Friday, October 31, 2008

Sunday, October 26, 2008

SUNDAY MORNING ROAD RIDE

We had a great time on a road ride this morning. 23 miles on a
singlespeed didn't hurt anywhere near as much as I thought it would.
Donna, as usual, was all smiles.

HOW DO STARFISH BREATHE?

After checking out this starfish along the coast I had to learn more
about them. Turns out they breath through their feet - you gotta feel
sorry for them. Try sticking your face in your shoes and you'll know
what a starfish feels like.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

ANNIVERSARY: PART III

Ocean kayaking was a whole new thing for both of us and we both
discovered it makes us a little sea sick. The water was dead calm when
we left then tossing us around like crazy by the time we started to
head back. I determined I much prefer river kayaking. Nevertheless it
was a lot of fun and something new for us to experiene together.

ANNIVERSARY: PART II

Sunday night we went out to Dinosaur Park to watch the sun set. Not
only was the sunset spectacular but we got to see about 10,000 pelicans.

Monday, October 20, 2008

ANNIVERSARY: PART I

For our fourth wedding anniversary we've come to Pismo Beach and
managed to find a beautiful place to stay high above the rocky
coastline (top center building).

Saturday, October 18, 2008

SATURDAY HIKE

I've been told this is the highest point in the Santa Monica Mtns.
Fortunately the trail starts well above sea level.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

PINK SKY AT NIGHT

I got out if the office early enough to enjoy about 10 minutes of
daylight during my night ride. Much like the fall season, I wish dusk
could last longer. We've had wildfires burning in the area which has
meant some especially long days, so it felt good to get out and blow
off some steam and get some fresh air.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

STILL EXPLORING OUR BACK YARD

We found a great new park in Ventura that we had never been to before.
It was absolutely beautiful with the ocean on one side and the harbor
on the other. How we never knew of this park before is beyond me but
we plan to return for a picnic and other fun stuff.

A LESSON IN DISCIPLINE

While I chowed down on a double cheeseburger at the Habit (I hike four
hours yesterday and briskly walked 5 miles this morning) Donna limited
herself to a BBQ chicken salad with no dressing.

FALL COLOR

This is about as close as we get to fall color. Go ahead, rub it in,
I'm sure you've got all sorts of reds and yellows all around, but in a
few months when you're tired of old man winter, we'll be basking in
the 70-degree sunshine Southern California is famous for.

SUNDAY MORNING

We had planned to be out on a big bike ride today but the Santa Ana
Winds are here in full force, putting a damper on those plans. So
we're off to a slow start today while Donna sips her coffee while
browsing her favorite part of the newspaper - the coupons.

LITTLE DONNA

Donna's sister sent us this photo of our niece, Maggie, and I can't
believe how much she looks like a little Donna. Donna's eyes started
to water and I could tell she wishes we were closer to them. It's a
shame they live in New Hampshire where the winters are far too harsh
for me, the Texas native.

MY NEW LITTLE FRIEND

I ran across this little guy on today's hike. You wouldn't know it
from the photo but he was tiny - barely bigger than my thumbnail! When
I got the camera so close to him, he tucked in all his legs.

CANYON VIEW

The return trip on Saturday's hike offered this view of the valley
below. The sun reflecting off the river was beautiful.

LOST CLOUDS

These clouds were apparently lost - I can't think of any other reason
why they'd be in Southern California.

BACK TO SCHOOL

I caught this rather magnificent view of St Thomas Aquinas college on
the way back during today's hike. The trail starts beyond the college
but they allow you to walk through the campus to get to the trail, so
long as you stay on the paved road.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

NIGHT RIDE I

I got out of the office in time to catch a pinch of daylight on
tonight's ride. You have to wait for the sun to drop over the horizon,
otherwise a motorist blinded even just for a second while driving into
the sun might clip you and not even know it.

NIGHT RIDE II

Let that sun drop a little too low and the whole night turns into a
blur. I've actually discovered I get a touch of motion sickness from
the windy routes at night. Tonight wasn't too bad.... I tried my best
to take it easy.

