Monday, March 26, 2007

Cannery Row & Carmel

The next stop after the Aquarium was a walk along Cannery Row. This was also hyped up and more of a disappointment, probably because half the strip somehow disappeared behind the scaffolding that we had to walk through to get to the livlier part of Cannery Row.

I also find it ironic that there are so many seafood restaurants located right next to the Aquarium. Hmm, should I be eating seafood after learning about how we should be protecting sea life??

The highlight of Cannery Row was the wine tasting. As we walked in and out of the various stores of overpriced items, we entered our first retail winery, where we were allowed free wine tastings of four different wines of our choice (well, it was $2 a glass if you chose a wine with an * next to it). I, the "un-refined" one, just tipped the glass back and swallowed the wine in one gulp, and also making a grimace of a face while doing so. The Boy, the more "refined" one in our group, actually did what all those wine connisours do on TV--swivel the glass to airate the wine, smelled it first before tasting, took a little bit of wine and sloshed it around inside the mouth before swallowing. I tried immitating but I looked like an alien trying to drink water so The Boy made me stop trying to be all knowledgeable about tasting wine. Eh, whatever. My favorite is still the Brut sparkling wine. That glass did not make me grimace. I actually wanted more.

We continued our walk and found a second retail winery that also offered wine tasting but it would cost $5 for six different types of wine. I was already feeling tipsy from our first wine tasting, so The Boy was the only one trying out the wines at this second location. However, this place poured half a glass of wine for each type (the other place was only an inch off the bottom of the glass), so I had to help The Boy taste his selection of wines. This place also offered crackers, so I was hoping that my munching on crackers would reduce the tipsiness in my head. I was later told the crackers were for cleansing the palate before tasting a new type of wine. Goes to show what I know about the art of wine tasting.

Needless to say, I was quite giddy after that experience. Continuing our walk, err...The Boy walking and me hanging onto to him because the road kept spinning...we found a store devoted to tobasco sauce. There were walls lined with hot sauce ranging from 1 to 10 (1 being mild and 10 being "pants on fire hot"). There were samples being offered. And so there were tastings being done by the both of us. Being the hard core spicy eater, I went straight for the 10 rated habanero sauce and I tell you it made me cry. But it was a good burn.

Cannery Row was fun and all, but there was a lesson learned: McDonald's for breakfast, wine tasting for afternoon snack, hot sauce tasting for another snack, plus a heavy dinner equals really bad heartburn for the rest of the night.

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On the last day of our romantic getaway, we went to Carmel by the Sea because everyone who is in Monterey HAS to go to Carmel. Here's a tip: If you're under 40, skip Carmel. The shopping is geared for older folks and it's quite boring. The scenery was worthy of some photos, though.

Can someone tell me what language that is?

The Boy picked a flower off the tree and stuck it in my head. Isn't that sweet?

Monterey Bay Aquarium

The Boy planned a funtabulous weekend in Monterey for us (well, he agreed to the location and gave me full allowance for planning). First stop was the Aquarium. Here are some photographic highlights from our visit:
hee hee -- don't flash the octopus -- hee hee
that means you can't moon the octopus either.
The picture above is a skeleton of some weird deep sea ocean dweller. I hope it looks more friendly when it has flesh and scales.
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The picture below is of the pretty jellyfishies. It was so awesome to see this pretty glowing thing gently swimming through the water and also know that one touch of its tenticles could kill you in about three minutes.

Can you find tell which end is the moray eel's head and which is its tail?

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Below is the underside of a sting ray. I always thought rays had funny looking faces. It's blurry because this ray was swimming too fast to be caught on camera.

Can you find the flounder fish?

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Sardines swimming so fast, I was spinning around in circles.

Yes, that thing in the picture above is a fish. It's a huge fish, probably five foot in length and three feet high. However, I forgot the name of it, and can't even find it. At first, I thought it was just a floating log. But then it came floating towards the glass and it had this tiny little mouth that only opened a couple of inches, big enough to eat krill and floating micro organisms. Cool huh?

... ... ...

Overall, the Aquarium was informative and fun but still highly overrated. And it's definitely not worth the $25 per adult being charged. A tip for all those who wants to visit the Monterey Bay Aquarium in the future: be smart (like me!) and buy the tickets at your hotel or online or whereever just as long as you don't stand in line at the aquarium for tickets. Trust me, you'll spend a good hour waiting in line just to get tickets.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

TGIF -- yummy goodness

Where can you get some real good greasy goodness? T. G. I. Fridays of course!

Since I was in the area of Sunny Law School, I picked up Q and together we headed for some much needed food. First, I surprised her with a box of cupcakes from Kara's Cupcakes, which looked sumptuous and made my mouth water. However, in our shopping madness, I wasn't able to try these delicious cupcakes (I was only able to hear Q moan about it's goodness when she was eating one while I was driving us to the mall), so I'm letting Q make the reviews about those cupcakes.

Okay, back to the greasy goodness that is Fridays...

