Saturday, April 3, 2010

Out of sync, to start with...

(I dreamed I was elected President of the United States--really!--and that was okay, but I had to make an acceptance speech and wanted to be out in the audience for a test run, to see how it felt. And Bill and Hillary were there, but not Obama, and the feeling I got was somehow that the rich middle class people were all badly behaved and rowdy, but that the more modest people in the rows way in back were more polite and attentive. I think the speech went okay. Then it all turned somehow into this huge funeral and I had to learn how to push the stand with wheels for the casket. I don't know who had died...)

Anyway, yesterday started out as one of those days when nothing is quite in sync. Ten people is a large number when you're trying to organize something, and somehow I got the impression that we were all agreed it would be a good idea to go out on a whale-watching boat today (Saturday, as I write) and booked tickets on the telephone at vast expense, only to discover when we were all assembled for lunch at the Zinc Cafe that no-one was terribly enthusiastic, except, of course, the kids. But the tickets don't allow for cancellation, so we're stuck with them. And this morning looks bleak and rainy--perhaps that storm they've been talking about for days has finally arrived.

So it turned out to be a kind of aimless day, though we did all have a good time, after lunch, at the library bookstore, where we picked up some good bargains for very little money. With the rest of the gang headed for the beach, I decided on an afternoon of refuge at the cottage, and enjoyed a couple of hours of peace and quiet. Later afternoon, Elizabeth was booked on a train back to Iowa, so Matthew and Jason drove her up through a jam-packed canyon to the Irvine train station (I'm getting to know the way there blindfold) and saw her on to the train. It was a delight to spend some time with her again, and to share the family experience with the grandchildren.

A fine barbeque at the cottage in the evening. Sarah's friend Ed arrived from Los Angeles to join the party, and Jason grilled the vegetables in the back yard. I did the burgers and hot dogs, whilst Ellie prepared a salad in the kitchen. Another dinner of great noise and merriment. One thing I note about our family: we share a kind of word gene, and we all feel comfortable with the interplay of language. Even the children have this gift, and join readily in the fun. When we're all seated around the table, the words fly constantly back and forth, accompanied by gales of laughter. Such a pleasure. And after dinner Sarah and Ed engaged the kids in a round or two of "The Exquisite Corpse" before they all trooped off back to the hotel...

We'll see how the whale-watching expedition turns out later in the day!

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