Monday, June 27, 2005

Ack it's been awhile. Strange that I don't update as much now that I have so much free time, I guess it's because there isn't as much to say?

Hmmmm... Well, I've been doing a lot of scrapbooking w/ Grammy, which is an effective way of recovering and sorting memories... So I've been spending more time down in Hood River -- had lunch at Twin Peaks once with Mer & Mum & Grammy &Aunt Margaret, another time just with Grams and Mum. Yum, milkshakes!

Also been doing some more of my favorite activity back home -- hiking. Mum & I went up to Lost Lake the weekend before last, and ended up hiking around the lake. Just going to the dock seemed awfully short after our Surveyor's Ridge excursion. So for once we didn't eat till nearly the end of the hike. It was good hiking weather -- cool but only a bit of sun unfortunately. We saw an adorable cabin up on the side of the lake, and I thought it would be great fun to rent a little cabin or go camping w/ Andrew. Mom tried to explain the difference between hemlocks and cedars -- I realized I don't really know my tree/ bird/ plant identifications very well. Afterwards, we went to Wahtum Lake (excuse to eat dessert out of doors). I took the Wahtum Express trail up and down, a.k.a. 250 steps that bring you into or out of the deep valley that is the lake bed.

One evening after Mer got home from work, we decided to bring Bosun up to Laurance Lake for an excursion. He has to be lifted into and out of the trunk of the jeep, because he's so old and, well, a basset hound. I really wanted to go swimming even though it was chilly... so I finally got up the guts to take like two strokes out, and then come back to shore =) In the tradition of our family's obsession with eating (esp. when out of doors), me and Mer then ate Luna bars (Bosun likes Lemon Zest).

This past weekend was pretty packed, as Mer and I were Domino sitting for our high school teacher, Mrs. J. Domino is a pitbull/ cattle dog mix, so he's a TAD crazy. But he's gotten better with age, and he's so intelligent that you can practically train him to respond to you in the space of an extended weekend. Tried to teach him "down" and the difference between licking and biting! Friday night me and Mer escaped & watched Something's Gotta Give, and didn't get home till 1 am (we didn't check the length of the movie before starting it). Sat. was lots of fun -- I had convinced Mer to see Land of the Dead with me, so we headed into Hood River for a matinee. The guy who let us in told us he frankly thought neither of us was old enough to get in to an R rated movie. I was thinking... sure I look young, but not THAT young!

The movie was great -- sometimes heavy handed w/ the politics (like the line "we don't negotiate with terrorists" and using the word "jihad" as if it were everyday street slang), but lots of good zombie scenes and definitely scary. Mer also appreciated that it was more than just a horror movie. And although I didn't TOTALLY buy the "let's make the zombies more human than the humans" idea, I was starting to sympathize a tad bit with the head zombie who got mad when people killed his fellow zombies just for the hell of it. But come on, if the zombies were relaly "just looking for a place to go," they needn't invade the city and eat tons of people. That's just uncalled for. Can't wait for the unrated version though, you could tell the scenes that were being held back...

I hadn't exactly gotten an appetite while watching the movie, but we still went for dinner at the Crazy Pepper. Yums.

In the evening we continued the horror trend w/ Young Frankenstein (Mom actually stayed awake!!)

Sunday was chilly, but we hiked anyways after a quick visit with Uncle Scott and Ardyth. Went up to Wahtum Lake again, to Anthill Trail. Great views to the east and of the lake... lots of uphill at first (I was feeling rather out of shape). Then we joined up with an old road that took us back to the top of the lake. Interesting, we finally know where that closed off road goes! Strange sustained whistling bird call that we couldn't place, seemed to follow us... It started raining, so we tailgated in the jeep for our picnic. Because we can't go on a hike without eating, obviously!

In the evening we watched The Life Aquatic, which I liked more and more as it went on. Mer also enjoyed it... we loved that all the creatures seemed to be machines, so random!

Today was pretty horrible weather... I had some stuff to do, which included stressing about where to get these certain eyeglass frames that I want. I keep getting these loan consolidation forms even though I've consolidated, supposedly, with the company that's sending them. So I finally called up, and had to wait 5 minutes on hold for the guy to flirt with me. I was asking what my status was, and he said "you're fine -- I bet you hear that from all the guys." And then he called me sweetie or something. I told Mer about that one, and we had a good laugh.

This evening we took another short hike/ walk up at the irrigation trail by Settler's Pond. We saw two deer by the water (Mer saw one more that we missed on the trail). Unfortunately we didn't catch a glimpse of a bear, though we did see its droppings... Heard another bird call we couldn't place, a strange looping repeated trill.

