Friday, April 29, 2011

O Dixie We Love Thee

So I know I have a lot to catch up on, and don't worry, there are great posts in the works. But this post demands immediate attention.

You all know how much I love my alma mater, Dixie High School. I have school spirit steaming out my ears (still, after 5 years).  Many of you also know about a lovely little tradition called the Bucket Run.

It's done once a year, on the Friday of "D Week," also known as, "D Day." Other D Day events include class olympics, a senior showoff talent show, and the ceremonial annual painting of the "DIXIE" on the Sugar Loaf (a red mountain just up from the Boulevard in St. George). Only the "Diamond D's" get to paint the Dixie. And you can guess that I was one of those lucky few.
me being lowered over the cliff.. to paint

So the Bucket Run is a relay race. Kind of. There's only one team. The current senior class competes with all senior classes before them. In 2006, when I was a senior, the record had just been beaten by the class of 2005 the year before. The race starts at the high school and goes up Main Street to the aforementioned Sugar Loaf. At the bottom of the mountain, there is some sort of device built by the current senior class to get the bucket to the top. In theory, the bucket holds the paint that will be used to paint the "Dixie." Within the last 40 or so years, though, they started using the same bucket every year, and just left the paint out. It was heavy and slowed people down. So they still use the same bucket and it's a duct taped and trashed. But so historic, right?
The following video is the 2006 Bucket Run. Yes, those are my classmates. Aren't they cool? ha.

Anyway, that's a little bit of the background.

This year is Dixie High School's centennial year. That makes this year's Bucket Run the 100th. For the Centennial Bucket Run, they did things a little bit different. First of all, they've had to update the route a little bit. A new road to the top of the hill was built, and we were able to maintain the old one for the past couple of years to maintain the integrity of the Bucket Run, but with the 100 year mark, the administration decided that it was a good time to give it up (which is sad, but you move on). But, with the new route, there has to be a new record. That means that the class of 2005 record stands-- and the 2011 Bucket Run sets the new record.

The second change is that the class of 2011 still did their thing, but running alongside them was a Bucket Run team of alumni. Yep, you guessed it. I. ran. the. Bucket. Run. Today. TODAY. I didn't run it when I was a senior because I'm, well, not a runner. I don't really run. They basically had try-outs and practices and it was all intense and despite my school spirit, I couldn't bring myself to participate and ruin it for everyone because of my incompetence. All the track/cross country/soccer/football people ran. You know, you have to be serious about these sorts of things if you want to claim the title (which we didn't anyway).

So I made my brother come with me. I picked him up this morning a little before 6, we met up with all the alumni (there were only about 33 of us), and then got in trucks to be dropped of at our spots along the relay. And I was SO nervous!!! What if I dropped the bucket??!?! WHAT IF?

Luckily, I didn't. I ran really hard (but probably not very fast), and was a little queasy after.

And you know what? We totally trashed the class of 2011. By like 18 seconds (I promise that's a long time). Poor high school kids. Beaten by mighty Dixie alumni. I was on the alumni team, and we STILL won. But do you know what that means? I was a member of the Bucket Run team that currently holds the record. I am a Bucket Run record holder. And honestly, not a lot of people can say that!!!
Me and brother-- on the top of the Sugar Loaf. Isn't my city beautiful? You can even see the "D" in the background.

After the race was over, we all met up on the Sugar Loaf-- and both teams got in a circle and sang our beloved high school hymn together ("O Dixie We Love Thee"). Precious moment.

I rock. The Bucket Run rocks. Dixie High School rocks. Yay 100 years of the happiness that is DHS.

And because I know you want more information on Dixie's centennial, you can go to the blog: There is an awesome "This Day in Dixie history" calendar that shows events at Dixie High School from the past 100 years. I just want to shower presents upon whoever took the time to create this blog, because it is a masterpiece. 

Friday, April 8, 2011

1 week

I'm coming home a week from tomorrow. I'm not even going to try and explain how crazy that is.

But I have some randoms for today.

1. Casey Abrams, I knew that American Idol was going to deliver for me this year, but I didn't think it would be in the beardy, 19-year-old, and awkward form of you. (See "Your Song" from last week or "Have You Ever Seen The Rain" from this week.

