Oh Fair New Mexico has moved! Click below and update your bookmarks!:

March 31, 2008

Head out for the highway

Yes, Monday finds me back at my same gray walled office. Back to work, slogging through emails and working up my expense report.

All in all, the trip to Florida was a good one.

I'm glad to be home. It was a long haul on Saturday, hopping a couple planes and ultimately arriving almost two hours later than I was supposed to. But I made it and a really cute boy was waiting for me when I came down the stairs to baggage claim.

I didn't sleep well on the trip, so was glad to sleep in my own little bed, and sleep I did. Woke up Sunday morning MUCH refreshed. The Good Man fussed over me and that helped get me right, too.

Back to "regular" work today. While making the drive in this morning, I was thinking about what made the Florida trip fun, and I hit on a thought.

I got to drive.

Now, don't gave me that doggy head tilt look. Let me explain.

"Back in the day" living in New Mexico, one of my best stress relievers was to get in the car and drive. Not always with a destination, sometimes just driving, watching the white lines roll by.

Since I went to school in Las Cruces and my folks lived in Carlsbad, I had a LOT of hours in the middle of NOWHERE, hum of the tires as my companion.

I got a LOT of good thinking done during those drives.

Meditation. That's really what it is.

Well now living here in a densely populated area, just getting in the car and going isn't all that meditative. With all the traffic, it is stress inducing.

When I lived in Albuquerque, I could drive for a half hour in pretty much any direction and be OUT of the city, humming along at 75 mph, and letting the stress float away.

Here, I can drive a half hour and be ever more mired in humanity.

So I enjoyed the fact that, last week, I got some road time. The ride on I-4W to Clearwater Beach took about two and a half hours all in. It was a little densely populated around Tampa Bay and that stressed me, but had moments of a peaceful ride. It got really good when I got off I-4 and into the small roads winding through Clearwater and over all the causeways.

The trip to Cocoa Beach was only about an hour and was PERFECT for highway meditation. (see, I still can find NOTHING wrong with Cocoa Beach). SR-528E is pretty rural, away from people, not heavily trafficked on a weekday. The tolls do take a bit away from that trip, but even they are manageable. You get a rhythm of hitting the various toll plazas and you know they'll be there (kind of like having to stop at a Border Patrol station…so it's all good).

And during those two drives a lot of thinking got done. Some useful (i.e. where should I emphasize success criteria for my team this year), some not (i.e. why do so called "80's" radio stations only play the cheesy "hits" like "Jump" (both Van Halen and Pointer sisters), and not the deeper cuts from bands like Depeche Mode or The Cure?).

Getting all that thinking done is healing. I find I'm in a better mood today than when I left. Like I've grown from my journey.

I sure wish I could more easily hit the open road from where I live to think things out.

Oh well, just another reason to miss my fair New Mexico.

March 28, 2008

If still water runs the deepest…

…then what does Clearwater do?

Sits there and shimmers like the jewel of the Gulf that it is…

(This is not my photo but this is right where I was)


I was astounded that the white sand at Sand Key Beach was literally FILLED with seashells, mostly tiny scallop shells. Now, the bottoms of my feet are pretty well beat up from walking on all the jagged edges, but the effect, running hands through sand and finding shell after shell after shell was so very cool.

That's the kick about warm, fairly calm water. Not only shells, INTACT shells.

If you'll excuse the crappy quality of this iPhone photo…look at THESE little beauties! I personally snagged them from the floor of the ocean.

I think my eyes bugged out of my head when I saw them bouncing around in the sand. My cheap but effective goggles kept my eyes in my head as I paddled down to the bottom of the shallow sea floor and scooped them up. There were thousands of them down there!

These are coming home with me, a love gift for a certain wonderful man.

I'll say this, the Gulf wasn't as warm as I remember from my last visit at South Padre Island. It was pretty cold, actually. Much colder than the Atlantic. Though nowhere near as cold as the Pacific.

