Saturday, December 27, 2008

New Vistas

I decided to head east instead of west on the Pacific Electric this morning. It was good.
The main problem was that My Garmin footpod was not working and my heart monitor said my pulse was 28. I put the chest strap on the right and that got 'er done, but no distance.
I noticed that the trail was now open to East ave. But they still had the "dead end" sign up. I took a nice photo of the vines and the mountains. I then head over to Millken before heading back to the Coffee shop. I noticed that we had gorgeous vist of the "palm of god" - our local Valley. you could even the snow on Mt San Jactino near Palm Springs (about 60 miles/100K away). Wished I had a panoramic camera. I did get one of Mt San Gorgino. Actually, I didn't bring my EasyShare as I though It would be the same old same old. helps to have a phone with a 3 megapixel camera. so I may able to not bring a camera on my next journey, too.
Speaking on new vista, I spent the afternoon looking at apartments. Now to decide if want to move and to where. If only the had Photo shop for dwellings.
But not to worry, as the good book say, that's the Jewish Carpenter's job.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Dare to get lost?

I tried a number of new things this week:
My phone died. I wound with an LG Dare among the thing it does is GPS navigation. I also bought a Garmin Forerunner 50 HRM with a foot pod.
So I set out for my walk. I began to notice that My forerunner was recording my distance in Kilometers, not miles. Maybe I should have read my directions better. But I made to Haven before turning back. At Rochester, I tried and experiment: I had noticed that the Dare would give navigation in pedestrian or bicycle mode. So I Tried it.
It wanted my to go down to base line. Ok , maybe it doesn't know about the PET. I got to base line. Only it thought I was 200 feet short. I was on the north side, since I thought it had a sidewalk all the back to day creek. It didn't. Maybe its' a good thing I have a good sense of direction.
And the forerunner? Garmin really, really need to hire some competent tech writers. It took me about an hour to get tit set up (Hint: check to make sure your URLS are valid) Once I got it going, it was ok, but boy what a frustrating initial experience.
My back I''l get to bike reports soon.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Chasing Ghosts and the Family that Vomits together...

If you got your maps from last time, you'll notice that Jackson is right next door to another small town, Cape Girardeau. And you may remember that I've been plunked away on a novel that Feature Cape Girardeau's Founder , Louis Lorimer , as a minor character.
So mom and I drove over on Friday. Mom had come down with the same stuff that my nephew had on Thursday, but felt better.
our first stop was old Lorimer cemetery. As you have have guessed, Our Hero has his final resting place here. It's also the final stop for Louis Houck, the regions railroad pioneer, and aouther what is consider the definitive History of early European Missouri (A Tip of the helmet occurs here to both Gentlemen). It also has quite a neat overlook of the Mississippi and a pretty cross.
Another things That I took a pic of , but didn't turn out was an Old tombstone that had the inscription weathered off. The association had placed a bronze plaque with the inscription(that had yet to be stolen). One other that reminded that I was in the "show me state" was the inscription: He had been killed in the Civil War, and the Unit Inscription was Company A; 5 th cavalry( or something close). if you're lost, take a quiz: What side did Missouri take in Civil War? A: Union or B: Confederacy. The answer is A. and B. I remember from family history it was common to omit the allegiances of units in case of brothers on opposite sides (as happened to the Lingos) or switching sides (as a certain gentleman from Hannibal before moving to California and encountering a jumping frog in Calaveras County (excuse me, but there's a Gentleman in a white suit with a Cigar at my door. He says we should have supper at the Claim Jumper)
we then downtown. One thing that we always went to do was to see the display windows at Hutson's Furniture store. It's not a spectacular as I remember it. It's also the location of Louis Lorimer's "red House", which is Currently occupied by Saint Vincent's (which is not the first Catholic Church west of the Mississippi).
There is a reconstruction of the Red house across main street. we going to visit, but it was closed with a sign that would be open Saturday.
So we briefly Braved the mall, and went home.
We going to invite my brother along on Saturday, but he was , you guessed it, sick. Undaunted , we went back and found that the Red house was still closed. Oh well, Louis l, you'll just have to be subject to my lie - err - imagination(Mr Clemens said we need to get going)
So I wandered along the riverfront. Took some photos of the river wall, a barge under the bridge,and of the Common pleas courthouse on the hill.
Sunday I went back to California. My sister was going to go along to stop at a mall, but she got sick. I got it on Monday.
what, no pink houses or John Mellencamp?

