Sunday, April 10, 2011

To the Plantation

Today I decided to take a day trip to something unique in Louisiana. I went to Breaux Bridge and ate at Cafe des Amis. Good food.

I then went the The Nottoway Plantation. A big white mansion that was build before the civil war. The Nottoway Plantation build in 1859. It is currently owned by an Australian. An amazing mansion next to the Mississippi. I took the tour and the tour guide was really in informative. She really knew the house and its history. Many of the furniture was close to period but was not original. The chandeliers were. They were once gas. The moulding around the ceiling was an amazing design.

I then had a concert playing timpani with the Lafayette Concert Band.

Posted by Eric at 10:32 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Baton Rouge

DD and I went to find McGee's Landing just outside of Lafayette. Did not really find it but we did eat some good food at a restaurant overlooking some water. There were also 3 pet alligators in a fenced area with 3 turtles sunning in the sun. One turtle was standing on the back of one of the alligators and neither one caring. Just sitting still in the sun.

I then took a drive to Baton Rouge to just check out the city and DD spotted a casino riverboat. So we went in and gambled a little. Some slots and some craps. DD had fun but did not win anything. Drove a little around the city. Nothing special. Just a city. Then back home to hang out.

Posted by Eric at 10:49 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Mardi Gras in New Orleans

DD and I started to head down to New Orleans for Mardi Gras. We stopped at Chicken on the Bayou which is somewhere near Henderson. A popular place. DD and I had an alligator po-boy. DD's 1st alligator and really liked it. Though not my 1st alligator, it is the best I have had. We arrived in New Orleans and found a place to park. The Thoth parade was already in progress. We found a spot to watch. The floats are amazing. Better than the Galveston floats and the Lafayette ones. There were also throwing really good beads and other stuff like stuffed animals and fake spears. DD managed to catch a spear and gave it to me. He can not exactly take it on the plane.

When that parade stopped we walked along the parade route to Canal Street. It was so crowded. There was an area of just ladders for people to stand on during the parade. Lots of ladders there and some others along the parade route. I then showed DD Bourbon Street. Though crowded, the beads being thrown from the balconies were crap beads. There were better beads being though off the balconies in Galveston. Galveston is much more fun than Bourbon Street for Mardi Gras.

We then went to get something at Arby's on Canal Street. Apparently, you can not use the bathroom unless you have a receipt. This was also true in McDonalds. When I went to the bathroom, girls were also going into the guys bathroom to use the stalls. Did not bother me but I did warn DD. DD thought it was weird and has told everyone he talks to when he talked about our New Orleans trip.

We then stayed on Canal Street to watch the Bacchus. Also amazing and elaborate floats. Some were 3 levels and some had 4 floats put together. After that parade DD and I started are long walk back to the car. The Endymion parade followed immediately after it. This parade is usually on Saturday but because of the major storm it was postponed to today. Also elaborate float and got my 4th stuffed animal. This time a cute orange fish. It was so cool being there during Mardi Gras. DD thought it was the highlight of his trip to see me. We were both so tired and our feet hurt from all the standing and walking. Going to New Orleans was something I always wanted to do for a long time. It was really fun.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Heading Back Home

Sunday DD left to go home so AD, JK and I had some time in the evening to really talk about stuff for a few days until I left today. We also played a little scrabble. I was nice spending time with AD and Jk and it was nice to finally spend some time with my new nephew.

The flight back sucked since I had 2 layovers. 1st flight I sat next to a really large guy which spilled into my seat so I could not sit straight and could not take a nap. Then the 2nd flight I got really hot after I woke up from a nap and had to go to the bathroom and put water on my face to cool down. Before the 3rd flight I had a massive headache so I had to get some over paid Advil. Got home and slept for 10 hours in a real bed.

It was a great white Christmas and New Years. Now to get ready for work.

Posted by Eric at 8:38 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Dinner and Hangout

Did not do anything special. We mainly hung out. DD and I took a walk an took pictures of the snow. We did go to get Mexican at Azteca.

Posted by Eric at 10:22 PM | Comments (0)

Happy New Year



Posted by Eric at 12:01 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, December 31, 2010

Happy New Years Eve

DD, JK, AD and I went to First Night for New Years. It was really cold. By midnight it was 3 degrees. 3 DEGREES. Now that is cold. It is the coldest I have ever been.

So during the evening, we went to see African drummers and dancers, Irish dancers, highland dancers with bagpipers, Taiko Drummers and a big band. The evening ended with the countdown and fireworks. A fun evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pancake House

Yesterday at the hockey game, because the made a certain amount of points at the end of the game, fans got a coupon for a free shore stack of pancakes at IHOP (which I have called pancake house since I was little). So today we (DD, AD JK, Mom and I) went to pancake house to use them. Mom used mine since I always get the cheese omelet and it already comes with pancakes.

After doing some errands with AD and JK we went back home to play some games and look at some of my resent pictures I have taken.

Posted by Eric at 10:30 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Good Old Hockey Game

AD, JK, DD and I went to see a minor league hockey game between the Spokane Chiefs adn Seattle. It was a good game and it was fun watching a game again. Seattle made the 1st goal within a few minutes into the game. Followed by a goal by Spokane before the end of the 1st period. The rest of the game was incredible. Spokane kept on making amazing goals. The game ended with Spokane 8 Seattle 2. It was a fun game to watch.

Posted by Eric at 10:52 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Staying In and Playing Music

Tuesday we never went out. We all stayed in. DD and AD were playing the Wii. Later Mom was playing the guitar while we were singing some Christmas carols. Then JK wanted to sing some broadway tunes and I accompanied her on the keyboard. It was a game playing and music making day.

Posted by Eric at 10:46 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, December 27, 2010

Movies and Sushi

We went to and had sushi lunch. We then went to see the new Harry Potter movie. It was the closest to the book than the other movies which in this case is not a good thing since the 1st half of the book was rather boring and a lot of camping from place to place. She really needed an editor.

Posted by Eric at 10:34 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Lunch and a Movie

We all went to eat at the Red Robin.  I got the pesto pasta that I liked last time I was here.  We then went to got see Tron.  Not as good at the 1st one but still a fun movie. 

We then walked around the mall and I got a new calendar.  I also got Oryn a sleep and play outfit that says Go Bananas with little monkeys and bananas.

Then we went home and ate leftovers for dinner.  Then AD and I played the Wii.
Posted by Eric at 10:36 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Happy Decorated Tree Day

Had a great Christmas Day. We each has a piece of the Opłatek and had a great lunch with ham, turkey, a sweet potato casserole, stuffing, mashed potatoes with gravy and a broccoli morsels. Followed by booze cake (the way Nana use to make it) and a really sweet pie made with Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and Hershey's Kisses.

Then opened presents. DD had me this year and got me a roll out piano. It pretty cool. Oryn had his presents to open for his 1st Christmas.


Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 10:36 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, December 24, 2010

Wesołych Świąt

Got to finally see my nephew. Cute little guy. Most of the day was hanging out. JK and AD made eggs and hash browns for breakfast and made lasagna, bean salad. They also made oreal truffles for dessert. There were good and sweeeet.

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Posted by Eric at 10:32 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Flying Again

A day of flying. This time with DD. Both flights were uneventful which is always good.

AD picked us up and I met bed.

Posted by Eric at 10:22 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Spending Time with Bonnie

DD and I went to meet Bonnie at Souplantation. I miss this place. Lots of fresh stuff. Then went back to Bonnie's to hang out. That was fun.

Then to weekday Mass. This time I got to see DD be an alter server.

Then I dragged DD to the reef. A spot in front of the Reef restaurant near the Queen Mary where you can see across the water downtown Long Beach. I used to go there many times when I lived there.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Hanging out with DD and Good Friends

DD had to go to a memorial for one of his neighbors that passed away. I went to Ruby's and got a ruby turkey burger. Got back to pick up DD and get a hand made milkshake from Carl's Jr. It was so good and it had whipped cream on top. DD and I drove down PCH to the Huntington Beach cliffs which were nice considering that his has been raining here since I got here pretty much nonstop. Watched the waves for a bit and then left for church since DD goes to weekday Mass when he can. I went since I was there.

Then to pancake house. I was craving cheese omelets. Then dropped DD off back at the church since he was helping with decorating and putting up banners inside the church. I went to Dennis and Chrissy's to hang out with them and their kids Kat, Liz and Diana. Chrissy even made cookies for me. They were good. It was great to see them all.

Posted by Eric at 10:14 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, December 20, 2010

Back in LA

Landed in LA and DD picked me up. We then went to an Asian buffet. It was good with lots of seafood. The crab cakes were the best thing there. DD agreed.

Then it was time to find DD a new computer. We 1st looked at the Macs since they are easier to use than microsuck. When we got there, the look on DD's face was all I need to know. So I say to him to let's go get you a pc. DD has been using a pc for so many years that having him switch operating systems did not seem like good idea. Also the macs were $500 more that the pc is.

So we went to Best Buy and got DD a new HP quad core computer with a 6 gigs of memory and a terabyte hard drive. Took it home, turned it on and it works. We also got DD an external hard drive so it can automatically backup his internal drive.

Posted by Eric at 10:10 PM | Comments (0)

Traveling Again

So. Christmas is coming so for me that means travel. And travel means the ongoing fun of flying. I remember when flying was fun. Ok, at least uneventful. So this year I am leaving from a new city.

Years before I, AD and JK would fly from where ever we are currently living (we seem to have been moving a lot in the last 5 years) to So Cal. This year there has been a lot of changes. First, Mom now leaves with AD and JK in Spokane. Second, AD and JK now has a little guy Oryn. So Christmas is going to be up with them this year.

So DD has had the same computer for about 5 years or more and it is really running slow. It does not even have a gig of ram. Something like 448 megs and constantly running on virtual memory. DD needs a new computer. He also needs help getting one and transferring his files from one computer to the other. So how can I do that from Spokane? So here I am now on a flight to LA to help DD and to visit Bonnie since she unfortunately will not be joining us in Spokane.

The flight is uneventful as it should be and typing this on Heather. I love my new little netbook. She is so pretty.

Oh one funny thing happened. From Lafayette to Houston I take a small propeller plane. When we landed we were greeted by a shuttle since we landed out on the tarmac. We all got in, it drove maybe half a mile or less and then stopped to let us out. What? We could have walked it. Other airports I have been to have us walk. It was such a waste of time. O well.

Posted by Eric at 2:56 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

The List Continues

Woke up at "Ron's Hotel" (we were joking about that all last evening). Ron got me a muffin from across the street for breakfast.

Then to pick up George on the way to Fry's. While there I had to get a few things. I thought they might have the memory I wanted so I would not have to order it online and have it shipped. They did. So now I can upgrade my Linux Mint to 64 bit and see 8 Gigs of memory.

I also got a 2 terrabyte internal hard drive (I am running out of space with my 640 gig drive).

I mainly came for some cheap usb flash drives and a case for Heather. No case for Heather. They all looked like luggage. I got the usb drives. Since Heather did not come with Microsuck 7 DVD recovery disks I have to get usb ones. But you have to have 2. One for the system recovery and the other for the application recovery. They can not be on the same drive. After I do that. I will either dual boot with Linux Mint or wipe windows off.

That is it. Oh I did take some Thanksgiving leftovers home. Yummy.

Then took the drive home. And end of a nice and successful vacation.

Posted by Eric at 10:08 AM | Comments (0)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Things on the List

Since I have been in Louisiana, I have been missing things that I liked in Galveston but can not get here. So today and tomorrow are about getting things on my list.

1 - 1st was the car service. I have been taking my car to the Honda place for years. They know me and are always good to me and my car. So I dropped my car off and George and I went to...

2 - Salsas. Had to have the green salsa. We both get the Enchiladas Bronco which has fajita chicken topped with red sauce and queso. It is still good.

Then picked up my car. Feels great.

3 - Then to Randalls to get the Hensen's Black Cherry soda. They some how do not have it where I live.

4 - Went to Spec's. There is an orange liqueur called Orangel that I can not find here. I mix it with 7up and a splash of orange juice. Got some of that.

5 - Then to Mosquito Cafe to get the incredible Lemonade Dreamcake. I got 2. One for now and the other for later.

6 - Then to Ron's for some wine, organ playing and conversation. I stayed the night at George's mom's last night. Tonight I am staying at "Ron's Hotel."

What a nice evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:12 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Pumpkin Pie Day

I was invited by George and his Mom to have Thanksgiving Day with them. It was not major with lots of different foods which would not have been practical with just the 3 of us. He had turkey, ham (I love ham), sweet potatoes with bacon on top, mashed potatoes and gravy and broccoli and cheese. And for dessert, Pumpkin Pie.

Thanks guys for having me.

Posted by Eric at 8:02 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Zydeco Festival

My new friend Micah and I went to a zydeco festival just north of Lafayette. It was in an open field with live zydeco music and good food.  The bands were good and a lot of people were dancing.  We 1st had these hush puppy like things filled with crab and shrimp and a side of jambalaya.  They were so good.  We then had fried alligator on a stick which was also really good.  One good thing about my new city is all the festivals and really good food.

Posted by Eric at 9:08 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Swamp Tours

DD and I went to St Martinville.  A small town just outside of Lafayette.  We went to a small rustic French restaurant and got one of the best gumbo I have had.  DD really thought it was the best.  A nice big bowl of it filled with shrimp.  We then went on a swamp tour.  It was 2 hours long filled with alligators, spiders, cypress trees, swamp plants and birds (like the Great Egret, and the Great Blue Heron). It was a lot of fun and the swamp tour guide was really knowledgeable about the swamp and how to navigate it.  DD really enjoyed it.

Posted by Eric at 8:50 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, August 20, 2010

All Over the Floor

Got plastic boxes for the bathroom since there is no linen closet.  Got rid of most of the boxes.  Now I have everything all over the floor.

Posted by Eric at 8:48 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Blue Dog

DD and I went to lunch/dinner at the Blue Dog Cafe for authentic Cajun food.  We had a cup of gumbo with dinner.  We both thought the food was very good.  Then home and cleaned out more boxes with DVD's, CD's and video tapes.

Posted by Eric at 8:42 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Greek in a Gas Station

Showed DD around the college, my small shared office (I miss my big office I had at Galveston College) and the studio.  Back home, we finally figured out the configuration of downstairs.  The couch has to be at an angle in the middle of the room, not on the wall to be able to see the TV and to have the recliner also see the TV.  The downstairs is not shaped very well but we now can at least make it work. We ate lunch at a Greek and Lebanese place inside the gas station store.  It was surprisingly really good.

Posted by Eric at 8:38 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

More Boxes

Had to be at work from 12-6p instead of help DD unpack.  My computer, email and phone are set up in my office at school.  I am feeling a little more like a professor.  Went home and unpacked more boxes.

Posted by Eric at 8:34 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, August 16, 2010

Boring Meeting and Unpacking

I have not worked at a college or school gig that has not had a 1st of the year meeting that was useful and informative.  It is usually long, boring and drawn out.  Most of the stuff could have been emailed.  So instead of unpacking, I am forced to sit for 6 hours with "stuff that should have just been" is talked about and drawn out.

Finally got home and I set up my computer and studio while DD unpacked the books and put them on the book shelves.  We also unpacked all of the boxes in the kitchen.

Posted by Eric at 8:26 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, August 15, 2010


I continued the long process which began yesterday of unpacking.  Unpacked my clothes and most of the boxes in my bedroom and picked up DD from the airport.

Posted by Eric at 8:24 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

I am an uncle

My brother and his wife had their baby today.  It is 8 pound and 2 ounces.  I can not believe I am an uncle.

Posted by Eric at 8:20 PM | Comments (0)

At My New Home

Got up form sleeping on the floor because I did not grab the power cord for the air bed inflater before it was packed in a box.  The movers showed up at 9:10a.  They were quick, efficient, strong, friendly and very professional.  They were finished unpacking the truck at 11:48a.  Then went to the cable company to grab my cable box and modem.

On the way back home I saw an Asian buffet.  I have been leery about Asian (Chinese) buffets since Quartz and I went to a really bad one were everything tasted like soap.  But I went in. When I went in I all kinds of people here and it was decorated nicely.  Went and got my 1st place of stuff.  It was very good, especially for a buffet.

Posted by Eric at 8:10 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Bye Galveston

Hey it is Friday the 13th.  For me that is good luck.  Woke up and said bye to Ron and his awesome pipe organ.  Took the cable box back and then went to lunch with George to Mario's.  After lunch we went back to my apartment and packed my car with stuff that I did not want the movers to take (like my computer) and stuff they could not take (like liquids and cleaning supplies.  Said bye to my apartment of 6 years. Turned in my apartment key to my friend and manager Amy.  Gave her a hug and say bye.  Then bye to George.

I then took a last look at the island.  I drove to the west end of the seawall to fly my small kite.  Then to the east end were I would see large cargo ships go by.  Then my last drive through downtown with memories of Mardi Gras, island friends and art walks.  Then had my last look at the historic homes on the way to the ferry.  On to the ferry and I was officially off the island and on my way to my new home and new city.  

Posted by Eric at 10:56 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, August 12, 2010

There Goes My Stuff

The 3 movers came to pack my stuff.  They were fast and were finished in a few hours. They then packed up the truck.  George and I ate and I said bye to Salsas.  Without a bed at my place I stayed over at Ron's to sleep. 

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


So from Monday to today I have been packing stuff I have boxes for like my studio equipment.  Since I have less than a week to pack because of being hired this close to the beginning of the semester, I have to have movers pack.  Not what I wanted but it must me done.

Posted by Eric at 10:44 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Not So Good

Just to make sure I made the right decision yesterday about the townhome, I still looked at other places.  The houses were ok on the inside but not so good on the outside.  Another townhome I found had 3 bedrooms but each of the bedrooms were smaller than my 2 bedrooms.  I want a big space for my music studio to inspire me to compose.  So I now feel confident in my choice.

Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, August 6, 2010


Looked at apartments, condos townhouses and houses to rent.  Some nice but small rooms, some bigger rooms but not so nice.  Around 3p I found the perfect place.  A 2 bedroom, 2 bath townhouse.  I knew it was where I wanted to live as soon as I walked in.  The 2nd bedroom upstairs is like a loft that has a nice open feeling with an area of the wall cut out so I can look downstairs at the front door.

Posted by Eric at 10:58 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Searching for a Home

After doing a lot of calling on the phone for this move, George and I headed to Lafayette to find a place for me to live.  But before we left the Houston are, we wanted to be filled with food.  So of course we went to BJ's Pizza.  After 4 hours we arrived in Scott (just outside of Lafayette) at our hotel.

Posted by Eric at 10:44 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Interview Time

I had my interview today.  We went to CC's Community Coffee House to relax before the interview.  I had a blueberry muffin and Mom got a coffee.  I really hope I get this one.  It might be my last shot to teach at a college until next year.  We then went to Lafayette visitor center, picked up some stuff and say space plants (they looked like something out of a science fiction show). Then started on the road. After 2 hours towards Galveston we stopped at a Cracker Barrel to eat. Then on the road again. We hit some hard rain, thunder and lightning which made driving slow but we eventually got there.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, May 31, 2010

A Play, Sushi and Chocolate Cake

Normally I write a lot and every day about my trips in here but since this trip really is a vacation and I am doing very little and hanging out with family, there is not as much to write about.  This weekend was the play 1984 based on the book of the same name.  AD directed the play.  It was a good production.  AD had me play a bit part all 3 nights.  It played Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday matinee at 2p.  Sunday after the show we went to Azteca Mexican Restaurant.  Really good salsa, more tomatoy than Salsas.

Today we just hung out for most of the day.  Partly to relax and partly because it was raining.  We did go to in downtown.  We all got a bento box except Mom who got 2 veggie rolls and a bowl of rice.  AD and JK also had 2 1/2 California rolls between them.  DD and I shared a couple of special rolls and a piece of salmon and yellow tail (really good) sushi.  Then to the store to buy dessert and other groceries.  Dessert was chocolate cake or ice cream (cookies and cream of cake flavored ice cream).  I had chocolate cake and the cake ice cream. Yummy.

Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, May 28, 2010


Slept in late (This is becoming a pattern) and hung out with everyone except AD who came home from work around noon.  Around 3:30p we went to Tomato Street.  I got a Lazonni.  Its a 1/2 lasagna and 1/2 pizza.  Pretty good.  Then to AD's play his is directing at his college which is 1984. 
Posted by Eric at 10:34 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Rivers and Waterfalls

Slept in late and AD and JK were already at work.  So I had cereal and worked on my Wind piece.  AD came home after picking up Mom and DD from the airport.  We talked, made and ate sandwiches.  JK came home around 4P and we all went to downtown Spokane and ate at the Red Robin.  They had bottomless root beer floats. Yummy.  We then walked around the Spokane river to see the rapids and falls.  What a great looking river with nice waterfalls.
Posted by Eric at 10:28 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Always Crappy Adventures of Flying

So another plane flight.  The long drive up to the airport was surprisingly easy.  No traffic jams, stops or parking lots.  So I am thinking this might be a good sign.  Nope.  I am flying Frontier.  Never have before and it can not be any worse that crappy US Airways.  Not that this is Frontier's fault, but apparently (I was told) that there was a tornado in Denver where my connecting flight was.  So my flight was delayed from 7p to 8:30p.  So now I will need food because of the delay so what is open?  I am not in the nice terminal C with good places to eat.  I am in terminal A where a Chili's is closed (at 7p? How stupid is that.) and a Mexican grill which was not even open when I arrived in the terminal.  Everything was closed except stupid McD's.  What a crappy terminal and airport.  So I had a fillet o fish and chicken nuggets.  Oh they were out of milkshakes also.

So the plane arrives late as expected.  They gave us free TV because of the delay.  That was nice (which usually costs $6 by sliding your credit card).  We arrive around Denver and we can not land.  We are told that there are lightning and wind sheers.  So the airport is only letting planes land about every 8 minutes.  So we were circling for 45 minutes.  Denver?  With all this weather?  Who would have thought?

Land in Denver and get of the plane and I hear over the loud speaker hat the Spokane flight is on its final boarding call at gate 36a.  So in a typical movie moment, I ran to the gate.  It left within minutes after I got on.  Someone was helping me today.  Came to Spokane at about 12:30a instead of 10:30p like I was suppose to.  Now tired.  Nite.
Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

An Afternoon with Art

Got up and ate my free hotel breakfast.  A good spread with waffles, biscuits and Gravy, cereal, hard boiled eggs, muffins and of course OJ. 

Checked out of the hotel and want to the Minneapolis Institute of Art.  I of course went to the paintings 1st and got to see close up a Monet, a Warhol, and a Magritte.  I looked at the Magritte for at least 10 minutes.  It was amazing.  Enjoyed other art pieces.  Ate at the cafe there and had an artichoke pizza.  Really good. 

Then to the airport.  1st flight was uneventful.  On the 2nd flight, some dude put his seat back "in my face," then put his glasses on and put his sunglasses cord actually in my face by a few inches.  So I lightly played with it like it was sticking to the seat.  Not knowing it was me, he took it away and thought it was not comfortable to do it anymore.  I like screwing with people who deserve it.
Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Checking Out the City

Got up and had the hotel free breakfast and then headed to the interview.  Did the questions and did the demonstration.  This time to conduct and rehearse with a choir made of a small group of students.  They just built a new fine arts building.  I would not mind working there.

I then went to see the St. Paul Cathedral in St. Paul.  A big and old cathedral with a large dome and large statues of St. Paul and St. Matthews.  There was a mass of good Friday going on so I sat in the back.  I heard the choir in the balcony singing a couple of Renaissance pieces.  The sound bounced around the cathedral and filled the room.  It was an incredible sound.

After mass I went to the Mall of America.  It is huge with an amusement park in the center.  It is 4 levels and 4 sides.  It was not easy trying to avoid eating meat today and for me specifically, chicken while trying to find something to eat at the mall.  I did finally find a Thai lace with a Thai spiced salmon.  So I got that with fried rice and mixed veggies and watched the roller coaster go by.  Oh, I did go to the dollar store in the mall and found . . . a white chocolate bunny.  Finally.  It is so hard to find them.

After enough walking, I called Jennifer to look on the internet for some fun place to go and the found the Artist Quarter.  It is a downstairs music club featuring great musicians.  Tonight was the Afro Jazz group.  I got a tequila sunrise and found a table.  It was a trio with guitar, bass and drums.  Each a very good musician and kept the long tunes interesting.  The drummer was very good adding tasteful fills.  An great evening of music.
Posted by Eric at 10:25 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Another Interview Trip

I wake up and Jennifer is still dead in bed from her adventure from yesterday.  Got dressed, ate and was off to the airport for another interview.  This was in Inver Hills which is a few minutes from St. Paul Minnesota.  The flights were uneventful with a slight delay on the 2nd flight because they needed to fix the captain's chair.  How did that get broken?  To the hotel and had Jimmy Johns for dinner.  Then sleep.
Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, January 29, 2010

More Traveling Crap

I got picked up by the music coordinator and search committee chair from the hotel.  My st interview was with the Dean of Academics at 1:30p.  Great Interview.  She asked good questions and I answered really well.  I then toured the college and music department myself until 3:30p for my 2nd interview with the search committee.  I did really well with my presentation (act as the committee is a beginning voice class) and the questions.

Was then taken to the airport my another professor of the college around 5p so I can go home and see my girlfriend.  Nope.  There was a major snow storm in Charlotte, North Carolina and all flights to there are canceled on all airlines.  There were no other flights to Houston on any other airline. 

