plumbob78: (Ecchi Elder)
I've already written some about Sakura-con. The highlight of this con was their anime music video (AMV) room, which was really well done. Pictures of cosplayers can be found here. After this trip I have decide that the big cons (like Otakon and Sakura-con) are definitely the way to go. There are more people and more stuff, but they feel less crowded than the smaller hotel-based cons. I may still go to Anime USA, especially if my friend Mary Jane is going, but the big con experience is definitely more enjoyable. I have to find another one to try sometime.

Tokyo was spectacular! I must go back soon. I didn't have a lot of time to wander around, because it was a business trip, but I did get to see Shibuya. I wanted to hit Akihabara, but it didn't work out. The few pictures I took during the trip are located here.One caveat, the photos of the cookies were taken in Seattle on Saturday Night. That's not the table in my awesome Japanese Hotel, but in the crappy airport Ramada. What to say about Tokyo...

Crowded. I don't think Americans know the meaning of the word. We went to Shibuya in the morning on Friday and I have never seen so many people. Leaving the metro, it was like two rivers of people in the mall that gave access to the station. And everyone was going to or from the metro, because the shops weren't open yet. Somehow we got on the wrong side, going against the stream. My dash across the hall, accomplished without bumping into anyone was a spectacular feat. The masses of people waiting to cross at intersections was like nothing I've ever seen. Think Manhattan and double it. It was a sight to behold.

Amazingly, watching anime prepared me more for this trip than I ever would have imagined. Of the three of us who went, I knew the most Japanese, despite one guy having been there before. I recognized food items from shows (Rice balls from School Rumble, bread filled with yummy stuff from Azumanga Daioh, and a type of fish cake from Black Heaven). I felt a  little embarrassed explaining my anime-viewing habits are the reason I know some Japanese (everything I know I learned from anime and Shogun). Those guys probably think I'm nuts. Still I think I was a little more savvy than somebody who might learn about American Culture from American cartoons.

I didn't eat as much Japanese food as I would have liked. We had Japanese for lunch most days because of where we were (mmm eel over rice), but the guys I was with weren't huge Japanese fans, and I stuck with the group. Korean barbecue one night. Hamburgers another (this I was actually into because I wanted to see what a Japanese "authentic American hamburger" would be like). God those hamburgers were great. One night we were treated to dinner, which was a great Japanese meal, with LOTS of Sapporo beer to wash it down, as well as some other yummy J-booze. That was where I had to explain my language prowess. First to "This is your first trip to Japan, but... I think you have some experience with the Japanese language." And later to a somewhat incredulous "Why you speak Japanese?" I think this might have been because I was the one of the three who put forth the most effort. I wanted to try some rice balls, but I was never hungry when I saw them in the convenience stores. Didn't eat any sushi until the day I left. There was a sushi place near my gate at Narita, so I stopped there for lunch. The other option was McDonalds, which I didn't want. The sushi was VERY good. Had some nice sak√©, too. 

It was fairly easy to get around Tokyo as an American with minimal Japanese skills. The metro was very easy.

Efficiency. Everything ran very well. The shuttle to and from the airport was one of the most well run systems I've ever seen. Ticketing, taking luggage, boarding passengers. You would have to be an idiot to get on the wrong bus or lose your luggage.

Everyone was very friendly. The way people said "good morning" and "thank you," it wasn't like they were just saying it, more like singing it. I don't know whether this is just something about the language that they always do it this way, or whether it was because I was mainly interacting with staff at businesses and they were dealing with a customer. Customer service, by the way, was excellent over there.

I kinda wish I didn't have to come back.

"Yes, Mr. PlumBob. It came through." Those word were music to my ears leaving Tokyo. I used some of my miles to upgrade and flew business class from Tokyo to San Francisco, and First class from SF to Seattle.  Business class is nice! I was actually able to sleep for most of the flight to the States, despite not being totally exhausted.

