This past weekend Penelope and I drove up to the Bay Area to visit Merrilee and Keith. We attended a traditional wedding in Old Town Orange on Friday before we hit the road. The service was beautiful and the church (St. John's Lutheran) was lovely. We had to leave early in order to make it to Oakland at a semi-reasonable hour (2am).
Penelope and I woke early and went for a strenuous jog in the Oakland hills, man those are steep! After the jog, Keith and I surveyed the area in the back of the house where a stairway is to be built. We measured once and cut twice... oh wait did we get that bassackwards? Well anyway we planted stakes where we planned to drill holes for the load bearing members of the stairway. When we were done surveying it was time to pick up Merrilee who had just ridden 62 miles in training for the Death Ride. We prettied ourselves up and headed to the Pagan Re-Wedding of our caving friends Bill and Peri Franzt and Ethan and Courtney Frantz
I have never been to a Pagan Wedding or Re-Wedding and I didn't know what to expect, but the ceremony was really quite beautiful. There were about a hundred people in attendance and after drinking a variety of home made brews we all joined hands in a circle and started singing a short chant which I now forget the words to. The circle doubled back on its self and everybody kissed everybody on the cheek. The ceremony the involved the 7 couples who were remarrying drinking some wine and eating some bread and then spinning a wheel of life which we all also had the chance to spin.
The next day Penelope and I went for our hilly run again, then we all went to the Montclair Farmers Market where I scored some cheese and organic baby greens that had edible flowers mixed in. The edible flowers were really tasty and a bit spicy almost like horseradish. Merrilee and Keith picked up some fresh non-farmed salmon for dinner wich they later BBQ'd after soaking in a delicious Pernod marinade.
Penelope, Merrilee and Josh headed to Berkeley to visit the Sake Factory and buy Jim a father's day present and Keith and I headed to the lumber yard (Not Home Despot!) to pick up some tubular cement forms for the staircase. With the forms in tow we proceeded to the rental company and rented an auger with a 12" bit.
Neither Keith nor I had ever used an auger before, but we weren't too worried and as it turns out, using an auger is pretty straight forward. The only problem we ran in to was spilling a little bit of gas when we improperly laid the auger down on the ground, but no harm no foul. It took us a little over an hour to drill 6 holes and we even had a chance to take a break and have some water before we returned the auger.
After we were all done and the auger was returned I suggested to Josh, who is a photographer, that we head down to San Francisco to take some photos of the Golden Gate Bridge. We drove in to the city and made way to the Persidio where we parked near Fort Point and took some Bridge photos. I also photographed some sea gulls who were mugging it up for me.
We headed over to the Palace of Fine Arts where the Exploratorium is located and shot that famous landmark. Finally we stopped at Treasure Island to shoot the city from afar and while I shot a few pics, Josh sketched the San Francisco skyline.
When Josh and I pulled up to the house the coals were getting hot and the drinks were flowing. We ate, drank and were merry and in the morning it was hard to get up and leave, but we had to get back to LA. Penelope and I both had a great trip, albeit too short, and we look forward to the next time we make it out to the Bay.
This weekend our SAR team had a two part training scheduled. The first part was Helitac training in which we were to learn about how to deal with helicopters in the search. We got about half an hour in to it when our team leader received a call from the Volunteer Forces coordinator. There was a need for alpine trained rescuers on Mt. Baldy for a patient evac. Being that 90% of our team is trained for Alpine rescue we responded and drove to the command post at the Mt. Baldy trailhead where we readied our gear. We were about to head up the trail when we heard on the radio that LA's rescue 5 chopper had successfully evac'ed the patient.
We decided to do the second part of our training, Cauhilla Creek Cave, which is near Temecula. This was a fun talus cave that is about a mile hike from the road. We had a reporter and a cameraman with us and I think they enjoyed themselves. It will be interesting to read the article.
At the end of the day we received verification on the possibility that we would be needed for a search for a missing woman in Indio. The call entailed us showing up at the command post in indio at 0630 which required us to leave the Sheriff's Office in San Bernardino at 0500. This meant that I would have to wake up a 0345... joy! So after about 4 short hours of sleep I jumped out of bed and into my car and drove to San Bernardino.
We showed up on time at the CP in Indio and feasted on some egg mcmuffins, yum. After the briefing we were assigned an area to search and we drove out and started searching. We searched for about 4 hours when we were called back to the CP where they said they needed Alpine certified rescuers to find some lost Boy Scouts on San Jacinto. Once our gear was ready and we were about to leave we were notified that the scouts were found and were being pulled of the mountain.
We then ate lunch and continued our search for the missing woman. After a few more hours of looking for her in the hot sun and not finding her we were called back. It was a long weekend and I was tired. I fell asleep as soon as me head hit the pillow.
I just bought my tickets to the Body Worlds exhibit at the California Science Center. I have been putting if off for the last few months, and in doing so I was only able to attain tickets for 1:00AM on Sunday! Oh well it will still be fun.
I will take tons of photos As i just read: "The taking of photographs or filming in the exhibition is prohibited", but I will still try and sneak some anyway.
So after working 19 days straight and having a really lame weekend I finally got my R&R on!
It all started Friday night. I was hanging out at ezw's apartment and Jason Game rolled through talking about a party up in the hollywood hills. When I heard that I was like... forget free thinking... I'm going up to the hills. So we jumped in my car around 11 and drove up into the hills.
After about 2 miles driving up that one curvy ass road we came to the house. It had the most amazing view I have ever seen at a house. It was even better than the high-tech mansion was! The whole front of the house was glass from floor to ceiling.
The night was so clear you could see all the way to signal hill in long beach. There was all the beer you could drink and a fill wet bar (ok pretty full). and some nice melodic dnb was playing... the only problem is that we were the only ones there at 11pm.
After a little while a few more carloads of guys showed up until there were 2 girls (on had left) and about 20 guys.
At this point I told jason i thought i was gonna take off... unless 5 carloads of girls showed up. As I sat there I kid you not, girls kept coming down the stairs until the ratio was even at about 12:30...
The ratio got even better as guys started leaving after about 2am... but there was still booze flowing and i was in my element... i walked around and met every single woman that was at the party...
i recognized them but didn't know where from... then i heard sombody mention it was like club bang in here and it all clicked....