Airlines suck.  What happened to the red eye flights?  Oh, since airline prices fluctuate up and down like a yo yo, no one wants to fly anymore so there are less flights.  I like traveling.  I hate flying.  It is not fun anymore.

So thanks to my wonederful girlfriend and her internet searching ability, she found a good hotel, the Days Inn, near the airport for $69.   A shuttle got me a the airport, dropped my crap off, and the hotel shuttle took me to the Skyline Restaurant.  I wanted real food.  Pretty good chicken parmesan.  Now for some sleep.
Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

In One Word: Nothing

Wow. It looks like it has been awhile since I have written here.  There is not much to put here since all I do these days is stay at home cleaning, watching TV and playing with Mercury.

So today I go to the airport for an interview at a college in Connecticut.  My flight left around noon.  Dropped Quartz off at work, got some kolaches and left on a place to Charlotte, North Carolina.  Then the same place goes to Hartford.  Well, 6 hours later, we could not land in Hartford because the winds were so strong that the breaks on the plane would not sufficiency stop the plane.  So we were diverted to Providence, Road Island.  Brilliant.  Luckily the airline ordered us a bus to take us to Hartford.  They said the bus would arrive in 15 minutes.  Ya right.  It arrived 1 1/2 hours later.  Got on for a 2 hour ride to the Hartford airport through fresh fallen snow.  Arrived at the Hartford airport a little past 10:30p.  I was picked up by one of the professors at the college and her husband.  They took me to dinner since I had not had a real meal all day.  By the time I got to the hotel, it was midnight.  12 hours of traveling hell.  But wait, more fun tomorrow.
Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Came in Early

DD, Mom, AD, JK and I went to Macaroni Grill for lunch.  We all then dropped by Bonnie's so AD, JK and I can say bye.  I said bye to everyone and DD took me to the airport.  When I got there I was over 2 hours early.  I saw on the departure screen that there was an earlier flight that was delayed.  So I went to the gate and asked if they had room on the early flight.  They said there were 2 more seats left.  So I got in.  I got to see my girlfriend Jennifer over 2 hours earlier. Yay.
Posted by Eric at 10:40 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Food, Speakers and Webcam

This trip has worked out well.  I have been able to see all my friends here that wanted to see me. So today DD's place was a meeting place for another friend of mine Andrew and his new girlfriend Trina.  Mom also came by.  So we have AD, JK, DD, Mom, Andrew, Trina and I going to Claim Jumpers for lunch.  Good food and great conversation.

DD and I went to get some batteries for his new wireless speakers.  DD has been wanting to get a pair of webcams.  I wanted to make sure they were good, had what we needed and cheap.  We found one at Target yesterday but not two.  So today was found 2 webcams with build in mic for $20.  Pretty cool.  Then back to DD's to try out the speakers.  They worked really well for $10.  I set up the webcam and called my girlfriend Jennifer to try them out.  They work pretty well.  It was strange talking to her and seeing her on the computer screen.  My family talked to her a bit before going and watching a movie and having dessert of pumkin or apple pie or booze cake.  Yummy.
Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, December 28, 2009

Family and Friends

Lunch at Souplantation with DD, AD, JK Mom and I.  Ya we really like this place.  We then walked to Best Buy and helped DD buy a new, bigger monitor.  We then walked to the Lakewood Mall.  At JC Penny's there was red box (I think that is what it is called) sale and DD bought 2 wireless speakers for only $10.  Pretty cool.  We also went to a Jamapies store and bought my girlfriend Jennifer a Christmas present.  I will tell when she opens it. 

Then back to DD's to hang out.  Chrissy met up with us at DD's and then went to walk around Downtown Disney with all the lighted trees and street musicians and singers.  There was a jazz vocal quartet dressed in Dickens clothes singing carols.  It was fun walking around.  Said bye to Chrissy and the rest of us had dinner at Hof's Hut.  Then the hang out at DD's before bed.   
Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Visiting Two Friends and a Family

Today I had lunch at Don Jose's with DD, AD, JK, Mom, Bonnie and Carol.  A fun lunch.  Then said bye to Carol and when to Bonnie's to hang out and see her small Christmas Tree.  At 5p, we said bye to Bonnie and went to my long time friends Dennis and Chrissy's house and their 3 kids Katherine, Liz and Diana.  They even made cookies for us.  Katherine is now in 9th grade.  I knew her and Liz since they were born.  So when they saw me they ran up to me for a big hug.  It was really nice to see them all.  We stayed and talked for a few hours.

We then said by to Dennis and the gang and went back to DD's and hung out.  AD and I went and got Taco Hell for everyone.  Then we all sat, ate and watched TV. 
Posted by Eric at 10:28 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Show and Tell

AD, JK, DD and I want to Claim Jumper for lunch.  Then back to DD's. Mom came by for show and tell.  I showed Mom new music I had composed as well as new pictures I have taken since the last time I saw her.  AD played some of his new music and a DVD of the play he directed recently.  We then ordered pizza and had leftover pumpkin or apple pie.
Posted by Eric at 10:56 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Decorated Tree Day

AD, JK, DD, Mom and Bonnie and I went to Marcine (my Dad's sister) and her husband Mike's house for the Christmas dinner party. Now I mean a party. Mike's brothers, their wives and kids, and lately the kids boyfriends-girlfriends family. Dinner is always buffet style. We then did the white elephant present game. That was fun. I did not get anything good this time. O well.  It was a good evening with lots of food, drink, desserts and conversation.

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 10:14 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wesołych Świąt

DD, AD, JK and I woke up late.Mom and Bonnie came over around 1p.  We snacked on veggies with dip and crackers with a cheese bar (Last year it was a cheese ball) and sat watching what ever crap was on TV.  

Then dinner was at about 6p. Carol (JK's Mom) came a little later.

We usually had Gołabki (Cabbage Roll-Ups) Nana made but she passed away in a couple months ago Bonnie, who helped Nana make them, understandably could not make them this year.  Maybe next year.  So we had perogies instead.  We also had turkey, ham, mashed potatoes with gravy, stuffing, sweet potatoes, veggies and rolls.

During December Mom picks names out of a hat pretending to be one of the family. For example, she says that she is Adam, she picks a name and the name she picks Adam had to get a that person a present. This year I had AD. I, with the help of Jennifer, got AD a nice professionally looking scarf. He really liked it.  Mom had me. She got me a nice long sleeve shirt and sleep bottoms (my other sleep bottom was wearing out so it was perfect). 

Then dessert.  There was pumpkin pie, booze cake, apple pie and a box of pralines I got from New Orleans.

Wesołych Świąt (Merry Christmas)!

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Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

AD and JK are Here.

I went to lunch at Souplantation with DD, Mom and Bonnie.  DD and I then went to a school playground to play basketball.  Man we suck, but it was fun.  AD and JK flew in around 5p and joined DD and I at Hof's Hut for dinner.  We grabbed some last minute Christmas dinner items and back to DD where we hung out and watched a movie AD brought.
Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Down to See Friends

I rented a car so I could drive down to San Diego to see a couple of my friends.  I 1st went to go see Kimberly and her new baby.  Cute little guy.  I met Kimberly 13 years ago.  We dated for a couple of years and eventually realized that we do not work in a romantic relationship but we make great friends.  So now we are best friends.   We hung out, showed her some pictures and played her some music I have composed recently and talked for until about 5p when I went to go see my other friend Giobbe for dinner.  I have known Giobbe since 1st grade and have remained good friends since.  We had dinner at a Thai restaurant which was pretty good.  When back to his house to talk until about 8p.  Then back to Kimberly's to hang out until Midnight.  A great day with my long time friends.
Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, December 21, 2009

Heading to SoCal

After spending a great weekend with Jennifer relaxing, making Indian food and banana peanut butter chocolate muffins it was time to get up this morning, pack my stuff back up and head for the airport.  I had Thai buffet lunch with her before I dropped her off at work and i drove to the airport.  I still hate flying.  Continental is still better than most airlines, I still hate flying.  I purposly made sure I got the aisle seat but when I got to the gate, the checker handed me another thicket with another seat which ended up to be a middle seat.  I hate the middle seat. 

So after a little over a 3 hour flight I was is SoCal.  DD picked me up and we ate at Friscos.  I had a really good pizza.  Then walked next door and got a couple of Crispy Cream donuts since they are no more left out in Houston.  Then to bed.
Posted by Eric at 10:52 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Going Home from New Orleans

Ate breakfast at the Magnolia Cafe.  We both had French toast on real French bread.  Jennifer got hers with bacon and eggs and I got mine with bacon, eggs and sausage.  Good French bread with Creole spices.  Then off to home.  Jennifer drove from Baton Rouge to near the border of Texas and I drove the rest of the way.  Lots of traffic on the road. We are now back to the most comfortable bed in the world.
Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Checking Out the Mississippi

We had breakfast at  Café Envie in the French Quarter. Jennifer had a sandwich wrap and I had 3 ham omelets. Both of ours came with hash browns. I am not a big hash brown fan but these were good and Jennifer also really liked them and she is a hash brown fan.

We then drove down along the Mississippi to find some swamplands. Saw the wide river of the Mississippi, some nice views but no swamp.

Back to the French Quarter to the French Market and got some more Pralines. Then went to Coops for some Jambalaya. Good and spicy with ham and rabbit. Walked around some more and found May Bailey's Bar. The sign outside the bar said it had $3 wine during happy hour. So we decided to go in. We made it 3 minutes before happy hour was over. We each got a nice glass of Riesling. The bar is really nice to look at and our Riesling was really good and it was only $3. The bar is connected to the Dauphine Hotel and it once was a brothel.

Then went back to the Gumbo Shop but this time for a blackened chicken po-boy. This completed the trying of the foods that specifically came from New Orleans. Then back to the hotel for our last night.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, November 27, 2009

A Great Day in New Orleans

For breakfast, we went to the French Market to Cafe du Monde for beignets. Jennifer had Cafe Au Lait and I had hot chocolate. Very good hot chocolate.

We then walk the riverwalk along the Mississippi. Jennifer took pictures and a video of the big boats. Then back to the hotel to get my car. We drove to the Garden District where there are really nice big old houses. For lunch we went to a Chinese / Japanese place. It as bad Chinese and sushi. O well.

Then drove down Magazine Street. It has cute shops along the street for a quite a few blocks. Then back to the hotel and took a siesta.

At 4:30p we went back to the French Quarter and ate at the Gumbo Shop. I had chicken gumbo and Jennifer had seafood gumbo. It was really good. The best gumbo I have ever had.

We then walked down the crowed, neon lighted Bourbon Street. We went to the Maison Bourbon Jazz Club. There were some awesome jazz being played by the band playing piano, bass, drums, trumpet and clarinet. Jennifer had Irish coffee and I had hot buttered rum. We saw people drinking a Hand Grenade and the ingredients are secret and Jennifer really wanted to try one. So we each got one. There were really good. (I guess not secret anymore since I found the ingredients online.) We then ate at the Two Sisters and got a Boudin in a bun. I got a smoked sausage in a bun. Then back to the hotel.

What a great day with Jennifer in New Orleans.

Posted by Eric at 10:26 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Down to New Orleans

Today for Thanksgiving, Jennifer and I drove down to New Orleans. It is Jennifer's 1st time and my 2nd.  It is a little over a 5 hour drive.  We ate a big breakfast before we left with yogurt, bagel, oatmeal and chocolate chip banana muffins (Jennifer made them last week).  We stopped and had lunch at Subway in Louisiana.  It was past 5p when we got to New Orleans.  Our hotel, the Empress Hotel, is 2 blocks from the French Quarter.  That's cool.  Our hotel is cheap, $60 a night where other hotels in the area are at least $120 a night.  It is not a Motel 6 but we knew what we were getting in to.  We got here and it was an experience, like a hotel in Europe.  A very small room and bathroom with no closet.  Why do I need more?  We came to see the French Quarter not to live in the hotel.

We walked around the Quarter a bit and ate at the Magnolia Cafe.  I had a muffuletta and Jennifer had a crawfish etouffee. My sandwich was very good and came with seasoned fries. Then back to the hotel, got my car and drove offer the Mississippi on a large bridge. Then back over with a view of New Orleans and back to the hotel.

I am back in New Orleans.

Posted by Eric at 8:22 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

The Funeral

Today at 10a was Nana's Funeral.  It was a beautiful service.  It began with military honors which included playing taps (which was played very well with vibrato and feeling) and folding of the flag.  Then continued with a eulogy by Mom, Adam and Jean.  Then followed with a Catholic funeral mass.  I was one of the pallbearers along with DD, Adam and David. The reception was in the church hall with sandwiches, fruit and carrot cake. We then went to Bonnie's for the reading of the will and to hang out and talk.

We (Mom, Bonnie, Barbara, DD, AD, JK and I) went to the Fortune Cookie Chinese Restaurant.  Then we all went to DD's for more hanging out. 

Posted by Eric at 12:23 AM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The Viewing

AD and JK flew in today as well as Barbara, Mom's youngest sister.  DD and I went to Pancake House and AD and JK met us there.  Then we went to the viewing of Nana at the mortuary.  Mom,  Bonnie (Mom's younger sister), Barbara, DD, AD, JK and I were there 1st.  Jean (Nana's best friend for over 35 years) came a few minutes later. Some of Nan's other friends came during the viewing.  I walked up to Nana to really see that she is gone.  I touched her hand which felt like a mannequin's hand.  She really is gone.  I said bye to Nana who was and looked up and said hi to were Nana is now.  Some stayed for the Rosary.  I did not go.  I stayed outside talking to Adam and Barbara.

After the Rosary was done AD, JK, Mom, Bonnie, Barbara, DD, Jean and I went to Don Jose'.  Lots of talking about Nana and some laughs.  It was really nice seeing everyone. 

Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Back in SoCal

I arrived in SoCal today for Nana's funeral which will take place on Thursday.  I hate US airways.  No snacks. (Oh you can buy them.  For the same price you get better food in the airport and take it on the plane.  That is what I did.)  The seats are not comfortable.  After flying contenenal  a few years ago, I said I would not go back to US Airways.  Contenenal has comfortable seats (more comfortable than most airlines) and free snacks like a small pizza with salad and a small cookie. What a concept.

I only took Us Airways because they were the cheapest (considering I got them a few days ago) and they flew into Long Beach (since there were no direct flights into LA this late).  DD picked me up and ate at the Fantastic Cafe.  Had some free chips and salsa and got a turkey sandwich which was pretty good.
Posted by Eric at 11:44 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Leaving Chicago

We checked out of the hotel and had breakfast-lunch at a restaurant called Our Kitchen. I got an a cheese omelet and pancakes and they was really good. Drove to the airport and walked DD to his airline to say bye. Then I walked to mine. It was a nice to see DD and visit Chicago.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

Monday, July 20, 2009

Bye Chicago

Today was the interview. Got up, shaved, showered and went for lunch at the Jerusalem Cafe which was good. Then to the interview at the college. I think it went well. I will just have to wait and see. Then we were thinking of getting Korean food for dinner. So we looked at our GPS and DD just picked the 1st one on the list. So we drove there and discovered that the restaurant was not there anymore. But since we were in Korea town, we picked another place. 1st time DD or I had Korean food. It was pretty good and a nice adventure. We then drove along the lake through Chicago for one last look. I really like the city.

Posted by Eric at 10:16 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, July 19, 2009

On Top of the City

We ate at a local sandwich restaurant and DD and I both got a sandwich and soup. They were good. We then drove to downtown Chicago. It is a gorgeous city with the lake, the river, tall buildings and the draw bridges. DD figured since we were here, we should go on top of the Sears Tower (now called the Willis Tower. The Willis Tower? Who are they?) It took over an hour to wait in line to get tickets to wait for a 15 minute movie, then watched the 15 min movie about the history of the sears tower (I could have read about it on a wall and saved 30 minutes) before we finally got an elevator ride up to the top. It was a great view. I even stood on the plastic see through ledge.

We then went to Lake Michigan and walked along it. Walked by the big fountain which has a great view of the city. Walked down a pier to get a picture of the Chicago Harbor Lighthouse.

Here is a great view of the Chicago Skyline.

When to AM/PM for some Doritos and 7p. Then back to the hotel and had left over pizza, Doritos and 7up.

Posted by Eric at 10:16 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

From Chicago

Today was my flight. (A lot of driving to the airport these last few weeks.) This flight is for an interview in Chicago. "From ChiCAgo" (from a Steve Reich piece). DD also came to play before the interview on Monday since neither of us had been here before. We met at the Chicago airport, got our rental car and dropped our stuff at the Wyndam Drake hotel. Nice hotel. There was also a wedding reception on the 1st floor next to the bar so DD and I got a drink and watched the entertainment of cute girls in nice dresses.

We then went for real Chicago style pizza which is stuffed pizza. It looks like a pie with crust on top and bottom and cheese in between. It was real good.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Back to Houston

DD's took me to the airport for an uneventful flight to Houston. Dropped my stuff off at Jennifer's and met her and her friends at the park for volleyball. Jennifer and I then went back to her place for pizza and hanging out. My trip back home was over. Thanks DD for the place to stay and sleep.

Posted by Eric at 10:02 PM | Comments (0)

Saturday, July 11, 2009

A Day with Family and Friends

DD and I met Dave, Dennis, Chrissy and Liz (Dennis and Chrissy's kid) at Baja Sonora. Good Mexican and very inexpensive. DD then dropped me off at Nana and Bonnie's. Mom came by and we all 4 talked. I also enjoyed working on a puzzle with Nana. I was fun just hanging out.

Mom then took me to her house (the house I grew up in) to play the piano I 1st played when I was 3. It still is one of the best sounding upright pianos I have ever played. It has a nice warm sound to it.

Mom then took me to DD so I could change for my High School Reunion. I took DD's truck to the Restaurant, Don the Beachcomber. There was a buffet, a DJ and dancing and it was fun but only 80 people showed up. My graduation class had 640. So the people that I was closer friends with that I am not in contact with now were not there. I had heard that some of them could not afford to come who did not live in the area because the economy sucks right now. That might have effected a lot of them. There were a lot more at my 10 year. So I ate, drank, had cake, danced and talk with the people I knew. Hope the 30 year one will be better.

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, July 10, 2009

A Day at the Beach

Went to Ruby's with Mom on the pier at Seal Beach. Had a turkey burger with garlic fries and a chocolate coke. Then watched people wipe out while they were riding the waves on a boogie board. One had a large inflatable swimming pool animal. It looked hilarious to watch it ride the waves.

Then walked to Stone Cold Creamery and I got an "I love it" Birthday Cake Remix Ice Cream which includes cake batter ice cream, a brownie and rainbow sprinkles. We sat and watched the ocean while I was eating the ice cream concoction.

Then back to DD's to rest after being in the sun. Called Jennifer and had a nice conversation while walking around the block in the nice non humid air. Then to Claim Jumper for dinner with DD and Mom.

A nice cool day at the beach.

Posted by Eric at 10:56 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, July 9, 2009

A Day with Nana and Bonnie

Mom came by to pick me up and went to Nana's to visit Nana and Bonnie. I showed then pictures I have taken since Christmas like the New Orleans trip.

I visited them from 1-6p. It was then time to go and get dinner. I wanted to go to the sushi place that I went to with Dave last summer. So Mom and I went to Fusion sushi and met DD there. Good sushi with some of their special rolls like the Hawaiian roll and Philadelphia roll with salmon on top.

Dave and his girlfriend Cassie came by to visit and had sake. It was great finally meeting the mystery girl. He has been dating her for 3 years and every time I have come here to visit and met Dave somewhere, his girlfriend had to do something else. It was like this girl was just his imagination. Cool girl and they look good together. Great sushi and good conversation.

Posted by Eric at 10:22 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Going Home for the Summer

After what happened last summer with US Airways Blah. I now always take Continental. The flight was fine with a nice snack. Remember that this is only the snack on this airline. I had salad with with some vinaigrette dressing, a BBQ turkey sandwich and a small packed of M & M's. It was all needed for lunch.

I picked my flight to land when DD got off from work. So DD picked me up at the airport and I dropped of my stuff at his house. We then met my friend Andrew at the El Torito on the pier in Redondo beach. Good conversation while looking at the blue ocean and the crashing waves onto the beach.

Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

Friday, July 3, 2009

Lunch then Home

We packed up our stuff at the hotel and had lunch at Mr. B's. I started with Mr. B's Vodka Lemonade which was good. I then had a Gumbo Ya Ya which is a rich country style gumbo made with chicken and andouille sausage. My entree was Rosemary Chicken which is an all natural chicken breast roasted with rosemary compound butter ~ served with baby carrots, orzo and natural reduction sauce enhanced with fresh rosemary. This was incredible. The rosemary and butter was cooked under the skin. For dessert was a White Chocolate Brownie with Ice Cream. It was pretty good.

We then walked to the St. Louis Cathedral to take a look inside. Quite incredible with the murals on the walls and ceiling.

Then back to the hotel to get the car and start the drive home. A fun trip into the past.

Posted by Eric at 8:28 PM | Comments (0)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Another Day in a Town of the Past.

This morning, Ron went out to get coffee and went to the Cafe Du Monde at the Original French Market Coffee Stand and brought back some Beignets and Orange Juice. Beignet is a local pastry and it was pretty good.

Lunch was at Bayona. We both had a Champagne Cocktail. I had a Caesar-style Salad with Arugula and Preserved Lemon. It was quite good. My dessert was a nice cheese cake with black berries. It was perfect.

We then walked around looking in the antique shops. Ron's 1st floor of his house had 22 inches of water during Ike. So he is looking for some unique living room chairs, possibly of French design and 3 simple pedestals. Unfortunately we did not find any he liked. We then walked to the Praline Connection. Jennifer wanted something unique to New Orleans and the Praline Connection is known for great pralines. I got 2 original, a rum one, a chocolate one and a coconut one. Then back to the hotel to rest before dinner.

Around 8p, Marcus, Ron's friend of almost 25 years, picked us up from the hotel to go to dinner. The place we wanted to go was closed for some reason. So he took up to Maple Street Cafe near the college. I had an artichoke soup (hot this time). I think I prefer it chilled instead of hot. I had lemon chicken with fettuccine which was quite good. For dessert I had Key Lime Pie which was incredible. We had a great conversation. Marcus then took us to the synagogue where he plays organ. The main room is huge and the tabernacle (the alter area) is incredible.

We then went down to Bourbon Street and had a drink in one of the bars to check out the night life. What a wild street.

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM | Comments (0)

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

I Can Not Believe I am Finally in New Orleans

For 5 years I have been trying to go and see New Orleans and am finally here. I got up and took a shower. Then Ron and I walked around the French Quarter for a bit while I took pictures. We both had a muffin and orange juice at the coffee shop Café Envie. My blueberry muffin was really good. It blew away the muffins I get at stupid Starbucks at an airport. The times most people come to New Orleans is between September to May. June, July and August is not for most tourist. So even though it is hot and humid (just like Galveston) I got to see what it is like here without a lot of other tourist. I can see how the locals live. Ron really likes it here and has been coming here since the 90's.

For lunch we went to Café Degas. We each had a unique salad. I had La Salade Esplanade which had
organic baby greens, cucumber, carrots, tomatoes and a Dijon vinaigrette and had for dessert a Lemon Icebox Cake which was great.

We then drove to the Sculpture Garden next to the Museum. A nice open tree filled garden with some nice sculptures. Then to an area in New Orleans where there are big houses before the 1900's. Some nice architecture. Then back to the hotel to cool off and rest.

Around 6:30p, we walked a couple of blocks to the Mississippi River. A very wide river. We walked down Royal Street and then down to the crazy neon lights of Bourbon Street. The crazy and noisy neon lights only lasts for 4 to 5 blocks on Bourbon Street. The rest of the street is quiet like most of the French Quarter. It was a sight.

Then to dinner at Muriel's. We started with a bottle of Zolo 2008 Argentina wine. We both had the soup of the day which was chilled Cream of Artichoke Soup which was really good. We also both had the Wood Grilled Fish Of The Day which was Yellow Fin Tuna served with a Panzanella salad of Arugula, Cucumbers, Creole tomatoes, and Red onions with grilled French bread, finished with a basil pesto. For dessert I had a Vanilla Bean Creme Brulee which was incredible. A day of great food and great sights.

Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM | Comments (0)

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Weclome to New Orleans

Ron came by at 10a and started our way to New Orleans. The trip began with a drive down the seawall to the ferry to the Bolivar Peninsula. Then got on the 10 freeway to Beaumont to eat somewhere Ron wanted to go but when we got there, it was closed until the 6th. We think it was closed because of the massive construction on the street. So we continued on to a truck stop and ate at Subway. O well. I also got a root beer float at Wendy's right next to Subway.

We crossed the Louisiana boarder at 3:30p. Later than expected because of the road construction along the way.

Got to the Hotel Provincial. A nice place in the French Quarter. We relaxed for a bit and then went to dinner at August. The food was incredible. We had a free appetizer/1st course dish. It was a whipped egg and it was served in the egg shell. An interesting sight. For my entree I had the Lemon Fish and for dessert was a rum cake with white chocolate around the cake.

Then back to the hotel to sleep.

