wonderful messages and comments! Stay cool!!!!
2012 Warmest Spring on record....
This spring has been unsesable warm across the midwest and here in central Illinois. Here are some records from across the area...
Danville 60.3 old record 57.8 (1977 & 1991)
Bloomington 58.5 old 58.3 (1977)
Champaign 59.2 old 57.8 (1977)
Springfield 61.2 old 59.4 (1977)
Lincoln 59.2 old 58.5 (1977)
Here is the link to the whole story.... http://www.crh.noaa.gov/news/display_cmsstory.php?wfo=ilx&storyid=83745&source=0
Venus transit across the sun....
You don't want to miss this event because we wont see this happen in our lifetime again. At 1:09 CDT Venus will begin its 7 hours transit across the sun and this won't happen again until December 2117. Here is a link to the article that talks about this historic day.
Here is a really cool article about the full moon coming.