oooh, alliteration. But seriously, I signed up for a 14 day free trial of Real Rhapsody so I could get some 1000 points or something over at MyPoints. I figured, sign up, get points, cancel. Except... I really like it. A Lot.
Let me explain. This subscription doesn't just allow you to download songs legally; it is pretty much a juke box. If I'm at home, I have access to a zillion and a half songs, but at work I never listen to music cuz toting around CDs is a hassle and frankly unless it's a mix cd, I get bored. Okay, it's true, I'm not really supposed to be using the internet to listen to music at work, either, but it's probably a little more permissable than using my work computer for downloading music illegally with WinMX or something.
There are several ways to listen to music. You can search for what you want to hear by artist, song, or album OR you can search by genre. Each genre also includes a sample playlist, so say you want to listen to Rock/pop, then you can select say Adult Contempory and then you can go further and get say Lite Rock and there is a sampler of songs at each of those levels. You get the idea... the smaplers alone are numerous and THEN there are the "radio stations" which are also chosen by genre and just go go go with that song. I'm listening to the 70s station today! haha Tomorrow I'm doing 80s! I've listened to everything from Judas Priest to the Rolling Stones to Brad Paisley to Avril Lavigne. You can listen to a full album or you can make a playlist of a bunch of different songs. In other words, the options are endless! Can you tell I'm liking this? Okay, it costs $9.95 per month and I'm now cnsidering paying it, because my workdays have been much more fun listening to music all day. Macho Man just finished playing! hahahaha Truly, this is cool... oh, and you can download songs for 79 cents each, but why bother when you can do that on WinMX?
If you haven't checked this out, I would recommend giving the free trial a spin and see what it's like. For me, it's GREAT for work, now that I'm in my own little office and won't bug others with tunes on. It's cool. Check it out.
:: Jenn 4:57 PM
Yea! I sent my brother Lightning by Dean Koontz when he was in Iraq via the Bookcrossing thingy and a new journal entry just got put in from baghdad! Yea! No one ever journals on the books I leave anywhere, so I just haven't done it, but now my excitement has been renewed and I think I'll drop a couple off! Wheeeeeeeeeeee!
:: Jenn 10:02 AM
:: Tuesday, June 29, 2004 ::
True & Passionate Love
Scrabble. I freaking LOVE Scrabble. I mean, truly, deeply. I cna't understand how anyone doesn't love Scrabble. There is no logic to not liking it, let alone hating it, but lets not think about those freaks. Do you realize how happy I am that I now have computer Scrabble? Even though the dictionary disallows words I think should be allowed & allows things that shouldn't be(( The rules say: All words labeled as a part of speech (including those listed of foreign origin, and as archaic, obsolete, colloquial, slang, etc.) are permitted with the exception of the following: words always capitalized, abbreviations, prefixes and suffixes standing alone, words requiring a hyphen or an apostrophe. )), I don't care. I LOVE IT! SCRABBLE ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!! YEA!
:: Jenn 4:15 PM
It's true. I am in a BLOGGING mood! What's really cool is every link that I click through from my page on BlogSnob is a CURRENT link! YEA! Did I miss something? Have they cleaned up the rolls of dead links out there? YEA! That was actually fun. Nt only were they current blogs with posts from today, they were all pretty good. WOOT!
I wanted to do a quickie Audio Book Review. I haven't done one for a while. Weird. Anyway, last week I finished Portrait in Sepia by Isabel Allende. Apparently this was translated from Spanish. I've found that I like women's literature. That's how I would define this story. You know, these long sagas of a woman's life. Much like The Red Tent or the All True Tales of Lidie Newton, I really enjoy "reading" (hearing) the story of one woman from before she was born until it comes to an end. This one, while not as powerful as The Red Tent, was good. The settings were awesome: San Francisco & Chile, etc and most of the characters were brought to life in the telling. I wouldn't call it exceptional, but if you enjoy this type of read, I'd recommend this one.
The week before that, it was the Old Man and the Sea. I hadn't read it since high school and while I'm not a huge Hemmingway fan, this one's a classic for a reason.
