Monday, July 25, 2011

Semper Fi

This weekend I went up to B.C.'s wine and lake country (our Okanagan region--the city of Kelowna, specifically) for a mini family reunion. I got to see several uncles and a bunch of my cousins that I rarely get to spend time with, and I had so much fun! One uncle's mother-in-law is married to a former US Marine, and I got to chat with him yesterday morning at the family breakfast we had.

He's from Arkansas, so he's got a charming Southern accent and all the swoon-worthy manners to go with it. Add in his time in the Corps, and I was in love with him in about three seconds. We talked about all sorts of military stuff, including his two tours in Vietnam. Such an interesting man, and a real sweetheart despite everything he's gone through. He and his wife live in Oahu during the winters, so they invited us to come stay with them and show us around all the historical sites. Um, yes please! Being shown around Pearl Harbor and all the other spots with a decorated former Marine? That's my idea of a great time.

He had to leave the Corps suddenly after 21 years of service, having attained the hallowed rank of Master Sergeant. For the latter part of his career, he was stationed at Camp Pendleton, just south of Los Angeles. We passed it on our way from Disneyland to Legoland this past March, and I was so excited to see a Chinook and two Black Hawks flying close to the highway.

So there we go, Kaylea has a new crush :) My hubby just smirked and shook his head at me yesterday at breakfast, but he doesn't seem mad or jealous, lol.

Got home last night and received word that both Cover of Darkness and No Turning Back have finaled in the 2011 Aspen Gold Awards! I'm kind of surprised that those two books seem to be the ones judges like best. I really think Relentless and Absolution are the best books in the series, but perhaps it takes the first few books for readers to understand the characters and story arc enough to make the last two books shine. Hmm. Something to ponder for the future if I ever do another series.

Have any of you out there met military veterans that have made an impression on you? Would love to hear your stories.


Wynter Daniels said...

Glad you had a good time and even got in some research;-) Congrats on the contest finals. I'm soooo proud of you!

Kaylea Cross said...

Thanks, Wynter. I hope this all pays off for me one day!

Do you have any military connections in your family?