2004-09-07 - 10:18 a.m.

Ay dios mio!

There's a tempest going on in the teapot of work. I think I'm just going to ignore it for a while.

Also, I had a latte for breakfast this morning, which I should remember is always a bad idea. It makes my head whirl around for a while and then I feel sort of tired.

But here are some things from the weekend:

I got two new Henning Mantell books and they are great! The White Lioness and The Return of the Dancing Master. Quite good.

We watched My Life as a Dog, which also takes place in Sweden and is a really really good movie. We've had it rented all summer and we finally watched it and it was every bit as good as I remembered. Sad, of course, but also funny. I'd sort of forgotten how sad until we were watching it, and then I was worried that it would be too sad for Maddy, but she's gotten more tolerant, and it was sweet enough that she watched it anyway and liked it, and it didn't make her think of death.

She is definitely one of those kids who goes through a period of thinking about death. I never did, and Nora never did. But I know people who did. It always made me feel sort of shallow that I never did have this period of worrying about mortality. My father died when I was four, too, which you might have expected to bring on thoughts of death. I think it had sort of the opposite effect, though. People die, and it's sad, but best not to think to much about it. Anyway -- Maddy seems to be a few months out of the death phase, and that's good.

We cleaned Maddy's room. It's not utterly cleaned, but it is so much better. We got rid of the stuff that could be gotten rid of from the top bunk, and put all her stuffed animals up there, thus allowing us to easily strip the bed and replace the flannel (yes, flannel) sheets with more weather appropriate non-flannel ones, and making it possible for her to actually stretch her legs out while in bed. We got rid of the crap under her desk, and more crap on her chair. You can actually see surfaces now! Someday we may clean off the desk and the dresser, and paint the room green, and it will be wonderful. But it is already better in a huge way.

Friday night Nora's friend E. came over and played the M and M game on the laptop with Nora. Saturday I'm not sure what we did -- I think I gardened, and then we watched My Life as a Dog -- but Sunday we cleaned and then went out for dinner at some friends' house which was really fun. The girls were resistent -- no children their age (although frankly, children their age would have been worse. That's they way it is when you're that age). But even they had fun. It was hot, and felt like summer, and we drank gin and ate Indian food and gossiped about work and a watched a baby practice his walking skills.

The we went home, and then (!! at 10:30) Nora and I went to see Manchurian Candidate, but because of a broken projector mishap ended up seeing Hero. Which was good, although at 12:00 at night there is in fact a limit to how often I want to see the same goddamn swordfight, even in different colors. We should have brought Maddy, since she actually knows something about Chinese history.

Then Monday, we went to the beach! Stinson Beach! It was not hideously crowded, and the water was warm! Well, warm enought to swim in. I have since heard that there were shark warnings this weekend, but we were careful not to go out too far, and it felt so gloriously good that since we weren't eaten, I have to say it was worth it.

Then we came home, and Nora did some of her homework, and so did Maddy, and Nora and Kevin went to see Maria Full of Grace, and then we met at Barney's for dinner and then we came home and it was 10:00 and Nora had a fit about her unfinished Latin. So I sent her to bed, and she got up at 6:30 and did it then with great success and we actually all made lunches and got dressed and managed to leave the house (with the girl-next-door) in time for N and the girl to catch the train into town!

What a great weekend! I think that every month should start with a three day weekend, and every month should include ocean swimming, too. It really felt so good. Because it was so hot, and then the water was cold enough that when you went in, you sort of tingled, and when you finally worked up the guts to dunk your head in your whole scalp tingled in a delicious and refreshing way.

Here is the difference between California and Rhode Island. In Rhode Island all people, even lumpy people, go oin the water, and all people, even lumpy looking parents, have boogie boards in wild colors that they have purchased at the Ocean State Job Lot for 8.99. Everyone uses them.

In California, not so many people have bookie boards, since let's face it, there are about three weeks/year that you can enter the water without risking instant hypothermia. But those who have boogie boards have fancy professional ones that cost at least 25.00, and perhaps more, and they come in different sizes corresponding to different body types.

I mean, really.

In tasteful colors, too.

Oh, and wet suits.

Sadly, we left our lovely Job Lot boards in my mother's garage and I think they might be hard to mail.

Also, there is only one shower, and there are Germans in it who take about 45 minutes to remove every speck of sand from their persons.

Also, there are lots of people who park and then just look at the ocean. Pah.

There is, however, food on the beach in both places, and I think all would agree that fried foods and ice cream products are essential for a decent beach experience, although sadly, a decent clam roll is seldom to be had on the Pacific seaboard. I believe it may have something to do with the appalling lack of clam-roll-type hotdog buns out here (making it impossible to actually eat hot dogs out here either, incidentally). There is no Dell's frozen lemonade here, either, but that is a strictly Rhode Island phenomenon, so I'm not holding it as a major flaw.

It's hard to complain about much, though, as long as you get that excellent head tingle.

Okay -- got to go.


out of print - new releases

find me! - 2008-02-12
where I've gone - 2008-02-07
Where I've gone - 2008-02-05
where I've gone - 2008-02-01
New - 2008-02-01


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