MARCH 2014


#60 Meeting Bob

01 March 2014 // Point Loma, California

A big thank you to Mr. Bob Goff for the powerful talk, and a powerful hug to go along with it. Definitely one of the most interesting and inspiring people I’ve had the opportunity to meet. Rather than talking about living a worthwhile life, Bob just shows people what that looks like.

#61 Back to Bakersfield

02 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

I got back to Bakersfield on Sunday evening after my third consecutive weekend out of town. While I like my weekend adventures in other parts, I’m thinking it’ll be a nice change of pace to be able to get back to some of my old usual routines now that they’re all done. Some quality naps are in order!

#62 Modules

03 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

With a binder full of worksheets from the Storyline Conference, Dee and I went over some of the modules together as a bonding exercise and as a way to connect more with each others’ stories. It was really neat, and I was largely happy with seeing how the trajectory of life has gone so far!

#63 CalWest in Bakersfield

04 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

I finally got to fulfill my LiNK alumni duties and host an event and a team of nomads! Unfortunately all I could muster was a small house show, but it was great getting to meet the new CalWest team and show them a little bit around Bakersfield. Once I’m finally more connected within a city, I’m looking forward to the screenings to come.

#64 Korean Figurines

05 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

I got a package at the post office. I went to pick it up to find that it came from Korea. Curious. I also noticed it had “figurines” as one of the only English words I could read written on the outside. Hmm… I thought, maybe “figurines” was just the best thing to write on there to make sure the package was well handled. Well… turns out, they were really figurines! My man Jihyun was awesome and thoughtful and sent over some figurines that reminded him of me and Dee… a Korean nurse from back in the day, and a child who wet the bed and must now ask for salt as a punishment. Thank you, Jihyun!

#65 Club Odyssey

06 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

Behind these doors are where Deanna and I go Latin dancing on Thursday nights. Tonight we arrived a little bit early for the lesson, which was helpful because we learned how to dance the cumbia- a fun and simple one for those of us who like to spin each other.

#66 A Walk in the Neighborhood

07 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

Deanna and I got to go on a nice little walk in the afternoon, while the clouds were in “Toy Story” form. We got ready for the big weekend full of visiting family and helping her grandma move into a new apartment. This week was a big one for us as we started to put together some travel plans.

#67 Basque at Benji’s

08 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

I finally got to try some of the famous Basque food that Bakersfield is known for. Ate tonight at Benji’s with Deanna’s family, and the meal was amazing. Lots of lamb, pickled tongue, fries, green beans, and some real good cabbage soup. Plus chilled red boxed wine. I got the Baked Alaskan for dessert, which consisted of taking a thing of pound cake, covering it with ice cream, and then meringue, then lighting some brandy on fire and pouring that over the top.

#68 Streets of Bakersfield

09 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

A simple scene from a simple Sunday around Bakersfield. There’s something about the flatness and vastness of the street designs, coupled with the way industrial power structures simply jut out obtrusively that captures the environment of Bakersfield. The anomaly from this day was the much bluer sky. Mostly I associate Bakersfield with a glaring light blue and excessive sun. But it’s a welcome change.

#69 Airport Donut Coffee Sandwich

10 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

This odd sandwich place sits right in between my house and the freeway, meaning I pass by it every single day, and I almost associate it as the gateway to my house. I’ve always found their sign interesting, almost as if somebody just threw a bunch of words on a board, or if we’re supposed to be playing the “which one does not belong” game. I live pretty close to Oildale, a place where I am definitely an outlier, so I feel a special connection to this sign.

#70 Newsstand/Periodicals

11 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

I got off work fairly early, and since I worked pretty close to a Barnes & Noble, I got to use the extra time to do one of my favorite things hands down… bookstore lurk. This week has mostly been a mad mission to regain a lot of the energy I’ve spent by three weekends in a row gone out of town, to be followed soon by two more.

#71 Power Towers

12 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

The oil towers are my choice for the symbol of Bakersfield. We drove past a few ones as the sky was displaying an incredible sunset on the way to visit Deanna’s nephews. It’s odd to think that my time in Bakersfield is coming to an end in just two and a half months. It’s been an unusual living situation, but it’s definitely been a great experience for me on a number of levels.

#72 La Cabaña

13 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

This huge sign that looms off of Golden State Avenue is the one spot that I must pass on the way to and from work every single day. It’s kind of turned into my welcome home at the end of a day of work, and because of its size and location, and the lack of other distinctives, it’s also a bit of an iconic spot around Bakersfield. If there’s one thing I do enjoy about the Bakersfield aesthetic, it’s the presence of large, old-style signage.

#73 To The Rockies

14 March 2014 // Upland, California

Drove out to Upland in the evening to get ready for my weekend trip to Denver with Deanna. While we won’t get to visit Rocky Mountain National Park on this visit, we’re hoping to at least get a good look at some of the outdoor scene. We’re looking at the potential of Denver to be our next home. I’ve got good expectations for this city.

#74 REI

15 March 2014 // Denver, Colorado

Loved our first day in Denver– overcast skies and a visit to a cozy little café. One of my favorite spots we visited was the flagship store of REI, located right outside Mile High Field. The three-level retail store also boasted a large indoor rock climbing wall so you could test out their stuff, and what was probably the coolest Starbucks I’ve seen on the inside. So far, so good with Denver.

#75 The Mile High City

16 March 2014 // Denver, Colorado

Spent the day exploring mostly downtown Denver, LoDo, and the CBD. I like this city, a lot, particularly how each location kind of feels like its own place but remains fairly accessible to all the other parts around town. Some highlights included a fantastic lunch and bloody marys at a place called The Corner Office and watching all of the dogs at one of the parks in LoDo.

