Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Balboa Park

Me, my mom, my dad and my brother J.D. went to Balboa park on Memorial Day and walked around. Balboa Park is a great big park right in downtown San Diego. It's really pretty. It was first built in the early 1900s to host the California-Panama Exposition and now it's just a place to go for people to hang out. There are museums, walking paths, gardens, a dog park and theatres. Here are some pictures:

A walking path that winds down through one of the rivines at the park.

The Museum of Man.

One of the bell towers on The Museum of Man.

Me and J.D. under one of the arches at the Organ Pavillion.

The Old Globe Theatre

If anyone's ever in SD, this park is a must see. What did you guys do for the holiday?

Monday, May 22, 2006

Moving On

I noticed that nobody commented on my plea for advice post. I figure either my blog has become so boring that no one reads it anymore or no one wanted to give advise because if I took it and irreparably damaged my life, I would've blamed the advise giver. No matter, The universe has a way of sorting these things out. Gabe was suppose to spend some time with me this weekend, working on some relationship stuff (for those of you who know the whole story, we were suppose to go look at the car) but he had an "emergency" and couldn't make it. I told him I don't want to see him anymore until he's prepared with a solution to some of our problems. I'm pretty sure that means I won't see him anymore. I ended up coming up with some good ideas for my meeting on Thursday all on my own and my boss had some good ones too so I'm feeling a little better abouth that. I talked to my boss on Friday and we worked out a solution to my budget woes that should alleviate it a little. I'm also going to schedule some time with a guidance couclior at my school to see if I can figure out what I'm going to do with my life. So I don't have any real answers yet but I feel like I'm on my way to getting them. The thing that I'm really excited about is I'm moving next week and I get to live right by the beach. I'm going to be just like that girl in the picture laying on the sand everyday except I don't have such a mannish face. I'm stoked about getting settled into my own place again. I'll post before and after pictures of my VERY tiny apartment for you guys. All I can say is good thing I don't have a lot of stuff.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Stuck in a Rut

Lately I've been feeling really immobile. Like someone put me in an invisible box and I can't move beyond the confines of it. Right now my life feels like it's divided into 5 categories, 4 of which are not satisfactory to me. They are as follows: Gabe, Work, Budget, Education, Religion. I feel frustrated in all of those areas except religion. When I focus on going to church or participating in church based activities I feel relaxed and calm but the reality is I have other things I need to deal with and that stuff is frustrating me.
Gabe: I guess Gabe and I are doing pretty good. We've moved on in our relationship where I feel happy and fairly secure but now it feels like we've just stopped. When I tell him that I feel this way he just says something like, "I know how you feel but we're working at it and it'll come around." I know my mom and my sister, upon reading this are just going to say, "Break up with him then, you've waited long enough." But I can't bring myself to do that because things really have gotten better and he does seem to be working hard at our relationship, I just don't see any results yet. It's hard for me to know if I should be patient or cut my losses. I don't want to do either. I just want an answer as to where my life is going right now.
Work: I am in charge of all of the marketing, advertising and overall growth of a small insurance office. I am a very good sales person and I usually really enjoy my job. Lately though, things have slowed down a lot around here and it seems like no matter how hard I work at it I can't get it to pick up. Again, I feel like I'm working very hard but not getting any results. We're having a planning meeting on Thursday morning and I'm suppose to come to it with some new ideas of things we could try to pick up production. It is Tuesday afternoon and I got nothin'. I can't think of one single thing. My whole job description is pretty much to have good ideas and I don't have any. I feel like I come to work for 8 hours everyday and I don't accomplish anything but I don't know how to change that.
Budget: I am moving into my new apartment in 3 weks and I am so poor. I thought the couple months I stayed with my parents would give me a chance to get ahead money wise but I ended up using the extra money to take care of some overlooked things (Lexi's surgery, tires on the Jeep, visiting my sister) and instead I'm more broke leaving their house than when I moved in. The part that's really frustrating me is that with the added expenses that are about to come up for me, I don't see any way to get back on top in this area either. It's looking like I'm not going to get a bonus at work any time soon because I can't sell anything. I'm stuck!
Education: I am going to school this fall as a senior in college. I have been in college a very long time and I have no degree. I have enough credits for a doctorate but I change my mind so much that all my classes add up to pretty much nothing. It's REALLY time for me to decide what I want to be when I grow up but I'm having so much trouble with it. I really want to be a nurse but the classes are very time consuming and I don't think I could hold down a full time job at the same time as nursing school. I have to have a full time job because I'm a grown up and I have to pay my rent. I could graduate with a degree in Literature within about 1 year but I don't know what I would do with that once I graduated. I don't have any experience in any fields that have to do with a literature degree and I don't think I could get a job. I could follow my current career course and get a marketing degree but I don't see the point since I don't really like marketing. I just do it because I'm good at it and it pays my bills (sort of). I already have a good job in marketing and if I'm just going to stick with it I don't really need a degree, I already have enough experience to back me up in this field and more college would be a waste of time.
What should I do? I know a lot of people who love me and a lot of strangers read this blog and I'm open to any ideas. What do you guys think?

