My friend, Allison (better known from the comments section as belsum), is doing a charity walk in Minneapolis for MS. I thought I'd post her donations page if anyone who reads this blog is itching to donate:
No need to feel obligated, but I wanted to recognize her effort for charity.
Go bel!



I know I already posted a Moab picture, but this one is from the second day of off-roading and shows a view so fantastic that it looks fake.

BTW, I am feeling better today. Perhaps it was the low barometric pressures that were contributing to the melancholy.


Discouraged and Melancholy

It amazes me that people manage to get together and stay together for any length of time. It seems to me that figuring out the logistics of personal standards of rhythm and space between two people is so discouraging as to be nearly insurmountable.


New Adventure

Just back from Moab, Utah. It was a blast. I went off-roading on an ATV for the first time. It was really fun and exciting. It would have been more fun if I hadn't had trouble with my hand cramping towards the end. Because the speed control is on a lever operated solely by the right thumb, by the time we were halfway through our 6 hour excursion, my thumb was starting to hurt. The next day, my right hand was not really working very well. I think it was a combination of the physical shocks my hand was taking as I held on to the handlebars and the grip I needed to manipulate the throttle lever. I've lost a bit of strength and dexterity in the hand, but I'm sure it's temporary. My hand difficulties meant that the next day I got to just ride along, rather than drive. Interestingly, I found it almost as entertaining, since I got to sightsee a bit more. The scenery was absolutely beautiful - red rocks and greenery against the bluest sky. The fact that I was strapped into a motorized 4WD vehicle with a helmet, goggles, and a lunatic driver just made it all the more vivid.
It was a really fun road trip. The car did very well. The extra space was really nice to have. The AC didn't really work (needs to be "charged"?) and the CD player only works when the car is cold, but other than that, it was great.


Meet Big D

About a month and a half ago, a car hit my car and did about $2500 worth of damage. My car being 12 years old and starting to look pretty dinged up (even before the accident), I decided to keep the money (plus a bonus I got from work) for a down payment on a "new" car. I never buy actual new cars, plus I like not having much of (if any) a car payment.
To my surprise, I found a car yesterday. He wants to be called "Big D" (the nickname of the USS Dallas, a submarine in The Hunt for Red October). He's a blue 2002 Subaru Impreza "Sport" WRX, with "all wheel drive," which was top of my list, along with small size. After I bought it, I realized I also got a bunch of cool modern features that I've never had before - a 6 CD changer, an alarm system (and one of those key chain lock button things - woo hoo!), a mirror that automatically dims when headlights are too bright behind you, wipers that you can change the delay speed on, etc. So cool!
Apparently, I went to the car dealer at the perfect time -- late in the day on a crappy, cold, sleety day. They hadn't sold many cars that day and were motivated to sell to me that day. I also traded in my car for a nominal amount (saves me from trying to have to sell it for probably about the same amount).
It'll be nice to have a new car on my road trip to Moab next weekend.


Too Fast!

The world is moving too fast right now. I had my birthday celebration last week and I haven't even blogged about it!

Here are the gorgeous flowers that my parents sent to the office on the day. They are still gracing my desk.
I got phone calls from friends and family and felt generally appreciated.
The squeeze and I went to the Buenos Aires Grill and had a yummy dinner.
My good friends had a birthday celebration on Sunday for me, with a beautiful and tasty cake. It was wonderful to spend time with them.
I got some cool DVDs and some biking gloves, but mostly it was the time spent with friends and family that I appreciated most.

Here's a little cuteness I meant to post after I got back from vacation: The cats making themselves at home in my half unpacked suitcase.