#76 University of Denver

17 March 2014 // Denver, Colorado

Took some time in the morning to explore the campus of what might be my next school– the University of Denver. Ever since discovering the International Human Rights program there I’ve been impressed and I liked the cozy, classic feeling to the smaller campus than what I’m used to. If for some reason I’m not at DU in the fall, it won’t be due to anything lacking in the school itself. That’s for sure.

#77 Roxborough State Park

18 March 2014 // Littleton, Colorado

On our last day in Denver, we wanted to get a taste for the surrounding nature and mountainous landscapes. While we were a bit too short on time to fit in Rocky Mountain National Park, we did get to pay Roxborough State Park a visit, and that was gorgeous. The weather could have been better, and we were only able to do a short hike (we got just a little bit of snowfall) but it was still very pretty, and reminded me somewhat of Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs- one of the prettiest places I’ve been in the U.S.

#78 Butterball

19 March 2014 // Upland, California

Since our flight back from Denver didn’t arrive until quite late, we spent the night at the Dorners’ in Upland, which allowed us to hang out with their animals and take our time getting back to Bakersfield. The big twist of the week came as we were driving home. As much as I enjoyed Denver, I got an email saying that the University of Oregon had doubled my scholarship, basically making it a full ride. Things get interesting just as decision day gets near.

#79 The Photo Wall

20 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

Ever since I finally got a place of my own after a year of purely nomadic living, I looked forward to being able to put up some of my prints on the wall. Surprisingly it’s taken me this long to actually complete the wall and get a good square block of photos going. This is also one of the easier items on my 1001 Day List, making it even more of a surprise that it took me so long.

#80 Bryce and the Wine

21 March 2014 // Santa Barbara, California

After a longer drive than normal, Deanna and I were able to make it into Santa Barbara for another one of our weekend visits. I stayed with Bryce and we got to stay up a bit later talking and catching up. I’m so glad this guy is back in the country for this year, and that our conversations are just like they were when we used to live together.

#81 Bryce and the Pizza

22 March 2014 // Goleta, California

This visit to SB was far more laid back than our usual and that was a good thing. The evening in particular was a lot of fun. Deanna, Bryce and I got together with Natalie, Cori, and Leanna to make a pizza. We also had a good discussion about foster care and adoption, followed by playing a round of Settlers of Catan while watching Tangled. Oh, not to mention the dance party to the Hipster Youth playlist we found on Spotify.

#82 A Butterfly Walk

23 March 2014 // Goleta, California

On a lazy Sunday around Santa Barbara, Deanna and I decided to indulge our movie watching habits by going to see Muppets Most Wanted at the drive-in. Before our movie started, though, we decided to go on a walk around the Goleta Butterfly Preserves. Unfortunately, it wasn’t butterfly season, so the amount of those we saw was zero. However, we were still treated to a very pretty walk.

#83 Whale Watching in Santa Barbara

24 March 2014 // Santa Barbara, California

One of those awesome things we had all the opportunities in the world to do, yet never did, was go whale watching while we were living in Santa Barbara. Making up for lost time, Deanna and I made reservations to go and took along Sean Chiu. It took us a while to get to some whales, and when we did, my pictures weren’t that great. But we had fun, so we win.

#84 Ice Cream Night

25 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

After missing out for a week or two on our small group, I got to catch up a bit with Sammy and D.J. at Dewar’s and indulge in some ice cream. It’s been a pretty hectic month, so it was pretty nice that on my craziest day (Tuesday) I was able to have a day that went at a slower pace than the norm. It was a welcome slowness.

#85 The Painted Whale

26 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

After a day of working, I didn’t want to do much after coming home except for take a nap. It was a much needed nap, too. I also decided to attack some of the health issues I’ve had head-on by finally paying the doctor a visit. The stress of a wild month might’ve started to catch up with me a bit more, but it feels good to be at a point where that looks like it’s turning around.

#86 The Noodle Bar

27 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

Ben and a few other people from our church small group all got dinner at the Noodle Bar downtown, a restaurant I passed by a few times but ignored on account of it “looking expensive.” Thankfully, I was invited so I got a taste and found out that it was both reasonably priced and delicious. Definitely a great restaurant discovery, accompanied by some good company.

#87 Paid in Magic

28 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

Ever since tour, Menekse has been in debt to me and I told her I would only accept payment in the form of homemade Pop-Tarts and Magic The Gathering cards. When I first saw the thick, white envelope in my mailbox, my initial reaction was ‘Oh God, a Pop-Tart.’

#88 Daniel + CC

29 March 2014 // Tulare, California

Deanna and I drove up to Tulare to see two of the people we miss the most- Daniel and Caytlin. It was great talking to everyone and swapping life stories. Even though we don’t get to catch up all that frequently, it’s pretty great that whenever we do, there are both traces of familiarity and the excitement of new stories.

#89 Dee + Luke

30 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

After a very close call on the freeway the night before (resulting in a totaled car), Deanna and I are very thankful to be alive. We spent the day taking care of a lot of insurance busy work and stuff, but we were reminded of what we have to live for as well. Like Luke. What a fun kiddo.

#90 Decision Time

31 March 2014 // Bakersfield, California

Decision day on where to go to grad school is getting closer, and these schools aren’t making it easy. You have my dream city, my dream program, and my dream financial situation all coming from different angles. This should be an interesting week ahead, but as far as difficult decisions go, this is one of the best ones to have.

Philippe Lazaro365