I totally wanna be a Ting Ting when I grow up.

Yesterday Ant came home from work early (I don't really believe he even has a job) and we loaded up the Sprinter, got into our smelly wetsuits, and headed to Crissy Field to do some paddling. I think I set a new record for most number of falls in a 5 minute time span. Ant, who was probably a fish in all of his past lives, was like, "It's a little bumpy today, right," as he zoomed past me at warp speed. I was like, "BUMPY?!?!? #@!!$@#! A tsunami would be easier to paddle through than these freakin' waves!!" And SPLASH! I was in the water again!

Despite the fact that I spent more time in the water than on the board, it was a super fun time. The water was freezing but it was warm and sunny so it felt awesomely refreshing every time I fell. Enjoy the pics. In the ones where I'm actually standing, that's Angel Island in the background. In the sitting ones you can see Alcatraz. And the one with the blimp? I'm the teeny tiny speck waaaay out there.

2 more sleeps until take-off!!!

Man oh man I got a lot of shit to do! You know what that means...I'LL BE WASTING TIME ON THE INTERNETS ALL FREAKING DAY!!!

But first - coffee and a little boo-tay shakin' to the Chicago Blues Harmonica Project!!
I wish someone would bring me a sammich.

And in case any of you were wondering, you must pedal 3 times to ride a bike from the window in our living room to the fridge. You could probably make it on 2 and just coast in, but I was going for a strong finish.

Last night Ant and I walked down to OB to watch the sunset and have a few beers. We were looking for a place to sit when we noticed Stefaans' uber cool minivan in the lot, so we parked ourselves on the hood, cracked open some cold ones, and watched Stefaans paddle his little heart out amongst all the waves. When he finally got out of the ocean, we chilled for a bit and listened to his stories from his recent trip to Mexico (no wind makes for a pretty dull kitesurfing trip) and then said our goodbyes and headed off for some BBQ at Brothers Restaurant, on Geary.
Headed over to Muir Woods to get a long run in (6 miles! Can I get some love, please?!?) and say goodbye to the trees before I left for my adventure. Hard to explain how much this place means to me. For most of 2008 things were not so great for me - so difficult I even told my parents about it! I even called Canada!! My health was at its worst point ever and the doctors were out of options, advising me to swallow a ton of pain meds (I didn't) and just let it "run its course" (it has, and thankfully it chose the better path to take). Being told to let my illness "run its course" brought on an awful mix of emotions, as many people do not survive an illness like mine. I was far away from true friends and family and after being overseas for years I didn't know where I stood in their lives, I was still adjusting to being back in America, and the people I had out here who should have supported me were either unable or unwilling to do so. Other issues in my personal life paled in comparison to my health, but didn't make matters any easier. Somehow, when I really seriously needed a little space of my own to unravel in, the Universe sent me to Muir and it immediately became my place of healing and refuge. I have hiked, ran, and cried my way through some of these trails so often I feel like I could get through them blindfolded. Many of the rangers here greet me by name.
While I wouldn't say I've met too many quality people here, the ones I met on these trails were awesome. One particularly rough afternoon I wandered for hours, and when I was convinced I was deep enough into the woods that I wouldn't see another person, I sat down next to a beautiful redwood that had to be hundreds of years old and I just let loose and cried and cried and cried. All of a sudden there was a woman, maybe in her upper 50s, low 60s, and she just sat down next to me. Never said a word, just sat with me while I cried. Having her unspoken permission to cry was exactly what I needed, and I let shit out that day that would probably still be buried deep inside if she hadn't shown up. When I was finally all cried out, she just handed me a tissue and got up and wandered down the trail, and I thought, "I've been blowing my nose on my sleeves for hours and you've had tissues this whole time?!? WTF, lady?!?"

My time in SF is coming to an end - for the time being, at least. It's such a big world and the time has come for me to get out there and experience a little more of it. I hope wherever I end up I'm blessed enough to find a place that will nurture me and keep me safe in my darkest hours, just like these trees did. I will miss these woods more than any person I've met here. I hope all you guys are lucky enough to have your own Muir, too, and I hope you visit it often.

San Francisco, CA -------> Joshua Tree National Park, CA -------> Saguaro National Park, AZ -------> Austin, TX -------> New Orleans, Louisiana -------> Memphis, Tennessee -------> Nashville, Tennessee -------> Cleveland, OH -------> Pittsburgh, PA -------> Allentown, PA -------> Sunbury, PA -------> San Francisco, CA

How's that for a fucking road trip?!?!? WOOO FREAKING HOOOO!!!!!

It's a very rough draft, with lots of possible changes swirling around in my big ol' brain, and of course much of how I actually get into PA will depend on the weather as I get closer to the East coast. But I'm soooooo excited!!!!!!!

I leave Monday! Lots of updates on the way!
I got off my fat ass and ran today! Can I get a high five?!?

More on that later. I'm freaking starving!
Happy Lunar New Year! Year of the Ox!!! Guess who happens to be an ox? OBAMA!

I hope all of my friends in Korea had a great time celebrating! I loved Lunar New Year when I lived in Seoul...mostly because there were fireworks and I got a crap load of time off work!

Having been born in '76 makes me a dragon. Not to be confused with my other animal identity - the cougar! HAHAHAHA!!!

Friday night we stayed in with some really good music and some really bad wine. We started out by playing Scrabble, but Ant always quits when I start really kicking his ass, so that didn't last long. Let it be known, my little blog readers, that I am the CHAMPION OF THE UNIVERSE when it comes to Scrabble!

When we got tired of drawing on the surfboard, we switched to paper, and when we got tired of that we decided to draw on me. It was silly and fun at the time, but days later I'm still trying to get that shit off my skin!

I'm having a serious motivation problem lately. Didn't even think about running yesterday, though we did go for an awesome hike. Today? Nothing. I actually forced myself to put my running clothes on and go outside and...nothing. Just didn't feel it. I walked down to the little park thinking if I got moving it might just happen but it did not just happen. Not at all. I forced myself to jog about a block, gave up and came home. I suck. I was pretty disgusted with myself, so I forced out an ab workout and some push ups, then totally negated any benefits I may have gotten from them by gulping down a beer and a few handfuls of potato chips.

I suck.

I gotta admit, zoos make me a little frisky, too. :-)
I love zoos, even though I know it's not PC to love zoos anymore because we're supposed to want all the animals to be free and roaming around in the wild. Whatever. On my list of "PEOPLE WHO MAKE ME ROLL MY EYES," those who boycott zoos on the grounds that they aren't fair to the animals are right up there with vegetarians who wear leather.
Anyway, my awesome boyfriend who says he has a job but never seems to work went into the office 2 hours late on Friday and then sent me a text 40 minutes later saying, "WANNA GO TO THE ZOO?" Fuck yeah I wanna go to the zoo!!! So, off we went.

The SF Zoo is a bit small, and reminded me a lot of the Singapore Zoo because they use so many natural barriers and they have a pretty large aviary. Gotta say, I've been to zoos all over the world and I haven't found one yet that beats the Philadelphia Zoo.

We named this guy Tina Turner.

I seriously hate monkeys.
But (!!!!!) unlike most zoos, this one has a carousel! And since it was a bit rainy and not crowded at all we got to ride it all by ourselves!! When does that ever happen?!?

On our way out we stopped at the children's zoo, and all hell broke loose when a fight broke out!

The apes were nowhere to be found, but we had a blast making up captions for this picture. Seriously, the possibilities for amusement from this pic are endless. Whatcha got?

I forget what kind of bird this is, but he had a ton of attitude and I thought he was so cool.