Friday, June 30, 2006

Frank Browning Ellis III

This is Frank. Frank is David's brother. David is in Japan. Frank is my new friend. Frank likes cats. Frank likes to "clean" his room.

Today was another amazing day in the Viking training program. The nice part was riding along with a tech supervisor Craig. He is a few years older than me and has been in the pest world for 6 years and he is one of the few people in this company that know anything about bugs and chemicals, so we have a lot of things to talk about. He has invited me to his apartment next weekend with some other guys for the ultimate fighting ppv thingy that is getting a lot of hype out here. It should be fun besides, I don't have much else to do.

As far as Orkin goes, I have done another test for them and am still in the hiring process. The manager hiring me is really nice in keeping me informed whenever he knows anything about what is going on and that just makes me trust him a bit more. It will be nice to work for a competent manager.

We had the stake institute class tonight and there were a few cute ones there. One of course is from Utah and is town as a nanny for 6 months, surprise. One of the cute girls will be attending BYU in the fall and that just means one less for me here in NJ. Bummer. I will just have to go into Manhattan more often for the ladies.

PS thanks to "the girls" for sending me a couple of Metro Cards, they will come in handy!

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

big bridge to long island

It looks like I will soon be moving to Long Island. I have had an interview with Orkin for a service manager position and they are now running me through the corporate hiring process, but hopefully I will be employed within a couple weeks. The nice part is that I will be in a better job with a better company with much better pay and benefits. Of course I'm going to need to find an apartment in New York that won't swallow my entire salary but I have the luxury of being mobile so I don't think I will stay in Queens. So that was my big secret and I am really excited for this new job!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Another one bites the dust

What can I say? Spencer is a married man! Danny sent me this picture hence his head is in it! Congrats to Spencer! I'm just glad I'm out here so no one can rub it in too much that I am still single.

I actually enjoyed attending the singles ward today. I saw CK, a girl that graduated from Olympus the same year and she is a nice one to be friends with. The only downside to attending the singles ward today was NJ Transit on the ride home. Apparently, a few of their platforms at the Newark Penn station were not open so everything was backed up, we sat on the tracks for 30 minutes and just watched the trains go by until it was our turn. Thank goodness for air conditioning.

Last night was a multi stake dance lesson thingy and it was fun for the first half hour then it was just a downward spiral. I think maybe some other people had fun but my attention span is only 20 minutes and the lady doing the teaching went on and on about the Cha Cha Cha! I mean come on! The hard part was that she couldn't teach it in any simple way. We did learn a waltz that was fun, until she made us do it to country song at twice the normal speed.

We just finished up the evening at a multi stake fireside that had about 40 people in attendance. The lady that did the fireside, is the same one that teaches the Morristown institute class so she was fun to listen to. Afterwards, David and I had a chance to flirt with the ladies.... I love to flirt but haven't really asked anyone out on a date yet just because I really need to get on my own before I can do that.

Well, tomorrow is another day at Viking and Tuesday(cross my fingers) will be a very good day for me. More on that later.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Nuts in NYC

Alright, I know it has been a few days since I have written as Megan pointed out to me but I have a good reason an I will explain it to you when I am able.

This week has been more training and fooling around with Viking. I can't say it is any easier getting through the red tape of the NJ dmv but I think I am making some headway. This morning, I was at another branch of the company to do a training class to get my pest license and I thought I saw the clock move backwards. Our instructor had to have been at least 70 and couldn't say more than one sentence without sounding like he was falling asleep. I know I have to do these classes to get licensed but I really wish that I could just avoid it all together. The nice thing about hopping from office to office here in the company is that I am able to see which branches have the cute secretaries..... There are a few really cute ones and there are a few that truly represent New Jersey.

This pic is one I took a few weeks ago on Doomsday over in NYC. I think that it was just publicity for the Omen movie but I still think they are nutty. Tonight is Institute for this stake and tomorrow night, they will be having a dance so it might be enjoyable.

