Tuesday July 7th
This was hitting the road day for me. I grabbed the rental car around 7 am and was on the road by 10am. I could not take off earlier because I HAD to watch the days Tour De France. This has been a total obsession every July since Lance Armstrong won his second Tour. I had caught a small and random story in the NY Times online about this American that was expected to win the hardest bike race in world. So, ever since, each July I get up around 4 or 5am and watch the days stage.
So around 10am after the Tour was all wrapped up for the day I headed west towards to California and then turned north towards Washington state and Tacoma. I got all the way to Santa Nella and the Pea Soup Andersons on the I-5 for the night. I slept so hard and had a really slow morning waking up on..
Man was it hot in Palm Desert - and I was no where near my pool!
Wednesday July 8th
I had to miss the days stage of the tour so I could get driving. I drove 11 hours on the 7th and I knew I had at least another 12 to do today. I found good coffee at a Starbucks before I hit the highway and headed north. The drive was long and the ever-changing countryside was as amazing as always. I love to see the shift from desert to see trees and to have that change to farmland as I cross over the Grapevine into the southern end of the Central Valley of CA and drive north. I spent both days listening to books on my iPod and chatting with friends on my cell phone. I got into Tacoma around 9pm and crashed soon after watching a wrap-up of the days tour stage. Lance Armstrong was in second place, only behind by 2 one-thousandths of a second. Could not be more exciting!
Mt. Shasta in northern California.
Thursday July 9th
Got up early to accomplish my morning tasks and to watch the Tour and to achieve alertness as slowly as possible. I was tired and my back was killing me. I had to get to the venue by 11-ish to make sure that I was ready for the Preview from 5 to 8pm. This year is a bit weird. My roomies of the last 2 years chose not to come as well as the 2 people that I was to share a booth with. So even though there are totally excellent people here in Tacoma this year: my normal routine has been interrupted and I miss Gail & Meesh totally.
Once you cross the Oregon stateline trucks can haul 3 trailers. SCARY!
Friday July 10th
Got up early to, oh surprise, watch the days stage of the tour. Today was the first full day of the Puget Sound Bead Festival and the crowds were busy and people were buzzing around all day long. I have a very nice day and sales were very nice indeed. At the end of the day one of my most favorite pieces sold. My meteor pendant and a necklace were sold to a very nice lady that thought the piece was a cool as I do. I am please to see it go out in the world and to be going to a good home. It is really rather bitter sweet for me in some ways, it is really one of my favorite pendants that I ever made. I will never forget waking up around 3 or 4 in the morning and just knowing how I wanted to set the stone and I worked for several hours till I accomplished my goal.
So I am all tucked in for the night and I just need to go to sleep early and try to rest up a bit. I am going to take of directly after the show in Sunday and get at least 4 or 6 hours of driving in before I stop for the night so I can get home at a reasonable hour on Monday night and have all of Tuesday to accomplish required tasks.