Friday, December 05, 2008

what John Mellencamp and I have in common

Well, do we have in common?
In case you haven't guessed , we are both from Small towns in the Midwest.
I took a vacation and flew back home to Jackson, Missouri. in case you don't know flying into rural America can be challenging, the nearest airport to Jackson, Cape Girardeau Regional, is only served by one airline (Great Lakes) with two flights a day to St. Louis.
When I booked my flight, neither flight made sense with the flight I was finding to Saint Louis- It's one of the more confusing airports I've been to. I would have to overnight in the big city . I tried getting a flight from LAX instead of ONT(la/Ontario) , but not deal.
So I decided to rent a car, about the same price.
Then I had my accident and decided the driving a strange car in a large city with one arm was not a good idea. So I called a shuttle bus service -even cheaper!
Then my brother and my nephew Chuck(not the navy seal) decided to pick me up.
I got into Saint Louis and found my mom and Chuck. Chuck had been sick, but we all went to Steak n Shake before heading home(yes, I like regional chains)
So we made it home and settled for the night.
Wednesday, I got before mom and got the paper
and a photo from her front door.
We started out on our rounds. We stopped her friend, Loretta, to drop something off. We found another of her friend, Shirley, there getting her hair done. This a surprise since she had fallen and broken her hip a month or so ago.
we then went across the street to what used to be Leonard's Feed. it still has iconic horse in the window and mural on the side, but the inside is... clean! I remarked to the lady that was running a gift shop there that was the first time I had seen it like that!
I then walked over to the courthouse lawn (Jackson is the seat Of Cape Girardeau County.) I thou a photo of the Gazebo and of one of my dad's old places of employment, Jones Drug.
We then headed over to the cemetery to pay our respects. I was thinking about John's songs (notice the headstone is for three bodies? That's probably where they'll bury me (Copyright John Mellencamp)
We then went to wal mart - The folk here could not believe that tamales came in a can from the Kelly Food company, so I had to get proof. Alas, Wal mart did not have Irish Tamales.
We then went home. My brother and sister in law came over the afternoon. We then went to to couple of historical sites
The first is Old McKendree Methodist church, which is the oldest standing Protestant House of worship west of the Mississippi. It said it was open from dawn to dusk, but my brother found a pad lock on the door. a theme to this trip.
mom then took us over to old bethel Baptist. which was the site of the First Protestant House of worship west of the Mississippi Unlike the Methodist, this building (the one with picnic tables) is a recreation. It was the first time i had been there, Growing up, I knew it was there, but was on private property with no easy access
(in case you're wondering the Presbyterians and Lutherans set up shop a county to the north, and the Episcopalians, being genteel city folk, wound up in Saint Louis)
Thursday , Thanksgiving day, I took a walk before we had the community thanksgiving service at my mom's church. I went uptown(it's on hill, so it can't be downtown) and got the neat photo of the Courthouse while standing in the middle of high street.(I remember thinking as child how busy and bustling uptown was.)
I then wandered down to take photo of the Current Baptist(red Brick) and Methodist (grey Stone)churches and took a photo of the high school.
All this reminiscing brought to mind my favorite of John's songs - check it out - maybe I can pass some of this on:

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Confessions of a helmet Geek

whew, that was a lot of pictures!
As you can see, I bought yet another helmet. Why this one? It's an Ironman ILS. As you can see it has a built-in light for night riding. You usually wind up zip tie-ing a hiking light to do this, which sorta comprises the crash worthiness I wish it had a brighter color, but for $50, you're essentially getting a $25 helmet with $24 light built in. It seem ok here in the dark. QA - Seems OK, no carbon fiber, and the straps could be less stiff, but $50? The only other neat thing I noticed is that they have a little pie of foam to keep the buckle from digging in.
Now that you've fallen asleep.
I went for a walk. Not what I had planned, since I could not find sunscreen nor a store that sold it at 8am. It's a season item , even here in the land of endless summer.
Speaking of summer, it was 92 here.
Back to the walk. I was going to start at Milliken and walk the PET to It's a Grind. Without sunscreen I opted for less ambitious walk.I drove to It's a Grind, and walked the PET to Etiwanda and back. I took the usual Mountain pic, and some of the wind. Once I got to Etiwanda. I took one of the PE depot and walked down to where the Construction for the Extension to I=15 was taking place. I took a photo of some vineyards, and noted a hole in the Construction Fence. Did I sneak in? Who knows? I then walked back, and took some photos of the mural on the wall at the Fillippi winery before heading back for social hour. We noticed a smoke cloud to the Southwest appear. not good, as it was a massive wildfire. So I close the day by closing my permanent route that goes to the beach. It runs parallel to the 91 freeway, and form the aerial shots, the trail was burnt. I'll have to get back on the bike to check it out.