Jul 30, 2007


To get to Mammalapuram we took a water logged cab to the airport in Mumbai, got our water bottles stolen by our seatmate on the plane, and then suffered through another cab ride from Chennai to Mammalapuram with a cab driver who got into a fist fight and also tried to kill us by passing into head-on traffic. I also arrived with cold and diarrhea.

But there are lots of things I like about Mammalapuram:
Hundreds of brightly painted boats on the beach
Baby cows everywhere
Mosquito nets (thank god)
Beach front restaurants
More bangles than imaginable. Who wants bangles?

We might go to a crocodile sanctuary later and some temples. Hopefully the crocs arent attracted to the smell of sunscreen and mosquito spray.

Jul 27, 2007

Thanks D & A- nice resemblance

I see you have placed me in a bar. Nice touch!

Arrival in Mumbai!

I made it to Mumbai after 24 hours in transit. Once I got to Madeline's hotel my wallet was totally empty because the cab drivers swindled it all away. I am so gullible. I also want to rescue all of the skinny little bobble-head kittens who like to rub their faces on parked scooters.

Today I learned how to wipe with water, that chocolates melt here, and that Madeline's pants are like Ali baba's pants.

Now we're off to the tailor to pick up Madeline's custom business suit. (Hot!)

Not sick yet...

Jul 22, 2007

Little terrors and a perfect cat

My mom and her doggies came to see me this weekend. We lost Spud instantly and later found him on the roof. He really liked to run up the edge. I did not like witnessing this.
Pansy on the other hand recently broke her foot and has a cast/booty that makes her looks like a hairy little ballerina.
The next morning my mom woke me up at six because that's when coffee is supposed to be served. My half and half had soured and I refuse to shop before leaving the country, so we used mint chip ice cream.
Birdy spent most of Friday night and Saturday morning in the kitchen cupboard where she is safe from the daredevil and the ballerina.
Sitting on your food machine does not make it turn sooner!
I'm leaving for India in three days to see Madeline! I am going to try and blog from there, but it probably won't be too easy. Thanks to everyone who kept me company in my lonely summer moments.

Jul 18, 2007

Butte Store and more (Part II)

Our second day was just as full. Here is one particular Miwok grinding rock.

All around the grinding rock area were the manzanita copycats accept for the fact that their under bark was bright green. So cool.

This is the inside of a gigantic Miwok round house.

The Kennedy Mine had four tailing wheels (two still standing) that help carry the ore up and over the hills to the mill. This is the Kennedy mainframe looking through the tallest tailing wheel.

Sheep Ranch was cool. We almost crashed Allen and Allyn's reunion. The old gas station was a highlight.

A little closer to Yosemite is Chinese Camp. The main grouping of abandoned buildings were all connected to chicken coops. We were able to go inside some of the buildings.

Leggy picks stickers from her socks...a major theme of this trip.

Knight's Ferry was a nice surprise. We went to see the covered bridge, and discovered some fortress type buildings.

Mucky muck.

The bridge was covered to keep the wood from getting wet and expanding and cracking.

Jul 15, 2007

The Butte Store and more (PART 1)

There were several minor freakouts before Wild Dani, Legs and I settled into our weekend in and around Amador County. First we couldn't find a campsite...and despite my calm, no-let's-not-plan nature, I got a little nervous. When we finally found "Indian Grinding Rock" camp ground W.dani and Legs realized that we had no stove. Limp finger pointing ensued so I ran off to pee only to return to news that there was also no tent...and no coffee making stuff. 'OMG' you must be thinking...but everything turned out just fine. We slept outside both nights and I never even needed a sweatshirt. The second night however a giant animal ran through our camp. That was scary.

We hit Fiddletown (settled in 1849) in the morning after a brief stop in Volcano (1848). Volcano was a bit too cute for me, but has a lot of firsts including first library, first private law school and first theater.

Fiddletown, named for the 'fiddlin' around' that the people there did, had a giant dinosaur skeleton. Man this town is old.

After seeing a baby fox on the side of the road drag around too run-over legs I was very sad. Not even seeing the dramatic Kennedy Mine in Jackson helped. I am so sensitive.

Although the town of Butte has all but vanished, Butte Store was really cool. There has been some heavy reinforcements put in to help keep the walls from falling.

Near the Mokulemne River was a burned down appliance store. My theory was that this car crashed into it...the driver got out and lifted the hood to try and put the fire out...and poof, up in smoke went all of the shiny appliances. Charred refrigerators and ovens galore.

I really liked these spiny flowers

What trip is complete without almost stepping on a giant snake? Luckily this one was not a rattler. I also got a pretty good video of it that I'll post soon.

Campo Seco was another good find, although mostly off limits to help protect the endangered Valley Elderberry Longhorn Beetle. Three roofless stores, including the Adams Express Agency building, were all in a row with trees growing up from the ground. We didn't see the school which Varney has a great shot of.

Our evenings were similar to most camping evenings I've had this summer. A few beers and more than enough exploding marshmallows. I'll blog day 2 soon!

Jul 11, 2007

These are mine teeth

It's not hard to tell that these are my teeth...see the blue one?

And this is supposed to stop me from grinding them down to little old man nubs because my insurance probably doesn't cover caps...just like they didn't cover this.

Birdy just sniffed it.

Jul 10, 2007

I <3 Philip Varney

In the introduction to Arizona's Best Ghost towns Varney says: "...don't stop looking for that elusive ghost town with the playing cards still on the table. I found it - once. But I won't hand it to you..." I would totally piss my pants.

Here are the three that I have so far...two more are on their way.
Oh Phil.

Jul 5, 2007

The day I did manly things

I started my fourth of July off right by going to the butcher shop to grab a juicy steak.

Then these two guys
put this
back where it belongs

and drank Canadian beer
and a smaller American one.
This is the meat.
This is the song.
This is the dance.
And these are the tears.
There was a lollypop dress,
a short nap,
and patriotic thievery.
Julia is a stunning host as usual.