rowanf: (berries)

Rowan-in-Maelrosz-Shirt.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
The last week is a bit of a blur. I worked (though jetlag), had physical therapy, got a mammogram (scheduling lots of med as we ran through our deductible this year, darn the endochrinologist who decided to go on vac and bumped me to January) and slept when I could.

Thursday I didn't get off work until 3:30pm. I came home, slept for an hour and then we headed to Stephanie's traditional Xmas Eve dinner. It was lovely - great food and interesting conversation. There were nine of us this year, seven being veterans from previous years. It was nice to catch up, to engage the new folks and just generally be surrounded by good cheer.

Thursday we slept in and then went to see Sherlock Holmes. It was a loud, fast paced, modern action flick/buddy movie that happened to have two guys (and gal) with these classic names from Arthur Conan Doyle. I didn't hate it, but Jeremy Brett has nothing to worry about as the quintessential Holmes. Thursday evening we joined Denise & TC (and the same lovely couple with whom we had Thanksgiving whose names I have not learnt yet *sigh*) for a wonderful standing rib roast, parsnips, green beans, scalloped potatoes, mince meat pie and chocolate cake dinner with champagne and two 1985 cabernet savignons - a BV reserve and a Margaux something or other. Everyone else liked the BV best but I liked the Margaux better.

Today we got up and went over to talk to another furniture refinisher, this one with a shop in Campbell. Oh, I see I haven't mentioned that Russell is giving me refinishing of my dining room table for my birthday. <3<3<3 This guy seems very professional (37 years in the biz) and offers a decent price compared to the fairly disorganized amateur neighbor that we talked to earlier. The current one has an amazing museum in his shop dedicated to WWII pilots (of whom his father was one). He has a lot of period hardware and uniforms and all sorts of things. It is so cool when you run into someone with a passionate interest that they have really pursued.

Brigid & Fiona are supposed to be here for our annual holiday fondue dinner, so I'd better get off the computer!
rowanf: (Default)

Adelaide-street4.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
Thursday was my quiet day. Slept and read and played WoW. I am really not getting over my jet lag this time. Bah.

Today I had my follow-up visit with my doctor who thinks I'm doing fine for five weeks. Of course then he said "If you are still hurting in four months I'll worry." Gah! If I'm hurting in another four weeks I'll worry. And he says do take my meds. I really hate taking lots of pills. I'd rather be in nagging pain up to a point. *sigh* And yes, I've always been like this.

I did some grocery shopping and then met Russell at the Camera Cinemas 3:20 show of Avatar 3D. There are things I could cavil about, but wow, James Cameron and most of the big effects houses on the planet sure can create the eye candy. I want to go back and see it again but not in 3D just to see the difference. /me sits on her hands and gives no spoilers.

We stopped at Hawgs and had appetizers and drinks. I always forget how bloody expensive that place is, given the total lack of ambiance. On the way out a passing woman in the dark (I didn't see her at all) asked me for $2 for food. I said, "Sorry, all I have is a $5, that will have to do and gave it to her." She was amazingly grateful which made me feel awful. It is so little, I just paid $8.99 for a drink that tastes like key lime pie. But then she had to say "God bless you". Why do they always do that? I try to just accept it as a blessing but somehow in the context of panhandling it just squicks me.

I was supposed to have coven Yule tonight but things go complicated amongst my covenmates and we're just going to try and hit the public one on Sunday. I have managed to wrap exactly one present so far. I am fail at Yule this year. Too much going on!

Home again

Dec. 15th, 2009 09:37 pm
rowanf: (fox fairy)

Gyuto_Monks.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
So Monday Rachael and I got up and flew to Sydney, had a four hour layover and then flew home. We arrived back in California about an hour before we left... or something like that. *my head explodes* I guess we got back the Tuesday we lost. *grin* I spent the day napping and enjoying being home. I even played a bit of WoW with my library guild. Russell came home from work and we cooked up a nice dinner and caught up. I am so glad to be home to my family and my own, nice, warm waterbed.