As for this week, I'm just about to finish The Second Summer of the Sisterhood by Ann Brashares. Again, I picked up this teeny bopper book looking for something light to listen to between Portrait in Sepia and Cold Mountain, which is next and found myself caught up in the emotions these four young girls are experiencing. I laugh and sometimes it brings a tear to my eye. I'm not sure the exact age this is intended for because the writing style is somewhat young for the 17 year olds that the content seems to be targeted to and even at that age, it's a bit racy, but hey, I'm enjoying it at 35, so what the hell do I know? I like this one, but you definitely need to read the first book before this one to know what is going on with these girls. Or am I the only 35 year old who reads kids books??? heh
So, we wake up and get ready for the new day and start off with breakfast at Dot's Diner at the Shady Dell. This is the coolest little diner ever. Apparently, it was originally a diner on Ventura Blvd in LA, but later was left to rot somewhere before the Shady Dell owners bought it, refurbished it, and started serving. 10 stools and a kitchen, but very cool.
After that, we waved our goodbyes to our cozy little trailer and headed off in search of the next National Park.
We had to do some backtracking, but Coronado National Memorial was lovely. The audio-visual presentation was simple but good and we got to dress Mr. San Diego up like a conquistador. Then we headed off for a brutal hike up a mountain so that we could get a 360 degree view of the area. One nice thing about this trip was that so many of the cacti were in bloom. I was just awed by the beauty everywhere. I think Cholla is already fascinating, but with the pink blooms everywhere, it was also beautiful.
When we finished our hike, we opted to skip a trip into the cave there as we had a long drive to get to the next park in time to see it before dark, so we headed back the way we came on our way to Chiricahua.
We made one short detour for lunch in Douglas, Arizona, that would change the rest of our trip, not to mention the upcoming weeks! They had a Factory2U there that Mr San Diego decided we must visit since he hadn't toy shopped in DAYS! For those of you who are not familiar with Factory2U, it's pretty much like PicNSave or BigLots except rarely does anyone in there speak english. I'm not being weird or stereotypical, just honest. Even their signs are in Spanish and of course this one was on the mexican border so it was even more so than the ones here at home. Sorry, tangent. Well, whaddya know, they actually had a toy that Mr. San Diego collects! So, we have pretty much been to about 50 Factory2Us since then. yea me! I did find some cool flip flops there, though, so it wasn't all bad.
Back to the story. We left Douglas and headed north to Chiricahua National Monument, arriving just 45 minutes before the visitor center closed and in just enough time to get our tent set up in our campsite and see the visitor center. Armed with a map and some info fromt he ranger, we drove the 6 miles through beautiful rocks and trees up to the hiking spot. After just a couple of minutes we were already surrounded by the amazing rock formations created by a volcanic eruption millions of years ago. I had wanted to visit this park for some time and we were not disappointed. The formations were just awesome and we hiked in quite a ways before stopping to have a snack and a beer in the middle of all those crazy spires. We made it back out just before the sun went down. It was awesome and I could have spent a second day there had we not been on a schedule of sorts. I highly recommend this park if you get the chance. There is a small, but nice first come, first serve campground and a zillion hiking trails from wheelchair accessible to advanced terrain. GO THERE! Read one website because there is too much information to write here.
When we got back to the campground we had cheese sandwiches and beer for dinner. It was all the food we had left and we were a little unprepared due to the haste we made to get there in time, but Mr. San Diego found a mostly empty package of beef jerkey from day one in the truck, so we had meat!
We spent the rest of the night, sitting out in the dark playing 20 questions and, later, when it got cooler in the tent playing backgammon. It was good.
I don't know why I keep forgetting about this blog on the weekends... therefore I never get an pics up. Oh well. I did sign up for a picture host so one of these days I'll get to it.
Of COURSE the poker tournament on Saturday didn't pan out. We had forgotten that we had to pick up Mr. San Diego's dad from the airport that night. Next time.
We did a lot of other things on Saturday, like going to old town, and the Maritime Museum and the beach in La Jolla. It would have been a nice day, but I'm so drugged up from my headache medicine these days that I'm grumpy a lot.
Yesterday I spent all day scrapbooking and that was good. I am SOOOOO behind in my scrapbooking, so I am starting at the now and working abackwards like I did in the old days. Starting with the Honeymoon. It's coming out good, but I wish I could work in double time. Most of the time wasted is just me trying to figureo ut what to do to make it cute, though.
Jimmie increased his lead of Junior by coming in 5th at Sonoma. What can I say? My driver ROCKS! It helped that Junior came in 11th. The big bummer was Rusty doing soooo great all day and then running out of gas on the LAST LAP! That really sucked. Mr. San Diego was not happy with that. I told him he should pick a new guy, who wins sometimes. He hates it when I say that. heh It would be great if Rusty could get up there in the points, but I think at this point, thats not going to happen. Mr. SD will just have to root for Jimmie to be the Champ!
