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Make sure to wear some flowers in your hair?

I’ve been neglectful, I know… enough with the feigned guilt. The bad thing about putting off posting in one’s blog is that by the time that they actually feel they should blog, there is far too much to blog with.

Over the past month and half, there has been a lot that has been going on. The split-Christmas was an entirely new adventure, but a good one. We had a good time at my parents’ place and a good time at Jess’ place, although, I must admit I did leave the Hanson ranch rather disappointed. There was something seriously missing on my Christmas morning. You might assume that I am referring to my family… well, factually, you’d be correct, but I’m talking about the snow. My first Christmas in Bend and it was a chilling fifty-six degrees. What a rip-off.

Thanks to our stay at the Hanson ranch, Moose has become quite the ranch-hound. Riding in trucks, sleeping on hay bales, sleeping outside all night, wrangling and branding cattle. I swear that the pup never knew that we weren’t around him. He had a blast running around with one of the Hanson rottweilers, Chloe. This isn’t to say that Moose had a bad time at my folks’ home, quite the contrary, I’m sure he had a blast ripping down my mom’s Christmas lights or sampling the ornaments from the Christmas tree.

While Christmas was good, the real treat was the surprise that my mom and I cooked up for my dad. My mom had bought my dad a Grateful Dead t-shirt, book, and all sorts of over-price “fogey” souvenirs, and on Christmas, my dad finally guessed that he and I were going to San Francisco for a Phil Lesh and John Mayer concert. My dad was thrilled at the surprise.

The only problem with the trip was that it was all fake. Sitting in the Portland Airport “on our way” to San Francisco, my mom and I disclosed that my dad was actually going to the Holiday Bowl to watch the Ducks take on (and eventually lose to on a stupidly thrown red-zone pass) the Oklahoma Sooners in San Diego. Dad was even more thrilled, especially since he had convinced himself that getting tickets were impossible.

Well, he was close to being right, although that requires a whole other update that includes, Ticketmaster, UPS, and driving an hour only a couple of hours before flying south.

Ever since my dad found out about the actual trip, he mentioned a couple of times on how he should call his best friend Jerry in L.A. and see if he could hang out. I told my dad that, regrettably, that I didn’t even think about calling Jerry. Once at the motel, my dad and I had a delightful dinner consisting of nachos, potato skins, buffalo wings, and a varied mix of corona and bud light.

The next morning at exactly eight, I awoke to find a newspaper being shook back and forth under the door. I open the door, retrieve the paper and in walks my dad’s friend Jerry. My dad, still in bed, does a double take and then makes various comments, which are not suitable for the varied ages and mixed company of the Box of Whine readers. But I’ll translate:

Jerry: Hey Buddy!
Dad: What the feather duster?
Jerry: I drive all this way, and you use that kind of language?
Dad turning to me: you baroque symphony.

I know, two big tricks in two days, not very nice. But yes, I arranged for Jerry to show up. We then proceeded to head Mexico, Tecate to be exact (yes, like the beer), where we walked around for a couple of hours enjoying Mexican beer, fish tacos, and buying tequila. Fun time had by all.

After our little jaunt in Mexico, it was game time. Dad and I got to the Holiday bowl game early, which was good planning on our part. There were so many different things going on, it was really interesting. Not to mention, the Navy skydivers, the fireworks, and of course, the F-18 Hornet fly over. Overall, it was a great game, but of course (here comes the typical duck fan line) the ducks didn’t play as good as the could have and ended up loosing in the last minute. Regardless of the bad throw coupled with the bad play call, it was purely awesome.

Enjoy these photos from our trip: