I have no words to go with this post right now because writing will make me cry, crying gives me a headache, and I’ve had a headache all week (from crying). When my heartache is a little more bearable, I will post my memories of my beautiful, courageous oldest sister. Meanwhile, here is a slideshow Ally and I put together for Maria’s funeral.
I’m not so great at making New Year’s resolutions, but I set a goal during December last year that I would travel more miles by human power than by machine in 2014. And yes, bicycles technically are machines, but the energy to move them comes from humans. So. I’m pretty far behind so far because I drove way too much in January and I flew to Seattle. However, I will figure out my car and airplane miles and try to compensate by biking, running, swimming, walking, etc. Go human power!
So, almost a year ago I said I’d start doing more blog posts and … nothing. I didn’t do it. Sorry. One of the biggest events in my life the past year was my graduation on June 9, 2011, from the University of Washington’s Master of Library and Information Science program (or, using acronyms, I received an MLIS degree from UW). So I’m a real, live librarian. Sort of. I have the piece of paper, but it hasn’t magically transformed into a job yet. Anyone out there want to hire a smart, hardworking librarian?
The unemployment deal has been pretty discouraging, but back to graduation: My mom and dad came to celebrate with me and spend a few days in Seattle. It was lovely.
Meg wanted me to make it clear that we’re not spending all our vacation at the Rodeway mentioned in the previous post. So here’s the view from the Oceanside, Ore., condo she rented for a couple of nights — a huge improvement, right? The beach is fabulous, and we are planning a Tillamook cheese curd run this afternoon. It’s not the worst vacation ever, just to be clear.
Meg took a couple of days off immediately following Labor Day, so we decided to head for the Oregon coast for some r&r (not that an unemployed library school grad needs much more than a good book for that). Anyway, we decided to head out after church and stay in Portland for one night to cut down on travel time Monday. Since Meg brought her doggies along, we needed a pet-friendly hotel — preferably a cheap one. Meg found one online and reserved it, so we were all set. I don’t think the picture does the place justice, as you can’t tell that our room window is 10 feet from a strip club. Across the street there were two day cares, a booze shop and an off-track betting joint. Oh, and a really creepy guy met us at the entrance and tried to get extra friendly with Meg. I guess that’s what we get.
Usually I fly home to visit my family during the holidays, but because I’m going to be spending a few months with my parents, I decided to drive down so I could take more stuff and have my own car while I’m there. I left Seattle at about 1 p.m. Wednesday afternoon, and things went well for the first nine hours or so. There was a little bit of ice on the road outside La Grande, Oregon, but nothing too scary. I got to Boise around 10 p.m. and was feeling pretty alert, so I decided to drive a little farther.
Just outside of Glenn’s Ferry, Idaho, I saw a huge raccoon in the road. I swerved to go behind it, but the critter turned around and ran right in front of my car. THUNK! THUNKETY THUNK THUNK! Continue reading ‘Run-in with a raccoon’
This weekend was entirely free — no lectures, no transferring to different hotels, no suggested day trips, etc. — so I spent a couple of days exploring the area surrounding Rotterdam. Since I traveled mostly by train yesterday, today was a day for biking. The late summer weather was lovely, so it was a perfect day for it.
Trent left this weekend free for self-directed exploration, so a lot of people from the group here decided to go to Brugge, Belgium. A few of us stayed in Rotterdam to explore the surrounding area, though, and I am one of them. Today was kind of rainy, so I ditched my bike in favor of the train and went to Utrecht with Poppy and Jonathan. Trent has told us it is one of his favorite cities, and we could see why. The city isn’t too big, but there are a lot of interesting things to see and do. We actually ran out of time, so I’ll have to go back someday.
One of my favorite things to do when I travel is to climb towers, so I was delighted to discover that the tallest tower in the Netherlands is the Domtoren in Utrecht. Continue reading ‘Utrecht’