Oh, which reminds me…in the course of less than one week, I've visited three oceans.

Sunday, I was at Half Moon Bay, gazing at the beautiful but tumultuous Pacific. Tuesday I was at Cocoa Beach, at peace with the Atlantic and today, Friday, it was Clearwater Beach and the Gulf.

Cool, huh?

Clearwater was recommended to me by four separate locals, so that's why I chose to run out there today. The choice of Sand Key Beach was because it was public and it was away from the main drag of hotels and restaurants. There were a LOT of Spring Breakers out, so that wasn't fun.

All said, I prefer Cocoa Beach. It is just a lot more mellow and easy. But today's journey to the west coast of Florida was truly amazing. A day to remember.

I didn't end up taking many photos, sorry. This one will live on in my mind. Another happy place to escape to when work meetings drag on too long.

And now, to pack. While I had fun, I'm glad the week is over. I miss The Good Man and I miss the cranky feline too.

So tomorrow, with noise cancelling headphones in place, I hop a westbound plane and go back to the life I love. I'll be happy to snuggle down in my own bed and sleep contentedly with those I love the most.

March 27, 2008


I ended up taking this business trip to Florida on my own, and as such, I have been cooped up in this hotel for two solid days (literally….I jogged outside on a break during the conference today because I hadn't seen the sun in two days).

So tonight, I decided to venture out. On my own.

I have a good friend at work who grew up near Orlando and she recommended a local restaurant. With the grace of dog and a Google map, I headed out.

It's a place called Hemingway's. I was a little non-plussed given that it's part of the local Hyatt.

But this friend of mine has impeccable taste, so I trusted.

I made a reservation under the name "Smith" for one little me.

When I got to the place (after getting PROFOUNDLY lost on some Florida byways), I realized that I had forgotten to bring my book with me. I wondered what I'd do to entertain my lonely self.

There was no need to worry. My reservation was for 7:00pm which is just 4:00pm back at work.

So I checked email. Let me tell you, yes, I was one of those obnoxious people tapping at my iPhone over dinner.

But over the course of one and one half hours, here is what I was able to accomplish:

1) Lengthy email conversation with my boss to figure out bonus amounts for my team this quarter.

2) Email conversation with our team's admin to set up seating chart for our group office move in three weeks.

3) Also via email, set up this year's baseball bet for the season. Another $20 wager with that bum Dodger's fan friend of mine that the Giants will finish above his suck team in the final standings. Year one, I won. Year 2, he won. Year three, he won. My team is so lame this year I should just put away the $20 now…

4) Did SMS love to my work friend because that dinner was really top notch, she was spot on.

5) Assigned a project to one of my employees.

and most importantly…

6) Exchanged love words with The Good Man because I miss him so terribly much.

Not a bad day's work over a glass of Pinot Noir and some really delicious scallops.

With belly full, I'm back in my hotel room, bloaty, happy and ready to sleep well tonight.


March 26, 2008

Time Zone Zombie

I got approximately three hours of restless sleep last night. See, while it was midnight on the right coast of the country, over there on the left coast, it was still early evening. Prime time for me!

So there wasn't much sleeping. And then there was getting up early to make a 7:00am breakfast-slash-meet-'n-greet for this meeting. The meetin' and greetin' is useful, very useful, but I'm afraid I wasn't *quite* on my game today. God bless Starbucks for getting me through.

Now I'm sitting in a stuffy hotel conference room, breathing stale air and the odor of drying, toughening "hotel chicken" wafting in from the kitchen.

But hey, a hard day hotel conferencing still beats a good day toiling at my desk at work. And we will actually finish at 5:00pm today. Go figure! I can't complain…or rather, I can, but I shouldn't.

I think it will be early to bed tonight. Right around the point I'm used to living la vida Eastern Time Zone, I'll hop a west-bound plane.

Good times…

March 25, 2008

There is nothing wrong with Cocoa Beach

If you've known me for a while, you've heard me say this phrase.

