Friday, May 21, 2010

Stuff in my yard

And did this little bombshell really surprise anyone:

No, I didn't think so.

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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Tax Day

Went to the Tax Day rally just up the street for a few minutes, and saw this sign. Pretty must lost interest in life in general because nothing will ever be as awesome as this sign:


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Saturday, April 10, 2010

Hello old age

I just pulled a grey hair out of my head. I guess that means I can start my midlife crisis now?

Ooh! I know what I'll do! On every webzone I frequent I'll just drop in some unsolicited advice, which will be the best advice ever, because I am a wise elder now. I am world-weary and wise from my decades of experiences. Everyone will pause and listen to and follow my sage wise sageness. It's gonna be awesome!


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Friday, April 9, 2010

I last saw Gravy being chased by a Holstein into a neighbor’s yard

No that’s not a LCD-induced vision; it’s my poor kitty cat being chased by white-with-black-spots-and-no-tail cat. I was feeding a lizard and saw out the window little Gravy kitty trotting around the yard. Then I saw the WwBSaNT cat trotting behind her. Then I saw Gravy look back to see she was being followed and speed up her trot. They went out of the view of the window, so I ran out to that side of the yard, and found no trace of either cat. Meanwhile, Biscuit was on the inside of the door, but could tell an intruder was on the outside somewhere. So he bravely stayed inside when I told him to go outside and find his buddy. I hope Gravy is alive when I get home. Thanks for protecting your friend, Biscuit.
And yes I’m complaining about cats running amok outside when I should keep them inside. Cats are wild animals and need to roam.

[UPDATE] She's alive.


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Sunday, April 4, 2010

Stuff in my yard

No wind or rain to knock all the petals off before enjoying it!

Didn't even have to go to DC for cherry blossoms.

More cherry tree.

More cherry tree.

Lizard sez: I'll have some of the blossoms, please.

New life

Woodpecker eyeing the kitties

Cardinal eyeing the kitties

Cardinal eyeing the kitties

Biscuit eyeing the birdies


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Saturday, April 3, 2010

San Diego 2010: My vacation and Hubby’s “not a vacation”

This post is long, but there are purdy flower pictures below the fold

We went there for a military conference, so that meant I had to occupy myself while Hubby was busy during the day. I was lucky enough to convince my dad to come down so we could see desert wildflowers together (the timing was just too good to pass up).

Sunday: Butt crack of dawn flight, got to the hotel around noon, after a very long time at the rental car facility. Hubby got an upgrade from a sedan to a Explorer. We had 5 people and their giant suitcases to fit, so that fact alone was enough to need an Explorer. That thing ended up being very nice, a new one, with the two extra seats in the back. So we were able to drive that around town with big groups of our friends. Thank you tax payer.

After check in, we really needed some lunch bad, and Hubby being the ex-longterm resident of San Diego, was going to take us to a place he liked from like 20 years ago. Before we left he looked the place (Carlos Murphy’s) up online, saw they had a web page with address and everything, and called it good. Garmin took us to a nice outdoor mall, with Hubby saying “I don’t remember this being here.” Bad sign, and a foreshadowing for how this search would turn out. We wandered around the mall, didn’t find it, plugged in an alternative address for the place (the address you get when you plug in Carlos Murphy’s into Google Maps). When we got close to the place, we could tell that not only was that particular restaurant not going to be there, it was a safe bet that no restaurant had ever been in the area. It was a medical/industrial park. We had passed at least one real sit down Mexican restaurant and a couple taco stands between the mall and this medical park. We why didn’t just turn back around and hit one of those, I don’t know. We ended up driving by a strip mall with a Chili’s out front and a Kripple Kreme next store over. Kripple Kreme come from the reaction of driving by the place, and while two of the girls were in midsentence screamed out in unison: “Krippa Kreme!! Krippa Kreme!!” They were so excited they couldn’t even say the words. It was awesome. And Kripple Kremes are darned tasty. Too bad Maryland sucks and only has a couple. So, we ate at Chili’s (what is it with us and hitting up Chili’s whenever we travel? How unimaginative are we?) And hit up Kripple Kreme’s after.

So, finally had food in our bellies, spent probably two hours making fun of Hubby and his mannerisms. Got back to the hotel in time for the rest of our friends to be looking for dinner. They had a restaurant in mind, down in Gas Lamp district. (We ended up spending a lot of time there. It’s a cool place and nicely set up.) This ended up being a nice steak place. We pulled to car over nearish to the place, we all got out to walk the half block while Hubby parked the car. As we’re walking up the block, we see a silver Explorer backing into a spot right in front of the entrance! Yes, Hubby has found the perfect parking place. We paused to enjoy the moment, as it will never ever happen again for our entire lives. Anyway, food. Steak place. It was super good (I only had appetizer). No need to say more. OK, fine: tasty.

