Category Archives: Texas

Nina’s Travel Rule #43: I am Dirty, Get Over It

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So good it's _almost_ worth cleaning off to drink!  Not.

So good it’s _almost_ worth cleaning off to drink! Not.

I was informed yesterday, by a Turk of all people, that I should really wash the top of my Coke can before drinking.  Apparently some dude died last year ’cause he didn’t, and it was covered in rat piss.  Can we guess what I did, dear followers?  Yeah, that coke got drunk, but it sure didn’t get washed.  Because, you see, what the well-intentioned Turk failed to realizes is: I am Nina, I am dirty, get over it.  So, in explanation for the failure of his valiant effort (I love you, Wurk-Turk!), here y’all go: The Official Top 10 List of Nina’s Dirty Moments.

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Nina’s Travel Rule #41: Don’t Fly Bravofly. EVER EVER EVER Ever ever ever…

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What flying Bravofly has driven me to...

What flying Bravofly has driven me to… Yes, that’s me, huddled behind a coke machine in the Darwin Airport, charging the iPhone and drinking the bubbles…

So, I’ve been waiting to post this shit for like, a solid two months. Fuming the entire time. Fuming vociferously, in fact. To all who were willing to listen. However, given their raging and heretofore unimagined ineptitude, I’d thought it might be nice to make sure I could actually return from the trip I’d booked with them before I unleashed The Fury of My Blog on The Worst Travel Website Ever. Well, I’m back now, so buckle up, Bravofly, you’re about to learn exactly what I think of you.

P.S.- If you’re looking for a rather funny disaster-story, it’s in here, promise, but if you really aren’t up for a ridiculously pissy, damn-it-Nina’s-at-it-bitching-again, ragingly ridiculous rant, you might could just mosey on over to the rest of this blog and avoid the following:

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Nina’s Travel Rule #38: EVERY Day Is Speedo / Half-shirt Day

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God I miss Dos Equis...

God I miss Dos Equis…

Now this one’s for those of y’all who heard of my blog and said, ‘Great idea! But won’t you run out of stories??’ To which I responded, ‘Fuck no, I been a disaster for years…’ So let us return to the beautiful summer of 2006, when we were young, and rocks were fun. It’s a tale of dinosaurs, shitting in the desert, drunken 19 year olds, and stitches to the head. Yeah, y’all heard that right, this is actually my SECOND story involving head stitches :(

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Nina’s Travel Rule #37: Hitch-hiking Gets You Shat On By Bats

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Toobing!!!!!!!

Toobing!!!!!!!

So I’m stuck here in fuckin’ Australia, freezing my ass off (my boss told me today I look like a homeless hobo from Cats and I told him I’M COLD), but it’s July in Texas, y’all, and that means we’re off! On a venerable, nay, the most definitive excursion available in Central Texas: The Toobing Trip. You know that special time of year, when rednecks and fratboys, kids and canoers alike hop in their F-250′s, inner-tubes and ice-chests aboard, to ply the rivers (ha, like there’s rivers in Texas…) of the Hill Country in the peace and serenity of that perfect summer day. Oh, and then royally fuck themselves up on jello-shots, beer stolen from passed-out strangers, and the sight of a million bikini tops evaporating as their owners flail down the tube-chute. Yeah, that’s a water-slide for toobs. And if you ain’t from TX and that made no sense whatsoever, just read on…

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Nina’s Travel Rule #32: All You Need to Survive A Hurrication is Liquor and Cat Food

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Sandy in Full Force :(

In honor of all my peeps hunkerin’ down up there on the East Coast this week (I love you bro, go NYC??), I thought I’d recount a bit of Nina’s Adventures in Hurricane Un-preparedness. In which I survive a week without power in the sweltering Houston summer on nothing but wine and the kindness of strangers. With a parenthetical side-note on hurricane preparedness in the Big Sleazy. Omg two posts in one week, whatever shall my followers do! Prepare to shit yourselves, please…

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Nina’s Travel Rule #31: I Should Never Sing in Public, Especially Not In Bulgaria

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I am SO awesome when I sing the BA.