A lot.

If you are new to the obsessive compulsive wonders that are Karen, then let me explain.

About ten years ago, I was sent to Orlando on business. I worked for Lockheed back then and we were sent out to have a love fest with the Orlando folks. We were all supposed to be getting along like one big happy corporate family, but we weren't. The Lockheed and Martin merger was…tricky, to say the least.

So on that last trip, me a timid little New Mexico girl, I had some spare time on my hands and I quaveringly looked at the Florida map and planned a drive. An easy drive out of Orlando. About an hour all on one road. Albeit a toll road, which added to the stress.

So I went to Cocoa Beach. Yes, it's all very I Dream of Jeannie, but it had a familiar ring and it was coastal.

While there, I stumbled onto something great. Well, first I went to Ron Jon Surf Shop. As a NM girl, surfing isn't exactly something I know much about. But one day at work I'd found a coffee mug that looked cool and it was from Ron Jon in Cocoa Beach. So I was happy to explore this strange place.

I was stunned by how utterly cool the store was. I timidly tried on bathing suits (two piece, ooh la la) from their endless racks of suits. I ended up boldly purchasing an orange two piece, put it on, then sashayed down the block from the shop and out onto the beach.

It. Was. Awesome. As soon as I got over my timidity, that is. That was the first two piece I'd ever owned. I felt…naked.

Soon enough I was splashing in the warm Atlantic and having one hell of a good time. The people were nice. The people watching was fun and that was one of those days that lives in my memory. A happy place, if you will.

And upon my return, I told anyone who would listen: "There is *nothing* wrong with Cocoa Beach. It is perfect!"

So here I am, once again sent on business to Orlando. And today I got a chance to go once more eastbound on SR-528. I was no less nervous this time, but more prepared. I had a film canister full of quarters for the toll-booths and I knew where I was going. I drove a little more confidently as I have ten extra years of livin' to go along for the ride.

Upon rolling into Cocoa Beach, I was disappointed. It's grown a LOT in ten years. What I liked about it back then was that there wasn't much to the town. Mostly locals and a few tourists. This time there are A LOT of tourists and stores everywhere. The upside, they built a parking structure. Parking was a bear last time.

I went to Ron Jon again. And once again, I shopped for swimming suits. Yes, two pieces, but the more modest tankini's this time. They still have endless racks of really cool suits. And I still had great success there, purchasing not one but two. Yay!

I didn't put one on, tho, it was actually not all that warm today (low sixties with a cool wind). But I still hauled my cookies down the block and out onto the beach.

And as this photo will show, I found everything to be juuuuuuust fine:

Yes, those are my toes in the foreground. And that is the Atlantic ocean in the background.

It's still warm. Or at least one hell of a lot warmer (and calmer) than the Pacific. I picked at shells on the beach, not taking any, just looking. The Pacific is so rough no shell makes it to the shore intact.

Once again, I found NOTHING wrong with Cocoa Beach. It is a little slice of heaven.

Except for this Portuguese little fella. A Man O' War they call it.

And these two yahoolios.

Think the friend will pee on the guy who will soon have stinging hands? (as they say uric acid will help the burn…I don't know if that's actually true……)

But even with stinging fish and brainiacs on Spring Break, it was still a perfect day.

Tomorrow, it's game face. Start at 7:00 and sit all day in a hotel conference room. But that's ok…when the attention span wanders, I'll go again to my happy place. This time I have photos!

March 24, 2008

Notes from an Eastbound plane

Flying makes me thoughtful. Herewith, my thoughts from some seven hours in the air in which I also lost three time zones.

Oddly, today, this is a New Mexico blog written by a Californian visiting Florida.


Thoughts from the skies:

1) Noise cancelling headphones. Da bomb. How did I ever live without them? Best Christmas gift evar!

