April 1999

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April 27, 1999:  Check out this cool picture of Paul and I down in New Orleans!  Shaaa baby!

April 26, 1999:  Well first off, this is a very special day as it is my  brother's birthday!  Happy Birthday Tim!  You old dog, you're 27 years old now... Hehehehe, catching up to your big brother!  Ahhh, we're still just puppies!!

Had a fun week.  Work has been going well.  I'm certainly keeping busy there.  I'm working with a great bunch of people and enjoying the company as a whole.  A very cool place to work.

Met Joey over this past week.  He's a very cool guy of whom I'm looking forward to hanging out with and getting to know.  Hehehe, he keeps me laughing my ass off, as well as making me think I've known him from somewhere (he reminds me of..... me!).  Hehehe, pretty cool :-)

On Friday night, Keith Evans came down from Sacramento and on Sat. we headed down to Capitola to do a little drinking!  Well, first off, we found a very cool Hawaiian shirt company.  Hehehe, we dropped a few coins in there (and I know I'll be dropping a few more as the summer gets closer).  We then found the bar we were looking for Margaritaville!  A very cool place BUT it is not a Jimmy Buffett Margaritaville.  Unfortunate, but now worries!  We made friends w/the bartenders, and soon enough, we had some kick ass drinks flowing for the afternoon :-)  Later on, we got some dinner at a local Mexican joint (mmmmm, garlic prawns....) and then headed back to Atherton.

Keith took off on Sunday morning and I did a bunch of errands for most of the day.  Oh yeah, rented and watched Apt Pupil.  V. good movie... very sick, but very good!  Tonight, I made dinner for Rob and Susan (Salmon w/dill, asparagus w/mushrooms 'n garlic, sourdough bread, basmati rice... YUMMY!)  For desert, a sinfully good chocolate cake from the local bakery, to celebrate Rob's birthday!  Heheh, you're still a puppy Rob!  Just a little wiser, that's all :-)

So, what else.. oh yeah, got a new cell phone w/a CA # (yeah!).  Hehehe, digital Star Tac.  Fun!

Working on the web site (making some modifications).... and basically, just living!

Hope that everyone is doing well.  Don't be afraid to drop a line and say HI!

Penz :-)

April 20, 1999:  Well, had a nice weekend. On Sunday morning, I got tickets for the Dave Mathews Band for the July 11th show here in Concord, CA.  I was psyched!  And what's going to make the show even better is that Matt "Macky" Davis is flying out to see the concert with me!  Most cool :-)

I went out to brunch with a new acquaintance of mine, Frank.  He's the regional district manager of Toys-R-Us in the San Fran area.  We had lunch @ Scott's at Jack London Sq. in Oakland.  It made for a really nice way to spend the afternoon. 

Sunday night, I figured out how to switch from the DSS system to regular TV channels, just in time to catch The Simpson and Family Guy.  Hehehe, I think I'm likin the Family Guy a bit more than The Simpson's.  Too funny.  Of course, at 10:00, the X-Files.  Ahhhh, it's a good thing that some things do not change!

Work went well on both Monday and Tuesday.  Monday night I watched Alley McBeal and laughed my ass of.  Hehehe, the poor cat here must think I'm nuts (but he's just as crazy as he actually sits and watches the TV with me... weird....but he's a cool cat!).

Last night I spoke with Steve "Milkman" Mayou (Mayou!  That's M-A-Y....hehehehe).  He's doing well.  He's still in the Navy and  he's doing well.

And that's about it for now.  Oh yeah, HAPPY 420!!! Peace!

April 17, 1999: 

It has been one hell of a week..... and life is good! 

After arriving here on Monday, I was an emotional and physical wreak. Between leaving my life in Nashua, not sleeping and not really knowing what I was getting myself into, you can't imagine what I felt like (maybe some of ya can :-). But, being Penz, I had continued to surround myself with incredible 
people who were right there for me. Up front, I'd like to personally thank the following: 

John Zahara: My manager, my friend. Without him, this trip could not have been possible. Not only did he provide me with the opportunity to get this job, but he also stuck by me as a friend. If I didn't have him to talk to and vent with on this trip out here, I think I would have absolutely lost my mind. Once again, Z proves himself to be one hell of an incredible human being. 