Bad things happen to me when I sing in public. This is no longer a randomized sample, it is a well-correlated, concrete fact. Case in point: my most recent experience of karaoke involved a well-meaning accomplice (I love you, Susan!) and a sadly put-upon Balinese guitarist who unwittingly invited disaster when he suggested that the two drunk Americanos currently funding the entire bar might want to accompany him onstage. By “stage” I mean the small corner area in which he was (badly) attempting to cover (bad) American rock songs. His “songbook” consisted of a collection of painstakingly hand-written transcriptions of his “favorite” songs, with some minimal musical notation, clearly culled from intensive radio-listening time. His vocal ability notwithstanding, these “translations” were a bit, shall we say, loose, and mainly consisted of a number of choruses without verse. After filling the request / tip jar repeatedly and heckling loudly when the only other patrons in this open-air cantina dared to suggest a different song, I think he just figured it’d be easier to get our drunk asses up there with him. We complied. And we sang. We both, in entirely novel and incompatible ways, forgot nearly every lyric to American Pie. Then we sang our favorite Stones song, which was not in fact the Stones song that he was playing. And then the bar emptied…

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Nina’s Travel Rule #28: Weird is What you Make of It

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Just a typical road race in the ATX…

So I’m running  a 12k in a couple weeks (yes, a 12k, wtf Oz, get your road race distances right!), which got me thinking about the very first race I ever ran. It was an accident, really, I hadn’t run in years and totally got suckered into it and, yes it’s true, I ran it dead drunk. But I finished! And then there was cake :) Read the rest of this entry

Nina’s Travel Rule #27: Canadians Beware, the Dinosaurs are Coming…

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Ooooo, Caaaaaanadaaaaa…

Once upon a time, a lowly graduate student (yes, me) got lucky. Her illustrious dissertation advisor (so ruggedly handsome and casually profane, he is) actually ponied up like, a dollar for her to attend an international paleontological conference (yes, like Ross on Friends, fuck that goddam show)! And so she packed her bags, prepared her presentation, grabbed her passport, and boarded her jetplane. And our fearless heroine flew and flew, crossing borders and time zones, to head once more into the grand unknown. And at what fabulous sunny locale did she alight? That’s right! Fucking Canadia. Ah well, at least it was free…

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Nina’s Travel Rule #22: Don’t Go on a Field Trip Drunk, You Will Probably Pee in Poison Ivy

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It’s 5:30 am, I’ve been asleep for about two hours, and I am completely beyond fucked up.  This is unfortunate, ’cause I’m supposed to be driving about 30 unpleasant paleontology students to the field for some fossil prospecting in about 30 minutes.  I can’t get a ride to school ’cause my ride is in a worse state than I (it’s true, bless his heart), and I’m thinking I may be too incapacitated to figure out the bus.  I know, I’ll bike!  About 20 minutes and, say, three whole miles later (so I’m a little wobbly and confuddled, so what…), at least I’m there on time.  This is when it dawns on me that I totally can’t drive, the professor I’m slaving for is narcoleptic so there’s no way in fuck I’m riding with him, and it’s shaping up to be about 110 degrees out today.  Balls.

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Nina’s Travel Rule #21: When in Transylvania, Try Not to Get Pepper-Sprayed On a Bear-Hunt

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Best. Souvenir. Ever??

After about three days meandering around Transylvania, trying to avoid more tacky Dracula-themed tourist shit than any self-respecting tourist should be forced to avoid (although yes, I did indeed purchase the above…  but it’s adorable!), it occured to us that our hostel offered something much more amazing sounding.  You know how you roll into hostels all over the world, and there’s invariably a notice board with stupid signs for “amazing” deals, used / abused camping gear, and package excursions that surely would show you amazing sights un-dreamed-of by any previous traveler while never EVER ripping you off?  And it doesn’t matter if you’re in Abu Dhabi or Paris or Idaho, everything up there always sucks?  Well, the Rolling Stone Hostel in Brasov, Romania, is the glaring exception.  (This hostel is fabulous, btw, fairlyy adorable, fairly fun, and really fucking cheap.  Also it’s purple:  http://www.rollingstone.ro/). They offer the regular Dracula Tourism crap, yeah, but they also have an add for their famous Transylvanian Bear-Watching Night, which clearly could not be passed up.  And that’s basically how I found myself in a stranger’s car with a couple crazy Romanians and my perfect travelling buddy (I love you, Chris!), drunk on crappy Romanian beer, faced with the choice of getting: a) pepper-sprayed in the face or b) mauled by a Carpathian brown bear.  Read the rest of this entry