I had a great birthday weekend. Along with our newlywed friends, Lori and Greg, we went candlepin bowling. It's a New England thing. And my bowling expert brother also told me, it's also a Canadian thing. As the commercial around here goes, "It's candlepin! It's candlepin!" They make it sound so fun!
Three of us had never played a "string" of candlepin before. It's a mix between bowling and skee-ball, and surprisingly harder than regular bowling, even though you get three balls with which to try to knock all the pins down. None of us broke 100, which I am told by Greg is a good score. I read online that no one has ever gotten a perfect 300 score. The high score record is somewhere around 240. The alley was very retro and on the second floor of a building in Scituate, that we didn't even know existed when we lived there. Bummer. It was wicked fun and cheap. We will definitely be playing again.
Afterward, we took a little stroll down to the Scituate beach. It's a birthday tradition now. And then we went back to our place, made pizza, and enjoyed the wonderful birthday cake Lori made for me. :) So nice! Matt, not a cake guy, liked it quite a bit and gave me rave reviews of the sprinkles.
Aside from the birthday fun, we got a ton of errands and neglected tasks done. Today we finally dealt with my ailing car, which I haven't drive in several weeks. We called a tow truck because we couldn't get it started yesterday, and the tow truck guy started it right up. Figures. But it's still sputtering so we drove it to the mechanic and dropped it off.
I have a new (used) car picked out, but we're going through a drawn out transfer of ownership process, having to deal with multiple loans and whatnot. I'm hoping I have it sometime soon after Labor Day. It still makes me cringe a little, having to buy a new car. It took me a couple months to sort out what was most important to me: size, gas mileage, cost, features, make, model, domestic/foreign, etc. In the end, gas mileage won out. Couldn't afford a hybrid, so a Honda Civic was about the next best thing. I really wanted to buy American. I really did. And if I bought new, I probably would have. But American automakers are just so behind in this whole hybrid/fuel efficiency thing. It's really sad how poor gas mileage is in most cars. I applaud Ford for making a hybrid Escape. It looks pretty cool, although it was out of my price range for now. But for some reason, there is a proliferation of V6 and 4x4 gas guzzlers out there. What gives!
Which leads me to a plug of sorts. Matt and I went to see Inconvenient Truth this afternoon. SEE IT! You have to deal with a bit of doomsday stuff (which seems to be a theme in many movies these days) and a little too much political slickness from Al Gore, but the argument he presents is really compelling. I mean REALLY REALLY compelling. Having spent our summer vacation walking on the snow at Rainier, it was really powerful and chilling (no pun intended). We'll be buying new energy efficient light bulbs this week. And we're reading more about this company called NativeEnergy that "helps you help build Native American, farmer-owned, and charitable purpose renewable energy projects that create social, economic, and environmental benefits." Interesting stuff.
Oh, and I also want to include a link to my Uncle Mark's new website and blog about being a writer. It's pretty slick. He has this third book coming out very soon. It's affordably priced, he's a great writer, and the money will help support by cousins! :) So buy it and enjoy! For those of you who want an autographed copy, I might be able to arrange it for a nominal fee. ;)