NIGHT RIDE III

My road bike is having the rear wheel rebuilt so I took the
singlespeed out tonight. Pushing the hills around here with one gear
will put some hair on your chest. I was too lazy to flip the hub to
the easier of the two freewheels.

NIGHT RIDE IV

There's a long row of palms along the one road that I always enjoy
riding by. This is definately the best time of day to be in this
stretch.

THE FINE PRINT

I saw this sign while I was at lunch today and thought the fine print
was pretty funny, all things considered.

PEACEFUL EVENING WALK

Since Donna has Mondays off we usually have a little time for a walk
before the glow on the horizon fades. I love this time of day and the
palm trees just look great silhouetted against the orange and purple
sky, as does most anything.

HALLOWEEN IS COMING

Some people around here really get excited (and premature) about their
Halloween decorations. Actually it's a real spider that I would have
rather not been so close to, but check out the size of that thing!
Donna, of course, was thrilled.

Monday, October 6, 2008

MISERY LOVES COMPANY

Now my entire hand, not just my middle finger, is swollen from
yesterday's bee sting. The doc said I didn't need to come in unless
"it is bothering me." So define bothering? My middle finger is now
hard as a rock and I'm on a mission to kill every bee in sight.
Vengeance is supposed to be someone else's turf according to a verse I
recall, but my selective memory is blocking it out.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

NEVER ENDING SUNSHINE

We (Southern Californians) snapped back today with blue skies and sunshine following yesterday's weather mishap which dropped almost an entire .20 inches of rain on parts of the county. It was tough but we made it through. Thank goodness things were back to normal today.

BEES, AT THE BEACH?

I felt something crawling on my leg and when I went to swat it I felt a bad pinch on my finger, only to find a stinger sticking out of my middle finger. Donna took great offense when I tried to show it to her. Now my finger is nice and swollen. I found the bee on the ground and being the nice guy that I am, stepped on it and squashed it, so it wouldn't die a slow, miserable death from losing its stinger.

LESS THAN FLATTERING

I discovered that bubble mirrors aren't very flattering - imagine that. They are very fun at least.

SAY CHEESE

After a few miles of asphalt we hit a few miles of dirt, taking us to a small waterfall in Thousand Oaks. It isn't much of a waterfall but in such a dry area you take what you can get.

RIDE TIME

Sunday mornings are a great time for road rides - very little traffic and those who are out and about aren't generally in much of a hurry.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

GLAD THESE THINGS ARE SO TINY














Check out some of even the simplest creatures up close and I gotta say, I'm glad everything roaming the earth is proportioned the way it is. At first it just looked like a fly but up close the metallic appearance made it a little more intimidating. Can you imagine if they were the size of a large bird?

A LITTLE R&R














Donna and I had a nice, quiet Saturday morning before she had the head off to work. I can't remember the last time we sat together in the den by the fireplace (not that it was burning). It was a rare, rainy morning and it felt great to leave the bikes and running shoes where they were while we chilled out for a morning.

AWWW, AIN'T THAT CUTE













I saw these two snails smoochin' on our front walkway this morning. I think they're cool looking. Donna can't stand them.

FRACTIONS OF A SECOND














I'm still amazed at how crashing waves appear when frozen in time. Since living near the ocean I've grown to respect just how powerful it is. There's always a page one story, a few times a year it seems, about someone who didn't have enough respect for the ocean's power and paid the ultimate price.

Mother Nature ONE : Ray ZERO

video
Mother nature really taught me a lesson here. I've heard the saying about never turning your back on the ocean but I was looking right at it! Fortunately I was shooting with a waterproof camera and my rain coat kept my iPhone dry enough to avoid any damage.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

UP CLOSE... VERY CLOSE

I'm still learning more about this waterproof point-and-shoot camera Donna got me for my birthday. As you can see by the photo, I'm discovering how close it can get to objects and still focus. I found this creation in our back yard after getting home from work so I propped it up underneath a spot lamp in our living room and... viola!

STILL GOING STRONG

Donna is still at it, riding her bike to work. I happened to be outside today when she arrived and at that, happened to have a camera in hand to snap a photo. I have yet to embrace the habit and would rather just get out for a ride after I get home from work.