Tag Archives: Lake Tahoe

Undecided

15 Sep

I feel like I should explain my long absence to you, my readers.  And really, there’s no real reason for it.  And I don’tDMB-balloon visit 022 want to get into a whole big thing.  So I’ll skip it–cause I can.

And I feel like I should talk about my visit to Nevada, the DMB concert (great seats!) and the Reno Balloon Races (fun and is it possible to make this an annual adventure for us?!) but it would take a long time.  And I just spent three days uploading, editing, labeling, and commenting on maybe hundreds of pictures from the week.  And I don’t think I could remember everything.  And I don’t want to have to sit here for half the morning trying to get it all down, when I want to run the 11907763_10207633660144071_7762108476951423202_nneighborhood and rain is forecast soon.  OK, mmaybe I’ll post some of the pics on this blog so you get an idea.

So just know the decade-plus wait was not unwarranted, the balloons will probably go down as my favorite moment of 2015, with the Brandi concert, DMB, my parents’ June visit, and our first visit to SLC rounding out the top five times of 2015.  This paragraph is more for me (on December 31st) then you.

Anyway, I have a problem.

I guess I’m being a little apathetic.  And it’s probably out of fear.  But as a loyal person, I don’t want to get locked intoDMB-balloon visit 036 the wrong thing.  I never again want to feel miserable, trapped, and stuck.  As such, I’m not making any commitments or decisions.  Which ironically, is also a form of being trapped.  Here’s the things:

I HATE not seeing Cool very long on weekdays.  I enjoy hanging out with her.  I like running 11944908_10207474531919882_1900213810_nwith her, and also know she gets it done when I’m with her.  I like eating meals with her.  It’s easier to have an equal amount of chores when we’re together.

I like having the entire sunny part of the work day NOT being at work.  It feels like I have more time.  And businesses are open if I have to run errands.  And I see the kitties more.12004734_10207633662344126_2347145285946816352_n

I LIKE having both Saturday and Sunday off EVERY week.  All day long, two full days in a row.  I’ve NEVER had that before, and I’m hesitant to give it up.  I will be so sad and jealous if Cool still gets them off and I have to go to work.

11997021_10207474432557398_305078299_nMy coworkers range from dud to douche.  And I don’t feel a part of any team, but I don’t have open hostility with them either-I just go about my business.  It’s not optimal, but it’s fine.

I know my boss would screw me over in half a second.  But I don’t have to deal with DMB-balloon visit 060management all that much.

12002107_10207135843975952_8006920316423650758_n

I thought I had made my decision to leave and find a day job.  BUT I actually LIKE the work itself.  Pretty much all of it.  There’s no part I hate (except maybe for DMB-balloon visit 070splitting the stool sample, b/c it’s creepy) and that’s never happened to me before.  I wouldn’t want to take a chance of getting into something else and not liking it, or hating a part of it.

I’m afraid of applying and interviewing for jobs, because I feel like my education and experience aren’t good for anything but veterinary work.Reno Balloon Races 008

I absolutely do NOT want to work at vet hospitals anymore and will try to only go back in emergency (financial) situations.

My finances require at least 25 hours per week, and that’s very tight (maybe impossible when my 3rd undergrad loan comes off deferment), 30 would be better.

130 AMRight now I am an “as needed” (PRN) employee.  And they’ve thus far (5 months) given me a very consistent schedule of 25 hrs/wk, but that could change at any point.  I can work 25 hrs or 0 hours, it just depends who else is on vacation, sick, or quits.

As a PRN employee, I can get ANY day off.  Because I’m not guaranteed work at all, I can always say no if asked to work.  It’s a double-edged sword.

As a PRN, I may have to work some weekends, just to meet the hours.  This is them doing me a Reno Balloon Races 014favor (not sarcasm) and trying to keep my hours up, even if the demand isn’t quite there.

If I go full-time, I get health insurance, extra pay for working nights, and maybe even a raise (they can count my experience).

11998342_10207485094263934_1273252602_nIf I go full-time, I will see Cool 30 minutes a day (if she doesn’t have to work late, and if traffic allows it) and I won’t like that at ALL.

I’m nervous about going full-time, because 40 hours a week seems like too much.  30 would be perfect, but my current employer rarely offers that (though Cool had that and she’s now Reno Balloon Races 028upstairs).  And I don’t want my life to become ALL work again.  I don’t want to be tired all the time.  And I don’t want my week days to only be all about working.  I also wouldn’t want to be pressured to work over 40 hours–I’ve been there before.

I could apply to other jobs, but I’d have to hope to get something with just 5 months experience.  Also, I’d have to take my chances with the schedule, the location, and the work itself.  What if it’s 21175298470_8865b1eb52_cworse???  I also wouldn’t want to burn my bridges at the current job, because I would want to fall back on it if at all possible.

So there you have it.  I am waffling.

