llcoolvad: (newer)
Had a good vacation. Perfect weather Sun-Tue in Provincetown, where we ate good food, relaxed on the deck, wandered around downtown and looked at art, and visited the Whydah Pirate Museum (which, frankly, was uninspiring). Still, beautiful weather and fun times. There are pictures and a lot more text inside, lots of it about my health... )

As always, more pictures at Flickr.
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On my walks, I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched c-beams glitter in the dark near Tannhäuser Gate...

OK, maybe none of that. But I see pretty things. Apparently I like to walk near water.


Social stuff: Met Patrick's boyfriend Peter on Saturday night. Went to a Japanese place, ate way too much! So good, though. And Peter is very nice! On Sunday I saw Steve and Val: we ate dinner at the beach, then we took a walk along the seawall in Swampscott.

Sun Setting Over Swampscott

Monday, P and I had lunch and then took a walk at the Breakheart Reservation. GORGEOUS weather. Nature! We saw two deer. I couldn't get a picture because they were in deep shrubbery and looked like nothing through my camera lens. Lots of hills there, so I got a pretty good workout. It's about three miles from my house, so I think I'll start going there more often. Only open daylight hours, so it'll have to be on the weekends.

Breakheart Reservation

Tuesday: Walking 50 min (lunchtime at work)
Wednesday: Walking 60 min
Thursday: Walking 45 min (lunchtime at work)
Friday: Walking 50 min (lunchtime at work)
Saturday: Walking 45 min (lunchtime at work)
Sunday: Walking 35 min
Monday: Walking 45 min

All seven days! And 5.5 hours. Not too strenuous on Sunday, but that was extra, anyway. I was REALLY not feeling it on Friday, so I skipped weights class. I had already walked at lunch, so I figured that was ok. But I had forgotten that today was Labor Day and my class wasn't being held! So a whole week of no lifting heavy things. I might go to the work gym tomorrow at lunch and lift heavy things. But I dunno. Stupid holidays. Mess me all up! I drove to the gym and pulled into the parking lot and only the lack of other cars made me realize that DUH, holidays mean things close sometimes.

Looks like the work training session is at least postponed, but possibly cancelled. It's weird: we've been sending email to the guy (a VP at the company) who set it all up, and until a few weeks ago he was very prompt in his responses. Then suddenly he just stopped responding. We've sent him three requests. Got an out of office reply to the middle one, but now he hasn't replied to any of them. So bizarre! I mean, if he wanted to cancel, why not just let us know? No big deal. And if he was fired or something, why the out of office reply with a return date? We cc: another member of his team, so if he'd died or something you'd think the other member would at least let us know. But no! We've decided that even if he responds this week there's not enough time to pull it together by Sunday, which would be travel day.

I note that my management team simply refuses to try to solve the mystery. No one will pick up a phone. They're all "we emailed him, ball's in his court!" Which is spectacularly unhelpful all around. Whatever. I stopped writing the training document. We'll still bill them for what we've done. And maybe I'll take the week of the 10th off. Because I REALLY need a vacation.
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So as you know, very soon I am moving in with Mom and putting all my stuff into storage in my attic here. I need to be out of my current apartment by the end of January so Patrick can move into it. He really needs to be in a bit earlier than the end of January so he can paint (because I was lazy when I moved in and left the dreadful paint that was already there alone). Which means I need to goddamned get busy cleaning up and packing, right? AND it's also three days before Christmas, where I need to produce presents for at least two people. And when I woke up today I had exactly one small present in hand. So naturally today I...

...went to a museum. That's right. It's been on my list of "FUN" for several years, but for some reason today (TODAY) I was compelled to go to the Peabody Essex Museum (which is not in Peabody at all, nor is it in Essex, although it IS in Essex County — as is Peabody, confusingly. No, the museum is in Salem. You're welcome). I had read an article in the Globe a month ago about how they managed to recently raise $550 million, which put them in the top tier of museums, along par with the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. So that totally piqued my interest and got me out of my own way to finally go. I mean, quality museum experience with no city annoyances? Yay!

