santa cruz wharf

28 June 2009

down by the Boardwalk…down by the sea-ee-ee

I tend to complain about tourists during Tourist Season.  Not sure why so many who vacation to Surf City forget to pack their common sense.

On the flip side, I admit there are some really cool things to do here…and many of them are free.

Friday night during the summer there are concerts in front of the Boardwalk…right on the beach.  From where I am it’s a short walk through the neighborhood and across the trestle, over the river to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

2009.06.26 river view post    2009.06.26 tretle post
The concerts always bring a good crowd, but this week was something else. 

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The Boardwalk and the beach were packed to see the Gregg Rolie Band.  As lead singer of Santana, Rolie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was also one of the founding members of the band, “Journey”.  The band played songs from both and a few songs of their own.

(I feel as if I am about to start channeling an episode of
Bond’s Tuneage Tutelage

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It was a very cool concert and I’m looking forward to the rest of the series.  A lot of people brought little picnics…with typical picnic treats…back at the ranch we had to satisfy the craving. 
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Another way fun event was the annual “Bikes on the Bay” Vintage Motorcycle Show.  Hundreds of pre-1985 American, British, European, and Japanese motorcycles and scooters.  It was pretty crowded around all the bikes and booths.  Some interesting, some innovative, even some junk.  Accessories, clothing, parts…and a really great BBQ with Marie Callender’s for dessert.

This wasn’t just a show for garage queens…there were quite a few street worn bikes. Here are just a few which caught my eye..

I have to admit…there really are a few good things about Tourist Season.

24 June 2009

a thank you, a shout out, and a hat tip

Tomorrow I’ll recap the trip to Portland…but today I wanted to send out a personal post of triple thanks.

Thank you for your encouragement.
Thank you for the presents.
Thank you for the recipe.

Earlier this week on my morning walk through the harbor, I came upon a dramatically tragic scene. 
David of authorblog has encouraged my photography and taught me the value of always having the camera with me.  There weren’t many people around…and I was the only person with a camera who was not with law enforcement.

Subsequently the local paper used my photographs on line and in print.  I asked that my name not be used…not because I am humble…but I didn’t want to come up on some google search associated with this particular circumstance.  The news guy has expressed interest in using other photographs I may have.

While I was getting ready to put together this post…I found out David had gifted me with his
Post Of The Day for “the fathers”.  I am honored for the acknowledgment…and I love meeting the new people who surf over from his site.  I have found many weblogs via his POTD choices as well. 

David  is not only a professional photographer,  published novelist, and rather prolific blogger…he is a very encouraging mentor to many of us out here in the world wide weblog world.  Thank you David.

I also want to give a shout out to Dana at Amid Life’s Crises.  I have participated in three weblog book drawings recently.  I actually won at Dana’s!!  Not only did she send “UnCommon“  by Tony Dungy…she also included a really cute bookmark…and a READING LIGHT which I absolutely love.  Dana is a strong intelligent woman who is in the midst of some major life choices.  Her battles on behalf of her son and herself are frequently heart tugging…and always thought provoking.  Thank you Dana!

Last but not least…a quick hat tip to
Hammer.  His irreverent and edgy posts are a cover for a great father and husband….and what seems to be an amazing man in the kitchen.  I have a dear friend from my past in town this week…so I tried Hammer’s  most recent recipe for “Baked Potato Soup” tonight…and it was a HIT !   I will definitely make it again.  The first time I used one of his recipes was almost exactly a year ago he gave out his Vidalia Onion Dip.  I have made this for parties and potlucks several times to rave reviews. Thanks Hammer.

These are just a few reasons why I am very grateful for the weblog world!

21 June 2009

the fathers

As I looked through these pictures I was struck how very little these men have in common…these men who play the role of “Father” in my life.

my own father
my grandfathers
my step father
and the fathers of my children

k y dad(please note:  even as a one year old my eyes automatically closed when the shutter opened.  )

bw donI’m going to see my Father later this week for some paper signing.  It has been quite some time since we have been together.  For most of my life, family wisdom was that my sister is artistic, kind, and curly like our mother…and that I am our “father’s daughter. ”

camping donI do carry my Father’s strong genetic imprint.  My countenance, my temperament and my talents come from him.  My brother and I both.  Ironically, it was in my Father’s grief-ignited breakdown 
to make our life situations identical, which resulted in our estrangement.

