Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Scotland and England Trip

Only about two months and we’ll be on our way to Scotland and England for vacation.  Ben has been researching like mad and just booked the last place we are staying (7 different hotels on this trip – will be quite a change from last year when we stayed in London the whole time).  We’ll start in Glasgow for a couple of days and end in London with our good friends who we are meeting up with in Manchester.  Along the way we plan to hit parts of the Scottish highlands, Edinburgh, and the Lake District in England.  We’ll only be in Manchester for one day but I am beyond thrilled that we have booked a Smiths tour around Manchester through Manchester Music Tours.  We’ll get to see all sorts of sights from our favorite Smiths songs as well as other important Morrissey landmarks including Salford Lads Club.  Perfect timing that we will be seeing Morrissey in San Francisco the week we return from our trip.  This is going to be the slowest two months ever!

Rock Wall Winery

We have been doing things in Alameda lately that we have been meaning to do forever.  Recently we tried out Rock Wall Winery located on the old navy base.  We loved it!  Did a tasting a had some more wine afterwards out on the back deck looking out on the bay towards the city.  Loved it so much we went the following Friday and introduced the place to a couple of good friends who ended up really enjoying it as well.  Next we have to try and finally make it to Hangar 1, another item from our Alameda to do list.

Here we go again…

Hooray!  The season has begun.  August 18th we went to watch Arsenal’s first match of the season at Maggie McGarry’s in the city where the Bay Area Gooners meet each match day.  What an amazing turn out at 7:00 am.  The place was packed!  We had unfortunately not been there in quite some time so it was great to be back again watching a match surrounded by fellow supporters (one of my favorite things to do and one of the many things I truly miss about living in London – I also miss not having to get up at the crack of dawn to watch matches).  Arsenal unfortunately did not score and instead tied 0 – 0 with Sunderland. 

After the match everyone gathered out front for a photo.  It was so crowded I did not even bother to try to squeeze in and opted to take a photo of the chaos myself.

This photo of us below is in one of the collage frames of the Bay Area Gooners hanging in the hallway at the pub.  This was probably from one of the first matches we ever went to watch there.  I think it’s from 2007.  Also in the photo is Mark (the whole reason there is a pub for supporters to watch matches at) and his lovely wife.  Such nice people and he does a fantastic job running things, all for the love of Arsenal.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Drakes & Forbidden Island Bike Hop

Couple of fun events this weekend.  Started out Saturday by heading over to Drakes in San Leandro for  the release of a couple of their beers, Aroma Coma and Aroma Prieta.  Both were delicious and so was the food we ate from the Doc’s of the Bay food truck on site.  We love the tasting room there (only bad part is you have to drive by walmart to get there since it is behind the shopping center).  Sunday we went to Forbidden Island for their first vintage bike show.  I’m so burned out on car shows so this was a great change of pace.  A ton of bikes showed up.  I fortunately have my mom’s old 50s Schwinn Deluxe Racer back so it was fun to show that off.  Quite a few people were checking it out since I apparently have an internal gear system that is interesting.  Didn’t get to stay for the band later which is too bad since I really like the B-Stars but the music the DJs played throughout the day while we were there was great.  I got the latest FI souvenir mug, the Float mug ($40 which includes a tasty cocktail).  I figured I’d treat myself to an early birthday present and it looks so good next to the rest of our tiki mugs on the shelf it was worth it!  

Cask of Aroma Coma!

Ready for our bike ride to the tiki bar

My Schwinn Deluxe Racer

Captain Boomer!

The boy version of my bike

With Ben and my new floater mug!

Viva 2013 Lineup Announced!

The lineup for Viva 2013 has been announced.  I know there will be so many more on the list I want to see once I’ve done a little research.  Still eight months away but I know that will go by fast.  Already bought our show tickets and have had our room booked since Viva last April so the flight will be the last thing to take care of.  This year we are renting a car just for the first day and it is the same price as a one way cab ride from the airport.  That way we can check out Frankie’s Tiki Room again and not pay close to $50 round trip for a cab.  We can also finally go to Ace’s and Ales.  Ben has been wanting to go there forever!

Here’s the lineup so far:

¨       Little Richard
¨       Dick Dale
¨       The Rockats
¨       Vicky Tafoya
¨       The Blue Caps w/Graham Fenton
¨       The Cleftones
¨       Alton & Jimmy
¨       Andy Anderson
¨       Sid & Billy King
¨       Lee Dresser & the Krazy Kats
¨       Si Cranstoun
¨       Ruby Ann
¨       Ray Collins Hot Club
¨       Haystack Hitones
¨       Mello Jo & Hitones
¨       May Ann & Ragtime Wranglers
¨       Graham Fenton
¨       Kieron McDonald & Hitones
¨       Annie & the Malagueta Boys
¨       Rockets
¨       Cool Cat Cry
¨       Janis Martin Tribute w/Marti Brom & Rosie Flores
¨       Rip Carson
¨       Hi Qs
¨       Phat Cat Swinger
¨       Rip Em Ups
¨       Lil Mo & the Dynaflos
¨       Nikki Hill
¨       Rockin Roy Orbison Show featuring Marcel Riesco
¨       Smokehouse Dave
¨       West Coast Ramblers
¨       Sabres
¨       Hi Lo Playboys
¨       Cash o Riley
¨       AquaSonics
¨       Hard Fall Hearts
¨       Rod & the Tone Masters
¨       Ernie Vargas & the Steady Rollers
¨       Dead Zeds Chopper
¨       Rockin' Rick & Rhythm Wranglers
¨       Crazy Joe
¨       The Devil's Daughters
¨       Gamblers Mark
¨       Dawn Shipley & the Sharp Shooters
¨       Whisky Kiss
¨       Golden West Trio
¨       Western Starlanders
¨       Gino & the Lone Gunmen
¨       Twisting Tornados
¨       La Cholita & the Kreeps
¨       Straight Shooter
¨       Johnny Deadly Trio
¨       Crown City Bombers
¨       Jonny B & the Avenues
¨       Danny Kay & the Nightlifers
¨       Eugene Chrysler
¨       Rayford Brothers
¨       Roy Rapid & the Rhythm Rock Trio
¨       Rattle Rockin' Boys
¨       Maureen & the Mercury Five
¨       Jinx Jones
¨       Tennessee Voodoo Coupe
¨       Dixie Leadfoot
¨       The Poppin' Fire Crackers
¨       Vintage Vandals
¨       Switchblade 3