Monday, June 19, 2006

The old ballgame

What I was hoping would be a great singles activity was in fact a regional activity for everyone and we didn't get a chance to meet any females but we did have a great time attending this evening's Mets game. I felt like I was living back in Texas attending a Rangers game. Sandy Alomar Sr, was the first base coach for one of the teams. Even the great Ken Griffey Jr was there playing on the reds. We left right before the 7th inning just so we could make it home at a decent hour. They also had Missionaries sing the National Anthem. They could have used some more practice but what's the point in complaining? There was one section across the stadium that was full of white shirts and ties, my guess is that the entire mission was there.

I was hoping to make it through the DMV today and have a Jersey drivers license but I have discovered that Utah is not as backwards as I one thought. I was pushed from one station to another and told so many different things that I am not sure even now that I know what I need to do to get a new one. I almost think that it would be easier to just take the test all over again and get it over with.

As far as work goes, I am up for more tech training tomorrow with another ride along at the Denville branch. I have also decided it would be easier to just rent a room for the time being until I find a place that I really want to live. There are many more affordable rooms that will suit me fine until I am ready to pay 1500 for an apartment! Good grief!

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Guess Who?

I almost slept through church today considering I didn't get to sleep until around 2 this morning but David was persistent and I made my way into the city to attend the singles ward. I really wasn't too excited to go mostly because it was just a 1 hour meeting because of the Gladys Knight concert and they were combining with the family ward at the same time. I am glad I did go because I saw Nancy and Steve Mcdonald outside the building on my way crossing the street. They were in town because Steve has some business up in White Plains. When we got inside, I saw the Stevens family from the Grandview second ward. They were in town because their son-in-law graduated from medical school and the ceremony was here. After the meeting I talked with some of the females of the ward and made some headway in the never ending battle of breaking the ice.

Back here Jersey side, I have just been enjoying the night with Grant and Lisa (David's brother and his fiance) and playing some more video games. Tomorrow I will be going up to the Saddlebrook office and doing some more training. If I am able to sneak away early, there is a multi stake activity going to a Mets game and I think that should be really fun. It is quiet now and I think most everyone has gone to bed so I might as well join them.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Oh what a night!

David, Christine, Archie, Damien
This Saturday consisted of me being a lazy bum and playing video games here at the Ellis home most of the morning and afternoon. There was a brief moment when I left to go pick up my laundry and drop by the grocery store but that was about it. However, around 7pm, David Christine and I left to go to Long Beach Island. It was a nice place to visit other than the sun setting in the west and not over the water. We went down there because Damien (next to me in the photo) is the night manager at a restaurant there that claims to have the best wings. Well this little place had the best wings I have ever tasted! The place is called The Chicken or the Egg and they are open 24 hours a day and serve everything on the menu all the time. It is a seasonal place so they are closed in the winter but they had a great place to eat at. One item I will have to try nest time is a Dragon burger. It's a hamburger with bacon and eggs on it and that may sound gross to some but it just makes me hungry.

The whole place down there is really neat. As you drive down the main street, you can look down the side streets and see the ocean on one end and the river on the other so it really is a skinny island, I think that it will make an excellent date place once I find a girl I would like to date.

On a side note, it is definitely buyer beware at the grocery stores here in Jersey. Last night after institute, we bought some deli pizzas to bring home and eat but we never ate them because they were moldy.... what are you gonna do?

Friday, June 16, 2006

What are you gonna do aboudit?

I may not sound like I am from Jersey but I am not talking like one. I was riding today with one of the techs from the company and I noticed that at the end of every sentence I would end with the classic Joisey phrase; But what are you gonna do.... I think that makes me official or stupid, I haven't decided which.

Last night, was the Morristown institute class. It felt nice to be surrounded by Utah girls again. Most of the people in that class(there were 16) were nannies from Utah and they were cute too. I think that this might work for me because they all live more than 30 miles from me and that means that I can flirt but not date because of the distance. Lucky me!

