Don't you just love when that category comes up on Jeopardy? It just makes me feel excited like I have a chance. You know, don't you tally up the possibilities at the beginning of the show when Alex Trebek reads off all the category names? "British Literature"(check!) "Chemistry" (mmm...maybe) "Historical Figures" (I'm out) "U.S. Presidents" (shit!) "Crossword Clues 'L' " (check!) and the final category "Hodgepodge" (wooo hooo...millions of possibilities). No? You don't do that? Hmmm, embarrassed once again, am I. Whatever, well I just love it! And I love the word Hodgepodge. It's a good word. Say it -- Hodgepodge. It just sounds like fun, doesn't it? I like it almost as much as I like "Potent Potables" but that's probably an entirely seperate blog.
Anyway a few random updates:
First, I decided to save you from my whiny conclusions that I came up with while thinking about Kurt Vonnegut. I realize this makes me look like a lazy douche, telling you that I came up with some "deep thoughts", promising them for later, and then sweeping it under the rug only to talk briefly about grammar tees, but seriously, it just got me feeling kinda down -- so I veto'd the whole post. It looked alot like a very wordy version of "Hi self, don't be so hard on yourself. You are nice, self. You work hard, self. Enjoy your life. You have many things to be grateful for." And then it got list-y. It had a lot more melody from the world's smallest violin though, and I really do hate it when I get caught up in those feeling sorry for myself moments. It's boring.
Second, Garrett and I went on this crazy, amazing hike up in the Oroville area to Feather Falls. Sweet baby Jesus, that place was beautiful! Now, I'm not really a hiker, but I really wish I was. I so desperately want to be one of those people who goes out and enjoys nature and talks nonchalantly about how easy it is climb rocks, and eat worms, drink water from a rubber bladder (ick!), but alas I'm just really not. It's not that I don't like nature (I love it actually, although my sinuses may tell you a different story) I think it's that my choice of nature-to-love just usually tends to be that of beautiful beaches where I can relax (and perhaps consume a frosty beverage), snow covered mountains that I can see from the window of a quaint cabin while sitting fireside (of course while consuming minty-hot grasshoppers), or kicking back camping in the gorgeous redwoods of Northern California (roasting marshmallows and again consuming a frosty beverage). Basically I tend to enjoy the lazier aspects of the commune with nature. I like to observe nature, not necessarily run right out and get all covered in it!
Now that being said, I am also somewhat of a challenge seeker. My stubbornness definitely lends itself to seeking out things that I don't think I will be able to do in really any arena. I do this solely because I enjoy proving that little voice in my head wrong, and because even at the ripe age of 28 I'm still a fan of sticking my tongue out smugly. Even if only metaphorically. Hence, the Feather Falls adventure.
So Garrett has been wanting to get outside more, and we have both been looking for fun ways to get a little bit more exercise, so when I ran across this article in the Sac Bee, I thought this would be a perfect way to get outside, get a little exercise, and also it would be a great challenge since I'm not really "outdoorsy". I am coincidentally also not the world's most experienced hiker, so traversing about 9 miles of dirt on any given afternoon is just a little out of my comfort zone. BUT -- at the top of this cozy little hike appeared to be some pretty beautiful waterfalls -- or so the Sac Bee promised, so we went! And despite the fact that the Bee had a penchant for leaving out integral parts of the directions, we found it, and hiked up to the top, and WOW...it was totally worth it! So pretty! The waterfalls, of course, definitely not me when I got to the top. Whoa! Unless of course your version of pretty involves sweaty matted hair, and no makeup -- and you know what, I've seen some of those Vogue pictorals, so maybe on this day Andre Leon Talley would have thought I was pretty, but that's not the point. The point is, the view at the top was spectacular! And it was even spectacular going up and back. I took lots of pretty pictures, and I've been wanting to share, but my version of iPhoto has been behaving a little more dramatically than usual as of late, and I just haven't had the time to feed it some cookies, and rub its belly, and find out what the problem is. But let me tell you...when I do...Touche Vogue!
Thirdly, I'm going on a baby-vacay this weekend and I can't FREAKIN' wait! The fact that I have been juggling multiple projects at work, along with applying for a new position, along with trying to do my regular work, along with trying to, I don't know, HAVE A LIFE -- has caused me to feel a bit overextended. So I am delighted that Monday is Garrett's birthday, and we are taking a long weekend and heading up to the north coast. It is a trip with multiple agendas, but first and foremost we are just getting the heck outta dodge and celebrating! The second agenda is a bit of a sightseeing, nostalgic, somewhat emotional family history tour that I'm really excited to be sharing with Garrett. Alot of my dad's side of the family hails from (and still resides) up in Humboldt County, and last year, the whole gang took a trip up there for a little reunion or sorts. We stayed in Eureka, and enjoyed the town and saw the houses our family members lived in. We dined down by Woodley Island and enjoyed incredible seafood on Humboldt Bay. We hung out in Arcata, saw the Humboldt State campus, and just kind of played tourist a bit. We then revisited the adorable town of Samoa, where my Grandmother grew up, and learned a bit about its history, and her life while living there. Samoa is an incredibly tiny town that was basically established by the Hammond Lumber Company, and just about everyone living there at the time had something to do with it. Such a different time! We got to check out the Mansion (yes, there is only one), the Women's Club, the adorable tiny houses where she lived and where my dad's family lived for a brief time before migrating down to the bay area where most of us kids grew up, and of course, knowing my family, we hit up the Samoa Cookhouse. In the end we headed out to the dunes, to really complete the trip, and that experience was by far the best part. We had gathered as a family to finally lay my grandmother and my father to rest. We scattered their ashes together in a place that was really meaningful to both of them, and now even more meaningful to all of us. It was a really emotional experience, and ever since I have really wanted to take Garrett there and share that part of my life and history with him.
Oh, don't seem so depressed! The family and I also did a lot of other super fun things in the neighboring area of Trinidad (where Garrett and I are actually going to be staying), Patrick's Point, and hit up some breweries and of course another old stomping ground that I also plan to show Garrett. My whole family used to take an annual camping trip up to Richardson's Grove State Park where we would have some crazy good times that I know Garrett is probably tired of hearing about, so I am finally going to get to show him the gigantic redwoods of my childhood, the Old Eel River, and of course dispel the myth of "Elmer!" I truly can't wait, it is going to be such a great trip! And I promise, I will bring home enough milk and cookies to talk some sense into my iPhoto so I can share the good times.