Friday, August 14, 2009

Road Trip: Napa, Day Two - Around Town

Another day in Napa closes, and so I sit here and type another blog post. I hinted in my last post that I might have some wine tonight, that, however, is waiting for tomorrow. Tonight, I… well that’s the end of the story, let me start at the beginning.

This morning I awoke, my head still hurting some, but much improved from the conditions of the night before. I took some more decongestant/acetaminophen hybrid and then launched into my morning prayers. My church, Soul Survivor, is doing a twenty-four hour prayer vigil this week. For every hour of the week, there is a church member who is spending that block of time praying for the church and her community. My hour is eight to nine, and I began the task, unfortunately not finishing the full hour because my sister left for Target and I had to go with her. I cannot speak for the rest of my congregation, but I am definitely still learning this business of being a man of prayer. I must say however, that three things have been invaluable assets during times of extended prayer: The Bible, The Book of Common Prayer and the gift of tongues. The last only God can give, but the other two are easily available. If you don’t have one or both of them, you can buy it, or even find free versions of the texts.

But I digress… Around 8:30 or so, Joy, my dad and I went to Target to buy essential items for her household, as well as several essential items I had forgotten to pack (make a list, make a list, check it twice). After Target, we dropped Joy off at a her first work-training meeting. We had a little trouble finding the place because for some reason it was in the High School District Office (odd because my sister is a special needs preschool teacher). After dropping Joy off, my dad and I went to Home Depot (more stuff for Joy’s apartment) and then to downtown Napa for lunch and perambulation.

We ate again at the little CafĂ© and then strolled over to the Oxbow market so my dad could see it. This time we stopped at the Tea shop and tasted several of their teas (for free too). We also tried the Apollo Oil at the Olive Press, which is apparently rated the number 10 olive oil in the whole world. It had a rich heavy taste, and, had I the spare change, I would have gotten a bottle of it ($20 a pop). Finally, we went into the Cheese Shop and I tried several of their cheeses. My favorite was an extremely sharp cheddar that melted in your mouth. That cheese, btw, was about $20 a pound. I mentioned before how excited I was to see that they had a local produce grocer in the Oxbow, if you want a detailed explanation as to why, I suggest picking up a copy of Deep Economy, it’s a great read and will deeply impact the way you view the world. In short though, local foods are better for the environment, the economy, your health and the taste of your food.

After visiting the Oxbow, we went to try and find a way down to the riverside trail. The river is fronted by a series of buildings with a very European look to them and it makes for a wonderful walk. Many of the stores along the front are closed for construction, and we had some trouble finding our way down, but we finally found an entrance at the back of the Napa General Store/Restaurant/Wine Tasting Bar (because you know, everything in Napa has Wine Tasting… even the Whole Foods Market). We took the river trail back to the lot where we had parked Joy’s car and drove to pick her up from the meeting.

After returning to Joy’s apartment, we piled as much of her preschool teaching items as we could into her Car and she and my dad drove over to the preschool to drop it off in her room (and it really is her room, unlike at her last job she doesn’t share it with another teacher, very exciting for her). While they drove there (no room in the car for me and the boxes of stuff both) I wrote up my blog post about yesterday’s adventures on my HTC Touch Pro 2.

When they returned we left for more adventures in downtown Napa, but first we stopped at Walmart for Joy to pick up dishes for her apartment. While there, Joy told me that one of her aids is Deaf, something very exciting for her because she took quite a few years of ASL.

 We had been told there would be a free concert in this little park by the river (another thing we had some trouble finding) but when we arrived there were no musicians there. We were informed that because the Napa County Fair was on, the event had been cancelled, but they apparently have them every Friday night under normal circumstances, so that’ll be something else for Joy to enjoy (she very much loved to attend the free park concerts back home). We again went to Oxbow Market for dinner and ice cream. The ice cream is all natural and the shop sells “The World’s Most Expensive Ice cream Sundae” and “The World’s More Most Expensive Ice Cream Sundae.” Both cost thousands of dollars and involve supporting a cause, the first being local land and the second being global warming awareness (the buyer treks up to Mount Kilimanjaro, where the founder of the ice cream shop hand makes an ice cream sundae from the mountain’s glacier, which is said to be disappearing due to global warming).

After ice cream, we went to the local Peet’s Cofee and Tea so my sister and I could use the wireless (I needed to access the UCLA website, which I can’t do from my phone).  The coffee, as usual, was great and so was the atmosphere. We also checked out the Trader Joes and Whole Foods Market, which were in the same shopping center.

Finally, we headed back to Joy’s apartment and dad helped Joy set up her TV, sound system and DVD player, after which I set to work on this blog. Good night everyone and sleep well. I hope to have another blog for you tomorrow.