Sunday, July 22, 2012


Murray, Bodega Bay by suzipaw
Murray, Bodega Bay, a photo by suzipaw on Flickr.

Where to begin? I've had some travels since my last post.

M and I took a lovely motorcycle ride out to Bodega Bay and had lunch in Tomales a few weeks ago. We tarried after at a picturesque Catholic church, the Church of the Assumption which I think is the place I worship most--and my assumptions almost always get me in trouble. As we departed, the priest came by and chatted us up. He seemed a bit out of place. He was a very dark Indian with a thick accent, wearing a polo shirt (on a Sunday!) with the parish logo and carrying a batch of mail. He hinted strongly that we should think about getting married there at some point and seemed skeptical that we were actually already married. He tried to make his case by opening a manila envelope with information he knew was about an upcoming wedding, and indeed it was, an official decree that a woman had truly not been married before, so she was free to marry in his church. When we asked him about that, how people who had been married for years could actually not be married after all, he said the church was like a mother, trying to set things right for her children. Maybe this person had married under duress, or realized that it wasn't the right union in her heart. I wonder how often this happens these days. We stopped at Hog Island Oyster Co. on the way home so M could execute a grilled oyster project. He had a fine time with that. We experimented with a lot of other grilled items too, such as romaine lettuce, which I would highly recommend.

The following weekend we drove up the coast with the dogs to celebrate another 4th of July in Point Arena with Mom and Don. (The dogs had a very bad time of it in Santa Rosa this year--we couldn't get away on the actual 4th of July since it fell mid-week, and Roxy was cowering all day and Rex of course was barking for hours.) M had hoped to bag a hog, but no luck. Mom and I took in a weaving exhibit in Gualala. We did not go down to the wharf for the fireworks and party on Saturday--the fog came in, and we knew it would be nothing but misty colors above the bluffs. It was a pleasant weekend overall. I slept a lot and the weather away from the fog was lovely.

And then there was my week in Portland. I went up a couple of days before our annual conference there to get some quality time with family. Jim, Enid, and clan Worman came over to Lloyd and Jacque's for dinner on Friday night and we had a lovely group visit. On Saturday, we lunched at a car and craft show at the home of one of Lloyd's former colleagues which was pretty neat.

The conference was relatively fun, as these things go. At one of our company parties, I toured a submarine berthed outside the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry. I participated in my first real 5K race, jogging much of the first mile or so. I had some tasty food, Greek and one dish made to resemble a campfire with s'mores. I also learned about the little green men of Portland, akin to leprechauns. That explains so much!

I also did more of my diversity stuff during the conference. I had been working for many months with a group from Belgium--they came over and ran an activity for girls, programming robots to run an imaginary mission to Mars. That turned very well! I did a version of the lounge from the last conference, hanging out at a table marked for women's networking for three days. It went OK. Some people thought it was weird, I got some clueless guys squatting there for a while, but there were a number of women who appreciated it, so overall it was a good experience. Before I left Portland, I had one more lunch with Lloyd and Jacque before they ferried me out to the airport. They're so kind to me when I visit--it really makes for lovely bookends to the very long conference days.

I returned home on Friday afternoon and spent most of Saturday prone on the sofa finishing the second book of the Hunger Games series. Today was pretty productive on the home front. M and I are having many conversations about transforming our front and back "lawns" into a low-water/no-mow landscape, which we hope to start this fall when the rains and cooler weather come. It's going to be a big job, but I think we can do it in stages over a few months, and for once it won't disrupt us too much indoors.

In other exciting news, niece Felicia and her beau Erin are now residents of Santa Rosa! I'm very glad to have them so close by and hope we'll share many adventures.

Looking forward to another excursion soon: off to the Descendants of Julia reunion on Thursday!


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