2) Traveling to warm vacation spots while Spring Break is in swing means you will be required to endure obnoxious teenagers. A LOT of obnoxious teenagers.

3) Exit row window seat. Yes. Leg room. View. Ability to move. Middle seat empty…even better.

4) Southwest's new boarding process? May as well go back to plastic numbers because that's basically what it is again. 1-30, 31-60, 61-90, blah, blah, blah…been there, done that. Only this time with letters!

5) Breakfast at home…always a good idea. Even more so when flying for the WHOLE day. Even if it is just tomato soup, it's a good idea.

6) Comfy pants = happy traveler. The ones that are like two sizes too big and I just don't care.

7) Pocket full of tissues is a good thing. Especially in allergy season. Those little square napkins that come with your drink don't cut it. It was a last minute thought but proved to be the best decision all day.

8) Who is Southwest kidding with these "100 calorie" snack packs. Give me eight! I don't care, I'm HUNGRY! Turns out tomato soup wasn't enough to last all day. It got me to…oh, San Antonio then I wanted some real eats.

9) Why don't you get the whole can of soda on the plane anymore?

And finally…

10) Just so you know…Ethel Merman has been reincarnated as a toddler. Yes, a solid hour of singing with the pitch and tone of a three year old and the gusto of Ethel herself. At one point the child hit a "Laaaaaaaaaa" and held it there. Which brings us back to #1.

Noise cancelling headphones. *Highly* recommended.

March 21, 2008


: slurp, smack, much, bite, slurp, smack, smack :

Happy Easter, ya'll

Oh, Happy First Day of Spring too!

March 20, 2008

East bound and down…

…loaded up and truckin'

Yes, I just quoted the theme from "Smokey and the Bandit" and I'm not sorry.

Ok, maybe a little sorry. But I'd do it again.

I'm in kind-of-panicked but mostly excited mode because I have some travel coming up next week.

In the many long years I've worked at The Company, I've only traveled a scant three times. This will be my fourth trip on the company dime.

I get to go to Northern Florida. For a conference.

There's not a lot going on in the Northern half of Florida. But that's ok. I got that "anywhere but here" thing going. I haven't traveled in a REALLY long time and I'm anxious to get going. I do love to go places.

There are some downsides.

1) It's Florida. And still Spring Break season. I may have to pimp slap some drunk college kids. I'll do it too.

2) I'm not going for fun. I'm going to work. True, a conference isn't exactly *work*, but it involves sitting indoors, eating conference chicken and being over air conditioned to within an inch of my life.

3) It is one long ass plane ride to get from the left coast to the right one. Yeah, shaddup all you "oh, but to fly to Australia is WAY longer" or whatever. I'm just saying… Mama gets restless on a plane. Five hours plus three time zones is just long enough to piss me off, not long enough to get anywhere really good…like London or something.

4) Disney. God I hate Disney. And there is little else to do BUT freakin' Disney where I'm going. Gaaaaah! I Googled "fun non-Disney things to do" and found…well, not much.

Oh well. It's a trip. That I'm not paying for. It will be warm. I won't have to sit at my desk. And the Atlantic is warm.

So there you have it.

I keep thinking "oh, I should pack goggles" then remind myself "WORK! This is work!"

I am taking the camera tho…I'll share any interesting shots. (nod to Avelino on this)

March 19, 2008

Why is this news?

Anderson Cooper has had a mole!

Yet every news source I've visted today has this as a top headline.

Slow news day?


Bouncy, bouncy, bouncy…

No, I’m not doing an Easter bunny impression. Tho Easter is nigh…can you JUST believe it? Easter already. To where do the months evaporate?

Meanwhile, back to my anticipatory restlessness.

I have truly become an internet consumer. I ordered something *really cool* online last week. They said it would ship the next day. It did not. My expectation was one day ship. I demand one day ship!

Yesterday I navigated an awful call tree at Big Conglomerate (and I work for a different Big Conglomerate and procure call trees as part of my job, so I know from which I speak) and when I finally got a real person on the line, I screwed up my righteous indignation and demanded to know where my not inexpensive product was.