It has a huge Asian art collection, and has a big maritime history collection as well. The Phillips Library, a separate building, is closed right now for renovations, but has an amazing collection of books, maps, and other written word stuff like ship log books — a selection of which is on display in the main museum building. I have a particular fondness for stuff in museums, rather than for paintings. Show me pottery, tools, weapons, housewares, chests, furniture, jewelry, models, books, and I'm happy. Paintings are fine, but I like to see all forms of stuff.

So I happily pottered around for a few hours. I even bought myself a membership (I am on a "reacquire familiarity with culture" kick right now, and find myself drawn to this kind of thing more and more. Might as well have the ability to go whenever I want to, right?) There's Comida, an awesome taqueria, right next door to the museum, too, so I avoided the cafe and went there for lunch. Nom nom nom, torta! Pretty good.

I then dealt with reality and ran around buying Christmas presents. The stuff I ordered online arrived today, also, so I am basically ready for this holiday madness. Gotta pick up some lottery tickets for Mom tomorrow (her favorite thing), but otherwise I'm done. I've even wrapped everything already. Yay me! STARTING to feel the holiday spirit. A little. Maybe!

Other entertainment: Been haunting Redbox lately. Like I don't already have enough options for entertainment, with my two Tivos, my Netflix streaming, and my Netflix DVDs by mail? I guess I don't, because I managed to rent something like 10 movies from them in the last few weeks. Some were HORRIBLE. I got Green Lantern (bad), the latest Pirates movie (ok), Super 8 (great), Captain America (good), 13 (good in a stylish odd way), The River Murders (bad, with Ray Liotta and Christian Slater, so it could have gone either way but it didn't go a good way), The Lost Future (tv movie, unwatchable even by me, and had Sean Bean so WTF?), 2012 Ice Age (very very bad, done by Asylum so there you go), Transformers Something Something (bad), Catch .44 (bad — and with Bruce Willis and Forrest Whitaker it should have been better), and something I'm forgetting that was also bad. The best thing about Redbox? It's a dollar to watch something bad. Instead of $3 or whatever Blockbuster used to be. And it's right there. But seriously, take my advice and avoid most of what I rented. My takeaway: Just because there's a decent actor in it doesn't mean it's a decent flick. MAN! Also: don't stand there at the machine trying to pick your movie. Do it from the comfort of home, then just go pick them up. Then you can avoid movies like THE LOST FUTURE. Dear god.

As I mentioned before, P and I also saw the lovely Robert Downey, Jr. and Jude Law in Sherlock Holmes, which honestly I have no idea if it held together as a movie, as I am attending merely to drool over pretty manflesh. I think it was fun! Tomorrow we are going to see "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" and I am hoping that will be excellent fun, also. We are trying to get to see all the movies we want to again.

Made it to 60 pounds lost, finally, since I started this spring. Which means that from my lifetime maximum weight I have now lost 100 pounds. 100 pounds! An entire supermodel and a half! Now I just need to lose another 100 pounds and I will be good. Yay! Halfway. I expect this half will go more slowly. But hey. Took me 47 years to put it on. I can deal with a bit to take it off again.

slideshow of museum pix or click below to see select images.

photos within of beauteous museum-y stuff )
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Had a week. Did a few fun things: despite my long-standing tradition of not attending my work's holiday party, this year I decided to attend. Partly because some of my work friends had decided to go, and partly because for the first time in probably 20 years I felt kind of like dressing up. Everyone at work has been really complimentary and supportive of my weight loss, so I felt like in a way it was a safe way to come out and show off my new, smaller figure. And it was fun. I liked watching everyone dance. I hate everyone less. P wanted to come with me because they're all his ex-coworkers and he thought it might be fun to see everyone again, especially when he was all dressed up and looking good. So yeah, was fun.

Yesterday P and I had dinner and watched some more "Revenge" -- show is awesome for over-the-top drama, complicated machinations, and master manipulators; also everyone is exceedingly attractive, so it's all fun to watch. Today we went to see "Sherlock Holmes" because I <3 Robert Downey Jr. more than is seemly. I love how much they play up the homoerotic thing between Holmes and Watson. So much more fun to have a young hot Holmes and Watson. And bonus naked Stephen Fry! Anyway, was good. Big ups for steampunk glasses.

