Saturday, July 30, 2005


My sister said I answered the phone today like, "Hello, My Life Sucks."

Monday, July 25, 2005

Note to My Future Husband

Note to My Future Husband: When I am eight months pregnant, and I want to go on my nightly walk, the right thing to do would be to walk with me.
I just saw a woman obviously very close to full term walking on the wooded trail in my neighborhood. She was sooo tired looking, just from walking at her slow pace, and she was all alone.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Hamilton Pool

This weekend, my mom and dad and I went to Hamilton Pool, a really neat swimming hole on the outskirts of Austin. It's a bit of a hike to get there but well worth it!
What is so cool about it is there is a large circular overhang with a 50 foot waterfall spraying down on to the swimming area, and bits of water come through the limestone in several places where the stone has worn down and formed holes. Essentially, you are just surrounded by waterfalls in the middle of the hill country. It is really an awesome place!
My mom took pics on her camera, and when she e-mails them, I will post them.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Farmer's Market

Today, my Dad and I went to the Sunset Valley Farmer's Market. I had never been there, and I was really impressed. It was much larger than most farmer's markets, and the competition seemed to keep the prices down. As some of my b-day gifts, my Dad bought me a fig tree and a banana tree. I am really excited about both of them! Both of the salespeople (or farmers, I guess) said they would produce fruit next year, which is way quick! We also tried a fruit we had never heard of - a canary melon, and it was great! It's like a canteloupe but sweeter and lighter. We bought tons of fruit and came back home and made a fruit juice concoction with all of it that was fantastic!

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Two-story Target!

I can't believe I forgot to mention the two-story Target in San Diego! One of the highlights of my trip - literally!
Besides the fact that it is two-story (which is ultra cool in and of itself), it has these nifty cart escalators that take your cart
upstairs and downstairs for you! As you travel on the people escalator, the cart escalator grabs your cart, and it travels right alongside you. They have it timed so that your cart gets there just before you do so you can hop off and grab it right in time!
Erin and I got the biggest kick out of it - as did a whole bunch of other people. We all were just watching it, going, "Wow! That is sooo cool!"

Back from San Diego & Me-he-co!

Very, very tired and back from San Diego and Mexico! My favorite parts were visiting Ensenada in Mexico and laying on Pacific Beach.
The “Road to Ensenada” was beautiful, following the oceanside the entire way with huge cliffs and crashing waves to the right and mountains to the left. The city itself is a blend of authentic Mexico and tourist Mexico, which was good for me since I had never been. Shops had everything from Mexican-style handcrafted goods to upscale world brands. Little kids, some as young as about six, ran up to us selling chiclets and offering to braid our hair. We stopped at a bar called Hussong’s, which turned out to be a hangout for Mexican locals and a perfect place to get the real flavor of Mexico. When I walked in, the building, at 110 years old, “felt” happy. It also turned out to be the birthplace of the margarita. Who knew? Peanut shells filled the floor, and a mariachi band played constantly, with everyone singing along. I really wished I knew the songs because they were having so much fun! We also stopped at Puerto Nuevo, where we had a $13 lobster meal. What a steal!
The next day was spent at the beach in San Diego, where it was cold to the point of goose bumps at times but where I somehow still managed to get sunburned. I couldn’t get in the water like here, of course, because it was so cold, but listening to music and laying on the beach was still very relaxing.
Later that day, we went to Coronado Island and took a look around at the Hotel Del Coronado, which was built in 1888 and is absolutely gorgeous. White on the outside with a red gabled roof, it is a massive structure. Inside, the woodwork is unbelievable, with the richness of the layout and design harkening back to a time when things were built much differently. I'd love to stay there some time.

All in all, it was a very nice trip, but until they can turn up the water temperature, Texas is still the place for me!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Thursday, July 07, 2005

San Diego, Here I Come!

I am so excited! Tomorrow I am leaving for San Diego to visit my best friend who has a place right on the beach. I can't wait to leave everything behind and just lay on the sand, listen to the ocean waves, and relax! I hear we may go to Mexico, too, and have pina coladas made with real coconut juice!

Here are some pics from my last visit. I'm leaving out the ones of me on the kayak getting ready to hack from motion sickness! ;)

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Life Goes on!

I ran in to a lady today at the mall who had spent several hours with me during the bomb scare incident. I didn't recognize her at first because of the change in scenario, but I made sure she knew my pictures had been lost so she didn't wonder about it. She is the one who let me in to her backyard, where I climbed a ladder and leaned over the fence to take a picture of the tent the cops had set up in the guy's yard! What a day that was!
Anyway, we were both looking for bathing suits so I guess life goes on!

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Bomb Scare in My 'Hood - Cover Up??

Early Thursday morning, I looked out my window and saw a police barricade. The posted cop told me there was a suspicious package, and the area had been evacuated. I hopped in my car to see how far the evacuation went, and it turned out to be a section of almost 100 homes. I pulled up to where the first of the news media was and parked. That would begin a very long day ...

The setting: Suburban, upper middle class neighborhood. Nothing ever happens; teenagers don't even know how to execute a proper toilet paper wrapping (seriously - I need to train them. ;))

The story in a nutshell: The victim was an investigator for the Attorney General's office. He walked on his front porch and found a suspicious package. For a reason still unknown, he put on a surgical mask, laid sprawled on his stomach on his front lawn and held on to the package for 45 minutes (This was captured by a news helicopter.) He seems to have had reason to believe something bad would happen if he let go. The Bomb Squad eventually found a way to release him from it, and he rolled away and was decontaminated.

A couple of hours later, we were told the first set of x-rays was inconclusive and that the scene was considered dangerous. A couple of hours from then, we were told it was no longer deemed explosive but that there were suspicious items in the package, and it still was considered dangerous. Then, the FBI came, as if the Bomb Squad, EMS, police, Emergency Response Teams, Regional Strike Teams, Victims Services, Salvation Army Emergency Canteen truck, Capitol Metro buses for the residents, and about 15 media vehicles weren't causing enough of a commotion.

By the time all was said and done, all the residents were out of their homes for 11 hours! Not wanting to miss any of the action and any potentially good pictures or breaking news, I stayed out there the entire day in what would become 100 degree weather. We baked like chickens in a roaster. I drank bottle after bottle of water, but by late afternoon, people were telling me I didn't look well. Two days later, I still don't feel well.

Here's the puzzling part: The story disappeared. Was he targeted? Was it a hoax? Were the materials dangerous? I found NO article on it in the city newspaper, even though there were five tv news stations, a radio station, and me - from a community newspaper - there. My article is the only substantial written source available. And how, after working for my newspaper for four years, did, for the first time ever, my editor somehow lose EVERY SINGLE ONE OF MY PICTURES?

Is there a cover up here? I'm not a huge conspiracy theorist, but something doesn't seem right about this one ...