Friday, August 29, 2008

24 Hours

I took a 24-hour trip the other day. Only myself and one other person knew about my destination. I did not know what to expect upon arrival, as one should always travel without expectations.

I won't call it a one-night stand because it wasn't. But I recall hearing someone on the radio say that nothing good happens after 10:30 at night. There was some good and some surprises.

We were on foot the entire time. I like to be able to be in a place where you can walk to your destination. My partner was hungry, having only eaten a bowl of cereal all day since getting up at 3am for work. We headed to the beach to find some nourishment of the edible kind and settled on a falafel place. Ordering our schwarmas and drinks, we sat a table to wait for the food to come. I don't eat a lot of Middle Eastern food, but do appreciate how delicious it is, and this hit the spot.

We continued on, strolling along the sidewalk above the sand. There really wasn't much to do but walk, so it was suggested we go to the cinema to see a film. By the time we arrived at the theatre it was 8:00 and all of the shows were already in progress with the next showing starting at about 10:00. That's not too late. After all, I'm on vacation and tomorrow is his day off. Where to wait for 2 hours. A cafe!

There's a great place with a really relaxed atmosphere, but on the way I was distracted by another sign. Oh, I've never eaten there before but always wanted to. It always sounded so delectable. We ordered hot chocolates, mine bittersweet, his milk with whipped creme. It was like drinking chocolate soup. Yummy!

Now it was time for the show: Tropic Thunder. Despite all the rally cries against it in order to preserve our pc behaviour, I still enjoyed it. Sure, it had its distasteful moments, yet it was intended to throw our haughty consciences in our face. Besides, who doesn't like watching Tom Cruise shake his thing to Low Rida!

The movie ended. We walked back to the motel. Then it was morning. Checkout time. We still had five more hours. Too late for breakfast so lunch was Indian buffet. [insert Indian word for delicious here].

More walking. Downtown. Cafe. Iced Tea. Newspaper. Talking. Pigeons making out (seriously). Walking. Another cafe. More newspapers. Less talking. A white mocha and a chai latte. Waiting. Then I was gone.

Monday, August 25, 2008

A secret weekend

I entertained a secret visitor this past weekend. I had been out of contact with this person for awhile and wasn't sure if I should re-connect or not. The last time I had spoken with them I didn't really end the conversation in a positive manner. However, curiosity outweighed propriety and so the invitation was extended. Surprisingly enough it was accepted. Hence the weekend would come to fruition after all.

Initially there was nowhere to put this person as I wasn't ready to share the news with my mother. All I could hope for was a pet sitting job where I needed to stay at the house, thus avoiding any parental issues. The person was supposed to be arriving on Saturday afternoon. On Tuesday I received a call from a new client requesting my services for the weekend. Such perfect timing!

The house was perfect. It was a really cute small house in a very nice neighborhood. The two weiner dogs were very sweet and adorable. If I were to have a house of my own, that is what I would like it to look like.

Saturday, I picked up my special guest just after 1:00pm. I had it all planned out. Walk around Downtown San Luis Obispo to find a place for lunch. We ended up eating at Mo's Smokehouse BBQ. Yummy! Two pulled pork sandwiches, homemade potato chips and two local draughts of Firestone Ale. Delicious. The lunchtime conversation was amiable and very frank at points. Bring it on!

We continued walking before heading back on the road to hit Avila Beaches to check it out. We went out to Port San Luis pier to walk out on it and back before continuing south to Pismo Beach. I got back on Highway 1o1 because I love the drive up out of Avila because just as you come up the hill you have the first view of the Pacific Ocean after having driven inland for quite a long time. We took the first exit for Shell Beach to look at the views from the cliffs.

I drove along the frontage road into Pismo Beach to cruise downtown. I wasn't going to stop because I didn't want to pay for parking. Plus I wanted to continue down to Grover Beach to actually stick our feet in the sand and walk down to the Pismo pier. That was what I really wanted to do. It was a lovely day with the sun out and clear sunny skies. We came back to Grover and ended up having some Margaritas at Fin's Seafood Restaurant. It was great because there was live music and the sun was on its way down.

