I joined BASK and was able to get in on a trip out of Redwood City. We met at the boat dock with a target of a wreck out in the bay. The ship was a lot more interesting that I had originally thought, and the history was better as well. The USS Thompson was a ship that started as a Navy destroyer, was then sold and became a floating SF restaurant, then purchased back and sunk in the south bay as a bombing practice target.
The people were nice to meet and I enjoyed kayaking with them. I look forward to doing more kayaks with the BASK group.
Tina and I went kayaking out of the Redwood City dock and were trying to go see the Greco Island harbor seal colony. When we got there, none of the seals were there, so we turned around and kayaked back. It was still fun to see the dredger they have at Redwood Point, and I got to see a bat ray, since we were at a very low tide.
A group got together to visit Adam in the end of June and start of July. We now felt fine to fly so we flew with Riley and Rong to Vegas, then got a car and drove to Kanab. Tina and Amit had driven there, and we met up with Tim and Hannah that evening as well.
We went to the dunes the first day and had a great time. We were able to rent a board that was similar to a snowboard to surf the dunes. We each were able to get up and ride the dunes a few times. Tim was probably doing the best of everyone by making it the furthest down the dune and standing up all the way.
I stayed in the next two days as the hikes didn’t interest me and I had a little work to do. I didn’t really regret missing the walk through town or the north rim of the Grand Canyon hikes. I had a nice relaxed time at the house.
Steph organized a group to go to one of the local tourist traps, Moqui Cave. It was better than I expected, but still not great. The Belly of the Dragon cave was aa better spot and very interesting formation.
Keeping with the cave theme Steph found a lava tube that could be traversed over about 100ft. It was a tight squeeze but fun to go through. The other tourists were annoying in that the kids didn’t wait to go through the squeeze, and some of the teens were getting into the gated off section of the cave. The national forest and the national monument near the cave were also very pretty. We were at about 10,000 ft so even the light walks were making us winded.
We played tons of games while there. We played lots of Mars, the card game and board game. We also played Wingspan a few times, as well as one game of Mage Knight that we loss spectacularly. Tina brought her switch and we played Overcooked and Just Dance on that. The Just Dance was especially fun because we were all so bad at it.
On the way back Riley, Rong, Steph, and I went ATVing in the desert outside Vegas. It was interesting, especially when a giant dirt devil went through the path we were taking.
I bought a geometric terrarium and sealed the bottom so that it could hold water. Then I tried to grow some juniper from branches I cut around the neighborhood from junipers that had overgrown the sidewalk. The moss came from the back yard, and I got three different types. I grabbed some dirt from the garden and got a ride along rolly polly. So far it has been a few weeks and things are growing decently well. We will see if it survives long term. It can’t stay in the sun for too long as it acts as a greenhouse and will get steamy.
As things opened back up we went back to food exchanges. We did a few this year, all of them taking place in our back yard. As we got vaxed we got closer together and were more comfortable with masks off. The food was always amazing, and we really enjoyed all the leftovers over the next few weeks. Archer also liked to make an appearance, and he really wanted to come and visit with everyone.
Tina, Amit, and myself drove to Kanab, UT to visit Adam again. I was working that week, and Steph was off diving in Mexico again.
The trip down had one major snag getting into Vegas, with a garbage truck on fire taking the highway down to one lane. This caused about a 2 hour delay of stop and go traffic, which I happened to be the driver for. We had to make an impromptu rest stop, but otherwise the ordeal was just some extra driving time.
Over the week I only joined in one hike, but it was certainly the one I would have enjoyed the most. We went to an amazing slot canyon called Buckskin Gulch. This slot canyon went on for miles and at points was hundreds of feet deep and narrow enough to touch both sides. There were a lot of interesting formations, like chimneys, arches, and big swirling patters along the sides. The start of the hike is close to the start of ‘The Wave’ hike as well, but we didn’t get the passes for that hike despite Adam going every morning to enter the lottery for them.
We also played plenty of games throughout the week, which I was able to join in for. I had been wanting to achieve the full emigration in Feast for Odin, and was able to pull it off in one game.
The drive back was less eventful than the drive there, thankfully.
Debby and Andrew set up a viewing of A Quiet Space 2 in the new Sunnyvale theater. We watched some of the reviews of the first one. I was hoping the second would be more action, in the same way Aliens was an action movie to Alien being a horror movie. There was certainly more action, but it was still mostly horror and suspense. I still enjoyed the movie for the most part. There was a distinct lack of strategy for the characters in dealing with the aliens in this movie. I kept on thinking “Just throw a rock!” when they were being hunted.
After the movie we went to Dish Dash with Jeremy, as Lindsay, Kevin, Andrew, and Debby had to head out.
Steph and I decided to try out some parks we hadn’t been to before around the area, and one of them was Hidden Canyon Park, which has Waterdog Lake in it. The park was pretty big, and had a lot of trails running through it. We got a little side tracked once we got to the lake, and ended up taking the trail around it instead of continuing along the edge of the park. We accidentally found ourselves on the path back to the car that was quickest, despite going through a neighborhood and just went with it. The lake itself was quite nice, if small. The hike itself took a bit longer than expected, but we still had a good time.
Lee set up a group to play the RPG game Traveller. The group is composed of Adam, Tina, Andrew, Tim, and myself. Tim is someone I hadn’t known before, and he is very knowledgable about RPG games. A few weeks ago we rolled our original characters.
I was pretty happy with my character, Kenzie Carson. She is a law officer who is a beast with the blade. Adam rolled a social pariah, who is a decent pilot. Andrew rolled a trader, gambler, rogue, and entertainer, who’s a great shot. Tina rolled a minor noble who was locked away for the crimes of a gang boss she was impersonating, who became streetwise after being locked away. Tim rolled a navy careerist who is a great mechanic and gunner.
We got together the next week to roll alts, which all turned out much better now that we knew what we were doing. I rolled a crazy Vargr (wolf like alien) Doctor, who likes to remove unneeded body parts. The others also had better rolls on their characters.
We had our first gameplay session last weekend and it went pretty well. We all got our missions and were able to discuss with the rest of the group how we were going to proceed. My character is desperately poor, so I wasn’t able to get the best gear to start out, but I should have the skills needed to make up for it.
We left Flammarion station heading two jumps away to Walston. In this session we made the first jump and ended up at the planet that hasn’t even earned a name, just a serial number. The planet was mostly empty, but seemed like a place that would have lots of pirates. We found out about a possible pirate crew member, so left as soon as we could. We had trouble starting our jump to the next system, which is where the campaign paused for the next session.
I’ve also been having fun making materials for the game. I made our backstory timelines:
I also made the Flammarion system map:
Then I got sidetracked into making world maps that could be used with the traveller world system. I got pretty far in making visually pleasing spheres that could unwrap into the traveller hex maps of worlds.