I have a nice lead on an apartment that I am checking out in a couple minutes. It's in Cranford and hopefully it works out, if not, I will keep on looking. I think I got most of the smoke smell out of my hair that I got today while riding along with David. Not Judo David, this guy was the tech that I rode with. I liked him, he is a hard worker and likes his customers and other than the smoking it was a great day.

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

A Viking Man Am I

Today was my first day with Viking, and what a day it was. I got there around 8:30 this morning and met up with Dan, he is the owner's son and a decent salesman. He walked me through the basics of doing a map of the home and how they make their bids. It is quite different from me walking around a house and just giving a number, They actually do measurements and have charts for the rates. At least I won't have to do any bug learning, although I did find out they have an insect here called a cave cricket and from what I have heard, I am afraid of it too. It is a large cricket that has big hairy legs like a spider and when this cricket is disturbed, it leaps in your general direction.... I am not looking forward to that one.

I wasn't able to make it to the Joseph Smith statue like I hoped because once again I got lost and it took me a hour to get back to the Ellis house. I am just happy to start work again. I am hoping to try a different route tomorrow and see fit that will make the commute any easier. The more I think about things, I realize that it would be best to stay somewhere around Westfield. Even if it makes for a longer drive to work at least I can come home to a nice area.

Tonight calls for some ice cream. I stopped by the store after dropping off some laundry (the cute girl wasn't there that normally is) and picked up a half gallon of chocolate peanut butter cup. I want to just sort of soak in the paperwork that I went through today.

David and Damien need some help keeping time for their workout so I am heading down to the basement. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Westfield garbage

This is some of our salvage work from Sunday night. David and I set up the system yesterday afternoon in his basement so now he can have an even better workout experience. I just got a few books out of people's garbage, but there was a really nice wood table top I was considering and also an old style radio cabinet with record table. The garbage here in Westfield is nicer than anything you can find at the DI.

I have accepted the position at Viking Pest Control and start tomorrow at the Denville office. It will be nice to get back to work and stay busy again. I have enjoyed hanging out with the Ellis family but I am ready to be on the move again. I spent this morning riding around the towns out here looking for some available apartments on the little back-streets. I did find one that was within walking distance of the train and even better, walking distance to Cossimo's place. Speaking of that, David came to work out with Judo David yesterday and brought a pizza with him for us. MMMMMMM. It is without a doubt the best pizza I have had in my life. I haven't even found anything in the City that compares. I was talking to him about it and he said that his mom and dad are full Italian and emigrated over here. Everything they cook with is fresh homemade and they use only the best cheeses. I am hungry just typing all this up. So anyway, the place I saw was really close and even though my job might be a bit of a drive it would be nice to stay close here.

I will be going to the Morristown institute this coming Thursday though just to meet some new people and ask around about apartments up there. I have heard they have a decent size class so I will be on the prowl once again. I am hoping to go to NYC again tomorrow night to see the Joseph Smith statue in lower Manhattan before it comes down. That will also be a good time to try more pizza!

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Look who's getting married!

First things first, I got a call this morning while David and I were riding the train to Newark from Angie and she had some happy news to share. She and Bret are engaged! Congrats!

Today was a Puerto Rican holiday, and there were a million people everywhere I went today. The weather was perfect for partying and the people here had fun partying today. The singles ward was boring but I think that is mostly due to the fact that David and I were at a YSA activity last night a few stakes over with a bunch of Latinos playing basketball and volleyball. Since we didn't speak spanish, we had a hard time talking but that didn't keep us from acting like goofballs, that just came naturally. We had a little guy on our team that was great at getting the ball from the other team, the only downside was that he tackled them in the process. Ward ball is much more interesting here in Jersey.

I didn't see anyone famous today but that is alright, I did meet some more cool people at the ward though. They were interns of course, but at least I will have some cool people for a few weeks before they move back to wherever they came from. I forgot to pick up tickets today to the Gladys Knight event next weekend. She will be coming to town and performing at the building with her choir from Vegas and a lot of people are excited to hear her sing. Maybe I can call someone who has extras... something to think about.