I know I need the money and stability, but I’m just very hesitant and commitment-phobic right now.  My inclination is to wait and see, but my finances may demand sooner action.

I hate to say it, because I loved it for so long and was so passionate about it, but the veterinary world scarred me.

Tactics of the Tahoe Squirrel

10 Aug

Summer is starting to wrap up–at least here.  And it reminds me of swimming at Lake Tahoe.  A big part of the swimming is either elbowing for space on the beach (California side) or hiking to and from the water (Nevada side).  A second huge aspect of swimming in Lake Tahoe is the chipmunks and squirrels.  These guys are no strangers to people–and especially the beach snacks they inevitably bring with them.

sqirrel baby

Here is their procedure:

-First they send a small cute shy one out.  It’s small, it’s uncertain.  It’s a crowd-pleaser.

-“Look he’s hungry,” you and your group say, “awwww–give the little guy a cracker.”

-Tiny squirrel responds, “Yum, I’ve never had a cracker!”

-Then there’s 3 squirrels standing in various places looking at your group.

-You throw a couple of more crackers out–not wanting to be unfair.

-Then things escalate a little and the big squirrels are stealing all the crackers from the little cute ones.squirrel fight

-All the time, more and more squirrels are appearing out of seemingly nowhere.

-You begin to think you’d better cut them off because the small squirrels aren’t fast or tough enough to get ANY.

-You begin to think maybe they’ve done this before and are probably getting fat.

-More and more are showing up and you and your group realize you are outnumbered.

-Then, realizing feeding time is over, the squirrels are looking through your bag trying to get their own crackers.

-They form a squirrel posse’ surrounding your group and using intimidation tactics.squirrel group

-Then, they have sticks and rocks and are threatening you for crackers.

-They have brass knuckles and surround you demanding crackers.

squirrel war

Well, you get my point.  There is no such thing as one lone cute little squirrel.  So the locals quickly learn not to feed the little creatures.  But we do laugh when we see visitors (or stupid Californians who are always inept) feeding them and the resulting fall out when they do.  Oh and fair warning–don’t touch them–they carry zoonotic disease.  True story.

I MUST have it!

12 Jul

Jaycee Lee Dugard’s book, that is.  I am going to a bookstore this Thursday to find, and purchase this book.  Since I lived in the area she was kidnapped, I feel like I could have easily been her.  I was just lucky. . .  I will let you know how it is when I’ve read it!

Jaycee Lee Dugard [posted 9-2-09]

17 Jan

Here is a half-poem/half list of my feelings on the Jaycee Lee Dugard story:


Infuriated with the case of Jaycee Lee Dugard.  Mostly because it never should have happened.

.. ..

Saddened that Phillip Garrido’s first wife didn’t press charges for battery or for the time when he tried to gouge her eyes out with a safety pin.

.. ..

Horrified he kidnapped a woman, dragged her across the California-Nevada state line and repeatedly raped her in his “sex palace.”

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Terrified that Phillip was calm and collected when a Reno police officer stumbled upon his rapist’s lair.  He told the officer she was his girlfriend, as she screamed for help in terror.

.. ..

Exasperated the judge in the Callaway-Hall kidnap/rape case ruled to exclude the first attempted kidnapping, meaning Garrido was not on the books as a repeat offender.


Astonished that “Crazy Phil” only did 11 years of a 50 year sentence when he did such a violent crime, and had prior offenses.

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Angered that Nancy, (obviously disturbed) married Garrido while he was in a Kansas prison.

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Incredulous that Garrido was transferred, mid-sentence, from a maximum security facility in Kansas to Carson City, where they so obviously dropped the ball.

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Astounded that Carson City not only released Garrido on his 4th parole attempt, but they let him leave the state and go live with his mother in California.

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Furious staying away from children was not a term of Garrido’s parole, because the woman he raped for 5 hours straight was 25 at the time.

Pissed that Garrido drugged and raped a 14 year old (4 years prior to Jaycee), and was released because she didn’t testify against him.

.. ..

Disturbed that an 11 year old Jaycee Lee Dugard was grabbed (by a woman) from her bus stop, in the sight of her father.

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Alarmed that the Garridos swiped a child in plain daylight, then were able to just drive home in the same car without lawful intervention.

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Amazed that with the palpable fear in Lake Tahoe, neighbors who saw Jaycee Lee didn’t recognize her as a missing child.

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Startled that neighbors or law enforcement had no idea of the “secret backyard,” when it was visible on google maps.

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Disheartened that nearby residents left well enough alone, and learned to live with tents and sheds, weird noises, and children in the backyard of a known sexual predator.

.. ..

Shocked that Garrido masturbated while looking at children in parks, schools, restaurants, and drive-ins.

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Stunned Garrido’s mother and his wife stood by while Phil harbored and raped a child.

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Flabbergasted that a parole officer checks a sex offender with a sketchy, kidnapper’s past, but does not walk through the entire house and yard on every visit.