2. I had a nightmare last night that caused me to-literally- yell out in anger and frustration. It woke up my roommate. She asked me if I was okay--- and then asked for an explanation of the dream. So I had a dream that my sister, Elise, was giving me a haircut, and she did a great job. But then my mom (whose hair salon we were in [sidenote: my mother is not a hair dresser and does not own a salon]), said she needed to fix the layers up a bit. So she did, and then I went into the back of the salon to look in the mirror and get a drink of water. I drank out of the sink and then looked up and gasped. My hair had been chopped to my chin. I immediately started hyperventilating and I couldn't speak right. My words came out in small shrieks and whispers-- no actual voice was coming through (because I was asleep, obviously), and I was SO frustrated because my Mom and Elise had not been alerted to my panic-- I wasn't loud enough. And so I finally YELLED, pointing to my head, "WHAT IS THIS???!!". And that's when I yelled out loud and woke myself, and my roommate, up.

(I've been a sleep talker for as long as I remember. All of my roommates, friends, cousins, and siblings have stories. This event, though, has caused me to think a bit deeper about my sleep talking habits. I did a little bit of research. Apparently sleep talking can either be caused by serious disorders (I think we can rule that out), or by stress, depression, fever, sleep deprivation, day-time drowsiness, and alcohol. Stress? check. Sleep deprivation? check. Day-time drowsiness? check.  But all of those things haven't existed consistently my whole life. There must be something wrong with my brain. Maybe I'm like the guy on Phenomenon. Or maybe I'm just one of those people who sleep talks because she can't ever say as much as she wants to during the day).

3. A federal government shutdown is imminent, which means that the Cherry Blossom festivities I have been looking forward to this weekend will most likely be canceled. Poo on disagreement in Congress. The Constitution is hanging by a thread ya'll. Jk. haha But seriously.

4. I love talking to people who know me well. It is so draining to have to explain all the weird things I do to everyone around.

Example 1: In the mall yesterday, I was talking to Moe on the phone. I told her about some stuff I was looking at. She asked if I was going to buy anything. I said, I want to, but probably not, because, "you know how I do." She said yes, and we moved on. She knows that I have to try things on and think about them a lot before buying anything. But I didn't have to say any of that. And I didn't have to hear any comments about how weird that is.

Example 2: 2 days ago, while chatting to Meghan on the phone, my roommates suddenly alerted me to the fact that American Idol had started and the first contestant was singing a Michael Jackson song. I was off the phone very easily in approximately 3 seconds. A quick "Michael's on American Idol" and an "okay bye" was all the exchange necessary. She understands that these are two of the most important things, and all stops for them.

I'm just so excited to live with people again who will be expecting to go and do something fun on Friday night with me. Things just work better that way.

Until next time,


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

April Showers bring May flowers (Cherry Blossoms in particular).

The District of Columbia is farther from my beloved St. George than I thought. In Washington, there are 39.9 inches of precipitation annually. In St. George there are 8.7 inches. I much prefer the latter. Rainy days=cloudy, sunless, and unhappy days--- and they mean that your shoes and socks and pant bottoms get really wet, and then they stay really wet and cold all day. It's very rude, actually.

But the showers bring the flowers, and I'm already seeing the affects.

So I had some adventures this weekend. It was the first time in 3 weeks that I actually was able to get out and do something on the weekend. The three weekends prior I spent all my time grading, planning lessons, and working on the dreaded teacher work sample. But because my student teaching career is quickly coming to an end (yes.), I have a little more time on my hands, and the weather (despite the loads of rain) is getting better (yes! again).

So I'm starting to enjoy myself a little more. The sad part about the new freedoms is that I am suddenly just about out of money. It's too bad I spent it all during the cold, rainy months, when the other thing to buy was consolation food. Consolation food is very, very bad on so many levels. For one, it makes you fatter. For another, it's still makes you fatter. Third, it's actually kind of expensive (Tom and Jerry's. How can they justify selling those tiny cartons for like $5 a piece? It's inhumane. But people like me buy them). Fourth, now I don't have money for the fun stuff, which is stupid. But whatevs. I have less than two weeks (WAHOOOOO) left, and then I'll hopefully be home and have a job. I can't WAIT to make money again.

