Archive for March, 2009

She’s alive! Roadtrip to the SR20 Convention ’09.

March 30, 2009

Wow I haven’t updated since the beginning of the month! Either I’ve been really busy or things have been abnormally un-interesting lately. You decide. Either way, let’s jump right in-

So my car hasn’t run in 13 months. It’s a very long story and I’m not going to bother going into those details. Either way, a friend of ours came over last weekend (Sammy from Tiger Racing in Norcross, GA) to make a house-call. I’ve completely given up on even touching the damn thing since I’m so frustrated with it, but lucky for me Sammy knows his stuff and was able to determine what the problem was (exhaust cam timing was off by 5 teeth!) and get her running in less than an hour. Started her up and I happy-cried. I drove her around the neighborhood for a few minutes to make sure she wasn’t going to spontaneously combust and then stuck her back in the garage. Drove her to work for a few days to start to rebuild the “trust” and was able to confirm she would not explode.

This weekend was the SR20 National Convention sponsored by the SR20forum, and many, many others. They do a national convention every year, each time at a different location. This year it just so happened to be in Savannah, GA. I had made a hotel reservation for Friday and Saturday night and was planning on spending the whole weekend there and getting to see some of historic Savannah, but the weather had other plans. It started raining here on Friday and the forecast predicted “severe thunderstorms and large hail” in Savannah. The hotel did not have covered parking. I made an executive decision that we would stay in ATL on Friday and wait for the weather to clear up on Saturday.

Since we now had a free night to spare, Erik and I went to Dad’s Garage, a local improv comedy place, to see one of their shows. We wound up meeting a really awesome couple and went out to dinner with them afterwards at the Vortex.

Saturday morning we woke up and guess what? Still raining. A huge storm had settled over Georgia and wasn’t planning on leaving any time soon. Personally I’ve never really been one to let weather stand in the way of my roadtrips, so I said let’s go anyway. Packed our bags, loaded up the car, crossed my fingers and headed off towards Savannah.

The weather was absolutely horrendous – what should have been a 3.5hr trip took almost 5. The roads were flooding and my tires are definitely not made for rain driving. There were quite a few times I had to drop back to 40mph and drive with my hazard lights on just to make sure someone didn’t hit me because visibility was practically non-existant. We arrived at the convention hotel around 5pm and promptly headed to the hotel bar for a well deserved drink and a chat with some fellow SR20-enthusiasts.

All in all, Saturday was sort of a waste because there were tornado warnings left and right, nonstop torrential downpours and all the streets were flooded; didn’t get to go downtown at all. We (the convention crowd) wound up spending the night hanging out in the hotel bar/lobby looking at pictures from the track day at Roebling Road on Friday and playing Wii games. I was still pretty happy, however, since I got to see a lot of my friends who I hadn’t seen in ages and play with/talk cars all night. Good times 🙂

By the time we all woke up on Sunday the rain had (finally!!!) cleared out. There was a DIY carwash place up the rode so I grabbed some cash (which I had won off my friend the night before by betting him I had actually driven my car to the convention. He didn’t believe that it was running since it had been down for so long. Went out to the parking lot to prove him wrong. Sucker.) and gave her a nice bath. This was the first time in 2.5 years she’d gotten washed (the water restriction during the drought here made it almost impossible and I can’t take her through automated washes). I was SO happy to finally get all that brake dust off my wheels… they went from disgustingly-dirty-brown back to their pretty, shiny bronze. Yay!

Drove over to Fort McAllister Historic Park for the traditional car show & picnic. There were a ton of really dope Classics and even a real, RHD GTiR!! It was absolutely lovely out and I had a blast getting to see so many SRs all together. I find it funny how it used to be rare to have a DET or VVL motor and now it’s rare to have a regular DE.

Anyway, after the picnic we drove back to ATL (which, thanks to the good weather, only took 3.5 hours). Thanks to the turbo and staying in vacuum, my car absolutely loves highway cruising: I got 250 miles on a half a tank of gas (~35mpg)! Got back to ATL and went to the Vortex again (a different location this time) for dinner before the rest of the boys went their separate ways.

All in all, I’m bummed the weather sucked but glad I had such a fun weekend and got to see so many friends. I’m also really glad my car didn’t die and made the trip and was a rockstar. Thanks to everyone who made it possible!