Then the less fun: Had my review. Was a pretty good review, got some very sincere and detailed praise from a couple of consultants and from my coworkers. Got a small raise but no bonus. Found out Saturday that a coworker got a slightly higher raise and a small bonus, so felt bereft and angry and pathetic. She deserves it, don't get me wrong! She's been working hard this year and got stuck doing some projects that no one else had to (or probably could do). And while I haven't had my strongest year (see: depression, health issues, anxiety, etc.) I've still had a stronger year than almost anyone else (with the exception of that coworker). So I feel the crushing weight of MASSIVE UNFAIRNESS, even though I recognize that I am an ass. P thinks I need to think about it as, well, it wasn't my best year and maybe it was her best year, and just move on. So I will do that.

I am also going to try to turn the crushing weight of MASSIVE UNFAIRNESS into motivation to finally get off my ass and get a new job. I will start after the holidays and after I've packed things. I need to get over to my new favorite clothing sales clerk and have her get me a couple of interview outfits together. I need to get rid of my two standby dresses — they're way too big on me now, and I've had them since I last job searched in 1998. Shoes are always the hardest part for me, but I'll just have to keep trying. Maybe I need to finally get to a podiatrist and see if I could have something done to my feet.

Anyway, that's my week. Woot! And here's me and P from Friday night. I look a little dazed, I think. But hey! There's less of me. Most of you have probably seen this on facebook already. I don't have too many readers over here who aren't over there, so pardon for the duplication.

Work Holiday Party


Aug. 7th, 2011 12:22 am
llcoolvad: (hair)
Done a few fun things this last week+. First up, as I mentioned before, I went to our company's summer outing, and decided to go up in a tethered balloon. That was pretty fun. Now of course I desperately want to go in a real balloon, so I'll have to start saving up for that. Maybe be a good birthday present for next year to myself!

I wuz there

Saw Cowboys and Aliens with Patrick last Saturday. I don't care what the reviews said, I thought it was awesome. Although it's possible that I love it from a more meta perspective. I mean, it was awfully fun seeing James Bond and Han Solo ride horsies and shoot things. And the manflesh was choice. Clancy Brown! Sam Rockwell! Practically everyone else! Mostly age-appropriate, too.

Sunday we tried to get to the Chihuly exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts, but the lines stretched out for a whole block and it was hot and sunny and Patrick had a sunburn, so we decided to bag it and got some lunch instead. Came home and I watched some baseball, then I headed out to hang with Stephen and Val. We went to the beach for a bit. I was a little sad, so I cut the visit short and came home and moped. I'm a bucket of fun sometimes!

Glass – Forbidden

Met with a personal trainer on Monday. It was more of a sales pitch for personal training, but it was still pretty decent as far as a workout was concerned. I was sore for three days!

Patrick and I had dinner on Tuesday at On The Border. It's a challenge to eat out, now, because I have to spend time with the internet before I order anything — checking caloric values and what counts as a portion and all of that. Kind of boring, but interesting too. I mean, portion sizes SUCK at restaurants! Way too big. It's scary to look around you and realize that this is exactly why Americans are all fat. We all eat out way too often, and our portion sizes are terrifyingly huge.

Signed up for Audible, finally. I've been listening to audio books for years, but damn, Audible is wicked easy. No ripping the CDs to mp3s and ending up with 3,000 files, no missing bits because the library CDs skipped, just click, click, on my phone instantly. Listening to the second-to-most-recent Dresden book by Jim Butcher. More importantly, is read by James Marsters. Keeping me occupied at the gym and while I drive to work. I was finding the commute left me too much time to fret, so now I am fretless.

Worked at home on Wednesday and wasn't very productive in any way, shape, or form. It was dead at work, and all the supervisors were on vacation, too, so there was no motivation to work on "projects". I didn't even do laundry, which is my usual chore on WFH days. Was going to drive into Cambridge to see Jim Butcher read at the Coop, but decided it would take too long to get in there after work and find somewhere to park — I'd probably miss it. So I skipped it and had dinner with P, instead.

