Monday, November 12, 2007

Big Sur...again!

Great hikes, great times...And I'll be going there again this weekend with Aunt Barb and Aunt Marianne :)

Monday, November 5, 2007

What's new, finally

It's been awhile! I get lazy about uploading pictures and thinking of stuff to write and sitting there writing it (maybe it's a good thing that I decided not to pursue journalism...)

What's new with me in a nutshell:

~ The sun sets at 5pm now :(
~ This weekend I visited the Pinnacle National Monument and it is GORGEOUS! There are huge orange-ish mountains of rock that made me want to take rock-climbing classes because they would be so cool to climb. I didn't see any Condors but they are released into the wild at Pinnacle. We hiked around and into some caves which were completely dark. Zero light. By the light of a cell phone we climbed up and through a cave (except for Jeremy and Evan who decided they were too good for the cell phone and did it without). Super cool hike! Parts of it reminded me of Outback Australia.
~ I auditioned for the Vagina Monologues at CSUMB and I got a part! This will be my 2nd year in the production. I'll be performing "In Memory of Her Face" with 2 other girls. I'm looking forward to meeting everyone in the cast and working with a hopefully wonderful group of women who all care deeply about ending violence against women. I couldn't resist auditioning again!
~ see the stuff on Dia de los Muertos below!

Día de los Muertos (Nov. 1st and 2nd)

Chávez elementary had a beautiful celebration for Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) on Friday Nov. 2. It was the first celebration of this day that I have ever seen and I was inspired to witness such a welcoming tradition of honoring the dead. It’s different from anything I’ve seen in my culture. I’ll try to explain the basic idea, but anyone who wants to add/correct me please feel free to post. This is the day for our loved ones to come back and be with us for one more day, and to enjoy whatever it was that they loved in life. People put special gifts of food, flowers, incense, etc. on altars for family members who have passed. People decorate skulls and eat pan de muerto (bread of the dead) and in general celebrate. Even though the undertone is serious and emotional with a high level of respect, comedy is also used. Death is seen as a continuation into a different stage of life – and this stems from indigenous traditions as well. The women I work with did a play for the whole school and it was very funny/lighthearted, but did a great job at communicating the meaning of Día de los Muertos.

Ballet Folklórico dance group performing after school. They do traditional Mexican dances, and that night featured dances from Michoacán, Mexico.

Video clip of Ballet Folklórico:

The old-man dance!

The actresses of the Dia de los Muertos play

They did a remarkable job and the school play was a hit!

El Altar

celebrating the dead who come back on this special day to enjoy their favorite things in life

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Big Sur

We drove the Pacific Coast Hwy to Big Sur today. I was too carsick to keep my eyes open on the way there (winding climbing roads combined with a hangover) but it was a magnificent view of the ocean, mountains, and rocks on the way home. Very soothing and poetic. At Big Sur we hiked to this gorge in the pictures. We had to climb over a lot of slippery rocks to get there! It was so rejuvenating to jump in the water! I could only swim for about 30 seconds because it was sooooooooooooooo cold. I will hopefully never complain about Hamlin Lake again when we go skiing! All the water here in Cali is super cold. DO NOT be fooled by the California myth. It is not that warm here!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

San Francisco ~ Love Fest weekend!

I'm not going to write much today, but let the pictures tell the stories. I had a great weekend! (p.s. I can't seem to place the pictures strategically on the website...)