Monday: First day of me being bored while Hubby was busy. I think this was the day I had a breakfast of Kripple Kremes (those things stay good for a long time if kept in the box and the humidity is high) and then a Maritime-themed-business Espresso Drink in the courtyard of the hotel. That was a lot of sugar and caffeine to work through, so sorry for all the tweets. Don’t remember what we did for lunch, it was probably just something simple at the hotel. Dinner was a social event I invited myself to. Mexican them, but food was pretty bad. You would think they could find a caterer in San Diego who did good Mexican food. By the time everyone was good and drunk, it was time to move the party to Gas Lamp. We went to Whiskey Girl, which I have to say, is a really cool place. Normal bar, the guy played lots of good music (until requests started and the 90% white crowd got a ton of shitty rap to be played). It was good people watching as drunk people just have a hard time getting along with each other. Like the young guy trying to move in the girl who had all her drinks paid for by some old married dude. And the Shanks. Oh Jesus the Skanks. There were lots of them. It was a Monday night. Anyway, my dad got in late, met us at the bar, met my friends while they were all loud and drunk. He seems to still like them, though. Our group ended up closing down the place. (At 1:30! What happened to 2??) Lots of scuffles outside where I was waiting for the second or third tab-paying and shots-rounds to finish up. One taxi driver in particular was being a real dick to the bike-taxi guy, since the two bike taxis were in the empty spot at the curb the taxi driver though his car should be. Guy in bad shape in the half pass out stage, being held up by two friends, puked on the sidewalk. Skanks exiting the bar walked through it in their skank shoes: awesome. Finally a worker dude threw a bucket of water to wash away the puke (not mine this time!). Got everyone back to the hotel without barf inside the car.

Tuesday: Day 1 of Anza-Borrego flowers. Henderson Canyon and Coyote Canyon (so, North side of the park). We actually heard coyotes while at Coyote Canyon! We pretty much were driving aimlessly around, following signs and stopping when the flowers were pretty. Something I found out about myself: I am so much of a control freak, I get physically ill when not driving. So, we had to pull over because I almost barfed (was kneeling in the sand too close to a bunch of ants. Didn’t get bit, but it made me nervous). Turns out my puke place was pretty good flower viewing. There were lots of cacti there, and we didn’t really see much anywhere else in the park.

Me in Henderson Canyon area. (Mom will love the visible bra strap.) Taken by my dad using his camera with Godzilla attached.

A boy and his camera. Henderson Canyon area.

This is one picture I was hoping for when coming out to the desert. I wish the ground had been more cracked, though. Henderson Canyon area.

Henderson Canyon area with Godzilla.

So more driving aimlessly, found a good pasture of flowers near or at Henderson Canyon. Went back to the country club we had passed earlier for lunch. It was yummy, and the weather was so nice! Found the Visitor’s Center to finally get a pace of the darned place and figure out where we were going. Then Coyote canyon where there were less numbers of flowers, but there was lupine there.

I like to buck the establish photography community by having the thing you expect to be in focus out of focus. Yeah, that's it. Totally on purpose, that was. More like: what I think would look good in my head does not end up looking good.

At least the thing in the center is in focus this time

Like the tall thing with red honey suckle flowers, this particular cactus was all over the park, in various stages of growth. Some were huge with tones of little arms coming out, most were pretty small.

This was a very good lizard. He let us get very close taking all our pictures of him.

Coyote Canyon

My favorite. Coyote Canyon.

I'll call this one a Desert Creeper.

While most of the other flowers and cacti has areas where they were either thick or nonexistent, this plant was pretty much everywhere, although not always flowering.

Dinner I think was me and my Dad at a super tasty Italian place on Coronado. He knew about the place from when he and my mom had driving through town, and he had two reviews for places. They had gone to the other place that time, but he said this place was way better. He even was going to set up a reservation for when he’s in town again for a car show next week.

Wednesday: Day 2 of Anza-Borrego flowers. South end of the park, where we had heard was good viewing from the purser at the country club restaurant. A disappointment as there wasn’t much to see. Not many flowers and not many different cacti either. We did have to go through Border Patrol checkpoints, and I may have used international data rates on the iPhone even though we never left the country. Ran across two illegal immigrant relief points, with the water and the shade. Didn’t see anything moving in the hills, but we wondered why anyone would come though that way in the first place. The terrain is very hilly. There are much easier ways to come though. Like through some poor rancher’s land.

Probably a red-tailed hawk, But Sibley doesn't really show any hawks that have so much red in the wing area. South end of the park, near the illegal immigrant relief points. We should attach camera gear to these guys.

