Monday, September 26, 2011

Eat Drink and Be Merry!

I keep talking about cookies and vacation and you all are probably wondering where the heck we went on vacation!

Last year was my first Gorge and Dave Matthews Band experience. And let me tell you, it was AMAZING. I have seen Dave before, but the seeing them at the Gorge is an experience you must have if you ever get the opportunity. The sunsets are beautiful and the music is awesome. How much better can it get with an outdoor venue overlooking the Columbia River with wind turbines in the background? Not much.

See, told you it was beautiful. Needless to say, we started off our trip with a flight to Oregon to see Ryan's Dad and Barb. Hi Dean and Barb! Oh, wait. I didn't tell you. Ryan is a pilot, so he flew us up and down the pacific northwest that week. How cool, right? Super cool. Side story - the first time he ever took me flying this girl got sick. Not just a little, ALL OVER. Totally embarrassing right? I took Dramamine thinking it would work, but boy was I wrong. I think it made it even worse. Needless to say, after that flight (I don't even think we were in the air five minutes!), I went to see my doctor and she perscribed me these patches you wear behind you ear. Let me tell you, they are a miracle! I don't feel anything and my stomach hasn't hurt yet. Knock on wood! Yes, they give you dry mouth and make you kinda woozy, but it's well worth the other stuff that can happen. Motion sickness is awful, and hopefully you don't have it like I do. It's the worst.

Okay, enough of that, back to vacation. So, we went up to Oregon for a day, spent the night and then got up super early the next morning to make the next flight up to Quincy, Washington. We made it safe and sound, got to the campground and set everything up. It was defintely warm the few days were were there, but it was a nice change from the year before where it was quite chilly. The campground is about a mile away from the venue, but they have a bus that takes you to and from, so that is really nice. The campground has a little cafe with pretty good food, the showers are usually hot (I had one super hot shower and one freezing shower) and they clean the port-a-potties throughout the day, so they are pretty clean. This year I realized that if I got up early enough, I could get a hot shower and a freshly cleaned port-a-potty. I'm the crazy girl who got up at 6:30 am to shower. Well worth it if you ask me.

That Friday, Saturday and Sunday, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves from camping, to hanging out with some awesome people and best of all, rocking out every night to Dave Matthews The weather was perfect and you didn't even need a light jacket or sweater until you were walking back to the bus at 11pm. This year was not just Dave, there were other bands playing throughout the day, which was really cool. You could go see a few bands, go back to the campground to grab a bite to eat and then head back to see Dave. There were a lot of bands, and we needed up seeing TR3, John Butler Trio, The Roots, Dispatch and we even saw an acoustic Dave and Tim set too. All awesome and all great, but they always saved the best for last - DAVE MATTHEWS BAND! They played my favorite song, Grey Street, and well, honestly, they played a lot of my favorite songs. But, Grey Street is my all time favorite. We got close to the stage, rocked out, sung out loud had a great time.

listening to a little John Butler Trio before Dave came on!

night one!

night three. Guess I forgot to take a picture of night two. oops.

encore during night three - we escaped the crowed to use the bathroom before our hike back to the buses.

Nothing like 20,000+ fans to get you in the mood! Everyone is super nice and usually pretty good to deal with - there are always those really drunk people, but for the most part, people are fine. Well, there was the super super drunk guy who decided to relive himself next to me on night three. GROSS. Other then that, they are all nice, I promise. After three days of Dave and camping, it was time for us to head back to Oregon for a few more days of vacation and relaxation. We loaded up the plane and headed back to Oregon. My favorite part of the flight is seeing all the wind turbines. You should see how many pictures I took of those things. Here are a few pictures from our flight!

Mt. Shasta on our first leg to Oregon

ooooh ahhhh pretty

flight from Washington to Oregon. Look at all those turbines. They were EVERYWHERE!
 We got back to Oregon and spent a few days there. It was great to finally take a real shower and relax for a few days. Ryan worked his booty off doing things around the house while Barb and I went into Bend and wandered around Sisters. It was such a great time and I always enjoy going to visit them. I love Oregon, it just smells good up there. I don't know what it is, but it just really smells fresh and piney. Is piney even a word? Well, it is now. I did get a head cold while I was up there and was kinda out of commission for a few days, but that didn't stop us. Our last night in town we went to this super cute restaurant out in Camp Sherman called Kokanee Cafe. Right along a river and the food was good. I had cedar planked salmon with grape risotto. The risotto sounds funny doesn't it? But adding fresh grapes into it added this subtle sweetness that was just right. So good. I thought that since I could taste my dinner that I would be able to taste some of Ryan's super peanut butter and chocolate dessert. Nope. Nothing. Maybe a hint of chocolate came through, but that's about it. Darn. It sure was pretty though.

kinda dark photo, but mmm pb mouse with dark chocolate coating and a nutter butter on top! I wish I could have tasted this one.

pretty sunset during our post dinner walk near the cafe

After a great trip, we headed back home to California. It was good to get away, but it's always good to get home too. We got home on a Thursday and Ryan was headed back down to San Luis Obispo to bring the plane back to his brother and asked me if I wanted to go too. At first, I thought it would best to stay home, rest since I still wasn't feeling good, but then I changed my mind. Live life on the edge and fly to SLO for the weekend! I am sure glad I did and it was a great time. We hiked Bishops Peak (where I almost gave up since I thought I was going to lose my lunch, but we made it!), went to some of our favorite places, saw the Cal Poly men's soccer team play on Sunday and I felt like I was a college student all over again. Okay, not really, but it's fun to pretend. Things are still pretty much the same, but it's always so weird to go back and explore your old stomping grounds for a weekend. We didn't end up getting home until super late that Sunday and I knew I would be paying for it come the next week getting back into the swing of things at work, but it was well worth it. I couldn't have asked for a better weekend, a better vacation and a better captain to spend it all with.

                                                        Here's to next year, captain!

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