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Tuesday, January 23, 2001

I feel terribly behind today. I was looking back over the weblog and realizing how much I'd left out!

Last week, a semi drove into the state capitol building. I saw it on the news so I decided to call my mom in Sac and see what was up. She hadn't heard anything. Turns out I got my news faster in San Jose than she got it in the city the news was happening in. Eh, whatever. The long and the short of it was that a guy committed a weird sort of suicide by driving his truck into the side of the capitol in his Dick Simon truck full of cans of evaporated milk. He was killed instantely in the ensuing blaze. The funny thing was that this didn't really even make national news. Granted, it happened after 11pm EST. Apparently it wasn't news anymore by the time it was time for the news the next day.

On Friday we drove down to California Adventure. While the ticket turned out to be more than ridiculously overpriced (I had thought it was $65, but later found out it was $85), it was a really fun event. Several things at the new park were well done. The first ride we went on was Soaring Over California. This is basically an IMAX movie with Smell-o-Vision. You sit in dangling seats that mimic a plane or a hanglider (the theming was a bit fuzzy) and you take a trip over various parts of California. As you pass over the sequoias, you smell trees. As you pass over an orchard, you smell oranges. Funny thing was that as you passed over L.A., you didn't smell smog. Hmm. Anyway, it was pretty cool. I'm afraid I wasn't quite as wowed as everyone else, but it was pretty cool none the less. We also got to see the Muppet 3D movie, which I loved in Florida. Then we tried Limo ride. Oh man that was lame. It's sort of like a wax museum with figures you could barely tell who it was, but they weren't made out of wax, and they were all sort of mediocre tv stars like Tim Allen and Drew Carey. It was a dark ride sort of in the style of Roger Rabbit, but without the spinning or anything else to make it interesting. Oh well. Next we wandered over to the challenge trail. This was a fun playground with a zipline, rope climbs and bridges, rock climbing, slides, caves, and so forth. We played for a while, then we headed out to start the scavenger hunt. This was a great idea and really added a lot to the event. So to find the answer to the first clue, we headed into the Bug's Life 3D movie. This was cute, and a little creepy. Finally at the end, the beetles, cockroaches, and maggots left (and you could feel them crawling out under your bum!) and we had our first answer. Then we caught up with Fred & Julie. Julie is a woman who we've been seeing around for a while and which Fred liked a lot the first time he met her. Now, having broken up with Laura, he's starting to date Julie. She's really great. She's warm and huggable and fun. Anyway, we spent most of the rest of the evening with them. We wandered through the Boudin bakery demonstration and started getting hungry. Yummy sourdough. Then we wandered through the Mission tortillia factory. Yummy fresh tortillias. Next we headed out to go Paradise Pier. On our way, we noticed that the Eureka parade was coming. By and large, it was a fairly standard parade. It was interesting, but nothing too special. Then the guys on the pogo legs bounced by. These things were SO COOL! As dancers, we could all think of a million reasons that these things would be way too much fun. All we wanted to know was how to get some. I can't begin to describe them, although I've been sitting here trying for the last few minutes. Finally we made it out to the pier/boardwalk area. Rick and I tried the new coaster while Fred and Julie tried the Ferris Wheel. The coaster loaded very quickly and we were on and off within ten minutes. The Ferris Wheel took a lot longer because it has to load all the way around, then spin a few times, then reload. Bleh! Anyway, the coaster was very cool. It starts off with a blast like Space Mountain at DLP. You accelerate toward the first hill and don't really slow down through the whole ride. And it had a loop and I didn't panic! Yeah! While we were waiting for Fred & Julie to get their turn on the Ferris Wheel, we wandered around the rest of Paradise Pier. It looks a whole lot like the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk or the Santa Monica Pier. This basically worked out as a really cheap way to theme the area and still get to make money on carny games and pre-fab rides. After wandering through the pier and collecting several more scavenger hunt answers, we headed back to the Hollywood area for dinner at the Hollywood and Dine. Our tickets came with $15 vouchers for meals. We promptly realized this was more than we could spend on dinner. Instead, Rick and I got dinner on one voucher and Fred and Julie got dinner on another, which left us with two extra vouchers. We figured we’d use those for dessert later, which we did, and for snacks for the next day. We ended up picking up a bagful of croissants for a snack mid-day in Disneyland. After a bit more romping about, we concluded our evening in the Animation Studio. This was a really fun attraction. There was the Beast’s library where Lumiere would tell you which character you are most like. Depending on my answer to one particular question, I either ended up most like Belle or Arial. I can live with either of those really, although I really feel more kinship with Belle. Then there is Ursula’s grotto where she steals your voice so that you can do karaoke along to a scene from several different movies. You can sing or you can act in a scene. It was so much fun. Rick and I did a scene from Beauty and the Beast. Then we did karaoke to Bare Necessities from Jungle Book. Then Fred, Julie, and I did a scene from Bambi. This was a great giggly ending to the evening. We headed back to the hotel room and fell down only to rise far too early for a day at Disneyland. Disneyland was great as usual, but many of the favorites were shut down: Space Mountain and Roger Rabbit in particular. Still, FastPass has been installed all over the place, so on a day with very light crowds like this gorgeous day in January (sunny and 70 degrees!) we ended up waiting no longer than 5 or 10 minutes in any given line. We had even brought a book called “Would You” to pass the time, but never got a chance to bring it out. Rick and I concluded our day with a cappuccino at the Grand Californian, the new, super-nice hotel. All in all, it was a really fun weekend. We drove home, hitting Jerry’s Famous Deli in Studio City for a bit of matzo ball soup on our way out on Sunday.

Today I’m sitting in on the New Hire Tech Basics course in San Francisco. I’ll be teaching this course in about two weeks, so I really ought to be listening. Unfortunately, I’ve come to the end of my attention span, much like everyone else in the room. We’re all wandering off and feeling spacey. I officially rolled off the LDS WBL project this morning finally. I have no idea what I’ll be doing tomorrow outside of reading over the leader’s guide in detail. It will be nice to have a low pressure day. I can start to get caught up on correspondence and have some time to look over the WBL courses I was thinking of taking.

Last night, Tom and Kim came to stay the night. Tom had a couple of interviews around the bay today. He might just end up moving down here and moving in with Kim. I really like Kim and I hope that she and Tom are going to last. They seem so complimentary to one another and it’s great to see him thriving.

As for Rick and I, we’re happy as little clams lately. Something seemed to have snapped back into place on New Year’s and I don’t know what it is. What I do know is that for right now, we’re really happy and loving our home and life together. Aww…..

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