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May 30, 2003

Long week

This week has been extremely long. I had a good weekend but a lot has been going on at work. A lot to think about anyway. On top of that we've had some major network problems that sucked up an immense amount of time.

Anyway I'll try to post more this weekend. Sorry for the neglect.

Posted by beamz at 3:23 PM | Comments (0)

May 26, 2003

The holiday weekend

Spent most of the weekend relaxing. Cooked in the new George Foreman grill that did an ok job but not as good as a real grill or pan. We managed to accumulate a bunch of spin-offs of the venerable sandwhich iron including 2 George Foreman grills and a Quesadilla Maker.

We spent time with Kris's family today and played some badminton. I need to order some new rackets and also figure out how in the heck to make some better net posts because the 3 piece plastic ones SUCK.

Thanks to some suggestions from a friend of mine, I tried some new tricks with the onions and mushrooms topping the burgers last night. I sauteed them in olive oil, added sherry and a can of mushrooms and after the onions carmelized, added them to my burgers.

Posted by beamz at 10:12 PM | Comments (0)

May 24, 2003

Honeymoon part 2

I've been sick and stuff has hit the proverbial fan at work. Anyway as promised, here is part 2.

Day 4 - 5/19:
In an attempt to recover the previous day, we slept in until noon. After awhile we went out to the beach and lounged around. The weather was hot but nice and breazy. Dinner was a treat at the Ritz' restaurant called Fantino. It was a nice formal place and Kris' meal was good however mine could've used a bit more flavor. Here we are waiting for dessert.

Day 5 - 5/20:
We embarked on our journey to Chichen Itza around 8am. It's located in the state next to Quintana Roo called Yucatan. Our tour guide was great and explained everything from how Mayan's have evolved over time to their emphasis on time. About 30 minutes away from the main archaeological we stopped at a rest site which was more of a "take-the-tourists-money" shop. It's a shop meant for bargaining complete with credit card machines strung up to thin phone lines throughout the shop. I can not emphasize how much of a rip-off this place was but it was the only place we were probably going to be at that we could buy gifts and so on. The other reason Cancun is so expensive is because it's primarily only a tourist place and so prices on just about everything are hiked accordingly. We got pottery, glasses, some bracelets and t-shirts down to $12 a piece down from $20 which probably cost $6 to make.

Anyway we finally arrived at the site. They offered personalized Mayan calendars for $25 with the date of your choice so we picked up one with our anniversary date. After that we spent a bit of time with the tour guide as she explained things about Pok-Ta-Pok ball field, the main Mayan monument which is like a huge calendar with all sorts of interesting things to it. You can google around but the Mayan's who were obsessed with time were also amazing engineers. After the hour-long tour in the hot, humid, 101 degree weather, we stopped and got more to drink. We then made the decision to climb the main monument. The steps are steep and it was an exhausting climb but well worth the view. After we were done we went to the included luncheon which had some pretty good food and also some traditional mexican dancing. The dancing was a joke with what appeared to be 3 guys and girls in their late teens who had no rhythm and spent more time laughing and joking than dancing. We slept on the ride home exhausted and full of food.


Day 6 - 5/21:
Our flight wasn't until 3pm but the tour company shuttle came to pick us up at 12:30pm. We got through the airport and waited around for a couple hours. We got into Indy late but the trip home wasn't so bad.

Overall our trip was nothing short of amazing and if we felt better we would went into the city and done a little more. The Ritz-Carlton Cancun is an excellent hotel and Best Day was also a great ttour company we would use again and recommend. Everyone there was extremely kind and gracious as well.

Here are photos from our trip.

Posted by beamz at 11:23 PM | Comments (0)

May 22, 2003

Blog go bewm! and... I'm BAAACK

It seems that my auto-rebuild to keep my side-rail current made the blog go boom because there hasn't been any new content put up. Oh well, there's a bunch of quirky CRAP that needs to be repaired that I'm learning about.

I'm BACK! from our honeymoon in Cancun, Mexico. Overall we had a great stay that lasted 5 nights. Before we left and just as we arrived there, both my wife and I got colds which drained us a bit. I decided not to take the laptop but it was cool to learn that the Ritz-Carlton Cancun has in-room wifi connections for those who desire to stay connected.

Day 1 - 5/16:
We arrived in the afternoon and got bombarded by people offering free tickets to outings as long as you went to a 2 hour time-sharing sales pitch. We declined, took the shuttle to the Ritz and layed down for a couple of hours. After that we got up ate at the casual restaurant which happened to be having a seafood buffet. The food was ok but pricey.

Between the nap and food we met with a representative from the tour company, Best Day which Continental was using for the free shuttle service. We organized 2 tours, one of which was at the nature park XCaret and the other at the archeological site Chichen Itza.

Day 2 - 5/17:
We spent Saturday relaxing. We woke up late, ate breakfast in the room and then went around 2pm to lay on the beach under a little cabana. The weather was very hot but at least it wasn't raining. Our goal was to lay low and try to fend off the cold.