I finished up my evening with David and Frank driving around Westfield going through people's garbage. Tomorrow is the day that the trucks come and take away the big stuff and people here throw away some good junk. Why do we take it??? Because it's free!

Saturday, June 10, 2006


So here is my favorite picture of Moo. She is soooo cute! I really miss her smokers voice and the repetition of any word over and over and over and over again.

This morning, I rode my motorcycle into NYC. It wasn't as much fun as I expected it to be but still fun to cruise down Broadway and the West Side Highway on my boy. It was a very pretty morning and I went to Manhattan to the stake service project. What a turnout... Actually only about 10 people showed up and 3 of them were married. We split up into groups, I was paired with Garth from Idaho and we pushed the sprayer contraption up and down the street. At one point, we got tired of using the crosswalks every time to get to the island and wash the benches so we ran up the street against traffic. It made the whole service project feel a bit more dangerous. The man who was providing the machines thought it was a dumb thing to so but we just kept on going.

I have discovered my name is now Ahhchy. Most people here are unable to say Archie so I am fine with it.

After the service I walked around with a couple ladies and we got some food up the street from the temple. I had a wonderful peach smoothie. Mmmmm. Both of the girls are interns so they will only be here for a month or two at the most before moving on to another job. It's sad when all the people that showed up to this thing were just temporary, oh well, I guess people are busy.

A highlight of the morning was driving across the George Washington Bridge. What a mass of bridge! Not to mention the tons of cars lined up to get into the city! I don't know how they do, but they do. It was pretty and had a nice view of both Jersey and NYC.

Friday, June 09, 2006


Just going through the pics on my phone and saw this one of Daniel and couldn't resist using him as the post pic. It's crazy how much I miss those kids (the rest of the fam too). I think I will give Moo the honor tomorrow.

I received a job offer yesterday from Viking as a salesman. It is a decent offer but I am taking a couple days to chew it over and see if anything else surfaces before accepting. The location of that branch is in a town called Denville. They were saying that right over from Denville is Morristown which is supposed to be a great fun place to live... It also has a direct train into the city so that would make a couple things easier. I am heading over later this afternoon to look at the place and get a feel for apartments in the area.

Tonight is the Stake Institute class, there will be a new pair of teachers and hopefully a few more YSA as well. Too bad I'm not in Salt Lake, I have heard that Kenny Mays is doing a great job of keeping the Regional class entertained. David is taking off on a camping trip with his inner city branch so I just might fly solo at the class but that is fine. It's better than camping with the humidity, that is something that I may never adjust to.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

On top of the City

I spent Tuesday afternoon wondering through the streets of NYC with the Kennington girls again. We met up with each other down at South Ferry as they got off from seeing the Statue of Liberty, and caught a train uptown. The picture taken was a masterpiece done by myself in the mirrors on top of the Empire State Building. What a view from the top! The only thing I should note is that it can get warm bundled together waiting in lines to get to the top but we made it up there very fast and I don't even want to imagine what the wait would be like on a busy day!

Yesterday was also a great day for me to figure out the trains to get from Jersey to New York. They are clean and not complicated to use which is great for anyone hoping to avoid some crazy germ wars. Ideally, I would love to find an apartment somewhere along the other train lines that go to New York without a transfer just to speed up the process. However, this is a really nice safe area to live so a place near Westfield would be alright as well.

The motorcycle weather is very bad here. It has been one week and still no ride... I am hoping that the weather will improve by Sunday at the latest so I can go for a ride downtown, just to make some more noise. I am jealous when a motorcycle passes me so really, I just want to show off my Boy!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Looking for some Hot Stuff

Once again Kareoke has captured the hearts of another family. Monday night family home evening with the Ellis family will always be remembered as the night of the killer whale mating call. It was without a doubt the most original night of performances, starting with David's rendition of Hot Stuff sung in a beautiful falsetto.

Monday morning, I had my first interview with Viking Pest Control. It was great, I threw a few Gilbertisms their way and they had no choice to agree with the logic of my bug killing grandfather. They will meet with me again this coming Thursday and we will go over some more basics and find a fit for me there.... Hopefully. If not, I will start the search one again.