I was told, "huh…we can't figure out why it didn't ship. I need to contact the warehouse. It will take 24 to 48 business hours to get back to you."

Business hours? Ok, where I come from "business day" is eight hours. I'm no good at math, but 24 divided by 8 is THREE DAYS.

To which I replied, "I am NOT happy with that estimate".

They said that was just to protect in case of a weekend, but they really meant one to two days.

One day has elapsed. No response.

Back on the phone. In an endless hold queue.

How 'bout this to ponder. Why does on hold music universally SUCK? It is the soundtrack to my insanity. It really is.

Meanwhile, my leg is bouncing.

I reeeeeally want this item I've ordered. It's not like air or food or something. I just have internet buyer lust.

Plus, by buying something, I'm, like, helping the economy, maaahn!


"Please continue to hold and your call will be answered in the order it was received."

: hostile :

March 18, 2008


You know, at this point in my life, I should no longer be shaken by oddity in the world. I mean, in my few years on the planet, I've seen a lot of weird sh*t.

But still, life can wallop me with a new one.

This weekend, The Good Man and I were out and about, coming home from an early dinner when we turned a corner on a quiet street near the county hospital. As we crested a small hill in our mild suburban neighborhood, we saw a man walking determinedly up the street wearing a hospital gown with ill fitting tighty-whities hanging out the back (thank god he was wearing them). His plastic hospital bracelet was flapping in the breeze and he was padding along in white tube socks, despite the chilly drizzling rain.

Now this disturbed me. Not just because I'm usually loath to view the tighty-whities of a stranger, but when I say this man was "walking determinedly", I mean…WITH A PURPOSE. What purpose, I cannot speculate, but when you see someone walking with that kind of purpose, you figure they are up to something, possibly no good. Add to that visage the hospital gown, aforementioned tighty-whities and the darkening night and you have a freak out factor straight out of all those g'damn horror movies I like to watch.

The Good Man and I had a moment of the "what do we do" conversation. We decided calling 911 was probably too much. So we looped back to the hospital and went inside to tell them one had escaped. They said they were aware of it and really, unless the guy was being held for a 5150, there was little they could do.

Now….I'm a Van Halen fan like anyone else. I know what 5150 means! Has to do with but a psych case. Well, ok, so the good news is that the guy was NOT a 5150, right. Ok……

Well, none of this actually made me *feel* any better.

However, as we made our way back home, we turned another corner and AHHHH! There he was again!!

Ok, in truth we saw five police cars and officers standing in the street and what The Good Man and I now dubbed "Underpants Man" standing on the sidewalk holding his gown closed in the back and looking a little wild eyed.

Seeing many of the county's finest should have made me feel better. But it didn't. All evening The Good Man and I were peeking out the kitchen window to see if Underpants Man was standing out there, zombie-like. Purpose in mind.

I tend to think of my little neighborhood as quiet and peaceable. And it is, usually. Normally all the folks at county hospital stay there and allow treatment. And I'm fine with that.

I can't imagine all the things that led up to Underpants Man bolting the hospital.

I hope wherever he is today, he's got dry socks, fresh tighty-whities and feels safe.

And I give thanks for my own clean, dry socks, chones, and The Good Man to keep me safe.

(You know, I usually end my blog posts with a photo of something relevant…and the most relevant was, of course, tighty-whities. But that didn't seem, you know, appropriate. So instead, here is a photo of The Feline asleep on my desk to help us wipe that mental image of Underpants Man out of our collective minds, ok? Isn't she cute?)

March 17, 2008

Pass the cake!

Feliz CumpleaƱos para my blog!

Yup, it was a year ago today that I kicked off my little New Mexico blog, unsure if I was going to make it past a few months.

Here I am one year and 233 posts later, going as strong as ever.

