Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby esm » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:44 am

I was in Gulf Shores, AL for Christmas with my family. I went to the Alabama Gulf Coast Zoo, which has a "lemur encounter", where you can play with young red ruffed lemurs and black & white ruffed lemurs. I actually looked this up and asked my parents if we could go, since it's only a few hours away from where my parents are.

It was one of the best experiences of my life. Lemurs are the best. They jumped on me and licked my face. They were super sweet! I went back to play with them the next day. Overall, the zoo was really cute. There was a little petting zoo, where we could feed goats, sheep, donkeys, etc.

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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby TotallyUncool » Fri Dec 29, 2017 8:52 am

lemurs always look like they would be so much fun - sort of like playful, long-faced cats with hands. XD
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby CaptainBerryzGiraffe » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:12 pm

my boss from the summer still hasn't payed me ~$450 he owes me and I've been bugging him about it-- today he sends me $1000 with the message "sorry for the delay" :inlove:
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby TotallyUncool » Fri Dec 29, 2017 5:43 pm

That's good! :o
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby CaptainBerryzGiraffe » Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:24 am

Yep! I was thinking about going to California in mid-January for a trip, but the thing is I'm pretty sure car rentals are super expensive for my age (I'm only 20) and I don't even know how to begin checking those sorts of things so... we'll see if that happens lol.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby boinsie » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:11 am

Most car rental services won't rent out to you until you're 21 years old (and even those charge fees). Companies that rent to 19+ include Fox (you'd have to pick up the rental all the way over in Buffalo, NY, $14 fee per day), and Hertz (many more NYC locations for pickup, $35-$45 fee per day).

EDIT: Oh! Unless you meant that you would be flying to CA and want a rental car once there? If that's the case, there are more Fox rental places in CA that might be conveniently located.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby CaptainBerryzGiraffe » Sat Dec 30, 2017 2:02 am

^ lol yeah, I'm from NY, I have a car here in NY :) I would be looking for ones over in CA. I will look into Fox then, and seeing as I'd only be going for a few days it might be worthwhile...
Is CA's transportation system crap like NY, or is it relatively good? Can you get from the airport to places without a car, or is it way more stressful? (For those CA people)
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby esm » Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:29 am

Not from CA but I can already tell you you’d want a car because there are nice things outside the city you’d might want to see.

Where in CA are you going? If you’re going to Southern California... I was there in March and I used Uber to go everywhere, and compared to Chicago, you generally have to wait longer for one, it takes longer to get around, and it’s overall more expensive. And Chicago isn’t great lol. We were going to rent a car but I didn’t have my license with me and my friend didn’t have a credit card to leave with them, so neither of us could rent lol.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby boinsie » Sat Dec 30, 2017 3:54 am

You say NY's public transportation is crap, but lol no, it's so much better and more exhaustive than most (??) other USA cities. Which is mostly telling about America's public transit system as a whole, but... anyway.
CA is gigantic, we need more information about where you'll be going.
If you're going to the Bay Area, public transit is relatively plentiful, and car parking is cramped and impossible. You could probably get away with public transit easily unless you have very specific places you're wanting to go. Even if their public transit isn't considered as good as NY's, I think you'll be very frustrated trying to drive.
If you're going to LA, I would definitely recommend a car. The city (and surrounding sprawl) is large and spread out, and a lot of the items of interest aren't even in the city proper. My husband and I are planning to fly down in Feb/March for our anniversary and yeah, rental car will absolutely be a must.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby erilaz » Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:06 am

Largely just confirming what boinsie said, but I already wrote it, so....

The San Francisco Bay Area, especially the city itself, has pretty decent public transportation. I've lived here for over 30 years and never had a car. Lots of people use Uber and Lyft here — so much so that it causes traffic problems in downtown S.F. I don't use those rideshare services myself, but I do sometimes take advantage of friends with cars to get to far-flung outlying areas, especially in the South Bay. Parking is very difficult (or expensive) in places like downtown S.F. and around U.C. Berkeley, so having a car in those places is often more of a hindrance than a help.

The Los Angeles area is much more difficult to do by public transit, partly because everything's so spread out, so even if transit options are available, don't expect to get anywhere fast. I've managed to get where I needed to go using Metro Rail and buses on a few short trips to L.A., but I wouldn't recommend it for more extensive travel or sightseeing.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby TotallyUncool » Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:12 pm

Pretty much confirming what everyone else is saying - the Bay Area has civilized mass transit, and in the L.A. area, you pretty much need either a car, a jet backpack, or the ability to teleport. Metro Rail and Metrolink (the full-size commuter train system) are good for the places that they do reach, but there are still far more places that they don't go. Metro rail is building an extension to LAX, but at the moment, none of the airports have train service.
I actually take the train to work every so often, but it's a 40 mile trip each way (not an unusual commuting distance in California), requiring four different rail lines, and it feels more like an epic quest than a daily commute. :fear:
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby erilaz » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:22 pm

TotallyUncool wrote:Metro rail is building an extension to LAX, but at the moment, none of the airports have train service.

The free shuttle between LAX and the Metro Rail is pretty convenient, though.

I don't have to stretch my memory that far back to remember when you couldn't take the train to airports in the Bay Area, either. BART didn't have a station at SFO until 2003, and the weird little AGT extension to Oakland Airport has only been around for three years.

