Tuesday, April 29, 2008


So far Summer 2008 has been every bit as good as we have planned it to be. Plan is the key word. Without planning I feel like this summer will zip by, so I want to have meaningful, memorable activities every single day this summer.

It started out on a good foot. Wednesday, April 23, was the last day of finals. It was a pretty exhausting day. I woke up pretty early to study for my physics exam. That was a pretty nasty experience. In addition to that I had to finish my papers for Anthropology, and that was equally painful. And as if the day couldn’t get more unfortunate, my boss called me and harangued me for tipping off those dumb indie kids and telling them not to go to the silent dance party scheduled for the second floor of the library on Tuesday. I kinda sabotaged the whole stakeout and would’ve been in big trouble if the ringleader hadn’t come in to test the waters. My boss had arrested him and charged him and so forgave me my indiscretion. Still, however, it was a little stressful to sit down in the interrogation chair and hear from a police sergeant/ SWAT sniper how I had “obstructed justice.”

The light at the end of the tunnel finally came and finals were over. I went home and collapsed on the couch and waited for Ashton to get off work. She came over in the evening and we went out to Carraba’s to celebrate the end of a grueling semester. We were also celebrating six months since we’d met, which I felt was a pretty significant landmark. After a decent meal we went over to Lauren and Jesse’s to share some Crème Broule, and then we went for a walk. Up until this time I had played the whole evening cool, but I realized that now was the time to take care of business, and I didn’t have a plan. The ring was in my pocket but I didn’t want to put it on her finger just anywhere. We walked from my apartment seven blocks to Center Street and I suggested we walk to the historical landmark tree by the courthouse, the first destination she ever took me on our frequent bike rides. She protested because of the chilly weather, but I insisted that it wasn’t that far. Eight blocks later we arrived at the tree and sat down on a picnic table underneath it. I rambled some ill-prepared speech about how the day was significant because it marked our six months, as well as concluded a school year of college. On the last day of finals my freshman year, I received and opened my mission call to Ukraine, thus changing the course of my life. I figured that this last day of finals would be an equally appropriate day to change the course of my life, and while we sat there and chatted I placed the ring on her finger, without her immediately noticing. I didn’t really want to get down on one knee and I figured she’d be equally surprised to look down and see a shiny rock on her finger. She was. She paused, a little shocked, and started repeating, “Oh my gosh.” The deed was done.

The next day I woke up at a healthy hour, enjoying my first opportunity to sleep in. Greg and I decided to hike Squaw Peak. Ashton had to work so we took off without her and started the strenuous climb. About a half hour into the hike we saw a bighorn ram and two younger sheep. They were perched on the rocky cliffs like they had Velcro on their feet, and we were able to snap some good photos of them. We continued on and hit the fork where the trail branches off to the left. Almost immediately the hike turned steep and soon we were trudging through snow. This continued till the very top, which felt like were ascending a glacier. We were both exhausted when we reached the summit, and a little perturbed by the heavy snow that had begun to fall. We sat at the top and marveled at the view, crouched between boulders to avoid the icy wind. The whole venture was amazing but not very good for my cold, which quickly turned into bronchitis.

The next day, Friday April 25, I attended a graduating brunch for Ashton’s sister Morgan. Afterward Ashton and I went to Target to register for all our dream housing appliances. I made sure to get a fondue pot and was overwhelmed with the complexity of bedding. I couldn’t comprehend why we needed a duvet, 2 bedspreads and a down comforter. After that we made a trip up to South Jordan for Elder Salter’s wedding reception. That card. Following the reception we met up with Allie and went to Step Up 2, which was arguably the worst movie I’ve been to with Ashton to date. Nauseating. But only a dollar.

On Saturday I drove up to Maryn’s play, the Whiz. There was not a single black kid in the cast, so I felt that something was missing. The cast was seventh grade and lower, so we aren’t talking about professional singers, but they had a good time. I wish they’d used Maryn more, it would’ve been a lot more gratifying. There were a couple scenes where I started wishing I was back at Step Up 2. That night we went back to Provo and attended Comedy Sportz, and improv club on center. It was pretty funny and a very creative approach to improv. It made me want to get on the stage.

On Sunday I went to see Ashton speak and had dinner at her house. After that we took Galya for a walk. We walked all the way to the botany pond from my apartment, and she followed us the entire way. It was pretty amusing. We did a couple of laps around the pond with her and people were just baffled. All the little kids wanted to come pet the baby duck and we obliged until Galya started getting traumatized.

Yesterday was Monday, April 28. Greg and I went for a swim at the University Villa and went to the D.I. to sort through books. I picked up a few gems. After that we met Mary Walter and Steve for some lunch at Los Hermanos. It’ll be weird with Steve gone, but he’ll have a much funner time in Jerusalem. Plus I get my own room now. After all that we went to Williams Sonoma and registered for some ridiculously expensive cookware. There we saw the gayest man in Provo, an older gentleman in a woman’s blouse with woman’s slippers, a purse, jewelry and some modest makeup.

Today Ashton and I drove up the canyon and parked at the Stewart Falls trailhead. It was hard to find the beginning of the trail because everything was still buried in snow, but luckily someone had marked the trial with orange tags. We made the hike in a little over an hour. We didn’t see any wildlife but we did have a good time maneuvering the snow. One of the coolest parts was hiking through a graveyard of trees where an avalanche had torn through. What was once a dense forest now looked like a field of beaver food. The best part was approaching the waterfall; I jumped from a rocky ledge onto a steep sheet of snow, thinking I could sink in and walk across. I hit the icy surface with a bounce and slid several meters before I was able to dig in. That was a good time. It was a very beautiful waterfall and well worth the hike. It’ll be nicer to go back in a month when the snow has melted.