Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Apples, Anaheim, and Celine

I went to visit my friend Lisa over Thanksgiving weekend. She and her husband Matt live in Anaheim Hills and recently had to evacuate due to the wildfires in CA. Luckily, their house is still in one piece and I still got to make the trip out!

Saturday morning we drove up to the Oak Glen Apple Orchard with some friends of Lisa & Matt's. We had a nice lunch while there (and yes, my salad had apples on it!) and we visited several little shops with food items and crafts.

Lisa and Kel

Matt, Lisa and Kel

Apple butter was definitely a popular purchase of the day. But none for me, as I didn't want to have to check my bag! Before we left, the guys insisted on buying these 5-pound apple pies. I mean, really...isn't this a little much?!

I have to say...I had a piece and there is definitely such a thing as too many apples. The apple-to-crust ratio was way out of whack, and I could have used a little more cinnamon and sugar and a little less apples. But, apples were their big thing, so I guess I understand. Mamaw, I'll take your apple pie any day!! wink

And then Saturday night, it was Celine. After waiting a full hour to go 0.5 tenths of a mile to get into the parking lot of the Honda Center, the Celine Dion concert was AMAZING. Lucky for us, she had an opening act, which we missed entirely, but we didn't care. The whole time we were creeping along in traffic we were really worried, as the ticket didn't state there would be an opening act...what it did say was the event started at 8:00....we parked at 8:20 and got to our seats inside at 8:30. However, she didn't come on stage until 8:50. Whew! And, we were so lucky she was even singing at all, as she had canceled approximately 12 shows before the Anaheim show due to illness...in fact, the Anaheim show was her first show back! Since all the stars had aligned for us, we were counting our blessings and were very excited for the show. I have to say, she is the best voice I have ever heard. You know how sometimes you go to a concert and are disappointed in the singing performance of the artist? Many times I have thought, "Wow, they sound so much better on their CD." Well, none of those thoughts even crossed my mind. She is absolutely phenomenal in person...even better than the CD version.

She went through seven outfit changes and definitely tried to pull off a more contemporary show with some creative dancers. But she seems to truly enjoy her job. She was very emotional and nervous, as it was her first show back... and she seems like a genuinely nice person. The only thing I found a bit cheesy were her fist pumps and her attempt to mug it up for the camera at points. However, she sang "The Prayer", which truly made my night, as it was one of the special songs I chose to be sung at our wedding. Her vocal range is just incredible and I am so glad I am able to say I've seen her sing in person. Definitely a one-of-a-kind experience and I would do it again...and again.

[Kelly Swift, OC Register]

[Kelly Swift, OC Register]


Monday, December 1, 2008

The Terminal

Our trip to the Tahiti airport took about 10 minutes. When we got there, we were amazed at the small size of the terminal. It was basically a counter to check-in, a bar, and a few benches.

I was a little concerned as they stated that luggage could not exceed 44 pounds and I knew mine, in fact, did. But, I quickly learned that they didn't really care much. Their method of weighing luggage was putting every piece of luggage they had on a scale at once. cool

While we waited, since we got there really early, we had a drink at the bar. We spoke to a nice guy from New York while at the bar, who was trying to figure out what converter he needed so he and his wife could charge their camera. He was a marine and he was a little frightened about riding in the small prop plane we were taking to Moorea. Maybe that in turn should concern us? Nah. wink

Once we were allowed to board, we took our pick of the 8, yes 8 exclaim, seats available on the plane. We had to duck to get in and there was definitely no room for any extra bags...or our legs for that matter!

Six of the eight seats were facing forward and the other two were facing backward. The pilots were completely visible to us, which was a different experience than we're used to.

The marine kindly snapped a picture of us during our adventure.

As we were flying along feeling every bit of turbulence and all the bumps, Nate took some aerial pictures.

Moorea is surrounded by a reef, which is evident from these pictures. So the waves crash way out at the reef, away from land. Nate thought it was super cool that we could see the pilots and the runway as we were landing. I think I like traveling on the big Boeing planes much better. razz

We ultimately landed and arrived safely. Quite the experience.

The most entertaining part was when we went to find our transportation to the resort. Our reservations were written down in the book below...a bit different from how we operate back home!

Next up, our gorgeous bungalow in Moorea...


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