LAST WEEK AND CHRISTMAS WEEKEND
Finals week! Well, three days of finals for the students and four days of work for staff. They passed swiftly enough, maybe, even though some shenanigans happened and I’ll have families to call when I’m back to work during second week of break. Alas.
We spent our Christmas in Carmel by the Sea. We stayed at the Carmel Wayfarer Inn and had Christmas dinner at Flaherty’s Seafood Grill & Oyster Bar. We also hit A.W. Shucks Cocktail and Oyster Bar, Mulligan Public House, Alvarado Street Brewery and Bistro, and Brophy’s during our stay. I walked through the Coach Outlet store but somehow didn’t buy a single thing. Amazing. My thoughts on our accommodations and the places we ate and drank:
- Carmel Wayfarer Inn – I read some, hmm, interesting reviews of this place that had me wary of what we would find when we arrived. Lucky for us, we had a very nice room. It was big and had another little room that had two twin beds in it. (We ended up putting our luggage in there and spreading out our clothes, which was super convenient.) We were able to park in the tiny parking lot and since we had no plans to drive around while we were there, it was fine. The inn is older and dated to be sure, but our floors were new, it seemed, and everything was clean.
- A.W. Shucks Cocktail and Oyster Bar – We first visited this bar in April and just loved the whole vibe of it. Of course it had to be our first stop once we had settled into our room. We had the jumbo prawn cocktail and the crabmeat cocktail. For my drink, I chose the mai tai again. It was all so good. I think this needs to always be a place to stop whenever we’re in town. Maybe next time I’ll actually try some oysters.
- Mulligan Public House – Simply love this Irish bar! As in our previous visit, the ladies were running the place and it was great. I had this super delicious hot drink that had chocolate mix and I think peppermint schnapps? It was freakin’ amazing and I had two. We also ate more. I had the kobe beef sliders and onion rings. SOOO good.
- Alvarado Street Brewery and Bistro – We spent the bulk of our Saturday here because the 49ers were playing and we knew the bar would have the game on. Another place we’ll probably always visit whenever we’re in town. The game was great (Niners won!) and I had one drink before switching to soda. For food, I had the fish and chips and it was very good.
- Brophy’s Tavern – This pub was closest to the inn and they were open on Christmas Day! I think we were the first patrons to sit down and we stayed there for awhile, watching yet another football game. I had the grilled cheese and tomato bisque. It was a bit much for me but it was very good. I only had one drink, a Madden Mule, I think.
- Flaherty’s Seafood Grill and Oyster Bar – We had Christmas dinner here and it was pretty good. For my drink, I had the Ruby Slipper, which was a delicious concoction. For my appetizer, I chose the bbq oysters, which were so good! My soup was clam chowder and my main entrée was the shellfish risotto. My meal was delicious and filling. Hubby’s meal was not as satisfying but I think he enjoyed most of it nonetheless. The restaurant is small and cramped but our table wasn’t so bad even though we were flushed up against what should be the bar.
All in all, I loved that we were away for Christmas, spending it at our favorite place. We were smart about booking a dinner reservation but could have probably just had dinner at Brophy’s since they were open all day, like a normal day. I was pretty proud of myself, walking out of the Coach store empty-handed. Such will power!
THIS WEEK SO FAR
I’ve gotten into the habit of taking the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day off and it’s been rather glorious. In between cleaning the house (which is a chore I do not enjoy, let me tell you!), I read three or four romance novels. I love the easy reads and wow, Harlequin has a line called DARE that is extra spicy with decent plots. I’ve been enjoying those very much. 😉
We had our annual inspection and extended our lease for another year. Yah! The inspection was quick, less than five minutes. Love it!
TV & MOVIES
The Witcher: Blood Origin [Netflix] – We watched this in one sitting, I think? I wasn’t sure what to expect as some of the review blurbs I read were rather negative. I enjoyed it but I think it could have done with maybe one or two more episodes to round out the plot and characters.