Wanted to go to see William Gibson reading at the Coop on Thursday, but I guess he had a family emergency and cancelled that whole part of the tour, so alas! Very glad I called first. Two reading failures! Instead I beat myself up at the gym and did some grocery shopping.

Friday I went to the MFA. Patrick was supposed to come, but he was sick so I decided to go myself. The Dale Chihuly exhibit is ending Monday so I needed to get there before it ended. I love going to museums by myself — I don't have to go at anyone else's pace, and I don't have to irritate them by stopping every five seconds to take pictures.


So I had a good time. Wandered around a lot of the museum. Was very footsore by the end. Burned many calories!

Today I took the day off from work and took a class at the Boston Center for Adult Education. The class was called Container Gardening, but it was about everything to do with planting, really. Fun, but the woman was flake central. She had us go around the table and explain why we were there. I said something that I thought would be slightly amusing and mostly harmless, as I do. "I'm Laurie, and I have a bunch of plants and really need to learn how to care for them better. I feel bad about pruning, for example, because I think I'll hurt them" -- and ok, poor phrasing on my part, but I meant "i'll prune too much and they'll die" not "oh, their tiny nervous systems SCREAM with each application of the scissors!" but that's of course what she thought I meant, and went into a lengthy explanation that she says a little prayer to the plants when she has to cut them, and apologizes to the bugs when she has to kill them, and on and on. Hilarious! She saw me as this kindred soul for the rest of the class, and of course inside I was dying laughing.

But the class was informative and I have more confidence now (and some new random plant that she made us pot and take home). I had parked in the Boston Common Garage ($11 on weekend days, $8 because I was taking a class at BCAE), so I got to walk both to and from class through the Public Garden. I've been spending a lot more time downtown lately than I have in years, and really I'd forgotten how much I love my city. So beautiful. So walkable! Anyway, between the there and the back I clocked 40 mins walking, so I counted that as my day's exercise. Yay!

I watched the Sox kick some Yankee ass this afternoon, fetched dinner for myself, for Mom, and for Patrick, and then watched a bunch of stored-up Fringe on Tivo. A good evening. Tomorrow needs to be a little productive. But that's tomorrow.
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Because I posted it on Facebook. Alas, as usual I only had my iphone with me. But the best camera is the one you have with you. I used a digital zoom on it and it was (duh) dark out, so meh on quality. But it was so pretty!
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Moving day at work started Thursday and ran into today. We officially aren't in our new hallway until Monday, after the building inspector comes out and ... inspects, I guess! But we've got the cubes up, in theory the electricity is working, and we're almost ready to work. We've been working out of "flex" space in the meantime, and man, can I just stay there? Three people in an office, instead of 12 people in a hallway. Very nice.

A few pix. I'll post more when the cubes are populated. pix inside )
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Two days in a row to make up for the missing day. Today P and I went to visit our friend Jenn. She lives in New Hampshire, so visiting is a deliberate and not a casual thing. We went up for lunch, and got to meet her new cute kitty, currently named Harlow. Apparently Harlow is in Witness Protection, as it was impossible to get a picture of him. (I apologize for picture quality. All from my 1st gen iPhone, not good!)

no pictures, please!

"No Pictures, Please."

Here he actually reached up and pushed the camera down. Seriously, talk about diva!

Because I have nothing else to report, my book list so far for the year:

1. Gone Tomorrow, Lee Child (13th Jack Reacher book)
2. 61 Hours, Lee Child (14th Jack Reacher book)
3. Worth Dying For, Lee Child (15th Jack Reacher book)
4. The Monkey's Raincoat, Robert Crais (1st Elvis Cole book)
5. Stalking the Angel, Crais (2nd Elvis Cole book)
6. Lullaby Town, Robert Crais (3rd Elvis Cole book)
7. Free Fall, Robert Crais (4th Elvis Cole book)
8. Voodoo River, Robert Crais (5th Elvis Cole book)
9. Sunset Express, Robert Crais (6th Elvis Cole book)
10. Indigo Slam, Robert Crais (7th Elvis Cole book)

And I'm currently in the middle of, yes, another Robert Crais, L.A. Requiem. I am clearly in a reading jag. Crais is pretty good. I can't imagine why I never picked him up before. Maybe I glanced through one and thought he was too derivative. Maybe I was still in my "read mysteries set in Boston only" phase, I dunno. But he's a page-turner, with good dialog and good plotting. Elvis Cole, the main character, is a fairly typical hero: he's selfless and true, he's fiercely loyal, even the cops respect him, he's got mad skillz, yo, and he's got a mysterious sidekick. Bad guys frequently die, good people mostly get saved, and there's a bit of action of the female persuasion from time to time. Perfect escapism for dreary winter days.