Posted by Eric at 6:34 PM | Comments (0)

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Back to My Current Home

Today is my leaving day. I was joined by Mom, DD, Nana, Bonnie, AD and JK for lunch at Souplantation. It was fun. Then DD took me to the LA Airport. The flight was uneventful, which is the way I like it. I did have a great conversation with a guy who worked on the animation of the characters in the game Rock Band 2. Then went to Jennifer's to say hi and stay the night instead of driving all the way back to Galveston at midnight. That is it. The end of my Christmas Vacation back home. I enjoyed it. Thanks everyone.

Posted by Eric at 11:24 PM

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Finally See Inside My Lighthouse

DD, JK, AD, Mom and I went to see the Point Fermin Lighthouse. My parents have been taking my brother and I to this lighthouse and the surrounding park since I was little. During that time it was not open to the public. It was restored and opened in November 2003. By then I was living in San Francisco and ever since when I came home for Christmas or the Summer and I went to see it, it was closed. Finally I got to see the inside of the lighthouse. We went on the 2p tour. We got to see all the rooms and go up to the top. What a view. I bought a Point Fermin Lighthouse pin for a dollar to remember this day.

We then had dinner at Claim Jumper. We then went to Downtown Disney to walk around. Then to Hof's Hut for dessert. What a great day.

Posted by Eric at 11:06 PM

Friday, December 26, 2008

Family Time

DD, AD, JK, Mom and I went to Nana's house for the day to visit. I showed my hurricane pictures to Bonnie and Nana. It was nice to hang out with them. Then DD, AD, JK, Mom and I went to get sushi at Fusion Sushi. Mom got the cucumber and avocado rolls, AD got teriyaki chicken and his 1st sushi, tuna roll. JK, DD and I shared a combination of special rolls like the Hawaiian roll, an asparagus roll and a special Philadelphia roll. It was fun. Then walked around Boarders. Then to DD's to hang out before bed.

Posted by Eric at 10:00 PM

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Happy Decorated Tree Day

AD, JK, DD and I went to Marcine (my Dad's sister) and her husband Mike's house for the Christmas dinner party. Now I mean a party. Mike's brothers, their wives and kids, and lately the kids boyfriends-girlfriends family. Dinner is always buffet style. We then did the white elephant present game. That was fun. I actually got something nice this time. I got a 3 CD set of Celtic Christmas songs. It was a fun evening. I grew up with my cousins (Marcine's daughters) and it was really nice to visit them.

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Wesołych Świąt

Christmas began with being woken up by hearing JK and then DD working out on DD's stationary bike. Then for breakfast I had English Muffins. Then Mom came over followed by Nana and Bonnie. We snacked on veggies with dip and crackers with a cheese ball. I played the DVD of my choir concert.

Then dinner was at about 5p. Carol (JK's Mom) came a little later because of work.

Nana made Gołabki (Cabbage Roll-Ups) which is pronounced "goh-wab-kee." This Christmas there were 2 different kinds, one with meat and the other with buckwheat. I always like to eat the meat one. We also had turkey, mashed potatoes with gravy, stuffing, sweet potatoes, corn, green beans and rolls. For desert was pumpkin pie and apple pie.

During December Mom picks names out of a hat pretending to be one of the family. For example, she says that she is Adam, she picks a name and the name she picks Adam had to get a that person a present. This year I had DD. I hand made a calander with pictures I had taken when DD and I took trips. He really liked it. AD had me. He got me a a DVD of the movie Airplane and bought handcrafed chop sticks. They look really cool.

We then sang Christmas carols with Mom playing the guitar. It was really fun.

As always, a great Christmas with the family.

Wesołych Świąt (Merry Christmas)!

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Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Lights

Today DD, AD, JK, Mom and I went to eat Mexican dinner at Acapulco. We then went to Naples to walk around and look at the decorated houses. It was fun looking at all the lights and decorations. One house had 2 very tall lighted candy canes with a disco ball between them with disco music played and a bubble machine. It was pretty cool.

Posted by Eric at 10:56 PM

Monday, December 22, 2008

Hanging Out

Got up and made DD and I an omelet. DD said it was good. Then Mom came over and hung out. DD had to go to the airport to pick upi AD and JK. I showed Mom pictures and player her some of the ideas I have for my orchestra piece. AD and JK (big surprise) came in late. Then to Hof's Hut for dinner.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Lucky Day - Day 2

For lunch, Jennifer and I went to Chuy's which usually has a crowded parking lot. Well since it is lucky day, we found a spot the 1st time we drove though the parking lot.

Then to the airport. Now it is a precarious time to travel with all the delayed flights this time of year. Since I am coming from a place that does not snow to a place that does not snow, I thought I would not be effected. Well I was. It was supposed to leave at 5:18p. It got delayed to 8:05p because our plane coming from Austin had mechanical problems. So they had to change planes hence the delay. While I was waiting, I was talking to the 2 pilots that was going to fly our plane to LA. It was fun talking to them. They told me stories of previous flights. The notice a famous actor that was also waiting to get on our plane. I had notice him earlier but just thought he looked like the actor. They saw someone talk a picture with him and figured it as him. I later her someone ask him if it was him and he said ya. Elijah Wood was on our plane. Pretty cool.

We got on the plane and more delay for 20 minutes. There was an argument with a couple of passengers before we got on the place. One tried to cut in line and the other said do not talk to my wife like that. I was in the plane when it happened but we had to wait until it was sorted out. Stupid, self centered people. Everyone in the US is having problem with travel. Be a grown up and deal with it instead of making it crappy for everyone else.

We finally left the gate at 9:04p and were waiting on the runway to take off. We were 20th in line because the airport was only using 2 runways because of the winds. So they were not using the other 2 runways. Let us just add more unrelated delays. We finally took off at 9:42p. OK let us compare. I was suppose to leave at 5:18p and ended up leaving at 9:42p.

I flew continental. It was the 2nd time I ever flew this airline and it is pretty cool. This is what I got just for a "snack." A small cookie size cheese pizza, salad with ranch dressing on the side and a stick of Twix. That is just a snack. Their meals like lunch and dinner are better. Last time I flew with them dinner was lasagna. Not bad.

So I got to LA past midnight instead of 7:30p. I am tired. Sleep time.

Posted by Eric at 10:30 PM

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Last Day and then Off to Home

I happened to get up to go to the bathroom and heard DD getting in his truck. I ran outside and gave him a hug and said bye to DD before he left for work. I got to say a final bye the day I am leaving.

Woke up later at 10a. Jennifer had left over pot pie and I had cereal. We finished packing, then left and dropped off the rental car. Mom picked us up and met Nana and Bonnie at Souplantation for lunch. We had our final hang out.

We said our goodbyes and Mom took Jennifer and I to the airport.

The flight was unmemorable which is what I want these days.

For the 1st time, going home was a real relaxing vacation for me. Now I am back home to compose, clean and build my new computer. More on my new computer later.

What a great vacation.

Posted by Eric at 10:40 PM

Monday, July 7, 2008

Through LA

Jennifer and I ate sushi at Fusion Sushi. We each had the lunch special with included a piece of salmon, tuna, yellow tail, and albacore and a special roll. The special rolls were Hawaiian roll (quite good) and the red dragon roll. We also got a special Philadelphia roll (had salmon on top) which was also very good.

I wanted to show Jenifer different parts of LA. So we drove up the coast on PCH (Pacific Coast Highway) then made a right on Olympic and drove though Beverly Hills, went down Rodeo Drive and went on the Sunset Strip though Hollywood.

We then went to pick up Mom and DD met us at Claim Jumper for dinner. Then back to DD's to hang out. Took Mom back home.

DD and I watched Dirty Jobs, a show on the discovery channel, and we were really laughing at the hosts comments. Jenifer enjoyed watching DD and I laughing together. What a great way to end the evening with DD. After the show , we said our goodbyes since DD is getting up early to go to work tomorrow.

Thanks DD for setting up your home for me and later Jennifer. It felt like home for awhile.

Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM

Sunday, July 6, 2008

My Best Friend's Wedding

Jennifer and I started our drive to San Diego for my friend Kimberly's wedding. I took Jennifer to beach town of La Jolla. We luckily found a parking spot. We then walked to an area of the beach were seals hang out. They just sit there and veg while people on the cliff and on the curved cement pier watch the seals. My friend David took me there years ago. It is still cool. Jennifer also enjoyed watching and talking pictures of the big California waves.

I then took her to Old Town San Diego and picked a place to eat Mexican. It unfortunately was crappy Mexican. The food was fine but not for the price they were charging.

Then to the wedding. The wedding took place at a Navy Base next to the ocean. It was nice hearing the waves during the wedding and reception. The wedding was really nice. Kimberly had me read something from a book or poem that paralleled dancing with life. When I started reading it Kimberly started crying. I received many complements on how well I read.

The reception was also outside. It began with the wedding party coming in and having the 1st dance. The next song was "Billy Jean" which it perfect for west coast swing (which is why Kimberly picked it) and asked Jennifer to dance. We then had nice hors d'oeuvres with wine followed by a buffet dinner. The food was very good. Then a toast of the best man and then bridesmaid. Then open dancing. I did eventually get a dance with Kimberly.

It was a very nice wedding and hope they will stay in love and be happy.

Posted by Eric at 10:44 PM

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Food, Family and Friends

DD, Mom, Jennifer and I met my friend Andrew and his girlfriend Karen for lunch at BJ's pizza. We talked about everything. We were there for almost 3 hours. It was a lot of fun hanging out with him. We said bye to Andrew and Karen and met AD and JK at Boarders.

Jennifer and I left Boarders and I took her to Naples to walked around and look at the uniques houses. We then had sushi at Sushi and Naples. I then drove her to my elementary school and junior high school. Since we were in the area, I dropped by Bonnie and Nana's so they could see Jennifer. We hung out their for an hour and talked. Jennifer and I then left to meet AD, JK, Mom and DD at Claim Jumper for deserts. Yummy deserts which are quite large. Then back to DD's for sleep.

Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM

Friday, July 4, 2008

Happy Fireworks Day

JK went to see her parents, so AD and I took Mom and DD out to lunch at Marie Calendars. AD then went with Mom to Nana and Bonnie's to show them some of his stuff. DD and I went on a quest for ice cream. It started with DD wanting ice cream from Tasty Freeze but they were closed. We then drove around Signal Hill to check out the view. Then towards the ocean and turned back when we realized it will be packed with people wanting to see the fireworks from the Queen Mary.

We then decided on a milk shake from Carl's Jr. I do not have them in the Texas. They are now made with real scooped ice cream with whipped cream on top. It was really good. We drank them while sitting at a park on Stearns. It was the park AD, DD and I would go to a lot when we were little.

DD and I then went to get Jennifer at the LA Airport and then back to DD's. AD, JK and Mom were there and had already got pizzas, chips, soda and an chocolate cream pie. We talked for awhile then saw the movie, The Game.


Click here to create your own fireworks show.

Posted by Eric at 10:36 PM

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Old Home Movies

DD, JK, AD, Mom and I had lunch at one of our favorite places to eat, Souplantation. Then back to DD's. DD and I were transferring old super 8 home movies of when I was little to DVD. AD was showing mom some of his resent music has created. Then back to Hof's for dinner and desert. (AD and JK seem to want to always go there. It is also one of the few places that stays open late.)

Posted by Eric at 10:00 PM

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Books and Food

For lunch, DD, AD, JK, Mom and I went to an organic Chinese restaurant. It was pretty good. We then went to Barnes and Noble. AD and JK do not have one back home in Kansas so when the come out here, they tend to go the book stores a lot. Then to Hof's Hut for dinner and deserts. Then back to DD and hung out.

Posted by Eric at 10:56 PM

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Hanging Out with a Good Friend

Kimberly lives in San Diego and is getting married on Sunday. I met her 12 years ago. We dated for 2 years, stopped dating and then became best friends. She happened to be in town today and called to see if I wanted to do lunch. I said sure. We went to Frescos and I got a margarita pizza which was pretty good. We had a nice conversation. She has to go to a couple of stores for wedding stuff so I accompanied her and continued our conversations. Then back to DD and hung out with him until AD and JK arrived. Mom also came over and we went to Hof's for dinner. Then back to DD's to hang out for a bit before bed.

To Jennifer up in Canada right now, HAPPY CANADA DAY!

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM

Monday, June 30, 2008

Hanging Out with Sushi and Friends

Since this is my vacation, I am doing a lot of hanging out. So today I hung out with DD. For dinner, DD and I went with my friend Dave. I met Dave in university when I was an undergrad and I have known him for 16 years. We went to a sushi restaurant. Very good sushi. Especially the special rolls like the Philadelphia roll (their version had salmon on it), and the Hawaiian roll. Their salmon sushi was quite good. It was great hanging out with Dave.

Posted by Eric at 8:11 PM

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Nana and Bonnie

DD and I went to Pancake House for Breakfast-Lunch. We then went to Nana and Bonnie's. I gave Nana a present from Spain. It is an owl (she likes owls), a couple inches tall in mosaic (in the style of Gaudi, an early 20th century architect. When she open the box, her eyes poped open and she had a big smile. She really liked it. I gave Bonnie 2 very nice 81/2 x 11 pictures that I took in Spain.

They then looked through my large amount of Spain pictures. They enjoyed looking at them. We then had take out Chinese and then talked for the rest of the evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:15 PM

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Sucky to OK

Today was bad from the beginning. DD and I was going to transfer are old super 8 film onto my new DVD video camera. The old film are movies of my childhood. Well before we even started recording we tested it out. Well some how it did not go to the intake real. It instead got stuck in inside the projector. We did not have the correct socket to open it so we were going to take it in to a place DD had had it fixed before. When we got there, they had a sign that they closed early. Arg.

Being hungry, we went to subway. Since we were close to Mom's house, I decided we should visit her and eat our sandwich. It was kind of warm in the house so we brought out chairs and ate in the garage. It was nice eating outside. I would not even think of doing this in Houston with that fracken humidity. Staying inside is always much cooler there.

DD went to Lowe's to find the correct socket. I stayed and hung out with mom and had a good conversation about life and stuff. Then to Mom and I went to DD's and then had dinner at Polly's.

Sucky day in the beginning turned out ok in the end.

Posted by Eric at 10:42 PM

Friday, June 27, 2008

Being the Only Child

Today Mom came over and gave her the chocolate I got from Spain. She really liked it. Said that the chocolate is very good. I then showed Mom and DD my resent pictures and the pictures from my trip to Spain. DD really liked the pictures of the massive cathedral in Granada. It was fun being the only child for a few days. AD and JK comes in on Tuesday.

Posted by Eric at 10:28 PM

Thursday, June 26, 2008

A Heck of a Morning turned into a Peach of a Day

This morning started out great. I woke up this morning next to my beautiful girlfriend, gave her a good morning kiss and had cereal. Left the apartment, no traffic to the airport and got an Arby's sandwich on the way. We sat and ate our sandwich together. Got a kiss goodbye. She went to her side of the terminal and l went to my US Airways terminal. Now I sit and wait. 2:30p came and I found out that the plane had not left San Antonio because of the Houston weather. Then at 3:30p, they said it was canceled and we had to go out of security to the ticket counter where lots of people were also there for 2 other flights that were canceled. IT WAS 7:30P WHEN I FINALLY GOT TO THE FRONT OF THE LINE. THAT IS 4 HOURS! I was tired, hungry and can not believe being in the computer age it took that long. I was lucky. I have 2 other airports near Long Beach. So they switched me to Continental to fly non-stop to LAX.

Took the train to the Continental terminal and grabbed a slice of pizza. There were 2 flights going to LAX. One was at 8p delayed to 9 something and my flight with was supposed to leave at 9p and delayed to 10:30p. The 8p flight had a gate number on the departure screen and it match the gate. My flight did not have a gate number and on my ticket it was gate 43a but at that gate said it was going to Columbus, OH.

So I walked to the 8p flight gate to ask if they knew what gate my flight is located. He looked at me and said, "We have one seat left. You want to go on this flight?" I of course enthusiastically said ya. We ripped off the boarding pass and said, "Go find the empty seat." Walked onto the plane and asked the flight attendant were the last seat is. He took me to the 1st row of the 2nd section of the plane. The cool part was it was an exit row so I had lots of leg room. I sat next to Joe. A cool guy who has been flying for 30 years because of his job. He would say the funniest comments. When we were taxiing for 7 minutes he said, "Are were driving to LA.?" I laughed so hard. I thought my day was bad. He had been flying since 7a. He also said another great comment. It was a comment about the say we were having. He said, "It has been a richly rewarding emotional experience." I again laughed so hard I almost fell out of my seat.

It is a pretty good airline. Besides the free beverage, we got food. Not pretzels like on other airlines, but real food. We got a small beef and cheese burger shaped sandwich, a small salad with Caesar dressing on the side and a small Hershey bar.

I finally landed in LAX at 11:30p and DD picked me up and drove me to his house. The day is finally over. Flying sucks.

Posted by Eric at 11:44 PM

Monday, June 9, 2008

Goodbye Barcelona

We got up at 7:30p and had breakfast at the hotel. We then went on the metro to sant station.
Then a train to the airport.

Then through security and showing the passport a billion times. (Did not have to go through this going to Spain. Only the US is crappen paranoid and overdoing it.)

Then the 8 hour flight.

Back to Houston to Jennifer's place and crashed asleep.

Posted by Eric at 10:12 PM

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Last Day in Spain

Ate breakfast at hotel. Walked around La Rambla a little.

Lunch at an Indian restaurant. It was the menu of the day. It was pretty good. Lots of variety.

We then walked to Barceloneta and the beach. Very crowded like Huntington Beach.

Then back to the hotel around 5p for siesta.

Ate at a tapas bar that Jennifer wanted to go to. She wanted to try the bread topped with tomato. We also had mushrooms, cured ham and haves braves (potatoes). Also had a mug of summer wine as they call it in Barcelona. In Granada it is wine with lemon.

We went back to the hotel to pack.

I wanted a small thing to eat so we went out around 11p (Yup. restaurants and other non bar places stay open until midnight in Spain). We got some Gelato. Then to bed.

Posted by Eric at 10:02 PM

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Going Gothic

We ate free breakfast in the hotel. Jennifer wanted to go to the open market. It was amazing. Lots of fresh food of all kinds from fish, fruit, meats and candy. Jennifer has a fruit drink which she really liked. We then walked La Rambla, Gothic Quarter and La Ribera.

We say the Arc de Triomf. A very large arch with a nice walkway towards it.

We went to a cafe and each had a great sandwich. Inside the cafe, it had musical instruments on the wall.

We did more walking around.

For dinner we ate at a really bad restaurant. Jennifer's penne seemed to have no taste to is. Blah.

Then back to the hotel for sleep.

Posted by Eric at 10:00 PM

Friday, June 6, 2008

Welcome to the Hotel California

We got up early at 6:30a to catch a flight back to Barcelona and checked into the Hotel California (Yup. You read it right.) It is located in the Gothic Quarter.

We walked away from the touristy area of La Rambla and found an Indian Restaurant. We had the menu of the day. It was ok Indian. Then back to hotel for a siesta.

We had dinner at an Italian restaurant. I had spaghetti with was great. Thicker noodles and great sauce. She had a ham pizza which she said was also good.

Them walked back to the hotel and slept.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Into the Arabian World

Ate falafel in a pita for lunch at the same place we went yesterday. The guy behind the counter knew us from yesterday and said "Dos falafel y samosas ?" We said just the falafel. Still very good.

Adventure to find the post office.

Then to a tapas bar. We got vino con lemon and had a free tapa. It was some kind of deep fried. Jennifer called it deep fried terror fish. It was good though.
Another vino con lemon and got a free fried shrimp tapa.

Since there was open table to sit at, a Spanish couple invited us to sit with them. They new no English and I new only a little Spanish. We did communicate a little. I got their names, Miguel and Margarita. I told them I am a music professor in Texas and Jennifer is a science student. I got that they were visiting Granada and her sister lives in Barcelona.

Ran into a massive cathedral on the way back to the hotel.

Had a 1/2 hour siesta and then went to the same place we had falafel and each got a huge samosa.

When to a different Arabian tea house. I had chi tea and Jennifer had green tea. These tea houses are elaborately decorated and quite peaceful.

Then to a different tapas bar. We both had a wine with lemon. Tapa was medium sandwich and fries. Pretty good.

We the went to another Arabian tea house called the Kasbah. We shared an Indian Chi tea and crapes.

Then back to the hotel to pack for tomorrow we go back to Barcelona.

Posted by Eric at 10:24 PM

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Now This is a Castle

For lunch we went to a hole in the wall place called Schawarma Pakiatani and had a falafel in a pita custom made in front of us. We also got a samosa. It was huge so we saved it for later. The pita was really good. We walked to the Alhambra Castle. It is huge. Lots of rooms with wall beautifully decorated. Large pretty gardens and a great view of Ganada.

For dinner we went to 3 tapas bars. The 1st we had a Sangria which sucked but the free tapa was good. It was a falafel. The 2nd tapas bar I had a Sangria which was better and she had a Spanish beer on tap. We got a pretty good tapa. The 3rd tapas bar she had a Spanish beer on tap and I had vino con limon (wine with lemon) which was quite good. The tapa was ok.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Granada- The World of Free Tapas

Today we got up very early to catch a plane to Granada. Not a bad flight since it was only an hour. Got to Granada and since our hotel was not ready, we walked up an area that looks like it came right out of a movie. (I think of James bond movies.) Narrow streets between tall buildings. When we walked to the top of a hill we saw a fantastic view of Granada and the castle La Alhambra (which we are going to see tomorrow). We got into our hotel a noon. Went to a local cafe for lunch. Then back to our hotel for a siesta (sleep).

Then out to Elvira street (just a block from our hotel) with more cobbled like streets and lots of shops with Arabian stuff. We when to an Arabian tea house. Jennifer had a peppermint tea and I had a black tea with orange and vanilla. The atmosphere was really nice and so was the tea. We then went to Sultan, Arabian restaurant. I had a Moroccan pie with chicken which was quite good. Jennifer had lamb which she said was also good. Then went for tapas at La Belle y La Bestia. Went to a tapas bar and I ordered in Spanish a sangria and Jennifer a Spanish beer. My sangria was quite good. In Granada, when you order a drink you get a free tapa. Not a little tapa but a big one. The free ones are not aways as elaborate as the paid ones but hey, free food. Our free tapa included 2 mini sandwiches, a pasta salad and fries. It was pretty cool.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM

Monday, June 2, 2008

To the Castle

Breakfast at the cafe, Rico de Manso. We had hot chocolate and churro. The hot chocolate was really thick and you dip the churro into the hot chocolate. Then went food shopping so for lunch we could make a sandwich. We then went up a Funicular to the Sky Way to go up hill and visit a castle. It is Castell de Montjuic. What a nice castle and what an amazing view. For dinner we went to a really good Chinese place.

Posted by Eric at 10:10 PM

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Gingerbread House

Went to see the park Guell which has a lot of Gaudi's architecture. The park has a lot of columns that look like trees and buildings that are mosaic covered. One of the buildings looked like a gingerbread house. The park was so cool. Since it is on a mountain I saw a panoramic view of Barcelona. I was on top of the world. For lunch we had some Paella. The traditional Catalan dish with rice and seafood. It was quite good. We walked around and saw more of Guidi's cool and curvy architecture. For dinner we has some tapas at Rico de Manso, a place near our hotel and a sangria (wine and fruit). They were all good.

Posted by Eric at 10:08 PM

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Live from Barcelona

Landed in Barcelona 8 hours later. Took the train to Sant Station. Then took the metro green line (L3) to Poble Sec. Got off and walked to my hotel, Hotel Evenia. Checked in and hung out in the room for about 10 minutes when Jennifer came in. It was nice to me my pretty girlfriend. She was already in Spain for a week long science conference. Still tired we walked down to the beach. I put my hand in the water. This makes it the 4th body of water I have put my hand in. They are the Pacific, Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and now the Mediterranean Sea. I saw the lighthouse in which a clock was added. Went to a hole in the wall sandwich place and each got a sandwich custom made. It was really good. We then walked to the Gothic Quarter and a large church the Santa Maria Del Mar with very tall ceilings. It was amazing.

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM

Friday, May 30, 2008

Going to Barcelona

During the flight to Philadelphia, the woman on the flight sitting next to me, Jamie, was from Nova Scotia and now lives in Philadelphia. We talked about Nova Scotia, Germany (were the company she works for is based), Iceland is green and Greenland is ice. I showed her some card magic and then taught her Kings Corner. She showed me a new solitary game. I arrived in Philadelphia at 3:50p. Ate Japanese Teriyaki Chicken in the airport which was pretty good. I sat with a guy Mike from Philadelphia who is going to Berlin to study German.

So in Philadelphia we had a gate changed from A22 to A24. Then a delay from leaving at 6:20p to 7:45p. Then another delay to leaving at 9p. The delay was because of mechanical problems. One good thing is that we got a $10 food voucher so free food. I ate with Sara and Teddy who are both going to Granada to study Spanish for 6 weeks. Then at 9p I took the 8 hour flight to Barcelona.

