30 September 2005

Day 1 of Staging

We arrived in Chicago with no problems. Larry even got up and walked up and down the aisle on the plane. There was crazy rush hour traffic when we arrived, so it took nearly 2 hours to get to the hotel, but some deep-dish Chicago pizza was waiting.

We've checked in and begun our paperwork. In a few minutes we're meeting with half the group (58 people) in one of our hotel's meeting rooms. Most people we've met seem really nice; a lot of Californians.

After our free breakfast this morning we went in the jacuzzi. That felt great on my legs, tired from a long travel day yesterday. Trying to appreciate all the amenities that will soon be luxurious or maybe even impossibilities.

More soon.


aqui en chicago

Supposed to be in training. Filling out forms and what not. just realized we needed some different loan forms, so we snuck away.
Sneaky, sneaky, sneaky.
Everything is going great in Chi town so far.
Mas despues.

28 September 2005


I'd take a picture, but a picture doesn't do it any justice. Standing in the kitchen, booting the scale, balancing ourselves on the balls of our feet so we can read the red, digital numbers.

I've got one bag at 46 lbs. Karen's got one at 46 lbs as well.

We're each allowed one more at 50 lbs, but our second bags are small duffels and only weigh 20-25 lbs.

Off to Chicago tomorrow. All the goodbyes almost behind us, though they get no easier--no matter what we say. I've been waiting years to say this:


If I can't get to the blog again for a while, remember 16 October 2005. That's the day you can go to Perigee-art.com and read the first installment of my quarterly on my PC experience.
Save the date!

27 September 2005

tres dias mas

I said last night at dinner that it seems as though we're on vacation here in SD. It seems like we'll be returning to our regular lives and routines once we leave.
That, however, is not the case. No more regular life for a while.
Three days.

23 September 2005

blood in disneyland

First full day down in SD.  We went to Disneyland yesterday. I had so much fun there, but I imagine I'm the only one to ever draw blood on the Tarzan Treehouse (formerly the Swiss Family Robinson treehouse) in the history of Disneyland. That was a fun one to explain to first aid.
Because we went on a Thursday, ther were hardly any lines. We just walked into Space Mountain (twice), Indiana Jones (twice), and only had to wait 20 minutes for Splash Mountain. Man, I had a fun time.
Today we're going to try to organize all of our crap while we have a free day.  We don't want to take away from hanging out time in order to get packed and stuff, so we are going to do it today while everyone else has lives to live.

21 September 2005

not relevant, but noteworthy

So we're moving. Dust and boxes and cashish. But that doesn't matter.  Check this out.

Karen's done with the golf course. No more putting up with rich people bs. No more grilling up some cheese sandwiches. No more manufacturing tuna salad--which, I might add, she never made for me. It's over. Done.

But before the end, she received a gift from her work. She won it at a company picnic she never went to. Have I ever mentioned how much she hated that job?

Anyway, what she won was a $50 gift certificate to Sticks, a restaurant at Spanish Bay in Pebble Beach--the same inn we stayed a for our honeymoon. We made a reservation a few weeks ago for tonight, and tonight we went made our grand appearance.

So we sit down at this table in the corner. There's windows on all sides. As we eat--other than watching the Giants trounce the Nationals (this ritzy place had a sports bar theme--just substitute golf and other bs old people sports for real sports)--we can watch the Pacific smash into the Monterey Bay coastline. This scene was the same view we had nine months ago when we woke up, rose petals plastered all over our bodies--in our ginormous suite. I don't like many rich people, or the lives that they lead, but this place was okay with me for one night.

Our waiter comes over, and we hand him our gift certificate. He asks us if we know what the certificate entails. Of course we say no.  So he tells us we get two appetizers, two salads, two entrees, and two desserts. All drinks, except alcohol, are covered too.

Here's the dinner breakdown:

Karen orders mozzarella sticks ; I order calamari. $20 total

I order salad. $7 total

Karen orders a bacon hamburger; I order new york steak. $37 total

Karen orders a sweet ass chocolate chip cookie thing; I order cheesecake. $16 total

I also ordered a glass of Morgan 12 clone Pinot--the very same we celebrated my first place, prize-winning short story with. $9 total

Bill: $9 total (+ the fat tip we left)

Freaking, freaking, freaking sweet.

It was a pretty amazing experience to have as the one last big one we'll have of this area. I'm thankful for it.

Tomorrow, we're out of Monterey for a coupla years.

