Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Hiatus Due to Busy II

Knowing that August/September would be very busy we decided to schedule a vacation in later September - a cruise. San Francisco to San Francisco - 10 days - the Sea Princess - doing the inside passage of Alaska. Yes we have done this before - but 10 days - no cooking, no laundry, no bed making, no airports, entertainment - or not....and beautiful scenery. Took about 600 pictures which I will distill into webpages for our website - in the next few days.

Sept 19th had us sailing out under the Golden Gate bridge. Cold and beautiful! Not a sight to be missed!!! Saw sea lions and seals.
Sept 20 - cruising -- 9 am was fiber get together on at sea days :) They were also doing ceramics at sea so made 2 plates and 2 bowls to go with the other heraldic plate I made last cruise.
Saw a humpback whale. They had a naturalist on board who gave wonderful lectures about glaciers and wildlife.
Sept 21 - my birthday - thank-you all for the lovely wishes - cruising. Discovered the espresso bar on board the ship.
Sept 22 - Ketchikan - walked about town. Had a good cup of coffee --- finally! Saw a red jelly fish!
Sept 23 - Juneau - Mendenhall Glacier was real treat. It had calved the day before so there was a beautiful piece of blue ice to be seen! The salmon fishery was fun and the salmon bake - yummy - despite the rain. Lots of bald eagles around but none actively flying or fishing.
Sept 24 - Skagway -- walked around town in the AM. In the PM we took the narrow gauge railway up the mountain. Passed through autumn into winter - the first snow of the season! And it was serious snow. Came down to find that a major storm had come in and was expected to do gale force winds and 100' waves. The Captain cancelled our sail of Tracy Arm Fjord (really the only part we had wanted to do) and we made fast (22 knots) south around and into the Canadian inland passage to avoid the worst of the storm.
Sept 25 - cruising - the early AM was rocky since we had to pass into the Pacific to get into the inland area. We also had lots of fun getting pilots on and off the ship. Seems we needed 2 to get through some areas which are a bit dangerous - even for our size ship. Pretty - cold - rainy. Finally managed to finish Will's naalbinded warm hat (day late!)
Sept 26 - cruising - saw dolphins. Lots of pretty scenery.
Sept 27 - Victoria - went to a Butterfly Garden and Buchart Gardens. AMAZING! Need to been seen to be believed. Pictures do not do either justice. Also celebrated our 13th anniversary - which was Sept 7.
Sept 28 - cruising
Sept 29 - home -- beautiful to watch the sun come up over the east bay hills. Came under the Golden Gate in the dark :(

We were very lucky in our table mates. The food in the dining room is MUCH better than the buffet. Also in the dining room they will make all the necessary accommodations for dietary issues. The food quality has come way down over the past 10 years, but it still is quite decent. Only 1 meal was what I would call excellent, but then I am spoiled. I should also say in all fairness that it is amazing all the meals that are prepared for over 2000 people - passengers and crew - in the 3 galleys.

Our table consisted of 6 regular and 4 "anytime diners". The other 2 couples that made up the regular diners were interesting and nice people. They also liked to dress for dinner, so we were easily the best dressed diners. One of the gentlemen was someone who was fascinating in his own right, but was always interested in what others had to say and thought. They also were one of the most gracious couples I have ever met. There is a lot to be said for graciousness and I am sad that it is a rare thing in this most modern world in which we live.

We knew before we left that my car battery was dead. Something about not driving it for long periods of time. Fortunately it did start when jumped and seems to be back to normal. Will's mini required servicing before being back to normal.
We also knew the insta-hot water dispenser was dead - new one ordered now.
We also knew that the computer on the ovens was dead. A new one was ordered that the repair man installed the new one and refurbished the stove top burners on the 30th.
--- how come it all comes at once??????---

Oct 1-2 was my Region meeting and stepping down as EGA Region Director. The meetings went smoothly and I was given a lovely present. It is easy to leave the office, only because I know I am leaving it in really good hands. Of course I still have other EGA projects to handle.

After the meeting, I made the mad dash drive to Oct Crown. Will was wonderful, taking my display up to the event for me. Since my current major embroidery project is on hold, I opted to do a basket of "practical items" - Spinning, Weaving - Circular (mini pouch that I also dyed the yarn), Weaving - Tablet - trim on my newest Viking, Dyeing, Naalbinding - Will's new hat, Knitting - Pouch, and Embroidery (stockings). Then dashed back to take Jane out to dinner.

Jane Nicholas came to do 2 workshops for us. I love hosting her. She is so gracious (there is that word again :). Will picked her up at the airport on the 1st and entertained her for the evening. I love having that man as my partner/husband!!!!! On Oct 3-4 I took her workshop and on the 5-6 I merely acted as Teacher helper. I always learn so much listening to her. Yes plans are underway to have her hopefully teach here in the San Francisco Bay Area next year again!

Then 2 days of selling items from the 2010 Seminar at a local boutique/harvest show and our "final" 2010 Seminar Committee meeting. We still have many items to sell (sigh!).

This week is a bit of recovery, putting up and doing the display at PIQF and being a celebrity.