Day 3 - 5/18:
The day started with an early (6:45am) wake-up call and breakfast at 7am. We were to be picked up at around 8am by the tour bus for XCaret. We took swim suits but of course forgot towels and flipflops which we packed in a new North Face lumbar pack we picked up on one of the outlet mall trips we made with my family. XCaret has a really neat underground river that you can rent snorkel gear and swim through. I don't remember the length of it but it takes approximately 30 minutes with snorkel gear and 45 minutes to an hour without. The bad thing is that you end up fighting past large groups of people in the water who are either taking their time or just sitting there splashing eachother and talking. The 62 degree water could've been considered cold but to us it was pure heaven since it was at least 90-95 degrees out. After the river we spent some time roaming around looking at the butterfly area, a jaguar, orchids, and mushroom exhibits.

The real treat was at 7pm when we got to watch the Mayan ball game of "Pok Ta Pok." It's a little bit like basketball but you use your hip, knees, and shoulders to hit the ball through a hoop that's on an embankment. That's a gross oversimplification but it's the gist of it. Following that we got to watch some re-enactments of Mayan warriors and chiefs doing different ceremonies. It was excruciatingly hot and the tour guide who spoke severely broken English didn't wait for the 50-75 people in our group to catch up and so we caught *none* of the narration.

After that we got to enjoy a 1hr show in an stadium area that was packed. We got to watch a lot of traditional Mexican dancing and songs. The natives in the crowd were so into the show and it was definitely the gem of the whole XCaret experience. The show was a huge dose of Mexican culture for us. They don't have the show every evening and you have to take a late bus back to Cancun because the normal buses leave at 5pm, however it was worth every minute of it.

Day's 4-6 to follow tomorrow

Posted by beamz at 1:32 AM | Comments (0)

May 11, 2003

We're married.

Topic says it all. It was a great ceremony and reception. Now to do family things! Also, my sister said some great remarks. Anyway I'll post more later.

Posted by beamz at 11:46 AM | Comments (2)

May 9, 2003

Sorry for the light blogging....

I apologize for the continuous light blogging. No I'm not taking a haitus, I'm just really busy. Preparing for my wedding has been extremely time consuming.

On a wonderful note, all of my immediate family from Thailand has arrived and my mom is coming down from Michigan today for the rehearsal dinner. It's too bad more people couldn't have come from Thailand.

Blogging will continue to be pretty light for at least the next couple of days. Until then, enjoy some of the links in my blogroll. The next time I post, I'll most likely be a married man unless some situation like in Runaway Bride happens.

Posted by beamz at 10:04 AM | Comments (0)

May 6, 2003

Vegas Pics

The pictures from my Vegas trip are finally posted.

Posted by beamz at 10:59 AM | Comments (0)

May 5, 2003

Thunderstorms

It was supposed to storm this afternoon and evening. It didn't. It was in the 70's with clear skies. It's supposed to storm all week except for Saturday. I hope it doesn't rain on Saturday, a wedding in the rain doesn't sound fun.

Joi has something to say about the U.S. finding WMD in Iraq but the real gems are in the comments.

Posted by beamz at 10:35 PM | Comments (0)

May 3, 2003

I've been horribly busy the

I've been horribly busy the last few days. Friday evening I went to pick up my birthday present at the local Apple store. The 30 gig iPod has become the latest member of my technology collection. There are a bunch of other things out there we could have spent $500 on but I wanted a slick looking portable hard drive combined with an mp3 player. Anyway, some eye candy will be up tomorrow including Vegas pics.

Posted by beamz at 11:34 PM | Comments (0)

May 1, 2003

One year older

Well, I'm one year older today but so much is going on that I didn't mind the fact that I spent the day at work at the evening in class.

Tonight I did a presentation on democracy, social software, morals and values. Before the presentation however, as we were discussing utilitarianism and pragmatism, I drew some similarities with the war in Iraq. The idea of making an "example" out of them is what I drew the contrast with. While I was commenting on the Iraq and utilitarianism parallel that the war had, a woman said war "something that doesn't need to be discussed." Awhile after my comments, I presented my ideas on social software and empowering people. I talked about forcing ourselves to examine our ideas by putting them up to a microscope.

After my ideas, in a stunning turn of events, this woman who said we should avoid discussion about war ditched her whole presentation and started talking about how her whole family is in the military, how individuals who haven't served really can't say anything about what soldiers do until they've done it themselves, and how they are fighting for pillars of our society such as free speech. I made a short rebuttal but it was too late and I for some reason couldn't disagree with war yet support the very people who are fighting it.

This has been all over the blogsphere lately with discussions on how people are villified like the Dixie Chicks and are called unpatriotic.

I also felt good about my social software discussion because I got to let a lot of people who aren't technology savvy know about platforms for free speech such as blogging.

Posted by beamz at 12:11 AM | Comments (0)