Friday, November 28, 2008
Maybe it's because I got up at 445am yesterday and am still recovering
Maybe it's because I played the Nintendo Wii (Mario Galaxy if you must know) for hours on end on Thanksgiving Day, so much that my neck hurts, my eyes hurt.
Maybe it's because it's a holiday and I have an innate sense that "there's nothing going on" and "nobody's listening".
Maybe it's because I drank wine yesterday. Hmm, yeah, that's probably it. Nothing's better than drinking red wine with Mario, and jumping from world to world, flying through the Universe, defeating mushroom enemies. Nothing's better than gathering Power Stars, getting electrocuted, falling into Black Holes. And then living to tell about it.
I'm trying to concentrate, but forget what I'm concentrating on. I start writing a story, and forget to finish it. I even forget which blog I want to read next. For now, I'll call it "Aquarius Syndrome". Aquarians are supposed to live most of their lives with their heads in the clouds. I'm glad I have something to blame my spaciness on. Thank you, coworkers, for putting up with me today.
I want to go eat some potatoes now.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
- I'm Thankful for all the friends and family I love
- I'm Thankful for shelter, the money to support myself
- I'm Thankful to live somewhere that's nonviolent
- I'm Thankful for the natural beauty that surrounds us
- I'm Thankful I have my health
- I'm Thankful I have the ability to acutely enjoy my life
That is just the beginning, I could write a thousand things here. One of the things we'd do when I was young was all hold hands around the table, and instead of saying a prayer, we'd say what we were thankful for.
It's important to recognize our gifts, and I'm glad I was taught to enjoy that as a young child. Whatever you are doing today, remember to just stop and think, breath deeply, and remember what you're thankful for.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Monday, November 24, 2008
After eating and drinking wine, we retreated to the living room to listen to music, dance and play percussion instruments. I don't have any pictures of that part of Thanksgiving, I was too busy banging on my conga drums. That is one of our favorite things to do when we entertain, is to get people to play instruments, since percussion tends to be easy. Everyone picked up a shacker, rattle, drum, or frog, and off we went! We ended up staying up until 1am, and then waking up early to eat turkey for breakfast. All and all, a very fun, and very BUSY weekend!
Thursday, November 20, 2008
I have been tired every day this week, and unmotivated. I don't know why, either. I've been playing tennis every day, eating pretty healthily, but can't seem to sleep the night through. I'll have weird dreams and wake up suddenly, then have a hard time falling back asleep. Every morning I groan, feeling the urge to just stay home and make soup, and just linger in the perfect lighting for my state of mine. I don't like rushing out to the car, then walking down the flourescent-lit tunnel to the ferry, then getting onboard with the stench of perfume and even more ugly lights enveloping me.
I'm just in a strange state right now, and I think some other people are feeling that way to. What is it? Is it the darkness in the morning? Is it the approaching holidays? Is it the financial doom and gloom every day on the news? I just want to be in bed with a steaming hot cup of coffee, and a good book.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
First of all, I saw sort of a sinister looking man walk by with a heavy bag, who moseyed down to the kitchen. He seemed to be casing the boat, looking left and right. Immediately, a woman in a ferry uniform ran past at full speed. I'm sitting near the Crew Day Room, which became a hub of activity. Ferry personnel ran in and out, the Captain called the Second Mate over the loudspeaker. For several heartwrenching seconds, I thought I'd hear an explosion come from the galley or I thought they'd tell all passengers to move to a certain part of the vessel, or that the vessel was sinking. Then I heard the captain say, "Are there any doctors onboard? Are there any doctors?" Then I knew it wasn't a threat and had nothing to do with the man who walked by, so I immediately breathed easier.
Apparently there is a man onboard who was having a seizure. I can't see him, but I can see all the crewmembers surrounding him, and a doctor who stepped forward with his bag. I think he is doing allright now because all the ferry personnel look much more relaxed.
I'm mad at myself to overreacting to seeing this "suspicious" man on the boat, but immediately following a "threat" on one of the other ferries, I'm at a heightened awareness. It's weird that my mode of public transportation is considered a terrorist target. Yes, I do think about it every so often, but have faith in law enforcement and intelligence that it won't happen.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
I never knew the little, classy Japanese restaurant Saito's at 2nd avenue would be one of the strangest dining experiences of my life. It looked benign on the outside; David and I love Japanese food, especially Miso soup and teriyaki. What could be so STRANGE about that? We scanned the menu, and I ordered salmon terikayi and David ordered the surf and turf. It said "table-side cooking" in the description, which we both thought to mean a chef would come out with gigantic chopsticks and whip something up with blue fire a la Beni Hana. Boy were we mistaken.
