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A brief summary of what I've been up to lately....

arcata community garden buddha 1

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Before the show, we explored Telegraph Avenue for a few hours.


moe's bookstore

We spent most of our time in this four-story independent bookstore. Jonathan Lethem used to work here.

berkeley bumper stickers

I like the "Co-Exist" one.

Seven More Pictures and Funny Story About a Squirrel )
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Sixty-five miles south of Monterey on Cape San Martin, there is a unique eco-lodging experience to be had at the Treebones Resort. Precariously perched on a ridge between the Big Sur coast and the Los Padres National Forest are sixteen yurts with wooden floors and canvas walls stretched across lattice frameworks.

yurtlucky13

We got lucky and scored a yurt with a full ocean view and a gas fireplace.

You Know You Wanna See Inside )

Blue Coast

Oct. 28th, 2007 05:43 pm
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During my recent road trip with my folks to the Big Sur area I was plagued by the question: "Why is the water so blue along the central California coast whereas on the northern California coast the water often appears to be gray or brown?"

The short answer: calmer water that doesn't stir up a lot of sediment + low phytoplankton + low chlorophyll = very clear, thus very blue water.

Vista point south of Carmel
vista pt2

One More Pic )
create_destiny: (statue head)
After San Francisco we headed south to the sand dune town of Marina, just a few miles north of the Monterey Peninsula. We checked into our hotel around 6:00 pm and rushed to the nearest beach to catch a phenomenal sunset.

marina beach at dusk

After the evening light took its final bow, we headed to a randomly selected seafood restaurant. We looked at their menu and decided the prices were too high. Next door was a Korean BBQ. We looked at their menu and decided the price was right.

None of us had ever eaten Korean food before so we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. My Mom and I played it safe and decided to split an order of "Tofu and Vegetables." My Dad ordered "Beef and Vegetables" with the beef on the side (this cracked my Mother and I up -- that's pretty much like ordering lasagna with the noodles on the side, wouldn't you say?).

Anyway, what the waitress delivered to our table will be the subject of a humorous yet cautionary tale passed down in my family through the generations for at least the next few weeks.

What came to our table was a large tray with 8-10 small white bowls, each filled with an unidentifiable "vegetable" matter. We politely thanked the waitress and waited until she was out of ear shot before we started in with the what in the hell have we got here jokes. My Mom thought it was the discarded remains from a fisherman's bait bucket. I wondered if it was the same organic sea debris we had just seen washed up on the shore.

We started forking small portions of the more edible-looking matter onto our plates. One bowl contained rubbery minnows (none for me, thank you). Another had white blubbery chunks in it. Other bowls held what looked like fried grass. I thought I recognized a form of zucchini in another.

In the spirit of adventure I tried to shirk off my narrow, white American culinary expectations and experience something new. I stabbed some of the blubbery substance onto my fork and gave it a go. It was soft and actually kind-of tasty truth be told, but I couldn't get past the fact that I didn't know what the hell it was. It could have been octopus testicles for all I knew!

We ate as much as we could. My Dad even ate some of the minnows. "Oh God, they're chewy!", he said as he ate them.

The next morning we explored the Carmel River State Beach. Here's some sea matter that looks suspiciously like our dinner at the Korean BBQ. I just now googled "Korean cuisine" and it's true! Seaweed and other algae are part of a balanced Korean diet.

seadebris2

My Dad dared my Mom to pick up this thick, ropey strand of seaweed. She was apprehensive at first, but figured, what the hell we were putting this stuff in our mouths the night before. She said it felt like a garden hose. The part she's holding on to is called the "stipe." Finally, the mystery of Michael Stipe's last name is revealed! From here on out you can think of him as "Michael Seaweed Stem." I know I will.

carmel river beach6
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Mom & Dad @ City Lights

My folks and I went on a literary pilgrimage of sorts. Our first destination was City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco's Italian-American district--- better known as "North Beach." North Beach was once a low-rent bohemian scene where Ginsburg, Burroughs, Kerouac, Neal Cassady, Gary Snyder, Ruth Weiss and other artists, musicians and free-spirits lived, wrote and played.

City Lights Bookstore was co-founded in 1953 by Lawrence Ferlinghetti. This bookstore shared the same name with Ferlinghetti's pop-culture magazine City Lights. A few years later a publishing wing was formed. In 1956 City Lights published Ginsburg's Howl and Other Poems and gained notoriety from the obcenity trial which followed.