Snowboarding didn’t kill me! And was FUN!

March 4, 2009

So a few weeks ago Erik decided that he wanted to go snowboarding since he hadn’t been in 4+ years. My BFF EJ just so happens to live in Ogden, UT which is 20 minutes from Snow Basin. Next thing I know, he’s booked us a flight! (Used his miles so it was free, cool deal.)

We flew out to SLC on Friday evening. EJ and her guy met us at the airport, and it goes without saying there was much squealing and hugging and bouncing up and down. Had dinner at a local sushi joint called Tona. Headed back to EJ’s parent’s place afterwards and went right to bed in preparation for the long weekend ahead of us.

Saturday morning Erik woke me at 6:45am (ugh) so that we could go pick up the rental gear before going to the mountain. Erik, the very smart man that he is, offered to not only pay for my snowboard rental, lift ticket AND lesson, but for EJ’s as well! I think he knew that the less miserable we were, the less miserable he would be. 🙂 Anyway, I was outfitted with a midget board (size: 140 – tiny!) and some boots. We packed up the truck and headed to Snow Basin. Yay!

We actually got there about an hour before our lesson started, so the boys went off to play on the big-kid slopes while we waited for our lesson to begin. Our instructor’s name was Adam and he was absolutely wonderful; he was super encouraging and had a great sense of humor, plus he actually taught us how to not-die in just two hours! We had one other girl in our lesson group, this really dope chick name Dara (whose husband grew up literally in the town over from where I grew up!) who we wound up hanging out with for the rest of the day since we were all newbs. Erik took a few snaps of us during the lesson to document us falling on our butts and failing miserably. Had some lunch at the lodge and then went to play for the rest of the afternoon. Surprisingly enough, we all did really well once we stopped hurting ourselves! By the end of the day I was making it all the way down without falling at all, and picked up a lot of speed.

EJ’s parents cooked us an awesome dinner Saturday night and we decided to stay in and recuperate from the day’s adventures. We watched a movie but I fell asleep halfway through because I was so pooped. Called it a night relatively early and we all headed off to sleepytime.

Sunday we woke up around 9am and went to breakfast at Jeremiah’s, a local place with some pretty good eats. Note to self: a big breakfast right before lots of exercise is not the best idea. We got up to the mountain around noon and got half-day lift tickets. EJ and I hit the slopes immediately and did back-to-back runs until 3:30pm. We rocked it. HARD. I was amazed at how much better we had gotten in just one day. I can carve somewhat decently, control my speed and direction, ride regular or goofy AND I even went over some small bumpy-jumpy things and lived to tell about it! Yay! I have decided that I really enjoy snowboarding, especially since it was super warm out and I didn’t manage to break any bones. Why is it that I only enjoy dangerous sports? Horseback riding, racing cars, target shooting, snowboarding… oof.

Dinner that night was at Rooster’s Brewing Company, a local bar/pub in historic Ogden. This is also the same place that EJ took me last time I was in Utah to have a Polygamy Porter and bought me a t-shirt that says “I tried Polygamy in Utah”, lol. The food was really good, but unfortunately, I was way too exhausted to enjoy it, let alone realize I was eating. I was on autopilot. I had a handful of bites before I managed to (almost) fall asleep in my chair. Came back to EJ’s and went straight to bed at 9pm. Slept 12 hours and damn it felt good.

We left Monday afternoon to fly back to Atlanta, but stopped at one of my favorite west-coast fast food joints for lunch before getting to the airport, Wienerschnitzel! The flight back was easy, watched a movie, tried to figure out when the next time I could go snowboarding would be, the usual… 😉

All in all, I had a great trip. I got to see my best friend and her amazing parents, try a fun new sport that I’m actually pretty decent at, and had a lovely weekend with my boyfriend. I didn’t get hurt (aside from a little soreness in my back, shoulders and tush from the Saturday-morning tumbles) and I met some cool new people. I can’t wait to go again!

Pictures: Facebook album here!

I stopped falling mid-day Saturday and spent all day Sunday rocking out hardcore. Unfortunately, this was taken as I was slowing down from my last run, so you can’t see how awesome I was 😦