We stared as the waitress brought out David's meal, which consisted of thin slices of raw meat, and raw shrimp and scallops. Next to that plate she put a very hot, VERY SMALL, rock surrounded by salt. She grasped the chopsticks with dexterous fingers, and "showed" David how to cook his own food. I'm sorry, but go to a restaurant and COOK YOUR OWN FOOD? What the heck is that all about? If we wanted to cook our own food we would have hit up the Town and Country and brought home steak and shrimp for about 1/4 the price.
Cooking on this tiny rock was NOT easy. First of all, David (obviously) isn't Japanese, and can't twirl chopsticks like the best of them. He painstakingly put a shrimp and a piece of steak on the rock, which kept falling off into the salt. Each item got so heavily coated with salt it was almost unedible. David was also VERY hungry, and had to just sit there and salivate as he WATCHED his food cooking in front of him....very slowly. It wouldn't have been so bad if it wasn't for the salt. It's like punishment for not being able to use chopsticks.
"It's like if they brought you a whole pig and a spit, and put a bunch of poop in the hole beneath it," I told him, "This is completely ridiculous".
Eventually, they brought David another rock without the salt, and we sat there for another 15 minutes as he cooked the rest of his food. It didn't help that this was a fairly expensive restaurant. My salmon was "okay", but I could have cooked it better at home. Cooking on a rock was too caveman-like to make it a fine dining experience.
Maybe David and I aren't Japanese enough to enjoy a meal like this, and don't plan on EVER! going back. We got home last night after this "going out" experience, and whipped up some homemade bean burritos with jalapenos and cheese. Ahhh, now that's more like it.
Friday, November 14, 2008
I have chosen to head to Mexico in the winter for a variety of reasons. It's sunny, around 70 degrees, as opposed to Europe in the winter, which is about 50 degrees and can be cloudy and rainy. I'd rather save Italy or Spain for a spring or fall vacation down the road. I'm also considering moving to San Miguel de Allende with David at some point, and want to check out the city to see if I love it as much as Queretaro. I also want to attend Spanish classes or conversation practice daily on our vacation, and take some cooking classes. San Miguel de Allende is an international city; expats from all over the world make up about 15 percent of the population, the other 85 percent is Mexican. I think it will be comfortable there for David, who doesn't speak any Spanish.
I think think the Central region of Mexico is FAR different than the beach resorts. I may be wrong, since I've never been to the beaches, but people who have tell me they are very touristy, with constant activity every day, and everyone speaks English. The culture is largely lost. Central Mexico feels more like Europe. Streets are clean and safe, the architecture is magnificent; reminiscent of Spain, and in San Miguel de Allende, of France. People smile and are very kind, and know how to party at night. Dancers fill the "Center" often referred to as the "Zocolo," or "El Jardin". Random musicians pop up on street corners. You can buy food from neighborhood vegetable stands. I just love it there, and can't wait to return to my second home.
I also can't wait to take a billion pictures and update all my blogger friends daily.
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
I had to go live on the radio immediately after I heard the King County Sheriff spokesman deliver the news about this toddler. I heard my voice quiver as I fought back tears, but tried to stay the professional reporter. Images of this boy and the fight of his 13-year old cousin to save him flashed like movie clips in my mind. The cousin frantically rolling down windows. The cousin getting out, then taking a deep breath to plunge back into the currents to try to get to the baby, but getting swept away and drowning. No one knows where his body is. The horror of the 16-year old driver who got away safe.
I've never been at a story that affected me so much, that affected everyone there. Reporters talked in low voices with ashen faces. Sad, shiny eyes. I had to bite my lip to keep from crying and knew everyone was doing the same. We had a job to do, a story to tell. I think the overwhelming sadness of the friends and family of these two children created a blanket of anguish that settled around everyone nearby. It's hard not to cry when you see a family member sobbing her heart out only a few feet away.
When it was all said and done, I sat in my newscar to write my stories. I heard a tap on the window and looked up, seeing a family member.