When I got back to Seattle, the first thing I did after twelve hours on planes was, of course, rent a car and go look at planes. The museum of flight is most excellent and I recommend it if your ever in Seattle. Pics here. That night I grabbed dinner at a red Robin and went to bed early. Got out of Seattle earlier than expected, after a bit of a scare (my original flight was canceled; thank God I got to the airport three hours early). After business class the day before, coach was doubly horrible. Middle seats all the way back to DC, too. Landed here around 11. Took today off work. Slept LOTS. Eleven days of running around must have taken a greater toll on me than I had realized.  But it was a great experience. I loved it. I want to go back to Japan so bad. I need to get off my ass and renew my passport.
plumbob78: (Default)
It's really happening now. I have booked flights and a hotel room.

Good Stuff

Sep. 1st, 2008 09:58 pm
plumbob78: (Sosuke)
This weekend was pretty good. Hppy hour with work people Friday night. Games on Saturday. Dinner out and Wii at John and Mollie's on Sunday. Games today.

Plowing through Cowboy Bebop. Have a two more series a short OVA and two movies to watch. Then I'm out. Time to get more on the list. But I'm gonna try to stretch my remaining anime out because I just spent a heap on that lens. Will probably try to read some books to pass anime-free time. Have decided on vacation in October. Destination currently unknown. Suggestions welcome. I want want scads of culture (museums, galleries, etc.) and nice walks. Suggestions welcome.

This was the best AMV I saw at Otakon this year:

I'm back

Aug. 11th, 2008 07:20 pm
plumbob78: (Sosuke)
I went to Otakon in Baltimore this weekend. Wen with my friend Mary Jane from work:
MJ dressed up
I didn't dress up though.

It was a good convention. Saw the new volume of the Hellsing: Ultimate OVA, which was awesome. Went to some good panels. Saw lots of great costumes. LOTS of Hellsing people:
Vampires and Nazis!


I also got a video of one of the folks portraying Anderson fighting one of the folks playing Alucard


I saw a group of girls dressed as Gunslinger Girl characters, which was cool. And a Chise from Saikano, which was both cool and unexpected. Photos of them on my flickr also. I bought a great big die-cast Tachikoma. I saw a figure I wanted to buy, but decided to hold off and buy it online when I had a credit card again.

Enjoyed the weekend very much.

I'm back

Jul. 24th, 2008 08:56 pm
plumbob78: (Default)
Only for two days, though.

Trip was good. Flights were fine. Should not have listened to Death Cab for Cutie all the way home, though. Was left feeling..."less than positive."

I think maybe I will take a long walk on Saturday.
plumbob78: (On the Job)
I knew this trip would be better than my last when my traveling companion told me he abhors when people try to save money on TDY's by eating at shifty restaurants. I have a feeling I'm going to enjoy the next few days.
plumbob78: (Default)
Friday night I have dinner with jduffy1535 and baranoouji at Bangkok 54. Then we went back to their place and hung out with becca5 and damian792. It was pretty good, but I left early. baranoouji seemed to not be feeling well, and I don't like hanging around people's house when they aren't feeling 100%.

Saturday I woke up fairly early, paid some bills, and had lunch at Arby's. I went to Anime Pavilion to try and get the last Fullmetal Alchemist box set, but they didn't have it in yet. The guy said it should be in today or tomorrow. I cam home and did a lot of laundry, because I had no clean non-work clothes. Then I packed quickly and hit the road for Virginia Beach and palliddreamer's St. Patrick's day party. It was slow going down almost to Spotsylvania county, but after that I made pretty good time. The party was lots of fun, despite me being the only William and Mary person there besides Mike There were a lot of people there and everyone seemed to be having a real good time. I met a few interesting people, including some of Mike's fencing buddies. I had four or five Jell-o shots, I don't think I'd had one of those in like 8 years. It brought back memories. I played what I think was Halo 3, and even managed to kill some people. I did not get on of Rock Band, though. I got good and drunk and slept on the couch.