Next stop: Barcelona, Spain

Posted by Eric at 11:54 AM

Waiting to go to Barcelona

Sitting in the airport waiting to get on the plane. By the time I arrive in Barcelona it will be Saturday. There goes a day on the plane. Literally.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 AM

Saturday, April 19, 2008

What a Great Feeling

Woke up and had free breakfast at the hotel and walked to the college for the Fresno New Music Festival. It began with a master class with professor emeritus Jack Fortner. He talked about his music and his compositional approach to the 4 pieces he presented. The pieces were written very well it was great to hear him and his music. My parents had come up form So Cal to see me and hear my piece. I met up with them and attended the University High School Orchestra. For a high school orchestra playing mew music they did an incredible job. There were some nice pieces on the concert. There was a reception after the concert. Free Food. Talked to Jack Fortner about music and composer and talked to university High School Orchestra Director Johnathan Malcolm about a possible performance of my music.

The next concert was the Fresno State Percussion Ensemble. Good percussion ensemble. The 60 x 60 concert was next. Simply put, it is an electroacoustic concert that contains 60 compositions form 60 composers and each piece being 60 seconds or less. The pieces are played with a visual algorithm which is shaped by piece in real time and a analog clock showing the passage of time. There were some great moments during the concerts.

The music ensemble Conundrum came in after the concert to rehearse. I met them and they told me they really loved my piece. My piece was the 1st one they chose for this concert. I got to listen to the rehearsal of my piece and it was amazing. I heard things in my piece that I had not heard before. The ebb and flow of the melody between the flute and clarinet sounded like a wave flowing between them. The pianist had such a smooth touch and the soprano had so much energy. It was a fantastic experience. I then went to the lobby for a reception for the composers. (More free food.) More great conversations with fellow composers and also spending some time with my supported parents. All the composers were really cool people. We are all in the same struggle to get our music heard. Then the Conundrum concert. They are such a great group. There were some really nice pieces on the concert. Heard mine again and it felt like I was taken somewhere else. It was such a great performance of it. After the concert I got a picture with them. There are such a nice group of people and quite silly. I received some nice compliments on my piece which was really validating. Ken Froelich, the music composition professor at Fresno State, did a great job with setting up the New Music Festival. He is also a good composer and great to talk to. We all then went to BJ's for our after concert food consumption and concert high recovery. Mom and DD joined the table of composer and musicans and great conversations. I had such a fantastic time and made some great contacts.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM

Friday, April 18, 2008

Off to Fresno

Thunderstorms hit around 4a so it made it harder to stay asleep. Got up at 5:30p and made apple and cinnamon oatmeal. Then l said bye to Jennifer and left for the airport. I slept the whole way to Phoenix. From Phoenix to Fresno I sat next to Fred. Just met him. He lives in Phoenix and is going to Fresno for a guys weekend with his old college friends. He used to live in LA so we talked about So Cal, Canadians (since his gig takes him there) and about relationships. It was fun talking to him and made the flight go faster. I gave him my card since he does business in Houston.

Got picked up by the hotel shuttle and checked in. Then food. There was a Marie Calenders a walk away and got the special. It was fish and chips with 2 shrimp, cole slaw and a big piece of corn bread plus a pie. I got a chocolate satin pie. It was soooooo good. I then walked around the music department at Fresno State University. I continued to walk around the rest of the campus. I crashed a science department reception for a dean who is being promoted to director of graduate studies. I only grabbed a 7up. None of the food interested me. Besides I was still full of Marie Calenders. Continued to walk around and saw a flyer that said the salsa dance club was having a dance with a live band at 6:30p. I said to myself I am so there. So I walked back to the hotel to change into my long sleeve shirt to look impressive. I arrived at 7p and they were still doing the dance lesson for beginners. Then the club members performed which was fine. The problem was that they wanted to change outfits for each dance. Why? It is not a big deal. Especially if we had to wait for them to change while the student MC is trying to fill time by asking for questions from the audience. This crap lasted for about 45 min. Do people have no ability to plan a program? Then finally the live band began and we got to dance. They were a great sounding group with about 8 members. I stayed until midnight dancing salsa, merengue and bachata with lots of different girls. One of the girls was Erin who was quite cute. She dance with me many times during the evening. She also taught me the bactata which is a slower dance than salsa. It reminds me of the night club 2 step. I got back and practiced all the old moves I used to know. It was such a fun evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:16 PM

Saturday, March 22, 2008

The Big Thicket

Since I did not go anywhere special during spring break which was this past week I decided to go somewhere kind of special this weekend. So today Jennifer and I went to The Big Thicket.

(Other Big Thicket Sites here and here.)

We parked at the visitor's center and we ate a sandwich that Jennifer had made on a table outside. We then walked inside the center and talked to a park ranger who was very helpful. He told up some history of the place and directed us to areas of the thicket that would interest us. Jennifer wanted to see the carnivorous plants.

We 1st walked the Kirby Nature Trail in the Turkey Creek Unit of the Big Thicket. It was a great walk with a variety talk trees and plants.


Jennifer being a biologist was taking pictures of all kinds of things like mushrooms, beetles and snakes.

We then went on the Sundew trail in the the Hickory Creek Savannah Unit. This is were we saw the carnivorous Yellow pitcher plant.

Here is one taken by Jennifer.

Not just one but a lot of them.

It was a nice and refreshing day.

Posted by Eric at 8:22 PM

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Back Home to Relax

I went back home to my apartment. Unpacked and was basically being lazy and recovering from the trip.

Posted by Eric at 10:14 PM

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Hung Out With Quartz

Today I hung around the Jennifer's apartment being lazy and recovering from the trip. She got back from her hometown yesterday also.

Posted by Eric at 10:06 PM

Friday, December 28, 2007

Flying from the Home of My Past to the Home of My Present

I had lunch at Souplantation with Nana, Bonnie, DD, AD, JK and Mom.

Then to the airport.

On the way to Phoenix, I had a woman seated next to me that did not like to fly. She said she is in Navy so of course she does not like to fly. (Insert Village People Song here). To get her mind off of flying I 1st showed her some magic card tricks which she really liked. We then played war a couple of times. I won very quickly the 1st time. Then played crazy 8s.

In Phoenix, my flight was delayed because (wait for it) of a broken toilet. What? When we finally got on the plane I noticed that there were 2 bathrooms in the back of the plane. They could have closed off one of them and we could have used the other. Then I thought, I bet it was the toilet in the front of the plane reserved for first class passengers so they would not have to go though the evil and disgusting coach class passengers. I never found out. Probably good that I did not because I probably would have been pissed if that was the real reason.

So while I was waiting to get on the place and I ended up talking about music to the ticket girl. We were talking about the composers we liked like Arvo Part. She then gave me a list of composers I had not heard of and should listen to and I wrote down a list for her.

Then I finally made it to Jennifer's a little after midnight. What a day.

Posted by Eric at 10:04 PM

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Meeting Up With My Old Friends

I got to meet up with my friend Karla for lunch. We went to Chili's. She is such a bright and positive person. It was great having lunch with her.

I then met up with Dave at the Belmont Brewing Company at 3p. Saw the sun set behind Catalina. What a sight. Then he took me to his house that he newly remodeled. Then to DD's to show him some pictures and music of mine.

Dave and I then went with DD, AD, JK, Mom to BJ's for some great pizza.

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

My Old Piano

We hung around the house and ate Christmas leftovers. JK went to her parents house with AD. I went to Mom's (my old house) to see how the bedrooms look with no carpet. Mom had ripped out the old carpets this past year to expose the hard wood floors underneath. The rooms look nice with hard wood. I then went through my old children's books and records that I have been keeping for some reason. I got rid of all of the books. I have the few I wanted back at my place that I took when I first moved to Northern Cal. I got rid of all the records except one "The Song of the South." I kept it since Disney pretty much no longer acknowledges that the movie ever existed.

I then played my old piano. I miss my old piano. It still sounds nice a warm and it is still one of the best pianos I have ever played.

Then to the Comedy and Magic Club with DD, AD, JK and Mom. It was fun. Most of the comedians were good. The headliner was ok. He somehow lost his place or flow during the middle of his routine. It was fun going out though.

Posted by Eric at 10:58 PM

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day

AD, JK, DD and I went to Marcine (my Dad's sister) and her husband Mike's house for the Christmas dinner party. Now I mean a party. Mike's brothers come along with their wives and kids. Dinner is always buffet style. We then did the white elephant present game. It was a fun evening.

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Monday, December 24, 2007

Wesołych Świąt

This year we had Christmas dinner at DD's. This is only the second time we have had it there. We usually had it at Nana's. For years DD always wanted to have it at his place but is place was always to small. Last year he got a house and had the room to host the Christmas dinner. This year we also had it at DD's. We had AD, JK, DD, Mom, Nana, Bonnie, Carol (JK's Mom) and I for dinner.

The Christmas dinner begins with the Opłatek (a Christmas Wafer) which is pronounced "Oh-pwah-tek." The sacred white wafer, a semi-transparent wafer of unleavened dough stamped with scenes of the nativity, are shared with each person present. During the exchange, good wishes are expressed. Then we start eating. A Polish dish I always look forward to at Christmas is the Gołabki (Cabbage Roll-Ups) which is pronounced "goh-wab-kee." This Christmas there were 2 different kinds, one with meat and the other with buckwheat. I always like to eat the meat one. A Gołabki recipe.

For desert was booze cake and pumpkin pie. They are both really good but my favorite has always been the booze cake.

During December Mom picks names out of a hat pretending to be one of the family. For example, she says that she is Adam, she picks a name and the name she picks Adam had to get a that person a present. This year I had Bonnie. I got her a CD of Hildegard von Bingen music sung by the Anonymous 4. She really liked the present. Jk had me and got me a CD of really cool film trailer music.

After that, I gave out my presents. A few months ago, my girlfriend Jennifer and I had gone to a book sale at Rice University. We could fill a box up for only 5 bucks. So we filled it up and I got books that my family might like. So today I gave them out. I got Nana a bathroom crossword book, Bonnie a book about Language, AD a book on different configurations of theaters around the world, DD a book on painting marine stuff like boats also writings of Thomas Jefferson and Mom a book of memoirs of Star Trek.

As always, a great Christmas with the family.


More about the Opłatek
More about the Polish Christmas Eve Dinner

Wesołych Świąt (Merry Christmas)!


Posted by Eric at 10:16 PM

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Seeing Their Kids Grown Up

I went to Souplantation with AD, JK, DD and Mom. I do not have a place like this in Galveston-Houston. Great salads, pasta and pastries. Then we all hung out at DD's.

I then went to my friends Chrissy and Dennis and their 3 kids Kathrine, Liz and Diana for dinner. We had pizza. I had not seen the kids in at least 4 years and it was strange see them older. The oldest is now in 7th grade. They showed me a DVD of the play that Katherine and Liz were in. I then showed them some of my DVD of my Music Department's Winter Concert. I then showed them some of my pictures.

I was fun seeing the kids again.

Posted by Eric at 10:12 PM

Friday, December 21, 2007

Lunch with an Old Friend

I slept in on my 1st day of vacation. Kimberly and her guy came by for lunch. We went to Friscos. It was a fun atmosphere and the food was good. Then back to DD's and played her some new piece of mine and showed some of my new pictures. Then Mom came over and played her and DD my new pieces and showed my new pictures. Then dinner at Polly's.
A nice 1st day.

Posted by Eric at 10:44 PM

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Back Home to SoCal

Jennifer and I both had late flights so unlike other times when we have traveled, we got to sleep in this time. She did her packing. We had lunch at Freebirds and then off to the airport. We said our good byes and want to our respective airplanes which will take us each to our hometowns. Check in and security was not bad. I and 10 others were the last zone to get on the plane and the plane had no more room in the overhead compartments because stupid people had such big ass carry on luggage. They would take up half the compartment so only 2 per compartment instead of 4. That sucked. So I had to check my bag it and I would not see it until I hot to Long Beach. I said to myself they better not crappen lose it. I know my bag would have fit in the overhead. I have taken this flight before. This is why I use the smaller bag so I would not have to have checked bags.

The flight to Phoenix was sort of long but nothing major. Got off the plane. Looked at the screen for my next gate. It was B20. On my ticket it was B6. This is not a good sign. So I walked all the way to B20. A few minutes later they announced that the flight to Long Beach will be at gate B5. Oh brilliant. So I walk all the way to be B5. Then I find out it is delayed for an hour. Oh fun. Does anyone remember when flying use to be fun?

I do finally get to Long Beach and yay my bag arrived also.
DD took me out to Hof's Hut since I never had dinner.

Finally back Home to SoCal.

Posted by Eric at 11:22 PM

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Preparing for the Leap Home

I finished copying my photos and music on to CD's and my stick. Then finished packing my stuff. Then went to Jennifer's to be ready to take us up to the airport tomorrow.

Posted by Eric at 10:06 PM

Monday, August 20, 2007

Sleeping In

We both slept in until almost 11a. Showered and ate some muffins. I took her to work and I went to get my tire fixed. They were able to save the tire and patched it up. Then to my home and relaxed for the rest of the day.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Fricken Calgary

Jennifer had always told me how much she hates flying through Calgary. Every time she has something goes wrong. Which is why she calls it Fricken Calgary. We are ready to board the plan from Saskatoon to Calgary when they announce that they found some wires behind a panel had been cut or fused and the replacement parts are coming on a plane from Calgary to Saskatoon. By the time that happens we will have missed our connecting flight. So we had to rebook to a later flight. That meant sitting in the Calgary airport for 5 hours waiting for the flight from Calgary to Houston. Then we finally made it to Houston at 11:30p, took a shuttle to my car in a parking lot, paid and as we were about to turn into the street, we notice that I have a flat tire on the drivers side back tire. Oh fantastic. I called AAA and a AAA pick up truck came in 10 minutes. Changed it in a couple of minutes and we were on our way to Jennifer's apartment. Got there and fell asleep instantly.

Posted by Eric at 10:04 PM

Saturday, August 18, 2007

80th Birthday

It was her Mom's Mom's 80th birthday party. Her Mom has 6 sisters and they were all there with their husbands and kids. They hired a photographer to take family pictures in the backyard. Then there was a DVD slide show of each sister and their family for about 2 minutes each. Then lunch. Roast beef, sausage, potato salad and pasta salad. All were very good. Then ice cream cake. 3 cousins (including Jennifer) who recently had a birthday and grandma blew out the candles on 2 ice cream cakes. It was fun visiting all of her Mom's side of the family. Then back home and took my final walk around Langham with thin air with her sister and 2 cousins. Then to sleep for tomorrow we go back home to humid Houston.

Posted by Eric at 10:24 PM

Friday, August 17, 2007

Hanging Out

Today Jennifer and I relaxed and hung out at home reading our books, watching tv and reading stuff online during the afternoon. Late afternoon, Jennifer's sister and cousins came over to say the night for their grandma's 80's birthday party on Saturday. For dinner, we all went (including all of her mom's sister's families) to a restaurant for her cousin's B-Day. The restaurant was ok. It was fun talking to a couple of her cousins she is close to. Then back home with a packed house full of cousins, aunts and uncles sleeping over.

Posted by Eric at 11:46 PM

Thursday, August 16, 2007


Today Jennifer, both her parents and I went to the mall to clothes shop. Actually it was Jennifer, her Mom and I. Her Dad went to another part of the city do to something. We were out shopping all day. Jennifer got some shirts and uns. I got a pair of nice dress pants, a light sweater and a nice fleece. Then home for dinner. It was cut up roast beef, celery and other vegetables mixed with miracle whip and put on a hamburger bun. Then wrapped up in a paper towel and nuked for 30 seconds. It was quite good. Then Jennifer and I walked around her town to here small one street downtown. It was nice weather for walking unlike Houston humid hell. It was nice walking around her town. She lives in a nice, quiet town.

Posted by Eric at 10:04 PM

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Out With The Boys

Breakfast this morning was waffles and lunch was perogies. I like perogies. Hung around the house most of the day and relaxed. For dinner we ate the Freehouse (ya I know stupid names since food there is not free. It is actually not cheap food either.) Jennifer and I meet her friends there. There were 10 of us. We then went to Winstons, a really nice looking and comfortable bar. I had a couple of pints of alcoholic apple cider which was quite good. It was fun hanging out with her friends.

Posted by Eric at 10:24 PM

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The U of S

This morning I made myself an omelet which was really good. Jennifer then took me to the University of Saskatchewan to show me here she went to school as an undergrad. A nice looking campus.



She also wanted to find the professor that she worked as a TA with. She found him and were catching up. Jennifer and I then went with her parents to see her Dad's parents at their condo. They made dinner. We had borscht which was good. Then back home and Jennifer and I went to her friend Danielle's parent's house to hang out.

Posted by Eric at 10:26 PM

Monday, August 13, 2007

To The City

Today Jennifer and I went to "The City" as they call it here, which is Saskatoon, to meet her friend Joe. We walked around the city and got some ice cream from a popular ice cream place. I got 2 scopes: a Death by Chocolate scope and a Perseid Meteor Shower scope. It was good. I say, I thought this sign was amusing.

We then walked over Victoria Bridge.

We walked back on the Broadway Bridge.

While on it we could see the University Bridge.

This city has 7 bridges that goes over the South Saskatchewan River. It is a pretty wide river. Then went back to Joe's new house and hung out. We then went to her friend Danielle's apartment to hang out for a little bit. Then back home for dinner which was turkey squares with gravy and chili. It was quite good.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Out On the Farm

Breakfast was eggs, sausage and toast. Lunch was chicken and dumplings. Both meals were very good. Then Jennifer, her dad and I went out to their farms.

One was her Dad's parents farm which Jennifer's parents took over and farmed for 20 years, the other someone is renting and her parents get 40 percent of the profits. Their farm has wheat. Jennifer picked one and had me taste it. Pretty good. What great open spaces with little hills scattered about.

Her parents friends had come by for a surprise visit when they were passing though town. It was interesting listening to the conversations. Very prairie Canada like. For dinner we had turkey and dumplings which were quite good. Then Jennifer, her Mom and I went to out on the porch to watch the Perseid Meteor Shower. It was a little chilly and we each had blanket on to keep up warm. We saw some really nice meteors and a few were quite bright with long tails.

Posted by Eric at 11:40 PM

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Going Out of the Country

Really early this morning, Jennifer and I got up at 5:30a to get a 7:55a flight to her home town Langham which is in the province of Saskatchewan in Canada. We flew to Calgary

for our 1st stop and then to Saskatoon for the 2nd flight. Langham as only about 1500 people living in the town. There are no restaurants or any other big businesses because it is only 20 minutes away from Saskatoon. It is flat world just like Houston without the tall buildings. It is very similar to Kansas with large open spaces and lots of farm lands.

She had a younger sister and brother. Her brother is still living here and her sister is coming to town on Friday. Her parents made dinner and we had pork shops, potatoes, pickles and pickled cucumbers (that are not dill). For dessert was angel food cake. Dinner was delicious. Then her mom and I went out on the porch and watched the Perseid Meteor Shower. Saw a few nice ones. I did not stay out long since I had got up so early the night before. Night.

Posted by Eric at 10:02 PM

Friday, July 20, 2007

Off to Home

I left St Louis at 9:45a and landed in Houston at 11:15a. I then picked up Jennifer and headed down to Galveston for the weekend. It was her Island Retreat. I even made Quesadillas.

Posted by Eric at 10:06 PM

Thursday, July 19, 2007

A Musical Tour of the Past

AD and I had the buffet at the hotel and JK joined us during her lunch break from the conference. Then AD and I preceded to find some more places to see which turned out to be majorly for kids or was not open. We then went to the Scott Joplin House and took the tour through his house. It was fun. (Another Scott Joplin House Site.) Even though it was not his furniture (people did not know that he was going to be famous) it was filled with furniture of the 1900 like an icebox and period stove. I even got to play the player piano playing a Joplin piece played by Scott Joplin. (That is a lot of playing).
We then picked up JK at from the conference and ate at a Chinese Restaurant were I had really good orange chicken. We then went to TGI Fridays for dessert. AD is not big on Chinese so he only had a couple egg rolls at the Chinese place and had a dinner at TGI Fridays. Then back to the hotel and looked at each other's travel pictures. His pictures of Europe and my pictures of Toronto.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Brother Time

JK had her 1st day at the conference while AD and I went to see some amazing art work at the St. Louis Art Museum. There were a couple that I really liked. (pic) I also got to have some brother alone time which was really cool. We then met up with JK and went to the Old Spaghetti Factory.

Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Sushi and a Duel on a Cobble Stone Road

We all got up at 1p. Ya I know it is late but hey, I am on vacation. We went to Dalmar Street to ---- for good Italian. It is an active street with lots of restaurants and shops. Then at about 7:30p we went to 2nd street with a cobble stone road to the Drunken Fish for Sushi. I wanted to introduce JK and AD to sushi so I ordered Philadelphia rolls and eel roll. They both had a couple and like them. I also had a couple of white tuna and salmon nigiri sushi.

Then on the same street we went to The Big Bang Dueling Piano Bar. I actually got carded. I had a Long Island Ice Tea and JK had a Bicardi Silver wine cooler. It was fun.

Posted by Eric at 10:22 PM

Monday, July 16, 2007

Greeted by the Arch

We started on our way to St. Louis and made a quick drive though Independence. We made it into St Louis by 7p and were greeted by the Gateway Arch. We checked into Adam's Mark Hotel
which we stayed at for the rest of the trip. Our hotel is right next to the Gateway Arch

so we walked to it and all 3 of us touched it. For dinner we ordered room service.

Posted by Eric at 10:06 PM

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Fountains of Kansas City

Kansas City occupies 2 states, Kansas and Missouri. We went the City Market in Kansas City. A lot of fresh food.

Kansas City is called the fountain city and because of the large amount of fountains throughout the city. We followed a mapped tour of some of them. This led us to a fountain which had lots of kids in swim suits running though the fountain.

We then went into an enclosed mall in Crown Center to find a place to eat lunch. We found Fritzs Railroad Restaurant.

A place where you call in your order and small trains deliver the food high above the restaurant. When it gets to your table it drops the tray onto an elevator which lowers the tray down to your table. It was so cool. The food was also good.

We then walked on an enclosed overpass to Union Station. We went to the Science City where there were 3 stories of science stuff to see, touch and play with. We then went to the planetarium for 2 shows. The first was a planetarium show about the objects in the summer sky. The 2nd was a laser show accompanied by music of the 80's which being the product of the 80's made the show even better.

We then ate at McCoy's for dinner and off to a different hotel for some sleep.

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM

Saturday, July 14, 2007

To Kansas City

JK was going to a conference in St. Louis and Adam was taking along since he had not been that city before. Today I flew from Houston to Kansas City to pick me up on the way to St. Louis. We stayed in Kansas City for a night. It was raining a lot. We ate dinner at a bar and grill at the Sheridan Hotel near the Best Western were we were staying. It was nice to see them.

Posted by Eric at 10:04 PM

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Leaving Canada

Checked out of the guesthouse and her Toronto parents picked us up and we went to the Farmers Market. Lots of good and fresh food. They then took us to feed the ducks in the snow at a park. That was fun. Then hung out at their place until we had to leave to the airport on the Subway :)

Now I am back in Houston at Jennifer's relaxing after a long and fun trip. I did not want to go home. I wanted to stay in Toronto longer. I guess I will have to come back.

Posted by Eric at 11:06 PM

Friday, March 16, 2007

Niagara Falls

Today was the Niagara Falls Tour. We got picked up right from our guesthouse. Got a little tour of Toronto on our way out. Then stopped for an opportunity for a 20 minute copter or plane ride over the falls which cost more. The plane was $89 and the copter was $114. Way to much for just an aerial view. Surprisingly 90% of the tour did it so instead of us waiting for everyone to finish, the tour guide took us somewhere that was not part of the tour. He took us to a chocolate factory to have free chocolate tasting. They were good.

Then to a vineyard for wine tasting. The place where they keep the wine barrels was cool. The wine was not that good. To give them credit, they got awards for their ice wine which I did not try. ($4 just to taste the ice wine. Not worth it.)

Then took a look at the whirl pool. Then to the falls. The tour behind the falls was also part of the tour package. It was cool to be that close to the falls.
niagara.jpg niagara2.jpg

We then ended that and saw it from the front. Amazing looking especially with the snow and ice.

We then ate at the Table Rock Restaurant with a perfect view of the falls during lunch.

Then on the way back to Toronto, it began to snow. It was so neat. We then stopped by who Jennifer calls "Her Toronto Parents" to say hi. We had some very good wine and then gave us a bottle. Then onto the cool subway to meet Jennifer's friend Ryan and his girlfriend Kathrine. We went to eat at a Japanese restaurant which included Miso soup, salad, a sushi variety plate and ice cream. Then back to Ryan's place to share the bottle of wine.

It was a great day and a fun evening.

Posted by Eric at 11:04 PM

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Walking Around Toronto

We had walked though a large 3 story mall to get to the Royal Ontario Museum where we met her aunt, uncle their 2 daughters. We saw the Galleries of Africa: Egypt, Gallery of Greece, Ancient Peru Unearthed: Golden Treasures of a Lost Civilization and Heaven or Hell: Images of Chinese Buddhist and Daoist Deities and Immortals. It was amazing to see such old things including a real mummy.

We then left her aunt and uncle to eat at the Future Bakery. He had Pierogis which were really good and an oreo cheesecake which was also really good.

We then took a subway to Lake Ontario. It is so big it looks like it is an ocean not a lake. Parts of it where still frozen.

We then went to Queen West. A district with lots of shops and a variety of restaurants. We went to a really good Indian restaurant. What a great city.