This morning I worked on pictures from the Parliament and got them up in my flickrstream. I don't actually have that many, I was too busy taking video that isn't viewable. *facepalm* I should have stuck with my still camera! Having gotten them processed I went back at the CoG Interfaith blog and added pictures to some of my posts. Oooh, cool video up of Don's interview with Patheos is up.

I headed off to Jamba Juice on my way to the pharmacy to pick up some meds. I had the weirdest accident. This idiot pulled out in front of me (she was at a stop sign, I had none) and I stopped suddenly (having suspected she was an idiot). I grabbed for my juice and somehow poked the straw through the bottom of the cup. There was suddenly berry smoothie pouring out of my cup holder. Wah! Luckily I had an empty Dr. Pepper bottle and I managed to hold the hole over it until I got to the store and could finish decanting it. LOL

I am wishing that my shoulder would be better than it is. I keep hoping that I can stop taking meds, but it really hurts if I don't. I have a physical therapy appt tomorrow, we'll see if there has been any progress. I really need a massage actually. *sigh*

Tonight Russell and I went out and saw the new Disney movie, The Princess and The Frog. Oh my, I totally loved it. I liked the heroine, I loved, loved the zydeco fireflies in the Bayou. There was an evil Voodoo man and a wonderful, powerful Voodoo woman. There is music, peril, beauty and true love. *happy sigh* What more can one ask for in a fantasy?
rowanf: (bear Roszmairta)

FC&P9-4_018.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
The holiday weekend was quite fun. I spent a fair amount of it playing WoW. I'm enjoying my new server immensely. Also the rep in battlegrounds feature. My main did a fair number of instances and raids that she'd never have seen on her old server. My druid respecced for healing and spent a few days in BGs learning her addons... and made it to 60! My Tauren DK made it to 68 and headed to Northrend.

And I did my photo club in Second Life and got some fun shots. The one to the side is me in my "fish woman" outfit.

Sunday Erika & Russell & I went downtown to Tapesty in Talent. It has shrunk considerably since the last time I went down there. It was quite astonishing really. We enjoyed the fair food and the walking around in the lovely weather. Erika bought a fun lavender sun hat.

Then I took off and saw District Nine with [livejournal.com profile] mr_kurt and [livejournal.com profile] saffronrose and Arthur. It was a tough movie -- gritty and believable and astonishingly good science fiction. I recommend it.

Today I went to the Oko & Nena Feast and Devotional, celebrating the
bounty of the harvest and the wisdom of Grandmother Earth, that Loren & Diana put on for the House. We gathered and they gave talks on the two powers and then we set out the feast (roast goat, steak & chicken; amazing gumbo, black-eyed peas, ground turkey with yam & spinach casserole and other dishes that escape me at the moment. I didn't really expect to go out as they aren't powers with whom I work particularly. Evidently Nena needed more mouths as I was soon sitting and (so I'm told) eating everything in sight. My stomach agrees with that assessment. I am told I consumed a great deal of gumbo! And salad! And I didn't have any of the grilled steak I had brought even. I think my tastes and Nena's don't coincide very well. At least she only drank one beer. Anyway, I am home and overfull with memories of mud and long lazy rivers and not much else. I will have to do some altar work I think. I realized I don't have a necklace for either power but Diana & Sparrow have offered to remedy that for Nena & Oko respectively.
rowanf: (movie kiss)

rainbowgirl.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
Today Russell and I drove up to the City to see the film Milk at the Castro Theatre. It was hard getting up after a late night eating Denise's wonderful holiday dinner.

We got up there, parked, bought our tickets when the box office opened at 9am and then went across the street and had a lovely breakfast. Then we joined the line to get into the show. The movie is amazing, I thought it really captured the time. Russell thought the camera work a bit close and claustrophobic. It is true that it didn't show much of San Francisco in the 1970's other than historical footage. Seeing Anita Bryant again after all these years brought up so much of my own history. The haters are still with us, as Prop 8 clearly shows. I would definitely recommend this film and I think Sean Penn deserves an Oscar for his protrayal of Harvey Milk.