The next morning, I woke up,  took a shower and rolled out for the trip home. It was slow getting out of VA Beach, because there was some sort of marathon going on. And once I got out of the city, traffic was horrifically slow up to the Hampton Roads bridge tunnel. It took me two hours from Mike's house to that point. After that things were pretty OK, though. I made a stop in Williamsburg, got lunch at Paul's deli, and wandered around the William and Mary campus for a while. Good God, a lot has changed since I was there last (6 years ago). They've built and extension onto the front of Small Hall (physics building), and are currently making Millington (bio) and Rogers (chemistry) into an "Integrated Science Center". I saw the two new dormitories they built on part of Barksdale Field, where people use to sunbathe. I guess the ROTC kids won't be flying out of there in helicopters anymore. Too bad; it was funny seeing spectators papers get blown all over the place that one time. They're also building a new home for the business school on that old gravel parking lot by the Matoaka woods, across the street from Morton (government building). I went into the renovated Swem library (last time I only saw it from the outside). The remodel is AMAZING. The stacks no longer look like a Soviet record warehouse. Before, I wouldn't have been surprised to find KGB torture records in there. Now it actually seems like a pleasant place to study. I also walked through Blair Hall (the history building, where I had most of my classes). It looks the same as it always did, but it was pretty ice before, so that's no surprise. I'm a little disappointed that there is some narcissistic ancestor-worship shrine to the Tyler family next to it now. I don't mind so much the busts of the historically significant Tylers  (John the 18th Governor of Virginia, John the President, and Lyon the 17th President of the College), but the list of their descendants who attended the College down the years including some kid who graduated in 2001 just rubbed me the wrong way. Almost in the same way the renaming of Tercentenary Hall to McGlothlin-Street Hall bothered me. But in spite of all the changes, the old school still felt like home.

Apparently the Cheese Shop no longer exists. It's former space is now occupied by something called the "Blue Talon Bistro," so I guess bread ends and house dressing are a thing of the past. If you want them, you'll have to make do with sturmadler's approximation. The old drug store is a Williams-Sonoma now. But the toy shop is still there in Merchant's Square. My last stop in Williamsburg was the campus shop, where I got a W&M hoodie, since I had very little school pride gear.

The rest of the drive up was uneventful, save for a few infuriating moments when I found myself having to brake to a dead stop in the left lane of I-95 for no discernible reason. I made it home around 6 o'clock. I thought about getting dinner, but was really too tired to go out anywhere. So I just dicked around on the internet for a while, and went to bed at around 10:30.

I took today off. I woke up at around 9 o'clock today. After the usual start-of-day preparations, I went out, had breakfast, bought cigarettes and a quart of milk and came home. Tom and Jules have a 1 o'clock reservation at the Four Provinces. baranoouji are going to that. I need to call her and figure out when we are leaving.

This was a good weekend. I'm really glad I went to that party. There weren't a lot of friends there, but it was nice to be around different people.
plumbob78: (Kickin' Back)
I spent last week in St. Louis, Missouri for a working group/conference. St. Louis seems like a nice place, although it's awful quiet for being a major city. The town just doesn't have that big city vibrancy you find in New York, or even here in DC.

Got to StL on Monday, went into the office and caught up on e-mails, got the particulars on an unrelated meeting I needed to have with some folks out there, as well as another meeting I need to attend tomorrow. Then checked into the hotel. My coworker and I over to the Gateway Arch, which was only a block away. Got a few pictures, which I will post to flickr when I am less lazy. Wandered around the city for a while and got dinner.

Tuesday the working group started. I gave my presentation. It was OK. I think I may have rushed through it a little, but this may just be my self-critical nature overreacting, as it was well received by the audience. That night there was a "no-host" (i.e. "our cheap-ass agency won't give us money to host you") social at a blues club. I had a good steak and listened to some good music. Also five beers. I left early (9:30) because the other folks in my hotel were also leaving, and I had no clue about the safety of walking the St. Louis streets at night. Apparently I had nothing to worry about, but the observed lack of people walking around the previous night made me cautious. On my return to the hotel, I went to the bar in the connected restaurant and stayed until  they closed at 11:30. The bartender there was beautiful. She had blonde hair and eyeglasses.

