Today I am in Seattle for possibly the final face to face meeting of the Pacific West Region Science Strategy Working Group. I think the rest of the group is pretty tired of these meetings and possibly of the whole project in general, but I have to admit that I love these meetings. It isn't every day that I get to hang out with the luminaries of science in the National Park Service and argue over what the future of science in the Pacific West Region of the NPS should look like. I'm really grateful to Ray (our former division chief and now PWR regional chief of natural resources) and Angie (Great Basin and CA CESU coordinator and my supervisor for my CESU detail) for getting me involved in this project. It has been so fun. Don't tell anyone that I said that though, it is definitely not cool to think that these meetings are fun...
It helps that the meetings are always in either Oakland or Seattle. When they are in Oakland, we drive up with the whole family and Mitch and the girls go to Fairytale Land or the California Academy of Sciences. We eat yummy indian and thai food at good restaurants that are in downtown Oakland (this is when I'm not at the meeting by myself with Ray while downtown Oakland riots in response to a BART shooting...). When the meetings are in Seattle I get to stay in swanky hotels in downtown Seattle and drink lots of coffee.
This trip I was finally able to meet up with my brother and one of my closest friend's from college, John, and John's new wife Nina. Usually I'm too busy working and too last minute to actually meet up with anyone. But this trip I got here early enough that we all went out to dinner. It was great to see all of three of them.
I get to go home late tomorrow night so that I can have my full three day weekend with the family. There is even a rumor that Seth and Mitch might actually get some of the drywall done in the little house.