After the movie we wandered through A Different Light and then headed home. We are watching Harry Potter films (just finished Chamber of Secrets) which made a bit of a change from the morning's fare. I love holiday weekend movie marathons. *grin*
rowanf: (movie kiss)
Tuesday after another long day at work, I had a nice massage by the magical Tina. I can move my shoulders today. Then I hopped up from the table and went off to see Mongol, the first of a planned trilogy on the life of Temudgin, the boy who grows up to be the warrior Genghis Khan. This is the early years from the death of his father when he was nine to the battle which makes him Great Khan of the Mongols. The cinematography is sweeping with the stark landscape of the steppes which drawfs the yurts and herds of the people.

I liked the love story between him and his bride, Borte (who is actually played by a Mongolian actress). The filmmaker is Russian, Temudgin is played by a Japanese actor and his rival Jamukha by a Chinese one -- it is quite an international production. I liked the way they dealt with the magical parts of the legend - his encounters with the sky-God Tengri and the "knowing" of Borte when the monk dies.

There has been some quibbling about the historicity of the script which is based on the writings of Russian historian Lev Gumilyov (as interpreted by the scriptwriters). As a member of the Dark Horde of the SCA, I probaby know more about the historical Temujin than most Americans. I thought it was well within the scope of the legend. I look forward to the other two films if they manage to make them.
rowanf: (Default)

Lincolnball7-11_009.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
I got back from Las Vegas and Russell and I went to a movie as we're waaay behind on the summer movies! We saw Get Smart which was much better than I expected and quite a fun romp. Tuesday we saw Wanted which I hated - there were no sympathetic characters and lots of graphic violence.

The week was really busy at work with lots of searches and a patent meeting. And I have a presentation next week that I really need to work on. But I keep getting other things. Gah!

Thursday we had our Pagan singing group, including a new member who found us searching yahoo groups for south bay folks. She is newly moved to the area and seems quite nice. She brought a song from Circle Round, which was great.

Friday the carpets got cleaned so I spent most of the day with all the doors and windows open and no air conditioning. At least the heat meant the carpets dried pretty well and didn't smell quite as bad. Erika was there and we hung out together in the morning. She headed off to see a friend's son defend his climbing championship. I did the Friday SL Flickr collaborators shoot which was lingerie shoot this time. Fun! In the evening I did fireworks for a reprise of the ball on Land of Lincoln that we had done for the history conference. This time it was open to everyone and we had lots of attendees (about 50 concurrent with folks coming and going).

Saturday was a work day at the Umbanda House. I took my tools but it was working on a small shed and really only two people could effectively be inside at a time. But I did drive a few nails and pull down some boards for replacing. And I brought sandwiches. *grin*

Sunday was a Sacred Connection one-day event and it was here in the south bay which was a nice change. It was over toward Los Altos and I had a brilliant idea of hitting Maltby's for lunch on the way... except I didn't know it was the Art & Wine Festival weekend so there was no parking to be had. *sigh* I did stop at Draeger's (they were guarding their parking lot from festival goers) and got a key lime pie to take to the one-day. I grabbed a bite up on El Camino since I hadn't had breakfast or lunch and it was getting on to noon.

Monday, lots more work and dancing in the evening. We did some veil work which really got my shoulder (which for no apparent reason was already hurting). Bah. This getting older/creaky body thing sucks, y'know?
rowanf: (Default)

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Originally uploaded by rowanf.
I feel like I should writing something but since I haven't *done* much except lie around and feel awful there isn't alot to say. Went back to BayCon long enough to buy next year's membership... hopefully I'll enjoy it more then. Russell and I went to see Indiana Jones which was as unhistoric and lacking in any notions of recognizable archaelogy as ever... but it was loud and fun and I liked it.