Rob and Susan: These two are probably the most incredible piece of this new picture. They have taken me in as a member of their family and have treated me as good as one could ever hope to be. Like new parents, they have helped make my life be as comfortable and stable as possible. I am here in a warm 
loving environment where I am going to thrive and continue to smile my ass off. At this time, there are not enough words to express my gratitude, suffice to say, I am very grateful... 

and of course, all of my friends.... In way way or another, you are here with me. Each new experience that I am having, in some part, I am sharing with you. Although you may not be able to be here personally, you are in my heart, soul and mind. Although I miss each of you dearly and wish that I could have you right here, I am comforted by your friendship and love and that I will carry with me always.... 

 But, before I start to get too mushy  (believe me, been there!), let me tell you about my new purchase. Yesterday, I became a new car owner! This is my new baby:

It's a kick ass automobile! The  1999 Honda Civic SI (go here and click on the SI 5 speed manual transmission), 165 HP, CD, pwr sunroof/locks/windows, security system, ... it kicks ass! Hehehe, this is the NEW Jimmy Bird (I'll have to get new plates!). I'm pretty psyched!! 

I also passed my CA drivers license test (it's freakin' hard! good thing I studied!), and I also passed my motorcycle test, so I'm psyched. 

Today was a pretty nice day.  Around 8:00 am, Rob, Susan and I went for a little hike around Stanford University.  We went up to 'the dish', which is a huge radio antenna dish in the middle of this gorgeous piece of country property.  I see myself doing a bit of hiking around this area.  After that, we went out for breakfast and then did a little grocery shopping.  Then Susan and I returned the rental car down at San Jose Airport and then went on a tour of Menlo Park, which is only about 10 minutes away.  Wow, I think I'm gonna have a fun time hanging around there during the summer.  Should be lots of young guys around since Stanford U is right across the street!  Hehehehe, a dog to the end :-) 

Well, I'm off to see if I can find a bike shop that can put my bike back together.  Hehehe, I'm not even going to attempt that.  BTW, this is a HUGE bicycling area.  Ton's of bikes on the road, lot's of road bikes.  Hehehe, I'm gonna be the big ol' bear on my Mt. Bike. Hopefully, by the end of the summer, I'll be in some pretty good shape!

Oh  yeah, over the course of the next few week, I'm hoping to have some new picts. up on my site.  Also, I"ll be updating the look of the entire site. 

Hope your day is going well.

All the best ~Penz

Here is my luggage at Manchester airport on April 12 as I was moving out to CA. 
As you can see, I brought along a friend that was given to me by Paul abou 2 years ago..... 
I made many people smile that day :-)

April 12, 1999:  Well, here I am at 31,000 feet, about one hour away from landing in San Jose.... It's been a good day so far.  Let's start w/last night....

I had an awesome time over at Paul and Jon's place.  Upon my arrival, I had the awesome pleasure of finding out that William "Spidey" Wright had flown up from Cincinnati that day and had planned to have dinner with us.  It was really great to see Bill! We were also joined by Craig, the Buffett virgin (can't remember her name - sorry!), Alex, and Jodi.

The meal itself was 'to die for' :-)  Paul baked homemade bread and as an appetizer, Jon, made brucetta.  Oh my, it was friggin' awesome!  I ate a half a loafs worth (and I'd do it again :-) MMmmm, brochette.  After that, we cracked a couple of bottles of wine and prepared for the main course, chicken scaloppini.  Ahhh, I don't think that this dish could have been prepared any better than it was this night.  It was absolutely delicious, but then again, I can't remember a time when it's been anything but.  After wolfing down a helping that would have filled the bellies of three normal people, I took a little break, and savored the moment.  After dinner, we took a break from eating (just for a moment) to watch the Simpsons and to prepare for the perfect desert:  Alden Merrell Cappuccino Silk Pie with a homemade raspberry liquor sauce...... Oh my, oh my, this was the desert of the gods... and I licked my plate clean... twice!  Hehehehehe, all in all, a perfect dinner.