My childhood and teenage years were pretty great. I grew up in a wonderful home with many FOBadvantages.  Month long vacations to national parks and family events were a 
priority. There was never any question that each of us would be sent to college.  And while it was a Father-mandated location… it was also a parental-funded education. My Father was a life long engineer…an intelligent and generous man.  There was never any doubt that he loved me, my brother, and my sister.

This is my first Fathers’ Day without a living Grandfather…and my Mama’s first Fathers’ Day without her Father. (funny guy below on the left) If you’ve been around here the past year you’ve read a few posts about the man he was and his legacy for our family.

I was named after my Father’s Father. (funny guy above on the right)  His first name was Clare…my middle name is Claire.  He taught me about the railroad…and how to fish. His example of love for my Grandmother taught me how a husband should be.  He was always trying to set me up with some young man in town. I haven’t posted about him much…he has been gone a long time now.  I will have to remedy this oversight.  
After church I met the fam and pjsome friends for brunch at one of my StepFathers’s favorite hangouts… the restaurant at the local golf course.  They have great food…but the interior design is that of a 1970’s retirement home cafeteria. 

My StepFather hasn’t ever actually played golf.  But he does have some very specific restaurant criteria. He knows the guy who runs the place…so we always get seated no matter how crowded…they have a full bar…and “the waitresses have good breasts.” 

FD don Little Missy and The Cub have each grown into pieces of their Father.  He still calls for advice or to lament over something one of the kids have going on.  I am the go-to-girl for medical issues, school, and affairs of the heart. He knows they both call me to help convince him to do something they want.  I’d like to think I play the role of advocate and peacemaker… but it is more accurate to think along the lines of a sneaky, double-crossing, secret agent. 

043SugarCookie’s Father is the only man who convinced me to marry…and he was barely out of boyhood at the time.  We have been divorced for almost twenty years. We see each other at graduations, funerals, and when our daughter srp davisneeds both of us.  My daughter is an awful lot like her Dad..which is mostly a good thing.  smile.  Thank God she takes after me where baseball is concerned (Go Giants!) I don’t know what I would do if I had given birth to a Dodger fan. He and I talk when there is something really good or really bad to discuss.  He is the father who made me a mother… and for that I am eternally grateful.

Wishing all of you Fathers a very Happy Day!

19 June 2009

getting clear

I’ve had a bit of experience with the healing of physical illness and injury.  I have just about zero experience with emotional injury.

It is very difficult for me to have that sense of helplessness you feel when someone you care about is emotionally injured.  

I don’t like being helpless.
I am gifted with strength and ability and faith.
I want to help. To heal.
To be there no matter what.

I listen to them explain their behavior.
Sometimes I am accepting.  

Other times I have to ‘fess up… that um… yeah…
I know it is a deception. 

They believe they deceive for self protection.
Self preservation even. 
But it is deception all the same.

A group effort…others came to their defense…confiding in me how their past hurt them deeply. Stripped them of their beloved lifestyle. Taken away their security and self-esteem. 

The others thought I should be different…but I was being me. The others didn’t like how I am…they called me bossy and pushy.  My presence meant that the others lost influence and were no longer in control. The others were not happy. 
Wild child wisdom pointed out it is not unusual for twenty percent to dislike how I am. It no longer mattered what the others thought. 

I tried being katherine-lite. While my heart ached to see evidence of the emotional damage… I avoided the wounds. I sidestepped the landmines. 

I allowed the deception.

But those type of wounds don’t just heal up or go away by themselves.  When the pain from their past makes a guest appearance in the present, it is so intense, the fragile facade they have built starts to come apart.

As the cracks begin to show, their cover up of choice is anger. Feeling out of control, they lash out.  They fester over what life has dealt them. 
Loved ones to worry about. Financial uncertainty. Hopes dashed. Long range plans derailed. 

