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We drove up to Portland on Friday morning. The drive was counter commute so it wasn't too bad. I was behind the wheel and needed something I could listen to without concentrating on, so up until we hit I-5 I had "The Last Five Years" playing. I like that musical - I like the unconventional story telling and the range of musical styles used in the songs. Neither Cathy or Jamie are blameless in their relationship falling apart although by the way the story is told, it's easy for one to sympathize with Cathy while blaming everything on Jamie (after all, he did cheat on her). However, it's fun to try to look at it from Jamie's side, or at least try to. Unfortunately, and perhaps this is because I'm a woman, I think he's being selfish and none of the songs make him seem particularly anything more than just shallow and unrealistic.

The drive through the bay area was a mix of sun and fog. There was a part just beyond Richmond where through the fog you could see the ghostly outlines of trees and houses. Crossing the Carquinez Bridge was just driving through a cloud. On the other side when I-80 dips down to Vallejo and skirts the edge of the bay, the fog simply stopped. Over the water was a wall of fog that slowly dispersed as it cross the highway and into the fields. December had come and Old Man Winter woke up from the North and just sat his big butt down on the bay area.

By the time we hit the main highway up to Portland I was ready for the BIG book on tape: Unseen Academicals by Terry Pratchett. It saw us through all the way up to Portland and even back down a ways. It's hard for me to fully concentrate on a book on tape (I'm more visual than I am aural) but it still provided a wonderful background for the ride. I much prefer reading though, I like how the pacing goes in my head. While I was listening to the book I kept thinking about how long it was, where he was going with the story, and whose story is this actually? Pratchett's books are always kind of like that, but I think it translates better when I read it then it does when I listen to it.

By 12:30 we had reached Shasta City and we were both appalled by how low lake Shasta was. I said 30 feet, Jonathan guesses more like 50. I could probably look it up by I'm lazy. The lake was ringed by a tall wide band of red earth topped by the tree line. The sky was crystal clear blue and Mt Shasta was brilliant white against it.

We got into Portland at about 6:15pm and after a drive of perfect weather, right as we stepped out of our car to walk up to our Bed and Breakfast, it started to hail. Luckily that's the only inclamate weather we got the whole weekend.

Tomorrow: The Lion and The Rose Bed and Breakfast, and Portland Zoo Lights
I directed L5Y this past year. The challenge is to make Jamie 'not the bad guy' but I think we did it. We really explored Cathy's faults and Jamie's reasons. I think we succeeded in it. It's a beautiful, sad, and funny show with great music. The Jamie in the Broadway version is way more arrogant than ours was... I think that helped us.

Aw yay, you get to see zoolights! I miss that display. I might take Liz to it in a week.