Earlier this summer, soon after returning from our two week RV adventure to Yellowstone and the Tetons, we planned to take Harold to the Beach Boardwalk to celebrate his birthday. But the RV broke down, we got stranded, and we had to promise him another time.
This weekend, we finally made good on that. Saturday morning was clear and cool, with a promise of a warmer day, even coast-side. We arrived at the Boardwalk to claim our wristbands, only be to pleasantly surprised not once, but twice: It was bring-a-friend-for-free day, and we also were just in time for the annual chili cookoff. Nice, there's our lunch!
Overall, we had very much a satisfying day, riding rides, spending lots of times at the shoot-em-up Terminator game, eating and rating lots of chili, and even kicking up some sand on the beach. By the time we left at about 6:30pm, it was already getting dark and we were all pooped.
It's a good thing we got to bed early on Saturday, because Sunday was another busy day. I went for a run at Almaden Quicksilver County Park with a few people from work, a trail run, a five miler. When I got home, Rita and Harold took off to do errands while Penny and I stayed back and finished installing Halloween decorations. Ol' Skelly Bones finally got himself a home, swinging from a high branch of a redwood tree out front. Harold got home, and got a little spooked when I animated Ol' Skelly as he exited the car. Harold likes being scared, but he does get scared.
In the afternoon, we cleaned up to head up to Concord to celebrate Aunt Jean's 99th birthday. Though she's slowed down, has lost some hearing and still battling some dementia, she is in generally good health. And from the looks of it at the all-you-can-eat Country Buffet restaurant, she hasn't really lost her appetite. Lots of family were there from Cousin Betty's (Grandpa Rex's) side of the family.
And I didn't even mention Friday night at the Grand National Rodeo at the Cow Palace. Another busy weekend.
Last weekend, I hit the two hundred mile (322 km) mark for my running for the year. That's pretty good. Last year, I did 212 for the entire year. If I'm doing my math correctly, I'm on track for 500 miles for the year.
Nice side benefit is that I've lost 15 to 20 pounds (6.8 to 9 kg). And people notice, too. I'll take it!
Walking up to the front door about twenty minutes ago, I see what looks like a cat walking past the door outside. As I start to open the door to scare it away, I realize it has a ringed tail. Raccoon!
The sound of the door opening spooked it enough so that it ran to the nearest tree and climbed up a few feet before stopping to stare back at me. Pretty masked face looking back at me.
I won the staring contest and it climbed up the redwood, disappearing into the dark branches. Then I see another shadow skirt by toward the same tree. Two coons!
I went inside and grabbed a flashlight and looked all around up in the tree. Finally I saw bright, round yellow eyes looking back down at me. Moving to a better vantage point, I saw both of the pairs of eyes, then the bodies. Went in again to get Penny out of bed; she wasn't asleep yet. We go back out, spot them, and she finally sees them. But there's not just two, there are three of them up in the tree. Wow, what a find! That's pretty cool, having raccoons out front.
Got me thinking later, though, that they might be coming around here because they are running low on water and/or food further out in the wilds. There has been some chatter in our neighborhood Nextdoor circles that coyotes have been spotted nearby. And there have been cats found dismembered after being out after dark.
If the reason we're getting such wildlife so far into the suburbs is because of the drought, then that's just sad. I really hope we all make it through, the human families as well as all the families of critters out there that depend on the rains, all the same.
Photo courtesy Flickr user Nico via CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
In October, we thought we were going to Tahoe, neighbor Jerry's cabin. We changed the plan a week before the holiday, and at the very last minute, the night before, registered for the Silicon Valley Turkey Trot. Morning of, we got up early and prepped, figuring out light rail details, bib numbers, safety pins, etc.
Drove to the light rail station, rolled into downtown. We walked too much looking for where they were handing out late-comer bibs, but got a break when we ran into a volunteer person looking for registered participants with bib numbers above 26000 (that's us!).
Ran most of the 3 miles, and finished at 38:47 according to my watch's chronometer (only one second off from the official time!). After the 3.1, we made our way to the festival area, found our TT 2013 shirts, got free bananas, sweet potato chips and water, then made way to Santa Clara light rail station. Train was just arriving so we ran for the train but missed it, then happily discovered it wasn't ours. Railed it back to the car, and got home in time to ready for thanksgiving with family. Just enough, just in, time. Like greased rails, oh yeah...
Next year, let's do this a little more seriously, ok?
Yesterday, I got a cold call from a real estate agent, also known as a used home salesman. Not sure how he got my number, and I'm not sure if he actually knew where I live, where the property is located.
He told me that inventory in the area was low, there is a resurgence in the local market, and whether I was considering selling. Yada, yad.
I replied that everything's for sale, implying that anything could be sold if the price was right. He may not have picked up on that implication, as he started to get really excited that he may have hooked a live one, someone who was considering selling but just hadn't acted on it yet. I'm sure big dollar sign ideas of commissions started running through his head.
He asked if we could meet up to talk about it. But first, I said, he had to understand that there is a minimum price I would have, specifically, we would only consider selling if we were looking at eight figures. It took him a second to do the math, at which point he started laughing. As if I was kidding. I told him if he could come up with a buyers that could produce that kind of serious offer, then we could talk. However, if he didn't think his salesmanship was up to the challenge, he can keep walking.