I Forgot June Was Hot 18 June 2001

Woo hoo, my first official day of sabbatical! A scheduled 8am visit by the Terminix guy to spray for fleas meant we had to be up at 6:45—two hours before I'd normally get up for work. I took Elmo & Annie to the vet to be boarded for the day, returned The Shop Around the Corner to the video store, got a coffee, and then headed to Stanford Shopping Center to look for a dress.

I found one in my first hour of looking, to my shock, spent another hour or so looking for shoes, and then decided that I'd had enough walking around the mall. My feet were starting to hurt (I'd worn high-heeled slides so I could see what they'd look like with the dresses). I figured the perfect solution to my tired feet (and just plain sleepy rest of me) was to get a pedicure and manicure. I figured I could sleep in the chair.

I drove to University Avenue and parked on Emerson, since that was relatively near the Whole Foods (quick & healthy lunch), and because I couldn't remember how far down University the salon was. Turned out that Whole Foods was farther away from the lot than I remembered, and the salon was WAY farther down University than I had guessed. After walking in a giant square, my feet were killing me.

I didn't sleep in the chair during the pedicure, but I did almost doze off during the manicure. After paying the manicurist, my hands and feed looked great, but my feet apparently had had time to think about how sore they were. After half a block, I took off the shoes and tried to go barefoot... and promptly burned my feet on the scorching pavement.

Did I mention it was in the 90s today? One of the things I didn't realize about having time off in the middle of the summer is that I'd likely be HOT! I'm used to sitting in an air-condiitioned office during times of peak heat, so this was a new one on me. Of course, on the way to the mall this morning my air distribution knob (the one that changes the airflow from defrost to face to feet) snapped, and the vent was stuck in the defrost position. This meant that it took at least 10 minutes to cool the car to a reasonable temperature.

I actually have more to say about what I did today, but it's 2am, and I keep dozing off. I have to get up early again tomorrow to take the car into the shop to get the knob fixed.

Sleeping in Public 19 June 2001

Can you get arrested for sleeping in public? I hope not, because it seemed I was dozing off everywhere today (though luckily not behind the wheel).

I got up at 7am to take my car into the shop; I left it at the dealer at 8:15 with the intention of walking to downtown Burlingame for a coffee (and some exercise). I ended up walking farther than I'd intended (to the Bank of America on El Camino) when I realized I didn't have any cash with which to buy coffee or other breakfast items. It seemed that with each step I got slower and slower, rather than more invigorated—and it wasn't even hot yet!—so after I got the money I just bought a bottled water at Mollie Stone's and walked back to the dealership.

I copped a squat on the leather couch in the showroom, read an article in the Chronicle about a huge forest fire that's burning a few miles east of my house in Truckee, and then promptly fell asleep. I know I was asleep because I kept doing that airplane thing where no matter how hard you try to keep your head upright, it keeps sliding down to rest on your shoulder. I woke up for good when the service guy came out to tell the woman sitting next to me that her car was ready. Mine was too, a few minutes later.

I managed to get the car fixed with an hour to spare before I had to leave for my massage. I went to my apartment in the city, packed another box worth of stuff, called to disconnect the power, phone, and cable and arrange for carpet and apartment cleaning, and sold all my Cisco stock on E*TRADE. (Time to face facts: it's not gonna go back up anytime soon, and I need the cash now.) No time to take a nap—I figured I'd just get to bed early.

My body obviously had other ideas, because I fell asleep on the massage table. The good news is that falling asleep probably helped my muscles relax more; I left feeling like a wet noodle. Marie-Pierre really worked on my lower back, too, so hopefully whatever's out will be able to go back in on its own.

After the massage it was back to the apartment for more packing, then to Hillsdale mall to for a guerilla shopping expedition (go in knowing exactly what you want, buy it, exit within 15 minutes), next to AAA to pick up a New York TourBook and map, and finally to the allergist's office to get a shot. I picked up Al's new shirt at the dry cleaners on the way home, and then I bopped over to Safeway to buy supplies for the first official Act of Organization of my sabbatical: organizing all the snacks in the glovebox.

Al & I both suffer from low blood sugar, which can cause us to completely wig out when we're hungry, so to keep us sane—and to keep emergency stops at Taco Bell to a minimum, since they tend to make us late for things—we've stocked the glove box of my car with snacks. They're mostly Al-friendly things like breadsticks and beef jerky, but there are a couple Odwalla and CLIF bars in there for me, too. It was getting a lap full of beef jerky when I was trying to pull out one of those Odwalla bars that prompted me to move organizing the the snacks to the top of my to-do list.

I bought several different sizes of Gladlock bags at the Safeway (plus some Doritos, since the supply in the glovebox had dwindled), drove home, and started organizing. I'm now happy to report that not only do the Doritos and the pretzel nibs have their own bags, but the assorted Taco Bell hot sauce packets and a single packet of a generic brand of ketchup are all together at last in a quart size bag in the passenger door.