Craig and I left Paul's place around 10:30 and headed back to my house.  Five minutes later the phone rings and I got the surprise of the year, it was Scott "Birdy" Bartholomew on the phone!  Birdy had no idea I was leaving and called on a whim.  We did some catching up for about a half hour and in a nutshell, he's doing well, just bought a 2 family house in Enfield, CT, is not married, is working with his dad as an electrician, and is enjoying life.  It was great to hear from Scott and I look forward to keeping in better contact with him.  Around 11:00 Tab showed up and hung out for about an hour and then made his departure around midnight.  At that time, Craig and I crashed.

This morning, Craig got up and took off around 6:00 (hehehe, early riser, first time for everything my friend!).  I got up and showered and got ready to be picked up by John Zahara (who is currently sitting next to me).  Around 7:30 I was pleasantly surprised by Jon "Scooby" Burns who stopped by to drop off a v. cool CD he burned for me, containing about 200 MP3s.  A very cool going away present.

Around 8:00, Z picked me up and we headed out to Groton, MA to see his new house.  It's a really great place and I know that he and his family are going to be very happy there. 

At 11:00 we arrived at Manchester Airport where I got to see Sam (Jr.'s girlfriend) who took good care of us (thank you) and had the unexpected pleasure of running into Greg Taccinni!

And now, here I am.... about 50 minutes away from San Jose..... and I guess I'm feeling pretty numb.  I don't think everything has settled in yet, but it soon will. 

Ok, that's all for now mon ami's.  More to come soon.


April 11, 1999: T-minus one day.... On Friday night I had the awesome pleasure of hanging out with Bill DeMaio!  He made the trip up from CT to visit me before my departure.  We went out to dinner at Legal Seafood in Burlington, MA where we had a terrific meal (as if there was any other type of meal that you'd get at this place :-).  After dinner, we spent the rest of the night hanging out together, remembering and reliving some good ol' times from our past.  It was a very cool night.  The next morning, we headed out for coffee and bagels at The Bagel Haven, in Hollis, NH where we ran into Jon "Scooby"  Burns.  After catching up w/Scooby, we headed back to my place where my dad and sister were waiting.  I had a nice visit with them, which ended with Dad and Gini driving off in my car (gave it to Dad).  A few minutes later, Bill headed back to CT. 

Sat. night I had an awesome dinner with Alex, Dustin, Kris and her son Roman.  My god, I can't believe how cool it was just hanging out and playing with this beautiful almost 2 year old child.  His big smiles and gay laughter helped cleanse my soul and bring a smile to my very emotionally drained face.  Heheheh, that an awesome dinner of salmon, green beans w/shallots, red wine, a scrumptious desert, and terrific company was just was the doctor ordered.

Sunday, I had breakfast with Alex and Scooby and then at noon met up with Tucker.  Ahhh, my friend, the smiles you continue to bring to me shall last long after CA drops off into the ocean :-)  Thank you....

Tonight, it's dinner w/Paul and I can't wait.  He's making my favorite dish, chicken scaloppini.... mmmmmmmmm......

Well, I'm still holding the tears back...until later...


April 9, 1999:  And the countdown continues.  T-minus three days and counting.... :-)

April 7, 1999:  Well, I just came back from an awesome trip to New Orleans.  On Thursday, April 1, Paul Barnes and I flew down to New Orleans, LA for a bit of R&R (that translates into a lot of eating and drinking :-)  We arrived around 7:30 in NO. and by 8:30 p.m. we were tramping down Bourbon Street.  Our first stop included 2 dozen raw oysters, a couple of hurricanes and a few other drinks.  Heheh, needless to say, we were feeling little pain at this time.  BUT the night was young, so we kept on going and didn't end until about 2:00 a.m.  Oh boy, we stumbled back to our hotel (Marriott on 555 Canal St., which is .02 miles from Bourbon St.) and tried to pass out.  I say try, because Paul got a wee bit sick and his body decided to boot for the next 12 hours!  To make a long painful story short, he recovered the next day, and we went out for dinner at Bubba Gumps on Decatur St. The food was average but our waitress was exceptional.  She gave us a lot of good tips on some great restaurants to try during out stay.  On this night, we were in bed by 10:00 p.m. 

