• You’ll Be Back April 13, 2017

    Geeks come in all forms. Most people think of “geek” as someone who is into sci-fi. Sure, we like sci-fi. But we’re also theater geeks. Well, Kim is, and has slowly but surely turning Chris into one. Even non-theater geeks know Hamilton is a must on the “to see” list. When we found out it was opening in San Francisco, we immediately knew we needed to go. Disclaimer: we understand that this review will make or break the show. With that power comes great responsibility. Luckily we have nothing but good things to say. Lin Manuel Miranda is breathing a sigh of relief. *phew*

    How we actually got tickets is a strange situation. We didn’t know there was an Amex presale until the day before the Amex presale (the “get information about tickets” form being filled out did nothing, by the way). As ever, websites are never really true to their word – knowing this, we logged in for tickets five minutes before the official launch. Five minutes before the presale officially started, the site was up and running.

    The problem is we didn’t know when we’d be in the San Francisco area. We knew it would be March. We looked at dates and seats available. We ended up with March 16th and March 28th. We figured we’d give the date we wouldn’t use to friends.

    Hamilton at the Opheum, San Francisco

    That was until we received an email that indicated we were clearly trying to resell our tickets. Apparently our address – shared with hundreds of others who full time and use the same mail forwarder – triggered a flag that the same address was ordering tickets more than the allotted three pairs. They threatened to reneg on both sets. The only way we could keep both, after much discussion and negotiating, is if we showed up with IDs and credit card in hand. So that’s what we did. Two more weeks than we had planned in San Francisco. Alrighty then.

    This musical. It will ruin all and any other musicals if you’ve never seen a musical in person. You will have high expectations for the rest of your days. You may have to sell your kidney to get tickets, but it would be worth it. After the first time seeing it, we were thrilled to be in a position to be able to see it again. We couldn’t wait to see it from a different vantage point and to expect what had previously been unexpected before. We would be back. Yay!

    Do yourself a favor. Buy the soundtrack. It will help you understand some words (some go fast) found here.

    If you have the soundtrack, you’ll know what’s going on but it will not prepare you to see it live. Run, don’t walk, and see it. We’ve already stalked oops researched where else it will be playing in future runs. There are so many parts to it that are so intricate and ingenious. Small things like the chorus wearing gloves during Jefferson’s introduction to larger things like having the same actors play different characters and how effective it is. You may know all the words by heart and yet you will still be surprised.

    We were able to see it from center orchestra row V, and then center orchestra row D. See it up close if you can but more to the middle of the center orchestra. There’s a reason those are the most sought-after tickets.

    We saw the entire show from the seats further from the stage, but saw so many details from up close. In the middle of the center orchestra, about 4-5 rows back, would’ve been just right.

    View of the stage from our seats


    So run. Go forth and buy tickets however you can. See it. Full disclosure: the people next to us left during intermission. This apparently isn’t the show for everyone. We couldn’t imagine who wouldn’t enjoy it but it *is* possible.

    But trust us. You want to be in the Room Where It Happens (room where it happens, room where it happens). Non-Stop. You’ll like it so much that You’ll Be Back. You’ll want to tell others The Story of Tonight. You’ll definitely be Satisfied. Don’t Say No to This. Don’t Wait for It.

    Okay, fine. We’ll stop. Before we do this One Last Time.

    Okay, really. Stopping.

  • Snow (Hey Oh) April 11, 2017

    One wouldn’t think that traveling anywhere in April would bring snow. Then, one has been wrong before. One was very, very wrong.

    We had a lovely time in California, but it was time to move on. We were excited to get our “Welcome to Oregon” picture, only to have that plan thwarted by realizing “Wait, that isn’t rain. That’s snow!” Then the white knuckling began, for sheer fact that we’d never driven the rig in anything lower than 45 degrees. We’d only been in the mountains during the dead of summer. What a difference 500 feet makes.

    So obviously we have never driven in snow before, by design. We follow the temperate weather. Winter was too cold for us in Vegas at 45-50 degrees. So yes, this surprised us a bit. This wasn’t a blizzard. It was a few flakes. Still, what do you do?

    Trees. Trees with flakes.









    First, there were a lot of truckers on the road at the time. We followed them.

    They do this professionally. We used judgement though. There was one guy who was swerving and obviously checking his cell phone. We skipped him.

    There were another round of truckers who pulled to the side of the road in the “brake check” lane. We opted to not do that and follow those who didn’t check. Could’ve been a mistake, but we’ll never know thankfully.

    Second, we took our time. That Fiat who is in a hurry to get over the mountain in record time? Go for it. There are two lanes. We stuck to the right lane.

    Third, we enjoyed it. We knew it wasn’t going to last forever. It wasn’t a treacherous snow. Flakes! Look at those!

    And then we declined by about 500 feet. And poof. It was gone. By the time we knew what had happened, it was over.

    500 feet lower

    And now we miss the snow…yeah, no we don’t.

  • Pet Blues April 6, 2017


    We had to stop writing this post because as we were writing, our little dog Piper had horrible belly issues and we had to stop what we were doing and tend to her. It was disgusting. Gag reflexes were met (hi, gag reflex!). We have seen it before (little miss likes getting into the cat food despite the doggie traps we’ve created) but with  elderly pets, it is never pleasant.

    Luckily we found a good vet in our current area who knows the pets well. They’ve already nicknamed Piper “Pipey”. She tends to win over every vet practice we enter due to her size and coloring. She uses her big bat ears as weapons to woo them in and charm them.

    How did we find our vets? Well, first Yelp comes in handy because without any other context, it’s the best we have. You will find that Yelp is subjective. That’s a nice way of saying “Yelp lies”. When arriving in a place that we’ll be for more than a week, we usually like to bring the dogs to a vet we want to use to get a nail trim and laser treatment (for Ally). We give them the pets’ records so they have them on file. It helps to go over their histories in a non-emergent time, because when there is an emergency (and during a time of stress), we don’t have to remember every single important item. It is much easier to discuss their histories when everyone (us and the pet) are calm.

    But you can’t always establish the relationship. We find a vet for every night stop we make via Yelp, but if you’re staying a day it doesn’t make sense to try to establish a relationship. This is where decisioning needs to be made.

    Once we were in an area where it was suggested that “pet care” equaled “bring them in the back yard”. Knowing this, we opted a day for what we thought was important but not emergent. You have to trust your gut. Also don’t be afraid of getting a second opinion. We found this with Sommer. We knew that kitty seizures are BAD NEWS. A day after we had to euthanize Nala, Sommer had a seizure. Our hearts sunk. We previously had a cat with brain cancer, saw what kitty seizures meant, and brought her in the next day. The practice we went to seemed to brush off the seizures and couldn’t provide good definitive guidance as to what was going on and kind of questioned their own feedback. So we went to a cat hospital where they looked at her history. What they saw from her bloodwork and her demeanor was that she was a hyperthyroid kitty who wasn’t being medicated properly. They altered her dosage. Immediately her numbers normalized and no more seizures.

    Sommer, angry that we lied about her seeing “friends”

    You’ll also find that area makes vet care better or worse. We’ve found excellent care in areas, terrible in others. Sometimes it’s the area (competition keeps the level up up up), sometimes it’s luck of the draw. Don’t be afraid to stand up for your pet and do what you feel is right. Yelp and Google can only do so much. The rest is up to you.