The plan for that night was to see the evening performance at the Great American Melodrama: "Showdown at the Slick Rock Ranch". Before the show we needed to head back to the house to rest a little and so I could take care of the dogs. They needed their dinner and a trip outside.

I love going to the Melodrama because it's such an intimate atmosphere with a small crowd and live acting. There always crowd involvement through sing-alongs and birthday and anniversary cheers. We got there just in time to pay for the tickets and order some grub before the house lights dimmed. Showtime! With two intermissions and then the final Vaudeville, the performance ended at about 11:00pm. My guest was very pleased by the evenings entertainment and vowed to return for another performance in the future. Now I would heartily welcome that.

That evening was filled with some TV viewing of the Olympics, sipping of a nice red wine I bought (and spilled!), with a bit of late night fun thrown in. I think bedtime was somewhere in the 2:30am range. Tomorrow (oh wait, that would be today!) would be the last day.

It started bright and early for me: much earlier than I really wanted. I think the dogs got me up so they could be let out. As a result I spent the rest of the day sleepy. After some morning coffee and my homemade banana bread we eventually headed out to breakfast at F. McLintock's in the Village of Arroyo Grande. I got the oatmeal and then my partner ordered eggs and bacon with another cup of coffee. How original. From breakfast we headed straight to church for the 11am service. The topic of the message was greed.

After church it was back to the house to do the final packing and resting before heading out again. I wouldn't return to the house since the owners were returning that afternoon. Now we headed back to the beach for some more strolling. This time I went down to the Oceano offramp. It wasn't as nice down there as there were lots of trucks and RVs heading back home. Not only that but it was windy. Now we were hungry for lunch and seafood was craved. We returned to Fin's for fish and chips with Corona beers.

I don't think I had ever had so much alcohol since my days in Denmark. Not that it was really all that much, but for me it was a lot, plus I was doing all the driving. Total for me since Friday afternoon: 1 pint of beer, 1 Margarita on the rocks, 3 glasses of red wine, and 1 Corona.

The final attraction before the visit ended was a drive out to the Gopher Glen apple farm. I love apples this time of year and will probably eat one a day until the apple season ends in November. See Canyon apples are the best I've ever had. I bought some Galas that are a nice sweet and crunch apple, and also bought some Elstars, which are more tart, as a gift for my mom. The actual last stop before departure was to Food 4 Less to buy a bottle of the wine we drank at the house: Peachy Canyon's Incredible Red.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The single-word answer challenge

The rules say you can only type one word.

1. Where is your cell phone? pocket
2. Your significant other? Da
3. Your hair? flipped
4. Your Skin? warm
5. Your mother? stagnant
6. Your favorite thing? driving
7. Your dream last night? odd
8. Your favorite drink? rootbeer
9. Your dream/goal? satisfaction
10. The room you're in? office
11. Your ex? Venezolano
12. Your fear? temptation
13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Cambodia
14. Where were you last night? guestroom
15. What you're not? mean
16. Muffins? chocolate
17. One of your wish list items? job
18. Where you grew up? California
19. The last thing you did? scanned
20. What are you wearing? pearls
21. Your TV? Olympics
22. Your pet(S)? dog
23. Your computer? outdated
24. Your life? progressing
25. Your mood? anticipation
26. Missing someone? naturally
27. Your car? Rav4
28. Something you're not wearing? watch
29. Favorite Store? grocery
30. Your summer? quiet
31. Like someone? madly
32. Your favorite color? blue
33. When is the last time you laughed? today
34. Last time you cried? recently
35. Who will/would re-post this? Can-Can

Tag! You're it! I now challenge you, the reader, to create your own list of single-word answers to the above questions. Comment with a link when you do!

Friday, August 08, 2008

All fired up!

How would you like to start your morning being called by some strange trucker who demeans you for parking within two feet of his tow hitch, insisting that anyone with a 2nd grade level of education would know not to park next to it.

Well, exuuuuuse me, sir, for not being aware of the international truckers rules of parking next to a truck etiquette and right of way. No, it's not because I am lacking a complete elementary education. It's because I do not drive trucks, and because there were no signs or flares or even a driver to wave me away from the tow hitch. I was parking in the spot that I park in regularly every day, the same lot where the EMPLOYEES who actually work here park every day.

I'm so fired up because I offered to move my vehicle at least 3 or 4 times and each time he said no, it wasn't necessary. Well when he got ticked because I wasn't listening to his tyrannical lecture and resorted to playground tauntings and threats of vehicle destruction, I was equally disturbed. Why should I listening to a rude trucker who only wanted to insult me?

When I ended the conversation, I immediately got up and walked out to move my car. It was just that easy. There was absolutely no reason for him to call me just to ridicule me. I hope he gets a flat tire in the desert!

Thursday, August 07, 2008

A 10th Anniversary

I started this day unaware that today is the 10th anniversary of my dad's death. I was informed of this by my mom in an email this afternoon. It's not that I don't think of my dad or that I don't miss him, because I do nearly every day. I just don't want it to keep me lagging behind because I'm focussing on the past.

He was an amazingly capable man despite his social inaptitude. Sometimes I think I've inherited his limited social skills and abrasive manners. He was highly intelligent and capable of doing so many different things from plumbing, electronics, construction, car mechanic, and more. I'm thankful I've picked on some of those good traits, such as being capable of doing a lot of handywork and figuring out mechanical type things.

This entry is dedicated to those family members who passed before and after him:

  • James Dennis Biddison - father - b.1946, d.August 7, 1998
  • Eleanore Mack - great aunt - d.1980's?
  • Kirk Buccholtz - cousin - d.May 1990
  • Paul Eugene Groszmann - grandfather - d.December 1990
  • Helen Adelaide Groszmann - grandmother - d.November 1999
  • Elizabeth "Betty" Kingdom - great aunt - d.2005
  • Robert "Bob" Biddison - grandfather - d. July 2005
  • Constance "Connie" Buccholtz - aunt - d. January 2007
  • Woleta "Lee" Biddison - grandmother - d. May 2007
  • Lori Kingdom - aunt (really a cousin) - d. December 2007
  • Judy Groszmann - aunt - d. June 2008

Three (Stuffed) Puppies Need Homes - Right Away!

Three life-sized stuffed puppies are being given away at 5 Minutes for Mom from their A Rocking Horse to Love store. They are brand-new and still in their packaging, but the customer who ordered them was from a large company who was going to be using them in some event that was canceled.

I'd love to adopt these adorable puppies because it would be a great way to promote my Home & Pet Care by Nikki business. I was just thinking of having a stuffed dog that could ride in my car. I could even do a giveaway as a promotion to get my name out there! Not only that, but I love doggies. I used to have a life-sized stuffed dog that I bought from my hard-earned allowance many years ago, but I have no idea when I got rid of it. Of course my mom would say that's the reason why one should never get rid of anything!
Not only that, but the Boston Terrier would make a sweet gift to my uncle who just lost his wife to cancer. They have a real Boston Terrier and this would be lovely gift as a reminder of her.

If you'd like a chance to win these adorable pooches, go to their site and write your own entry.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Too much stuff

I have too much stuff. I need to reduce the number of my possessions so I can be better prepared for intensive studies come September. I cannot continue to live surrounded by so much stuff that just gets moved from one place to the next or simply collects dust until that rare moment when it is picked up and looked at or used.

I hate getting rid of stuff because inevitably the mother hen feels inclined to pick it over and keep half the stuff to store in her "gift" room: the room where gifts are collected yet rarely given. It's always a fight if I refuse to let her take my things. She feels like I'm throwing money away by tossing things out (actually taken to the thrift store) because I've paid for them. Well in that case, nobody should throw anything out because it is therefore wasteful. That's the clutterers psychological rationalization for keeping so many things.

I don't want to rationalize my junk. It's not being used. I don't really need it. I've lived on much less and survived.