In addition to the trains, there are also buses. From my limited experience with buses in the L.A. area, they seem pretty decent, and they have cheaper fares than buses in the Bay Area. I took the bus from LAX to Torrance to spend money at the Rolling Hills BOOK-OFF when I was down there in 2009, and in 2015 I used the bus to travel between my motel in Little Armenia, Amoeba Music Hollywood, The House of Blues Sunset Strip (to see SCANDAL), and Glendale (to shop for Armenian books). I also managed to get from LAX to Malibu by bus 20 years ago, when we had Mythcon at Pepperdine University. But yeah, buses aren't ideal if you want to go to a lot of places that aren't near each other.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby TotallyUncool » Sat Dec 30, 2017 5:53 pm

With the L. A. area, it's mostly the distance - the basic law of getting anywhere in the Los Angeles / Orange County metropolitan area is that any two given points are likely to be at least 20 to 30 miles from each other, with no really convenient route between them. XD
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby CaptainBerryzGiraffe » Sun Dec 31, 2017 9:17 am

hmmm thanks guys!!!
It'll probably be more the San Francisco Area, since a friend I want to visit lives near the Oakland area (airport and all that.)
So from what I'm gathering, to go around San Francisco itself would be pretty manageable by transit or Uber/Lyft, whereas going to other places in the area would be generally accessible by car?
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby erilaz » Sun Dec 31, 2017 2:01 pm

511.org is a useful resource for getting around the Bay Area by public transit, though Google Maps will also give you the information you need.

San Francisco: Within the city, public transit (BART and MUNI) is all you need. Driving and parking a rental car in the city would just be an expensive hassle. You don't even really need Uber/Lyft, to be honest, unless you're impatient and/or don't like buses. Even after midnight there are still a good number of MUNI "Owl" bus lines, as well as the all-nighter AC Transit buses, if you need to get to the East Bay (Oakland, Berkeley, etc.) and have missed the last BART train (been there, done that, many times).

Oakland and thereabouts: Plenty of public transit options, especially during the day, though buses on more suburban lines can be infrequent. Late at night you might not want to wait around for the less frequent buses, particularly in the dodgier neighborhoods, so you might want to Uber/Lyft then. I personally would just wait for a bus or walk, but I've lived around here since the '80s, so I know which areas to avoid at night.

A rental car is probably unnecessary in the Bay Area unless you want to go to more distant parts like Napa Valley (Wine Country) or the South Bay (San Jose, Silicon Valley).
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby Starra » Sun Dec 31, 2017 7:38 pm

I live in such a small town now that there's only one bus (no, I'm serious, it just goes around the town in a loop lol) and no trains (although that's mostly because of the massive earthquake last year that destroyed a lot of the tracks, and they weren't for local use anyway) :lol:. Wellington has shit public transport though, the trains are usually delayed and the buses are completely unreliable. Until sometime this year they still had trolley buses too :crazy:. The cables would always come off the wires or the bus would break down (though the diesel buses do that too) and they're slow as fuck.

Taking any kind of public transport gives me terrible anxiety, especially somewhere where there are so many variables and I can't rely on an exact schedule. Plus I hate being around that many people. I was okay in Japan because A) I was with my dad, B) everyone just keeps to themselves so you don't have to worry about as many things and C) everything's on time. We also avoided the busiest hours and some of the super busy train stations, which is the only reason why I didn't go to Shibuya or Harajuku.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby CaptainBerryzGiraffe » Mon Jan 01, 2018 12:35 am

^^thanks erilaz! Man, you guys are all so helpful ^-^ thanks

^In that case you'd hate NY's public transit because A) it's super unreliable and B) it's extremely crowded xD
Also Happy New Years to you since you're already in 2018 :cool:
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby rikkikow » Mon Jan 01, 2018 3:00 am

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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby erilaz » Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:38 am

TotallyUncool wrote:With the L. A. area, it's mostly the distance - the basic law of getting anywhere in the Los Angeles / Orange County metropolitan area is that any two given points are likely to be at least 20 to 30 miles from each other, with no really convenient route between them. XD

I was very lucky in that regard. I had deliberately chosen my motel on Sunset Blvd. in Little Armenia because (a) it would be easy to get from there to the House of Blues and Amoeba, and (2) Little Armenia would presumably mean "Armenian food is readily available in this neighborhood." But I hadn't really planned to go book shopping in Glendale on that trip, until I discovered just how easy it was to get there: a straight shot on the 180 bus with no transfers, practically to the front door of the Abril Bookstore. And that was a very pleasant surprise.
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Re: Random Thread ~The Duck Saga Pt. 17~

Postby Moh » Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:12 am

My mom just had back surgery on the 29th, which happens to her birthday. Great gift. :lol: She came home today.
Spoiler: show
90% of this ~battle~ was just trying to find someone who 1) took the insurance, and 2) would actually do surgery.
She was supposed to have it done close to home, but then USF's group of neurosurgeons stopped taking the insurance.
Someone in Orlando only wanted to see her if they could put in a dorsal column stimulator.
After hearing what her problems really were, that would've been like putting a band-aid on a flesh eating wound. :roll:

So she ended up having to see someone in the Port Charlotte/Punta Gorda area. Long drive!
But the surgeon's office got everything done before the end of the year, so that's cool.

She had a lumbar fusion done in 2005, and apparently one of the screws had been screwed right into a nerve root.
Turns out her L5 vertebra wasn't even attached to the L4. It was just kinda floatin' around in there. Surgeon said he'd never seen something like that before. :blink:


And since I'll probably be asleep before 12, I'll go ahead and wish y'all a Happy New Year. Hope 2018 is better than 2017. :fear:
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