On Saturday morning, we were up and at 'em by 10:00 and headed out for some coffee and pastries on Decatur St.  Around 11:00 a.m. we meandered into Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville to check the place out (click here to see us out front!).  Well, as fate would have it, we ended up at the bar.  Heheheh, after meeting out v. cool bartender (Eric Miller), we put down 4 nice tasty drinks in about an hour.  Heheheh, well, considering they 'free pour' at the bar, we put on a nice one :-).  We then went to lunch at Johnny Po' Boys for a v. good Po Boy sandwich.  After that, we strolled onto Mother's Restaurant for some bowls of good gumbo and another Po Boy sandwich.  Mmmmm, they make theirs with debris (all the good stuff from the bottom of the pan).... Mmmmm, debris.  Around 5:00 we headed back to Margaritaville for a couple of more drinks, ran into Eric and his girlfriend Jamaica and bought them a round.  We also met Jay Tauzin, the grandson of the people who own the alligator farm featured in that new KIA commercial (Ayyy-yeeee!  Say it honey!).  The rest of the night was spent wandering the French Quarter, having some good drinks, and having a blast of a time.  At 2:00 am. we ended up at Coops Place for some EXCELLENT food!  Paul had shrimp Creole and I had a "taste plate", consisting of a bowl of seafood gumbo, jambalaya, alligator and rabbit sausage over spicy rice, and some shrimp Creole.  I was in heaven!  The food, v. casual atmosphere and company was awesome.  We hit the hay around 3:00 am that night. 

On Sunday, we got up around 11:00 and headed out for some coffee.  When we ended up doing for  Easter brunch, was eating some kick ass seafood gumbo and a huge plate of crawfish (suck the heads and pinch the tails!) at an open air cafe. After that awesome meal, we headed down to the French Quarter Market.  Heheh, we tried some KICK ASS hot sauce which left both Paul and I drooling/sweating, and blurry eyed for about 20 minutes.  Ruh ro Raggy.  ROMBIES!!!!!  Hehehehe, too much....  After that it was back to Margaritaville for more drinks, cheeseburgers, blonde strangers, a women in a green dress, and another encounter with our v.cool bartender Eric, who "hooked us up" with some nibble treats.   Mmmmm, smokey nibble treats....  Part of the rest of the afternoon was spent laughing our asses off in the hotel room.  After that, we had the munchies and headed back to Coops place for another awesome meal including seafood gumbo, jambalaya, lamb ribs, and crawfish beignets.  We ended up the night with a few more stroll up and down Bourbon Street. 

On Monday morning, we got up and headed down to Cafe du Monde for coffee and benefits.  After that it was back to the hotel room, and off to the airport.  10.5 hours later, we arrived back home in NH. 

This had to have been one of the most fun trips I've ever taken.  Paul and I had an awesome time together, and it will certainly be an adventure that I'll not soon forget. 


April 1, 1999:  Well for the next 6 days, I'm unemployed!  So, what am I gonna do?  Well, Paul and I are heading down to New Orleans for 4 days of drinkin' and eatin'.  Mmmmmmm..... gonna be a goooooood time y'all.  We're staying in the French Quarter, but I have a feeling that we'll be livin' on Bourbon Street for most of the trip. 

As I was leaving work yesterday, a co-worker (Ivan Gomez), passed along these words to me.  I think they help sum up part of what I'm feeling right now, as I ready myself for the move: 

"It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power. "
Alan Cohen 

and on that note, I'm off on another adventure :-) 

Carpe' Diem! 


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