Summer is here. Summer is great.
Summer is always way the heck too busy.
I find my daily social calendar gets double and triple-booked more often than a flight from Cali to New York on Christmas eve. Current events about to come up in the next 3-4 weeks: A trip to Alaska for a friend’s ordination and hiking in Denali, daily running excursions, wine parties, roller-derbies, church picnics, BBQ’s, more ordinations (3 in total!), weddings, hiking friends/groups, beach trips, movie nights, bachelor parties, journals to read, house parties, local festivals about every weekend, folks visiting from out of town, last Thursday, first Thursdays, weekly brewpub meetups with coworkers/friends, great local summer bands to go see just about every night, personal coding projects, climbing and hiking clubs I’d like to get involved with (I want to climb Hood and St. Helens), taking photographs, etc, etc, etc. I seem to turn down 4x the number of things I can make it too. It’s been wearing on me a bit. As a person that loves their quiet and down time, I usually find that by summer’s end I’m ready for a couple long months of rainy indoor activities.
Still, all this activity has brought another interesting set of questions with it. See, every year up till this one for the last 4-5 years, my summer has been figured out. I was usually doing stuff at a parish, hospital, or other seminary assignment. But now my time is all my own, and I find myself kind of floundering as to how to spend my time. I have been doing a lot of running lately to get back in shape, and as I was thinking about it a priest friend’s sermon came to mind. In one homily, he simply asked, “What will you do with this one, beautiful, wacky life you’ve been given?” It really sums up the question I’m asking myself. So. Where will it be?
Availability of sweet tea as the delineation of the Mason-Dixon line: http://eightoverfive.com/SweetTea.swf
Dante’s Inferno – a virtual trip through Hell: http://web.eku.edu/flash/inferno/
A game show in Japan where contestants have to strike a fixed pose which matches the holes on the board: link
Guy attached a camera to his cat’s collar and recorded his adventures: Link
LOLCats have their own programming language! Link
Here’s a joke I used in Denali on the park bus ride – got a good laugh:
The ranger gets on the bus and informs us to enjoy the park, but that we are indeed in bear country. While everything should be perfectly safe, we should take a few precautions. First, make noise while you walk so bears can hear you and get out of your way – try wearing little bells on your backpack/etc. Secondly, if you do encounter a bear, bring pepper spray. If the bear charges you, give it a full dose in the face. Finally, watch for bear droppings. Bears are territorial, so if you see bear droppings, odds are good they’ll be back so move through the area quickly.
A fellow camper asked how we recognize bear droppings. “Oh, that’s easy,” said the ranger, “they’re the droppings with little bells in them and smell like pepper spray.”
I’m up in Alaska right now. This last week was one of my best seminarian buddies ordination to the priesthood here in Fairbanks. A couple of us flew up for the ceremony and ensuing revelry. It was a great ceremony and went wonderfully.
It was also my first trip to Alaska as well. Unfortunately, I only have had an extra day or two to go around and see the sights. I went to the University of Alaska and the museum (highly recommend). Went out to see the Alaska pipeline, the large animal research center with musk-ox and reindeer, ate at a lot of greasy spoons (with reindeer meat sausage), went to North Pole, Alaska (most amazingly bad tourist trap I’ve yet visited), and drove down to Denali. I have one day to do a trip through Denali, then next day I catch my flight back home. Sigh. Where does the time go? Hopefully I’ll get some good pictures tomorrow. Haven’t gotten out of town to take many so far since we’ve been doing ordination activities.