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Uncle Markie out and about.

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Sat
4
May '19

Trip Report: Wedding Ramble, Part Three – Anaheim With No Ears

It sounded like a good idea at the time – a 6:55am departure from San Luis Obispo. In reality, I had to get up at 4:30, check-out, return the rental car with gas in it, and catch an Uber to the train station. A light rain as I waited for the train – the first […]

Thu
2
May '19

Trip Report: Wedding Ramble, Part Two – The Wedding

Back on the train to the reason for this whole ramble, The Wedding. Off I go way too early in the day from the Emeryville Amtrak station (chauffeured by Lunetta). And they are still serving breakfast! Followed by a nap (do you see a pattern here?), followed by a late lunch: With some scenery thrown […]

Tue
30
Apr '19

Trip Report: Wedding Ramble, Part One – Headed To Berkeley

It’s rare that I take a weekend off that I’m not out of the country. By mutual agreement with my business partner, I limit my weekends off during the year to three, maybe four. This is the very rare domestic trip, and since I have to take the weekend off for the wedding (more on […]

Wed
24
Apr '19

Trip Report: Chicago – Presidential Reserve Style

Bless The Colonels for their bounty. It will take years for me to pay them back for the wonderful places they are providing this year. Latest example is a One-Bedroom Presidential Reserve unit in the Wyndham Grand Chicago Riverfront. Got a flight into town during the day – a nice change, AND an upgrade to […]

Sat
13
Apr '19

Trip Report: San Diego For A Little Sun

Another adventure starting out at Paine Field – Seattle’s newest airport. This time Seth gave me a ride to the airport since he lives 10 minutes away. And gave me a place to park my car for a couple of days. Snagged the fare for $131 roundtrip – and since it was double miles, plus […]

Wed
3
Apr '19

Trip Report: Trying Out Seattle’s New Airport

Seattle has a new airport! Not terribly close to me, an hour north of downtown, but had to check it out (and they are offering double miles through the end of April, which with my elite bonus, it’s 325%). It was a quick trip to Portland for a cup of soup in the Lounge, and […]

Sat
30
Mar '19

Trip Report: SLO Wine

While Jameson was off at work, I was off at play, sampling some of the local wineries. Stop number one was Sextant, who has a branch tasting room and deli in the Edna Valley. Having not had breakfast, I needed food before wine: Was getting grounded after a little food, but did chat a little […]

Sat
30
Mar '19

Trip Report: SLO (San Luis Obispo) Fun

Last month I tried to visit SLO, and Amtrak failed me by cancelling two days’ worth of trains. My goal was to see Jameson before he and Carolynn get married next month since I know the wedding will be crazy and I’m betting I barely get to see his brother as well. Alaska does a […]

Fri
29
Mar '19

Home Report: 737max Storage

Two blocks from my house is the Duwamish River (with kayak launch for those that do those sorts of things in the park, and a boat launch for bigger things), and this is now the view across the river: If you go up the bridge – this is the view: From the middle of the […]

Thu
28
Mar '19

Trip Report: Vegas – Friends And Food

The main reason for the trip was the tour of the Nevada National Security Site, but you have to eat and hang out as well! After the tour, we actually went out for a nice dinner – a rarity for us since we all are good cooks, but someone (Jonathan) was in the mood for […]

Sun
24
Mar '19

Trip Report: Vegas – It’s More Than Gambling

There is more to do in Vegas other than gambling – if I’m going to throw my money away, I’d rather drink it away. If you want to gamble, you can even gamble in the grocery store! That said, there are LOTS of things to do without hitting the strip. Like tour a chocolate factory […]

Fri
22
Mar '19

Trip Report: Nevada National Security Site (NNSS)

Better known as the Atomic Testing Grounds north of Las Vegas. The tale of this trip starts last June when I’m on the NNSS site trying to get a tour (http://www.nnss.gov/pages/PublicAffairsOutreach/NNSStours.html) which book up about nine months out as they are thirty people, once a month. Upside is that it is free. We finally got […]

Wed
13
Mar '19

Home Report: Dark Matter For Lunch

Before I get to the Dark Matter, let’s cover lunch which is connected to Dark Matter, though I had the fish: That’s my crazy buddy, Seth, and, yes, we are having cocktails our lunch at Mamma Melina near U Village: I like to call this the “Tuesday Trifecta”. I get to see Seth, I get […]

Mon
11
Mar '19

Trip Report: Bay Area For Friends And Wine

Grabbed a ride with Rache to the airport – it was an hour earlier, than even I, the early arriver, arrives. Maybe I should have waited…since this was what I looked like in the lounge: No upgrade to First this time, I was number 8 on the list for only 12 seats since it was […]

Sat
2
Mar '19

Trip Report: San Luis Obispo Turned Into Vancouver, BC

The plan was to visit Jameson (and fiancée) in San Luis Obispo this week on the Amtrak Coast Starlight. This is what the overnight journey should have looked like: But I got this note at 6:50am Monday morning for my 9:45am departure: We wanted to let you know that train #11, the Coast Starlight, from […]

Sun
24
Feb '19

Trip Report: Austin For Sun!

After 10 days of mileage runs to Raleigh, including an inadvertent stop in Vegas – it’s time so stay someplace for a couple of nights…and get warmed up. Because of the weather, my original non-stop flight is now a two hop, through San Jose. Fortunately, I got upgraded on both legs, and the first one […]

Thu
14
Feb '19

Trip Report: Accidental Trip To Las Vegas

For those of you who read yesterdays’ post, sorry for the repeat of graphics, but for the rest of you, this was my Monday/Tuesday flight pattern: Vegas here I come because they diverted my flight back from Raleigh. Twenty minutes and $25 dollars in cab fare from the strip – basically in the middle of […]

Wed
13
Feb '19

Trip Report: Winter Mileage Runs

Mileage Run definition courtesy of Wikipedia: “A ‘mileage run’ is an airline trip designed and taken solely to gain maximum frequent-flyer miles, points, or elite status. If a traveler has already achieved some sort of elite status, then that traveler will earn bonus award miles or points on top of his or her actual flight […]

Sat
9
Feb '19

Trip Report: Return From Chile

The length of my overseas trips are determined by two factors: The ability to only take one weekend in a row off from the wine shop The longest amount of days that I can business class flights on all segments The upshot is that I’d have liked to leave on the red-eye a day before […]

Sun
3
Feb '19

Trip Report: Return To Santiago, Chile

Back to Santiago we go…via a different bus company: Seats were slightly more comfortable, and the same price, 5,000 Pesos…but had to use the bathroom, which had no water, but at least it had a hole to pee in. Back to the Ibis Esation Centrale, though to a different floor – where we were soon […]