Archive for November, 2007

Fancy camping for the holiday

Our tent cabin

On the spur of the moment, K. and I took a trip during our Thanksgiving break to Costanoa, what we’re calling a “fancy camping” resort, about half an hour south of Half Moon Bay on Highway 1. We drove in Saturday afternoon, stayed Saturday and Sunday nights, and then got up seriously early on Monday to get back to work. This was a really spontaneous trip, much more spontaneity than I can usually manage; it was all K.’s idea. Thanks to C. for making it possible by watching the hounds at the last minute.

We stayed in a “Cypress Village” tent cabin, which was very cute. It wasn’t heated, which meant that it was about the same temperature inside the cabin as it was outside, and it wasn’t a particularly warm weekend, with lows hovering around 40 degrees. However, in our queen-sized bed with the heated mattress pad, things were warm and toasty. And we didn’t need a refrigerator to chill our white wine to the proper drinking temperature. (A tip: Turn on your heated mattress pad early and tuck your PJs under the covers for awhile, so they’ll be nice and warm when you’re ready to change into them.)

There’s no indoor plumbing in any of their cabins, but they do have nice comfort stations, which have heated showers, saunas and a fireplace in the middle. It seems a little strange to bring a bottle of wine to fireplace nestled between two bathrooms, but it’s actually quite pleasant. There was a hot tub that we took advantage of, and another nice fireplace outside the lodge with a great view.

We also had a great dinner on Sunday night at the Cascade restaurant at the resort, although the breakfast buffet there wasn’t stellar. On Saturday night we drove 10 miles into Pescadero and ate dinner at the local favorite Duarte’s (pronounced DOO-arts, apparently). Our Sunday lunch was also in Pescadero, at a gas station/taqueria, actually, and very tasty.

We took a couple of nice hikes right around Costanoa itself; there’s apparently some other good hiking areas close. There’s a lighthouse nearby with a hostel for lower-budget experiences; we may try to check that out soon as well. It’s also very close to elephant seal habitat, which we’ll visit on a later trip. We saw deer and even a bobcat (that’s a bobcat, right?) while we were exploring the resort. It felt very out of the way and remote.

It was a totally great way to wind up the holiday. Here’s our big set of pictures from this trip.



Originally uploaded by evh711.

So, with my new phone camera, I can blog without a computer. I’m making this entry while I’m out with the dogs in the park. I feel very Web 2.0.

Art appreciation

Last week in Houston, we took J. out to eat, and passed by the Houston Museum of Fine Arts. J. ran up and struck this pose spontaneously, with no prompting from me. The next second, a guard ran up and told us not to touch the statues. I don’t know, if they’re outside, they sort of invite a little participation, don’t you think? I bet the artist would have loved this.

This picture was taken with my new cell phone camera. I have a new cell phone because my old one was stolen from a chair beside me while I was sleeping in an ICU waiting room. Can you believe that? What kind of person must you have to be, really …

Matthew Wood

Matthew as Master of Ceremonies at our wedding

I lost a person who was very dear to me last week, and who I miss terribly. I had the honor of writing his obituary, which appeared in several Texas papers. While a truly complete tribute to him would always include the infamous and terrible “clown joke,” I’m not ready to write all that down just now, so I’ll post the obituary below.

May 16, 1969 – Nov. 1, 2007

Matthew Scott Wood died on Thursday, November 1, after a struggle with lymphoma. Matthew was born in Tyler, Texas, grew up in College Station, graduated from A&M Consolidated High in 1987, and went on to attend Texas A&M University, where he was president of the Memorial Student Center and a winner of the Buck Weirus Spirit Award. After finishing his BA in Political Science there in 1992, he continued his education at the University of New Mexico where he earned double Masters degrees in international business administration and Latin American studies. He then embarked on a career that combined his love of economics and foreign language and lead him to become a leading journalist in the oil and gas industry and a mentor to many of his colleagues, especially his coworkers at Argus Media Group.

Matthew loved traveling, learning languages, arts and music, and talking politics. He was an accomplished horseman, cook and storyteller; a dedicated member of his church; and a loving and devoted partner, father, son, brother and friend. He is survived by his partner, Charles Kiel Reeves, and their daughter Jordan, of Houston; his parents, Sam and Janice Wood, sister Amy McNamara and nephews Tanner Seth and Tyndall Myers of College Station; his grandparents, Norine Scott Farber of Murchison and Helen Tyndall Wood of Sugarland; as well as numerous other family members and close friends. He was preceded in death by his grandfathers, Art Farber and Sam Wood, Sr. His loss will be felt by many, many people.

Services will be held in Houston at Palmer Memorial Episcopal Church, 6221 Main Street, Houston, Texas 77030, where Matthew was a vestryman, on Tuesday, November 6th at eleven in the morning. Visitation with family and friends will follow the service. In lieu of flowers, Matthew has asked that donations be sent to Palmer Ministries at the address above, or to Casa de Esperanza de Los NiƱos at P.O. Box 66581, Houston, Texas, 77266.