Willow [Disney+] – We caught up on this one this week. Even though I do enjoy it for the most part, I still wonder– why? I don’t like being annoyed about characters but lord, the Kit character irritates me. She was less annoying in the latest episode and now Dove (I’ll call her that so as not to spoil too much) is the one annoying me. I don’t like being annoyed but now that we’re however many episodes in, I’ll keep watching.
National Treasure: Edge of History [Disney+] – I feel like I like this show in a grudging way. It brushes against my impatience with angsty stories. I was going to say with young adult angst but I don’t really care for middle aged people angst either. I do enjoy the adventure of the clues and such.
The Devil’s Hour [Amazon Prime Video] – I’m very much digging the mindbending vibe of this show. Is it time travel? Is it parallel universes? Is it multiverses? Yeah, it’s that kind of show and I don’t mind at all. Definitely an intriguing watch.
Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery [Netflix] – This movie was pretty good. I think I wouldn’t have minded watching it in the theatre but missed that little window so streaming it was for me. I have enjoyed mysteries since I was a kid and the whole Agatha Christie-esque feeling of this movie just tickles me. Daniel Craig is fun to watch as Benoit Blanc. Well done!
Black Adam [HBO Max] – I’m a DC comics girl but not the kind who’s read them all. I’ve only really read the Infinite Crisis run but I know a lot of the characters. I had never heard of Black Adam the character but I was still interested in seeing this movie. I wish it had been better! It had all the elements to be really good (hello, Dwayne Johnson!) but it just didn’t hit the right notes for me. My favorite character was Sarah Shahi’s because she got to yell at the so-called “heroes,” calling them out for their dumbassery. I’m sure I’ll watch it again, especially the mid-credit scene.
So apparently Miguel Ángel Silvestre was the popular one at my IG. Am I just fangirling him at the opportune time? My likes numbers are nothing compared to the fan accounts but they’re not bad for a mere fangirl like me. As popular as MAS is, his numbers do not compare to the ones I’d get for Sullivan Stapleton. I don’t know if Sully is popular now as he was during Blindspot but maybe I’ll do a test in 2023 to see if he still gets lots of likes.
END OF THE YEAR WRAP-UP
I don’t know that I have any thoughtful words about 2022. I think I had more happy days than not and if I didn’t, I think I did have balance, which is always my goal, no matter what. How about some random musings? Yes, let’s go with that…
- Travel – I traveled more this year than I have in the past. Jamaica, Nevada, then closer to home to Carmel by the Sea. I hope I get out of town just as often next year but we shall see…
- Work – So many changes and even though I had a recent disappointment, most of my work life has actually been enjoyable and challenging. My new boss is wonderful (how do I get so lucky with my bosses?), I celebrated 15 years with the district, I get along with my workmates, and I don’t dread getting up on work days. We did endure sad times when a long time employee died suddenly. A new person sits in that office now but his presence still lingers…
- Technology – I upgraded my Chromebook and my iPhone this year. Still need to put up that iPhone 14 Pro Max review. I am ever fascinated by tech stuff and how I can fit those things in my life…
- Drifting friendships – You get older and friends drift in and out of your life. Sometimes you keep in touch. Sometimes you reconnect. It takes effort to maintain relationships and sometimes you have to let go. Sometimes it’s a sad thing. Sometimes it’s a relief. Sometimes you just shrug and move along. No matter what, I do treasure my friendships and I’m grateful for the people in my life…
- Music – I discovered OPM! Well, I happened upon an Apple Music playlist that plays Original Pilipino Music (OPM) and not the old stuff! I’ve been longing for music with that R&B/pop flavor and so much of the OPM on that Apple Music playlist is just exactly what I want to hear. I don’t understand every single word of a song but I can understand the gist. I love discovering new artists…
One more day of 2022 to go. I don’t think I have any resolutions. I hope for more good days than bad for us all.
See you all on the other side!