I went to work today for about six hours. How I'm resting, about to take a nap. Tonight there are 14 people here for Tuesday dinner. We're having steak on the grill. Hopefully I can recruit folks to help out if I'm not feeling up to standing at the grill. And someone else can tear the lettuce, I'm sure *I* wouldn't want my hands all over it. *sigh*

Oh, well. I do feel better than yesterday and I pretty much *have* to feel better tomorrow. So things are looking up. *grin* Besides Scar took me on a ride around Cathedral this morning on a paper airplane... how fun is that!
rowanf: (movie kiss)

ironman2_023.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
After my usual SL morning, Kurt, Arthur, Russell and I tried to head off to the Maker Faire. Alas, we had no idea how popular it was! After driving to San Mateo and finally parking a couple of miles away and waiting for a shuttle bus for another while... we decided to bail. Perhaps next year I'll give it a go again... starting much earlier. At 5pm, Marina joined us to see Iron Man.

I have been having way too much fun with the Iron Man avatar in Second Life. I took a lot of pictures for the Silverscreen photo contest but I didn't place. The movie was very well done and I'm glad to have had the added dimension of SL.
rowanf: (fox ranger)

Christchurch2.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
So we have been in Christchurch for a couple of days. There isn't any great event or sight about which to write. We have seen the Cathedral (our hotel is right off Cathedral Square). There is a crafts market in the square which has some interesting artists. Today they had some young "street artists" doing a mural together as part of a city program.

Yesterday morning I had a long chat with one of the greenstone carvers at the craft market. He sells his carved stones but he also sells a lot of bone carvings and such. He says he designs those but has them carved elsewhere so they are affordable (relatively!). I bought a bone Taniwha that spoke to me. The carver said it is the fresh water kind and I think that it fits in with the water advocacy work I have been doing to have a guardian Taniwha pendant. In the afternoon yesterday, I did a fair bit of shopping for greenstone bits and finally found the triple twist earrings I had been wanting. So shopping is finished too.

I have gotten a couple of caches (and DNF'd one). We went walking in the Botanical Gardens (mostly to get a cache). All the TBs and geocoins are now dispersed and I left off carrying my caching bag to lighten my load today.

We decided not to take a punting tour down the river (they don't let you wield the pole yourself but have a professional chauffeurs in a straw boater and striped coat to pole you along) since the river looked unshaded and not so interesting. It was almost 80F today and in the sun it was very hot.

This afternoon we went up the gondola to the top of a mountain. It was fairly hazy though so I doubt our pictures amount to much. But we ate at the cafe and took in the views. I found a some cards and then a book by Gerar Toye, the "Global Gypsy". I love his work!

We grabbed dinner at a souvlaki place. As usual I was disappointed - my souvlaki tastes were educated at Icarus/Hector's in DC/VA and I think if I really want to have it like I like it I am going to have to learn to make it. I plan to start forthwith. Well, soon, once I'm back in my own kitchen. The fact that my area is deficit in Greek food means that I don't get that button pushed very often.

Then we went to the cinema and saw Juno which we had been meaning to do and it was really quite good. I would never have made her choices, but I believed in the character's integrity and spirit a great deal. I think my parents feared that I would show up pregnant at that age. I wouldn't have, my wildness went in other directions, but that was a fear my mother had for sure. I loved the conversation between the parents after she had told them. I think I will be thinking about this movie for a long time.

So, tomorrow we fly from Christchurch to Auckland and then Auckland to home. We will travel for many hours and get home before we started. Somehow I doubt that will make us feel less tired. I can't wait to get inworld. I suspect sleeping and Second Life will be in competition when I get home. There is a big literary event going on inworld that I have carefully not volunteered for anything around but if I am up to it I hope to attend. I am sure both my avatar's IMs are capped by now. It has been sooooo frustrating!
rowanf: (Default)

venkabeaupty_119.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
Sunday Russell and I went to see Charlie Wilson's War which was quite a sweeping story about a congress critter from Texas and how he was able to get money for the Afghans when they were fighting the Russians and how he was unable to get any for reconstruction. A familiar tale. It is based on a true story and it rings true. But it isn't at all grim, it is enjoyable and well written.

