Before I continue to grind for the upcoming year, I usually stroll down #MemoryLane of the previous year to have a better grasp of my triumphants and tribulations.
I celebrated my first anniversary with #Instacart. Although based on my gut-feeling about my tax filing and my adjusted refund … my days with them were numbered. At the April, my ‘working on borrowed time’ was up. I’ve been retired from Instacart shopping.
Not gonna lie, I look forward to my birthday month. More for the fact it’s the last little of winter in the Pacific Northwest than my birthday celebration. For the past few years, I’ve become known for my birthday celebrations being larger than life. I didn’t want to disappoint. Since it was my 43rd birthday, I wanted to pay homage to #NASCAR. Before 2016, the maximum number of car entries that fielded a NASCAR Sprint Cup Race was 43.
And yes, Richard “The King” Petty, also drove the number 43 for a number of years.
My sister and I were inspired by a video parody of a staged Mario Kart Race down San Francisco’s Lombard Street. My research found this!
Mushroom Rally will be hosting 16 heats in 16 cities across the United States starting in Los Angeles in March 2019 with a final taking place in sin city, Las Vegas later in the year featuring all the finalist from each city. … Collecting the most stars in your city (Top 3 in the country will go to Vegas!)
The closest host city was Richmond in Canada’s British Columbia, and it was in February. That’s serendipity if I’ve ever heard of it. I tried to rally other folks, but no avail (see what I did there?) Essentially it was a Mario Kart themed electric go-kart racing.
Every year for the past 10 years a group of us gather up to watch the first two days of the NCAA College Men’s Basketball Tournament known simply as March Madness. It’s incredible to think that we’ve been doing this for a decade!
March 2019 was no different. Scott and Sidney graciously hosted a gang of us that piled into their house. Our pseudo-weekend of a basketball bender has assigned meals, it’s fair share of dollar bets, laughter, basketball watching, and drinking!
So far this #YearInReview has been fun!
For my birthday party celebration I was also gonna rock my friend, Evan’s Prohibition Party! Evan has an experiential entertainment company called Alchemy Entertainment. It was originally scheduled for February 8th 2019. However that was in the middle of Seattle’s #Snowmageddon so based on a projected low-attendance, and a high-risk to safety due to the inclement weather the decision was to reschedule …. for April. So since our tickets were still valid, Charrina and I dressed up as gangsters and rocked it.
It was a blast. Mari, and Chad operated a photobooth there as well to represent their company, A Amore Events and Entertainment. Then we discovered our friend, Jessica, was one of the bartenders! Overall, a great night of themed fun.
My co-worker, Jason Kilmer, created a scavenger hunt game on the application called Goose Chase. WCP and I were paired together on one team, so the competing team really didn’t have a chance. Sounds arrogant, but we did end up winning. I was so inspired by the experience, I filmed it, posted a video and then decided then and there I was doing the same for my birthday in 2020!
My annual trip to Winthrop, WA was dwarfed by the events that happened a couple weeks later …
My friend, Arturo, and I had some open dialogue about meeting up for a couple of years. We decided that 2019 would be it. I would fly to Costa Rica to be reunited with my amigo. Little did we know in the planning stage what would actually happen!
The plan seemed simple enough: for every 2 days I would continue with my book, The Murder of Crowe: A Steampunk Whodunnit, I would take 1 day of rest.
I casually mentioned the game of Geocaching to Arturo MONTHS before I arrived. On the day I was supposed to be “resting” we ended up playing the game every opportunity we got after I demonstrated it to Arturo, Montse (his daughter), and Jorge (his friend)
We had a blast exploring the Costa Rican, and even Nicaraguan landscape! After a couple of weeks, I had to return to my life in the States. The day after I returned home, tragically Arturo succumbed to his blood disease and died. I was stunned. I grieved my friend is gone. I still am. In order to memorialize our shared experience with Geocaching, I published one in his memory.
My sister and I intensify our Geocaching focus this summer by hiking to renown Ghost Towns in Washington State. Or hikes with scenic views, or places / towns / cities with marquee geocaches that’ll help me with the Washington State Jasmer Challenge.
The Jasmer Challenge – This is a challenge cache with specific logging requirements, so please read carefully. If you claim a find here without meeting the challenge requirements we will have to delete your log.
In order to claim a find here, you’ll need to find at least one cache hidden during each month since geocaching started in May 2000. As anyone who has completed this challenge knows, that’s a pretty tall order! It is not possible to to complete this challenge with only caches in Washington, so you’ll need to do some out-of-state traveling to cross the finish line.– Geocaching dot com
Charrina and I have yet to complete this challenge.
America’s birthday is early in the month, with a couple of my bro’s in the same situation: Scott and Jason’s birthdays in early July.
Still it didn’t diminish the fact Lisa and Damon requested I be their officiant for their wedding! At first I was terrified, but eventually was flattered by the thought. Speaking of thought, I thought the ceremony was beautiful and perfect. Damon and Lisa agreed. Even months later they still give me props! I’m relieved I didn’t make a mistake.
For a couple of years I dated Deana Makinson, who is a dancer for West Coast Country Heat. By virtue of attending shows to show my support I met and befriended most of the dance team. Dustin, another dancer, proposed to his girlfriend at Winthrop in May, and 3 short months later they had their wedding.
Our Geocaching focus didn’t wane either. A large event was hosted on San Juan Island in the San Juan Island Chain called … (yes, you guessed it) San Juan Geocaching Adventure! Charrina and I had a blast roaming around the island finding caches before and after the event.
There’s a little known train wreck on the Olympic Peninsula. A geocacher crawled down there with an ammo can to hide in the wreckage and called it, Ring of Fire, named after the movie (not the Johnny Cash song) We didn’t find it but vowed to return to find it.
This was the year of weddings! My sister and I were invited to our sister, Leoni, wedding in the Philippines to her fiancé, Gerald. We reached out to our friend, Marc E Marx, in order to offer up the right-to-first-refusal. We did so because the last time we traveled there he expressed a strong desire to return to the Philippines.
The family was so delighted to have us return so quickly (we were there last year for Charrina’s 40th birthday)
One of my bros, Mark Romero, moved off to Buda, Texas. Scott, and Jason already had made plans to visit him, but they extended the invite to me as well. It was a bro-down in the Texas Heartland. We roamed around to the cities of San Antonio and Austin since we were within driving distance.
November 1st is the first day of Costco Vacation Blackout Period – so I wasn’t traveling for an extended amount of time … and it was holiday season for the Photo Center Department I was thrust in at Woodinville Costco.
The only note worthy event was the JC Turkey Bowl hosted by Angie. The football game score was tied, so the winner was decided with a chug-off between yours truly and a WSU Cougar graduate. I didn’t have a prayer but I made it a respectful loss of 1 second delay.
Tabula Rasa Day, my holiday I created several year ago, was Sunday, December 1. That pretty much guaranteed a low attendance so I didn’t wanna drop a ton of dollars but at least wanted to entice people to show up. And they did.
Shortly after TRD, I was on a plane to Las Vegas to meet up my friend, Sherrie, to watch the Aerosmith on their last day of residency for 2019. This was the shortest trip to Vegas with only being on the ground for 36 hours.
It was fantastic to interact with my friend after so many years. Speaking of so-many-years, Aerosmith STILL puts on an awesome show. It was my 2nd concert for them but over 20 years between them.
It’s taken me a few days to write this blog post … I wonder what 2020 will be like for me? The only way to find out is to get out there and live it!
More from me later,