U2 Songs of Experience Concert in San Jose (x2)

Somehow I ended up with tickets to both shows at San Jose. I originally got seats for Grace after our last GA experience. When they announced a second show, I opted for Red Zone GA, thinking I could decide which one later. It turned out that neither pair was transferrable/sellable so I got to experience both.

The first night was quite civilized as it included dinner in the BMW Lounge. Plus we didn’t have to get there super early to stress about a spot. Just like Songs of Innocence, there was no perfect place to see the entire concert, but being right in the middle I guess was the best compromise. We were pretty far away from the action, except when The Edge came close to us for Pride.

I thought the show was great. Although they didn’t play one song from Joshua Tree, we got all that last year. This show was still like a greatest hits.

On the second night, I invited my go-to concert buddy, Erich. Even though we didn’t get there super early, we were still there in time for 2nd row in the Red Zone. I could have given up our spot to move to the b-stage, but decided it wasn’t worth it as I already saw the show and knew the end of the show would be where we were standing. It was basically an Adam Clayton photo shoot because we were closest to him for most of the show.

The setlist was the same for both nights with the exception of Red Flag Day, which was their live debut on Tuesday.

  1. Love Is All We Have Left
  2. The Blackout
  3. Lights of Home (String Version)
  4. Beautiful Day
  5. I Will Follow (with “Mother” snippet)
  6. Gloria (with Them’s “Gloria” snippet)
  7. Red Flag Day (live debut)
  8. The Ocean
  9. Iris (Hold Me Close)
  10. Cedarwood Road
  11. Sunday Bloody Sunday (acoustic; shortened; car bomb… more )
  12. Raised by Wolves (with “Psalm 23” snippet)
  13. Until the End of the World (with Allen Ginsberg’s “America” snippet)
    Intermission
    Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss Me, Kill Me (Gavin Friday version)
    “E” Stage
  14. Elevation (Influx remix intro)
  15. Vertigo (with “The Jean Genie” snippet)
  16. Desire (Hollywood remix)
  17. Acrobat (with “Sympathy for the Devil” snippet)
  18. You’re the Best Thing About Me (acoustic; with “Landlady” snippet)
  19. Staring at the Sun (acoustic)
  20. Pride (In the Name of Love) (with “This Is Not America” snippet)
  21. Get Out of Your Own Way
  22. American Soul
  23. City of Blinding Lights
    Women of the World (Jim O’Rourke song)
    Encore:
  24. One
  25. Love Is Bigger Than Anything in Its Way
  26. 13 (There Is a Light)
    The Miracle (of Joey Ramone) (ambient mix)

Carey 5th Grade Outdoor Ed Departure

On April 23rd, I saw Olivia off to outdoor ed with the rest of her 5th grade classmates. Also heading out were several brave and wonderful parents as well as the intrepid Mrs. Zirelli!

This really was starting to feel like the beginning of the end of 5th grade and Olivia’s time at The Carey School. I hope she’s loving every minute of it.

Baby Emery’s Dol

We celebrated Emery’s dol with Esther and Jon’s family and friends. I was rooting for her to choose the baseball (golf ball in my eyes), but I think she chose the piggy bank.

Some photos by Lucas.

Spring Break in Southern California

After traveling a bit this winter to ski, we decided to stay local for Spring Break. We didn’t have any firm plans and after a great trip to Tahoe a few weeks ago, skiing was put on the table. However, the weather was a bit unpredictable, so we stayed with the original plan, which was to go to Southern California.

What didn’t go as planned was our departure. Grace arranged to have lunch with her parents, which would have meant about a 7am departure. Given that we don’t pack until the day of, our actual departure was about 11:30am. We only made it about 1 mile before our first stop for lunch. After that, we drove straight with no stops to meet Grace’s parents for dinner instead in Koreatown at Chosun Galbee (always). We continued another hour to Laguna Niguel.

Part of our trip was coordinated with Julie and Albert, who were originally going to stay at Monarch Beach. After they changed plans, we just decided to stay at Grace’s parents’ house, which was empty. The next best thing to staying at Pelican Hill is having your friends stay there and crash their party – for two straight days.

On Monday after swimming over there, we celebrated our 13th wedding anniversary at Monarch Beach Resort, which was formerly the St. Regis when we got married there. The decor is a little more modern and the restaurants are new. Bourbon Steak replaced the previous Michael Mina restaurant. I had informed them of our celebration and they took very good care of us for the evening. We’ve been to the resort a few times over the years, but hopefully this is a visit the kids will remember.

On Tuesday, the Lees had a setup at Crystal Cove beach and invited us over. The kids played for a while with the Lees and their cousins before retreating to the full-servicesness of the pool at the resort. Thanks to Julie and Albert for hosting us during our OC visit.

Tuesday evening we called an audible with Beth and Ryan, who live very close to Grace’s parents’ house in Laguna Niguel. We met up at 230 Forest in downtown Laguna Beach. It was great to catch up with them and see Sloane and Alex, who have grown so much since our last visit.

Wednesday we migrated back to LA with a stop in Manhattan Beach, where we stuck to the routine of Rock N’ Fish, beach and the creamery. The only thing we forgot were the beach chairs, but we bought a much needed umbrella from the same guy who was selling fruit every other time we saw him. Grace wanted to check out Venice Beach on the way up, but by the time we got there it was so windy that we didn’t want to get out of the car.

We had dinner at Century City, which was our new new home for the next couple days. We went to Rock Sugar for dinner on Wednesday and Toscanova for lunch on Thursday. Thursday afternoon, we went to Ann and Jeremy’s who were joining us for dinner with Grace’s family and Dave to celebrate her mom’s and Dave’s birthdays at Del Frisco’s in Santa Monica.

After completing some IT projects at the Westwood house, we met up with Dave and Grace’s parents back at Republique on La Brea, where we ate last year. There was no Fonzie sighting this year, but the food was just as good. Following lunch, we hit the road for home. We did have to make one quick stop for gas, but it was otherwise a non-stop trip to home. The only thing that saved me was trying out adaptive cruise control for the first time. I admit that I didn’t trust it at first to slow down, but after some testing, I realized it was life-changing. I can live with semi-autonomous cars for now.

Birthday Dinner with the Lees

Julie and Al took our family out for our birthdays. In addition to dinner at Il Fornaio, I’m looking forward to redeeming my round of golf with Al as well as using the illegal chipper club they gave me because of my yips. I’m going low.

Thanks to great friends for being so thoughtful and celebrating with us.

Annual Tahoe Trip with the Moons

This past weekend we made our first trip to Tahoe for the season thanks to a late winter snow storm. We coordinated with the Moons and looked into renting a house or condo, but with Thando joining the family, we needed something dog friendly. Luckily the hotel was happy to have him.

We stopped at Il Fornaio in Roseville on Friday night and didn’t get into the hotel until about 10:30pm. Saturday morning we got a relatively early start (given we were on the mountain already). It snowed all day and most of the night, dumping about 9 inches on top of a recent storm that brought over five feet of much needed snow.

Their friends Elisa and Don were also at the resort, so we had dinner together on Saturday night. Each of us got a turn with the baby, Olivia being the most successful. On Sunday, we got out early again and skied hard for a few hours on the most and best snow of the season. The powder in the glades was the best. Lucas and Olivia made so much progress this season, which was proven on the same mogul run we did a couple seasons ago. Grace is also doing great on her form.

We thought this might be our last trip of the season, but now skiing is on the table for spring break. Who knows what will happen with the snow and weather between now and then. In any case, it was a great trip with the Moons  with some of the most memorable runs of the year.