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

To Canada

I left for Toronto with Jennifer this afternoon. This will be the 1st time I have been to Canada. Used my passport and got it stamped. Went through customs which was not a big deal as I thought and heard. We then took a bus to the subway. The public transportation in Tornoto is amazing. It was so easy to get around without a car unlike LA and Houston. The subways are fast and for me it was fun riding them. We arrived at the Spadina stop, walked outside and there was our hotel. How easy was that. We stated at the Global Guesthouse. A nice place. Homier than a hotel. A real funky room though. It was like a B and B without the breakfast.

We then met her friend Danny and went to the Kinston District and had Thai. We then went to a pub for a beer. I had an apple cider beer which was pretty good. It was nice to meet and visit with him. Then back to the guesthouse for my 1st night in Canada.

Posted by Eric at 11:58 PM

Thursday, December 28, 2006

She is Finally Home

I bought some Kolaches for Jennifer so she can have some kind of breakfast-lunch thing when I picked her up form the airport. Then took her home and we just relaxed.

Posted by Eric at 10:40 PM

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Friend Time

AD, JK and DD went with me to meet my friend Dave for lunch. I had not seen him for at least a year. It was a fun lunch and it was nice to see him. Mom then took me to Nana and Bonnie's to hang out with this for a bit before I flew home.

So I timed my flight from my hometown to my current home so I could land within an hour of when Jennifer's flight lands. Well, the fun of flying is that they are unpredictable especially when weather is involved. So Jennifer got stuck in Calgary and will not come in until tomorrow. So instead of seeing here when I get back, I get to say in her apartment for a night alone. It is a weird feeling staying in someone's apartment that has not been slept in for a week. So I made dinner and went to bed.

Posted by Eric at 10:38 PM

Tuesday, December 26, 2006


Since AD and JK live in Kansas in a big town but not a huge city, while there were here they wanted to do something big with lots of people. So they picked Disneyland. It is nothing new to us since we used to go there every year when we were growing up. So we went and it was crowded but it was fun.

Posted by Eric at 10:16 PM

Monday, December 25, 2006

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day

AD, JK, DD and I went to Marcine (my Dad's sister) and her husband Mike's house for the Christmas dinner party. Now I mean a party. Mike's brothers come along with their wives and kids. Dinner is always buffet style. We then to the white elephant present game. Like last year during the game there was a wrapping paper ball fight. It was a fun evening.

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 10:28 PM

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Wesołych Świąt

This year we had Christmas dinner at DD's. It is something he wanted to do for years and now he has the place to have it. We had AD, JK, DD, Mom, Nana, Bonnie, Carol (JK's Mom), Theresa (JK's sister) and I for dinner. Before we ate dinner, we shared a piece of Opłatek. We had all the food we normally have like ham, Gołabki, sweet potatoes, stuffing and rolls. Opened presents after dinner. Then dessert with a choice of booze cake, pumpkin pie and a Reese's peanut butter cup cake. Because I knew that my Dad would really want me to, I went with him to midnight mass and sang in the choir with him.

It was a nice Christmas evening.

For the traditions we do on Christmas Eve click on a previous entry.

Wesołych Świąt (Merry Christmas)!


Posted by Eric at 11:04 PM

Saturday, December 23, 2006


I went to Nana and Bonnie's and showed then my recent pictures and played my music.

Then DD, Mom and I ate at Frisco's Car Hop's Restaurant. It is an old style looking restaurant of the 5o's with surprisingly good food where the waitresses are on roller skates.

We then went to Naples to walk around and look at the Christmas lights and decorations on and in front of people's houses. It was a nice Christmas atmosphere evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:20 PM

Friday, December 22, 2006

Being an Only Child for a Day

When to the Elephant Bar with DD for lunch. It was not as good as when I went last year.

Later that evening, Mom and I hung out at DD's and showed them my recent pictures and played them what music pieces I have been working on. Since Adam was not there yet, if felt like I was an only child with all the attention of my parents. It was a nice evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:18 PM

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Home to SoCal

I took Jennifer and myself to the airport. She is going home to Canada to see her family and I am going home to SoCal to see my family. I got my tickets so I could leave and come back at the same time with her (ya I know I am such a good boyfriend).

Got to Long Beach and Mom picked me up and we had dinner at Souplantation. We had a great conversation and it was really nice spending some alone time with my Mom. We went back to the house and played the piano (the piano I have played on since I was 3). Then to my dad where I will be staying while I am here.

What a great evening.

Posted by Eric at 10:14 PM

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Old School and Home Again

AD and JK had left to the airport early this morning and it was about our time too. Mom came over so DD, Mom, Jennifer and I sat around talking for a bit. Mom and I then took Jennifer to my old school, Cal State University Long Beach, to show her the place. We walked around the music department that I had live at for 6 years. Even showed her the storm drains facing the hallways (yes they drain into the hallways). Then to the airport for the flight home. And the adventure was over. It was fun and I am glad Jennifer got to meet my family and to see California.

Posted by Eric at 11:14 PM

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Bloop in the Ocean

Jennifer, DD, JK, AD, Mom, Nana, Bonnie, Carol and I went to Claim Jumper. I got the rotisserie chicken that I usually ordered when I used to live here and Jennifer got the pot pie. Then just Jennifer and I drove down to Sunset Beach.

I also took a nice sexy picture of her and the ocean before sunset.

We then went to the Seal Beach Pier to watch the sun go bloop into the ocean. Since I left California 3 years ago, every time I went back to visit it was always cloudy, raining or had a marine layer so I never saw the sun go all the way down when I visited. I finally got to see it and it was with someone who had never seen an ocean sunset. It was so cool.

On the Seal Beach Pier is a Ruby's Restaurant that has chocolate, lemon and cherry coke. I always get the chocolate coke. We then walked off the pier to Main Street and I bought Jennifer a kite.

We then met AD, JK, DD and Mom at Downtown Disney and walked around. Then left and ate at Hof's.

Posted by Eric at 11:10 PM

Friday, November 24, 2006

Seals, a bell and a Lighthouse

Jennifer, DD, JK, AD, Mom and I drove to San Pedro over the St Thomas Bridge

to the Korean Bell on a cliff that overlooks the ocean.

From the cliff I could see the Los Angeles Harbor in San Pedro. We then went to the cliff that has the Point Ferman Lighthouse which is a lighthouse that I have been going to see since I was little.

I also finally got a good close picture of the LA Harbor lighthouse with my new camera with a 12x zoom.

Near the Korean Bell, is a place where seals are kept when they are hurt. They are helped and kept there until they are healed and then they are released. We went to go see them.

We then went to Cabrillo Beach to see the tide pools. Jennifer really enjoyed seeing the sea anemone and a starfish.

Then walked around 2nd street in Belmont Shore and ate ok Italian. We went and walked around the Queen Mary and ended the day with dessert at Hof's Hut.

Posted by Eric at 11:08 PM

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Turkey Dinner

Jennifer and I left to an exciting adventure to Long Beach, CA. This is her 1st time in CA and the 1st time meeting my family (with the exception of DD who she met at Mardi Gras). There were 10 of us which included Mom, DD, AD, JK, Bonnie, Nana, Carol (JK's mom) and Theresa (JK's sister). We had a great variety of foods and had great conversations. We then all got silly using DD's karaoke machine.

Happy Turkey Day!

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Saturday, October 7, 2006


Today I went to pick up Jennifer at her 2 day Cellular and Molecular Biology conference and headed to Brozo Bend State Park.

Link 1

Link 2

It is a nice looking park with talk trees and lakes.

We also saw an alligator.


It was a great day.

Posted by Eric at 10:42 PM

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Hometown to Current Home

I visited with Nana and Bonnie, showed them some pictures and saw a part of my spring concert video. Then to the airport to go home. I arrived in Houston and went to Jennifer's since I had not seen her in a couple of weeks.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Friday, August 11, 2006

Meteors and Crystal Trees

Went from New Mexico to Arizona.

We then went to see the Petrified Forest and Painted Desert. It is amazing to see. The Painted Desert is naturally colorful.

The distinct white layers are sandstone. The caps of the Tepees (the hill looking objects) are made of clay. The dark layers are caused by high carbon content. Darker reds are iron-stained siltstone. Reddish bases are stained by iron oxide, which is also called hematite.

We also saw the crystal forest, which are petrified logs that have glassy amethyst and quartz crystals in them.

DD surprised me and bought me a piece of petrified wood from a store there. It is still wrapped up and I will see it when I get home. I bought a pretty necklace of polished petrified wood for my pretty girlfriend Jennifer. I hope she likes it.

We then went to see the Meteor Crater.

It is huge. But it is deceptive because it does not look like it until you see how big things are and then can see how big is really is. There is a 6 foot cutout of an astronaut at the bottom of the crater and you can barely see it. There is a rock about the size of a house

and it looks small since it is so far way.

We then drove straight to California

and then to my hometown.

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Thursday, August 10, 2006

We're not in Kansas Anymore

Got up early and finally left and are now on our way to California.
We left Kansas

and crossed into Colorful Colorado.

1st time in Colorado. Ate lunch at Pancake House in Pueblo.

Then saw some cool looking mountains driving through Colorado. (pic)

We then made it to New Mexico.

Got gas in Los Vegas (New Mexico) and stayed in Gallup, New Mexico.

Posted by Eric at 11:40 PM

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

Stuff Finally Here

The moving company had a brilliant idea. How about getting another truck to tow the stuff so they can unload it? Good idea huh. Well the moving company was so stupid because Adam suggested that idea to them 2 days ago. So a truck towed it, unhooked off the trailer and left. Now when they were done, they were still blocking the driveway so we still could not go until the movers got their truck, which was now fixed, to move it. It was 4p when they finally did and Adam came home from the new teacher orientation. It was so late that we would not get very far before having to get a hotel. So we stayed another night.

Posted by Eric at 11:38 PM

Tuesday, August 8, 2006

Still in Kansas

We are still in Kansas. We were originally going to leave today but since they still have no stuff we stayed to help when it does. They were both had orientation today so Mom, DD and I droved around checking out the town. We did meet them for lunch at subway and had dinner at El Camino which was pretty good Mexican.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Monday, August 7, 2006

No Stuff

There stuff was supposed to be here today but instead their stuff is just 6 miles out of town. The moving truck broke down and spent all day waiting with Adam while JK was at a new teacher orientation. In the evening, I showed them a video of my spring concert with the choir and steel drums. Still was since hang out with AD and JK.

Posted by Eric at 11:36 PM

Sunday, August 6, 2006

Just Hanging Out

Today we just hung out, ate pizza and rented a movie.

Posted by Eric at 11:34 PM

Saturday, August 5, 2006

Fun at the Zoo

We went to zoo. We saw all kinds of animals.

It was fun to see all the animals up close.

Posted by Eric at 11:26 PM

Friday, August 4, 2006

Moving in to the New House

AD and JK closed their new house and we finally got to put their stuff from the cars into their house. We waited for their refrigerator to be delivered. It finally arrived at about 4p. We then went out to get some house stuff like paper towels, a trash can and other similar stuff.

Posted by Eric at 11:20 PM

Thursday, August 3, 2006

We are in Kansas

Today we got to see the new house AD and JK bought. It is a nice big place. On the main floor there are 3 bedrooms and a living room. In the basement, there is a big living room and 3 more bedrooms. The back yard is huge.

We then went to the college that AD will be teaching. We looked in the building and classrooms that he will be teaching in. It is a nice looking college. We then drove by where JK will be teaching and had dinner at the Golden Chorale. We then hung out in AD and JK's hotel room and I showed everyone the pictures of my travels the last 6 months and AD showed us the videos the took of his trips and snow pictures at his old house.

Posted by Eric at 11:18 PM

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

The Mountains of Colorado

We left Cheyenne and made our way down I 25 to Denver. Passed Denver and took I 70 to Old Town Burlington to see the Kit Carson Carousel. We all rode it for 25 cents.

Then continued in the I 70 out of Colorado

to Kansas

Just past the 35 mile marker we went from Mountain Time to Central Time.

We finally made it to Garden City, Kansas

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Tuesday, August 1, 2006

The Aw and Splendor of Wyoming

Got up and had free breakfast at the hotel. They had waffles and bagels. I had waffles and orange juice. Then started our way to Wyoming. When we got up this morning and until we got to Little America, Wyoming it was raining really hard. Salt Lake City had flooding and power outages. We left just in time.

We finally drove ahead of the rain and we finally got to see the aw and splendor of the natural wonders of Wyoming. We saw a lot of great mountains and rock formations.

One of them looked like a dessert with chocolate sauce running down sides of it.

We finally arrived in Cheyenne and stayed at a hotel there. We all hung out in my room talking until midnight.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM

Monday, July 31, 2006

Road Trip

Today I flew to Boise, Idaho to meet my family AD, JK, DD and Mom. AD and JK are moving from Ontario, Oregon to Garden City, Kansas for a new gig so we thought it would be fun to have a road trip. So we traveled from Idaho to Utah and stopped at a hotel in Ogden. When we all settled in our rooms, they all went to mine to give me presents. I did not expect any so it was a surprise. They got me a portable DVD player and a DVD Sky Captain. It was so cool of them. Thanks.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM

Saturday, June 24, 2006

A Couple of States on My List

Today was the drive north.

I started with the Portsmouth Lightship next to the hotel before taking the drive north.

I then headed north and drove the 17 mile Chesapeake Bay Tunnel-Bridge. That is correct, it is a tunnel and a bridge. It goes over the water for most of the trip across but a couple of times it goes underwater. I was then on the Virginia peninsula and went to the Virginia National Wildlife Refuge

to see Cape Charles Lighthouse in the distance in Smith Island.

To get to the observation desk, I took the butterfly trail.

While on the trail I saw a small turtle.

On to the next lighthouse which was in the Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge. I paid to get in and then found out that the trail to Assateague Lighthouse was closed which really sucked. So I got to see only part of it over the trees. I did get some good pictures in the Refuge. It reminded me of Sequoia with the meadows.

Then up to Maryland.

Then to Delaware

to see Fenwick Island Lighthouse.

Then went up to Cape Henlopen and put my feet into the Atlantic Ocean. It was cold like the Pacific. Much nicer than the Gulf of Mexico bathwater. Then the long drive back to the Hotel in Virginia.

Posted by Eric at 11:56 PM

Friday, June 23, 2006

5 Lighthouses in One Day

The conference gave us breakfast with was also good and then to the rest of the conference with ended at noon. I then took the other 3 from my college to the airport and drove to Virginia Beach (David: I thought of you while I was here). There were 2 lighthouses on a military base so my car had to be inspected which was no problem. The 2 lighthouses were close to each other.

The Old Cape Henry Lighthouse

was the 1st lighthouse commissioned by the US congress. I got to walk up the over 200 steps to the top.

It was decommissioned and the Ferneal lens was moved to the New Cape Henry Lighthouse. This lighthouse it still in use.

I then heading down south to North Carolina

to see more lighthouses. Next was the Currituck Beach Lighthouse.

I also got there in time to climb up to the top.

I then drove down the barrier reefs and islands to Bodie Island Lighthouse.

This lighthouse looks very much like Yaquina Head Lighthouse in Oregon.

I then went down to Cape Hatteras Lighthouse. By the time I got there it was dark. I still got to see it and take a picture of it.

I then took the long drive back to the hotel.

Posted by Eric at 11:12 PM

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The Conference

The conference is NACADA which stands for National ACadamic ADvising Association. This 2 day conference is for faculty advisers. It was a good day of info. Like most conferences there are some things that are boring, things that they thing is a new and incredible idea which really is not that great and things that are really cool and made the conference worth going. It took place at the Renaissance Hotel overlooking the Elizabeth River.


They gave us lunch with was buffet and really good. For dinner, I went with 3 others from my college to The Deck. Good food but a little over priced. Then hung out on the balcony with 2 of the others at from my college.

Posted by Eric at 10:48 PM

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

I Finally Get to Sleep

So I finally arrive to Norfolk and drive to my hotel, the Renaissance, and found out they over booked. So they set me up at the Marriot and I had to drive to there. I finally got into my room sometime past 11p. This is why I like doing things myself. When others do it, it turns into a day like today. I do have a nice view though.

Posted by Eric at 11:38 PM

Off to Virginia

I got up this morning ready to go to the airport that will take me to Norfolk, Virginia for a Faculty Advising Conference. So I finish putting the last of my stuff into the bags, get in my car and drive to IAH in north Houston. I just missed an interchange from North I 45 to the east 59 because some idiot did not let me into his lane. Instead he sped ahead and I missed it. So I had to get off at the next off ramp, make a U and then had to get on south I 45 to make the interchange. On the other side, where I was a few minutes ago, and accident must have just occurred and it was already looking like a parking lot. I am glad I just missed that mess. I finally arrived at the airport and when to parking lot C. When I got there the lot was full and said to go to lot A. I went to lot A and it said lot full use the parking lots on airport value lot. I parked and then waited for the shuttle to pick us up. It finally came and got to my airline self help ticket terminal to get my boarding pass. I was not in the system. Since the college set it up and paid for it I figured that it should be fine since they do this all the time. Well, when I asked a ticket person for help I found out that I was in the system but the ticket was not paid for. WHAT? So I paid for it and will get reimbursed when I get back. Hurried from terminal A to terminal B to my gate and I had missed my flight by 5 minutes. The next flight was 4 hours later. So I got a pizza meal which included a small pizza, a salad and a drink. So at least I ate a little healthy. I am glad I brought my laptop. I read one of Adam's short stories (which was very good), started writing my brass fanfare piece and wrote this entry. Back to composing.

Posted by Eric at 4:02 PM

Sunday, April 16, 2006

The Caves

Before Jennifer and I went down stairs for breakfast, we shared a piece of the Opłatek that I received from Nana when I was in California at Christmas. It was our special spiritual Easter moment.

We then went downstairs and had an eggs and bread mix that looked like a casserole. The table was decorated for Easter. Also on the table were eggs with confetti in them which is a Mexican tradition. We then said goodbye to O'Casey's and headed north to see the Natural Bridge Caverns. I have been to a few in California but they were not as big and still working and growing.


It was incredible to see it and to experience it with Jennifer. We then headed home.

It was a perfect trip with a perfect girl.

Happy Brightly Decorated Egg Day!

Easter Egg.gif

Happy Jesus Rising Day!


Posted by Eric at 10:12 PM

Saturday, April 15, 2006

The Amazing Missions

Today breakfast was waffles. Then to see the other four missions I had not seen (both Jennifer and I have seen the Alamo before we met). We started with Mission San Francisco de la Espada.


"In 1731, after their retreat from East Texas, the founders of San Francisco de los Tejas moved the mission to the San Antonio River and renamed it San Francisco de la Espada. Espada appears as remote today as it did in the mid 1700s. It boasts the best preserved segments of the historic acequias (the irrigation system designed to provide water for crops) part of which includes the still working Espada dam and aqueduct. The Espada Aqueduct, which carries water from the San Antonio River across Piedras Creek, continues to feed the original mission irrigation system. Espada Dam, built between 1731 and 1740, is the best existing example of the four Franciscan-designed dams placed on the San Antonio River. The dam is still in use today. Combined, these structures represent perhaps the best surviving physical assembly of an 18th century Spanish irrigation network in the United States. In 1995, the ranch that once supported Mission Espada, Rancho de las Cabras near Floresville, became part of the National Historical Park."

Then saw the Espada Aqueduct that is still working.


Then to Mission San Juan Capistrano.

"Established along the banks of the San Antonio River in 1731 after relocation from East Texas. With a rich farm and pasture lands it became a regional supplier of agricultural produce, which helped support the missions, local settlements and presidio garrisons. The chapel, with its open bell tower is still in use. A more elaborate church was never completed. The site includes a self-guided nature trail."

Then to Mission San Jose.


"Founded in 1720 by Fray Antonio Margil de Jesus, San Jose became the largest and best known of the Texas Missions and was viewed as the model among Texas missions. After early setbacks, 300 inhabitants were sustained by the vast fields and herds of livestock. A visitor in 1777 referred to the structure as the "Queen of the Missions." The carvings on the church are notable features. The famous "Rose Window" is considered one of the finest pieces of Spanish Colonial ornamentation in the country. Other features are the convento area and the stairway to the belfry and choir loft - each of the 25 risers was hand-sewn from a single live-oak log and constructed without nails or pegs. Also featured is a granary with flying buttresses, a gristmill, restored defensive walls, and quarters."

Then to Mission Concepcion.

"This handsome church looks essentially as it did 200 years ago. From 1731, religious festivals were held as friars strove to replace traditional Native American ritual by the demonstration of Christian ideals. Remnants of wall and ceiling paintings in the surviving rooms of the mission's convento have been conserved. Wayside exhibits lead visitors around the grounds and through the various rooms. The site also features a visitor contact station and a sales area."

What a great time though the past.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Friday, April 14, 2006

To the Market

We had breakfast at our bed and breakfast at a large with the other guests. It was rather fun. It was like waking up with a large family. Today was pancakes and eggs.

We when downtown to Historic Market Square. There were a lot of little stores with lots of stuff in them. Jennifer bought some real vanilla from Mexico.


We then walked to the Spanish Governor's Palace.

A national historic landmark, labeled "the most beautiful building in San Antonio" by the National Geographic Society, it once housed the officials of the Spanish Province of Texas. Over the entrance is the original keystone which contains the carved, double-headed eagle of the Hapsburg coat-of-arms and the inscription, in Spanish, finished in 1749. Distinguishing features include period furnishings and a cobblestone patio with fountain and foliage.

It was great touring the building and the patio.


We then walked to a large Catholic church and walked in during mass.

I grew up Catholic but I never have been in a Mass with a Mexican tradition. During the part of the Mass I was when I walked in was a large wooden cross which moved by the congregation over their heads so all could touch it. So when it came by me I touched it. It was a special moment.

We then went to the La Margarita for the Lenten Special.
It was so good. The best Mexican I have had in a while. We had grilled fish, seafood enchilada filled with shrimp and top with shrimp sauce and queso, rice and black beans. And included with the special was dessert.

We then walked around the Riverwalk.

What a really fun day.

Posted by Eric at 11:48 PM

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Road Trip to San Antonio

Picked up Jennifer at 7p and headed to San Antonio for our first road trip together. After a few hours, we were hungry and at a truck stop were there was Popeye's chicken. It was a real truck stop because over the speaker they announced when a shower was available. We arrived at about 11p to the turn of the century house O'Casey's Bed and Breakfast. We were in the Kerry Room. I was so tired I crashed immediately.

Posted by Eric at 11:32 PM

Saturday, February 4, 2006

Up to the Trees

Jennifer and I took a trip to the Woodlands. After living in Marin, CA I have seen trees but for Texas it was nice. It was mostly pine trees. We also went to the North Harris College to check out their steel drum band and meet the director. It is a good band. The campus is nice with pine trees surrounding the college. We then drove to a park on Lake Woodlands. It was a nice view. Reminded me a little of the Mt. Tam area. We then went the Macaroni Grill for dinner which was very good. It was nice to see lots of trees again.

Posted by Eric at 11:44 PM

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Leaving My Hometown and Going Back Home

Had breakfast at pancake house with AD, JK, DD and Mom. DD drove me to the airport and I was heading back home. It was a great trip and a great christmas. It as also fun staying at the same house with AD and JK. Thanks DD. DD cleaned and fixed his house up so that our stay was a good one. So thanks DD for everything.

Posted by Eric at 11:14 PM

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Family Gathering

I went to Souplantation with DD and Mom. I then spent some alone time with Mom, which was fun. I then with Mom to meet AD, JK and DD at Nana and Bonnie's house to play Scrabble. Nana does the crossword puzzles in the newspaper all the time so when she plays this game she usually kicks everyone else's butts. So when one of us actually beats Nana, it is an accomplishment. I actually beat her once. This time JK did. Then back to DD's and talked with AD and JK until 3a.

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Monday, December 26, 2005

My Close Friend

Today I went to see my close friend Kimberly. It was nice to see her. I showed her the pictures I have taken since the last time I saw her. We then did some music together. I miss playing piano for someone with a great singing voice like Kimberly's. We went though some of the ones we used to do and also did some new ones. It was nice spending the day with her.

Posted by Eric at 10:06 PM

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day

AD, JK, DD and I went to Marcine (my Dad's sister) and her husband Mike's house for the Christmas dinner party. Now I mean a party. Mike's brothers come along with their wives and kids. This year there were at least 22 people that came. Dinner is always buffet style. We then to the white elephant present game. I was number 14. Last year during the game there was a wrapping paper ball fight, so this year Michelle (my cousin) and I grabbed some wrapping paper, crumpled them into a ball and started throwing them at people. Thus starting the wrapping paper ball fight. It was a really fun evening.

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 10:56 PM

Saturday, December 24, 2005

Wesołych Świąt

This year it was AD, JK, DD, Mom, Nana, Bonnie and I. After dinner we did something new. It was something JK had suggested which was that each of us had to do something creative. JK played the recorder and AD accompanied her on his drum. Mom played the guitar, I also played something on the recorder and played something together with Mom. AD played an electronic piece about how Mary and Joseph might have felt this night. Bonnie and Nana had created a holiday crossword puzzle. I called my girlfriend Jennifer and we did ours together.
For the traditions we do on Christmas Eve click on last years entry.

Posted by Eric at 10:42 PM

Friday, December 23, 2005

Hanging Out

AD, JK and I went to the Guitar Center since AD does not have one back home. We did what we always do when we walk into the keyboard room. We both start improvising with each other. It was fun. We then went to the grocery store so JK could make some stuffing. Then hung out at the house.