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Staggered that Nancy Garrido still kept Jaycee Lee captive when her husband was thrown back in prison for a parole violation.

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Infuriated that a person could get a 50 year sentence, be released on parole after only 11 years, BREAK the terms of that parole, then be re-released in a matter of months.

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Dismayed to think about the emotional, and physical damage that must have occurred when Phil made Jaycee Lee pregnant at 14 years old, then made her give birth in a filthy tent–twice.

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Troubled that when children and prostitutes were disappearing near a known sex offender’s home and work, nobody thought to connect the dots and investigate.

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Affronted by the fact Jaycee Lee Dugard worked for Garrido’s printing business, met with clients, spoke with them on the phone, and wrote e-mails, yet no one recognized her as anyone but “Alyssa.”

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Disappointed the system lost track of Garrido’s sex offender status when someone DID call the police on Phil.

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Upset that people thought “Crazy Phil’s” crazy behavior and religious ranting were harmless.

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Confused at how Garrido (a registered sex offender, who wore a GPS monitor) was able to parade 2 young girls around town, and even take them to a birthday party, and no one sensed anything out of the ordinary.

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Wonders if anyone in Antioch reads the news when I hear stories of Jaycee going to the store or a college campus with Garrido.  Especially when her kidnapping was all over the news in Nevada, a whole state away.

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Anxious to think “Crazy Phil” was only caught because he wanted to be.  Why else would he bring a kidnapped girl and two children of rape to a college campus and a parole meeting?

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Revolted at the audacity it takes to not only plead innocent to 18 years of crimes, but to call the story “heartwarming.”

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Annoyed when I hear the media call Nancy Garrido the “true” monster because she allowed this to happen.

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Upset some members of the media are blaming the victim for not escaping or trying to reach out in some way.

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Tired of hearing psychiatrists and media diagnose Dugard with Stockholm Syndrome, despite never meeting her.

Hungry for more facts about the case and all the people involved.

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Disgusted that informants are now requesting the media pay for any information.

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Eager to see what Jaycee Lee Dugard looks like today, after having grown up seeing her missing posters.

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Excited to hear what Jaycee Lee Dugard has to say about the entire situation.

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Suspenseful to find out if the Garridos will get the maximum sentence and really suffer for what they did.

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Hopeful that Jaycee Lee Dugard and her two (unfortunately named) children, Angel and Starlight can fully recover from their ordeal.

 

Traumatized [posted 9-1-09]

17 Jan

I’m not certain why I feel so invested in the Jaycee Lee Dugard case.  Maybe the event traumatized me in my childhood.  Maybe it’s because it could have easily been me.  Maybe I feel so strongly, because it was the first really terrible thing I knew about–it was the end of my innocence.

.. ..

I remember when Jaycee Lee Dugard was kidnapped.  She was 11 and I was 6.  I identified with the girl:  We were both blond, both petite girls who were in elementary school, both had slightly big front teeth, both of us loved cats, both had a sprinkling of freckles, both of us had unusual names.  When she was taken, Jaycee Lee was wearing an outfit I regularly wore—pink stretch pants and a pink shirt.  She was snatched from Tahoe—I went to Tahoe with my family often.  The face on that poster haunted me.  It was familiar, and reminded me of what could happen—how vulnerable I really was.  She was taken while her father watched—how could I possibly feel safe again?  I felt as if she was just a little more unlucky than me—that time.  I suppose everyone felt this way.  Most little girls fit that description, no little girl thinks she will be taken away from everything.

.. ..

I also remember the resulting panic in the community.  The event was splashed all over the news, everyone was talking about it, parents in the area went into protective mode.  Fear was palpable.  There were pink ribbons and “missing” posters, featuring that little girl, on every doorway, window, and bulletin board in Lake Tahoe.  I don’t think there is a single person from Northern Nevada or the nearby California area (1991 to 1995, especially) that wouldn’t recognize Jaycee’s smiling face.  For years afterward, Tahoe looked for any sign of Jaycee Lee.  Every young girl (and her parents) worried SHE could be next.

.. ..

Things changed when Jaycee Lee Dugard disappeared.  The area was no longer a rural area free from sickos and predators.  Fun at the lake or on the slopes was no longer as carefree as it had been.  Kids were no longer safe to go anywhere (even the bus stop) alone.  They weren’t even particularly safe if their parents were watching.  I had to constantly hold someone’s hand when we visited Tahoe or Reno.  New reports gave suggestions on kidnap avoidance, stranger danger.

.. ..

I ALWAYS wondered what happened to Jaycee Lee Dugard.  The case was close to my heart, and also piqued my curiosity.  When I found out some answers, I was relieved.  Not especially relieved she was alive (because maybe death would have been a blessed end to her suffering) but relieved to KNOW.  Now, I’m troubled at the circumstances that led to her miserable 18 years of captivity.  That’s the next blog though.