My Dad refers to the first time he heard a reading of Howl as a pivitol point in his existence. He's also a big Kerouac fan, but made a point of telling me several times, "These guys are assholes, I hope you know that. I used to like them but they're all just a bunch of cock-sucking assholes."

Don't get me wrong, he's got no problem with guys sucking cock. I'm not sure what the problem is, but it's not that. Later he told me Kerouac's The Town and The City is his favorite.

city lights bk store1

A few years ago my Dad wrote these lines about Ginsberg: I heard Allen read (perform?) "Kaddish" in Kansas City back in the early 70s at the University of Missouri, the place was packed with neo-beats, long haired, tofu-sucking, kelp-eating, new-age hippie freaks; the type of people Jack Kerouac held in the highest disregard. The whole scene turned me off...

I could have browsed for days in City Lights Bookstore. I showed considerable restraint and acquired only a copy of Carson McCullers' The Member of the Wedding which was recommended to me by one of favorite ljers [livejournal.com profile] robin_rule and seconded by my Father. I also picked up an issue of "Cometbus." Maybe I'm a girl with low ambitions but I think you've done something pretty cool when City Lights sells copies of your zine.

These are the stairs leading to City Light's famous poetry room. Poetry books I was sorely tempted to acquire included Poems from Guantanamo, The McSweeney's Book of Poets Picking Poets and The Essential Neruda.

stairs.books

Read more... )
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GoldBluffs5

The BF and I headed to Gold Bluff Beach on the northern coast for some weekend camping. We brought his crack monkey dog and a good time was had by all. (Actually, I threw many hissy fits on the way but it was all worth it once we got to walking barefoot in the surf and tossing driftwood into the waves for the dog to fetch.) Being a mostly deep-woods camper, this was the first time I ever camped on a beach. I felt awkwardly exposed without a canopy of trees protecting me. But it was pretty damn spiffy blissing out on a campfire and hearing the sounds of the ocean churning behind us. An Elk walked up to the campground about 150 yards from where we were camped. We tried to take some pics but it was dusky and we were too beat to set up the tripod.

GoldBluffsBeach7

Two More Pics )

Yosemite

Apr. 26th, 2007 05:52 pm
create_destiny: (Bird Eye)
yosemitesign The Boyfriend and I checked out Yosemite National Park for a few days. In spite of illogical maps and a plethora of assholes, it's a beautiful place, man. Go, and bring drugs to calm you down.

YosemiteNearEntrance

Enter the Glory That is Yosemite )
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castlecragssign

Not all was lost on my Weirdest Easter Ever. The BF and I managed to do some exploring on the way home.

castlecrags2

One More Pic )
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Yesterday, [livejournal.com profile] whosplittheatom, [livejournal.com profile] metalgypsy, the Birdman and I drove up to Table Mountain to take in the beauty. The sun went down on us pretty fast. When we tried to make our way back to the car in the dark we got sucked into a watery, cow-dung bog. Fortunately, it was worth it.

*note to self---Put small flash light in lesbian explorer purse.

tablemt1

Four More Pics )
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P1000664
Location: Avenue of the Giants
Humboldt Redwoods State Park
Northern California
create_destiny: (Road To Karma)
Feather Falls Trail Sign

This eight-mile round-trip hike kicks my ass every time. Today was no exception. I'm thankful to be alive and in one piece.

Frey Creek
freycreekfalls

Four More Pics )
create_destiny: (Road To Karma)
subway cave sign1

20,000 years ago the earth cracked open in a north eastern section of what is now known as California and a river of molten lava flowed out for sixteen miles. As the lava flowed, the outer part cooled and hardened while the inner part remained fluid and continued to flow. When all was said and done, what remained was one of the world's largest known lava tubes.

subway cave entrance

You know you want to go down in this cave )
create_destiny: (Road To Karma)
lassen sign

400,000 years ago there was a volcano that erupted and almost completely destroyed itself. What's left of this volcano is called Mt. Lassen and its peak stands 10,457 feet above sea level in the northeastern part of California. It exploded big time in 1914, some of which was caught on film. It's still geothermally active: brewing, bubbling and spittin' out steam and sulpher. Some areas of Mt. Lassen are reportedly getting hotter, which means it's likely to erupt again in the future.

mt lassen from afar

Mt. Lassen is mostly quite heavenly: steep glaciated valleys, clear mountains streams and lakes surrounded by lush pine forests and fields of wildflowers.

But when the boyfriend and I went there with [livejournal.com profile] metalgypsy and [livejournal.com profile] whosplittheatom, we checked out the hellish parts...Read more... )

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