Last week was an impossible work week and then on Thursday the MIL went into the hospital. She’s still there fighting off pneumonia and a UTI. The MIL is better, but not entirely out of the woods. She’s old/frail and has Parkinson’s. Pneumonia is not a joke and for that matter neither is the persistent UTI.
So, this weekend didn’t really go as planned. My hope for the weekend was to relax and sit outside staring at nothing. Perhaps some reading and music listening would have been involved.
Today we went by to visit with the MIL for a bit and then we came home. It was 2-ish and we had plans to sit outside, vegetate and smoke a chicken* for dinner. Instead, 20+ kids and their parents showed up next door for a brownie/girl scout extravaganza. It looks like recess at an elementary school in the neighbor’s backyard. The chicken is on the smoker and we are not sitting outside enjoying this beautiful afternoon. C’est la vie.
In other news, I ripped out most of the garden. I left the herbs, naturally, and one grape tomato plant. I plan on planting some lettuce and spinach. If I get crazy, perhaps a chard plant or two. The success of the garden is mixed. We did well with peppers and the tomatoes were so-so.
When you buy a chicken at the Farmer’s Market, you find out that the chicken was still clucking until Thursday.
Woke up this morning and saw this:
This chap joined us the other day:
By join, I mean that I walked down the beach and picked up one of the intact dead horseshoe crabs and put it next to us. Lots of dead crabs in various states of undone on the beach this week.
We’ve been hitting the beach later in the afternoon, so we had happy hour oceanside yesterday:
Nothing beats a beer, the ocean, a pod of dolphins and your better-half sitting next to you.
I recently worked on a project that went so far over deadline that it was as if there was never a deadline. There were many reasons why the deadline rolled right by, but none were a result of my own work. That’s a tough thing to swallow knowing that you’ve done everything you can and still the stuff doesn’t get done when it was promised. Ah, well. Hopefully it was a learning moment.
This week we had a major deadline for training that happens in two weeks. This project has been a cluster from the beginning and if the words scope creep, poor software design and lackluster management are familiar terms for you, then you know what it’s like to work on this project. I’ve worked on lots of projects in my time, but this ranks high on the list of the worst. However, we met yesterday’s deadline.
Mostly, we met that deadline because my boss’s boss booked this room for me for a week and a half:
A room with computer equipment and silence is a thing of beauty.
Where have you been intertubes? I’ve been working like a dog. I can’t wait for vacation or the end of the year. Whichever is first.
We do actually have some pretty flowers in the yard, but they are short-lived:
We took The Nieces to several spots on the James this weekend. The Nieces added to this:
A couple of weekends ago we canned tomatoes and this weekend we’re going to do it again. The first batch came from the green grocer down the street from our house. We kneeled on the floor and looked through the seconds/leftovers they had from Origins Farm. This weekend we’re going to get hooked up with a farmer at the Farmer’s Market. I need to call them and ask them to bring us a case.
When I got home from work this afternoon, I canned dilly green beans. Oh baby. So simple and so tasty.
I was having a drink in a hotel bar and this song came on:
I played it for the better-half and he said that’s Take Five (sho ’nuff):
Last night we saw these folks:
Pleasing to my ears.
This is probably the last San Fran post unless something is either totally amazing or completely pisses me off.
Here’s the obligatory photo from my window:
It looks just like that at 4 and 5 in the morning since I’ve been up at both of those times. Time-shifting is hard.
If you have ever been to San Francisco, then you know when a cable car is coming. Did you know the cables are in the street and pull the cars along? I waited in the window to give you this shot:
I knew the fun had to end, but I didn’t expect zero of it from 8:30-6:30 today. It was a slow day at the exhibit hall.
Yep, I’m (wo)manning a portion of the company booth in an exhibit hall for most of this week.
The best part happened at 5:30 when the wine bottles popped open:
We’re in California and it would be a shame to not sample a glass of free wine. By the time the wine bottles opened, my colleague and I had definitely earned a glass–or maybe we just endured it to earn it.
A bunch of Superman wannabes getting ready to take off:
And there’s Coit Tower in the distance:
The Rock is in the distance:
A better shot of Alcatraz:
Since I accepted that I am, in fact, a tourist, I went to a popular spot:
It wouldn’t be our garden without some troubles.
This garden is pretty empty:
First the cucumber died, then all but one green bean plant kicked it and now the acorn squash is dying off. It looks like we have an infestation of cucumber beetles. Just laid down some chemical death. RIP buggies. The grape tomatoes seem to be thriving.
The other garden is a riot of life with only the cilantro plant calling it quits.
You’ll notice both gardens are covered in netting. There are too many hungry birds in the backyard and the netting has stopped us from losing any more tomatoes. After the fifth tomato hanging on the branch with half of it missing, we laid down the law.
Our entree for dinner tonight is the same as the first meal I cooked for the better-half. It’s funny that we remember that meal so well. The only thing that’s vague is the starch side dish, but the entree, vegetable and wine are firmly in both of our memories.
The entree came out of a cookbook from the bookstore I worked in when I graduated from college. The entree can be considered my first adult dish. That go-to dish everyone should have according to Them. Whoever they are.
It’s called dilly chicken breasts and it is dead simple. Mayo, sour cream, fresh lemon juice, garlic, dried dill (I used fresh tonight) and salt and pepper. Bake until done and eat.
As I was whipping up the sauce we talked about cooking as single people. Neither of us did much of that – I probably did more of that than he did. Mostly because I had no money and it wasn’t anything fancy.
When we first met we ate out all the time. His first dish for me was a chicken and walnut stir fry recipe from his uncle. We still have the recipe and it has lots of instruction along with the ingredients. He had never cooked for anyone before. I guess courtship does things for people.