Saturday, October 13, 2012

Hawaii and Victoria

The waterfall off Na Pali Coast
I don't know why it took us so long to get to Hawaii...oh, wait, I do.  The cost. However, it was worth every penny! We had a wonderful, relaxing, and beautiful trip.  We hiked down into a swamp, hiked part of the Na Pali coast trail, then hiked two miles inland to a gorgeous waterfall.  We went stand-up paddle boarding on a wide, flat river with blossoms floating past.  We took a boat tour of the Na Pali coast, swinging into sea caves and anchoring at the end to snorkle.  We watched crabs in the sand, lounged by the pool and had drinks from the pool bar.  We went with  honeymooners Allison and Owen to another beach and snorkeled more - saw lots of turtles that day.  We went to curbside, hole-in-the-wall cafes, and fancy-schmancy restaurants.  We went to the ritzy side of the island and strolled through shops and had a wonderful lunch from a natural foods grocery.  We shared a celebratory evening with bride and groom Stacey and Thom, and all our new in-law-in-laws.  We had a simply wonderful, wonderful time.  We'll be going back for sure.

Bamboo stand on our hike

View off trail near Waimea Canyon
 Our relaxing trip was followed by the start up of fall quarter at work, meeting my 18 new student-teachers. Eighteen! That's crazy, but I can already tell it's a great group.  We spent part of our first weekend home celebrating the retirement of one of Eric's high school buddies from 34 years of service with the Border Patrol and Customs.  It was fun seeing old friends.

I've spent the rest of my time since we got home working on my proposal.  I know it sounds crazy that I'm still working on the proposal rather than working on the full-meal-deal.  However, the proposal is part of the dissertation - chapters 1, 2, and 3.  Once I submit it (hopefully in about ten days), my advisor will read through it and make suggestions.  Once she is satisfied it will go to the second reader and I'll get more critiquing.  After both are satisfied, I have to defend it (answer questions about why I chose this and not that, or why I want to do this, instead of that).  Once I pass, I can submit it to the Institutional Review Board for approval.  That will take about six weeks, then I can finally start the research.  I'm hoping for January.  Wish me luck!

Somewhere on Victoria Marathon, with Margaret, photo by Marie Zornes
Finish chute, Victoria Marathon, with Margaret, photo by George Koski
Last weekend we went to Victoria for the marathon. It was a glorious fall weekend, unseasonably warm and sunny (by the way, that ended today, now we are in the midst of a wind and rain storm).  We took the ferry from Anacortes and enjoyed an almost three hour trip through the beautiful San Juans.  Marathon day was beautiful - almost too warm for me.  Margaret and I took the early start and I felt good till about mile 19, when I crashed hard.  I did finish though!  Not too bad, considering my longest run since May was 15 miles.  Once we finished, we walked a mile back to our hotel, used the spa to clean up, and drove across the island to catch one of the BC ferries.  Oh, my.  They are so big they look like cruise ships.  We sat on the sun deck and saw more beautiful islands slide by. We drove about a half hour to the border, and once over, went to one of our favorite breweries in Bellingham.  We were sitting there sipping our beer and waiting for dinner when I looked up and saw Riley and Emily in the entry!  A complete coincidence - they were in town with friends, visiting another friend up at WWU.  What a perfect way to end the day!

Eric and I after Victoria Marathon, photo by George Koski
That's about it.  Working on proposal, working with my student teachers, running five times a week, next marathon is Seattle Ghost.  I'm sticking to old favorites right now.  Thanks for reading!


Joe said...

Thanks for posting, Michelle!! Nice to see the pix and catch the news. So much more we can share via blogging but, boy, has blogging fallen out of favor. FB has taken over but I miss the depth here.

Ghost will be fun for you...yes, best to stay with the familiar when everything else is in flux!!

Irene said...

Thanks so much for posting! The pictures are wonderful and now I really want to go to Hawaii! I'm glad to see that you're still at the running AND those marathons... and with big smiles.