Thursday, May 31, 2012

OH Canada!!!

So, I just got the opportunity to spend a day in Victoria, BC, Canada with my two aunts and their friend. I had a blast. We went and saw beautiful  Butchart Gardens, we saw the Parliament building, and the Empress hotel. We ate some decently good food. I was pretty happy to be in Canada, and hear their slightly different than ours accents, and all the politeness.  
  You know what the most fun parts of the trip were though? First was taking BC Transit buses to Butchart Gardens. I love nothing more than going to a foreign country and trying to blend in and be as local as possible. One of my aunts has an opposite philosophy, she likes to stand out and proclaim her conservative Americanness at the absolute top of her lungs. It makes for an interesting trip when you mix those two philosophies, but if you learn to roll with it, it can be very fun. 

  Any way, so the fun part was taking the buses, and it was very fun. The bus drivers were all very helpful and polite. We had to transfer buses many times, and it was fun, we navigated it, and didn't get lost once. Part of the time we didn't even have to ask for help because I got the route down.  And, that way, we got out of tourist traps for a bit and got to see what real people are like. I love people watching, so that was great. In fact everyone agrees that our greatest moments were people watching.

  We saw some teenagers pull out their Ipod and set it up and  did some dancing on the side of the street. It was really good hip hop dancing too.  The most interesting thing though was 20 minutes of watching a couple try to parallel park. First the guy attempted. We were sitting at the bus stop across the street  on Government street right by the Parliament building.  My aunt noticed first and commented on how polite Canadians were contrast to Americans because traffic was way backed up and they were waiting for the couple to back into there spot. That is something I personally have never witnessed in this country, so, my aunt and I were amazed.  In fact, none of the four of us there had seen that before. 

  Well, Kudos to the Canadians on their patience with Parallel parkers, and for parallel parking correctly and not going in forward.  That patience lasted for about two minutes. That's a very long time. Traffic was very backed up. Then they gave up and drove around the man. Yes, the man was driving, trying and failing to parallel park. He had made about four attempts at that point.  
  Finally working with a clear street, the man made a few more attempts. FAIL. He wound up parked on the curb. So he went back and forth for another five minutes trying to get off the curb, but remain parallel parked.  Seven minutes later, his girlfriend/ wife/ significant other?  had finished paying for parking and was tired of trying to direct him how to park, so she made him switch places. 
  This is the point where I am nice to the couple and say, it was a large pick up truck, and I can understand it would be difficult to park it. Points to you for trying.  So the woman trades places with the man. Immediately she shows much more promise at getting it done right. she pulled forward even with the car in front and backed it. First attempt looked like it was going to succeed, right up to the point where she should have turned sharply to the right, and she turned left. After four tries, she was in and was almost successfully parked except she was about a foot from the curb. 

  That is where our people watching ended, and our bus pulled up and we didn't get to see if they ever got parked. Very determined people, I am sure one of them eventually succeeded or gave up and called it good.  they probably had to pay for another hour of parking at that point though. 

 The rest of my trip consisted of me buying loads of candy. I love Canadian candy. way better than American candy. Smarties, Lion bars, Aeros, and of course those hard maple syrup candies. I got a few bags of those. I also got some maple syrup chocolates, and this morning after we all got breakfast at our hotel, We got some packets of Canadian peanut butter that was very tasty and creamy, thank you Kraft. mmm. And of course, I got me some maple syrup.  It was a very pleasant trip, and I kind of wanted to stay in Canada, right until that time I crossed the Hood Canal Bridge, into Kitsap County. Looking around, I though, Wow!!! I get to live here!!! OK, I am happy with that. Wheres my dog?!!!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Motorcycles make me really happy

Today, as I was  preparing to "disembark" the ferry as a foot passenger, I looked down below me and saw a lone chopper at the front of the boat.  It made me sad, usually there are a lot of bikes all nestled together at the front of the boat. The owner of the bike soon came and started putting on his gloves and his helmet. He looked pretty cool. But I was sad to not see more motorcycles. Its a somewhat rainy day, but even in the winter there are more than one motorcyclist. I was puzzled as to where they had all gone.  There weren't as many pedal bikes as usual either, or so it seemed. 

 Then the boat started to dock, and the pedal bikes crawled out of the wood work , or would it be Iron work? of the boat.  Soon they had surrounded the motorcycle, somehow making him look far less cool. Perhaps it was all the spandex bicycle shorts?  

Then the boat tied off  and the motorcycle fired up. Suddenly he was not alone, crawling up from the spaces between the cars ( I don't know how that is possible, they are some pretty tight spaces) were a few more motorcycles. and the roar began to grow, and my heart began to leap, and a smile hit my face.  The ferry worker sent off the pedal bikes,  and it was tour De Bainbridge, and then when they had gotten a sizable lead, he cranked his hand like he was sending his own chopper out into the world and shouted "motorcycles." it wasn't like anyone could hear him on a motorcycle, but the lone front man, now surrounded by a handful of others and scooter saw the hand motion and took off.  As I watched them pull out off the boat like  the  Ferries Angles,  all I could think was one phrase  "That is so bad a**"  and it was. 

