[Ooops. Steve's horse's name is Symbol. Misty is his dog. :-)]
We also spent time touring Seattle. We visited the Seattle Arts Museum, and Snoqualmie Falls. Outside Snoqualmie Falls, we found a train graveyard. Steve and I are both fascinated by old things, so we spent time exploring the old trains.
I got to meet Steve's friend, Alannah. She's a very passionate and outgoing person. She beautifully sang Irish ballads for us.
I went there in the spring with my friends, Paul and Jennifer. They came to visit for a weekend, and we saw all three water falls, and the Mt. Morris Dam. Paul is into professional photography, so we took time to take many gorgeous pictures.
I went there in the summer with my friend, Marcia. We had both been there before, so we decided to follow some trails away from the gorge. We visited a museum, and followed a few trails into the woods.
I went there in the fall on a whitewater rafting trip that my friend, Jackie, organized. She had invited nearly twenty people. I sat in a raft with Jackie, her two friends through work, and my friend, Mark. It's a class I and II river, so was fairly tame, but it was my first time doing such a thing, so I had a lot of fun.
I went there again in the fall with my friend, Frank. High above the Upper Falls, there is a train trellis that goes across the gorge. I've wanted to walk on that bridge for the thrill of it, so we did. It was a Upper Falls. While we were there, we had another amazing experience--a train went across the bridge. There's a pedestrian walkway on the bridge, so we were safe, but it's amazing to have seen this huge, long machine rolling past us, making the bridge shake! Afterwards, we went past the Lower Falls and walked across to an island in the middle of the river.
["One thing: The Sterling Renaissance Festival is *NOT* medieval England, it's Renaissance England (hence the name). 1585. Elizabeth I. (When I worked there we had a hell of a time getting people to play the correct time period, so I'm touchy on the subject. :-)" -- Brian Talley]
One time, I was talking with my friend, Colleen, and she suggested hiking and camping on the Appalacian Trail. I never even mentioned the idea, but I was very excited that someone else had the same idea! Colleen, her friend, Gonan, and I decided to go to the part of the trail that passes through Mount Greylock. We hiked to the top of Mount Greylock, where we rested and soaked in the beauty around us. Then we hiked to Jones' Nose, where we set up camp to a beautiful, colorful sunset. It rained the next day without stop, so we decided to hike back to our cars and call off the trip a day early. In a way, I actually enjoyed the hike in the rain because of all the new streams, and the rich colors of the forest.
Actually, I had gone to see the show with my mother as well. That means I've seen it three times. Though I was in awe of the technical aspects of the show the first time I saw it, I was emotionally moved by the story this time. After all, it's a story about love lost.
I'm still working at Questra Consulting and have been excited with the variety of projects I've worked on. Especially the current one at Kodak. I help create the back-end of a system that allows people to submit photographs (for reprinting and enlargements, plain or in decorative templates) over the Internet and print the pictures on photographic paper, photograph album covers and wine bottle labels which get mailed back to the customer.
What a drain to my finances this year had been! With buying a new laptop computer, saving for retirement, buying a car, paying rent all year, and travelling as much as I like, this is the first year I carried a balance on my credit card all year.
Colleen's going to travel for two months across the country next year in a trailer with her parents and step-uncle. She's asked me to join her. You know, I've thought about doing that before, but didn't find it worthwhile to do it alone. Now, Colleen conjures images of traveling across the country--hiking, camping, whitewater rafting, and doing other things I know we'd both enjoy.
This is the best time of my life to do the things I'd really want to do. If something is really important to, go for it!
Happy holidays and best wishes for the upcoming year!