I kinda can't believe I didn't take a nap after that, but it seemed that sleeping at home—where sleep is appropriate—wasn't on the agenda today. Instead I did all the chores we usually do at midnight (taking the trash out, vacuuming, washing dishes, etc.) in hopes that I could get to bed earlier if the chores were done when we got back from dinner.

Dinner, btw, was sushi at Satsuma's, in celebration of Al's last day at @Home. It's the end of an era, and the start of a new one. I guess it's appropriate that his colleagues put candles on his going away cake, since in a way it was a birth day.

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Just Plain Sleeping 20 June 2001

[I'm actually writing about Wednesday's activities on Thursday the 21st, mainly because I fell asleep before I could make my journal entry last night.]

Al & I got up at 4am to make a 6:30am flight out of San Jose (to Albany, NY, for his brother's wedding). Neither of us was particularly functional at that hour, but we managed to make it to the airport without incident. The upgrade to first class came through, so we got larger seats to sleep in. Sleep was, after all, the primary thought in our heads when we got on the plane.

We slept pretty much the whole way to Chicago, then had to wake up enough to run from Concourse B to Concourse C to catch our connecting flight. I think I stayed awake for most of the second flight, but Al slept for a while. We arrived in overcast but stiflingly hot Albany at around 4:30pm. I spotted a girl with a really cute haircut at the airport, and when she ended up near us at the rental car counter, I asked if I could take a picture of it to show my hairdresser. She agreed on the condition that her friends could be in the photo too. I said sure.

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After taking the photos, we picked up our rented minivan (Al loves them, for some reason), and headed to Cooperstown. It was a lovely scenic drive through cow country to Lake Otsego, beside which stands the Hickory Grove Motor Inn, our home for the evening. It was about 6pm, so I proposed that we take a walk by the lake, eat a small dinner if we were hungry after the walk, and then go to bed. Al said that he couldn't do anything until he had a nap. I said I'd rather stay up until at least 8pm, because I was afraid if I went to sleep I'd stay asleep until midnight.

Al was so tired he couldn't move, however, so we laid down. I woke up at 7pm to announce the time and ask Al if he wanted to take a walk or keep on sleeping, and he chose option B. We woke up at midnight, as predicted, and decided to watch a little TV. Al got up and asked if he could close the window; I said, "yeah, I don't want to wake up the neighbors anyway...", at which point Al proceeded to sneeze loudly *out* the window, so that idea was blown. Of course, I compounded the problem by laughing hysterically.

We watched TV til about two, and then fell asleep again. I checked my watch at 6:37am, shouted "yea!" (as in "we made it to morning!"), and promptly fell back to sleep until 8:09. Sleep, how do I love thee? Let me count the sheep...

Elsewhere, It Rains in Summer 21 June 2001

I've gotten so used to Northern California weather that I'd forgotten that in other places, it's as likely as not to rain in the summer. Today was just such a rainy day in central New York State.

It started off just cloudy like yesterday, only much cooler. As Al & I drove to the center of Cooperstown, it started to sprinkle. Jeepers, I didn't even bring a jacket, much less an umbrella! I was thinking that a couple long-sleeved shirts would be enough to cover me should one day be cooler, and I wasn't even wearing one of those. Instead, I was shivering in my SpongeBob t-shirt.

We parked midway down Main Street and had breakfast at the Doubleday Cafe (named for Doubleday Field, the birthplace of baseball, which was just behind the cafe). Since we slept through dinner last night, I was ready for the eggs, toast, and hot chocolate.

After breakfast we walked back past the car and on to the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum. I remember going there with my parents, sister, and cousin when I was a kid (maybe 13 or 14?), but I didn't recognize the building when I saw it this time, and few of the exhibits seemed familiar, either. It was fun to see it with Al, who's a big baseball fan. I got a new Red Sox cap (either my hair got bigger or my head did, because my old one doesn't fit anymore) and a magnet for Jake and Mattie, and I got to see the exhibit on the AAGPBL (as featured in the movie A League of Their Own). I was a little disappointed that it wasn't larger, as shown in the movie, but it was pretty interesting. The exhibit on the negro leagues was also really fascinating.

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After spending a couple hours in Cooperstown, we hit the road again and headed for Glens Falls, where we are now. It sprinkled on and off most of the way, but about 15 minutes from Glens Falls, the sprinkles became a downpour. Scary to drive in. The intensity of the rain has varied from light to heavy since we arrived, but it hasn't stopped. We bought an umbrella at the Eckerd Drugs next door to our hotel (the Queensbury), so at least we won't get drenched when we go outside.

We had a late lunch at a local pizzeria, came back and watched some TV and checked e-mail, went back to the Eckerd for water and batteries (the ones in the digital camera died), and then went for a swim in the hotel pool. I was kind of bummed that the rain denied us a walk around downtown (I like to explore new places on foot, and I could use the extra exercise), but the dip in the pool was nice. It gave Al & me a chance to practice our synchronized swimming moves. We're really getting good!

