Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Thanksgiving in Dublin

Teach the Irish how to go for thirds, that's it Since the beginning of college, every Thanksgiving I've spent has been with a different set of 'family'. I never left Pasadena while in college and so spent spent each year with a different set of members of Ricketts Hovse. Slowly the classes changes, and one year I even got to spend with Matt (a fellow member of the HBC). After college, I slowly I collected more and more people starting with just Jaime, then Jaime with Lexi and Andrew, and then actually getting the entire Basteel Clan to meet the Peters Clan.

This year was very different from the previous ones.

Cherie is getting her Masters degree at Trinity College in Dublin. This means that she's stuck in the Old World where they don't really know about Thanksgiving (or at least that's what I thought in August). So I figured I would use it as an excuse to go visit Ireland and see if I couldn't give her some family and American traditions to with which to enjoy the holiday.

Turns out there are a number of Americans studying there and they had plans to set up a large Thanksgiving dinner amongst the Trinity folk, so all I had to pack for the trip was Pumpkin Pie and Cranberry sauce in a can. Seems they don't have those in Ireland, so I got the bring a bit of the New World to the Old in the form of squash and preservatives.

But Cherie's got a great group of friends out there. They took the the American traditions well, and with just the right amount of resistance to anything from the States. There was tons of everything, including the wine. That's another part of the week. Apparently they drink a lot in Ireland. Who'ld have guessed. I got right pissed (drunk for those in the States) every night I was there. Good times.

The time in Dublin went by in a blur. The highlights were:

  • The Jameson Distillery
  • Getting my favorite Irish Whiskey Green Spot
  • Seeing a Medival Crypt
  • The Book of Kells(?)
  • Dublin Castle
  • Trying to find a battery for my camera
  • Fish and Chips
  • An impromptu snowball fight in an unlikely Dublin snowfall
  • And so many other things I can't even remember

Thanks Cherie. I think there will need to be a spring trip, so keep an eye on your calendar.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Monday, November 14, 2005

"He has better taste than I do"

Best compliment I've recieved in a while. Thanks.

And thanks Jaime for playing Carson.

Wet Butt

Nothing quite sucks like having a wet ass in the morning. Maybe I'll remember to put the cover on my bike tonight so tomorrow starts off a little better.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Camping and Climbing at Courtright Reservoir

Mike, P-Wood and I wandered out into the wilderness this weekend. It was originally going to be an ICO trip, with some extra fun. Slowly the number of participants dwindled and the extra fun that would void ICO insurance policies grew, until it was just the three of us, and turned into a great personal trip.

Courtright Reservoir is in the Sierras just south of Yosemite. Thankfully, they haven't yet gotten enough snow to close down the roads that run into the national forest there. Of course since that was iffy it turns out we were the only people there. This made it incredibly quiet. Like quiet in a deep all encompasing silence. I really can't do justice to the sense, but even the wildlife was silent.

But the area is an amazing collection of granite peaks all within a couple of miles of each other, and all next to an amazing lake. It was seriously possible to walk a mile or two from the parking lot to climbing that appeared to be every bit as good as yosemite, but with no one working out their relationships above you on the mountain. (I really hope those 2 broke up after being so disruptive).

The first night we spent scrambilng up some class 4 rocks and got to bust out my new toy (a 60m super-dry rope) to help P-Wood. And we spent the night camping at the top of the rock. The fog had been rolling in and was really thick, so sitting on the top it was like the world ended 20 feet in any direction. And it was cold. Like super butt-fucking cold. Like waking up with 1 liter nalgenes frozen nearly solid. But I learned that my +10° bag really is pretty comfortable in those temperatures. And when we woke up we had an amazing few of the lake and surrounding peaks.

And the next day we wandered around on a day hike, where I did some really stupidly ricky moves that got a look from Mike I had never seen before. I interpretted it (correctly mind you) as "He's not a participant, he's an adult. If he wants to do something that stupid it's between him and the river below". Anyway, I survived it fine, and Mike even let me run the traverse later. Though in fairness he had be recite a verbal will with P-Wood witnessing.

Anyway, despite some schadenfreude with me learning to throw a rope over a cliff, the rest of the walk went pretty uneventfully, and we set up some tents so that we could stave off the cold and get a good nights sleep.

Which was very useful, since at 6:00a.m. I started up my camp stove and made some coffee to get Mike out of bed, and by 9:00a.m. we where out on a mountain, and I was getting my first outdoor lead climb in. It was a little (read very) scary to be going up setting my own protection in. And the climb was easy enough to be gentle, but was still rough enough to give me some serious fear in a couple of parts. Well enough for me to be very tense and really do a number on one of my knuckles.

But the lead went well, and I got to do my first rappel down a mountain which was pretty sweet as well.

After that we got back, cooked breakfast, packed up, and headed home. I am going to sleep well tonight.

Keith is Lame

I haven't posted anything in a while. Well, I'm going to try to rectify that. While I can say that I have been busy at work getting blogs into the site, it's mostly been a wild couple of weeks, and I'm happy. Actually I'm not going to go into all the details, but what I will say is that about the seventh most interesting thing that happened during those two weeks was running into Marylin Manson at an art gallery.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

And the Hangover Passes

Scotchtoberfest 2005 was a great success. While smaller than previous years I think that we did well, and that it was a good farewell to Montgomery St (Lexi and Andrew have their huge place in the city, and I don't expect I'll be here next year either). I made it through the entire night. And I remember very little of it. There was no actuall lamp shade on my head, but I did nock my electric keyboard over several times.

The scotches where superb, and since I hosted, this year I keep the booty. Sweet. Though that comes with the responsibility of hosting parties to consume it in the following year, so I've got quite the task in front of me. And I managed to maintain consciousness right through to the end of the evening. Though it helps that no one wanted to go for Karaoke, because I don't think I was making it out of the house.

And I'm proud to say, I'm still not old enough to have a two day hangover. I may have just jinxed myself, but after 12 hours of Firefly on Saturday, I was feeling much better.


My Camera