Wednesday after the conference let out, my coworker and two other guys in our hotel went to this microbrewery/restaurant in LaClede's Landing. I had buffalo meatloaf. It was good, as was the potato/onion hash that came with it. After dinner I went back to that bar at the hotel, drank more beer and looked at the bartender all night. A 50-something lady from Kansas City decided I was sad and needed comforting. She bought me a beer and was constantly trying to talk to me. Reassurances that though I'm at a difficult time in my life, everything is going to be OK.  "There's somebody out there for you," was another theme. She really annoyed the piss out of me. Before she left, she gave me a variation on a hug that entailed wrapping her arm around y neck and shaking me. I tried to be polite and wished she would go away.  The bartender said she thought the lady wanted to kiss me. I shuddered.  Bartender also opined the lady might be mentally unstable. I'm not qualified to make such a determination myself. But I guess a bartender is almost a psychiatrist so we'll take her word for it.

Thursday the conference lasted only half the day. While everyone else went for lunch and a tour of the Anheuser Busch brewery, I went to another meeting, got lunch from the cafeteria and worked the rest of the day. That night, we had dinner at the home of some co-workers who'd transfered to StL last year. After returning to the hotel, I spent my last night in StL hanging out in the bar. That bartender really was lovely. I told her so.

Flew home on Friday. Went out to dinner with jduffy1535 (livejournal) and baranoouji (livejournal). We went to Ray's the Steaks. There was a 2.5-hour wait so we parked the car and went to bars. I had a martini and two gin-and-tonics. When we got back to the restaurant, they were running behind, so we sat on their porch to wait and chatted for a while. I had a glass of red wine while waiting. When we were seated, we ordered a bottle of wine for the table (we were going to do glasses, but changed our minds at the last minute). Because we were seated late, they gave us soup (seafood bisque) for free. I had a green salad and an onglet (hanger steak). That steak was damn good. I also drank most of the bottle of wine, because my friends were driving and already tipsy, respectively. So yeah, I was pretty well tanked by the end of the night.

Yesterday I woke up around seven, popped 4 ibuprofen and drank a lot of water. I drove out o Sterling and had a look at the Mini Cooper. It seem like a delightful little car. I don't even have to move the seat all the way back to fit in it. I can sit comfortably in the car and still fold down both rear seats. The rear visibility isn;t the best, because the car (and therefore the rear window) is very small, but I think I could get used to it. I didn't take one for a test-drive, because I'm not yet at that stage in my car search, yet, but it's definitely still on my list of possibilities. Yesterday evening I went tout with friend to eat wings and watch the Pats game. They beat Jacksonville, so I am still happy. Today I think I will go to John and Molly's house to watch the Giants game. Tomorrow real work starts again.

Pre-flight

Jan. 6th, 2008 09:22 pm
plumbob78: (Default)
I woke up at (:30 today, which is pretty impressive given I went to bed at 3:30. Did laundry. Got lunch, swung by one of my offices to check some travel stuff because I had a nagging feeling something might be fouled up. Looks like everything is squared away though. Chatted with MJ at the office for a while.

Came home screwed around on the internet, packed, screwed around some more. Got dinner. Am now having some last minute internet fun and drinking sprite. Bed soon. Plane leaves 8:25 AM. Must wake up early. Yuk.
plumbob78: (Vanishing Pint)
Tonight I went out and played pool with Tom, the three John's, Molly and Pranas. It was good times. I payed for everything because I wanted to share my joy over my promotion. Spending money on others makes me happy.

Tomorrow night I hope to get together with some of my other dearest friends.

Over the past few days I watched Madlax. I finished it this afternoon. I really enjoyed that series. It had girls with guns, and the plot kept me guessing. Just when I thought I'd figured things out, something else happened to show me I was wrong. I like that in a show. Next I'll watch Desert Punk, which is on loan from a coworker (not MJ). Need to decide what to buy after that. The short list is Black Heaven, Noir, Fullmetal Alchemist, You're Under Arrest. Having a hard time choosing.

Monday I leave on a business trip to St. Louis for a conference. Mt teammate, who I'm traveling with, isn't exactly a party animal, but there should be other folks I know at the conference who I can go out and have a blast with. Also, one of my former co-workers is out there now, and I look forward to seeing him and his wife again. This trip could be good.
plumbob78: (Default)
I went to Oregon.