17 September 2005

sonic boom for my brother

In Berkeley. We're in that part of the calendar that sees us in SF for the final time.  Last night, we were in Daly City with all of our friends.  We bowled.
My brother and my nephew made it out early in the day, so we hung out with them and our friend Ken most of the day. Video games and comida mexicana. Then we went to the bowling alley around 9 pm. Everyone, except us, was a little late--Greg was late because he was recording the song he wrote and played for the first dance at our wedding in January, so we can have it on our iPod. (It's a good song; ask us to listen to it on the plane.) Aw we were early, we ordered some bowling food.  My brother and I played Street Fighter II Turbo in the arcade. I kicked his ass; no one mess with my Guile.
Yep. It was bad-ass.
We haven't played video games together since we were 15.
Bowling, Ken got over 200. The rest of us, we were fighting to get over 100. Out of two games, I accomplished that once. We yelled and drank and threw balls around until midnight. So fun.
Off to Golden Gate Park for a Peace Corps festival. I think we're meeting a chick from UA 29 there today. Greg and my brother and nephew are coming too. Should be fun. Then Thai food tonight. Albatross afterwards--a bar where you can check out board games.
More later!

14 September 2005

Reality Check

It's starting to set in.

15 days!
2 weeks from tomorrow we'll be on a plane to Chicago.

I finished my last shift at Quail today...thank goodness. That's one thing I won't miss about our life here. Although driving into Carmel Valley in the morning, clear sunshine in stark contrast to Monterey's fog, can be breathtaking.

We bought an iPod (yay!) and are busy getting our music onto it. The "shuffle" mode is very interesting...as Larry's music and mine can be pretty humorous together. Not unlike us at times. I just had Nirvana, followed by Weezer, then Garth Brooks, Greg Milholland, Rod Stewart, and now Lauryn Hill (phew).

We'll be out of our apartment in one week. Wow. But we're doing good, packing a bit each day...and I think it will all fit in my car. Let's hope, cause there's really no other choice. Larry donated his backpack to "We've got your back" that gives school supplies to Katrina victims. We've given more than half our clothes to Goodwill so far. Most of our furniture will sell for $5 - $10, and the rest of it will get put on the street with a "FREE" sign.

I feel like my mode is on fast forward. Soon we'll have said all our goodbyes and will be looking back from the other side of the bowling ball.

The iPod just went from Blink-182 (from Poway, like me) to Ben Harper (from Claremont, where I went to college). It's magically charting my forward progress. Luckily, Larry's music tastes and mine intersect somewhere in musicland around Dave Matthews and Ricardo Arjona. For now we are content with the shuffle mode, but I'm certain we will be longing to hit "Pause" soon enough.

13 September 2005


Not only do you get some hot little arse shots of my cousin and I, you get to see one piece of the washers board. I'm in the throwing position. My cousin is waiting to the side, about to be beaten. Pure ownage captured on film.

Greg was my teammate and, despite him, we pulled into the winner's circle in a best of three series.

For the game, there are two boxes--I'm standing on one in this picture--connected by a length of chain. In each box are cut three four-inch (I think) diameter holes. Into these holes you--and your opponent at the other side-- toss three three-inch diameter (I think) washers. First to 21 without going over (holes are worth one, three, and five points in the order of how far away they are from you) wins. Each person has a partner standing at the other box ready to do the same thing. Last scoring team from the previous round throws first. The other team has a chance to cover your washer and steal your points. If building the boxes sucks, you can always dig holes in the ground [probably what I'll do in Ukraine when I have washers club after school--don't doubt me!].

I win sometimes; I'm really good at games that go to 21.

Really good.

11 September 2005

grey days

The grey ghost is gone.


I've hit the place in my life where I've sold my first car.

I kept the memories though; I pulled them out of the glove box at the last second.

Barstow. Vegas. St Paul. Omaha. Fortuna. Missoula. Reno. Riverside. Los Angeles. Rohnert Park. Life.

le sigh

08 September 2005

laundry list

Right now, I've been assigned the task of cleaning the house. Ridding it of clutter. Piling up the stuff to sell; readying the pile to pack.

Right now, I'm ripping CDs for the (one day to be purcahsed) iPod.

Karen and I spent the last week (Wed-Wed) travelling up and back to my family's places in Humboldt. It was a good time where I was able to spend quality time with everyone. It was normal. None of that we-know-this-is-the-end-and-we're-going-to-act-like-it stuff. It's nice to have the goodbye be more of a hanging out. My family threw a bye-bye/b-day party for us on Labor Day. It was nice to see everyone together. Having fun. Drinking beer. Playing washers.

The final final adios was okay. I didn't tear up til we were 20 miles south. Those first 30 miles were tough; I'd never wanted to turn a car north so badly.

Stayed at Steve's in Rohnert Park for the night. Hung out, had some good food, good spa.

Back to Monterey yesterday and work. Only a few more sessions of that, most of them small on the planning side. Finally got a paycheck for that job, so I'm in a better mood. Should be getting another check soon.

Saturday is my Bday; next Saturday is our party in the Bay.

Perigee piece is due Saturday.

Thirteen days til we're out of Monterey for good.

Lots and lots to do.

01 September 2005


Money ain't nothin' but paper, but sometimes it can do good.
Please, do good.