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Location: Berkeley, CA

We're in the final stages of the countdown: three days to go before I leave for St. Martin. I keep thinking "it's only two weeks" because, you know, last time it was two months. But I seem to have forgotten that two weeks is a non-trivial trip in its own right. And so, here I am, going list-crazy of things to remember to pack, buying more books for my kindle, mapping out every day what we're going to do...

Oh, what, did that last one make you question my sanity? Yes, I'm serious. I've created a Google calendar and planned out every single day where we're going to have breakfast, lunch and dinner, and what beach we're going to visit that day.  It's amazing when you map out the list of places you want to go against 13 short days how quickly the time disappears. 

Of course, if it rains or a hungover develops, I'm screwed. But how likely are either of those things to happen? Oh. Right. Chance of thunderstorms every day in the forecast. And that's the less likely of the two...

As I've been mapping things out, I had to decide - if we're putting out a Grand Case Restaurant Guide, is it better to go back to the same restaurants we've already visited, or be sure to include a couple top restaurants outside Grand Case? I've decided repeats are more important. Though I almost always wrote up a blog post shortly after a good meal... well, there's just no substitute for going into the restaurant knowing you plan to analyze it. I'm excited to get to work properly on adding content for the book!

Meanwhile, Steve is working hard on the formatting of the book. It's kind of shocking what a design genius he is, especially for those of who knew him a decade ago when he owned red velvet couches... but I digress. He really does great design, whether it's a book, a presentation, a web site, doesn't matter. Mad skills.

So... you may have noticed that the pace of posts on has gone down, and I've restarted this blog. That's because posts now also show up on our Facebook fan page, which means we don't want to overdo it. We're working so hard to get people to subscribe, we don't want to drive them insane to the point that they unsubscribe. Hence the change in approach. 

On the home front, our downstairs office and future theater is shaping up nicely. Last week was a banner week on craig's list - made $1000 getting rid of old furniture. Who knew the "gently-used" bowflex would garner so much interest? Pure genius that site. Then yesterday our new sectional couch was delivered... or at least 3/4 of it was. When you're delivering a 4-piece sectional, of sage microfiber... wouldn't you wonder when one of the pieces is an orange leather loveseat? Seriously, the delivery guys were shocked when I explained that it was NOT part of my order. They even offered to leave it with me until the other piece arrives. Um... why would I want that in my house? And isn't there someone else who is going to be LOOKING for that piece and wondering why they received a left-arm sage chaise? But Apollo loves the new sectional; he was sound asleep on it within minutes, giving it the doggy snore of approval. 

The theater itself, well, that's not arriving until Aug 23rd. Apparently the screen needs to be custom cut, even though it's a standard size, and will take ~ 5 weeks. Ludicrous. But now we're on Amazon shopping Blu Ray discs, trying to decide what to have on hand for the premier. So far, we've got all trilogies in our basket: Lord of the Rings, Bourne Supremacy, Star Wars (only the original trilogy, obviously). In other words... don't expect to hear from me in late August. We basically need to finish the book before Aug 23rd or it might be Christmas before it gets out ;).

OK, back to the manic list-making in preparation for my trip. When is too early to bring out the suitcase and start actually packing without being declared clinically insane?

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