One guy who is totally tweaked this year is Tony Stewart. He's just getting weirder and weirder... needs to chill!
On our fourth day of the honeymoon, we were awaken by this really annoying bird chirping in the tree outside of our tent. So we got up and packed our site up and headed out. We stopped for gas and breakfast, which was alright if you could keep the flies away long enough to take a bite. Then it was off to Tombstone.
The thing you need to understand about Tombstone is that it is a tourist trap. You can't exactly skip it, because, well, it's there. But, the place will nickel and dime the hell out of you if you let it. We took a horse drawn carriage ride around the town to get some history, which was hard to hear on the garbled speaker. We stopped in the Birdcage Theatre, the only original building left on the main street there and enjoyed some 5 cent beers at Big Nose Kate's Saloon. I recommend BNK Saloon for a couple of reasons. First, they are very friendly there! Second, they have lots of "dress up" clothes and stuff lying around that you can try on and take your picture. It's fun and cool. Oh, and they really do have 5 cent beers. If you can't afford a real one, they'll just turn the mug upside down and fill up the indentation on the bottom of the mug for a nickel. =)
One weird thing, was that one of the guys working there kept going on and on how Mr. San Diego looks like Senator Kerry. I have sinced perused some pictures of said Senator and I just don't see it.
We did see the most important site there in Tombstone, I mean outside of the graveyard (which we also saw). That was the world's largest rosebush. You know how fascinated I am with the "...est" of the world. So, we did the obligatory visit and got the hell out of there before we were poor. No, we did not watch the historama or the Gunfight re-enactment.
Heading south from Tombsone, we finally reached Bisbee in time to catch the Queen Mine Tour. I admit it wasn't as cool as I thought it would be, but we still liked it. Wait, it was cool... 47 degrees! But, not as "neat" as it sounded. But we still got to suit up in raincoats, hard hats and miner lights and head into the mine on a little train thingy. Fun stuff!
Then came the really cool part of the day. We checked in to our 1951 33' Royal Mansion Travel Trailer at the RV Park.
This was very cool. When we opened the door, Frank Sinatra was playing on the radio in the red and white kitchen. The black and white tv in the living room could only be used with the vcr, playing one of the vinatge movies or television shows in the VCR library. The record player had a box full of 45s from the 50s and our tiny little bed was covered with a vintage spread. We got comfy and after going out to dinner, we returned to watch some "tv". I really did explain that Plan 9 From Outer Space was considered the worst movie ever made and the The Blob was a much better choice, but Mr San Diego won and Plan 9, it was. We followed that up with a rousing game of Casper the Friendly Ghost from the game closet (think Sorry with stupid rules). Mr. San Diego is the Casper Champion and we were off to smoosh together in the tiny little bed for the night... perfect for honeymooners!
I'm PRETTY sure that on July 1st I'm going to head out to Hollywood after work to see Honeyslide again... just like the olden days. I'm excited! Whoooo! I used to go to Hollywood and Long Beach all the time to see these guys and I haven't done that in a LONG time. Of course, one of the members, my very good friend, had heart surgery last year so they haven't done a lot of gigs, but two of them sang at my wedding for me. That was awesome. Anyway, I'm just excited about the idea of heading out to Hollywood for a night in a club. I'll also get to see all of my groupie friends that follow the band so it's all good. Yea me!
How does one go from being "Yea! I'm so happy" to "Bleh... life sucks"? so quickly? I've decided that June is NOT my month. So, I guess I only have to ride it out for a couple more weeks, huh?
Here's something I haven't done for a while... MOVIE RATINGS!! This weekend we saw Chronicles of Riddick, Harry Potter, and Day After Tomorrow. Harry Potter was the best, but Day After wasn't so bad for a cheesy disaster flick. I REALLY wanted to see Dodgeball, but maybe I'll just have to wait for next weekend on that one. Speaking of next weekend I might actually get to play in a poker tournament! YEA! I'm so excited even though it's just a cheesy freeroll at Lake Elsinore. It's been a LONG time... I am READY! YEA!
