It's baseball season, folks, and I'm living in a baseball town. Let the good times roll!
Okay, well, maybe not really. I mean, the Mariners aren't very good. They sort of remind me of my hapless Pirates: a ball club with not enough money and not enough talent. The baseball field, however, is amazing, and the very big benefit of having a not-so-great team is that tickets are cheap. Lorelei and I went to a game through her school on May 4 (Happy Birthday, Jack!). It was really fun and I foresee the Shraders hitting the baseball field more as summer arrives.
Our seats were toward the top, but it wasn't too bad, we could see pretty much everything. If you enlarge this picture, you will be able to see the Space Needle out the other side of the stadium.
This display is made of baseball bats. It's at the main entrance to the stadium. Pretty cool. I loved it. I think that baseball might come alive for me again out here. Oh, and did I mention that Mike McCready played the National Anthem at this game?!? Mike McCready! From Pearl Jam! Just wandered into a more than half empty stadium on a cold night in May and played the Anthem. Sure, why not? I love that. There are a few celebs here who are very much a part of the community. Eddie Vedder, too. (Um, he lives less than a mile from our house.)
Lorelei loved the game, too. Though for different reasons:
Nothing like a bunch of elementary school kids hopped up on cotton candy. Whew.
At the game we went to, the Mariners played the Twins. The Mariners were up by 2 runs by the time Lorelei and I left in the 7th. Of course by the time we got home they had lost the lead and the game. <sigh>
Next up was Mother's Day. We spent the morning at the West Seattle Farmer's Market. The picture above is Megan and Dave - friends out here in West Seattle. Dave is a friend of Shawn and Ed's from Toledo. He and Shawn went to high school together and Dave and Ed were in a band together. How funny - if Toledo's population goes down, it's because they all moved here. Ha!
After the market, we went to the park. It was a glorious day, complete with soaking feet in the Sound and swings and playing on the beach.
The above picture was taken from one of the trails we followed in the park.
A meadow on the same trail.
The water! (A bit chilly!!)
Big playing on the driftwood. It was a lovely day!
After mother's day, it was crazy work until May 20 when I left for a conference in Palm Springs/La Quinta, California. I was gone for about 4 days. It was a jam-packed 4 days of seminars, receptions, networking, dinners, and becoming more educated about what goes on in my line of work. I found it very educational (believe it or not) and enjoyed some of the seminars a lot. I also liked meeting people that I had worked with but never met; it's always good to put a face with a name.
But that's really just a cover for the fact that I was in constant awe of being in southern California and in the desert. It was nice to stay at this fabulous resort, but the overwhelming part of the whole thing was that I absolutely fell in love with the desert.
This is the resort. Pretty much what it looked like outside my room. Very nice. They were having a May heat wave, though. Temps were about 106 degrees each day that we were there. They came down right after we left into the 80s and 90s, but yeah, well over a 100 each day we were there. Telling yourself it's a "dry heat" only gets you so far. At about 105, who cares. It was damn hot.
I also got to see Pauline, whom I worked with at MDK. I have missed her so much - it was fabulous seeing her. For all who who know her - she looks amazing and is doing great! I'll have pictures next time!
One night we went to a dinner in the desert. We had the opportunity to go on jeep tours of the desert and they also had some amateur astronomer with his telescope (oh, how I hate to say it, but Shawn's is bigger and better), and we saw Saturn and its rings. Very, very clear sky. It's hot in the desert, but once the sun goes down, it's really different. I fell in love with the formations and stark landscape. It's just so different than anything I've ever seen.
The above formation is Elephants walking in the desert. My angle isn't great but you can see the front "elephant" - see the trunk?
The sun is beginning to set here. Just gorgeous.
You might have to click on this one to make it bigger to see it, but it's the desert wave. Pretty amazing.
Perhaps the most striking part for me was that we were on the San Andreas Fault line. There are these lines of vegetation that you can see kind of traveling through the desert - that's what our guide said was the actual fault line. Everyone got a lesson in plate tectonics, which of course, I loved. I can't wait to bring Shawn and Lorelei to the desert.
We are starting to make our plans. The shock of moving has worn off and things are beginning to settle down. We are planning to hit the Washington coast, Olympic National Park and of course, my beloved Hurricane Ridge in August. I think...maybe if we can swing it...during Lorelei's mid-winter break in February, we'll go to Hawaii, or southern California. I'm sure Yellowstone and Yosemite are next up.
It's perfect timing that today is Memorial Day, as I'm struck by how amazing and different this country is. We are truly fortunate to be able to see as much of it as we are. I wish everyone could experience this. My eternal gratitude to those who sign up to protect it for us.
Love and blessings to all!