While there, I saw things of great natural beauty, such as:
Multnomah Falls,
Multnomah Falls

and Crater Lake
Crater Lake Panorama

At Crater Lake, we (I) discovered we had a puncture and we (Jason) had to change the tire on the rental car. We had to cut that excursion short because we needed to get the tire repaired, not wanting to drive to Portland on a donut.

Andy and Theresa got married.


It was nice. Rachel was there. Hadn't seen her in 3+ years. I'd said before that I wouldn't mind (might even be happy, actually) never ever seeing her again. She hugged me, we talked. At the reception, she forced me onto the dance floor. At the brunch the following day, Andy took a picture of us. She made rabbit ears behind my head. When all of us parted ways I gave her my e-mail address, and she said we would keep in touch. I stand by my previous statement.

I met a nice girl at the wedding. Her name is S. She is Andy's brother's wife's sister and she works at Powell's city of books in Portland. Of all the folks at the wedding I didn't already know, she is the one I talked to the most.

Powell's had been the one place we had planned not to miss in Portland. After meeting Sarah, we had something to do there besides browse books.

As soon as we arrived in Portland, we went to the book store, and found S at the counter where they buy used books from folks. We said hello and chatted for a while. She was excited because the author of Logan's Run had been in earlier in the day. We asked S for a recommendation of a distinctly Portland restaurant for dinner, and she recommended "Jake's." Rachel had made the same recommendation, so that pretty much settled it for us. We then spent a good while in the stacks. I selected a book on Shinto, and another book on Japanese thought. 

S had mentioned she finished work at 9 o'clock. Don't know why she mentioned this (e.g. whether she was indicating she'd be amenable to going out with us or something. Will never know now.

It's the strangest thing - all day long I'd thought about asking if she would like to come with us wherever we decided to go to dinner, or something, and I didn't. I thought about it, while I was browsing German Cookbooks near her counter, but she was busy buying books at that point. Likewise when we were on out way to the cashier with our purchases. So neither Jason or I made an invitation or said goodbye, we just let her be and left.

After walking to Pioneer Square, we took a tram down to the river and saw the Japanese-American plaza. There wasn't a direct tram route back to where Jake's was, so we walked there, which took us right past Powell's again. I saw S through the window (unoccupied). It would have been so easy to go in and say "Hey, we're on our way to Jake's want to come with us, we can hang out in he bar until you get off?" Or. something. But I didn't. Kicked myself for it the rest of the night, over my raw oysters and fried razor clams.

Crazy to be upset about this. If I had invited her, what end would it be working toward? She lives in Portland, so even if she had said yes (to some nut from across the country who just met her and is inviting her to dinner, mind you), what's the point?. She was pretty. And nice. I liked her.

How nuts is this? I go away for a long weekend and decide I'd like to go out with a girl who lives in Oregon??  WTF?? Same old question: what the hell's the matter with me?

Post Script: My angst over this has passed, thanks to filling the past two days with thought of other things and healthy doses of fun. I think this chapter of my f'ed up life is closed.
plumbob78: (Default)
20 September 2007, 0742 EDT

Delta Flight 453 to Atlanta is by my reckoning less than half full. This I do not find terribly surprising. 0700 cannot be the most popular departure time. I know I wouldn't be on this particular aircraft if I'd had an option that left later and still got me to Portland at a decent hour. It could be worse, I could be on the 0600 flight that Gino and Cindy were boarding for their trip to California, en route to a different wedding. I chatted with them for a while in the airport as they waited for their flight to board, as I had two hours to kill.

It's been 3 years since I'd last seen Cindy (Gino's wife). She's drastically changed her hair, both in cut and color, such that from a distance I didn't even recognize her as Cindy when I first saw the two together. I could only assume it was her based on her being with Gino and my assessment that Gino isn't a jerk. It was odd seeing herb with different hair. It didn't look bad -- quite nice, actually -- but it didn't fit my mental image from our last meeting.  My old visual "definition" of "Cindy" didn't fit anymore. This, I guess is what comes of seeing people so rarely.

The flight attendants come by with the usual assortment of snacks, from which I select some cookie-ish thing, then beverages.

"Drink?"
"COFFEE."
"Black?"
"YES."