I've learned a lot on this road.

Blogging is harder than it looks.

Before I'd get pissy when my fave bloggers didn't post something every day. Now, I'm a lot more understanding. It's no small feat to have something to say every day.

Also, it's made me a bit more microscopic in my view of the world (not like I needed any help in that department). Most everything I see in my life is a potential blog topic.

Even The Good Man will comment, "hey, you could blog about that".

It's also given me some writing discipline. I can crank out words, and that's cool.

More confidence too, in my writing.

And best of all, I've met some new online friends who've been helpful to me with ideas, suggestions, and support.

Plus it has made my feline an internet celeb! :)

If my blog were a person, I'd give this little one year old a cake and let the face mashing good times begin.


March 14, 2008

Take nothing for granted

I'm sure the young man who planned on mugging 83 year old Bernie Garcia thought it was going to be an easy take. A little old lady pumping gas outside a store in Santa Fe.

But the one thing he didn't count on was the lady's tenacity.

As Bernie pumped gas, a whippersnapper leapt out of a car and grabbed at her purse.

From the article:

"With a gas pump nozzle in one hand and her purse in the other, Garcia refused to give in to the male assailant's effort to yank her purse away— this in spite of her being dragged on her side during the struggle."

"What happened next was a tug of war between a man in his 20s and an 83-year-old woman who stands 5 feet 4 and weighs 125 pounds."

"He grabbed my left arm and went for my purse," Garcia recalled. "He started pulling on it, but couldn't get it off me because (the strap) was winded twice around my arm."

She wanted to bop him with the gas nozzle but couldn't manage it so she sprayed gasoline on him instead.

A bystander pulled up as this was happening and yelled at the kid who he ran off, jumped into a car (that had been stolen in EspaƱola earlier that day) and took off.

Police responded quick and the three guys in the car were arrested.

Meanwhile, Ms. Bernie Garcia, my hat is off to you. I don't know if I could have been that clear headed in the same situation.

"It happened so fast, and I just fought, even though I was scared," she said. "I just wanted to slap him in the face."

He deserves at least that.

I always say you gotta watch out for the little ones. Little, but scrappy.

Source: ABQJournal

March 13, 2008

It's not just me!

Apparently all my navel gazing might just be "scientific" because, according to yesterday's ABQjournal, I'm not the only one interested in minutiae.

Click here to read: A Fly's Mind Not So Simple.

Yes, Los Alamos scientists have been studying how the brain of a common housefly works.

"For decades, researchers have studied how the neurons of flies and other subjects have processed and responded to the world."


Hell, they even took the flies on a little field trip to the woods of Princeton, New Jersey with teeny tiny little electrodes attached to their teeny tiny little heads.

I mean, that's some good microscopic work!

Now if they could only tell me where all the CalTrain punched numbers go!

March 12, 2008

Minutiae, day two

Yeah, I'm really on this microscopic thang. Bear with me, it will pass.

Today's subject of my intense scrutiny is the ticket validator machines for CalTrain.

Here's the situation. To catch a commute on the train you gotta have a ticket to get 'er done. Some people do single rides. You buy that day of from a machine at the station. Some people do a monthly pass. You get that in advance (or from the machines). You just flash that to the conductor and it keeps you on the train.

But for many of us, we buy a ten-ride ticket (more cost effective if you ride occasionally, not every day). So in order to get a ride, you have to punch your ticket. So to do that, you slip the ticket into the validator machine and it punches your ticket, stamps date and expiration time (four hours), and cuts off the ride number on the side.

Here, better to go visual on this. Please excuse the crappy iPhone photos.

Here's what a ten-ride pass looks like:

Note the slots for the rides and you can see the numbers off to the side. You can see that this morning I punched off the number 5.

Here is the validator machine:

And obviously, here's how it works:

So here's my question. One of those "you've got way too much thinking time on your hands" type of deals.

What happens to all of those punched numbers? I mean, look at the machine, it's not that big?