So anyway, this weekend. It was a blast. Most of the time.

On Saturday morning I slept in (I hate getting up at 6:30 in the morning. I swear, it will be the death of me), and then me, Julie, and Angie went to a National's game!! The season opener was last week. I love baseball games. I should say that again with more enthusiasm, I LOVE BASEBALL GAMES!!! They mean summer and happiness and sunshine and more happiness. And cute boys in baseball uniforms.

So we bought our tickets and found our seats, and it was sunny and lovely and fun and THEN.

In an instant, the weather shifted to a TORNADO. Well, it might have been a hurricane.

One second there was laughter and cheesy music to be heard, and the next: people were screaming. The clouds had shifted instantaneously and let out a down pour of HAIL. Pelting hail and high MPH winds. We cowered in our seats (screaming ourselves), and once we emerged, the field was covered in a giant tarp, and the entire stadium was evacuated. No. Joke. The marquee had a delay message. We went behind the stadium to get out of the awfulness, and then after waiting in the cold and wet for about 20 minutes decided to bail. It was no longer worth it to wait for the game. This is what I'm talking about when I complain about the rain and awful weather in Washington. THIS is what I'm talking about.
The baseball field before the chaos
The baseball field AFTER. Big difference? I think so.
Julie and Angie DURING the chaos.
Who else's mascot is a giant Abe Lincoln head?
So we went to Eastern Market instead, which is one of my very favorite places. Most of the booths and shops were closed because of the weather, but we managed to buy some delicious mini donuts from a guy. And we found lunch at Good Stuff Eatery. Never has a hamburger and fries tasted so good.

That night we made our way to the waterfront between the Potomac and Anacostia Rivers. The Cherry Blossom Festival people sponsored a street party thing and fireworks. This evening event combined like 8 of my favorite things. 1) fireworks. 2) boats on the river. 3) glow sticks and festival people. 4) twinkly lights on the boats that were on the river. 5) adventures climbing over fences. 6) attempting to take pictures of said fireworks (I have still never been successful at that. And why do I even try?). 7) ice cream at Thomas Sweet in Georgetown following the firework adventure. 8) well, I still really loved the boats on the river.
These are the perfect seats me and Angie found to watch the fireworks from.

Summary of the evening on the river with the fireworks: it was a dream.

Note to future husband: I would like to be proposed to on a boat. In the middle of a river (or the ocean). During some fireworks. That would be nice.

The next morning I woke up to beautiful sunshine; the likes of which have rarely been seen since last fall. I took advantage of the loveliness and went on a long walk by myself before conference (don't worry, I still slept in until like 9:30. Conference wasn't until noon out here). I rode the metro to Arlington Nat'l Cemetery and then walked across the bridge to the Lincoln Memorial, all the way around the Tidal Basin, and then to L'Enfant Plaza to catch the train back home. I saw the Cherry Blossoms up close for the first time, and note to reader, they do not disappoint. They were gorgeous. There were A LOT of tourists, but I dealt with them-- I walked quickly and jumped out of many a picture. In total the walk was about 3.5 miles, and I loved every second of it. I talked to my mom and Moriah on the phone but mostly I just enjoyed the blossoms. And I am seriously in love with the Jefferson Memorial. I mean, I have been for years, but anyway.
Beautiful Arlington

I stuck my camera through the fence. This is the construction site for the new Martin Luther King, Jr. memorial, to be completed December 2011. (YIP!)

Snow on some random trees? No! They're cherry blossoms!

Hey TJ. I can see you poking out in there.

I loved the combination of Cherry Blossom and Willow. (fyi, see the tourists? They were swarming)

Addendum to the note to future husband above: How about a proposal in the Jefferson Memorial, during some fireworks, after rowing a romantic little boat across the Tidal Basin? And don't forget the twinkling lights.

So I had a good weekend. And this weekend is going to be awesome too. And then the next weekend (drumroll please), I'll be flying home, and saying goodbye to this amazing city for a third time.

It's going to be great.
And look out BB12. I've officially purchased Dani's contract. Save a kitchen cupboard for me, I'm coming home!