I've taken to drinking coffee much more lately, though I don't think I'm addicted, because I often go for long stretches without the stuff.

"Flight attendant." I really dislike that title. It sounds impersonal to me. And I don't get the "flight" part. How exactly are they attending to the flight anyway?  "Good morning Mr. Airplane, would you like a big drink of Jet A, today?" Perhaps they really mean "in-flight [passenger] attendant." They take care of us who pay to sit in the seats, at least theoretically. But even then, "attendant" just has some quality I dislike. Why can't we go back to the old titles? I like "stewardess." I like the idea of "stewardship," taking care of something. Call the male one "stewards." What's wrong with a little gender specificity now and then? Some gender specific words are quite beautiful, like "aviatrix." It just sounds cool. And it would be Oh so helpful on business cards, if you happen to have one of those male-female names like Leslie. Certainly, if we've taken the word from some other language like Latin, and it has different forms for different genders, we should use them. If we're going to steal the word, we owe it to the elder tongue to use that word properly, I think.

All set.

Sep. 19th, 2007 11:27 pm
plumbob78: (Default)
Plane leaves 0700 tomorrow morning. Off to see yet more friends get married. I swear to myself I will take pictures, and get someone to take pictures of me enjoying myself, which are in painfully short supply around here. I'm all packed. I've forgotten  nothing. All that is left is to go to sleep and wake up.

Blah blah

Jun. 30th, 2007 08:01 pm
plumbob78: (Default)
Thursday at work sucked. I really wanted to be anywhere but there, and was generally unhappy. So much so, that when I saw a bunch of slightly younger people going out to lunch together and being happy, I wished they would die. Or at least be unhappy. I left work early so I could come home and get ready to go to a concert. Julia had two tickets to Jimmy Buffett, and I went with her. The music was OK, but overall the evening sucked. Getting there was hellish and there were thousands of drunken morons, which I may not have minded so much if I had been drunk and acting stupidly too, but I wasn't. The experience was unpleasant and I was unpleasant to be around. Getting out and home sucked too. I really fucking hate that goddamn Nissan Pavilion, I don't know why I ever go to concerts there. No matter how much I enjoy the show, that feeling always evaporates in the parking lot afterward.

Anticipating getting home late, I had gotten Friday off, but I didn't take the whole day. Just slept in real late and went to the office around lunchtime, since I had stuff I could be doing. Yesterday at work was OK. The day was enlivened by a colleague at another Agency, who released a report that was not only informative but also uproariously funny. I really wish I could paraphrase some of the funnier bits here, but the nature of our business is such that I cannot. Last night I went with [insanejournal.com profile] damian792 and [insanejournal.com profile] becca5 to an improv comedy thing in Ballston, which was a laugh riot! Had a beer afterward and all was good.

Today I decided to go for a drive, I left around 1100 and started heading south. I didn't have a real plan, just sort of a vague notion of driving a long way. I thought maybe I'd go to Richmond. But around Woodbridge, Interstate 95 turned into a parking lot (oops, 4th of July weekend, I forgot), so I said "fuck this" and got off the highway. I snaked my way north through Prince William County, got on 66 headed west and just drove. I stopped in Front Royal for lunch, then got back on the highway and kept going. I got to where 66 joins 81, and turned south (toward Roanoke). After a while I saw a sign telling me the distance to Harrisonburg, and decided that would be as good a place as any to turn around and come home. I got off at the JMU exit, where signs indicated a Dairy Queen was to be found, hit the DQ for an Ice Cream and a short rest, then set out for my return trip to Arlington. The drive was good. By the time I got back, I'd put over 290 miles on my car and burned up most of the tank of gasoline I bought before leaving this morning. I felt much refreshed after my little trip. I really love driving long distances, especially when there's no destination I have to reach. Something about the open road takes all my misery away. Next to being with friends, I believe I'm happiest behind the wheel of my car, barreling down the highway at 80-odd mph.