On the third day we had to leave our "Romantic Presidential Jacuzzi Suite" after stopping by the free breakfast buffet (one of the best I've had for free!). We headed out for Saguaro National Park, which is just beautiful. The thing is that these Saguaro Cacti are amazing looking. I have seen my fill of cactus, but I guess I'd never seen Saguaros before and I love these guys! They take forever to grow as big as they are and they make such cool shapes.
(I stole that link... I hope I don't get in trouble!)
Anyway, after the amazing audio visual presentation at the visitor center (I'm not telling you the grand ending because you might go there someday and I don't want to spoil it!) we took a short hike to see some petroglyphs and take some photos and then we headed back out onto the highway. Our Destination was about 40 minutes south of Tucson, but we got sidetracked by a sign that said "Titan Missile Museum". We did a screeching turn off of the freeway and pulled into the museum for a quick look-see that became a two hour visit and tour of the site and missile silo. I do believe that this was Mr. San Diego's favorite part of the trip. If you have a chance to see this, I recommend it. It's fascinating and scary all at once.
After the tour we were back on the road headed to Tumacacori National Historic Site, which is also one of the stops on the Juan Bautista de Anza National Historic Trail (which starts in Mexico and goes all the way to San Francisco) so it was like two National Park stops in one! We didn't know this until we were there and visiting the Visitor Center. This was a nice stop and I bought the guidebook so that I could read aloud about each of the things we were seeing. Mr. San Diego LOVED me reading out loud. Really.
After consulting the Ranger, we decided to camp out about an hour towards our next destination at Patagonia Lake State Park, which was a great choice. We made friends with our campsite neighbor who gave us unprepared city slickers some wood for a campfire and we enjoyed a night by the fire having some beers and chatting with our new friend. We only wished we had our jet ski when we first got there! It was another awesome day.
I'm thinking (no, it doens't hurt) that I should start blogging more. Maybe it would keep me from being so hysterical at work all the time if I took some time out of my day each day to type away all of my frustrations. No no, I'm not going to blither EVERY day about all of the assholes I work with... only sometimes. I actually just sat down and read a couple of blogs out there that I havne't had time to visit for a while. I felt better! Of course, I'm skipping lunch, so who knows how long that will last.
Anyway, one thing that I like about staying the night at my mom's house (besides that she feeds me and buys me beer) is that when I wake up to pee in the middle of the night, I always get to hear her saying funny things in her sleep. heh Last night she was arguing with someone about using an envelope as a doorstop and how stupid that was. Pretty amusing.
Luckily, in the nick of time, she reminded me about the contest in Budget Travel Magazine. The deadline for entries was last night, so I quickly wrote a little short story about our trip to Peru and attached a picture and emailed it off. Cross your fingers for me, the prize is a trip to Africa! The thing is that every issue they publish "regular people's" travel stories and the best one in the issue wins a prize. Usually, it's a camera, but this one is an African Safari, which is like my dream vacation, so I did it. Most of the stories they publish are really stupid. They're like "... and I trie don the dress and it was too small!!! HAHAHAHAHA" and we're reading it going, uh, that wasn't funny. Of course, they also only let you write 250 words so I had to pare mine down and still I only got it down to 288, so I hope they don't disqualify me. My story was about how we took HotWheels to Peru for the kiddies. I was going for the "see how awesome we are sharing our American wealth with these poverty stricken children" and "oh, here's a funny anecdote about giving Hot Wheels to kids" angle. SO hopefully the comination can net me a trip. I won't hold my breath though. I enter sooooo many contest and never have won anything BIG yet. I'll keep trying though!
So, we woke up bright and early on Tuesday (05/25) morning, crawled out of our tent, and breakfasted on Cheese & Crackers, once again. Mr. San Diego spent a great deal of time, gaining the trust of a little ground squirrel that he eventually had eating out of his hand even though I told him NOT TO DO THAT as feeding animals is BAD and makes them stop finding their own food. But, it was cute to see! I got a picture. AND, my pictures SHOULD be back by Friday. AND, I'm researching picture hosts so I can actually get some pics up online for a change.
Once we got packed up, we headed over to the Visitor Center at Organ Pipe National Monument and watched the Audio Visual program, then looked at all of the exhibits. After talking to a ranger, we headed out for a hiking spot she suggested. We found the place easily and hiked in to a canyon and had a nice time doing it. We probably hiked a couple of miles total. But, Mr. SD left the GPS in the truck so we didn't get to "mark our spot". Afterwards we went to a picnic area and had a lunch of potato salad and beer and chatted with a couple visiting from England. Then it was time to hit the road and we were off for Tucson.