And clearly I need it. Here's the result of a week's worth of almost non-stop melting: more pix within )
llcoolvad: (hair)
This weekend I got to visit Stephen and Val at their rental on the Cape. I got there around 2pm on Sunday, and since it was a little cold and cloudy out we stayed in and watched the Sox game and started on our now-traditional jigsaw puzzle. behind a cut, several pictures within )
llcoolvad: (cold)
It's a gorgeous sunny day. On my lunch break, walking over to the mall, I noticed that the geese were really kicking up a racket. Then I realized they were making the only sounds that I could hear. No traffic noise, no cell phones, no talking people. Pretty nice for 1:30pm on a weekday. Peace.

(iPhone pic, sorry for the quality or lack thereof)
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Vote Here

I voted on my way to work today. I voted to keep income tax, decriminalize pot, get rid of dog tracks. I voted for a bunch of uncontested school board seats. And of course I voted for Obama.

I wanted a photo of my ballot with the circle filled in next to Obama/Biden, but alas, a cop told me no cameras right as I took a photo at the entry door.


I didn't get anything at the bake sale. And they never give us stickers at my polling place, so that makes me sad, but I guess I don't need a sticker to know I did my part today.

Hope you did, too!
llcoolvad: (pretty)
These Hurricane Ike aftermath pictures are just amazing. The Big Picture is a great photo blog.

So much devastation, and the bits of unexpected beauty in the devastation: the view of the storm from space (2), the cuban waterfront (3), the high school football field (14), the oil slicks (16), the house completely engulfed in flames and unattended (26). Haunting.
llcoolvad: (joy!)
Today was our work's summer outing. The powers that be chose the Charlestown Navy Yard, which I probably had been to as a child but honestly don't remember. It's part of the National Park Service, so it's all free, and it's very close to our office.

For our corporate thing, they set up a big tent with a DJ and endless tables of food (lobster, steak tips, chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs, clam chowder, various salads, corn on the cob, then strawberry shortcake and watermelon for dessert. And italian ice. And an open bar with everything), and they had set up tables for Texas Hold 'Em and areas for various sports. It was pretty good. I didn't play anything, but I did tour the two ships they have there, the USS Constitution, and the USS Cassin Young.

pictures within )

Fun in Sun

Jun. 11th, 2008 10:03 pm
llcoolvad: (joy!)
During my vacation I had been planning on going to Provincetown with Steve and Val for a couple of days. Stuff happened (as it does) and their trip was postponed a week. Lucky for me I have the type of job that I can usually take vacation days with little to no advanced warning so I still managed to get there for a couple of days. Note to you Boston-types: the trip to the Cape is completely stress- and traffic-free if you go early Sunday morning.

The place they rented is gorgeous: three bedrooms, full kitchen, washer/dryer, 2 baths, huge LR fully furnished like a house would be with books, stereo, games, and outside a cute little front yard with flowers and all around the back a good sized deck. Ahhhhhh, the deck!

Pictures within. much sunshine. no porn! )
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For those who skip my rantings but are interested in all things geeky, I finally put up some archive pix that I took in 2001, 2005, and 2008 of Neil Gaiman. The 2001 pictures also include a lot of Harlan Ellison, too, in his normal high dudgeon. The quality kinda sucks! Here's the set. And a sample:

Harlan Pontificating
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Wednesday already?! Ack!

Vacations need to be three times as long, I think. Unless I am traveling I spend the first couple days doing nothing, then I get busy, then I go back to nothing, then I run out of time.

So far:

Friday I left work early, went to have dinner with Stephen, then we went to see Neil Gaiman speak at MIT. I've seen him two other times, and he's always entertaining and charming. This was no exception. Alas, they were making a DVD of the lecture series, so no flash was allowed. Pictures not good.

