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01 August 2013 @ 12:28 am
Mid-vacation check-in...  
We're still up in Oregon, visiting family. Today was a fairly frustrating day of GPS failure, but having dinner with family this evening made it better. Until now—midnight in the hotel in Lake Oswego. My husband is randomly loudly snoring and flailing, our daughter is snorgling (I hope the earplugs can block that out), and about an hour ago I discovered an unforseen drawback to this location (right on the lake): the main street (Highway 43) through Lake Oswego is also where the train comes through! And goes around the corner, so the horn blasts on and off for a long time. We've never run into this before. o_O

Hardest part of the vacation so far: finishing this week's Idol entry, which was an intersection (worst possible week ever) happening while I'm changing cities every few days, visiting family, and out and about every day except for morning and late at night. The news hit late on Friday, with our trip to Portland happening the next day. Once I leave my parents' house, I have zero alone time. Everyone is crammed into the same hotel room (with the TV and my son, the chatterbox), and it would be hard enough to write under those circumstances. But the intercommunication with the partner is much harder when both of you are busy. I finally had my chance to team up with the fantastic lrig_rorrim, and it had to be this weekend! Plus, she's also traveling and visiting with another Idol friend, so everyone's vacation is being overshadowed by this. I was up until 1:30 on Monday night, with my husband getting up at 6:30 the next day. Gah. Well, my story for the week is here, with a link to my partner's. Your support is always appreciated!

Portland, Part 1: Saturday Market, Powell's Books (and a list of things to check out from the library, including Sandman Slim and School's Out Forever), John's Incredible Pizza Place (too much buffet. God, where is the willpower?), and our daughter mainlining multiple seasons of Grey's Anatomy via Netflix. I ran at Tryon Creek for the first time in two years, and paid for it with sore quads for three days. But totally worth it. Much visiting with my older sister and a wonderful niece (the other sister and the rest of her family were out of town).

Seattle: A different niece was our tour guide. Went to the Public Market, the Sculpture Park, the Museum of Flight (3 hours, and we barely made it out of the Space part, which was geektastic), rode the ferry, ate salmon and special local ice cream. Today, we went to Archie McPhee's, where I bought Narwahl Horn Mints, lemon Fizzies (no orange or root beer, boo), and Pop Rocks... but not the inflatable Cthulhu beard or any bacon-flavored products, tempting though they were. Getting to McPhee's was a GPS disaster that cost us half an hour (we missed the left turn that was about a 145o backturn, and it didn't recalibrate. It just kept leading us astray). Going from McPhee's to downtown was a new disaster—out Aurora, which became Highway 99, but you couldn't get off where the GPS recommended. We wound up going over the bridge to West Seattle, where the GPS finally resorted to "Make a U-turn" (on the expressway!). Burned another half-hour of misdirected driving there. Result: went to the Space Needle, but discovered we were out of time to wait for and take the tour. Plus... about $90 for a family of 4 to do that. Holy crap. Left Seattle for Portland, but the drive still took over 4 hours thanks to slow traffic.

Back to Eugene late tomorrow, where the duller part of the vacation begins. But it means a lot to my parents, so that's what really counts. They're both 86.

GPS foul-ups aside, I do like the entertainment factor of how it mispronounces things. Beavercreek became 'Bevvercreek,' Terwilliger was 'Terwiyilazher' (like, half-French with a yodel in the middle), and Aurora had a double yodel. Lake+anything is always iffy if it's one long word, because half the time the GPS winds up saying "lacka" for the 'lake' part. Technology! Not always as technical as you might think. o_O

Cass E. Pantscass404 on August 1st, 2013 09:02 am (UTC)
Terwilliger via GPS is always amusing.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 1st, 2013 04:03 pm (UTC)
So, you've heard it too?

I can understand rhyming the last part with "tiger", but "lazher"?? Where's the A?

The other thing is how it covers 'confusing' words by inserting a yodel in the middle. Like you won't notice that it's failing? Except that half the time, you can't figure out what it's saying! "Ah-ooo-ah-ruh" for Aurora takes some descrambling! Or "Yah-leh" for Yale. :O
Cass E. Pantscass404 on August 2nd, 2013 03:35 am (UTC)
When I lived there, yep. Now I hear GPS butcher Spanish names.

Sometimes I can see how it gets there from the letters but Terwilliger is just boggling. Though I can't recall how I thought it was pronounced when I first lived there. I know it was really wrong though.
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 2nd, 2013 05:44 am (UTC)
We drove on Bonita (GPS-pronounced BON-ih-tuh) just yesterday, which was interesting.

I can imagine how dreadful GPS-mangled Spanish is. Every vowel wrong! Plus the J/H/G letters-- on, the horror. :O
Cass E. Pantscass404 on August 2nd, 2013 06:54 am (UTC)
If you took the 5 down (or up), I wonder if yours destroyed Kruse Way as the exit as bad as mine used to mangle it. (You're in/were in my old 'hood.)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 2nd, 2013 10:45 pm (UTC)
We didn't go past Kruse Way, that I'm aware of. Is that supposed to rhyme with "cruise"? I could see the GPS coming up with 'Krussuh" or "Kroo-see" or something similarly dreadful. :O
adoptedwriteradoptedwriter on August 1st, 2013 11:06 pm (UTC)
My sisters live in Portland. I live it there. AW
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 2nd, 2013 05:47 am (UTC)
I do, too. I'm originally from Oregon and wound up in Sacramento, but I hope to return some day. I love Portland, specifically, and two of my sisters are there. I really envy them when I visit!
adoptedwriteradoptedwriter on August 2nd, 2013 12:49 pm (UTC)
I just added ya on my flist! AW
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 2nd, 2013 07:00 pm (UTC)
Added you back! :D
cindy: spn - dean facepalm (by mixedbatch)tsuki_no_bara on August 3rd, 2013 03:38 am (UTC)
the last time i went to dallas to visit wrenlet before she moved, we went to fort worth which took us on fm somenumberorother - i think fm stands for "farm to market" or something - i've never seen that kind of road designation anywhere else - and the gps referred to it as "federated states of micronesia somenumberorother". EVERY TIME. we just kept cracking up.

the seattle and portland parts of your trip sound really fun! altho $90 for four people to see the space noodle needle sounds like a lot, altho it IS the space needle. what are narwahl horn mints? what makes them different from other mints?
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphorshalfshellvenus on August 3rd, 2013 04:51 am (UTC)
Haha! 'Federated States of Micronesia' -- never add 'information' when you're not sure!

I can't believe the prices for the Space Needle. There are plenty of landmarks that you can see at a reasonable price, and that one was built for a World's Fair about 50 years ago and is bought and paid for! Why the highway robbery on the tourist prices? Ugh.

Like most of the weird mints at Archie McPhee's, the tins are the big attraction. I came thisClose to buying Death Mints. But the Narwhal Horn Mints are shaped like horns, and the tin is cute, and concept is bizarre: see? :D