After a couple of hours on the road, we arrived in Tucson. Since SOMEONE forgot our Arizona Tour Book that my mommy bought us (uh, that was me) we stopped in at a local library to look throughsome books on the area and got the info for the Tucson Visitor Bureau. After picking up some hotel suggestions at the Visitor Bureau, we had dinner at a place called El Charro Cafe, which I had read about in Budget Travel Magazine. I ate the special (Carne Seca) and had dessert tamales to top it off, which were Pumpkin flavored, and DELICIOUS. I'd never had one of those. I recommend dessert tamales. Yum!
Whie we were eating, Mr. San Diego called around and tracked down a hotel with a jacuzzi for us to stay the night at. We arrived at the Inn Suites and noted that it had seen it's finer days, but it would work. AFter getting settled in and getting a couple of free Bud Lights (I rarely admit to drinking Bud Light - no I rarely DRINK Bud Light, but hey, they were free for guests) in the bar, we changed into our swimsuits for a relaxing soak in the jacuzzi.
Alas, it was not to be. Even though we ahd called ahead, the jacuzzi was not working properly. So, Mr. San Diego, in his usual squeaky wheel way went to complain at the front desk which hooked us up with a "Romantic Presidential Jacuzzi Suite" upgrade for the night for no extra charge! Very cool. It had a bedroom and living room and TWO bathrooms AND a jacuzzi in the bedroom so we could watch TV while we jacuzzi'd! Yea! It was FUN. I recommend "Romantic Presidential Jacuzzi Suites"!
People are freaking LAZY! I'm sick of people! THEY MADE ME CRY!!!! Bastards!
Okay, had to get that out. After a perfectly lovely weekend I have to come back to work to a bunch of assholes. It just gets to me. I thought by today we'd be smooth sailing after the move drama, but of course we aren't done, and the torture continues. just a little longer. I just keep telling myself that. I think the worst part is just the fact that my boss is no help at all and worthless to boot. He does some schmoozing, but other than that, he doesn't do a whole hell of a lot and then when I ask for a little assistance from him, he is worthless. I'm so sick of it. Oh, okay, sorry, I'll stop. As you can tell my day is sort of sucking. Anyway, I'll move on to nicer topics and finally get out DAY TWO!
I promised the Honeymoon details, so here goes. We left California on Monday and headed out the 8 Freeway for Arizona in Mr. San Diego's new Sport Trac. It was a great road trip vehicle, except that the seats don't lay back.
Our first stop was a landmark called Desert Tower on the border of San Diego and Imperial Counties. It's a big ol' tower that was built long ago and some guy also decided to carve up the rocks surrounding it into animal shapes, real and imagined. We hiked around on the rocks after seeing the museum in the tower and then headed back on the road.
When we arrived in El Centro, we had to stop at one of Mr. San Diego's work locations to drop off some materials, so we kicked around there for a while, hit a Target and then had burgers at Sonic Burgers, which I LOVE and can't understand why they don't have any out here! Hmmm... sort of a run-on sentence there. Anyway, we got back on the highway and made one last stop before we hit Arizona.
Felicity, CA is a town that is comprised of an author who writes about a dragon who lives in the Center of the World, so he got his city to be considered the "Center of the WOrld". The pyramid in the center is the exact CENTER OF THE WORLD, but unfortunately, they pretty much close the touristy part after April so we just got pics of everything from the outside and no postacrds as the gift shop was closed. Then we were on our way to Arizona!
After a loooong drive, we arrived at our destination for the night, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, after dark. We set up the tent, kicked back with some cheese, crackers and beer and watched the stars. It was gorgeous there. After a while we climbed into the tent and... played soem backgammon before crashing =)
I have literally worked my ass off this week. I was on my feet all week so I'm having a lay around on the couch watching 100 most metal moments on VH1 sort of day. hehe
We're almost all moved out of the old building at work and next week we will focus on getting moved IN to the new building. It's been a lot of work and I'm not going to bother blithering on and on about it and how wiped out I am from it all =) It's the weekend! yea!
...the best part, I have my own office with a door finally. AND it's a nice air-conditioned building. Lovin' it. But have once again found out which employees go onto the BAD list. You'd think people would be forward looking especially when they are entry level, but no, they'd rather act stupid and burn bridges. Silly rabbits.