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Thursday, May 6, 2010

5/6/2010 - Ahhh... the good life

You don't have to be in some exotic port (although a little warmth would have been welcome). Today was what retirement is all about.

It didn't start out that way. If it had I wouldn't have gotten out of bed until 10 AM or so. But, since today was my bi-weekly otter toy cleaning day at the Aquarium, I was up at the crack of dawn. Okay, that might be overstating it a bit since I didn't actually have to be there until 9:00, but still... Anyway, it was such a nice warm, windless day at the Aquarium and stayed that way on my walk back to the boat that I decided we needed to just go play. I had a deuce of a time talking Lulu into it but, after I offered to change her mind with a cat o' nine tails, she finally grudgingly relented.

So, we caught the 11:13 City Loop bus to Fred Meyer, way up at the north end of town. Our sole goal there was to find some kind of hot knife that Lulu could use to cut Sunbrella (a synthetic-based fabric commonly used for sail covers, etc. on boats), and we were both looking for a couple of nice hooded sweatshirts. I'm happy to say we scored on both accounts.

Next we meandered south on 101 and stopped at Super Oscar's Mexican Restaurant for some brunch. Technically it was late enough to be called lunch but in our frame of mind it was still early enough to be brunch. Lulu had her usual breakfast burrito and I had a delicious batch of huevos rancheros. Muy sabroso!

After brunch we walked further south to Staples. I want to get a smaller digital camera that I can carry in my pocket without it feeling bulky. Now that I'm doing a daily blog and Blogo let's me pre-format and include photos, I want to take lots of pictures to illustrate the blog entries. But, alas, although they had cameras that would fit the bill nicely, they didn't have anything in the $60-$80 price range I was looking for. Maybe I'll check some on-line prices. Anyhoo, we left Staples empty-handed and veered west towards the beach. Next stop: the Sandbar & Grill.

The Sandbar is a nice laid-back place where, even though we don't go there all that often, the barmaid knows what we drink without asking. They usually have complimentary peanuts (it's one of those places where you throw the shells on the floor) but were out today due to a shortage based on cold weather down south, or so she explained to one customer. But, having just had brunch, we weren't needing peanuts anyway. After a nice relaxing brew, we headed south and then east to stop by the Post Office and then the grocery store.

From JC Thriftway, we walked over the local co-op (Oceana) so Lulu could score some granola to tide her over until she has time to make more. Just around the corner from Oceana is a place we have been meaning to visit for quite awhile: Mai Asian Market. In our canned stores onboard we found a little can of Thai curry paste and used it in something Lulu made. It was really good and we figured we needed a few more cans. We knew the chances of finding it at Safeway or JC Thriftway were very slim, but sure enough, there it was at Mai. Bought 1/2 dozen cans and had a nice chat with the Asian lady who runs the place.

Next stop was Englund Marine Supply where I ordered 200' of anchor chain to be delivered to the boat. 200' at about a lb. per foot. Yeah, I'd play hell getting that back to the boat without a car.

By now we had finished everything that we "needed" to do and, as it was only about 2:15, we figured a nice stroll along the bayfront was in order. The weather was starting to get a wee bit cooler as the wind picked up. If it's blowing 15 mph anywhere in Newport, it'll be blowing double that on the bridge. Or at least it'll feel that way. So, we opted to wait for the bus to take us back. Only thing was, the bus had just gone by and wouldn't be back for almost 2 hours. What to do to kill the time? What to do, what to do? Hey! There's the Historic Bay Tavern ("Home of Winos, Dingbats, and Riff-Raff"). Guess we best stop in for a couple of cold ones while we wait. And so we did.

Later, we caught the bus back to the boat and now I feel like taking a nap.

So, what's the difference between what we did today and what we'll be doing in Mexico? Not too much really. The cervezas and huevos rancheros will be cheaper there, we shouldn't need the hooded sweatshirts and we shouldn't need to worry about the cold wind coming up. Other than that it'll be just another day in paradise, just like it was today.

BTW, for those of you who don't actually know me, the picture above is a good 15 years old and taken on our old boat. But the attitude remains the same.

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