Thursday, September 30, 2010

K&R Relive Rebecca's Year Abroad Part I: Quito

Okay, here goes. I'll try to stay light on the travelogue and heavy on the pictures because if you're anything like me, your bandwidth vastly exceeds your desire to listen to other people's vacation stories. You've already seen all our best Ecuador photos, as touched up and presented by Mr. Smarchetype himself, so I've only included outtakes here, plus a handful of uncredited pictures stolen from Sandy.

The first five-ish days of our trip were spent in Quito due to T&R's wedding and other auxiliary events. The first seven pictures below are sightseeing scenes from the lovely Old Town, including selected adventures from the Basilica (which provides breathtaking views of the city via a dusty catwalk in the rafters and at least 8 vertical miles of glorified ladders. I'm pretty sure my face looked like that for the entire time). We also visited two equator parks while we were there, the one that the actual equator runs through and the one that has the big fancy monument... but turns out the equator doesn't actually run through it. Whoops. Their bad. Below you can see our (accurately) cross-hemispheric high-five as well as Richard trying (ahem, and failing. Please note that I was the only gringo in our tour group who managed it. I'm so good at accomplishing meaningless things) to balance an egg on a nail, one of the many charmingly low-budget activities in which you could partake at the actual equator park. We did lots of other playing around town, and then we went to T&R's beautiful wedding, where we got teary and ate tasty food and danced a lot and then got tired (behold R's SLEEPY EYES(tm), captured for posterity!). Then we played around Quito for another day. Then we flew away. Stay tuned for the exciting next installment: Cuenca and Banos or, How Our Heroes Finally Managed To Go At Least One Place In Ecuador Where Rebecca Hasn't Been Yet.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sorry for the blogsilence

I've been wanting to chime in on the wedding madness and update picklewatch and and and.... But my brain is being eaten by the new job. I'll just say that I've been grateful for friends and fam repeatedly talking me down and distracting me with south indian dinners and bad movies and burrito lunches and a new computer and singing!

I offer an extremely belated l'shanah tovah to all, mostly as an excuse to post this:

Courtesy of the Magnes Museum's fabulous collection of vintage Rosh Hashanah cards.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Wedding madness 2010 recap, part 2

Geez, that's some contentious commenting down below! To distract you all (and appease that portion of the huddled masses yearning to breathe free who believe a Part 1 should always be followed by a Part 2) I present to you: Part 2.

When we last visited with our heroes, they were making their way to the reception. Where we milled about in the lovely gardens of a pretty little farm and then were ushered hastily under the big tent for dinner with a warning that the storm was coming back. Which it did, with a vengeance. A lights-going-out, buckets-of-rain-pouring-down, hurricane-strength-winds-almost-tipping-the-tent-over, everyone-jumping-up-out-of-their-chairs-and-running-to-the-sides-of-the-tent-to-hold-the-walls-up, caterers-getting-drenched vengeance. There may have been thunder and lightening as well, although it really wasn't necessary to impress us.

But we waited it out, and ate dinner, and the brides' families started speechifying, and lo and behold the sky cleared and there was a massive double rainbow.

I mean really, what more does a wedding day need?

A few more outtakes. Plus the rainbow again, because really, it was just that awesome. Stay tuned for the next installment of WEDDING MADNESS 2010 RECAP, Ecuador edition...

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Wedding madness 2010 recap, part 1

So did we ever finish telling you about Lauren & Ruth's wedding? The ceremony was set to take place in the yard of Lauren's family's lake house on Saturday afternoon. When we were getting shuttled across in the pontoon boat from our rustic Boy Scout camp accommodations that afternoon, the weather stopped being hot and sunny and turned dark and stormy. Then it started pouring, forcing all the guests (with the notable exception of one elderly salt-of-the-earth gentleman - I think he was related to Ruth - who spent the entire storm standing in his flannels under the eaves, gazing out over the lake. So good.) onto the big screen porch to intrepidly wait it out. The string duo played on, giving the whole thing (as Richard pointed out) a vaguely Titanic-like feel. Er, in the best way possible...

Then came the hurricane-strength winds and golf-ball-sized hail. For, like, an hour.

During this time the brides graciously came out and entertained us and someone opened up the wine to placate the crankypantses. And we waited it out and finally the sun came out! And everyone dried off the chairs with bath towels and the beautiful windy ceremony got started only an hour late.

And then came the actual hurricane. But I'm out of blogging time. So I'll leave you with a big old-fashioned-serial TO BE CONTINUED... as well as a few photo outtakes. Sorry, they're not resized. Don't click on them or they'll explode your computer.

Yay wedding!

Monday, September 06, 2010

a new hope

(Are we the only ones who've been watching the star wars marathon all day? Please envision the following post as written in yellow slanty streaming text. But without cgi.)

I may have only gotten paid for teaching 4 80-minute classes over the last 2 weeks, but I've been a busy unemployed bee. The seriously condensed version. I cleaned out my stuff from 2 old places of work. (Then I attempted to clean out my room to find a place to put said stuff, but only got to the stage of making things worse before it gets better.) I got taken out for lunch in Chinatown by old coworkers and treated to sushi by then-current coworkers. I volunteered at the Eat Real Fest - where I immediately got pressed into pouring overpriced local wine, which was a pretty sweet gig once I figured out how to pretend I had any idea what I was talking about. I read 4 books - mostly of the putting-your-own-problems-in-perspective genre that Inder is so fond of. I made pickles (picklewatch update coming soon!), blackberry jam, grape jelly, and I'm still splattered with tonight's batch of strawberry lavender. I took my bike on bart for the first time. I babysat Joe twice, helped Natalia move and survived our heat wave. I watched a lot of bad tv, with a sprinkling of awesome tv.

I angsted about not having a new job, and then I angsted over starting a new job. Oh, did I mention that I have a new job?? I start tomorrow. I'm teaching 2nd/3rd graders at a literacy after-school program. The commute is longer than I'd like but at least it's bike/bartable and I'm excited to actually spend some time in San Francisco. Oh, and I joined a choir! Which also starts tomorrow! I better get me some beauty rest.

ETA: I would be remiss if I didn't share this dioramarama specimen with you.

"I always focus on Imperial troops for my Labor Day images because I believe they best represent the spirit of the holiday," says Hayford. "No one works harder. And no one receives less respect or compensation. They work tirelessly until they expire."