I did discover this morning that New Jersey government is nothing more than a giant mess of red tape and fees. I looked into transferring my pest license and found a series of classes and tests and payments required. I will let the company take care of that one. Overall, I still like it here and can't wait to get a place of my own so everyone can come visit.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

The girls and me!

What a day. Sunday was my first chance to take the rugged Tundra and see how my boy would do in the city. Other than taking the Holland Tunnel and ending up downtown, the day was amazing.(The Lincoln Tunnel would have put me Uptown where I needed to be) After finally finding parking just 3 blocks from the temple, I met up with Loni and Scooter and we were able to chat before the singles ward started. I can't believe that I was foolish enough to think that there wouldn't be any crazy people in the ward!! There are plenty and I can't wait for the next testimony meeting. Of course this meeting was special because we saw MITT ROMNEY in the foyer! Holy cow! I am thinking of becoming Republican now that I was so close to him.

After church, we made our way down to a pizzeria and had ourselves a few slices, nothing as good as cossimo's, but good enough for lunch. We then explored a small part of central park and saw Chris Noth from Sex and the City, a rollerskating dance party, crazy people fishing in the pond and large men wearing verylittle clothing. What a city!

By this point, we were pretty much out of steam so we climbed back in the truck and drove Downtown just for the fun of it. I will admit that driving here is much more fun than in Utah. Here you can do things that Utahns pull guns out over. It is the survival of the fittest and quickest when it comes to traffic out here. I am proud to say that I can cut people off as well as any cabbie out here.

It's just a matter of time before I get bored of this place but I hope it never happens.

Mmmmm..... Pizza

I knew the pizza was good here but I never knew it would be as good as it was yesterday. David and I went to downtown Westfield to eat at his friends restaurant, Cossimo's. Let's just say, that everything was fresh and homemade, the crust was crunchy and the sauce was perfect. Oh boy. I really will need to limit myself to pizza just once a week or things may get out of hand.

The best part so far about living out here are the townships. Imagine a dozen Sugarhouses spread out over an area of 10 miles. These places are full of people walking the street looking at the different shops and diners to eat at. It's great, of course parking will always be an issue but I love the way things are set up out here. Now if we can just get the sun to come out so I can go for a motorcycle ride.

I will be leaving the Ellis house in a few minutes and try to navigate my way into New York City to attend the singles ward. The thought of going to a singles ward is scary but not as scary as my options of not attending there. I am really hoping that the ward has it's share of nutcases to remind me of church back in Utah.

Other than that, I am just waiting for my job interview tomorrow at Viking Pest Control, finding an apartment and looking for girls. Nothing too exciting but I'm enjoying it anyway. Except for missing Dano and Moo like crazy!

Friday, June 02, 2006

Why New Jersey?

I really thought that once I moved out here that I wouldn't have to explain my reasons for leaving Utah.... Come to find out, everyone that I have talked to here thinks that I am crazy to leave Utah for a place like this.

I arrived here in Westfield 10:30pm Eastern time Thursday June 1. The drive to get here was one of the best experiences that I have had since serving my mission. I started the drive Monday evening after watching The Apprentice with the family. I was armed with pizza, crackers, cookies, brownies, water, milk, 4 cds and a trailer full of my remaining life posseions including my motorcycle.(I was able to take him around the block earlier before the rain hit... I missed him) My top speed on the trip never exceeded 70mph which I know is not like me at all but in an effort to get decent gas mileage, my average speed was 60 the whole way. My favorite part would have to be the plains. I like being able to see more than past the next road sign which doesn't happen here.

This morning, I found myself a safe storage rental and put everything away until I find a place to rent out here. Got lost returning my Uhaul trailer, the nice thing about that was, it let me learn a little more about the different expressways and turnpikes they have out here, I found a really long way of getting to Newark airport. It really was fun!

Well that is about all I have time for, I will put some more traveling stories in here when I can remember them. Thanks for all the help in getting out of Salt Lake between the food and muscle, I am grateful.