Archive for May, 2011

Indian Joe

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Here’s the Indian Joe Trail at the Sunol Regional Wilderness park.  It wasn’t all that grassy.  Or smooth.  Or level.  But it was all pretty.  Part of my famous Hiking series.

Hasn’t been as long as usual since I last wrote! I’m turning over a new leaf! Maybe!

Very busy day today, followed by a very busy evening. I had to get everything at work in ship-shape shape for my vacation. Now I have to get everything at home in ship-shape shape too. Must pack, get another movie on my iPad (Johnny English, a very funny movie starring Rowan Atkinson, who, when he’s good, is very, very good), get the LDS Tools test team working at top speed and efficiency, and maybe do some other things that I can’t remember right now. But I have them written down! In Toodledo!

Which is turning out to be a to-do list program that I think I like. I finally found one!  Highly recommended, even though it’ll cost you a couple bucks.  Worth it.

Otherwise, nothing going on.  Talked with LRN3 a couple of times during the last few days.  He’s doing pretty well and things are looking up for LRN15 and him.  Hi, there, Loyal Readers!

Time to get ready to go to the Water Winter Wonderland!  I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this exciting Morrowlife employment agency job opportunity: time-traveling chimps!

See you tomorrow.

Sunol bridge

Monday, May 23rd, 2011

Here’s a pretty little bridge over a stream at the Sunol Regional Wilderness park.  LRN4 and I had a great visit there a week ago Friday and got a bit of exercise.  Walked a short and interesting nature trail, and then another short and steep trail to an overlook point of a pretty little canyon.  I’d go back.  Part of my famous Hiking series.  Great Art courtesy of my trusty old Minolta camera.

Wow.  Ten days since my last post.  And there’s been so much going on.

Really.  There really has been a lot.  Of course, the weekdays are pretty much all the same, other than what’s going on at the office, which I don’t blog about.  Otherwise, it’s working, eating, and commuting.

Well, I will talk about one thing going on at work – I’ve been reading a book I got there.  The office has subscribed to a service called Books 24×7, which is basically a repository of a gazillion business-related books in electronic form.  They send a note every week or so with a long list of new titles.  When something looks like it might be interesting, I add it to my personal reading list.  I have just about 70 books on that list now, and it just keeps getting longer.  So I’ve decided I ought to start trying to actually read a few of them.  I’m currently working on one called No Excuses: The Power of Self-Discipline, by Brian Tracy.  I’m about nine chapters into it, and it’s pretty much just another salesman pump-up book.  However, there have been a few gems in there, and I think it’s having an effect.  Self-discipline is something I could always use a bit more of.  So I’m enjoying it.  Recommended for my Loyal Readers who are interested in acquiring more self-discipline.  It also helps if you have a free subscription to Books 24×7.

Anyway, the really interesting developments around here are the weekend activities.  Really kept busy this past weekend.  It started Friday evening, when LRN4 and I had tickets to see To Kill a Mockingbird at the Gallo Center.  It was quite nicely done – was in their small theater, so there wasn’t a bad seat in the house.  Which was good, because we were way back in the cheap seats.  I took my little binoculars and was glad to have them.  Still, it looked good, sounded good, and was in all ways a very nice experience.

Saturday morning, I got up and helped my friends the McClures move to a nearby house.  They’ve sold their place in anticipation of a move to Texas, but that hasn’t materialized, so they’re in temporary quarters for a few months (presumably).  Came home, got a haircut, got cleaned up, and went to our friend Janell’s high school graduation party.  Janell is a very nice young person who really stands out in a lot of ways.  LRN4 pointed out that essentially all the people invited to her party were adults, because that’s who her friends are.  I think that’s pretty impressive.  We had a nice time there.

Got home from the party and worked on a few things around the house for a couple of hours.  Then LRN4 and I went back to the Gallo Center for a performance of Mendelssohn’s Elijah.  We got free tickets from LRN4’s friend Theresa, who I believe got them from her work.  We were way down in the expensive seats this time, and that was fun.  The tickets came with free garage parking and an invitation to a reception afterward.  We stopped in at the reception for a few minutes, but neither of us was particularly interested in meeting the conductor or the soloists or anybody else, for that matter.  All we wanted to do was sleep, so we went home.  Had a fun evening.  I had been unaware of Mendelssohn’s Elijah, but the program said it was second in popularity to Handel’s Messiah among devotees of great religious orchestral/choral works in the Victorian era, and I can see why.  The orchestra was great, the 150-member chorus was great, and the four soloists were excellent also.  LRN4 noted that all the soloists generally seemed a bit bored with the whole thing unless they were singing at the moment, but I suppose they had already heard it a hundred times.

Anyway, it was a nice weekend.  Sunday was much more restful, which I can’t complain about either.

We’re off to Detroit on Thursday.  We have a whirlwind visit planned, with stops at my Mom’s and younger sister’s (LRN8) house, my Dad’s house, and my slightly older sister’s (LRN16) house (twice!).  We’re really looking forward to getting together with everybody and maybe doing a few fun things too.  We’ll be gone slightly longer than a week.  Expect posting to be at least as sporadic as it’s been while I’m at home.

