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


Marvelous May

Time for another monthly recap of activities here in Sacto!

May 1: Happy Hour & Film
A "bonus" Happy Hour with L at the Sheraton Public Market Bar after PPMM's annual Capitol Day.  Later in the evening, I attended a screening of "The First 70" at the Crest Theatre.  Due to budget cuts, 70 of the California State Parks were slated for closure this year, and this film showcases many of the sites on that list.  Some parks have been saved at least temporarily by local groups of supporters or by the National Park Service, but many sites are still in jeopardy.  And the question remains - what does it mean to "close" a park anyway?  How can you keep people out of those natural environments and conservation lands?  Definitely an ongoing debate and discussion for the Golden State.

May 4: Ballet
Mr. E and I attended the annual Sac Ballet performance at our gym.  Many of the dancers work out at the Capital Athletic Club (CAC), so each year, they give a special performance in the basketball gym just for club members and guests.  So neat to see them in a mostly unadorned and very intimate space.  My dancer "crush" Stefan was injured and didn't perform - drat!

May 5: Brunch & Volunteering
Brunch at Fox & Goose for Mr. E and me.  I then volunteered for a couple of hours to help process some payments as part of the "Finance Committee" for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure.  Despite the ridiculousness of the Komen vs. PP fiasco earlier this year, I still support the Komen organization and will definitely plan to sign up for multiple volunteer shifts next year.

May 10: Bike Fest & Happy Hour
"May is Bike Month" in Sacramento and always includes a Bike Fest on the West Steps of the State Capitol.  My favorite part is getting a free Merlino's Freeze for logging miles online.  Watermelon freeze - yum!  In the evening, we had Happy Hour with CPCA at Cafeteria 15L.  I really enjoy working with a group of folks that enjoy socializing outside the office!

May 11: UW Alumni Event
Mr. E and I finally attended a UW Founder's Day event.  These are annual alumni events that feature dinner and a UW speaker.  We were excited about this year's event since the speaker was Mike Leckrone, the leader of the UW Marching Band.  He was a fabulous speaker and shared lots of amazing stories about his experiences.  Mediocre food, but a stellar presentation!

May 12: Surprise Party!
We hosted the first part of a surprise party to celebrate N's completion of her sign-language interpretation program.  N is the partner of S, my friend from PP (and our wonderful cat-sitter), and it was so fun to be able to actually surprise N with the festivities.  She was completely fooled!  We ended the evening by heading over to J & J's for additional food, dessert, and bean-bag tossing in the backyard.

May 13: Knudsen Visit
My cousin, M, returned for his "planned" visit (the combined visit of M & W last month was somewhat last-minute).  The weather cooperated by staying a bit cooler, so he and I headed off to the River Cats day game and then met up with Mr. E later for dinner at the newly-opened Firestone Public House.  The meal became something of a comedy-of-errors as I attempted to find something on the menu without garlic or onions!  Luckily, the staff was very helpful and friendly, despite the difficulties, and I ended up with an awesome freshly made-just-for-me ahi tuna burger.  So tasty.  Unfortunately, the typical tuna burger on the menu is pre-made and contains scallions, so I won't be able to repeat the experience.  Drat!  At least now I'll have a better idea of the other items on the menu that have "stealth" components to avoid (i.e. items not specifically called out in the menu description).

May 15 & 22: CAC Workshop
I attended a 2-part "Gait Workshop" at CAC.  The first session was a presentation about gait analysis, and the second session was to do a video of walking, jogging, and running.  Since I've been having difficulty with my running for the past 2 years, including some chronic pain, I'm hoping that a personalized analysis and recommendations might offer some guidance and help me rediscover some of the joy of running that has been lost.

May 16: Cocktails
Mr. E and I decided to go out for cocktails at Hot Italian as we waited for our fresh organic chicken (from Heavy Dirt Farms) to roast.  The drinks were tasty, but the bartender was unusually poor.  During other visit when we've sat at the bar, we've been very pleased with the service, but Jon was definitely sub-par.  Disappointing.

May 18: More Ballet
Our annual attendance at Sac Ballet's "Beer & Ballet" was awesome, as always!  We so enjoy seeing this performance, which includes pieces that are created by the dancers themselves.  And yes, the show does include beer (or wine) - how can you resist that combination???  No to mention that Stefan had recovered from his injury and was included in the performance - yay! (Mr. E is going to tease me for that comment...)

May 19: Monthly Brunch
Monthly brunch, this time with I & S at the Fox & Goose.  Mr. E decided to join us, which was a lovely addition.  S was out of town visiting family in Oklahoma, and M inadvertently went to Bernardo's instead (oops!), but the four of us who did make it to the right location had a very pleasant meal and conversation.

May 20: V-ball
Mr. E had a mid-season volleyball tournament at CAC, so I got to chill out at home with the kitties all day.

May 23: Thank-You Dinner
We met T & D for dinner (our treat) at The Press as a thank-you to them for being so supportive and helpful during a recent challenging situation.  The food was great, as always, as was the conversation that ranged across multiple subject areas.  T & D are both such warm, interesting, intelligent, and articulate people, and it's a pleasure to socialize with them.

May 24: Potluck
Potluck at CPCA!  We celebrated Memorial Day with summer-themed foods and a team-building exercise that involved play-doh, blindfolds, and the American flag.  Need I say more??!!

May 26: Monthly Dinner & Drinks
Monthly dinner and drinks with L, this time at The Red Rabbit.  The hand-crafted cocktails were tasty, as was the food, but the service was a bit less-than-stellar.  That seems to be a recurring challenge for this venue, unfortunately.  At least the company was great!

May 27: Massage & Dinner & A Long Weekend
Monthly massages for Mr. E and me.  Ahhhh....  And what better way to cap off the weekend and lead into the Memorial Day holiday then with a return visit to The Press.  Yum, yum!

May 28: Solar Eclipse
See entry and photos below!!!