Fish Out of Water

Musings and observations about life from an East Coast native now living on the Left Coast in the California State Capitol since 2004. This fish has made her home in Madison, WI (7 years); Portland, OR (2 years); Las Vegas, NV (7 months); Middlebury, VT (3 summers); Marne-la-Vallee, a small town east of Paris, France (6 months); Middletown, CT (3 years); and Marshfield, MA, the fish's coastal hometown 40 miles south of Boston (17 years).

Location: Sacramento, California, United States


A Great Experience - Chicago Marathon

Musings from the Chicago Marathon on 10-10-10 "The Date to Motivate":
  • Being part of 1 of the 5 World Major Marathons is quite an experience, with over 38,000 runners toeing the line and 1.5 million spectators lining the entire race route
  • Wicked cool to see a Marathon welcome message at the Midway baggage claim
  • Best souvenirs = CTA ticket with Marathon image & special edition of the Chicago Tribune with list of ALL official finishers & times
  • All of us who officially completed the course did something that Ryan Hall (elite runner) hasn't done, since he pulled out of the field prior to the race due to "bad workouts" leading up to the event - I think we've all had "bad workouts," but I guess it's different when you make your living with this type of activity and have to consider the potential impacts to your career (or your rankings) if you have a poor performance
  • Maybe next time Ryan shouldn't make such a big deal out of trying to set a new American record... (performance anxiety???)
  • Running on wet banana peels late in a marathon is rather challenging
  • Hoses and spray bottles are most welcome late in a race when the temps rise to the 80s and the shade is hard to find
  • Note to spectators waiting for their runners at the exit to the gear check area - PLEASE move out of the way so we can keep moving rather than having to stop short and suffer leg cramps!
  • Crouching down quickly is definitely the fastest way to relieve a staggering calf cramp when trying to fight through the crowds at the end
  • Better to walk with a smile and enjoy the scenery than run with a grimace
  • So not cool for Niketown to keep the marathon merchandise at full price once the event is over (greedy, greedy - another good reason to boycott)
  • Cool course entertainment = Student orchestra at college (?) campus playing for runners
  • Staying so close to the Start/Finish is most welcome - Mr. E's parents rent a condo across from Millennium Park, so it took less than 10 minutes to jog to the Start at Grant Park (even had time for 2 porta-potty visits!)
  • Best post-race recovery = Swimming + Hot Tub
  • Best post-race meal = Starbucks reduced fat cheese, turkey bacon, & egg white breakfast sandwich - yum!
  • Best post-race sight = Mr. E at Buckingham Fountain holding up sign "Go Jo! Go Jo! Go Go Go!"
  • So great to see Mr. E with sign around Mile 10... Many, many thanks for the love, support, and toting of the no-longer-needed-but-rather-sweaty t-shirt - Je t'aime!
  • Definitely time to take a break from this distance for awhile... I promise, Mr. E, at least 1 year off from marathons


Is this Chicago or San Francisco??!!

Mr. E's parents rent a condo just four blocks off Michigan Ave, right near the Lake and across from the fabulous Millennium Park. One of the best features of the condo is that it's a corner unit facing north, so the views are multiple and incredible. Over the past 24 hours, however, we've had some rather obstructed vistas, due to the apparent incursion of San Francisco's weather into the Chicago area...

Looking north: The Hancock Tower

The Hancock Tower (yesterday afternoon)

Where is the Hancock Tower??? (this morning)

Looking northeast: Navy Pier

Navy Pier (yesterday afternoon)

Where is Navy Pier??? (this morning)

Looking southwest: Millennium Park

Millennium Park (yesterday afternoon)

Where's the Park??? (this morning)


Balcony Remodel Week #2

Sawhorses with view through new window opening

View to sky through new rafters

New rafters from right

New rafters from left

New roof peak from front

New rafters & roof peak from left

New full roof from right

New full roof from front

New full roof from left

New full roof from inside (looking towards existing ceiling)

New space all enclosed!


Balcony Remodel - Week #1

Our balcony remodel/bedroom expansion project began last week. Here are some progress photos to enjoy!
Carpet & balcony wall removed (interior view)

Balcony wall removed
Balcony wall & roof overhang removed

New wall framing

New wall framing & sliding glass door removed

New window & wall framing

New window & wall framing

New window & wall framing


Lounging Cat

Calypso sits in positions unlike any other cat I've ever seen. These pictures show Cal lounging next to me on the couch, watching a movie:

When I showed the photos to S at work, she laughed so hard that she started crying! :)