"I just wanted to tell you thanks," she said quietly, her eyes bloodshot with tears and stress. I looked at her and smiled faintly, nodded.
"I wanted to thank the news media, for covering this and being so respectful of the family."
"I hope you find the 13-year old boy," I told her.
"We will, we will." Her eyes were sad but she smiled again, maybe thinking of his face.
Monday, November 10, 2008
One itinerary we're throwing around is to head to central Mexico where I spent 3 months in 2001. I can't believe its been so long, and I'm having this deep craving to go back to the place I call my second home. We would land in Mexico City, spend a day there, then take the bus to Queretaro, and spend a day or two, then a bus to San Miguel de Allende, and spend a week. I lived in Queretaro, but want to check out San Miguel since that might be a place David and I might like to live someday. I hear its magical place in the mountains, with lots of art and beauty.
Another place we are thinking of is Florence, Italy, but tickets there are twice as much as Mexico, so I'm not sure if we'll do that one or not. David says its the most beautiful city in the world, so that is tempting. Round trip airfare is $742 in late January, which really isn't bad for Italy. Choices, choices! I know I'll be happy anywhere I get to go.
It's so important to have something to plan and look forward to. Our last big trip was to Europe in 2006, so it will soon be almost two years since I've taken a week or more off work. I really need it. I love being a reporter, meeting new people, writing, thinking of creative ways to tell a story. But my poor brain is saying WHEN....WHEN can I just take some time to heal and refresh. I really can't wait. I'm jumping up and down inside. I'll keep you posted as to what location we choose!
Saturday, November 8, 2008
I wonder what these families would think if they saw us talk about the death of their loved ones like this. I think its important to always remember the humanity, the sacredness of each human life as we tell a story. When we take the time to think, "this was a human being", the compassion shows in our voices.
But its hard to always feel sadness for every person who dies. We are confronted with so much death and destruction as journalists that sometimes its easier to joke than to recognize the loss of life.
David witnessed the loss of life one rainy evening in downtown Seattle. He was in the middle of a crosswalk when a pedestrian feet away from him was struck by a car. He saw this person go flying. He saw the paramedics try to pump the life back into this man. He saw the lone tennis shoe flung a block and a half from the scene. He saw the cops gather up this man's belongings and put them in a pink plastic bag. David always gets tremendously sad when he hears of loss of life in a car accident, or pedestrian accident. He helps me find my humanity when remembering these lives, these people just going about their business, who never knew they'd become a news story.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
This morning I woke up in complete confusion. Two alarms were doing off, David was shaking me and I had no idea why.
"What day is it?" I asked him drowsily, still having no clue why I had set two alarms on a Saturday morning.
"Thursday, you have to get up and go to work."
"It's only Thursday? My God." This is officially the slowest week in all of humanity.
A similar "head in the clouds" moment just happened to me at work. I came out of the bathroom and just stood there in the hall, not understanding what part of the building I was standing in. It was like I teleported from bathroom to bathroom. It was very disconcerting because I didn't remember walking all the way across the building.
This week has been an emotional roller coaster. I worked 13 hours Tuesday, and I feel like I'm recovering from a huge election day hangover, even though I never took a celebratory sip of champagne. It's like a major sugar rush, then a crash that lasts 5 days. Ohhh brain, get back down to EARTH.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
On Capitol Hill, an entire intersection was blocked. House music blasted and people sang and danced, showering each other with champagne and shooting off fireworks. People drank booze in the street, men with no shirts chest-bumped and yelled. What other election of event has made people celebrate like this? The energy was contagious, vibrant, enthusiastic, people everywhere smiling. I will remember that day forever. Yes, it's finally real. President Barack Obama, I love you!
Monday, November 3, 2008
Sunday, November 2, 2008
My favorite activity to do on a rainy day is to make soup. I'm making an Italian Minestrone, one of Giada's recipes, she is on Food Network. This minestrone is special. There is diced pancetta, tomatoes, swiss chard, a parmesan cheese rind and a fresh sprig of parmesan. I love those extra ingredients I wouldn't normally think to add to Minestrone. The smell is intoxicating, filling my small kitchen with simmering onions and garlic. I'm going to serve this soup with grated parmesan cheese, crusty bread, and a little bit of red wine on the side.
I've never seen a storm this ferocious in the Northwest. I'm so glad I love my house, it's the perfect place to be.