Saturday, September 01, 2012

Chirp, chirp...

Hello there. You may have noticed there's been no new posts here for quite a while. That's because I moved my blog to WordPress a while back.

I don't blog often these days, but when I do, you can find it at http://alesplin.wordpress.com.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Time Flies When You're Having Fun...

2002
2003
2004
2005
2006
2007
2008
2009
2010

Today Nicole and I have been married for 7 years (the 2002 picture is when we were first dating). Sometimes it seems like only yesterday, and sometimes I have a hard time remembering what life was actually like before Nicole. Either way, the constant thing is that it's been the best 7 years of my life. I'm sure most people who knew us separately before we met were scratching their heads and wondering how two people so apparently different could date, let alone get married. But the end result is something that perhaps neither of us imagined. Life with Nicole has opened my eyes to a lot of world previously beyond my horizon. She's been a constant source of stability (something which I didn't have a lot of pre-Nicole) and comfort. She encourages (forces?) me to really think about things I never gave a lot of thought to, and not to just think something because somebody (anybody) else does. I could go on and on about why I love her, but perhaps most of all I love her because she loves me, not just for who I am, but for who I have the potential to be.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Well, that was new and exciting...

Today, at about 6:40, I experienced something completely new. I was riding my bike on State road 77 (4000 S) west toward where the road curves south to go into Lake Shore and Benjamin. (the A is pretty close to where I was)


Before I get into the new experience of the day, let me give a little background. This is a road cycling haven. Long, flat, straight roads with little traffic. Last Saturday I rode out this road to West Mountain and had an incredible day. The few cars overtaking me were moving all the way to the other side of the road to give me plenty of room. Farmers waved hello from their tractors. I saw several other cyclists, real roadies who greeted me with a cheerful, one-hand-off-the-handlebar wave, and I felt like I had finally found the ladder to the secret clubhouse. It's a perfect place to start increasing the mileage on my endurance rides.

Today, it was not so perfect. A faded red, mid-to-late 80's Ford F-series with a silver/chrome strip down the side (I think that was the Lariat trim model) drove by me, heading east. I saw a dark object flying toward me and ducked my head instinctively. After (a non-trivial) impact, I briefly wondered how that big of a rock had gotten up on the road and thrown up by the truck. Then I saw the object, which had bounced off my head and was still in the air headed toward the cat-tails growing out of the ditch on the other side of the road, silhouetted against the sky. It was a largish (probably 32 oz.) bottle of water. I immediately stopped, but the truck was too far away to make out the license plate. Then I thought to take off my helmet and have a look.

To be clear, I'm okay. I've had a bit of a headache this evening, but I'm fine. But I was extremely lucky. If it had hit me anywhere other than the head (where my helmet earned its $100 by bouncing it clean off) or hit my bike, I would have been doing a 20 mph tumble on rough asphalt. Not to mention the injury the bottle would have done to me if it hit anywhere other than my helmet.

So now I have to buy a new helmet. And, for Nicole's peace of mind, I have to find someplace else to stretch out the miles when I go for a ride. (Provo Canyon is a great place to ride, but that's a pretty steep hill to go riding up for 20 miles, let alone the downhill trip on a fixed-gear...)

I know that nobody reading this blog is likely to be the kind of person who'd throw something out a truck going 45 mph at a cyclist. But everyone can help. You can help people start seeing cyclists. You can watch for instances of illegal and belligerent behavior toward cyclists and report them. Since it seems clear that some people will not use the brains God gave them, the rest of us have to pick up the slack, and it really needs to be sooner than later.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Happy New Year!

Disclaimer: I'm in no condition to go anywhere to take pictures of fireworks, so I'm using some from the 4th of July last summer.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

The daytime of the night.

I've spent a lot of time outdoors in the nighttime. I've driven a lot of miles in the middle of the night with the moon so bright that sometimes I've just turned off my headlights (when there weren't other cars around) and driven by moonlight. I've always enjoyed hiking by moonlight, and I've been quite surprised by how well you can see, and how much you can see, by the light of the moon and stars. So a couple months ago when I was looking at the dates for our trip to Hawaii I was quite pleased to see that the full moon would occur during our trip. So I spent a few nights wandering around the resort and the beach with my camera and tripod. Here's some of the cool stuff you can see in the middle of the night at the Marriott's Maui Ocean Club.


the view of the pool from our balcony

palm trees leaning out over the beach, lit by tiki torches

a little farther away from the torches

hiding the moon to see the stars

amazing how much color you can see in the dark if you look long enough

the beach melting into the ocean

looking down the beach toward Lahaina

tiki torches + long exposure time = pretty cool

pretty cool how far stars move in 20 seconds

a little time lapse of the moon rising

video

Friday, August 28, 2009

Hawaii Highlights

I like Hawaii. A lot. Although I don't surf or boogeyboard, and I'm not a super-great swimmer, I _love_ the ocean. And it just so happens that Hawaii is smack dab in the middle of a great big, blue ocean. Very blue. I have always loved spending time outdoors. Having grown up partly in the South while my dad was in the Army, and partly in the desert and the mountains in and around Orderville, I have a little bit of a schizophrenic ecological preference. I like swamps. I like forests. I like deserts. I like mountains. And awesome-ly, Hawaii has all of that. And jungles, which I didn't grow up with, but which are quite cool nonetheless. I remember not quite knowing what to expect the first time we went, in 2003. Driving across the desert side of the island to the western side of Maui, you see a lot of brown grass, scrubby bushes and lava rocks. Sound familiar? Yup. Looks just like home. Only with an ocean. So now that we've established that I like Maui, here are some highlights:

sunset over the ocean. from my seat at dinner. yup. love that Lahaina Fish Company.

the daytime of the night. at the resort.

for some reason I like taking pictures at night.

not quite sunset from the boat.

closer to sunset. still on the boat.

apparently I like sunset pictures.

bridge on the road to Hana.

Wai'anapanapa. near Hana.

waterfall by a bridge on the road to Hana.

sunset at the resort.

the edge of a very hard seat. on a canoe.

patterns in the sand. Lahaina.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Me and the people.

Nicole reminded me after my last post that there were no pictures of me (or us, or me and the kids) in it. Which is not surprising, since all of those pictures came from my camera. So here's some pictures of with me in them from our trip to Newport Beach. And the ocean. And Disneyland. :) (These were all taken by Natalie or Nicole)

Me

Me and Nicole

Me and Ethan

Me and Chelsea

Me and Jayden

Gang pictures