Monday we hung out and Erika joined us after her time at folk music camp up in the Santa Cruz mountains. We went to someone's New Year's Eve party in Hayward where a lot of our friends were going. The hosts seemed like very nice folks and there were tons of people there (the evite said 135 but I'd guess more like 80 which is plenty!). One of the hosts also has a NYE birthday so there was plenty of cake and celebrating the birthday people as well. Russell has a great birthday and Erika & I had a fun party. I was the designated driver and got us all home safely around 2am. So this morning we slept in and I spent a bit of time inworld. Russell and I walked to a new cache about a mile from our house and it was a beautiful day for a walk. The weather was sunny and probably almost 60F, I was sorry I took a jacket since I wound up carrying it.

Soon Brigid & Fiona will come by for our traditional holiday fondue dinner, a bit later than usual what with college and work and holidays.
rowanf: (movie kiss)
My imagination was insufficient to imagine how bad a movie National Treasure: Book of Secrets could be. I wasn't expecting much... but wow. [livejournal.com profile] mr_kurt opined the writer's strike must have started early. They took all the worst parts of the first movie and magnified them. The plot holes are enormous, the action unbelievable and what's up with the ancient cities all using oil channels that people with torches/flares can come and illuminate the treasure with. That hasn't evaporated or dried to sludge in 300 years or anything. *shakes head* Wow. Please, don't bother. The first movie was a bit of a romp and I was willing to give them a second chance. Bad idea.

OTOH, it was a fairly warm night and I got to ride Big Eli, the ferris wheel, one last time. Tomorrow is the last day of the Winter Wonderland. If it isn't awful perhaps I will ride again. Ferris wheels make me very happy. My whole self goes "Wheeeeeee!" I do realize that sounds daft. Nevertheless, wheeeeeee!!!!
rowanf: (Default)

cleveland_012.jpg
Originally uploaded by rowanf.
Happy Thanksgiving! I am thankful to nine hours of uninterrupted sleep. I am really looking forward to an essentially lazy weekend.

Beowulf was worth seeing, I think, if one is interested in animation and likes myth tales. The most disconcerting thing for me was that I thought the women looked like the princesses in the last Shrek. They did a wonderful dragon though.

Oh dear. The Mexican oompa music just started up next door. I hope we don't have that all day. The neighbor's capacity for that music is really something. *sigh* But they turn it off by 10pm every night so we don't have a noise complaint. Just a crazy-making amount of noise.
rowanf: (Default)
Saturday night Owl Moon, with the help of Dark Forest and the Bambiland drummers, put on the NROOGD open sabbat at the Palo Alto Unitarian hall. It took a lot of work. But I think it really came off well. With 64 non-rehearsed participants plus the 15-16 of us in the crew the 40'x80' hall was a little small since we'd divided it in half with a veil and had a maze on one side for the World of the Dead and the other half was the living side. So it was a bit cozy at times when we were all in a circle on one side. But other than that I think it worked really well. The maze was fabulous and the drummers were awesome. I had a very profound time being Lady Death, greeting each person as they crossed the veil and trying to say just the thing they needed to hear before walking the maze so that they would get the most out of the experience. Everyone worked really hard on preparation and was totally there for the ritual. What a great community I have! I feel especially blessed and like we really turned the wheel.

On Sunday [livejournal.com profile] mr_kurt and [livejournal.com profile] saffronrose and I went to see Gone with the Wind which was showing as a tie-in to Moonlight & Magnolias. Wow. It hadn't seen it in years and it was really appalling on so many levels. I think I was scarred as a young woman by its portrayals of Southern womanhood in this book/film. It was interesting to realize.

I am still plugging away at Second Life. I haven't yet run into the librarians there, although I have been enjoying checking out what they've built on Info Island. I have also enjoyed going dancing at a club and otherwise checking out various regions. My current fret is that I really want some eyebrow pencil and that isn't in the makeup palette - when you have magenta hair you really need to darkening your eyebrows!

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