In a month I plan to take a motorcycle course, get my licence, and maybe in a year I can get a bike. I will borrow one when I go visit my family in Utah, and go on a ride with my pops. But as I looked down at that gang of bikes leaving the ferry, I felt that very soon, I would be a much bigger part of something very cool. Maybe one day, I will even drive my bike off the ferry when i see the signal flash. Until then, I am looking forward to my class, and to some rides with my dad.  This morning I talked about the class and motorcycles with my mom, she said it then and there "you are a girl after your dads heart" well, let it be written, let it be true, when it comes to motorcycles, yes, I am a daddy's girl. 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Running is awesome!!!

I used to absolutely hate running, till about a year and a half ago when I met Julie and Adrian, who love running.  They got me to try it a bit more, and then once I got started I was hooked.  Now, If I have to go more than a few days without running because my schedule is tight it makes me feel like something is missing, and I feel tired and not as good. Today It was sunny and beautiful. I only had time for a half mile sprint before the sun set and it was too dark to be out on my pot hole filled road, But that half a mile was sure the best half mile I have had in a while. I am glad me and my dog got to go for a run. By the way, If you go running with a Jack Russell Terrier,  don't expect to be able to out run him, unless he has seen a rabbit in a bush that he wants to go hunt and stock, its just not going to happen.  

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Sounders Games are as Electric as Their Green Jerseys

As I borded the Bainbridge ferry tonight sporting my Real Salt Lake jersey, I was well aware that I was very much in a sea of green and blue, and that is how it continued through the night. I would estimate that about 99% of the ferry passengers on the boats I took both to and from Seattle tonight were full of Sounders fans, each one decked out in a jersey or a jacket, sporting a Sounders scarf of one shade or another  of blue, or grey and electric green. 
  I went with a friend. She was also sporting a jersey, a temporary sounders tatoo on her cheek, and a scarf. As we left the ferry and followed the masses to the stadium it was over whelming, and then we entered and the vuvuzelas were blaring before the match had begun. People had giant green and blue flags they were waving,  and green crate paper streemers flowed constantly from the heavens. I turned to my friend and said, who ever wins,  how ever many goals are scored, its not going to matter, this will be one of the greatest sporting events of our lives. She agreed. It was both of our first soccer games. 
  As the  Game began there was a reverance in an otherwise crazy crowd, everyone was invited to sing along with the national anthem. Everyone was a part of this game. We owned it, and we were part of it, and it was amazing. As the players walked out on the fields all the Sounders fans were asked to raise their scarfs until the kick off was complete. It was an exciting match. Pretty evenly matched and supper full of action, fouls, a yellow  card, One goal- Which I missed because I was shopping for Sounder gear- scored by Real Salt Lake. Very sad to miss it, but there was a sale, and we were only five minutes late coming back from half time!! 
 One thing I love about soccer, is you can pretty much know exactly how long it will go, give or take 5-10 minutes for stoppage time. Something I hate about american sports like basketball, football, and baseball is that the time outs can strech ten minutes left into a half hour or more, or in the case of baseball, you just never know when it will end, it can go on forever.  Honestly, if you have never been to a Sounders game, I recomend it, the atmosphere in that stadium is magical. When we left, some people were a little drunk, and mad that they had lost, but most the people were so happy with having watched the game and been part of the magic, that their sorrow was  not  promenantly displayed . Man, I love this game. 
  In other news, Pottermore is supper awesome, just got my wand and was sorted. I got to choose between gryfindor and RavenClaw, I chose Gryfindor.  Check it out.  Now its time for bed. I have to give a talk in the singles ward on marriage tomorrow. I am going to need a lot of sleep for that. Tough subject.  

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

ten cookies later.....

Even though I saw no violence, and no protesters myself today, the fact that my building had to be closed and all of us sent home for the day early had an impact on me. these situations always do, though I dont really like to say it. Yes, I was working in Seattle, just blocks from the protesters smashing in windows at the federal court house, and yes, I left before they reached my building. I went out during when the protests were going on and certain rouge elements were starting violence, (as I am sure most the protesters were probably peaceful and it was a few bad eggs causing ridiculous trouble for everyone else), but I just went and walked obliviously around Pikes place market on my lunch break. It was quiet, too quiet, for this time of year really, so now that I think of it, and of course there was a greater police and security presence, but that was no surprise to me. I heard talk from security gards about the violence from blocks away as I came back to work, and some talk of it coming our way, but I never thought that they would actually close the building and send us home. So when that did happened, I was shocked,  and then I went home, and passed into the calm peace of Bainbridge island and Kitsap county. Out of sight out of mind, I thought, right up until I finished my tenth girl scout cookie. Then I realized I was actually still a bit upset. I dont like violence. I dont like big shows of disrespect to your fellow man, no matter how much you dislike governments, or corporations, its the little people, the shop owners, the workers, the costomers just like you and me that these people actually hurt, and cost money, and I dont think they ever realize that, and it makes me mad, and sad,  and it makes me eat more cookies than I should. and that is all I have to say about "May Day 2012" in Seattle.