We each started off with a different form of alcoholic lemonade. See how big those glasses are? They fill it up with alcohol too. For lunch!! Who drinks that much for lunch? Needless to say, Q and I were not able to finish the drinks, and the only reason we kept ordering food was to attempt to finish the drinks. We failed miserably. I don't think we even finished one glass combined.

If you're ever at Fridays, you should try the Fried Macaroni and Cheese. They are to die for. Nice, crunchy coating on the outside. Yummy gooey cheesy goodness on the inside. I suppose anything fried is goodness to the tummy.

So, like I mentioned above, in our attempt to finish our alcoholic lemonades, we ordered the Brownie Obsession. See how pretty it looks?
And now see it disappear before your eyes!

After this healthy meal, we spent the next four hours walking off the alcohol and looking for the perfect pair of sunglasses, the perfect little purse and contact lenses solution. Fun times.

Monday, March 19, 2007

dum dum moment #4

"Option #2, $17.95 (minimum 2 people)"

Me: Honey, let's get this pre-set meal. It has everything we usually order anyway.

BF: Where? Let me see.

Me: Here, on the left side of the menu.

BF: Uh huh.

Me: It has potstickers, which you like. Then a soup dish, Honey Walnut Prawns, Princess Chicken and steamed rice. See, that should be enough for the two of us.

BF: And it's only $17.95?

Me: That's what it looks like to me.

BF: Okay, but ask if you can substitute steam rice for chicken chow mein.

Me: Okie dokie.

BF: Ever since you went back to school, you've been looking for cheap deals everywhere.

Me: Me so smart.


An hour later, after consuming all the food set out in front of us, the bill arrives and The Boy is looking at it strangely.

Me: What's wrong? Did they make a mistake with the bill?

BF: I don't know why the total is $54....

Me: What?! Let me see.

BF: I thought the meal was only $17.95.

Me: HA HA HA. We're such dum dums.

BF: Huh?

Me: It's $17.95 PER PERSON, minimum requirement of two people.

BF: Ohhhhh. Well, that makes more since because this is an upscale tourist trap.

Me: I was kinda wondering why they offered something for so cheap. Oh well. Lesson learned.


Cost of this dum dum moment: $61.00 for lunch for two and a blow to both our egos.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

doctor's orders

Due to this incident back in high school, I've been suffering from joint pain in the knees ever since. But it doesn't stop me from being active. I run on the treadmill. I run on a track. I play badminton (even tried raquetball!). I climb stairs (which hurts more than running). I used to take spin classes and even step classes (if you can imagine that especially if you know I have no rhythm). And if the pain is particularly bad on a certain day, I will either do the elliptical or not exercise at all. I just tend to ignore the pain that results every time I bend my knees.

However, there is this nagging pain that has been radiating from the corner of my left knee for the last two weeks. I have stopped running on a treadmill or around a track. I even stopped using the elliptical. This pain is worse because it tends to grow in intensity at night, when I'm trying to go to bed and all I can think about is this throbbing pain on my left knee that shoots stabbing pains up to my hips and down to my ankles. How can a person sleep through that?

So I finally went to the doctor today. She ordered x-rays and referred me to an orthopaedist, who I will probably see after Spring Break. I wanted her to order an MRI since I don't think the x-ray will show anything. But hey, whatever she needs to do to get my insurance to cover the costs is fine with me. Hopefully the orthopaedist will eventually order the MRI (and I really really really hope this will not involve surgery--vicodin will numb the pain right?).

The doctor did, however, order me to stay off my feet as much as possible and to stop all activity that would cause undue stress to my knees. i.e. no more exercise involving the legs. This is one doctor's order I will faithfully follow!

However, the only reason I exercise is to help curb the effects of all the eating that I do. So I can't exercise, it means I *shouldn't* eat as much as I normally would like to. I guess I won't be pigging out during my spring break in San Francisco.

Ha, that was funny. Like I have the will power to refrain from eating. The doctor just said lay off the feet, not lay off the food. =)

Monday, March 12, 2007

best professor ever

With twenty minutes left until the end of class, our Civ Pro Professor tells our class:

"We'll stop here for now. You all go home and get some sleep."

The class, sleep deprived from doing an all nighter on our appellate briefs, clapped loudly in appreciation. Then the Professor added:

"Oh yeah, don't forget the interpleader is due next time."

I guess we can't have it all good all the time.

And now, I am off for a much needed nap.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

orchids in bloom

BF Quote: "If you kill our love plant, the relationship is over."
Good gosh, talk about the pressure. It's hard enough to keep a regular plant alive, let alone an orchid plant! Well, it's been almost a month and the plant is still alive. In fact, the orchid has BLOOMED since Valentines Day, so I guess our love is blooming too.
Yes, you may commence gagging now.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

i finally beat it!!

after many many many many many attempts over the last month, I have finally succeeded at beating the expert level of Minesweeper. I don't care that it took me 460 seconds. I beat it. My name is on the best times list. I'm done.

I can now go back to life before the addiction of Minesweeper.