Sunday, July 31, 2005

It was hot, there was traffic

What were we expecting on the 4th of July weekend? Heat and traffic, actually.

4th of July trip

More distemporal blogging...we headed up to Grandma's for the July 4th. It was clear weather, but hot here. We were hoping for cooler weather at Grandma's, which we got.

4th of July trip

More distemporal blogging...we headed up to Grandma's for the July 4th. It was clear weather, but hot here. We were hoping for cooler weather at Grandma's, which we got.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

bye bye, Polly

This is a somewhat distemporal post, since I took this just before Wifey left, but I did have to post the news that the Foxchase Cinemas are no more. They're remodeling the Foxchase strip mall, taking out the dinner theatre and Macgruder's market in addition to the cinemas. Although it was a five minute walk down the street from our place, the only movie we saw there was Spellbound, the HBO movie about national spelling bee competitors. They did show good, second-run arthouse films, but there was only ever a 50-50 chance of finding one of those films because half of the screens at the Foxchase showed pornos, while the other half showed the artsy flicks.

The strip mall is being remodeled to better inegrate it with Duke St., which it fronts on, and the Holmes Run park, which runs behind it. Apparently, a Harris Teeter market is moving in, so now we will have a local chichi market. Interesting replacement for a 1/2 porno theater.

not so hot

It hasn't been all heat here, as you can see from this shot of the sign at the hotel out in the Shenandoah Valley, where Wifey took both of us for a weekend of bike rides with Potomac Pedalers for my birthday.

We didn't stop much on the rides, and I don't think we took any pictures on either ride, but they were both beautiful, rolling through the valley, along the river, sometimes on roads so narrow it felt like we were on someone's driveway.

And, no matter what this sign shows, it was hot. On Sunday my new bike computer recorded a high of 92.5 F on the ride--with about 90-95 percent humidity, I'm sure.

Both were good days to stay out of the sun, which we did on Saturday after the ride, taking a nice long nap rather than heading out to the pool, which we thought would have been more draining than refreshing. After that we went out to the dinner that they hosted for us at the town shelter (we were in New Market, a little gateway community out in the valley). Overall, the weekend was beautiful; it was nice on the few days before Wifey left to spend time with her (and Barky, of course) and no other or activities or distractions. We did get all kinds of cue sheets for rides all over the area, and we'd like to go back and explore some of them. First, however, Wifey will have to return from her trip.

It would also be nice to wait for some cooler weather (maybe there will even be foliage out there), when we could take the time for some of the longer rides--or just take longer on some of the shorter rides, some of which go by wineries.

I'm sure that we'll be back out that way, preferably when it's a little cooler--but above -196.

Friday, July 22, 2005

only in D.C....

only here could they cause a riot with their plan to avoid really was umbrella night, and they really did hand them out on the way out, but not as people were walking by--no, they went for the "swarm the innocents" strategy in which an unruly, stinking, half-drunk mob surrounds innocent employees who didn't even have time to open the boxes before we swarmed like killer bees. Once members of said mob get their booty, they have to then fight their way out of the horde that they just fought their way to the center of...yeah, it was smooth like a barrel cactus...but at least there wasn't an umberiot in RFK--not in RFK, just in the parking lot (props to Dave who found the back way into and out of the horde--avec booté)...and yes, fights did break out...

the pressure... was really getting to us...not the pressure of the game (more of a long meandering fluke, as Laura said), but the suffocating pressure of having to sit out in this heat without even the hint of a breeze...finally Laura snapped...

funny, it doesn't look hot...

right, actually the grass looks nice and cool, but to get the full effect, look at this picture sitting in a sauna with 28,000 refreshing...

at the game...

..OK, so I didn't get there until the 4th...nobody had left yet...and only Houston had scored (just, on an error)

take me out to the ballgame

On my way out to RFK to join Dave and others from work at a Nats game. It was threatening a thunderstorm earlier, but that has passed--around here, anyway. It's OK if it does come for two reasons: it might break this heat and it's umbrella night (although Dave says that we don't get the goods until after the prevent an umbrella riot, I'm sure).

So, yes, Barky is left to fend for himself, but after a day in daycare, I hope he just sleeps. On the way down to pick him up, I called Mama who still is holding onto baby, even though baby is, as she says, "in pole position." Here's hoping baby doesn't come out at 200 MPH.

Also called Dana, who is back safely from dropping off Jason in Texas, busy w/all the Supreme Court happenings, and finding the time to jet off to Florida for a coupla' days. After she's back from her next jaunt, we'll get together for a drink or something, and when Wifey and I are both in town again, we'll have her over for dinner, since she fessed up that it's been microwave dinners for her since she dropped off the chef in Texas.

Rolling into L'Enfant Plaza, our old morning and night stop, listening to Postal Service. It's all so federal.

Let's hope for a rain delay or a slow game...missed about the first hour so far.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Feeling the Heat

Yesterday was hot and muggy, but the suffocating humidity broke during the night, making today just hot and moderately (relatively speaking) sticky. I'm sure that it's not as hot here as it is in Nigeria, where Wifey is for the next 10 days or so, especially because I really only venture outside to walk Barky and go to and from work.

However, I should head down to the garden tonight with some cages for the tomato plants and a hoe for the weeds. I'll have to wait until later--around 8:30 or so--when it's cooled off some. Everything seems to be growing well there, given the heat and all the rain that we've been getting--unfortunately, "everything" includes the weeds. Perhaps next year we'll concentrate on gardening out of some containers on the balcony. This plot is pretty large and just far enough from home that we certainly haven't tended to it as much as it deserves.

And, it's not as if we don't have enough other activities to distract us over the summer. With Wifey gone, I've had trouble keeping track of what day it is, what time it is, what I should do, and so on, to the point that I forgot to take poor Barky to daycare today (it's a rough life, eh?). I called, and they'll be able to take him tomorrow, even though we're supposed to give them 24 hours notice of any cancellation. They kindly waived that since this is our first transgression.

Someone must have transgressed last night. As I was walking Barky down the hill, a truck parked along the south curb, and the driver popped up the hood and proceeded to start working on the engine. When we got to the bottom of the hill, there was a southbound SUV on S. Pickett that slowed at the intersection to allow two minivans to turn up Valley Forge in front of it. Odd. I wondered why the SUV would do that, but I was pretty engrossed in the BBC podcast on Marx that I was listening to, so I let it go. Odd, too, that there were two minivans, identical except color--one black and one white.

Then, as we crossed S. Pickett, an unmarked (but obvious) cop car barreled across S. Pickett, up Valley Forge. After we were across the street, I turned and saw that all of the vehicles--SUV, minivans, cop car--and some others that probably came down through the Arbors, had hemmed in the truck parked along the south curb and, although he was blocked from view, it appeared that the driver was on the pavement in front of the truck. All of the cops were in what looked like SWAT team uniforms rather than regular beat uniforms. Some of them were in plainclothes.

Initially, no one was allowed to pass the scene, but eventually they started letting people around--once they had the suspect in the back of a car, it appeared. There were several cops wearing ski masks, showing only their eyes. It was a hot day to be dressed like that, so I'm sure that they really didn't want to be identified by anyone.


By the time we went around the bowling alley came back, they had a dog out, sniffing all around the area. Fortunately, Barky didn't see him and make a ruckus. Interesting night, to be sure. I'll remember that the next soccer mom-mobile next to me might be on its way to a bust. Geez.