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Rented a house with a bunch o’ pals on the North Shore of Lake Tahoe for NYE… wood-burning stoves, 2 feet of fluffy white snow, hot tubbing & being drunk for 24 hours.

God, I love the holidays.

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S and I finally had a day off together.

And what did we decide to do?

Why, travel to the land of vampirical Lost Boys {Santa Cruz}, of course.

Here are the things we saw today.

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For the 4th of July, my cavalier fella suggested that we camp. … Like, sleep-on-the-ground-in-a-tent-with-nary-a-shower-to-be-found camp. And since my initial plan to rent a cabin at Russian River had fallen through, I caved and agreed to tent it up for the holiday weekend.

Our destination?

Lake Berryessa.

We got a great site, rented a car and hit the road with our fave SF couple and both of our dogs in tow. We even stayed two nights! Ate more meat, drank more beer and saw more stars than I have in a very, very long time. So, I guess unsurprisingly, I enjoyed myself and would totally venture back for more swimmin’ and drinkin’.

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This is completely unrelated to anything…

During my daily obsessive let’s-check-what-countries-my-bloggie-visitors-live-in, I noticed that I’ve gotten a fair amount of recent hits from a few places in Mauritius, a tiny but apparently GORGEOUS island just to the east of Madagascar. We had a family friend who lived on Madagascar for the better part of the 90s and had my mom been a little more comfortable sending me halfway around the world, I would have visited and hopefully gotten a chance to see this fabulous island.

From what I could find on Flickr, Mauritius is apparently paradise. White sands. Unreal ocean. Creole speaking folks (and undoubtedly deliciously spicy food). It seems like the ideal amalgamation of Bali, New Zealand, Bahamas, and my dreams. In short, I want to live there. Now.

How’s the market for English tutors over there? 😉

Piccie obviously not taken by me, but with any luck…

Last week, I went to the Grammys! The evening was rife with famous people and people who want to be famous, talented musicians and otherwise. I wore my poufy Anzevino & Florence dress as planned and had a blast!

After our whirlwind tour of LA that morning, Shyrynne and I bustled back to the hotel to get ready. Quick shower, primping and strutting and we’re out the door, en route to the Staples Center by 3:30. In our seats by 4. Lights lowered by 4:45. And… Go!

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Mmm… design…

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I had a lovely time this past weekend, despite my lifelong aversion to Los Angeles!

The weekend was a whirlwind of tasty restaurants, wrong turns, endless bus rides and glimpses of marginally famous people…

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Woot! L.A. and the Grammys were unbelievably fun!

I’m still in the process of sorting through my piccies (practically none of which were actually taken at the Grammys since cameras were strictly forbidden), so please enjoy these snippets of lovely things I saw whilst in the City of Angels…

My friend’s heartbreakingly adorable dog, Ms. Esther Demue…

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Woke up bright and early, pumped to tackle a hike into the Badlands! After an omelette and a quick cup o’ joe at the Lodge, Justin and I procured a gigantic bottle of water to guard us against the increasingly oppressive midday sun and set out to embark upon the Notch Trail, moderate-strenuous, 1.5 miles.

The Badlands guide recommends that anyone afraid of heights skip this trail. They also warn that it’s dangerous during and after heavy rainfall and that you should stay on the trails unless you have a compass and a topographical map because if you get lost, there’s no cell reception and you’ll probably die. But nowhere in the guide (or on the grounds for that matter) does it prohibit anyone from attempting any of the trails – it’s like the Badlands management is telling patrons that yes, it’s dangerous here, but we trust your good judgement… have a good time! This is when it really hit me that we were no longer in the whitewashed, babyproof, use-the-handrails-please Northeast… we were in the fucking Wild West. And I liked it.

Armed with this new sense of frontier-y adventure, Justin and I started the trail which was tame enough, meandering through a canyon with slightly prickly underbrush, until we came upon this…

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Monday, July 20, 2009

Awoke at a comfortable and completely reasonable 8 am to a deliciously free breakfast of biscuits and gravy, Belgian waffles, grits, yogurt, juice and tea – an absolutely superb spread, especially for a Super 8. Swiped a couple of bananas for the road and headed to the front desk to check out, where we received our first “who are these loud-mouthed brown children; shouldn’t they be cleaning the bathrooms or making me a pie” look of the trip. Of course, we brushed that aside; you can’t have thin skin when you’re as loud/brown as my brother and I.

Anyhoo, we got on the road and were making great time northward until we hit yet another multi-mile stretch of road construction! “Road Work Next 26 Miles”… Ugh, I thought and said, and slowed my pace to keep within the legal limits. There were giant orange cones and barrels to either side of me, which made me feel just a tad claustrophobic considering the size of my vehicle, but I managed to keep it together. Things were going smoothly; I only had 10 or so more miles of road work left and that’s when I saw it. A huge blackbird swooping dangerously close to my windshield. It got closer and closer, I had absolutely no room to swerve and stopping was not an option.

BAM! I hit the bird.

Shaken, I had to continue to the end of the roadwork until I was able to pull off onto a shoulder and check the damage, which I imagined would involve feathers and possibly brains. But, much to my surprise, that giant bird didn’t even make a dent! Whew. The rest of Iowa was uneventful.

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Hi, I’m Lauriebot!

I live in San Francisco. I used to live in NYC, Washington DC, and London.

I like to take the pictures.

I like color, excess, food, light, clothes, and going places.

I also like talking to people.

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