Turn to the Left!!Turn to the Right!! Fashion!!*
Three Faces of GaimanThree Faces of Gaiman, 2Stand Up!

Other pix in my Flickr photostream. Came home, watched losing baseball. Read.

Saturday I slept late, bought lunch for Mom and I (breakfast food, yum!), then went out to dinner and Indiana Jones with P. Read before bed. Watched losing baseball.

Sunday I slept late, poked around on the computer, opened windows in house, sniffed the pretty air. Read a lot of the day. Watched losing baseball.

Monday I had lunch with P, came home and took the cat outside for a couple hours, poked around with various pictures/blog entries/etc. Read a lot of the day. Wrote long review of Kindle. Not finished. Watched winning baseball.

Tuesday I did chores. Dragged all recycleables off to city yard, picked up Rx for Mom, had lunch, returned cans, cleaned out car, washed car, went to Jiffy Lube, dropped off glasses for new lenses, went to Target, went to food store. At home, made dinner, plugged in fan, read the internet, sorted out receipts, took tags off clothes bought earlier in week and put away. Read a small amount of the day. Had to call Amazon because price on Kindle went down (it's $359 now) and I missed 30 day price guarantee by 3 days. Arg! Was denied. Wrote snippy email. Will see what happens. Watched losing baseball. Life is hard. Manny got home run #499 — just one more and we can go back to normal.

Chores! Many chores! Clean house. Entire house. All laundry. Have to do in the next 4 days, because early Sunday will drive to Provincetown to spend 2 days with S & V. They have rented a gorgeous place right on the water and I want to take pix and hang out with them. I took the wrong week off, so I can only spend Sunday night there, as Tuesday I need to be at work. So it'll be most of Sunday, Sunday night, then all day Monday til I poop out (or they get sick of me -- so maybe early Sunday afternoon!). Here's hoping the weather is good Sunday and Monday.

*I was debating "stand up, sit down, fight fight fight", but I went Bowie instead.
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Less pretty than my previous post (but certainly interesting), a compare and contrast. Here's the forsythia tree in my driveway May 1, 2007:

again behind a cut )
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OK, so P and I had lunch at On the Border today, and we noticed there weren't many people eating at the restaurant with us. I thought maybe it was because it was kind of early, but P pointed out that it might be because people were all at cookouts. Were you all at cookouts? I think it's kinda early for a cookout, and said so. He said "Well, it's kind of the beginning of summer" and I guess (calendar dates to the contrary) it really is. I mean, all the resort/summer rental places pump their prices up starting this weekend, right?

But this year seems to be flying by! This winter was horribly long, but in some ways winter always feels like the dregs of the previous year. And now we're almost at summer? So I thought I'd better get off my butt and post some of my spring pictures before it's completely gone.

I took a drive recently and became obsessed with pretty trees. Thankfully I had my pocket camera with me. Behind the cut for size. )


Mar. 17th, 2008 10:31 pm
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I just was messing around with my Treo, and it still works! I can't see anything on the screen, but I can make calls and receive calls just fine. So I guess it's ok to wait. A little while, anyway.

Sadness, part 1

Sadness, part 2

(note: the cracks are on the inside, so the glass itself is totally smooth and not leaking any of the whatever-it-is)

Heh, my bluetooth headset works, too. I wish our phones worked the way the UK phones do, where phones aren't locked down. I'd get this repaired and keep it as a backup.

ETA: Just looked up replacement screens on EBay. $40! And there are videos all over YouTube how to replace the screen. I fixed my own Handspring before, and changed the battery on my old iPod. And it's only $40. Ha, Apple, you might just have to wait for my dosh after all!


Feb. 26th, 2008 12:59 am
llcoolvad: (cold)
Much like [ profile] p_j_cleary, Sunday I went outside for a short walk. I was over near the Stone Zoo. There's a lake there, but I don't know what it's called.

Lake Better View

Patrick got a lot more pictures than I did! I took five. I wanted to take more, but I had a bunch of chores to run.

I'd like my next batch of photos to be of budding things and bright green and no more white and black!


llcoolvad: (Default)

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