Hmm I guess that's the highlights, I haven't been very good at keeping track of everything!

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

OK so it's definitely time for a I'm-home-in-Oregon update!

I had a completely uneventful plane ride -- which is not the norm -- so uneventful, in fact, that all I remember is the really nasty food they served us. I sat by this older, talkative man on the short ride from Seattle to Portland -- he must have been in his 80's, and very big on traveling... Noteworthy: our stewardess had been on the Millionaire show, and we were allowed free beer or wine. Cool, except I opted out of that, considering the upcoming tooth surgery.

Being home was cool -- I had a couple of days of leisure time with Mum & Tim. Took Bosun on a couple of walks, which isn't as easy as it sounds. He walks at an astoundingly slow pace, and I like to walk briskly, so we don't get along.

Anyway, the big event was Thurs. morning -- I tried to stay awake as long as possible after the sedative, but... it did its job. Yuck. The upper wisdom teeth had at least partially come in, but the bottoms required some digging apparently. They stitched me up, and I was eating mush for a week. Lots of ice cream & applesauce. I'm so tired of soup, especially soup that's been shredded up in a blender. Yuck. Anyway, nearly two weeks later and I'm pretty much painfree -- just some shifting in the lower teeth I think, and I still have to irrigate the places where teeth used to be. Eww.

Anyway, to distract myself I recently started scrapbooking with Grammy. She had hopes that all four of her daughters would make scrapbooks, but that hasn't panned out. So now I'm learning to use the special oval stencils & picture rounders -- fun times. I haven't actually pasted anything down yet... I still need to print more pictures, too.

Last Weds we drove to Corvallis to get Merrie. Packed her room into the jeep, experienced subpar leftovers for dinner at the co op, and then filled up on yummy chocolate hazelnut gelato. YUM.

I've been rather lax about writing W2K articles... averaging about two a week. Tim has me putting some stuff on ebay for him. And I will be doing some odd jobs for neighbors & friends. Not terribly worried about money though, as I'm sure I'll stay underbudget at Stanford. The only thing I can see myself realistically overspending on is food... ahh Ben & Jerry's! And I'm planning to do the whole organic/ free range chicken/ health nut thing. Better late than never!

A top concern right now is decorating my studio for next year. I went shopping via JcPenney's catalog, and ended up with a super girly floral & lace comforter. And my bathroom is going to be all pink/ peach/ red. I figured I may as well do what I want now, since I can't imagine Andrew, or any guy for that matter (straight guy, I should say) wanting to live around lace, flowers, and pink. Hmmm. I figured I'd do the cheapskate thing, so I went to the senior center rummage sale over the weekend and got some cool miss matched silverware. A lot of it is just tarnished because it's real silver... and I kinda like the shabby chic sort of look. Something about vintage patterns...

Anyway, on Saturday we also went to a yard sale. The woman running it revealed, in chatting to us, that she was from Holyoke, MA. And that she then moved to the Bay area, and is now living in Hood River. Strange coincidences. And her daughter went to another all women's college. Do-do-do-do, do-do-do-do DO (Twilight Zone). Best part: I got a little hand held vacuum for $2.

Hmmm... what else. I've been cooking more lately... made mango fried rice, pad thai, meat loaf, spaghetti, brownies, and now tonight, by popular demand, more pad thai. And then probably some chocolate chip cookies. (Mmm, dough).

Sunday was a cool but sunny day, so we went hiking. We went up Surveyor's Ridge and down Oak Grove trail... very pretty. Lots of views of meadows, forest, and, of course, the mountain. Kinda weird trying to irrigate my gum holes after eating, while on the trail. I packed warm salt water in a thermos, and brought my syringe. And of course some biker came by while I was trying to do what the oral surgeon ordered. Errr... how long does it take for my mouth to fill in the gaps with gum tissue? Egads. Anyway, my thighs are still sore -- all that downhill hiking... I try to put more of the burden on my muscles instead of the poor knees, and then... things hurt.

Last night Mer & I met up with her friends at taco night. We're kinda over the whole taco thing, so we just had root beer. Topic of conversation: Jumping off docks, Be Bop Cowboy (or something), and drinking. Hmmm.

In exciting news in my life: George Romero is coming out with a new zombie movie -- opens June 24th. I hope it's good. It's supposed to be, like all his other zombie movies, more than just horror... He says it'll be incorporating class conflict (the upper class human survivors that live in skyscrapers, vs. the working class survivors who do all the dirty work and actually deal with the zombies), and have a pretty pertinent and timely reference to the situation in Iraq. Kinda eerily similar (I guess they don't call them horror movies for nothing).