January 24th, 2015


This past week

Tuesday i drove into work and we had the iteration kick-off. Long meetings but good because i am not having to worry about deadlines and commitments.

Wednesday was a work-at-home day during which i had a mild migraine-like headache in the quality of the symptoms, although (thank heavens) not in the intensity. I worked throug it, and then in the evening my sinuses reacted as if i was having an allergic reaction to something over a ten minute period.

Thursday i had a commitment for the evening but didn't feel up to it. I ended up bailing. While i wasn't feeling great physically, i was feeling somewhat giddy with getting to do my new job. I'm not sure what the quality was that has changed, but i think i am letting go of the vigilance that has always been with me. My vacation week included more sleep than i recall, i'm sleeping more now. While there may be a low level cold driving it, i'm resting more soundly.

The fuzzy head was gone Friday morning, but there's still some congestion. I slept late (i think i slept late on Thursday morning too) and we had cleaners coming at 8:30. This is the second of three Groupon cleanings: two people for two hours. I'm using the extra elbow grease to beat back entropy, get past what we manage to get done irregularly. Christine decamped, and i started work on tidying the deck, including caring for the plants. The cleaners were 30 minutes late. I pointed them at cleaning the fridge and the shower curtain. The two hours passed incredibly quickly, but i was just about done on the deck when they were ready to go.

I then drove to the city to meet up with a friend from college. It was lovely, but unsettling in some odd way. I think a little of me felt like i was being seen with the ghostly double of my much younger self beside me. That young lady was desperate for friends and connection and i'm pretty sure i dramatized things for JA to Be Interesting. I took her and her son to Fort Point where we met up with a friend of hers who lives in Oakland. None of them had been to Fort Point, a pre-Civil War fort built right at the Golden Gate: the bridge was built over it years later. It is not tourist-packed, it has incredible views, waves break right there. We saw surfers in the late afternoon, a seal or two, a flock of pelicans presumably celebrating the herring run. A little ways away is the Warming Hut with a coffee bar and national park gift shop. We participated in a cannon demonstration -- i think i was almost sworn into the Union Army, problematic in a couple ways -- and climbed the three stories of spiraling stairs twice. They were all delighted with the location.

I left to drive home watching sunset and fog play with the light along ocean beach, the grey-green surf getting in a good game with the light, too. I bought some fast food, intending to go to my evening event, but decided to bail.

It's still winter. I'm not pushing myself.

Last night and today i've been a bit of a lump. I posted some stuff on freecycle and i'm wondering where the time has gone. There's something at Meeting tonight, and i think i'm going to skip the potluck half.


It's a little different but i'm giving it a go.


Drunken Botanist

I'm enjoying the book The Drunken Botanist and last night, on the ride home from the city, i was stuck in lousy traffic listening to a litany of lemon and bitter and licorice herbs, and magical names i just barely recognize like Campari and Strega and Pastis. I stopped at the grocery store and saw some names, but the bottles are big and i don't know if the purchase is going to be welcome or not. So, I promptly started research at home and now have a list of things that sound like they might be appealing and have really good ratings.

So. Now what?

I wonder if i can buy miniatures at a liquor store. I suppose i could find a bar that is well stocked for cocktails: maybe at a good restaurant?

Hmm. There's actually a 4.5 star Yelp rated (31 reviews) liquor store in easy walking distance. Near our comfy Mexican place. Hmm. Maybe not salmon tonight.

Vittone The Original Fernet Menta Amaro Liqueur 80 proof (40%) minty bitters
Liquore Strega 80 proof (40%) slightly sweet, semi-viscous, and has a bold, complex flavor with strong minty or coniferous notes
Cynar Artichoke liqueur (apertif & digestif) 33.0 proof
Benedictine 80 proof (40%)
Green Chartreuse (110 proof or 55%) It is very sweet, but becomes both spicy and pungent.
Campari 20-28% quintessential astringent
Aperol 11% cf Campari 20-28% orange, rhubarb, and other herbs.
Yellow Chartreuse (80 proof or 40%), which has a milder and sweeter flavour and aroma.
Fernet Branca minty bitters (78.0 proof)

Licorice/Sambuca/pastis/absinthe/Herbs de Majorca

Luxardo Sambuca dei Cesari (76.0 proof)
Romana Sambuca liqueur (84.0 proof)
Pernod Anis Liqueur 80 proof (40%)