A Dozen Roses.

Rosemead. It's rare that Rosemead is known for anything. My church sits right at the edge of the city... there are some local eateries, nail salons, and a bunch of auto mechanic shops. From what I can tell, the city is predominately Latino and Southeast Asian... a bunch of immigrant families... as one can see …

Planting a Vine.

It started with fish tacos. A few months ago I was having lunch with one of our church's college students over some delicious fish tacos from Fogata Mexicana in Rosemead (arguably the best fish tacos in the area). The student's name is Arturo Flores, but a bunch of the youth staff and I affectionately call …

Sakurajima in the news

I happened to fall upon an article about active volcanoes on Yahoo news. They highlighted another volcano near Kagoshima, but you can also see Sakurajima in the picture! It's the smaller smoking mountain in the middle of the bay. Sigh... Kagoshima is beautiful. I don't know why, but I equate smoking volcanoes with beautiful instead …

Hiking Hell

Every year I promise myself that I won't go on another backpacking trip. I always break my promise. Last year, my friend Steve got me on video saying I would never do this again... as we walked out of Sequoia National Park. This year was no different. The hiking trip was murder. The first day, …

Everything hurts.

I can barely move. My muscles are in pain. My ankle is messed up. My feet are full of blisters. Even my fingers hurt for some reason. We got back from King's Canyon at about 2:30am last night (morning)... a day early than scheduled. We hiked out early, but pushed our bodies to their uttermost …

4am Departure

Looks like sleep is nothing but a dream to me. No time for real sleep. Only a nap. At 3:55am (a few hours from now), I will meet up with a bunch of guys that I grew up with both from high school and grade school. The buddy that's picking me up - I've known …

Packing Again.

I'm about to leave again. I will be roughing it again... except this time, I'll be in the backcountry of King's Canyon with some childhood and high school friends of mine. The "potty in Iwate" we had at CRASH Tono Base will be a luxury where I am going. Where I'll be, there will be …

From Blue to Brown

Uncool. Just went from this: To this: me not happy. I suppose I'm mentally blocking out all the destruction and discomfort we experienced in Iwate. But even in the midst of the Tsunami wreckage and recovery, the people of Iwate made the country beautiful still. I like LA, but I miss Japan. I'm back for …