Monday, May 08, 2006

Small Town Living

I'm staying with my parents right now until the end of the month while I'm waiting to move out into my own place. They live in a small, farming town here in Southern California. The house we live in is nice and is sitting on 8 acres of land. My dog, Lexi has a hay day whenever we're up there because she can run around like a mad woman and have some fun with the other dogs. There is also a doggie door installed at the house so she can come and go as she pleases. She loves that too. Last night, Gabe and I were out getting ice cream for the family and when we pulled into our neighborhood we noticed a horrible stench. I walked into the house and my mom said, "I have some bad news for you." I said, "How bad? Is this going to spoil my ice cream?" And she said, "Yes. Lexi got sprayed by a skunk." That little piece of information didn't ruin my ice cream but it certainly kept me busy for the rest of the night. My mom had closed the dog door so Lexi couldn't get back in the house so I went out to find her. When I called her she came right to me and she smelled HORRIBLE! My dog is a Boxer and their breed is called that for a reason. When they are in a fight or playing, they lead with their front paws and swat at their apponent much like a human boxer does in a fight. Lexi's front legs and face were covered in skunk juice and she was coughing and sneezing. I felt so bad for her. Gabe and I ran to the grocery store and bought 5 cans of tomato paste. We came back home, threw the dog in the tub and slathered the thick red stuff all over her. About half way through she looked like a casualty of war. That tomato paste is potent and it made my forearms break out in a rash. We got her all cleaned up and she's almost back to normal. The only two problems are she still smells a little on her paws and nose and all of the areas of her body that are suppose to be white (neck, chest, feet and muzzle) are now stained pink. She looks like an Oompa Loompa dog. I think my brother J.D. had it right when he took one look at her and said, "Lexi really does do better as an apartment dog."

Friday, May 05, 2006

The Beautiful Stranger

I am very interested in hauntings, ghosts and paranormal activity. So many people have claimed to have had a brush with people from "the other side" (myself included) for it to just be a fluke. The thing that really intrigues me is the mystery in it. What are these people doing here? What are they looking for? What are they trying to tell us? Are they just confused about where to go and they get stuck here or do they have an actual purpose? I've heard credible stories that support both of those theories. I'm a big fan of respected paranormal experts like Hanz Holtzer and Sylvia Brown. I love to read ghost stories and I really love history. San Diego Has a rich history and some of the most famous haunted spots in the country. During October, you can take a double decker bus around town and take a "Haunted Tour" of San Diego. They take you to all the good spots; The Whaley House, The El Campo Santo Cemetary and the Hotel Del Coronado. These spots all have a detailed, fascinating history. You can read a short description and see pictures of San Diego's most popular haunts at http://gothere.com/sandiego/Ghosts/. One of the most famous ghosts in sand Diego is that of Kate Morgan from the Hotel del Coronado. The hotel is a huge, sprawling place right on the sea that has been carefully maintained so it looks the same today as it did when it was built in the late 1800s. You can read more about that at http://www.hoteldel.com/about/.