Posted by Eric at 10:40 PM

Thursday, December 22, 2005

My Brother Came Home

My brother Adam came in this afternoon so DD, AD, JK, Mom and I went to Claim Jumper for dinner. I am so use to coming home and having Adam already here instead of him flying in. AD, JK and I are staying at DD's house. It is cool because we can have those late night conversations and then just walk into the next room and go to bed. It is nice to be home.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Back Home to SoCal

I flew back to my home town.and DD picked me up at the Long Beach Airport. We then went to eat at the Elephant Bar. I had never eaten there before and I got the fired grilled salmon. It was really good. Then to DD's for some sleep.

Posted by Eric at 11:50 PM

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Instant Hurricane Vacation


Ya that picture pretty much says it all.

On Tuesday I saw Rob covering TV's with plastic and I asked what he was doing and told me about the Hurricane. So I looked on the internet and saw it and its projection to Texas. Now you are are probably asking how come I did not see it sooner. I am from SoCal. I am not used to looking for swirly things in the ocean. So I went to my music area and covered up my stuff in my office and all the pianos. I then went home, moved things away from the windows and covered them up. I then started my way up to stay at my friend Alison's house by 9p.

As it looked on Tuesday. Click image to enlarge it.

Woke up on Wednesday and her friend Tim, also from Galveston, had shown up while I was asleep. Alison had to teach so I hung around the house.

As it looked on Wednesday. Click image to enlarge it.
It was predicted to be a Catagory 5 headed straight at Galveston.

Wednesday story on CNN.

On Thursday since everything was closed all we did was eat, read, talk, watch DVD's and sleep.
Rita changed its path and was downgraded to a Category 4 storm. That was still 150mph winds.

As it looked on Thursday. Click image to enlarge it.
Thursday story on CNN.


Hurricane Rita was downgraded to a Category 3 storm, after winds slowed to about 125 mph. But it was still heading for Galveston.

Click image to enlarge it.

It hit land late at night. I just wanted to sleep right though it which I did. It luckily turned at the last minute as the expression goes. So we were on the good side of it.

As it looked on Friday. Click image to enlarge it.
Friday story on CNN.

Saturday there was finally a restaurant open and we actually ate and got out of the house. I bought Alison dinner to thank her for letting me stay during all this.
As it looked on Saturday. Click image to enlarge it.

Sunday we ate at the Cheese Cake Factory. Jennifer was back in town by Sunday night (she was in Germany for 2 weeks) and so I went to stay with her. Electricity was slowly coming back on by Monday but there was still part of the island that did not have electricity. So I came back Wednesday afternoon and went though my apartment, looked for damage and uncovered my stuff. Nothing major. Some water had seeped through the window in my studio and I could not open my balcony doors upstairs. But that is it considering how bad it might have gotten.

That makes 2 things this year that I dodged the bullet. This hurricane and my car accident. I feel pretty lucky.

Posted by Eric at 5:06 PM

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggady Jig

I had to wake up at 5a to catch my flight out of Boise at 7:35a. When flying east you have to get an early flight in order to get home at a descent hour. Since I have a meeting tomorrow I wanted at least an evening to get acclimated at home again. I said my goodbye to AD and JK and Mom and DD took me to the Boise airport. It was a long flight. I had to fly to Atlanta, Georgia before arriving at the Houston Hobby airport. George was nice enough to pick me up at the airport. Went to my apartment and said hi to it after about 2 weeks of not seeing it. We then went to eat at Salsas since all I had today was airplane food. I am home again and it is nice to see the ocean again.

Posted by Eric at 11:46 PM

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

AD's New Gig

We had lunch at Wingers. A 1950's style restaurant. Today AD took us to Treasure Valley Community College which is the college he will be working. He has a cool and diverse gig. We will be teaching English, Speech and be the community theater director. We showed us the nice size theater and his new office. As my Aunt Bonnie would say, "It is pretty spiffy." AD and JK went off to get things done and Mom, DD and I walked around the museum in the Cultural Center on campus. It is a very good, very well done museum. Then back to their home had pizza delivered (can you tell we like pizza) and ate the cake Mom, DD and I got for there housewarming. I showed AD my pictures of the travels I have taken this past year. Now to bed for tomorrow I go back home.

Posted by Eric at 11:42 PM

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Their Stuff Arrives

The moving van showed up this morning and Mom and DD were there to help. I stayed at the hotel and slept in. I have already had the moving experience 2 times in 2 years. We ate at a restaurant where there is all you can eat pizza. We then all hung out at their house and I helped AD set up the 2 most important things: The music studio with the computer and synths and the entertainment center with the tv, dvd player and the surround sound system. AD, like myself, is all about making sure those 2 important things work. Especially the studio since we are both music composers. This evening we had pizza delivered and watch a videoed episode of Star Gate.

Posted by Eric at 11:26 PM

Monday, August 15, 2005

To Their New Home

Our trip takes us from Utah

to Idaho

and finally Ontario, Oregon which is in Eastern Oregon.

On our way I saw these summits or mountains with plateaus.

I got to see AD and JK's nice looking house. It has 2 bedrooms, a basement, an extra room in the basement and a big front and back yard with roses, fruit trees and a vegetable garden. We all ate at the Country Kitchen restaurant and then all hit the bed after a long time on the road.

Posted by Eric at 11:34 PM

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Road Trip

We left LA at 4a. Ya it's early but we had to do it for 2 reasons. The 1st is obvious, the only way to avoid the morning rush hour (we should call it rush morning) is to leave real early. The 2nd is that we will be driving though the desert and wanted to travel through it during the cooler part of the day as log as possible. The destination is Ontario, Oregon where AD has a college gig and JK has a Kindergarten gig. We made a stop in Las Vegas and had the brunch at the Excalibur. Mom really likes Star Trek but she is not really into Las Vegas and will never really stay there so we thought today would be a good time to take her to the Star Trek Experience at the Hilton. We did both the Klingon and the Borg experience. They were fun. Then off we went to Salt Lake City with some great scenery on the way.

Pine Valley Mountains

In Utah we saw a rainbow

and a nice sunset.

So we came from California

though Nevada,


and Utah.

It was about a 15 hour drive and took all day but we finally made it.

Posted by Eric at 10:32 PM

Saturday, August 13, 2005

An Old Friend and Nana

Today I went to eat lunch with my friend Liz and new Ruby's that just opened up on 2nd street. Then went to Nana's to hang out and visit. Of course during the conversation hockey usually comes up. She is a major hockey fan, even more that I am. When I still lived here we use to go to the Ice Dogs game. At least one time during the game she would yell out something that players are doing wrong and I would die laughing. I still have the paw and the stuffed dogs they gave out before the game.

Posted by Eric at 11:58 PM

Friday, August 12, 2005

My Lighthouse

Mom was at Adam's place watching the movers pack the truck. They then called me up and went to Pancake House. I wanted to see two of the places I used to go to calm down and think so I had Mom and DD come with me. They are the Reef and the lighthouse. The Reef is a park area near the restaurant called the Reef and the Queen Mary. Across the water is a nice view of Long Beach.

We then went to my lighthouse. The lighthouse is on Point Fermin in San Pedro. The lighthouse is in Victorian style.

I had been taken there since I was little by both of my parents. During my college years I when there many times with my friend John. It is a nice view of the ocean and you can hear the waves crashed against the rocks. Just before I left to Marin a couple of years ago, the lighthouse was in the process of being restored. Now is looks really good and I finally have good pictures of it. We then went to eat at Hoff's Hut with AD and JK.

Posted by Eric at 10:58 PM

Thursday, August 11, 2005

Brother Time

Today my brother Adam came over. I showed him my pictures and played my new music pieces and he played his new videos and new music pieces.
Then DD, Mom, AD, JK and I went to Souplantation since they will not have one where they are moving to.

Posted by Eric at 10:58 PM

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Lunch with Mom

Today was more family world. I had a nice long lunch with Mom at Pancake House followed by a walk around the Hallmark store. Then dinner with AD, JK, DD and Mom at Souplantation which is another of our local hangouts.

Posted by Eric at 11:24 PM

Tuesday, August 9, 2005

Music and Friends

Today Kimberly and I did some music together. We then had dinner with her friend Jenny. (Ya I know. A lot of Jennifers around).

Posted by Eric at 10:54 PM

Monday, August 8, 2005

Another Birthday Dinner

Got up late and relaxed around the house until DD came home. We then talked and hung out in front of the tv. Then my friend Kimberly came by to take me out to dinner for my birthday. She took me to Ruby's on the end of the pier in Seal Beach. It is a great view and it was our local hangout when I lived here. I watched the sun set behind the hills of Palos Verdes.

Posted by Eric at 10:46 PM

Sunday, August 7, 2005

3 Celebrations

Today the family went to the buffet at El Torito to celebrated 3 things. The 1st it my birthday, the 2nd is Nana's (my Mom's mom) birthday and 3rd was AD and JK's going away lunch since they both got a gig in eastern Oregon and are moving up there next weekend. At the lunch was myself, DD, AD, JK, Mom, Nana, Bonnie (my Mom's sister), Carol (JK's Mom) and Theresa (JK's sister). It was great hanging out with the family. I then went to Nana's house and showed Nana, Bonnie, Mom and DD pictures of my recent trips and played a recording of my new age style piano pieces.

Posted by Eric at 10:24 PM

Saturday, August 6, 2005

Going Back to My Home Town

Today I flew back to my hometown which is the LA area, specifically Lakewood. DD (my dad) picked me up from the airport. We then went to eat at Claim Jumper since there are not any in Houston or Galveston and it was (still is for the rest of my family) one of our local hangout restaurants. Then went to my old house and played my piano. It is the piano I grew up playing since I was 3. Then went to Hof's Hut with AD (my brother Adam), JK (his wife Jennifer which is a different Jennifer than the one I am dating), DD and Mom. It was nice to hang out with my parents and brother again.

Posted by Eric at 8:24 PM

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Back to the Island

We started on our way back home and said bye to the green rolling hills of Austin. We ate at Mak's Roadhouse on the way home. A really good barbecue place.

Posted by Eric at 11:30 PM

Saturday, July 23, 2005

On the Hills of Austin

Today we drove around the outside of Austin on the hills and down to the lakes.

I even got to see a rainbow.

We then went to 6th street and walked around listening to the local bands. There were a lot of people walking around including a lot of really cute girls.

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Friday, July 22, 2005

Seeing the Capital

Today we had lunch at Z' Tejas Grill. We then went to see the Texas Capitol building built in 1888 and has been restored. It was incredible to see and walk through.

The House Chamber

The Senate Chamber

There was the word Texas and that star all over the place. Even on the Chandelier.

A view of downtown Austin from the Capital window.

Here is a building with a unique top. It is the Frost Bank Tower.

To preserve the grounds around the capital, the new offices are underground.
We then went to the Texas State History Museum. 3 floors of Texas history. After all that I need a shower to wash off all this Texas off of me.

We stopped by the University of Austin to see The Tower

On the way back to the hotel I we stopped to see Town Lake. What an incredible view.

For dinner we ate at Uchi, a really good Japanese Restaurant.

Posted by Eric at 11:40 PM

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Off to Austin

So Ron and I started out drive to check out Austin, TX for the weekend continuing my adventures of the Texas cities. I had been to Houston many times for dancing and the symphony, San Antonio was in March and now Austin. After going though the "parking lot" of Houston traffic (which is still nothing like LA) we finally see rolling hills. We stopped in Columbus which is an old German community. We had lunch at a Garnett's which was pretty good. There is an Opera House built in 1886.

We saw also stopped to see a nice view on an outlook.

We finally got to our Hotel in Austin and took a nap. We then went to Jeffrey's for dinner. A really nice restaurant and the food was really good. I had tuna and a creme brulee for dessert.

We then walked down the famous 6th street where there are clubs lined up and down the street and the street is blocked from traffic. It will be packed on Saturday.

Posted by Eric at 11:14 PM

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Leaving Oregon

I left back home to Galveston today. It was a great trip. I had great conversations with David, saw mountains, trees and waterfalls, and rediscovered my passion for composing. What a great trip.

Posted by Eric at 11:54 PM

Saturday, July 16, 2005

The McKenzie River Waterfalls

Today we went to see the two waterfalls on the McKenzie River. Even though I have visited Oregon many times, I somehow had not seen these waterfalls in 9 years. The 1st waterfall is the Sahalie Falls. What a great looking waterfall.

We then walked on along the McKenzie River on a trail to the other waterfall.

We then arrived at the 2nd waterfall, the Koosah Falls.

Just passed the Koosah falls we could see the rest of the river going down through the valley.

What a great view.

Posted by Eric at 10:42 PM

Friday, July 15, 2005

The Oregon Coast

Today David and I went to the incredible Oregon Coast. We went to see the Heceta Head Lighthouse. I had seen it when I had visited Oregon before but I wanted to see it again.

It sits on a really pretty part of the hill overlooking the ocean.

We then went to the Cape Perpetua overlook were we could see the entire Cape Perpetua from above.

We then drove down to Spouting Horn. There is a cave under the rocks and when enough waves hit, the water gets trapped and spouts out from a hole on top of the cave. It looks like a whale spout. It is so cool.

We then went to Florence and saw this sign coming into the old town.

We ate at Mo's. Really good seafood. Then home.

Posted by Eric at 10:20 PM

Thursday, July 14, 2005

My Favorite Waterfall

Today David and I had lunch at Quiznos and then set out to see my favorite waterfall, Salt Creek Falls. It is a big and very pretty waterfall falling into a valley. Driving up the mountains and seeing walls of nice green trees. It was so cool. We get there and it is just as I remember it. We walked down to the bottom of the valley to really see it. We stayed and visited my waterfall for about 2 hours. It was so nice.

On our way back to Eugene we stopped to see a really nice covered bridge called Wild Cat Bridge.

Then headed back to Eugene and ate at Steelhead. I ate some pizza and had some real home made root beer. It is so good. We the came back to David and Julia's (his wife) place and listened to each others music. It was great to listen and talk about each other's music and give each other suggestions and ideas. It was something we had not done in person in awhile and it was nice to experience that again.

Posted by Eric at 11:40 PM

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

I love Traveling, I Hate Flying

Ok. So in theory the plan is to fly to Eugene, OR at 6:57p making one stop in Phoenix, AZ. I really need to get off the Island, out of Texas and actually see mountains, trees and waterfalls. But in reality, it is a whole new scenario. So I am on my way to IAH Airport and I hit a lot of rain plus lightning and thunder (why do people say 'thunder then lightning' when you really see the lightning first then you hear the thunder?). I finally get to IAH and find out that my flight to Phoenix is delayed for about an hour. So I relax, eat something and finally get on the plane.

When I arrive in Phoenix I book from concord A to concord B to catch my flight to Eugene. I get to the gate and the plane had just departed. AAAAAAH!!!!!! (It probably what not just as I got there it left but at least within 5-10 minutes. It was still close.) Since that was the last flight to Eugene, I have to fly to Las Vegas to then fly to Eugene. So I have about 2 hours to before the flight to Las Vegas. So I got a personal pizza and talked on the phone. I am so glad for cell phones. I ended up talking on it the whole time talking to my Mom, Kimberly, and then my friends Alison and Jules called. I did see a couple of really funny things. I saw a guy standing on the wing of an airplane and saw a bird flying in the terminal. I then get on the plane for Las Vegas.

I get there and see slot machines in the terminal. Only in Vegas. I played a couple of dollars on the quarter slots. Won a few quarters and lasted for a little bit and of course were put back into the machine. I then get on the plane for Eugene. I did get to see a great sky view of the strip. I landed in Eugene about 1:55a. From getting to IAH around 1p to landing in Eugene 13 hours later, I was in La La Land. So on my way outside to be picked up by my friend David, this song popped into my head and started singing it.
"Old McDonnell had a farm
and on this farm he had some crap
with a spat, spat here
and a spat, spat there
here a spat, there a spat, everywhere a spat, spat
Old McDonnell had a farm
E I E I O."


Posted by Eric at 11:54 PM

Saturday, May 7, 2005

BJ's Pizza

Hey while I was looking for a new car with George near Baybrook Mall (just outside of Houston) I found a BJ's Pizza. I have missed that place since I moved away from the LA area. The BJ's here opened a couple years ago. It still has the 2 things I like about the place, great pizza and cute waitresses.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Tuesday, March 8, 2005

More Walking Around San Antonio

We had lunch at Las Canarias and sat outside next to the river.

It was a nice setting for lunch. We then walked to La Villita. A little village of shops and museums.

The History of La Villita.

We then walked to Hemisfair Park. Walked back to the car and headed home. Before going into Galveston, we picked up George and had dinner at a barbeque restaurant. After dinner, dropped him off and went home.

It was nice to get out of the area and into a new city for a few days. It allowed me to think about what has happened this semester and to figure out what kind of things I want to happen during the rest of the semester. I received an insight and a new perspective on things. It was a nice vacation.

Posted by Eric at 11:15 PM

Monday, March 7, 2005

Walking Around San Antonio

We had lunch at the Liberty Bar Restaurant. The wall are asymmetrical so it looks like the building is about to fall down. A couple more sites about the Liberty Bar 1 2. It was a good lunch. We walked to The Alamo and walked though the old buildings. We then walked to the
Menger Hotel.

Ron then drove me around to see some nice housing communities with large and old houses. Thy were King Williams Historical District, Alamo Heights, Terrell Hills and Olmos Park. What nice houses. He also took me to Trinity University, is old school where he received his BM and MM in organ and choral conducing. It is a nice looking campus.

We drove by a couple of his early church gigs before studying organ in France. Drove back to the hotel and walked on the riverwalk to Biga on the Banks. A restaurant on the riverwalk.

Posted by Eric at 11:30 PM

Sunday, March 6, 2005

To San Antonio

Ron and I went to Pancake House for lunch and then headed for San Antonio for a few days. It was a nice drive. Still flat as a pancake. I am use to driving in California. When you take long drive somewhere you will either see hills and mountains or go over them. But here, flat as a pancake. We did hit some traffic going into Houston and going out of Houston so the 3 hour drive San Antonio to over 4 hours. We checked into the hotel and I got some free popcorn in the lobby. (I love popcorn and I just can not pass it up). They also had free drinks so I got a screwdriver and Ron got a scotch and water. The hotel is right on the riverwalk so we sat by a window with the river as a view. We then went to a nice restaurant called Silo. I had salmon and it was very good. We came back and walked on the riverwalk. The river is below the city and there are restaurants and pubs along the river. It is a nice looking place.

Posted by Eric at 11:06 PM

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

The Flight Home

You know it can not be a flight back home without having delays. The plane out of Long Beach came in late so we left late. The airline said that all connecting flights were fine. So I fly into Phoenix and as I walk off the plane I was told that the flight to Houston left already. So I was put on a plane that had only one seat left that departed 2 hours later. So I ate a pizza at the California Pizza Kitchen in the airport. The flight came in an hour late to keep with tradition and came into Houston at 11:45p. I left Long Beach almost 12 hours earlier. It was a very long day.

Posted by Eric at 11:12 PM

Monday, January 3, 2005

A Day with the Family

Kimberly drove me back to my Dad's apartment in Long Beach where I had been staying during by trip back home. I had a goodbye dinner with AD, JK, DD and Mom at Claim Jumper. Then Mom took me to say goodbye to Nana and Bonnie since I will be flying back tomorrow to my new home in Galveston.

Posted by Eric at 10:58 PM

Sunday, January 2, 2005

Dancing Until the End

Got up late again and went to some more workshops that included another Casino Rueda workshop (it was still fun) and a Night Club workshop.

Posted by Eric at 11:55 PM

Saturday, January 1, 2005

Happy New Year

Went to more dance workshops which included the Casino Rueda. This is a Latin dance in which dancers are in a circle and change partners during the dance. But unlike a dance mixer which is simple with maybe 4 moves, the Casino Rueda includes many moves. It was a fun class. I hung out in the Jacuzzi before going to the Night Club workshop which was also very good. I then went to an equally good West Coast Swing Workshop. The evening included open dancing and way to many dance competitions. I did dance past midnight again.

Posted by Eric at 11:50 PM

Friday, December 31, 2004

Dancing into the New Year

I got up around noon since I danced passed 2a last night. I then went to some dance workshops. There was a Salsa one that was so bad I left half way though it. It did go to a good Country 2 Step and a West Coast Swing workshop. I then went to the Swing Ballroom for the Masquerade Ball Dinner and Show. Dinner was really good. It was a buffet so of course I had seconds. The show included dancers from the US Open Dance Competition. They were all very good. After the show was open dancing and I dance going between the Swing and Salsa Ballrooms. I danced under the balloons in the Swing Ballroom so I could be there when they dropped. The countdown to the New Year began
5 4 3 2 1 Happy New Year!
and the balloons dropped on top of me, toasted and drank Champaign. 2005 has begun. I then spent the rest of the night dancing.

This is cute.
Happy New Year!

Posted by Eric at 11:18 PM

Thursday, December 30, 2004

Dancing in the Desert

DD, AD, Jk and I had the Free breakfast at the hotel. It was one of the best continental breakfasts I have had since the hotel I stayed at in Washington. It had pancakes, French toast, muffins, cereal and yogurt. A nice spread. Then we went to pick up Mom back at Barbara and Dave's and started our way back to the LA area. They dropped me off in Palm Springs (I just like the way that sounds, they dropped me off. It is a 6 hour drive and they just dropped me off. Ya I know but is just sound funny) at the Doral Palm Springs Resort for the
Swing'n New Year's Dance Camp and Salsa Extravaganza. I met up with my friend Kimberly who will be my ride back to the LA area when the camp ends. We went to eat at Sizzler and got back in time to see the Jill and Jack West Coast Swing Competition.

Let me give you some background. During the camp, there are dance competitions in various dances which were West Coast Swing, Salsa, Hustle and Night Club and at various levels which were novice, intermediate, advanced and professional (many were dance teachers in this category). There were competitions like Strictly Swing in which the partners had practiced and danced with each other before. With the Jack and Jill, it is different. It starts with the leaders being called up and standing in a line. Then the followers are called up and each stand in front of a leader. A playing card is picked from an audience member and the followers move to the right the number of leaders as the number shown on the card. The dancers now dance with someone they have not danced with before. The Jack and Jill competition shows how well you can lead or follow.

This evening it was a Jill and Jack which the girls lead and the guys followed. They also took it further than that. The guys wore dresses and girls clothes and the girls wore guys clothes. It was so funny and they were all good dancers as well. Then there was open dancing in the Swing and Salsa Ballrooms. I danced with a lot of really cute girls and danced until 2a.

Posted by Eric at 11:42 PM

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Weaves of Sparkling Lights

Today we went to the Native American Museum at the Arizona State University. Displayed at the museum were weaves (rugs, blankets) created by Native Americans. In one room were early weaves and in the other room were weaves created in the 20th and 21st century. They were all amazing works of art. We then all went to a bakery in a grocery store to get some dessert. We then took it to their apartment to eat them. My dessert was very good. We then went to a housing community called Winterhaven where they had an amazing display of sparkling Christmas lights which were judged and some won city awards. They were all very pretty and creative.

Posted by Eric at 11:30 PM

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Going to "Arizona Maybe"

To travel out of the LA area without running into a lot of traffic, you have to either leave late at night of early in the morning. We choose early in the morning, 4a in the morning. That is way too early for me. A few years ago I use to go to bed at that time. So at 4a, Mom, DD, AD, JK and I started the drive east to Oro Valley, Arizona where my Mom's sister, Barbara and her husband Dave live. The drive started with a hard rainfall which lessened as we proceeded east. When we came into the dessert, we saw these isolated mountains with the sun peeking through the clouds. It was nice to see the mountains again. The desert is a unique place with very little green or tall plants except for cacti. The Saguaro Cactus are in Arizona which we do not see in California. We dropped off our stuff at the hotel and went to their apartment. We hung out, ate pizza and talked. It was really nice to see and hang out with them.

Posted by Eric at 11:04 PM

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Seeing the Old Hang Outs

This evening I asked DD if he wanted to drive around and take me to some of my old hang outs. He took me to 2 of them. One is on Signal Hill. It has changed a lot. There are much more houses on the hill than there were 2 years ago. The view from the hill is still nice. The 2nd place was what I call The Reef. It is a park area between the Queen Mary and a restaurant called The Reef. From this park you can see all of downtown across the water. I would come often when I lived here whenever I wanted to calm down and think.

A view of Long Beach from The Reef

Posted by Eric at 11:40 PM

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Merry Christmas

Happy Lighted and Decorated Tree Day!!!!!!

Posted by Eric at 11:36 PM

Friday, December 24, 2004

Wesołych Świąt

Christmas Eve has always been a more important and more fun of a day than Christmas Day. Mainly because of the Polish Traditions that I have been brought up into since I was little. Christmas has always been about family to me. Tonight they were my mom, her sister, her mom (who we have always called Nana), my dad, my brother Adam, his wife Jennifer and her mom.

The Christmas dinner begins with the Opłatek (a Christmas Wafer) which is pronounced "Oh-pwah-tek." The sacred white wafer, a semi-transparent wafer of unleavened dough stamped with scenes of the nativity, are shared with each person present. During the exchange, good wishes are expressed. Then we start eating. A Polish dish I always look forward to at Christmas is the Gołabki (Cabbage Roll-Ups) which is pronounced "goh-wab-kee." This Christmas there were 2 different kinds, one with meat and the other with buckwheat. I always like to eat the meat one.

