October 22nd, 2012

Dead Dog Cat

(no subject)

Wow. Whirlwind weekend...

Friday we drove into LA, and met up with thechaim42 and Suzanne, who loaded us into their Prius and we headed north on US 101 to the Bay Area. On the way we had a short stop for food in Solvang. Dinner was in San Jose at a pizzeria called Patxi, IIRC, which served the closest thing to Chicago-style pizza I've ever had outside the Windy City; the only issue there was that they offered us a bottle of honey to put on the pizza...no, I don't think so... It turns out that our friend sekl lived 1.8 miles from the restaurant, and she and her family came out to say hello; lovely! At the end of our perambulations, we stopped in a hotel in Berkeley, for access to one thing or another, and access to BART.

Saturday, we walked into the Berkeley area, and the refrain of "it's only 1.8 miles away" became the refrain of the weekend. We browsed cheese shops, bookstores, game stores, and other various places.

Then, in the latter part of the day, we took BART into SF, rode the cable cars (meeting folks from Holland and Brazil while doing so), and had a meal in Ghiradelli Square. We wandered a bit more, taking photos here and there, and then later took a cab to a Chinese place that was highly rated on Yelp, and had a very good meal. Back on BART; when we got off at the North Berkeley station, we could hear fire engines in the distance. It turned out that a church was burning down four blocks from our hotel, and so we tagged along when forestcats marched off to sightsee it. Soon, we smelled of smoke. She got some stunning photos of it all.

Sunday morning we checked out of the hotel, and then went past San Quentin prison to Muir Woods, a National Monument of giant redwoods. Beautiful place, but the last time I was there was for a wedding, and it was raining; this time, there were built-up walkways, and although a sprinkle did occur, it wasn't full-blown. The place was packed with folks; even so, a skunk made an appearance. Cute fellow.

Then, back into SF by car, trying to find parking to get lunch. Finally, a few blocks away from another Patxi, we had some more pizza, this time of another mix of ingredients. Very nice.

We headed home along I-5, stopping for a late dinner at Harris Ranch, and got to our friends' home at about 0130. We transferred our luggage into my car, and then homewards we blew. The dogs and cats were happy to see us, and even Booboo gave a quick bray. I was down and sleeping in about half and hour; some unpacking took place, but I don't expect to finish until tonight. A full day's work awaits me...
Dead Dog Cat

(no subject)

Over the last three days, I finished three books that I enjoyed.

First, I was lent a book by strynn, which is called The Cadet: The Adventures of a New World Pioneer in the 17th Century: A True Story by Walt C. Snedeker, which fictionalizes the history of a Dutch emigrant into the colony of New Amsterdam, and his experiences there. It's not a bad read at all, though long. I'd guess it shows what research and genealogical studies can do for you.

Second was Bangkok 8 by John Burdett, a detective novel that I found fascinating. A Marine guard from the US Embassy is killed in a grotesque fashion, and the protagonist's partner is killed when he tries to save the victim, setting into motion an investigation by a Thai detective with an FBI agent; culture clash! Very interesting; I'll be reading more from this series.

Third was the latest book by Terry Pratchett, Dodger. It's not a Discworld novel, instead it shows life in a certain class in London in Dickens' era. Good read.