Near the illegal immigrant relief spots. I don't care if this picture is cliched, I was hunting for it as soon as I saw train tracks

Dinner was back in Gas Lamp for Indian. This dinner was me, Hubby, dad and three other friends. We were fetching my friends from a social cocktail hour, they were pretty much gone by the time we asked them to sit still in the car without throwing up for 15 minutes. One of the people with us was a small Asian woman who happens to lack the ability to metabolize alcohol. So she had had like 4 or 8 or 12 (depending on who you talked to) wines before getting in the car. She barfed all through dinner. Not at the table or anything, just had to leave for the bathroom many, many times. We got a tasty appetizer of chicken deep fried in a chickpea breading, the tandoori mixed grill, chicken tika masala (of course), a lamb vindaloo and a shrimp vindaloo, and a whatever the chickpeas is called. (Rogan josh? Don’t remember.) We probably should have gotten one more meat, as we usually get one dish for each diner. We did when you count the tandoori, but the portions of the entrees were just a bit on the small side. Anyway, food was super good, we were trying to get our friend in bad shape to eat a little of the rice, the naan, anything. Finally was we get the check she says “OK, I’m hungry.” So we got another of the chicken cracklins appetizer (those things are effing delicious) and I thought another meat but I don’t remember anything else coming out to the table. Oh yes. She really likes veggies better than meat so she got a plate of chopped veggies. Not sure how good cucumber is at absorbing alcohol but whatever.

On the way to the car we walked past a bar with a big picture window and a mechanical bull inside. The previously almost-pass-out-with-alcohol-poisoning girl stopped short and declared her desire to ride the bull. So we went in, paid her fee, got video of it, and left. She was wearing track pants or whatever you call the slick material pants so she was disappointed that she didn’t stay on longer. Apparently she’s an expert at this and knew she would have done much better had she been wearing jeans. Did not know that about her!

That was probably the end of the night. I don’t actually remember. Hubby and I were moved to a hotel just down the street by this point, since he registered late and there was another conference starting Thursday. Hubby had spent the day at the zoo while I was in the desert, so it was probably an early night for us.

Thursday: My dad left for the airport early, called me at 9am for me to go back and retrieve his shirt. He was already home at that point! That must have been an early flight! And his shirt is still sitting at my house waiting to be mailed.

I pretty much had the afternoon to myself. I got my hair cut by a nice lady named Dottie, and then I walked around Balboa Park for a couple hours for more pictures. I took some, but I didn’t really explore too much of the different areas. There was a dog park and I was tempted to scare all the owners by barging in and taking pictures of all the doggie faces (faces not feces). I decided against this for fear of being arrested.

Balboa Park

Skiddish lizard at Balboa Park. He ran away while I was trying to get closer.

For dinner we met our regular group at the sports bar on the resort property. We didn’t know this when plans were being arranged, but there was a big (in all uses of the word) group of Kentucky fans watching the March Madness nonsense. The game had just started when we were getting close to being done and these people cheered at Every. Goddamned. Point. So we tried looking up the Cornell fight song and what their mascot even is. The only fight song I found was an mp3 of the band version, so no words. Anyway, countermeasures failed and we popped smoke. I think we just ended up being lazy and went to the room of one of the guys in the group, drank the last of his vodka, and went back to our room when the police was called. At 9:30pm. The cop (he looked like a real cop with the mall security rentacop bravely standing behind him) told us to break it up or take it outside. Let me get this straight cop: we either have to break up our little shindig at 9:30 at night because at most three people are bothered (side, side, upstairs) or take it outside where we can bother 10 or more people? The choice was easy! We went outside where they had nice little cafĂ© tables set up in front of each unit. But we’re nice people, so we really did try to keep quiet. But also, we were hanging out in this guy’s room as a time to formulate our next plans, which we did for another hour or so. They all wanted me to drive them someplace. I said it’s bedtime, as our flight was the next day. Not early, but I still wanted to get some packing done. So Hubby and I headed back to our hotel, and I don’t know what the party animals ended up doing.

Friday: Breakfast at the original resort with our flying buddies, then flight, then getting home at like 1 in the morning. Kitties had an empty food bowl and growling tummies because they were too stupid to knock over the food bag I left open for them. Honestly, out of three cats I would have expected more from them. One time they ripped a hole in the bag, so I thought leaving the bag open would make it easier for them. And all the fishies lived and all the lizzies lived. Which is more than I can say about last year this time when we left the house under the protection of a long time friend of ours.

The End. This post has 2722 words. That’s gotta be a record for the little amount of information conveyed.

The road goes ever on.

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