For desert was 2 cakes, the booze cake and the poppy seed cake, a pumpkin pie and a Reese's peanut butter cup cake made by Adam and Jennifer. They are really good but my favorite has always been the booze cake.

This year Adam and Jennifer had us play games which were really fun. Then we opened presents.

As always, a great Christmas with the family.

More about the Opłatek
More about the Polish Christmas Eve Dinner

Wesołych Świąt (Merry Christmas)!


Posted by Eric at 11:54 PM

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Coming Home

My plane flew into the Long Beach airport yesterday evening. It is always a unique feeling coming back home to the place you grew up. Those of you who have moved far away enough that you have to fly to come home will know what that feeling is like. It will always be home but it no longer feels like home. For me Galveston now feels like home. But it is always great to be back here for Christmas.

Today I had breakfast-lunch at pancake house with my brother, Adam. We then went back to his apartment and listened to each others music. It was nice spending a few hours just with him. He dropped me off at my Mom's house which is also the house I lived in when I live in Lakewood. It has been a year since I have seen the house. A flood of images and memories came to me. What it was like then and were I am now. Mom and I met DD at BJ's. There have always been 2 things I really like about BJ's Restaurant, the great Chicago style pizza and the cute waitresses. Well this evening they were both good.

Posted by Eric at 11:14 PM

Sunday, October 31, 2004

Halloween Parties

Ok. So I am teaching 4 classes (2 Music Appreciation, History of Rock and Roll and Choir). Now add 16 piano students that I did not know I had to teach until the 2nd week of school. On top of all that I have to build up a music program that has been dead for 4 years. So now, I have zero time during the week.

So the weekend is my only time to get other things done. Saturdays I tend to sleep in very late. Trying to catch up on sleep I did not have during the week. I usually sit around the apartment, relax, watch TV and generally recover from the week.

Sundays are my "better get some personal stuff done" day. That usually encompasses laundry and grocery shopping.

But every so often I go out and have fun. Yesterday seemed like a good time to get out. So about 7p I went to the church I am temporarily working at for their Halloween party to get some free food (there it is again) and to hang out.

OK background. One of the members of my choir is the pastor of the Westminster Presbyterian Church and they are currently between choir directors. She had asked me in the beginning of the year if I could come and help temporarily. Now she asked me during the 1st week of school before I found out I have 16 piano students. So ya, another thing to add to my already busy schedule. I am only staying until the end of the semester.

OK flashback over. So the church party ended about 8:30p and I went looking for the next Halloween party. This next one was told to me by one of my students. She was going to be one of the 3 DJ's at the party and asked if I would come. The party was in an old abandoned synagogue. A perfect place for a Halloween party. The inside was decorated well by the people putting on the party. The people at the party were cool and easy to talk to. I ran into a fellow faculty member. I also ran into the owner of a local coffee shop here on the island who I had talked to during the art walk a few weeks ago. It was definitely a cool evening. Happy Free Candy Day.

Posted by Eric at 10:42 PM

Saturday, September 11, 2004

A Trip to the Past

I had planned on documenting the events of each day from the move from Greenbrae to Galveston. At first, it was not a difficult task and I could spare a few minutes to write the events down. With school starting and my stuff coming 2 days later, I seemed to have very little time to write between planning for my classes and unpacking nice brown boxes.

DD left on Labor Day (Monday) so Mom and I went off to unpack and fix up my bedroom. We finished the bedroom and my bathroom on Monday. During the rest of the week Mom would unpack books and stuff and I would go teach then come back and help her. By Saturday were almost done.

Saturday we went to the Ashton Villa.

Link to the History of Ashton Villa

Another link with some interior views

An amazing house. While on the tour we could actually go into the rooms not just look at them behind a rope. It enabled me to imagine living in that house during that time period.

We then went to the The Strand National Historic Landmark District which is downtown Galveston. Still looks like it did at the turn of the century.

We ate at Yaga's Cafe. Really good food. We then went to an Ice Cream place and I got birthday cake ice cream. It was so good. Yummy.

Posted by Eric at 8:40 PM

Sunday, September 5, 2004

The Houston Space Center

Today was the trip to the Houston Space Center. We went on the tour and saw Hangar X (which was originally going to be the escape ship form the International Space Station), the Space Vehicle Mockup Facility (where the astronauts train for up coming missions) and the Historic Mission Control Center (where all of the Apollo mission were controlled from). It was amazing to see the control center. After watching movies and documentaries of the Mercury, Gemini and Apollo missions, to be in the same room where all that happened was almost a religious experience.


Posted by Eric at 8:22 PM

Saturday, September 4, 2004


DD and I went to pick up Mom from the Hobby Airport. We then went to the Moody Gardens Rainforest Pyramid. It was really cool. Actually it is really humid. In the pyramid is an actual rainforest with 2,000 different species. The rainforest within the pyramid is split into 3 sections. The rainforests are Africa, Asia and South America. There are so many animal species that every time you go into the pyramid it will be different every time. Just to continue the rainforest theme, we ate at the rainforest Cafe complete with large fish tanks and mechanical gorillas, elephants and an occasional thunder and lighting storm.


Posted by Eric at 7:58 PM

Friday, September 3, 2004

The 1st Week as a College Professor

Ok. Let's try to sum up all the fun and chaos I have gone through this past week. Well, On Sunday, DD and I want to the aquarium at the Moody Gardens here on the island. Moody Gardens consists of 3 pyramids; the aquarium, the rainforest, the discovery museum, a paddlewheel boat (like on the Mississippi River) and IMAX theater. It was fun seeing the fishies. There were also penguins there which are also cute.



Monday was supposed to be my Monday/Wednesday Music Appreciation class but not enough people signed up for it so it ended up being cancelled. At 6p that evening I was honored with a reception. It was a way to announced to the community that Galveston College finally has a full time music professor. This was followed with the 1st community choir rehearsal of the year. It is a good group and it will fun rehearsing and conducting them during the year.

Tuesday was my Tuesday/Thursday Music Appreciation class at 9:30a. I have 19 students in this class. That is a big for a music class for a college this size. This was followed by the History of Rock class at 11a. This class has about 12 students. I really enjoy teaching and talking about music in a college setting. It is still amazing to me that I blab away about music and people are taking notes on what I say. It is almost surreal.

Wednesday I have the hard drive of the computer in my office taken for a day. It has Microsuck 2000 instead of XP. Since the school is networked with XP they needed install it on my computer.

Thursday I have my Music Appreciation class and History of Rock class, same time as on Tuesday. I also have a Music Application class from 6-9p every Thursday once a week.

During the week between teaching classes, DD went around the island and explored. He went to the Train Museum and walked around the History Downtown. Also during this week when I was not teaching classes we moved around the heavy boxes and furniture around or upstairs. By Friday we had finished with the heavy stuff.

Posted by Eric at 4:14 PM

Saturday, August 28, 2004

A Break in the Storm

For the 1st time since I came here, I finally have time to sit and think of the dramatic change that has happened in my life. I am still happy with my decision to move here and the gig I was offered at Galveston College. This week I have been really busy trying to get prepared to teach next week. On Tuesday, I finally had electricity turned on at my apartment so I now have lights and air conditioning. Back in the Bay Area, having air conditioning would be kind of stupid since all I had to do is open the window and cool air would cool the apartment. Now here, you open the window you get wind, but you also get wet heat. So you really need air conditioning. When you are outside your 1st thought is going to a place were there is air conditioning like a building or your car.
Now to the chaos at work. 1st of all, the school is remodeling many of the classrooms and the library during the summer so a lot of the attention has been on that. But that does not help a 1st year teacher's problems or concerns. I did not found out where the choral music is until Thursday and I did not get the keys to my office until Friday. Between pushing the system to get my key request through, I had to work registration hours every day. It is part of our contract. My job was to give out the parking stickers and help with the ID's. The staff member, Robert who was taking the ID pictures, is really cool and we have a great rapport. He might actually turn into my 1st friend in Galveston. I finally had time to finish my syllabus for the music appreciation class on Monday. Now that I have finished one the rest should be easy, just cut and paste and change a few things. DD came this evening and will be staying a week to help me when the movers come on September 2nd.

Posted by Eric at 10:44 PM

Sunday, August 22, 2004

From the Island in the Sun

I slept in late. It was so nice. I went to sign the lease and to see my new home. It was just as I pictured it would be. A nice 2 bedroom, 2 story town home. I spent at least 2 hours in my town home, looking around and getting a feel for my new place. It is a block away from the beach and has a nice looking swimming pool and jacuzzi. I will be in the jacuzzi all the time. The funny thing is that I did not really miss the bay area as much as I thought I would. This place almost feels like I am home. Then went to IHOP (which I have called pancake house since I was little) and then went back to my apartment. My electricity will not be turned on until Tuesday. It somehow takes 5 days to turn on electricity here in Texas. Well off to sleep.

Posted by Eric at 8:22 PM

Saturday, August 21, 2004

My Official Bye to the San Francisco

Yesterday I said bye to my apartment. It was a nice place to live for a year I learned a lot about myself. I then took a shuttle to the San Francisco airport saying bye to things along the way. Said bye to Mt. Tam, to the Corte Madera River, to Sausalito, Tiberon, the Golden Gate Bridge, and San Francisco. I slept during most of the flight to Houston. Got my rental car and started my drive to Galveston. Got to my hotel and crashed on the bed. I had only 6 hours of sleep that last 2 days. So I got some pizza (I was somehow craving it), Watched some Olympics and slept.

Posted by Eric at 8:18 PM

Friday, August 20, 2004

Moving Day

I got very little sleep last night. I got maybe 3 hours. I was just to anxious about the movers coming. They came at a little after 9a and started right into it. They were nice guys. One was from Houston, Texas and the other from Tennessee. (Interesting isn't it.) They finished at about 3p. It took awhile considering I do not have much furniture. It guess it took longer because I am on the 2nd floor with stairs not an elevator and it is an apartment not a house so it is a little farther to carry stuff to the truck. Since I am the 1st to be loaded onto the truck, I will be the last to unload. The driver has a few more stops and will not even leave California until the 24th. So I will not get my stuff until September 2nd. Now normally people can deal with that but I have an in-service on the 23rd and I start teaching on the 30th without my stuff in my apartment.

I then took my car to Bon Air Shopping to met the car carrier. The driver lives in Houston, Texas. (Do you see a pattern her?) I was getting hungry and with an empty apartment and no car I was going to eat at Chevy's (walking distance from my apartment). When I arrived at Chevy's, the manager was turning people away saying they are closed. Closed? It is only 7p. I then heard a high school kid tell her friend, "that's OK, I do not have to order water." Hum. So that was out of the question so I went to Mollie Stones grocery store's deli and got some fried chicken and pesto pasta. Then walked back to my apartment. Alone in my empty apartment. It's funny. A year ago I probably would have felt sad and lonely but since I have been pretty alone since I moved up here, I have become use to being by myself. I am also going to be in a really good gig in a few days. Well this is my last day and night in Marin County. It has been interesting and I have seen a lot while living here. I have seen almost everything I wanted to see. Ya the gig here did not work out but it allowed me to experience San Francisco and it was the path I had to take to be offered a really cool gig. My next entry will be in Galveston, Texas.

Posted by Eric at 8:10 PM

Thursday, August 19, 2004

Saying Bye

I took a break from packing nice brown boxes to say bye to the Pacific Ocean. I went to China Camp State Beach which is next to San Rafael. I had not driven through that area before and wanted to see one last new area before leaving to my new home. It is a really pretty area. I could see East Bay across the water. I saw a tree on a very small island just off the coast called Rat Island. I saw meadows with water just beyond it. It was a nice break from packing nice brown boxes. I will post pictures later when I get my computer, as well as the rest of my stuff, delivered to me in Galveston in 2 weeks. Ya, 2 weeks without my stuff. (Long story later.)
Now your are saying, "If your computer is packed, how are you able to write in our web log?" I am using an older laptop that Adam no longer needed. It was nice of him. It is an older and slow but decent computer. At least I have a computer to use. It is an IBM and has a Pentium II with Microsuck Windows 98 on it. It is nice to have at times like these. Back to packing more nice brown boxes.

Posted by Eric at 9:02 PM

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

Thanks for your help

I have not had time to describe my recent exciting adventures here because of the fun of packing my stuff into brown boxes.

On Sunday, my friend Lauri was nice enough to spend the afternoon helping me pack my stuff into those nice brown boxes. Thanks for your help!

On Monday, my friend Jules came to help me pack. We did take a long break from the fun of packing to enjoy San Francisco. She had lived there at one time and she gave me a tour of the city though her eyes. She showed me the Embarcadero Center,


the Financial District, Union Square, Mission Dolores in the Mission District and Haight and Ashbury where she used to live. We went to Treasure Island and saw an incredible view of the city.


We also went to Twin Peaks to see an arial view of how compact and cramped the city looks.


We then went to a Chinese restaurant in Chinatown called The Pot Sticker. The food was really good and we even ordered some pot stickers which were also very good. We then walked around Chinatown and walked into a few stores. The prices in these stores were cheap. I bought 2 real Chinese soup bowls and spoons. I also bought some decorated chop sticks. The soup bowl was only $2 and is probably worth at least $10.

We then went back to my apartment to pack until about 2a. We got up the next morning and packed some more. I really appreciated her taking the time to help me pack my stuff in those brown boxes. I now have almost all of my stuff packed into those nice brown boxes.

Here are a couple of pictures of San Francisco at night from Marin.


Posted by Eric at 11:18 PM

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

Showing a Friend Around Marin

A moving surveyor came today. He give me a moving estimate and tentative moving dates. Let the moving fun begin.

Then my friend Silvia from the Santa Anita (near LA County) came through town. We had lunch at Chevy's. I like their food and their Blue Aguave margarita. I then took her for a walk on the Corta Madera River. I then took her to the Headlands. Now at any other time during the year you could see the entire bay. Well it is summer time and in the summer there is fog. Still nice though.

It was getting late and she wanted to check into her hotel. We then walked to an Italian restaurant called Louisa's in Pacific Heights. Really good food. We stayed until they closed talking. We later had a really cool conversation with our waitress for at least an hour after it closed. She was also really cute. Ya I know. I then walked Silvia back to her hotel and headed back to my apartment. We said bye and off she went back to her hotel. It was a nice distraction from the chaos of moving.

Posted by Eric at 11:14 PM

Sunday, August 8, 2004

Viewing the Bay

Mom and I went with my friend Lauri to a really nice restaurant in Sausalito. We sat right above the water while eating great food and watching the view of Sausalito Bay.

I then took mom to the Highlands watching the fog engulf the Golden Gate Bridge. It was then Mom's time to fly back home. It was really nice spending time and traveling with her.

Posted by Eric at 11:38 PM

Saturday, August 7, 2004

High Above Marin County

I took Mom around to see some of the sights in Marin County. We went up to Mt. Tam to show Mom the amazing sight from up there.

We then went to Muir Woods and walked around among the redwoods.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Friday, August 6, 2004

The Crescent City Lighthouse

We went to the Crescent City Lighthouse on Battery Point.


We could not go to the lighthouse yesterday because the trail that leads to the lighthouse was covered by water during high tide.

What a great lighthouse. We took the tour and had the opportunity to walk around the lighthouse and even got to go up to the lantern room on top of the lighthouse and stand next to the Fresnel Lens. What a view.

We then went up to Point St. George

to see the Point St. George Reef Lighthouse in the distance.


We then started our way back home down the 101. Took a look at Crescent City at a view point

and stopped at Trees of Mystery to buy a miniature of the Point St. George Reef Lighthouse. We also looked at the Native American Museum that we did not see the 1st time when we were there on Thursday.

We continued on down the 101 and saw 3 Roosevelt Elks in the Redwood National Park.

We took a detour though the Avenue of the Giants. An amazing road that goes right through the forest.

We finally made it home. That was a long drive.

Posted by Eric at 11:58 PM

Thursday, August 5, 2004

The Drive to Crescent City

We took a bridge from Eureka to Woodley Island.

While there we saw the Table Bluff Lighthouse

accompanied by pretty scenery.

Then crossed another bridge to Samoa located on a peninsula.

We then traveled north on the 255, merged with the 101 and continued up to Trinidad to see the Trinidad Lighthouse. It is a replica of the Trinidad Head Lighthouse.

Combined with a nice view of the bay.


We also saw a really cute church called The Holy Trinity Catholic Church. It looks exactly like something one would put in a village under the Christmas Tree.

continued up to the Trees of Mystery.

While there we walked on a trail through unusual redwood trees like the Cathedral Tree

We then took the Sky Trail over the trees.

It was like we were one of the redwoods enjoying the view of the ocean.

It went up to an observation point where through binoculars I could see an osprey and its nest on top of a tall redwood tree.

(A detailed osprey site)

We continued up on the 101 to Crescent City. We checked in at the Anchor Beach Inn. When we walked into the room and for a second we thought it was a big picture of a beach on the wall. Instead it was the window.

What a sight.

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Wednesday, August 4, 2004

An Evening in Eureka

We made a straight shot up the 101 to Eureka. Dropped off our stuff in the hotel and then walked through the historic downtown. We stopped at the boardwalk.

We then ate at Mazzotti's. It was really good Italian food. Mom said its like a hole in the wall right out of Italy. Then back to the hotel.

Posted by Eric at 11:50 PM

Tuesday, August 3, 2004

Santa Cruz and Pigeon Point Lighthouse

At 4a Mom and I started up on the Interstate 5. This is way too early to get up and drive but it is the only way to avoid the massive amount of "going to work" traffic. There are only 2 ways to get out of LA. They are the I-5 over the Grapevine (The Santa Ynez Mountains) and the Highway 101 along the coast. The 101 is a long drive to get to San Francisco so we to the 5 up to Los Banos. We then went west on Highway 152 toward the ocean to check out the lighthouses. We stopped in Santa Cruz to see the Santa Cruz Lighthouse.

What a nice looking lighthouse. Mom said it looks like a toy. The area around the lighthouse is really nice and has a park like atmosphere.


Then up PCH (highway 1) to Pigeon Point Lighthouse


It looks just like the Yaquina Head Lighthouse in Newport, Oregon.

The lighthouse is deteriorating but it is in the process of being restored. The point view is amazing.

Then up the Golden Gate to my apartment to rest for the drive up the coast tomorrow.

Posted by Eric at 11:52 PM

Monday, August 2, 2004

Another Day with My Brother

Today I had another chance to hang out with Adam for a few hours after he taught his class. We all 3 hung out when JK came home from teaching. We then met DD and Mom at Acapulco for dinner. Said my final bye to DD and went to AD and JK's for a few hours. Said my final bye to AD and JK before leaving and going to bed and ending a really incredible birthday trip.

Posted by Eric at 11:46 PM

Sunday, August 1, 2004

The Traditional Family Birthday Lunch

My birthday weekend continues with the traditional family birthday lunch. We go out as a family whenever someone has a birthday or on a holiday like Independence Day. Today we went to Macaroni Grill in Rossmoor. The food there is good and we all really like their bread. After lunch we had tiramisu cake with candles that I blew out.

I then opened presents. I received some really nice presents from everyone: A new watch from DD, lighthouse chimes from my Aunt Bonnie and Nana and a really cool moving picture of a sunset with a lighthouse.

I then went to Bonnie and Nana's to show them pictures of my recent trips. A few hours later my friend Chrissy came and picked me up. We then picked up my friend John and had dinner at Hof's Hut. Chrissy paid for my dinner for my birthday. Thanks. We then went to one of my favorite places in Long Beach, The Reef. From here we sat on a bench and talked while watching Long Beach across the harbor. A nice way to end of my birthday weekend.

Posted by Eric at 11:16 PM

Saturday, July 31, 2004

Family, Friends and Laughter

My birthday weekend continues with a gathering of my friends at BJ's in Cerritos for lunch. My friends, Kimberly, Dave, Stephen and John, took the time out of their day to spend hanging out with me for my birthday. It was a lot of fun catching up and laughing.

In the evening, my family (AD, JK, DD and Mom) and my friend Dave went to The Comedy and Magic Club in Hermosa Beach for The Comedy and Magic Club's 26th Birthday Bash. It is when there are 20 comedians that perform in one night. It was a really good show and it was really funny. When you have a birthday there you get a balloon filled with confetti popped over your head with an announcement to the audience and a great tasting sundae. Thanks to DD and AD for making that happen.

Posted by Eric at 11:30 PM

Friday, July 30, 2004

Hey! It's My Birthday

I got up around 10a and Adam and I got right into it. We played our music for each other and talked about many things. It was nice to spend a day with my brother.

At around 6p I went with DD to the Spaghetti Station for dinner and then went dancing. I even got to dance West Coast Swing and Hustle with a fun and great dancer. It was a great way to end the day on my birthday.


Posted by Eric at 11:04 PM

Thursday, July 29, 2004

Coming Back Home

Today I flew down to Long Beach. The place were I grew up and will always be and feel like home no matter where I live. DD picked me up from the airport at about 8:30p. We met my friend John for dinner at Hof's Hut. DD then dropped me off at my brother Adam's apartment where he let me stay the night so we could spend more time with each other.

Posted by Eric at 10:23 PM

Saturday, July 24, 2004

Back to the Bay

For breakfast/lunch we went to The Strand and ate at Mod. It is a nice cafe. We both got a wrap which were very good. Then proceeded off the island on the I45 to the Hobby Airport. DD went to his flight to Long Beach at 5:35p and I left for Oakland at 6p. I had a stop in Albuquerque, New Mexico. The same kind of stop I had in Phoenix on the 21st.

Then off to Oakland. Here is a view from the airplane.

Posted by Eric at 11:48 PM

Friday, July 23, 2004

Exploring the Islands

We ate breakfast/lunch at pancake house and then headed north to check out Tiki Island. All I could think of while driving on the island was blue notes.gif"In the tiki, tiki, tiki, tiki room." blue notes.gif
While there we saw houses along the water that were raised on stilts and a balcony over the water. Underneath the balcony were boats raised up above the water.

A view of Galveston Island from Tiki Island.

From Tiki Island we went to Pelican Island. On this island is the ocean oriented branch campus of Texas A & M University. We then went back to Galveston Island and headed west Seawall Boulevard,

passing though Jamaica Beach, over the San Luis Pass and stopped at Surfside Beach.

We took a walk out on the jetty. The coast wind was still warm and humid, but it was a nice view.

We then drove up to Houston. DD said, "It looks just like LA."
On our way back we saw a very unusual car. The driver was sitting way high up over the car.

Then back to Galveston to eat at Fish Tales Seafood Grill.

Posted by Eric at 11:48 PM

Thursday, July 22, 2004

The Interview

I am here in Texas for the music professor position at Galveston College.


My interview began at 9a with a tour of Galveston Island followed by a tour of the Galveston College campus. I then went with the search committee to The Sunflower Cafe for lunch. I got along with the committee really well. Then back to the college for my teaching demonstration. My presentation was an introduction to minimalism introducing the composers of Le Monte Young, Terry Riley, Steve Reich, Philip Glass and John Adams. After my presentation I asked the committee some questions and that was the end of the interview. I called DD to come pick me up since he had the car. He had used the car to cruise around the island while I was in the interview. I hung out in their bookstore until DD called to say he was there. I walked out to the car I heard a voice call my name. I turned around and it was the chair of the search committee. She had seen me walk to the car and caught me before I got in. She then told me I was their 1st choice and offered me the position.

Well I guess I am going to live in Galveston, Texas.

We drove to the east part of the island to East Beach at Apffel Park. A nice green area with lots of birds.


We then took the ferry to the Bolivar Peninsula and took highway 58 to Louisiana. A view of Galveston Island from the ferry.

A view of the Mainland from the ferry.

We at Pelican Palace on old Highway 90 in Vinton, Louisiana. Good food with accent included. Then drove back to the ferry to go back to Galveston. It was midnight when we arrived at the ferry and the temperature was 82 degrees plus being humid. We stood on the front of the ship, when we were sailing across, in shorts and a tee shirt. There is no way we could have done that back in Long Beach, CA at midnight during the summer. Then went back to the hotel. What a day.
Posted by Eric at 11:46 PM

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Off to Texas

I had to get up way to early. 4a is about the time I tend to go to bed when I am immersed in composing. My shuttle arrived to take me to the Oakland Airport. I flew Southwest to the Hobby Airport in Houston, Texas making a stop in Phoenix. It was a stop not a flight change. People going to Phoenix deplaned while those of us going to Houston stayed on the plane. We waited about 10 minutes and then people from Phoenix going to Houston "planed." (Hey, it could be a word.) DD came from Long Beach to meet up with me in Houston. We drove the I45 to Galveston Island. We ate at an OK Italian buffet place and then back to the Hotel.

Posted by Eric at 11:44 PM

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Angel Island

Today I went with my friend Lauri to Angel Island which is 10 minutes away from Tiberon by ferry. While on the ferry we had a nice view of the bay and the Golden Gate.

We arrived on the island and began the 4 mile walk around the island. We walked clock wise around the island. We could see a nice view of east bay.

We stopped at this table to relax and eat a lunch that she had packed. A turkey sandwich, carrots and chocolate cookies.

The new immigration facilities opened on Angel Island in 1910 to replace the old cramped quarters on a San Francisco pier. Most of the immigrants were from China. Here is the Immigration Station.

