19 July 2007

Oregon! It's Way Better Than Utah!

That was our mantra for the weekend: "Oregon! It's way better than Utah." Allow me to explain why.

When I say that, I'm not talking about the Utah known for its snow and ski resorts. I'm not talking about the Utah where all of my family lives. I'm not talking about Moab, Park City, Sundance or anything even slightly interesting or exciting. Utah, for me, is school. Utah is the two square miles I live in all year. I work, study, and play within that square mile for most if not all of the year. That's why all weekend long we said, "Oregon! It's way better than Utah."

Now that's out of the way, I'll explain what I did in Oregon.

Last semester, Audrey, a girl from my ward, invited a bunch of people (more like 3 or 4 people) up to Oregon to go rafting. I ended up being the only one that stuck with it, and thus had to travel up to Oregon all alone. MapQuest said the trip would be around 11 hours, so I told myself I could do it in 10. When I finally made it to Audrey's house, I'd been driving for 12.5 hours...and I was tired.

I was trying to take a self-portrait as I got onto the freeway in Boise. Traffic started moving while I was posing, thus explaining my worried face.

I drove up on Thursday and got to Oregon around 8 pm. On Friday, Audrey took me on a tour of the local waterfalls. They were beautiful. The best part may be that they were within about 20 minutes of Audrey's house in the Portland area.

This is Multnomah Falls, the second longest waterfall in the States or something like that.

As if it couldn't get any better, after the waterfalls we went to Burgerville. I ordered a burger, which was good, but I also ordered a raspberry shake, which was divine. We ate there on Friday and Saturday, wished we could have on Sunday, and Monday as I was driving home a sign on the side of the interstate that said, "Last Burgerville for 84,000 miles," or something like that, prompted me to get off the road and buy another shake. I miss Burgerville.

Friday night we went to a YSA sponsored boat dance that went down then up then down and up the Willamette (will-LAH-mut) River. The river passes right through downtown Portland, and gave us a great vantage point to the city.

I stayed at Audrey's house all weekend, where I met her mom, sister, brother, brother-in-law, aunt, niece, 2 uncles, 2 dogs, cat, and friends. Hopefully I didn't leave anyone out of that. I enjoyed meeting all of them, but I especially enjoyed meeting Louis, the chihuahua. He may have been yappy and cursed with bad breath, but I loved him anyway, and by the end of the weekend was ready to bring him home with me. The sad part is that I think Audrey's family was ready to let Louis come to Provo as well.

Saturday morning was the big day. We woke up not too early to drive out to the Deschutes River. There were six people in our group, three of whom I already knew (Audrey, her friend Colin, and Rachel Aina who lives in Oregon but was in our ward last year). Jennifer and Erin were the other two. PS, the thumbs up was very much included in as many pictures as possible.

Rachel and me posing on the river after she had just fallen out. Fortunately, I didn't fall out on any of the rapids. I even rode the raft "bronco" hoping for some excitement, but didn't get kicked.

Audrey had told stories about a certain rapid named Boxcar (pictured above somewhere in the background). Last year she fell out of the boat at that rapid and was recycled under water in the current for some amount of time. I think she hit that rock right behind her head in the picture. She still has a game hip from the accident. She made sure we all remembered that and respected the river. I think we all gained an appreciation for the power of the river when we turned around after a rapid and realized our guide had fallen out! He was okay and managed to keep his hat and glasses on through it all.

I took this picture after we crossed the class 4 rapid. Unfortunately, I can't remember its name. It was an exciting ride and kept us on our toes for a good minute. That's Colin (the guide) with the hat and glasses.

This is a picture of Charlotte, as in Charlotte's Web. She's a stupid toy that Marianne got from Burger King or something. She's been to Hawaii and Lake Powell and almost made it to Nashville and Honduras (I accidentally left her in my car). I decided I needed some company on my trip, so I brought her with me to Oregon. She didn't actually go rafting, mainly because my only pocket was over my butt and I didn't want to be sitting on Charlotte all day long. I left her in the car.

On Sunday we went to Church, sat around for a while, and then went to Washington (the state) so that I could say I had been there. One more state off the list (or on the list, I guess).

Monday morning Audrey and I went to Krispy Kreme, thus fulfilling a lifelong dream of mine to eat donuts in Portland. I left Portland at about 11 am, and made it back to Provo by 10:30 pm. Taking account for the time change, it only took me 11.5 hours to get home! I would've died if it had taken another hour.

And now you know why we said, "Oregon! It's way better than Utah."

07 July 2007

July 5th, then 4th, then 3rd...it's how the pictures uploaded.

The winning team...if you want to know of what, read further.
All of us!
Group hug.