Everything else and everyone else is fine.  LRN1’s letter this week was a good one, LRN2’s doing very well at school and seems happy, LRN3’s been talking to LRN4 pretty often this week and is doing well, and LRN5 seems to be happy and healthy as well.  LRN12’s doing great too.  So the kids are alright.

I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news: thin mint melee!

See you tomorrow.

Bucket man

Friday, May 13th, 2011

Here’s an actor begging for money.  Note the money bucket to his left.  Fortunately, this was before the show started.  Details below.  Great Art courtesy of my good old Minolta Dimage X, which finally got new batteries on the very afternoon of the play.

That old camera is great.  The quality of the pictures is, umm, questionable and it’s only a 2 megapixel camera.  But it slips in a shirt pocket and is great for taking pictures on the run.  Of course my iPhone also has a 2 megapixel camera, but it has no flash.  So there’s that.

Wow.  Ten days since my last post.  I don’t know if that’s a new record, but it’s way too close for comfort.  Must . . . blog . . . regularly.

Lots going on.  As mentioned above, LRN4 and I went with some friends to see Romeo and Juliet at CSU Stanislaus.  It was actually pretty well done! Fortunately, it was way better than the opera version from a few weeks ago.  It was their annual free Shakespeare under the stars night, so the price was right.  Although this year’s begging level was embarrassing.  I don’t mind being asked to give, but the constant haranguing was pathetic.  By the time it was over, I was pretty much expecting “Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art though, Romeo?  Deny thy father and give a generous tax-deductible donation in the buckets going around the audience right now!”

Anyway.  We had a nice time.  It was a beautiful, warm day that turned into a beautiful, cool night.  We had jackets and blankets.  Our friends had a blanket to share, but hadn’t thought to bring jackets, so they were a bit chilly.  Still, a good time was had by all.  We’ll probably be there again next year.  By the way, it turns out that Romeo and Juliet isn’t a comedy.

Let’s see, what else is going on?  LRN12 has been here since Wednesday morning.  We’re having a nice time.  She goes back home tonight.

I sat in for my boss again Wednesday through today.  It was a bit busier than last time – more meetings and a few issues to take care of, but I enjoyed it.  I hope he enjoyed his vacation, which was apparently up in the mountains where there’s no cell phone coverage.  Sounds like the perfect vacation destination.

Speaking of which, LRN4 and I are planning to go to the Sunol Regional Wilderness tomorrow to do a bit of exploring and maybe some hiking around.  We have a bit of free weekend time these days and we’re not camping anymore, so we thought we would spend some time in some of the beautiful parks around here.  I’m really looking forward to it.

Nothing much else new comes to mind, so I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking toilet news: trapped deer!

See you on Monday.

New companion

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

Here’s LRN1’s new companion.  See circumstances and description below.  That’s LRN1 there on the right.  Part of my famous Guatemala series.

No posts for a week.  Such a long time!  Fortunately, nothing has happened.

Well, that’s not entirely true.  LRN4 and I had a bit of entertainment this weekend.  It started Friday night, as these things often do.  We went to Modesto to see Madame Butterfly.  Turns out it wasn’t a comedy.  I think it was the best thing I’ve seen done by the Townsend Opera Company, though.  Not that that’s necessarily saying much – they have put on a few stinkers over the years (we saw Romeo and Juliet there in January of this year – everything was good except the actors/singers who portrayed Romeo and Juliet, which seems like the one thing they should have gotten right.  Just saying.)  Not the best attendance, and the prices were quite reasonable.  So that’s a bit of a shame.  But we had a very nice time and enjoyed it quite a bit.

On Saturday night, we went to Danville to see our non-loyal-reader friend Clifford’s band perform.  They were excellent!  They played in a Lutheran church there, which was a unique experience for us, but how nice of them to provide facilities for things like this!

Anyway.  Nothing much else to report.  LRN1 wrote on Saturday, taking us a bit by surprise, since his p-day has been Monday, like most missionaries.  However, he’s been transferred back into the office.  And the office denizens have their p-day on Saturday.  I guess he’s just too good at doing the finances for his own good.  I hope he enjoys his second tour there.  He reports that he has a really great companion, which is an excellent start!  Have a great time in the office, LRN1!  As if you were reading this!

Got the Suburban detailed today.  When they replaced the vandalized window, they vacuumed, but there were still millions of tiny glass shards everywhere.  So the insurance company told me to get it detailed at their expense.  It cost more than three times what they initially told me to spend, so we’ll see how much they end up paying.  I just sent them the receipt and told them to pay whatever they feel good about.  In any case, the car looks great!  I want to get it done to all my cars every year!  Or maybe every month!  Sadly, that would be a bit unaffordable, so maybe I should just hope for one car a year.  Next year: the Honda.  The ‘Burb goes into the shop here in Lardville at the beginning of next week to have its mirror switch replaced, thereby finishing the repairs from the Vandalism Incident.  Weep with me, Loyal Readers.

Anyway again.  It’s 9:00 and I need to start getting up earlier.  Therefore, I need to start going to bed earlier.  Therefore, I need to end this and go to bed.  I’ll leave my Loyal Readers with this shocking food violence news:  grape assault!

See you tomorrow.