Their internal turmoil becomes malignant. 
They scramble destructively to control whatever detail of their life they can.

They have so much pain they can’t control…they start to self-inflict pain that they can.

There is this point in time where I regain clarity…when I yet again point out….gently…and not so gently…what is true…and what is not. 

And with authentic love in my heart…I can no longer accommodate the deception.

I am learning the hard way what I already knew. 

When you allow yourself to be incorporated into deception… you will either become a deceiver…or ultimately… you will be deceived.

13 June 2009

The Tour ~ Pendleton to Portland

Although we truly enjoyed the cowboy town of Pendleton, Oregon, I was looking forward to heading out to Portland.  Just over 200 miles away we had friends and family to visit there.

p tour 0220 Along the way we drove by a tree farm.  Miles and miles and MILES of this tree farm.  I have to admit I was amazed.  I took dozens of pictures.  I only included a few in this post…but really it was incredible to see.

Although I had been through the Columbia River Gorge as a teenager, I did not remember the dramatic landscape. Cutting 4000 feet into the Cascade Mountain Range, The Gorge runs about 80 miles along the boundary between the Oregon and Washington States.

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The area generates significant electricity from both wind and water.  I am intrigued by the shapes of various powerline towers, hence the photos.  We made several stops along the way, reading various historical landmarks. 

Salmon fishing humans have lived in the Gorge for 10,000 years.  It has been the well traveled route for American Indians,  Lewis and Clark, steamboats, railroads, freight haulers, and
The Teamster’s Five-O Tour.

One destination just outside of Portland was Multnomah Falls. 

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Jeff, of A Word In Edgewise, had first suggested we stop there.  Coincidently DOT (Dad of Teamster) also thought we would enjoy Multnomah.  They had visited the falls on a previous trip and remembered it fondly.

Multnomah Falls was beautiful indeed. It is the second tallest year round waterfall in the nation, dropping 620 feet. We hiked up to the midpoint bridge to get the full effect.  By our clothing, it was obvious we were riding a motorcycle.  The gear can be a conversation starter with other riders.  It also causes some rather disconcerting stares.  The Teamster is kinda badass with his shaved head and shades.  However, I look rather dorky…not scary or mean. But still we get the looks.

Once in the Portland area we repeated our established routine, to find a bar or diner
to have a little snack and fire up the laptop to surf for
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We settled in the Oregon City area at a little place right on the river.

(again…photos by both me and The Teamster)

The Tour ~ Boise to Pendleton

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After watching the Memorial Day event in downtown Boise, we took a quick walk around the state capitol grounds. 

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French Canadian trapping and small scale silver mining both played a role in bringing settlers to the tree lined valley.

During the Civil War.  the United States established Fort Boise to help protect from massacres along the Oregon Trail.

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We were taking our time until the local stores opened. We needed to get a replacement screw for my face shield.  Surprisingly, High Desert Harley Davidson was less than helpful….although they did tell us three times that they are the largest Harley dealership in the north west.  That’s nice. 

One of the mechanics did steer us to
Cycle Gear of Meridian Idaho.  The young woman there was VERY helpful.  Not only did she dig through her inventory to find the right screw…she gave me two so that they would match.  (I was just not keen on one being black and one being silver…it would have messed with my mind for miles.)  AND….she didn’t charge us. (I need to send them a note praising her customer service….)

Geared up, we headed towards Pendleton, Oregon. This September will the be 100th
Pendleton Round-Up where the town’s populations booms from 25,000 to over 100, 000. It looks like a great time.

Pendleton Underground Tour of their historical redlight district would have been fun.  However it was completely sold out. Apparently bus loads of tourists come for the one or two weekends a year they do the tours in full vintage costume. 

We had a wonderful dinner at
Hamley’s Steak house. I could have spent a fortune at their western goods store…but there was no room on the motorcycle. smile.

Photographs for this post were contributed by both The Teamster and myself…

(note: this was the only leg of The Tour with an alternate sponsor…due to regional unavailability of the primary sponsor. )