Speaking of this, I've been thinking again about the next car I'm going to buy. It's probably a ways off, since I've promised my sensible side to wait until my current vehicle truly needs to be replaced, but lately it's been on my mind more than usual. I'd been thinking about a hybrid Camry, both for the gas savings and because it's a convenient way to help the environment, but I think I really want a two-door car with a big engine. I really like the look of the upcoming Dodge Challenger. I think I may like it even better than the current Ford Mustang. I think I will definitely try to test-drive one, when it hits showrooms. Production's supposed to be limited, though, so I bet they'll be hard to get. I do have one thing going for me, in that unlike just about everyone else I will not want a white one.

I had made a voice-post from the parking lot of that DQ in Harrisonburg, but upon getting home and listening to myself, I immediately deleted it. The sound of my own voice makes me want to vomit.

No clue what I'm doing tonight. No fucking way in hell I'm going to play poker with Tom and company, because last time I did that I had no fun. And I want fun. [edit: I lied, there's nothing else to do]

No clue as to tomorrow either. Laundry maybe. Or maybe laundry will wait until Monday, when I am also off.

The Admiral has kindly given us four hours early release on Tuesday.

Wednesday is dinner with the 'rents.

Things are pretty much OK here.
plumbob78: (Default)
I've posted pictures from my New York trip. Theres no point trying to write up a detailed account now, as I didn't write nearly as much in my paper journal as I'd planned to while up there, and I cannot remember everything I wanted to write. This pictorial will have to suffice. )

It was a good trip, and I can't wait to go back.

I think I must have gotten confused about something last night, because I wound up at the AFI Silver watching Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead alone. But it was a good movie, so I didn't mind.

I am home

Jun. 23rd, 2007 01:48 pm
plumbob78: (Default)
Let's have some theme music for this one:



If you ever actually find yourself on the way to Amarillo, I suggest you turn around. To quote Bugs Bunny, you should have taken that left turn at Albuquerque. 'Cuz if you turn right, you will get to Amarillo. Stay in Albuquerque. It's better there. Really.

Oh, there's some OK stuff there. Palo Duro Canyon, for instance:
Canyon Vista 1
That was pretty nice. We didn't get a chance to to to the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame and Museum, but it may be pretty cool.

We did see the Cadillac Ranch,
Cadillac Ranch
which is one of the better roadside attractions I've seen in my day.

But honestly, the best part of this TDY was work. The mall sucked, although the sign piqued my interest a little:
Mall

Overall, however, Amarillo is a dump. The only things I could think of to do were drink -- which was bad, because we weren't in convenient walking distance to any bars, except for one of the five or six gentleman's clubs I saw out there, and I wasn't going there-- and smoke -- which was bad because I had taken the drastic step of not smoking and leaving all the necessary implements at home because the facility I was visiting doesn't allow matches, lighters, flint-and-steel, or anything else that creates spark or flame, owing to safety reasons. Our days consisted of going to class, returning to the hotel to change, trying to find an attraction that hadn't closed yet,going to dinner, then on a couple of nights seeking out ice cream. We had a nice drive in the countryside one evening. We went to Happy, TX ("The town without a frown" -- not kidding, the billboard said so, but I forgot my camera then, so you will have to trust me), where we used the restrooms and watched part of a little-league game. Getting home was a misery. Our flight out of Amarillo was delayed a few hours by thunderstorms in Dallas. Didn't get home until 0100 today. Took a long time to get our luggage. First thing I did when home was buy cigarettes. Stupid, since five days off of them is as good as quit for me. But I wanted them, because the days sucked so hard. Maybe this week I'll stop again. In general, though, the trip was pretty good. The class I attended was awesome. There's another class I want to take there, so I will return at some point, despite the fact that Amarillo sucks. It's the only place you can see the stuff I was there to see.

Trip

Jun. 17th, 2007 02:10 pm
plumbob78: (Default)
Tomorrow I fly to Amarillo, TX. My flight's at like 9:30 AM which sucks. But the trip itself should be fun. Today I went to the mall and got some more short sleeve button-down shirts, and also picked up some razor blades. Now I'm doing laundry so I can pack later this afternoon/evening.

Apparently, my camera did not make it home last night. But I know it's safe where I left it, so I'm not terribly concerned. Retrieval can wait. Don't think I'll find much worth a photographic record in Texas anyway.

I'm sleepy.

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