Here's the story of Kate Morgan that I copied from http://www.geocities.com/victorianlace23/hotels_coronado_KM.html:

What is known about Kate Morgan is this: she traveled with her husband, Thomas, using the alias of Lottie. A. Bernard. Thomas used the assumed named of Dr. M.C. Anderson. Together, they made a a somewhat decent living as scam artists. "Lottie", being a "natural beauty" (a term that the coroner would later use to describe her), would flirt with young men. Once the men were interested in her and wished to court her, she told them that they would first need to obtain the approval of her brother (the role played by Thomas). To do this--they soon discovered--meant that they would need to play poker with him. When the would-be suitor had been hoodwinked and swindled for all his worth, Lottie dropped him and quickly moved on to the next.

After some time, however, Kate began to yearn for more out of life, and she told Thomas that she wanted to have a house and to raise a family. Thomas had no desire to have a family, but he did placate Kate's desires to own a home by purchasing a house in Los Angeles. He continued to try to earn a living by traveling in search of high stakes poker games, while under yet another alias, Kate began working as a housekeeper in order to earn enough money to live on.

Thomas began to travel the circuit more and more, and during one of his tours from Iowa down to San Diego, he picked up Kate in Los Angeles en route. It was on this train ride from Los Angeles to San Diego that Kate told Thomas she was pregnant. Thomas was not happy about this news and he and Kate argued on the train. Thomas then left the train in Orange, CA. Kate went on to San Diego, checked in at the Hotel del Coronado, and waited for her husband to join her, but he never arrived.

Kate spent the next few days doing the following:

1) She checked other hotels in the area to see if Tom had check-ed in at any of them, but found no trace of him.

2) She performed an apparent abortion on herself by taking a huge amount of quinine (a known abortifacient of that time). Hotel employees reported that she had appeared pale, ill, and very unhappy during her stay. The large bottle of quinine was found in her room following her death.

3) And finally, it is know that Kate ventured into San Diego, and purchased a gun and shells.Five days after Kate Morgan checked into the Hotel del Coronado, she was found dead on a set of stairs just off the veranda that lead down to the beach, a single bullet wound to her right temple. The gun lay near Kate's body, two steps below. Blood was on the gun as well as on her hand.

Kate's death was immediately ruled as suicide, and for years this was the accepted cause of death. It wasn't until 1990, when Alan May published a book called, "The Legend of Kate Morgan: The Search for the Ghost of the Hotel del Coronado", that another theory was suggested.

May, an attorney who specialized in murder cases, concluded that Kate did not take her own life, but rather, that she was murdered by her husband, Thomas. He supports his theory by citing some compelling evidence, such as the fact that the bullet in Kate's head was of a different caliber than the bullets for the gun she purchased in San Diego. Also, the positioning of her body on the steps was not consistent with a suicide, suggesting that she was shot first, then dumped on the stairs--a gun with her blood on it was planted nearby to give the appearance of a suicide. May also suggests that a maid who worked at the hotel at the time, and may have befriended Kate, also disappeared the day after Kate's funeral. One story further proposes that the body of the maid was found by hotel staff and was removed in a covert attempt to keep publicity and anxiety at a minimum.

To this day, the legend of Kate Morgan still elicites curiosity and sparks interest. Since Kate's death in 1892, numerous claims of paranormal activity have been reported in the room where Kate stayed (room 302, now number 3312), and other areas of the hotel. Claims range from murmuring sounds to electrical problems, flickering lights, and unusual scents; from curtains that seem to blow in the wind despite the fact that the window is closed, to unexplained voices; or objects that move and televisions that turn on and off by themselves. Moreover, many people have claimed that they actually have seen the ghost of Kate Morgan, themselves.Over the years, numerous paranormal researchers have used their latest technology, such as radiation sensors, microwave imaging, high frequency sound detection, infrared cameras, and night vision goggles to substantiate and record unexplained paranormal activitity at The Del. Some of the noted activity at the hotel includes magnetic fields, drastic temper-ature fluctuations, and electronic dis-charges.

Perhaps someday these complex and high-tech tests may prove the unexplainable accounts, but there are still other claims which have been made that might never be explained. Such is the case of the peculiar incident reported by one of President Gerald Ford's Secret Service-men during their stay at the hotel. The agent apparently called the hotel management to report the noisy guests who were staying in the room above him.This turns out to be a particularily odd complaint because....He was staying in Kate Morgan's room---And it's located on the top floor.