Sunday, November 6, 2011

Busy Week, Lazy Sunday

The apartment currently smells like stuffed peppers, the scent lingering in the air even though the peppers themselves are carefully wrapped up and placed in the fridge in preparation for the work week of lunches. I made a fresh batch of ketchup, have a bunch of radishes sliced up and pickling, most of my dishes are cleaned, and I'm about two-fifths done with the Christmas present I'm knitting my nephew.

It certainly sounds like I've been productive today, doesn't it? Now I will confess to you that I actually spent over half the day in bed, unable to wrest myself from the clutches of Nap. Seriously, aside from the shower at 11, I didn't actually start doing anything with my day until 3:30 p.m. (Thankfully, Daylight Savings ended last night, else it would have been 4:30.)

I will blame the last week or so for wearing me out. I did a little, a lot, traveled, stayed home, forced myself to go out, forbade myself to stay in.

A week ago yesterday (so, two Saturdays past), I went on a day trip with my Bus Buddy Karin to Carmel-by-the-Sea, ostensibly to show off the yet-unnamed New Car to Karin, but really just to get out of San Francisco while the weather was still fantastic. I think this is the day it started snowing on the East Coast. In Carmel, it was a "sweltering" 78 degrees, and somehow we survived walking around town in it, doing a little window shopping and basically just sampling the local flavor. It was a very Grown Up type of trip, my own foray into Life After 29. (Or is it Life After 39, now? Are we still allowed to party it hardy into our late 30s? Can we refrain from growing up another decade, now?)

I also did two nights of museum drinking. I checked out Night Life at the California Academy of Sciences, on Thursday night. It was actually pretty awesome, drinking and looking at the fish and reptiles. I kind of wish I'd seen more, but I was there with friend Claire and some of her French Posse, so it would have been rude to wander too far off on my own. Perhaps next time I'll go by myself or just with one friend.

Friday night, Karin seemingly-spontaneously suggested that we hit up Friday Nights at the De Young when I mentioned that I was going to be lame and had absolutely no plans for that evening. I didn't realize that there was a Meet-Up group planned for that event that she had signed up for, so I was initially surprised when during an intermission of the music she suddenly was able to find someone she recognized and walked up to him. It actually ended up being kind of fun — I'd forgotten what it's like joining a bunch of people who all know each other only from the internet — and I got to feel a little like I was cool and mingle-y for a couple of hours. The experience actually got me to sign up for Meetup, though I haven't joined any groups yet. Who knows, maybe I'll add that to my list of ways-to-not-be-lonely.

After the De Young, Karin took me to a little hole-in-the-wall Burmese place in the Mission, which I will not name here in the hopes that it stays relatively unknown, because it was frickin' awesome and worth the 30 minutes we stood on the sidewalk in line waiting for one of the 10 stools on the inside. It's tiny, the food was greasy, it was cheap and it was delicious. I'm still surprised at how many great restaurants there are in the city, at so many different price levels, that I have never heard of.

Yesterday, Claire and I braved the rain to go to The Pelican Inn's Guy Fawkes Day celebration. I would like to point out that it was very English weather (cold, rainy, overcast, windy), which I guess felt natural, but made one very sad when one remembered that just four days previous it was sunny and 74 degrees. I had considered not going, but I wanted to hang out with Claire at least once more — she's going back to France on Tuesday, for an undetermined length of time — and I was the one who had offered to drive. Very glad I went. Rain makes a good pub seem even better, the beer was not bad, and there was a real sense of community amongst the three dozen-or-so nutters that actually braved it out to the beach and the raging bonfire. (How they got that fire actually started is beyond me, but I'm sure wind and rain are things the British have long since gotten used to dealing with in cases like this.)

Guy Fawkes Bonfire
I'm wearing a knit toque, a knit scarf, and a knit neck warmer. All really just to keep the driving rain off.

When we went back to the pub for beer and food, we found the electricity out and only cold food and beer available for ordering. That coupled with the complete and utter lack of cell phone coverage, we were forced to actually speak to each other, and joked that we'd been transported back to James I's era and the first Guy Fawkes Day. Around this time, more of the French Posse actually started arriving, so we drank down a beer by candlelight while they also braved the rain, and then discussed heading back into the city for some real sustenance. The final consensus landed on Sheba Piano Lounge, in the Fillmore District. I'd been there once before (Josh lives right around the corner), and it was still as good this time around as I remembered. The French Posse had made reservations for the seats by the fire, so we dried off while sipping good drinks and eating with our hands. It's a great place, and their live music is loudish but not unbearable — some decent jazz to set the mood and steal your mind.

This coming week promises to be almost as exciting. I plan on striking two things off The Bucket List, and then on Saturday I'll be doing karaoke with a group from work. I'm going to say I deserve my Sunday of Sleep.

Right now I should be reading through my voter information packet, since Tuesday is Election Day and sometimes I like to be a good citizen. Not that I'm encouraged to be so when I'm barraged every morning for the month of October by volunteers handing out flyers or candidates wanting to shake my hand in front of the Castro MUNI station. Why do they do this stuff in the morning, when all we want to do is just get to work with a minimum of hassle and an extra cup of coffee? A smart campaign would put its people out there during evening rush hour, when we're stuck at that bus stop waiting for the final ride home. Captive audience, people. I guess they just don't learn.

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