Continuing around the island we could see Fort McDowell located on Quarry Point.

We then stopped at Quarry Beach to view the bay.

I walked out on this.

To see this. While I was standing there it actually felt like I was standing on the water.

Continuing on around the island, we say a view of Point Blunt. The US Coast Guard is located there.

Here is the Golden Gate Bridge viewed from Angel Island.

With concern mounting over threats to the Bay Area from Confederate sympathizers and naval forces, the federal government established Camp Reynolds.
Here is a view of Camp Reynolds.

Here is a view of the bay. Tiberon is on the right. Sausalito is on the left. Mt. Tam is in the distance.

Posted by Eric at 11:20 PM

Sunday, July 11, 2004

Tomales and Bodega Bay

This weekend's exciting adventure began with driving west on Sir Francis Drake to the city Point Reyes Station and then up PCH (highway 1) to end of the Tomales Bay at Willow Point.

During the summer it is always foggy in the bay area but it did not stop me from having fun. I still took many stops on the way up. Here is a view of Hog Island which is in Tomales Bay.

Here is a view of Preston Point with the Keyes Creek moving toward Tomales Bay.

Here is a farm view on the east side of PCH on the way to Bodega Bay.
"We've got cows!"

A panoramic view of Bodega Bay.

A view of the fog over the Pacific Ocean.

A view of the coast at Bodega Head.

I then continued north on PCH to Salmon Creek.

Just north of Salmon Creek is a view of Salmon Creek Beach.

Just north of Salmon Creek Beach I stopped and got out of the car to view a pretty sunset while the music of A. C. Sharp was playing out of my car.
It was a perfect soundtrack to a perfect sunset.

Posted by Eric at 10:58 PM

Monday, July 5, 2004

Fireworks on the Ocean

Yesterday I was invited to a party which was held in a mansion in Sausalito. We could see the ocean though windows facing the bay. It was also a really nice house. We had food and wine while viewing the water. At 9:15p we watched fireworks from the balcony that were launched off a ship in the ocean. We were pretty close to the fireworks and had a great view of them. They were very pretty. When they exploded, the sound of the explosion bounced off the hills behind the mansion which created a nice effect. What a great way to spend Independence Day.

This is a view of the bay from the bedroom.

Here is a picture of an old style tall ship.

Posted by Eric at 11:18 PM

Wednesday, June 30, 2004

"A" Pancake

We got up and ate at the Red Rock Cafe in Red Bluff. Ordered a cheese omelet which came with a country potatoes and a pancake. There is that "A" pancake again. And it was big. Not as big and the one at Apsen Inn but definitely was as big as the plate. Now were back on the 5 heading home. This as a really fun and relaxing trip.

Posted by Eric at 10:50 PM

Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Rouge River Gorge

We got up and had breakfast in the cafe at the hotel. Today was the 1st day it opened which was great timing. We both had a pancake and eggs (mine scrambled and DD's over easy). Now I wrote "A" pancake. That "a" pancake was huge, about the size of a medium pizza. It was very good. Then drove up to take one last look at Crater Lake since we were only 7 miles from it. Then headed down highway 62. On the way we passed the Rouge River Gorge which was created by lava flow from Mount Manzama, which also created Crater Lake. What an amazing sight.

We also saw along the Rouge River the natural bridge in which the river goes underground for 35 seconds.

We got on the I-5 and up to Grants Pass and took a look around. It looks like a nice town. I actually would not mind living there. Here is something interesting about the city. They had statues of bears all over the city. They were in different poses like eating ice cream, holding a broom and eating a hot dog. We then headed south on I-5 and said goodbye to Oregon. We stopped and eat at Grandma's House. Not actually my grandma's house but a restaurant in Yreka with really good food. We continued heading south on the I-5 and passed Mount Shasta. What a great mountain. Almost like it is keeping watch over the town below.

We are now in Redding for the night. Took a dip in the spa and now it is time for bed. Goodnite.

Posted by Eric at 11:08 PM

Monday, June 28, 2004

Salt Creek Falls and Crater Lake

Leaving Springfield, DD and I started the day driving around Eugene while I pointed out some sights around town. While there I saw people with name tags walking from the University of Oregon to the Unversity Inn. I realized that they were singers, composers and conductors in the Oregon Bach Festival. I could tell who the composers were, they are easy to spot. I flashed back to the times I had made that walk when I was in the Bach Festival for 2 years. Those were great memories.

We then drove south on highway 58 to Lowell. While there we saw a couple of covered bridges.

Then continued on the 58 to Salt Creek Falls. It is the 2nd tallest waterfall in Oregon with a high of 286 feet. Multnomah Falls it the tallest in Oregon. Salt Creek Falls is such a great waterfall. It is one of my favorites. We walked down a trail to get a better look at it.

Continuing on highway 58 to 97 to 138 we reach Crater Lake, the deepest lake in the United States. What an incredible sight. The water is so blue. There was still snow on the ground which created a soft white landscape contrasted by the green trees.

Even though I had been here before, it did not lessen the impact of seeing this incredible lake. DD had not seen it before and was impressed by it. We drove around the rim on the west side of Crater Lake. The road on the eastern side was closed due to snow still on the ground that had not been plowed yet. We stopped at all of the turn offs to see different sides of the lake including Wizard Island.

Since it was around 4p, bugs were out wanting to feed. So every time I stepped out to take a picture, within a few seconds I was surrounded by bugs. We stopped at the Rim Village to eat. We ate at the Watchman Restaurant were we had a buffet while viewing Crater Lake though a big window. After dinner we stopped by the Historic Crater Lake Lodge to view the lake while sitting on rocking chairs. That was so cool. By the time we left the sun was setting.

We left the park to head to the city of Klamath Falls to get a hotel when on the way down we found the Aspen Inn in Fort Klamath. We got the A shaped cabin, cabin #6 (my favorite number). DD really liked the cabin.

Well off to bed. We have more exciting adventures tomorrow that was have to encounter.

Posted by Eric at 11:54 PM

Sunday, June 27, 2004

Silver Falls

Today DD and I drove up to Silver Falls State Park which is east of Salem. This park has 10 waterfalls. We only saw 4 which were Upper North Falls, North Falls, Winter Falls and South Falls.

Upper North Falls



Behind North Falls

Winter Falls




We then went to Salem for dinner but since it was 9p it appeared that everything was closed or as DD said, "They rolled up the streets." We happened to find one place open called the Coffee House Cafe. We both got a tuna sandwich on a bagel with a side of pesto pasta. DD got tea and I got a vanilla Italian Soda. Everything we ordered tasted great as if it came from a high class expensive cafe. This place seems to be popular for the college students in the area including some really cute girls. Then we drove back to Springfield for the last day in the hotel.

Posted by Eric at 11:15 PM

Thursday, June 24, 2004

Driving Up the 5

Today Jules, DD and I drove up the I-5 from Sacramento to Eugene, Oregon for David's wedding. It was very fun driving up with them. Jules and I took pictures on the way up including Mt. Shasta. What an incredible sight. Arrived in Eugene in time to have dinner with David and Julia's friends and family.

Posted by Eric at 12:50 AM

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Alpine Lake

Today I took a trip to the top of Mt. Tamalpais or as they call it here, Mt. Tam. I have been up there before and wanted to see it again.
A View from Mt. Tam

It is a great view from up there. From the top of Mt. Tam I could see all of Marin County, the Bay, the City and the Richmond and Bay Bridge.

I then took a different road down the mountain.

I wanted to see Alpine Lake again.

It was so quiet and peaceful there. I walked a trail I had not taken before. The trail took me over a small but nice bridge.

The trail lead me to a waterfall which feeds the lake. It was not a big waterfall but a bunch of small ones falling over the rocks.

The trail kept going but decided to head back since it was getting late. One of the sights I saw on the walk back was some plants peeking out of the water.

Before leaving the lake I did enjoy the moon hovering over the trees. It was a great sight.

Posted by Eric at 11:52 PM

Saturday, May 8, 2004

A Nice Walk

Today I decided to take a walk along the Corte Madera River that I can see from my apartment. I took the trail that follows the river to the College of Marin. That hike is about a mile walk one way. Great scenery while enjoying the outside air.
Here is a sample of what I saw.



Posted by Eric at 11:45 PM

A Perfect Night Out

Yesterday I was invited to dinner and concert in the city of Cotati which is north of Marin County. The restaurant was Sweet Lou's Trattoria. The decor of this place is original, whacked and a lot of fun. For an example, inside the men's bathroom has a pair of congas you can play, as well as a scuba mask on the wall, flippers attached to the legs of the sink and a cymbal on the wall. The women's bathroom has an electric organ. The food was great. As an appetizer we had pesto fries which were really good. I had angel hair pasta which includes fresh chopped tomatoes, garlic, basil and olive oil. My friend happens to know the family who owns and runs the restaurant. So with that connection came special treatment. Before the band started playing , we moved from our dinner table to a nice soft couch directly in front of the band that was reserved just for us.

The Winard Harper Sextet was incredible. Great musicians. The music was jazz with a shot of African Drumming mixed in. The leader and drummer is Winard Harper. He made the drums sound like a musical instrument instead of something that keeps time and makes noise during the solos. He enhanced the solos of the other players without putting attention to himself. That only happened when he soloed which was unique, fun and musical. Other member of the band are Patrick Rickman on trumpet, Brian Horton on sax, Jeb Patton on piano, Ameen Saleem on bass and Alioune Faye on djembe. There set had a nice variety from straight jazz playing Corner Pocket to a tune shifting seamlessly from jazz, latin and rock flavor. They also played a tune beginning with the bafalon, an African marimba, and djembe. They were having fun and being silly while really listening to each other and playing as one. I even got all of their autographs. What a great evening.

Posted by Eric at 11:15 PM

Sunday, May 2, 2004

The Point Bonita and East Brother Lighthouse

The adventure today began with a short 1/2 mile hike to the Point Bonita Lighthouse.

During the hike, the trail led me into a tunnel cut through the rock.

The trail ended at the Point Bonita Lighthouse with its original second order Fresnel lens still in the tower and is still in operation.

To get to the lighthouse I walked over a suspension bridge in which only 5 people can walk across it at a time.

The Point Bonita Lighthouse.

The lighthouse is now automated using this light bulb.

The Point Bonita coast line.

A view of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge from Point Bonita.

Point Bonita and the lighthouse.

I then drove over the Richmond Bridge to east bay to get to Point San Pablo.

Out into the bay from Point San Pablo is the East Brother Lighthouse.

The lighthouse is currently a bed and breakfast and the proceeds go to preserve the station. For more info about these 2 lighthouses click on these links.
Point Bonita lighthouse
East Brother Lighthouse

Posted by Eric at 11:52 PM

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Learning A Little Bit About Myself

I originally went out to take a picture of Happy Lane. Yup. In the City of San Rafael, Sun Valley Elementary School is on Happy Lane. I cracked up when I heard about it.

I then continued on 5th street, which crosses Happy Lane, and the street dead ended at Mt. Tam Cemetery. So I drove in. I drove around and up a hill. Got out and looked around at the graves and the Crayon Hills over looking the cemetery. I had gone out for a drive to mull over my problems and somehow ended up here. I realized that whatever I am going through, it can't be that bad. I know a Babylon 5 reference. To quote B5 again, "I am alive. Everything else is negotiable."

I drove out of the cemetery turned right and ran into Sir Francis Drake Blvd. I know this street goes all the way to the coast so I turned right on to it passing the town of San Anselmo, Ross and Fairfax and then noticed a place called

I was curious and decided to go in. A really nice area.

There were a few people painting the incredible scenery. I found a trail.

Started walking up this trail to see where is ends up. About a 1/2 hour later I stopped to take a break. I had been walking up hill this whole time with the wrong kind of shoes. I was getting hungry and thought I should go back, but there was this part of me that really wanted to see where this trail went even though it might be awhile before I found the end of the trail and it probably would get dark before I got back . In those moments I rediscovered something about myself. When there is something I want to do or see the end result of, I want to keep going even though it might be a bad idea. Having this drive is good when I have a project to do but not good when I do something that might get me in trouble regardless of my good intentions. I have to know when is a good time to have this drive and when it is not.

Just when I started to head down I happened to look up and I could see San Francisco in the distance. I was too busy looking at my feet walking up the trail to notice it before. (Ya I know symbolism and metaphor.)

A progressive close up on the city.

So down and home I went. I was surprisingly calm all the way home even with a lot of cars on the road. What an enlightening day.

Posted by Eric at 11:15 PM

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Finally Home

Had the 2nd of the 2 day interview yesterday. I think is also went well. Did my presentation and also got to work with the University Choir. It is a really good choir and it was a joy to rehearse them. Then back down to Fargo to fly home. So the flight home was to be from Fargo to Chicago to San Francisco. Well the problem was that Chicago was experiencing a major thunderstorm so my flight into there was delayed. It ended up being so delayed that I would have missed my connecting flight in Chicago and that was the only flight that would take me to San Francisco that evening. So the airline got me a deal at a Best Western so off I went. Got some sleep. Got up way to early in order to catch the Fargo-Denver-San Francisco flight. It is a much shorter flight. I could not get this flight yesterday because the last Fargo to Denver flight is around 3p. I was so tired I slept on both flights all the way home.

Main Street

          The City of Mayville

Posted by Eric at 9:18 PM

Monday, April 19, 2004

The University

Oh, Mayville has only 8 restaurants and only about 2,000 people live there. It is a tiny town which their motto is "The way America is supposed to be."

The City of Mayville

Had the 1st of the 2 day interview. I think it went well. Met with the President of the university, VP of Academic Affairs and someone in the Business Office. The University only has about 800 students but the school is really high tech.

Mayville State University

While going to school or working there, every student and faculty is given the latest laptop to use. The students and people there are really nice. Not just nice but really polite. The main red brick building was build in 1889. It looks really cool.

I was taken on a tour of the school and a tour around town. There is only one street light in the whole town and it is on main street. Then to the dinner-interview with the search committee members. We had a great conversation and I think it went well.

Posted by Eric at 8:14 PM

Sunday, April 18, 2004

Off to Mayville

This weekend adventure took me to this really tiny town of Mayville, North Dakota. Well, the only way to get to Mayville is to fly into Fargo. So I flew from San Francisco to Denver then to Denver to Fargo. While flying on the Boeing 777 into Denver 20 minutes before landing, we experienced major turbulence. Now I never have problems physically while flying. I always sleep on airplanes (makes the long flight go faster). This time, major turbulence with very little food in tummy, and the plane being unusually warm, I did not feel good and just wanted the plane to land. Landed in Denver and just had enough time to get a blueberry muffin before having to get on the plane to Fargo. Had to eat it on the plane. The flight to Fargo is in a much smaller plane than the Boeing 777. We also hit major turbulence but with something in my tummy I was ok. Landed in a small airport the size of Long Beach Airport and then drove up to Mayville. The speed limit is 75. That was so cool. Checked into the hotel and crashed.

Posted by Eric at 10:28 PM

Friday, April 16, 2004

Walking the Golden Gate Bridge

DD and I drove to the Vista Point before the Golden Gate Bridge. We then walked from the Marin side across the Golden Gate Bridge to San Francisco. It took an hour to walk across. What a great view of The City and Alcatraz Island. Hanging out for a bit before walking back across the bridge. It was quite windy. Also saw a large variety of boats go under the bridge. After walking across back to Marin we walked up this hill to see a "bird's eye" view of the Golden Gate Bridge. What an great day and an amazing view. Click on the pictures below to see what I saw.

The Golden Gate Bridge seen from Tiberon.

The Golden Gate Bridge from the Marin side.

The Bridge.

The Golden Gate Bridge from the San Francisco side.

What an incredible sight.

Posted by Eric at 11:50 PM

Thursday, April 15, 2004

Hanging Out in the City

Today DD and I went to the Golden Gate Park in San Francisco. We took a look at Ocean Beach watching the surfer's freezing their butts off.

Then to the North Dutch Windmill built in 1902. Really nice with a flower garden next to it called Queen Wilhelmina Garden. There were a variety of flowers and colors.

Then took a quick look at the bison at Buffalo Paddok

before making a quick stop at Lloyd Lake where two columns once graced the porch of a Nob Hill home, and were all that remained after the 1906 earthquake.

Then to Stow Lake where Strawberry Hill, and artificial island, is at the center of the lake. On Strawberry Hill is Huntington Falls. A nice size waterfall. We walked up to the top of the falls walking across 3 bridges that cross in front of the falls.

Walked over the Hill and over the Roman bridge we then walked around the Lake. Then to the Japanese Tea Garden. What a nice and peaceful place.

Took a quick look at the Conservatory of Flowers before heading to The Presidio to take a look a the Golden Gate Bridge. We then went to Fisherman's Wharf for dinner. We ate at Fisherman's Grotto and had a great tasting bowl of New England Clam Chowder. I also had Halibut Linguini and DD had a Crab and Lobster Salad. Great tasting fish. Then drove around the city through Market Street and then home.

Posted by Eric at 11:42 PM

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

DD's Coming to Town

DD (my dad) came up from the LA area to visit little old me on Tuesday. We stayed up until 3a talking (that is way past his bed time). Today I took him to Mt. Tam. It was a cloudy day so we could not see "the city" up there but I did show him the outdoor theater. I then took him to Muir Woods. He really liked Muir woods. He said it was cool. We then came home and took a nap (too much hiking I guess). After the nap we went to a great Chinese restaurant called Yet Wah in San Rafael for dinner. Really good food. My fortune was "Be tactful; overlook not your own opportunity." Interesting huh?

Posted by Eric at 11:58 PM

Sunday, April 11, 2004

A Great Way to Spend Easter Sunday

A friend of mine that I know from the jazz a cappella choir I sing in invited me to an Easter picnic out on Mt. Tam. It is a family gathering which started over 20 years ago. Even though I was not part of their family, they made me feel right at home. A real nice group of people (which was about 30 to 40 of them). I ate chicken (yum) and some other stuff I had know idea what it was but I tried it anyway. It was good though.

We walked from our picnic site to the edge of Mt Tam. I could see the fog racing in. Unlike the fog I am used to in Southern Cal which comes in slowly, stays awhile then burns off, the fog here comes in really fast from the ocean. You can see it race in over the city of San Francisco and Southern Marin.

Within minutes, the mountain is surrounded by "cotton."

We walked back and the kids hunted for Easter eggs. I was being taught by one of the family members how to play with the Chinese Yo Yo. I picked it up pretty quickly and was even able to throw it up and catch it.

I arrived at the picnic sometime after 1p and left at about 5p. Instead of going back down the mountain the way I usually come up, I kept going north to see where this road went. During my drive I encountered a really pretty lake.

I then encountered and drove over the dam that creates the lake.

I got out of my car and just stood there enjoying the silence and the smells. Then kept going down, making a few more stops to check out the scenery. I even saw a couple of deer right off the side of the road eating.

The road led into the town of Fairfax and headed home.

What a great way to enjoy Easter. Enjoying friendly people, good conversation and enjoying the scenery of God's creation.

Happy Jesus Rising Day.


Posted by Eric at 11:50 PM

Sunday, March 28, 2004

Muir Woods

Today my "Weekend Adventures" took me to Muir Woods. An incredible area filled with redwoods and with the Redwood Creek flowing though Redwood Canyon. The 560 acre park includes 6 miles of trails. Unpaved trails out of the canyon connect with trails in Mt. Tamalpais State Park. I took the 2 mile loop hike. It was a very nice walk with the talking creek as my soundtrack. I of course took pictures. Two of my best are below. The rest I put in My Photo Gallery. Can you hear the creek?

Posted by Eric at 11:43 PM

Saturday, March 27, 2004

A Bridge at Night

I took a drive to east San Rafael and saw a great view of the San Rafael Bridge and in the distance behind it was the Bay Bridge. It was just past sunset and I had to take pictures of this incredible view. I took a series of pictures with different apertures and shutter speeds. Each picture has different feel and atmosphere.
Here are a couple of nice shots.

The rest are in My Photo Gallery.

Posted by Eric at 11:45 PM

Sunday, March 21, 2004

The Journey Home

My dad had asked before I came down if I would sing with his church choir. It seems like something he wanted me to do and to me it seemed like it had some meaning to him for me to be there. My dad, which I call DD (a story for a later time) will do almost anything I ask him to do and hardly ever asks for anything. So when he asks for something it usually is something he really wants. So I agreed and I went. The music was pretty easy. I sight read most of it and the rest I had sung before. Then back to DD's apt for a goodbye to my family and send off for the journey home. Half the trip was spend talking on the phone to our good friend David so he would not feel left out of our exciting road trip. Of course he was enjoying it at home were he can walk around while we were stuck in a car for over 7 hours. One of which was trying to get out of LA. It seems like every time I go back there the traffic gets worse and worse. I got home between 9 and 10p, got ready for bed and crashed. I did not get up until 12 hours later.
Here are a couple of pictures of the grapevine.

Posted by Eric at 11:49 PM

Saturday, March 20, 2004

The Concert

Today was lunch with my Mom's side of the family at Souplantation. This place was (and still is even though I am not down there anymore) a regular hang out for B-Days and holidays. I really like their tuna tarragon, chicken noodle soup and their chocolate pudding (when they have it). Then went back the home I grew up in and played on the piano I grew up with. I sometimes miss my piano. The evening was a concert by azure rising. A group consisting of my brother A. C. (which is his performance name) and his wife Jenn. A great concert. I still really like the sound of Jenn's voice. Then to the Hof's for the post hang out.

Posted by Eric at 11:36 PM

Friday, March 19, 2004

A Day with My Brother

I went out with my only brother, Adam, for lunch. We went to BJ's Pizza in Seal Beach. We were seated by the manager. A server got our drink order, left and came back with our drinks. She then asked if we wanted to order sandwiches since their pizza oven is broken. Adam then said with air quotes, "But this is a pizza place." I died laughing. So we left and decided to walk on the pier before heading to the BJ's in Cerritos. The one in Cerritos is new. It was build before I moved up here a year ago. It still has the 2 things I like about BJ's. The great Chicago style pizza and cute waitresses. The great conversation with Adam during lunch made the trip down worth it. That evening I went to a single dance that was hosted by St. Cyprian's SAM, a group I was in charge of when I lived down there. I ran into a lot of people I had not talked to since I move up here. I also had a lot of fun dancing.

Posted by Eric at 11:29 PM

Thursday, March 18, 2004

Road Trip

This week's "Weekend Adventure" began with the over 7 hour drive to LA. My friend Jules was planning on going down there for business stuff as well a her Spring Equinox party and asked if I wanted to go down with her to keep her company. Since most of my family lives down there and it will give me a change to visit them I said sure. It was a fun trip down. We played music, some of my CD's and some of her's. We both love to talk so there was never a time were neither of us were talking except during a sing along. It was so smoggy that we could not see the mountains of the Grapevine until we were almost in top of them. Getting into LA sucked. We hit "parking lot" on the 405. Since Jules lived in that area and she knows the back roads we exited Santa Monica Blvd and took side streets. We finally got to my Dad's apt and she went on to were he was staying. I was tired and I imagine Jules was even more tired.

Posted by Eric at 11:02 PM

Saturday, March 13, 2004

A View from Mt. Tam

This week's "Weekend Adventure" took me to the top of Mt. Tamalpais or as they call it here, Mt. Tam. A 45 minute drive to the top. I took a small detour and hiked up a short trail to the outdoor theater before driving up to the very top. Shakespeare plays and musicals are performed at this theater during the summer. After viewing the theater I drove up to the very top and parked in the parking lot. I then started my hike up to the very top were the lookout tower is located. It is a rock trail for about .03 miles to the top. Once I got there, what a view. Stayed there for about 2 hours before heading down. Here are some pictures of the view I saw.

Here is a view of San Francisco.

Here is a view of my Apt.

A really nice picture. It was taken facing west toward the ocean.

Posted by Eric at 11:28 PM

Sunday, March 7, 2004

A Nice Day for a Sunday Drive

I went up on the 101 to Novato because I was craving a Carl's Jr. vanilla milkshake and the only Carl's Jr. in all of Marin County is in Novato. (But yet they have 7 Mc Donald's.) After getting the milkshake I kept heading north on the 101. Before entering Petaluma there was a small side street that looked interesting. By now the sun had set and there are no street lights on this side street. I stopped once to take this picture.

Click to enlarge

Looked too cool to pass up. I then continued on "Bob's Road" seeing outlines of the hills against the slowly darkening sky. After about 9 miles I saw a sign pointing at a street that heads towards Novato. So 11 miles later I was back in Novato and headed home.

Posted by Eric at 11:50 PM

Sunday, February 29, 2004

San Rafael Arcangel Mission

Last sunday after eating lunch at a really good Chinese Restaurant called Yet Wah, I decided to go check out the San Rafael Arcangel Mission. I have lived here since August and have driven by it many times but never stopped to see it. The Mission was build in 1817. It was neglected for many years after its use and started disintegrating. Fortunately, years later, and elderly man made sketches of what he could remember of San Rafael Arcangel Mission. The man was General Mariano Vallejo. General Vallejo drew the mission at the request of his friend Edward Visher. The two men, each 70 years old, worked over the details which resulted in the sketch that the mission was rebuild. It was rebuilt in 1949.
Click on the links for more info.
San Rafael Arcangel Mission
San Rafael Mission Tour

Posted by Eric at 5:46 AM