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Overall, I think I'd give the past 8 days a B+.  

* Last Saturday Chris and I went to Sacramento with fallulah71 for the day.  She had two spare tickets to see the musical "Mama Mia" and asked if we wanted to come along.  I'm not really into musicals (or generally any theater for that matter), but a production built around the music of ABBA?  I'm in.  We drove down in the morning and dropped by the Goodwill thrift store outlet downtown.  Apparently they take all the best donations and name brands and put them together in one store, which makes a lot of sense to me.  I walked out with a really great pair of leather shoes by Kenneth Cole for $15 (which I put on and wore for the rest of the day) and Fallulah bought some very pretty silk blouses for cheap.  We wandered around downtown for a bit and then had a really great lunch at PF Chang's before the show.  And the show?  Was awesome.  It was funny and goofy and the music was total ear candy (with not a little eye candy in the cast too).  I'm really glad we got to go.  

*Thursday I had to attend a training in Orland, a small farming town an hour south of Redding, with the rest of the analyst team.  The training center for the entire north state is located here, and I've driven down there about a million times over the years.  The training itself was a complete and utter waste of time.  The computers were ridiculously slow and then no one could access the software we were supposed to be learning how to use.  Also, the instructor was himself only a beginning user, which meant we spent the entire time reading the manual together.  After two (!) hours of trying to get the software to work properly, he told us to go ahead and head to lunch early.  At 10:30.  In the morning.  There's nothing open that early, so the other two guys and I wandered to the auto parts store next door (one of the guys needed oil filters) and then waited for the pizza place to open at 11:00.  We should just have called it a day and headed back to Redding, and I'm still not sure why we didn't just leave.  After "lunch", the software was mostly working, but I struggled greatly with it.  I'm not a stupid man, but this software has always been confusing and frustrating to me and I simply cannot grasp it no matter how hard I try.  I didn't even bother attending Day 2 of the training.

*Friday night the whole family attended my niece Caroline's school play, "Mulan."  All of my nieces and nephews attend the same grade school as my brother and sister and I did, which is pretty cool.  The school was very rural when we went there, but the area has since become very gentrified with very wealthy residents, and consequently the school has gotten very fancy.  The play was like a local Broadway production, but with more screeching voices.  Caroline played a Hun, and I have to say that she would have made a terrible Hun because she kept smiling at us in the audience.  I think soldiers should scowl a lot more, but war does strange things to people, so what do I know?

*After the play was over, I met up with Chris and some friends from work at a local dive bar called the Bell Lounge.  They had karaoke that night, something I would normally avoid, but we had a really great time.  There was one douchey guy dressed all in white with a scarf, wearing sunglasses indoors, and he was pretty entertaining but not for the reasons he thought.  I don't know if the drinks were extra strong or my body chemistry was off, but wow did I get tipsy quickly.  I'm a lightweight anyway, but these drinks really caught up with me before I knew it.  However, I think it's good to blow out the cobwebs once in a while and let my hair down, so I just enjoyed myself.  I didn't sing karaoke (thankfully), but I danced a lot, something I don't really get to do enough anymore.  When it came time to leave, there was no way I was going to be able to drive home, so I hitched a ride with one of the designated drivers and I hope I didn't say or do anything that brings shame to my family.  I also remember now why I don't drink well drinks anymore because that stuff is like poison.  I need top shelf booze, and top shelf only because the cheap stuff will kick my ass faster than anything else in the world. 

*The hangover wasn't much fun, but it was totally worth it.  I had plans to see "The Hunger Games" with my family (everyone has read the books), so my sister dropped by and took me to my car.  I haven't had to do the Walk of Shame in a long time, but that was far more preferable than a DUI.  We got to the movie theater early because this movie is really popular and before long there were at least 100 people in line behind us.  Some people got a little pushy when it came time to open the doors, but I snarled at two different people who tried to be sly and cut in line because I just do not.  Put up.  With.  That shit.  While the story was originally written for the young adult market, I've read the books and they're quite good.  The audience was a surprising mix of young and old, male and female.  And the movie itself was fantastic.  The acting was really solid, with a few moments of pretty heavy emotion, and I think the director made some good choices for casting and which parts of the story could be left out.  After the movie we all went out to lunch and then I said goodbye to my niece Kathleen who was home from college for the week.  She's headed back to Cal Poly today and her new quarter begins tomorrow.  I can't believe my baby girl is almost through her first year of college already.  *sniff*

*After lunch I made the mistake of going to Walmart to pick up a few things.  Walmart on a Saturday with a hangover is one of the worst places to go, but I HAD to pick up a few things and couldn't really put it off.  I survived, but just barely.  I needed new windshield wiper blades because it's been raining pretty hard for the past few days and my old blades didn't exactly give me much warning before they literally came apart all at once.  Once I got home from that horror, I crashed and slept for a couple of hours and woke up feeling much better.  The rest of the evening was quiet and while Chris and I were supposed to go out with some friends to listen to a band, he was pretty sick (not caused by the drinking) so we cancelled.  I was in bed and asleep before 9:30 anyway, so I'm not sure I would have been much if we had gone out.

*Today it's gray and wet and cold and I think I'll get caught up with some reading or puttering around the house or I might even get ambitious and replace my wiper blades.  So many possibilities.

If there are any misspellings or bizarre syntax, it's because I'm feeling too lazy to reread and edit this post.  

I hope all is well where you are.  Go have some ice cream, it'll help. 


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Mar. 25th, 2012 09:30 pm (UTC)
Other than the useless training, this post is made of yay! Well, not the hangover, though you said it was worth it :-) And not Walmart. But dancing? Movies? Mulan? Family? All made of YAY!

I went to Mamma Mia in Philly, didn't know what to expect, ended up dancing like a maniac and singing along and I *never* do that. It was cheesy and way fun :-)

Here's to more weekends of yay, minus the few boos!
Mar. 25th, 2012 09:42 pm (UTC)
Useless trainings are useless. And if the price of having fun and laughing and dancing was a headache and being tired the next day, I gladly paid.

I wasn't quite sure what to expect of "Mama Mia" either, and when they played "Waterloo" as the encore I sang along like the stage was MINE. So fun, this.

Here's to more Yay Weekends, indeed!
Mar. 26th, 2012 03:17 am (UTC)
I love bonus entertainment (Scarf Guy). I love it especially when they're oblivious.
Mar. 26th, 2012 03:57 am (UTC)
Oh, me too. People watching is just one of the best things ever but when the people are being especially goofy it's icing on the cake.
Mar. 26th, 2012 10:19 am (UTC)
I have done your bidding and had ice cream. They have the most amazing little shop here with a completely unpronouncable and unspellable name that has real ice cream, including some weird flavors like drop (meaning a kind of salted liquorice). I had strawberry-rhubarb and the most amazing vanilla made with egg yolks and cream. Going back for caramel and rum-raisin. You'd like it.
Mar. 26th, 2012 01:10 pm (UTC)
Other than the salted liquorice, they all sound simply ripping. You know I'd load up on every flavor available until I weighed 500 kilos.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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