A LOT of people punch their tickets every day. And as evidenced by the fact that they are always out of ink, the CalTrain people don't service the machines very often. So the punched numbers build up in there…I'm guessing.

Where do they go? I assume they stay up there in the red part, but that doesn't seem like a lot of room.

And when they service the machine, what do they do with the little numbered punchouts? Like confetti in there?

I posed this last night to The Good Man and he patiently suggested that they save them up for the CalTrain New Year's Eve parties.

But I really am curious. I mean, I suppose they just toss them out, but given that there are, like, 24 stations punching both northbound and southbound riders, that's a LOT of little punched numbers. It seems like something useful could be done with all of those?

Or am I over thinking it? Don't answer that…

Because mainly, all this ticket validator scrutiny was just me trying to distract my "no wanna go to work" mind. Succeeded, too, for a little while.

So while you too ponder little numbered confettis, here's my "art shot"…a glance northbound up the tracks, to help get you in the pondering mood.

March 11, 2008


I happen to be one of those kinda folks that often pays attention to minutiae in my daily life. I find it both exciting and aggravating that I’m like that.

But it's never boring.

Take for example, this weekend. I wrote letters to my two godkids then walked over to the blue post box near my place to mail them.

As I walked, I pondered how utterly cool it is that I can write some words on a piece of paper, seal it shut, put a sticker on the front, and through the power of humans and machines in about two to three days it will make it all the way to Las Cruces, New Mexico. To my friend's house on the outskirts of town. My words will travel 1200 miles and a human will put them into a metal box on a rural road.


Ok, I realize the US Mail has been around for a long time and it was probably, like a gazillion times more amazing back in the days when some guy rode a horse for DAYS to get a letter to someone in a remote location…like, er, Las Cruces. But still, the fact that it usually just works so effortlessly is really, really cool.

Even cooler, I recently got a package from a friend in London. How far out is that? I mean, I got a package from someone in a time zone eight hours ahead of mine. When I go to work he's going home for the day. And he sent me a book, and it came halfway around the globe (ok, not *quite* that far, don't go getting all literal on me while I'm blowing my own mind). Sure, that was UPS that made it so, but still.


I know the interwebs make communication more instant, but there is still something really cool about a written letter or a package from a friend.

It's been great to watch my two godkids grow up and come into their own. Through their written letters I learn a lot about their personalities, the people they are becoming. I could get that talking to them on the phone, but it's fascinating what they choose to write about.

Makes me proud. And I love writing them back, too.

Thanks to the simple magic of the USPS, my relationship with my godkids grows by each postmarked letter, line by line.

Hey Mr. Postman? Thanks for that!

March 10, 2008

Weekend round up!

With photos!

I have a little Sony Cybershot camera (an older version of this one). It's about five years old and the battery doesn't hold a charge like it should, but I carry it around in my purse in case photographic opportunities arise. Let me tell you, this little point and shoot has served me well.

I originally bought it to go to Spring Training because it has a zoom feature on it. A little zoom helps get the better shots at something like Spring Training (I now have a 75-300 lens for my big boy camera. Now that's some zoom!). Over the years I've pushed the bounds of what this little silver wonder was made to do, and it's always stepped up. It does get a little grainy when I zoom all the way out. And doesn't always zoom as far as I want it to, but that's ok.

So on Sunday, we had a *gorgeous* Bay Area day, so The Good Man and I met up with some friends in San Francisco's Marina for some lunch and then a walk in the sun.

We ended up following the path that leads to the Warming Hut at Crissy Field and ends at Fort Point under the Golden Gate Bridge.

As this area is stunningly beautiful, I, of course, brought my trusty little silver friend. Thing is, I've already taken a lot of shots in this area, and also, I was feeling like an oddball (which, if you know me, isn't all that rare) and wanted to take some different shots. Plus, as the youngest of three kids with older siblings who were closer in age, I learned how to entertain my ownself early on.

