Riverby Books

This weekend, my father, uncle and I flew over to Fredericksburg, Virginia, for the VA States Frisbee Tournament.  We arrived Thursday morning in DC, and drove the long way down, through the countryside, past farms and creeks and rolling hills. We stopped at a diner along the way, and had scrambled eggs, home fries and english muffins, all with orange juice and coffee. We spent the day greeting old friends we hadn’t seen since last year’s Frisbee Tournament, and playing the disc golf course at Pratt Park, where the tournament would be held the next day. By the time darkness had fallen, we all were exhausted from running about with our frisbees. But we still had one more adventure planned for that day. We’d been invited by our good friends Sam and Jay to the Riverby Books used bookstore, which was owned by another friend named Paul, who would be playing in the tournament the following morning. Paul had set up an 18 hole mini frisbee golf course throughout his store, and we, the Californian team made up of Tom, Jeff, and myself, were playing against the local team, made up of Sam and Jay.

As we read over the obscure rules, certain things popped out to me, like how if you were to knock over a book on your throw, you gained a stroke, or how your hand had to be touching the place where your disc had landed, if it had landed on a bookshelf. We stepped up to Hole 1 and all took a shot at the target, which was a shelf up and around some obstacles, and had mixed results. Hole 2 had us throwing through a hole in one bookshelf, and 3 brought us down to the below ground level of the store onto a white couch. 7 had us back up to ground level, but throwing up into bags hanging from a balcony of the second story. Hole 9 took us from said balcony, and across the open space unto a cushioned seat. 10 was into a hanging weigh scale for fruit, and 11 was back downstairs. On 15, we were required to land in a velvet lined accordion case, and 16 was out the door into the rain. The final hole, 18, was around and down a staircase and into a cooler full of beer. In the end, it was the Californian team that won, but we all had a blast and had, for a little while at least, forgotten about the long, grueling, lost weekend ahead.


Adventures in Bunnyland

Over this last weekend, my friend Curran and I decided to make Italian food over at his house. I started running over, but quickly was out of breath and walking. On my walk, as I stopped to admire the flowers, something unusual appeared in the corner of my eye. A small black form, barely moving, but still twitching just enough to notice. I slowly turned about and saw a small black house rabbit sitting in someone’s driveway. There was no one in sight, and the bunny didn’t seem to have any problems, it was just sitting there, staring up at me.

I sat down on the edge of the road, right near the bunny, and decided the wisest solution was to Facetime Curran, and see if he knew anything about this rabbit. I tried to mute my phone, as I thought the ringing would disturb my little friend on the road. When Curran picked up, I didn’t say a word and only turned the screen to face the rabbit. Shocked and excited noises came out of the speaker and I quickly turned it back to face me. A quick conversation yielded a hastily put together plan for me to catch it. While still trying to let Curran see through the phone, I began a slow chase, where I would creep up and reach out, but the rabbit would hop a few feet away. As this went on, Curran thought it best for him to run down and help. As I waited, the rabbit started running off, and I tried to follow, but it ran into someone’s yard. I frantically tried to keep an eye out for it, but it soon disappeared.

When Curran came careening down the hill, I filled him in on the situation and we both ventured into the yard, quickly locating the rabbit and trying to corner it. We would have gotten it if it weren’t for the speed and dexterity of this chubby little animal. We found a rabbit hutch in the yard with three or four other rabbits and thought this might be the home of our escaped friend. After chasing it all over the yard, under trees and bushes, through plants, flowers, and other miscellaneous objects, we got it pinned between us and the wall of the yard, andCurran managed to get his hands on it. Back in the hutch it went, and we walked up the hill, so we could make some delicious italian.


Just last week, I took a trip up to the small, windswept town of Guadalupe, about an hour north of Santa Barbara. In the middle of the main street, tucked between an old antique store and a taqueria, stands a small, barren plot of dust. In the corner of this land is a small, covered arch, wherein a statue of the Virgin of Guadalupe stands. It is surrounded by withering flowers and tall candles with her picture on them, as well as several other saints. To the right is a small marble bench for weary travelers, and to the left on the wall it reads “And you, you who are my messenger, In you I place my absolute trust”. This is repeated in Spanish and Nahuatl. These are the words spoken by the Virgin Mary to Juan Diego at the hill of Tepeyac, which one day would become part of Mexico City. Below her statue is a kneeling stand, so that passers might have a place to pray. The shrine is protected by white-washed walls and marble, building up to a yellow rose that caps the beautiful sanctum. On the floor is marble too, with golden leaves etched in that contrast the bland grey of the sidewalk. The ceiling is a faint blue, resembling the cloudy sky. Many people often stop to pray or to pay respect. I arrived on a windy day, and when I stepped into the confines of the sanctuary, the howling of the wind was quieted and the rushing cold had retreated. Soon I had to leave though, and stepped back out, into the screaming gale. We made our way cautiously across the road, nearly falling once or twice. We made it to the car and got safely home, and there I looked upon our own candles, with the Virgin of Guadalupe’s face staring down. There, there was our own shrine, our own sanctuary.

Mission: Impoppyable

The search for golden poppies began at the foot of Grass Mountain, just outside of the small town of Los Olivos, California. My family and I set out on foot, crossing creeks and passing beautiful wildflowers. While we did stop to admire and smell the inviting Lupins, we had but one thought on our minds: Poppies. We could see the orange swaths across the mountainside above us, and that only drove us onward ever furthe r and faster. As time wound on, the trail began to become steep and slippery. Loose stones and dust only rose the stakes as one after the other, we all took a tumble. But the Cole family pressed on, unhindered by scraped knees or eyes temporarily blinded by dust. We managed to break through the cool shade of the trees, and were met with eternal fields of grass and shrubbery, broken only by the occasional yucca, ready to spear unsuspecting hikers. Heat beat down upon our backs and necks. We were forced to stop several times, and pass about a water bottle to quench our thirst. But on we kept, and soon, the peak was within our grasp. It took only a few minutes to ascend the last few yards of path, find a patch of poppies to lay our blanket next to, and enjoy the view. I managed to snap a few pictures of the poppies, and nearly fell trying to find my footing on the near vertical slope. As quickly as we arrived, we soon left, packing up our things into my backpack and leaving the Poppies for another day. On the descent, I tried to slide down the mountain, through the fields of grass, to little avail. I soon decided that walking and attempting to slide was not quite at a speed on par with my energy, and took off running down the mountainside, nearly falling at every turn or twist in the trail. With the trailhead in view, we hiked on, all the way to the car, and drove home, excited for the next time.