The Friday night Sonic crew. We usually work 'til 10 or 11, and then we all go out...it works out nicely. Last week we started playing street hockey in the Macey's/Sonic parking lot. We round up all of our car and play between them all...don't worry dad, it's a lightweight plastic ball, so no dented cars.
Meghan and Bethany.
Hard core! I guess bare feet are better than sandals.
Good thing somebody had the medical tape.

Sorry, the pictures are a little out of order. This is the day of the 4th. I got back to the parade route at 8 AM. I was feeling generous, so I bought bagels for everyone. This is Meghan, the organizer of the camp out.

The night before there were a lot more of us...this is the small group that stuck it out for the whole shebang...is that how you spell shebang? Notice I'm wearing my one patriotic-like shirt...thanks to dad and Harley Davidson.

Apparently, Meghan knows Rob Moncur, my companion from the MTC. I was surprised to see him there. He was smart and brought a tent...so he stuck it out all night.

My tire has a nail in it. Hopefully I can get it fixed today, but until then I'll be frequenting the free air pumps of Provo. I was forced to buy a tire gauge...at least it was only $3.50.

I had to work the night of the 4th...thus no pictures. However, work was pretty cool. I was up in the President's Loge (that's right, loge...) for Stadium of Fire. I served the likes of Glen Beck, Orrin Hatch, Gov. Huntsman, Elder Bateman, and Pres. Samuelson. Unfortunately, we had to leave before Brooks and Dunn performed. We finished up right before fireworks, so we all went up to the Skyroom to watch...it was good bonding. The fireworks were good, but it's not the same when you can't hear the noise of the fireworks shooting up and exploding.

The night before the 4th was spent on the streets of Provo. A bunch of people from catering got together and camped out on the street. I was going to stay the night, but at 3 AM I decided that my real bed that was three blocks aways was much better than the streets. Devon, I think we should start a Ron Paul Revolution... To solve our boredom problems, I made up games like see who has the sparkler that burns the longest. My leg was slightly burned in the process...but only slightly. The funny things we do when we're really tired.

01 July 2007

A Week In The Life...

So I went around this afternoon to take some pictures to put up here on my blog. Hopefully this will fill you in on what I've done this week and what my life in Provo is really like!

Brooks and Dunn are coming on Monday (tomorrow) for the Freedom Festival's Stadium of Fire. I'm not a huge Brooks and Dunn fan, but at least BYU is letting famous, non-lds artists come perform on their campus. I'm excited serve them on the 4th.

On Saturday night I was in the ballroom serving 680 Freedom Festivalers. It was pretty hectic, especially since I had to serve the three tables right in front of the podium. I didn't realize it when I started, but Elder Featherstone was at my table.

On Friday night I was at the conference center serving a ward party/luau. That wasn't that exciting. The exciting part was the entertainment in the other banquet. As I was getting the back ready to clear the banquet floor I heard Carmen Rasmusen singing in the other room. I guess it's not that great, anyway, since she did live in Helaman Halls my freshman year. Then again, Marie Osmond was taking psych classes my freshman year as well...we didn't wait outside of her classroom to see her, I swear!

They've already torn down W and V Halls, and as soon as EFY is over, Q is coming down as well. I decided I better get a picture before it's too late. If you look closely, you'll see I've got the thumbs up, but I'm not smiling.

My friend Lindsay was taking carillon (bell) lessons during Spring Term. One night before one of her lessons she needed to practice, so we went with her to the tower. We were then taken up to where we never thought we'd go...the top of the bell tower. It was great, and while Lindsay was practicing at the bottom of the tower, we watched episodes of Arrested Development at the top...until BYU security guards heard us, climbed the stairs, and out of breath told us that it was too much of a liability for us to be up there. We climbed down, but we still know where the key is if we ever want to climb back up!

A week ago on Saturday was the big dedication day for the Hinckley Building. All sorts of VIPs showed up for the event, but I don't think they realized that all night before the dedication there were painters, tilers, etc. literally putting the building together. I got there at 5:30-ish to set things up for Pres. Hinckley's birthday bash, but unfortunately I didn't get to stick around...I had to work on another event elsewhere.

Over the last few weeks, it seems like Utah County has been on fire. On Friday, Squaw Peak went up in flames. Marianne and I went to check things out. Below, we are reenacting our spectatorship.

And of course, the thumbs up.

Marianne's sister-in-law is volunteering for the Stadium of Fire, and on Thursday (I think) we got to drive golf carts from the Riverside Country Club to Lavell Edwards Stadium. There were six drivers, and we lined up like ducklings from the CC to the stadium! It was AMAZING.

I took this after I went golfing with Cody. I was a little burnt. I took golf lessons six years ago and had not been back on a golf course (to play golf) since then. I used Cody's old clubs, and it was fun. I wore the visor so I could play the part. I was also wearing argyle socks, but didn't get a picture of them.

My renouned self portraits.

This is where I go running every day. I'm getting bored with this blog, so I hope I don't bore everyone that reads this. If I do, sorry...it's pretty boring.