Adventures on Route 9N 22 June 2001

Al & I got up early again this morning, this time to drive from Glens Falls up to Bolton Landing on Lake George. We're staying at The Sagamore, home base for the Yale-Cho wedding. Right now Al's out hosting the bachelor party; earlier, we attended the rehearsal at St. James' Episcopal Church in Lake George Village, followed by the rehearsal dinner at the Sagamore Golf Club Grill. I ate too much swordfish and now feel overstuffed. Bleah. I really should spend my sabbatical trying to eat better (and less).

Al had a golf date with his father and brother this morning, so I had four hours to kill. I spent them scoping out the location of the church and trying to find somewhere to go shopping. I asked at the front desk for a mall or a good bookstore, and I was directed to the outlet shops down Route 9N.

I'm not really an outlet mall person; they kinda creep me out a little. When I finally came upon the first batch of stores (I realized a bit later that they were in clusters, rather than all together), I parked in front of the Levi's outlet for a minute, but couldn't bring myself to go in. Instead, I opened the New York AAA TourBook and checked the listing for Glens Falls on the off-chance it would list shopping options.

To my surprise, it did. There was apparently a place called Aviation Mall at the next exit down, though I was a little skeptical that it would be any more promising than the outlet stores when I read that its major stores included Sears and JC Penney. I drove down there anyway, but my suspicion proved correct: the place reminded me of Cranberry Mall in Westminster, MD, which has a Bible World but no Gap. Pretty depressing.

I stopped in a skateboarding shop and bought a Spitfire wheels t-shirt, mainly because that's the name of the women's traveling hockey team I'm playing on (we use the Spitfire Wheels logo as our mascot), but that's about it. The one bookstore had a really limited selection, and mall record stores aren't exactly known for their extensive classical collections (though I did look). I started to wonder: am I a snob? Do I prefer to pay more for things than less? I don't think so, because Stanford Mall creeps me out in the other direction. I need a nice, middle-of-the-road place: Nordstrom, not Neiman-Marcus.

Anyway, I finally had to get out of the gloom of Aviation Mall, so I headed back up 9N, where I thought I might have seen a Gap Outlet. (At least they'd have merchandise I would actually be interested in, I thought.) I found it, and they did—a pair of boy-cut twill pants. From there I continued up route 9N to the Sagamore, where I was to meet Al at 2:00pm. It was around 1, and I figured if I could get back there by 1:30, I'd have time to paint my nails in the parking lot. I don't paint my nails regularly as I was doing last year, but I wanted them to look nice for the wedding tomorrow.

In all, I went up and down route 9N at least 7 times today, including the trips to the rehearsal and to take Mr. Shin back to his hotel. Luckily the part from Exit 22 to the Sagamore is a pleasant drive, with lots of resort hotel signs new and old to look at. Reminds me of the drive up Hunter mountain in the Catskills when I was a kid.

Wedding Day 23 June 2001

I actually don't have much to say about today, except that it was taken up with wedding activities. I only cried twice: once when Al first emerged from the alcove next to the altar, and again when we were all asked to recite the Lord's Prayer. It was a moving ceremony.

It rained all day, but that didn't really ruin anything; I'm just tired of the dampness. I'm ready to get back to Calfornia's bone-dry climate. Having said that, I'm sad that Al & I didn't arrange to stay longer. I'd really like to show him some of the places mom and dad showed me on the tours we took of their personal landmarks (mom's are in Rochester, dad's are in Hunter).

Anyway, I really want to make this brief and go to sleep, so I'll close with a few photos from today.

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Donut Girl 24 June 2001

Al & I hit the road this morning, headed for Albany airport and thence to San Jose (via Washington, DC). We stopped at the little deli at the end of Sagamore Road for a delicious slice of breakfast pizza and a copy of the Sunday New York Times, and then headed down Route 9N for the last time.

When we got to I-87, Al said, "if we see a Dunkin Donuts, can we stop?" Well OF COURSE! As if he had to ask. Really. We finally spotted one around exit 8 or 9 (I can't remember which), cheered loudly when it turned out to be an actual store and not just part of a gas station, and whipped into a parking spot.

I was a little disappointed to see that they were out of my favorite variety, the Vanilla Kreme, but the Chocolate Kreme ones appeared to be fresh (they had the telltale sag of a freshly-made-and-filled donut), so I asked for one of those. I also got one of the Manager's Specials, a white frosted raised donut with chocolate jimmies, and, as a backup in case the foofy donuts were somewhat stale as they had been at the last DD we visited, a glazed chocolate cake donut.

I took a bite of the frosted donut while the Dunkin Donuts girl was in the back getting Al an iced coffee, and my hopes started to rise. It was AMAZINGLY fresh. I finished that donut in the parking lot, drove around the lot in the wrong direction a couple times trying to find an exit that didn't force me to turn right (unsuccessfully), and finally made it back to the Northway. We drove for a couple miles before I decided to see if the Chocolate Kreme donut was as fresh as the white frosted one.

I took one bite and immediately let out a moan of joy. Al started laughing and asked if I'd like to be alone with my donut. I really should have pulled over, because my eyes were rolling back in my head rather than staying focused ahead. Al decided he had to capture the moment, so he fished out my digital camera and started snapping action shots. The one below is his favorite, because I'm so obviously not watching the road. :)

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