Posts Tagged ‘Shepherdstown’

A Facebook Thingy Before Christmas

December 19, 2016

As I prepare for Christmas and cool down from finishing my Fall semester at CCBC, I thought I would post this Facebook thing that I beefed up.  We had snow and then freezing rain on Saturday and it was more annoying than dangerous even though there was a huge crash south of the city.  I am getting excited for Christmas as the presents I bought for people start arriving in the mail.  Posts will continue as scheduled even as I go to Shepherdstown this week.

Four names I go by:

1. Steven

My given name. It means “He who is crowned.” I love my name even though it is often used to for a random name to call lame guys in fiction. However, Eddie Izzard often uses it for a name to call characters and does not mistreat the name. I believe that spelling it with a “v” is the right way to spell it even if Stephen came about first in history.

2. Steve

I used to hate this shortened version of my name but I have learned to like it. It is so quick and casual. A lot of good friends have called me by this shortened version. However, I now have a friend/family member who goes by Steve and is in the tabletop gaming group I am in. This creates confusion but somehow we manage. I end up being Steve 2 sometimes.

3. Wolf of Words

You are reading this blog right now. It has also become my new gamer tag when I need one. If you see WolfofWords holding a gym in Pokemon Go, that is me. As I explained earlier, the wolf is a part of my family history because my family is crazy. My mom taught us to howl at the full moon because her aunt taught her to do it. I am also devoted to stories and words as a writer, an avid consumer of fiction and a student of the law.

4. KM/King

While I was in New Jersey, I created a gamer tag called Mengi around the time I created this blog. It was created for a game called StarPirates which had a great community. There was a guy in our little group playing the game who called himself LordTyrion and, to tweak his nose, I renamed myself KingMengi to outrank him. I stuck with the name through a couple games and that’s why it appears as my twitter and WordPress username.

Four places I’ve lived

1. Baltimore, Maryland

I love Baltimore. It is the city where I was born and where I have lived for 24 years (not consecutive). I love so many great places in Baltimore and I learn more and more things about it every day. If you keep reading this blog, you will find me talking about Baltimore over and over.

2. Sussex, New Jersey

Sussex is a small town in New Jersey jammed up near the borders of Pennsylvania and New York. Even though it is nearly two hours from New York City, it is still in the NYC Metropolitan area because that area is gigantic. I worked at a theater called Tri-State Actors Theater here and I lived in the back of a framing shop. The place was a little town with a two-block main street surrounded by farmland and mountains. Still, the local children were frightened of the urban dangers it might contain.

3. Matamoras, Pennsylvania

When I first moved up to work at Tri-State Actors Theater, I lived at the owner’s house just over the border in Pennsylvania. At first, I had no car and I was at the mercy of what rides were offered by the people whom I was living with. Once I had my first real car, I remember driving there really late at night. Once, I was driving over the mountain to get home and there was nearly a foot of snow on the ground and I spun out near the top. After I recovered my wits, I continued to drive. I was really stupid sometimes back then.

4. Shepherdstown, West Virginia

In the last few years, my mother moved to West Virginia along with my new stepfather. (Although, not so new anymore.) It is a great place to be as it is far from the hustle and bustle of the city and I never experienced that, even in Sussex. I worked at the house there for two years on several projects for the family business and I continue to visit for holidays.

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Shepherdstown

August 29, 2016

Welcome to Shepherdstown

While my heart will always be in Baltimore, I want to talk about another place. I have lived in Baltimore for a long time and during that whole time, my family also lived in Baltimore. We lived in Baltimore County, Roland Park, Tuscany-Canterbury and Woodberry but Baltimore was always a constant. Even when I moved to New Jersey my mom was still back in good old Charm City. They say you can never go home again but I felt that I sort of could. Then my mom moved out of the city and my brothers and I became the new proprietors of the Baltimore apartment. I’m the only one who lives there, though. Meanwhile, my mom moved out to West Virginia. I then ended up working West Virginia for two years while still going home to Baltimore every weekend. This summer I returned to Shepherdstown.

Nature

When I first hung out in Shepherdstown, I worked where I lived so I was pretty isolated. Lately, I have tried to explore the place a little and enjoy it more. The family homestead outside of Shepherdstown is beautiful. It was designed by my mom’s third husband who is incidentally my stepfather. It is situated way back off the main road out in the boonies. This is great for me because I actually like anonymity and being separated from the hustle and bustle. The apartment in Baltimore is actually separate from the hustle and bustle too despite being in the middle of the city. There’s also this stuff called nature everywhere and it’s surprisingly beautiful. I can walk outside for hours without crossing one street if I so choose to.

Country Roads

This past summer I revisited the place to do some paralegal work and then I worked on my studies. When I took a break, I was able to drive out into the area to have a little fun. So where can you have fun in the West Virginia panhandle? Well, if you want to do stuff you would do in Baltimore County, for example, you need to do some driving. Almost nothing worth doing is really close by and there isn’t really a straight road in the area either. I used to say that I hated to drive. When I started driving out in West Virginia, I discovered that I loved driving along the curvy, picturesque roads no matter what the destination was.

Martinsburg

So where is that Baltimore County-esque stuff? Well, the big box stores, chain restaurants and movie theater are all in Martinsburg. When I worked out here, I drove to Lowes in Martinsburg over and over. There is a great Japanese steakhouse called Kobe out there which does the whole show complete with knives, fire and flying shrimp. There is a small movie theater where I saw The Force Awakens for the first time. Every time I have seen a movie there, it has not been crowded at all. This is perfect since I feel claustrophobic when there are too many people in the theater. There are a lot of big box stores which are necessary evils for a person on a budget.

Shepherdstown

How about Shepherdstown itself? Shepherdstown is one part hippie town, one part college town and one part expatriates from nearby cities. It is a premiere stop in the area for tourists so everyone is friendly and welcoming and quirky. The town is full of all sorts of specialty shops and actually has a ton of restaurants. This past week, while I was off of school, I spent a lot of time hanging out in the middle of town and just soaking it all in. The town is busy while not being overly crowded and everyone looks like they’re having a good time. Even the busker on the street gave me a high five before making his pitch. It also did not hurt that Pokemon Go hit the town hard and everybody was totally cool with it.

Rumsey Park

There is a lot of history in the town as well. The area is rich in Civil War history but thankfully Shepherdstown is free of confederate flags. The town is built around Shepherd University which used to be a teaching college. So most of the historical significance has to do with the college buildings and the fact that Shepherdstown is West Virginia’s first incorporated town. It is a really cool little place to walk around (even if you’re not playing Pokemon Go). Just the other day I even discovered a new area to walk to called Rumsey Park where you can find plenty of green grass and an awesome, giant monument.

Maria's

However, I have two favorite places in town. The first is Maria’s Taqueria which is hands down my favorite place to eat in the area. In fact, it might be my favorite place to eat period. The place does not take itself too seriously and makes great Mexican-styled food. It doesn’t stress itself over making sure the food is authentic but instead makes sure it tastes good. While you can sit down, the place does a lot of take-out business with a small but simple and tasty menu. Everybody is friendly there and the place is adorned with sugar skulls as a nod to the real Mexico. The other place that I love is Beyond Comics. While I haven’t been there too often, Beyond Comics is a clean and friendly comic book store which has a great selection. I look forward to visiting there again soon.

Beyond Comics

This place is great but today my semester begins in Baltimore and I have to return to my apartment. I don’t mind because I love Baltimore. However, now I have a new place to call home too.


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