Friday, January 25, 2013

Catch Up

I'm going to write a separate Hawaii post but so far, 2013 has been pretty stellar.  NYE was a great success and the Hawaii trip was way too short!

My non-reading book club met on 1/9 at Extraordinary Desserts which has the most amazing cheese bar on Wednesday evenings.  There were two delicious Blues, two sheep milk cheeses, a coconut milk gouda and several others.  My piggalicious plate is shown above.  There may have been two, ha ha!  The women were great to talk to as usual and it was really a lot of fun!

That weekend, I went to a climber's party.  I've been rock-climbing a fair bit and am progressing reasonably well.  I'm pretty competitive and don't like being less skilled than others but that's ridiculous since I just started up again after a 13 year hiatus.

The weekend after was Matt and Michelle's housewarming party where we missed all the food trucks at 57 Degrees because we showed up too late.  I met a really nice MD/PhD student who just finished up her data collection and will be starting her MS3 year next Fall.  Prior to the housewarming party, I went out to dinner with our incoming intern, his girlfriend and SMS.

Edna had brunch at her place that Saturday and her awesome sister Janie was there.  I will really miss all the terrific people I've met since I've been here.

Saturday, January 19, 2013


On Thursday, I received confirmation that I'll be one of the ENT doctors in Yokosuka, Japan for two years starting in July.  While this is not what I wanted, I'm becoming more excited about it.  The main reason I wasn't excited was personal life reasons but it looks like things may work out so now I'm getting excited about all the positives that exist.  I loved Japan the first time I was there.  The travel opportunities and the cultural experience will be amazing.  I want to climb Mt. Fuji.  I'd like to go to Fuji Rocks.  Professionally, the job is great.  I'm out on my own (finally) and I feel really competent.  In addition, the graduating chief from Bethesda will be there and I already know (and like!) her from our overlapping time at MD Anderson.  So, it's definitely an exciting time!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New Year's Eve

New Year's Eve was awesome!  After a year hiatus, my friends and I decided to go back to Hotel Solamar!  We had gone for two years and then took last year off which was a sort of "meh" time at Starlite (I thought- early seating, no real DJ/dance floor).  We reserved the last big cabana.  It was a great deal- an $1100 minimum including tax/tip.  We pre-planned what drinks/bottles we were going to order so there were no end-of-the-night surprises made even more difficult by not being sober.  Win!

Before the night even started though, SMS wanted to take some pictures during the after sunset blue hour from my rooftop.  It was a pretty awesome setup and idea.  Unfortunately, I was a little nervous being the center of the camera's attention but SMS got some great shots.  It was an awesome way to document the end of 2012 and the early beginnings of something special.
SMS and I on the rooftop
Champagne!  It was an awesome NYE!!!

Also, the dress was quite a find from a few weeks prior.  The hair stylist I go to "currates" vintage clothing and this was on her rack.  It was the right size and $20.  Awesome!

Then, the dinner party started.  Friends brought assorted snacks and drinks.  I provided a "street taco" spread with oven-fried carnitas, chicken tinga, fresh chorizo and potato and a beef mixture.  They were all really good although the chicken tinga was my favorite.  The chips and tortillas were from El Indio and were excellent!  We missed the bus b/c I can't tell time and I couldn't find my wallet but ultimately, we made it to Hotel Solamar by 9ish.

Jenny, SMS and the awesome "street taco" spread!

Another new couple alert!
At the party!

Hotel Solamar was awesome.  I hung out and danced with my friends and in general, just had an awesome time celebrating the New Year.  While I'm sure I'll have quiet NYE in the future that I'll enjoy at home, hanging out with my San Diego friends is so much fun, especially on big nights/festive occasions!  And we didn't overshoot the bill too badly.  We definitely didn't drink a lot since we started early so a nearly full bottle of Belvedere went home with me in my bag.  Scandalous!
Hotel Solomar

Hotel Solomar

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

2012 Wrap-Up!

1. What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before?
Went to Vegas!  Went to JazzFest.  Went on a humanitarian medicine mission (USNS Mercy). Won a chili cook-off!  Joined a “book club.”  Ran a hash.  Had my O-4 wetting down.  Was a bridesmaid in a brother’s wedding!  Did a Whole30.

2.  Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I had a pretty good year.  I didn’t do super well on resolutions that I made (studying, studying Spanish, weight loss) but I’m in a pretty happy place right now so it wasn’t a wash.  As for this upcoming year, I have a lot of goals but most of them are due to fixed external circumstances- graduating from residency, moving, boards.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
No, but my good friend from college is pregnant!

4. Did anyone close to you die?

5. What countries did you visit?
Philippines and Indonesia thanks to the USNS Mercy.  Otherwise, it was a very domestic travel kind of year- New Orleans for JazzFest, Nashville on a road trip, Pensacola for Joe’s wedding, Pittsburgh to see Karen, DC for the AAO-HNS meeting.  

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?
Hmmm, I don’t feel that 2011 lacked anything.  There were certainly a few turns of events that I wasn’t anticipating (see #7) but overall, I’m just excited for the growth and happiness I expect 2013 to bring.

7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
September 4th when I found out that Mechen was not the person I thought he was.  A less nice way to put this is that it was the date I found out he was a cheating bastard.

8 December: Saturday December Nights in Balboa Park.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
This is hard.  I think the best was the USNS Mercy, specifically the thyroglossal duct cyst case I arranged in the Philippines.  And to be honest, not to focus too much on failed relationships, standing up for myself and kicking Mechen to the curb was a pretty big deal. 

9. What was your biggest failure?
Eh, why dwell.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

11. What was the best thing you bought?
I really dig my new Frye boots.  And plane tickets to my brother’s wedding!

12. Where did most of your money go?
    Rent, travel, superfluous silliness.

    13. What did you get really excited about?
    USNS Mercy, starting my chief year!!!

    14. What song will always remind you of 2011?
    Goyte, “Somebody that I Used to Know;” Taylor Swift, “We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together;” The Avett Brothers, “Live and Die;” 

    15. Compared to this time last year, are you:
    – happier or sadder? Happier
    – thinner or fatter? Same/thinner
    – richer or poorer? Richer (continuing to save)

    16. What's one thing you wish you had done more of?

    17. What do you wish you’d done less of?
    Read silly websites- so far this year, no or!
    18. How did you spend Christmas?
    On call but had Christmas lunch at the Boswells and Christmas dinner with Matt & Bryon and Julian & Chase.

    19. What was your favorite TV program?
    Modern Family

    20. What were your favorite books of the year?
    The End of Your Life Bookclub, Cutting for Stone...I also love

    21. What was your favorite music from this year?
    Monsters & Men, The Killers, GROUPLOVE, Avett Brothers

    22. What were your favorite films of the year?
    Hunger Games (I know!), Step Up Revolution (the dance scenes were incredible).  Clearly, I don’t prioritize movie watching in my life.

    23. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
    32.  I went out to Davanti Enoteca the day of and did fun things the weekend before- bike riding, hanging out with friends.

    24. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
    There were definitely some unexpected ups and downs this year but nothing I can imagine not going through since I’m in a really good spot right now.

    25. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2013?
    Classic (read: expensive) pieces mixed with some mixed (but mostly good) finds on the Anthro sales rack.  

    26. What kept you sane?

    27. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2011.
    Life refuses to conform to plans.  A positive outlook and dealing with challenges gracefully can make all the difference.  Finding love can be a wonderful, serendipitous thing.  I am really, REALLY lucky to have all that I have and to have been born to a wonderful American family.