Herewith, Karen's self-entertainment for a sunny Sunday:

Here are the four of us taking a break at the Warming Hut. As you know, most people aren't interested in having their picture taken outright, so this was my sly attempt to capture the group. That's me on the right. The lazy tired sitting one and we were only about a quarter of the way into our walk…

And while we were there drinking water and coffee, there was another gaggle having their own gathering. "Hey, you got something to eat? A brotha sure is hungry……"

Since they were in shadow, the color is a little off, but you get the idea.

Then we moved along. I pried my heiny off the wall and the walk continued on to Fort Point.

Proof of the truly gorgeous day we had…

And again, like the yahoolio I am, the "grownups" were having conversation and what was I doing? Dorking around with my camera.

Here is a self-portrait. I like it. I think my hair looks cool. Plus, I'm gratified to see that my nose-grooming regimen appears to be working. It seems to be "all clear" up there…

Then after we were kicked out of Fort Point (they were closing for the day) on the walk back we found this handsome guy. He's a heron and was standing there posing for us like a supermodel. I got a couple shots mainly for my mom who I know is a bird person. Here ya go:

And I then moved slowly to the other side of him and got this one:

The day ended at Liverpool Lil's with some more good eats and a tasty (and warming) glass of wine.

And more of me goofing around with my camera.

See, the restrooms had this really amazing warm yellow light. And it also had mirrors on opposing walls and I've always loved that tunnel effect it makes.

Like, whoa, duuude....

All in, it was a good day. I realize that none of these shots are very illuminating, but they are very me and also remind me of a fun day with good friends. It's the kind of Sunday we should always have. Easy. Slow. Good eats. Friends.

Ah well, back to the sleep-deprived workday. I do love Daylight Savings but it's always such an adjustment.

But I was psyched that there was still light at 7:45 last night. Yes!

March 6, 2008

The healing powers of lunch

I just got back from having lunch with a good friend. A real lunch. Off site. At a restaurant where you sit down at a table, are served by a gracious waiter and use a cloth napkin.

No hurried dash to the company cafeteria for food placed into recyclable plastic containers and dining over my keyboard. I actually got UP from my chair, went out of doors and had a meal cooked just for ME.

And I have to say, my outlook on life has improved a lot today.

Like. A lot.

I feel less tense. More satiated. I'm less growly and grumpy.

They say breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but lunch ranks right up there. Lunch sets the tone for my whole afternoon. Yesterday, squinched at my desk slurping tomato soup and picking at a salad, I was cranky, uncreative, surly.

Today, I'm cracking jokes, feeling reasonable and creative. I'm happy. My team is happy. Hell, I even cancelled staff meeting, much to their joy.

Better living through Honey Walnut Prawns.

March 5, 2008

Windex, please

Today is a nice day. I mean a *really* nice day. Yesterday was a NICE day. Sunny. Clear. Warm.

What am I?

A *grownup*

What does that mean?

I have to *work*

I can't run around outside being silly and leaping after butterflies.

No, I have to be all *responsible*


It's not fair.

I'm in my office with my nose pressed against the window. The sun is *out there*! I can see it! I need to have that! Why do I have to sit here and read contracts while there is FUN outside!


rattin' smattin' employment……

March 3, 2008

A survivor's tale

They got me. It was an all out attack. Nasty little buggars. Small. Vicious. Pack mentality. They work best in groups, plan their strategy and take down their prey.

They tend to migrate. They know the best hunting grounds fresh with prey and return to them year after year. They spread. You never see just one or two. They multiply. Fast.

As old ones go out, new ones rush in to take their place. Unstoppable.

I ran into a nest of 'em right outside my grocery store. I never stood a chance.

Thankfully the losses were minimal. I got out with only a box of Thin Mints and a box of Samoas.

I'll know to keep my guard up next time......

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
All content of Oh Fair New Mexico by Karen Fayeth is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.