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The Literary Exhibitionist
birds with the wind

Holy shit, was this a long day!

I wouldn't normally have scheduled such different-but-fairly-major things on the same day, but today was the only day available for either of them. So there you have it.

Shobhit and I picked up Barbara this morning at about 8:25, and then we got to Gabe and Stephanie's about ten minutes later, only five minutes late after the time we agreed to meet them there. After some short deliberation, Gabe's argument of environmental friendliness finally persuaded me to leave Shobhit's car there in front of their house and have us all ride in Gabe's car.

Then we were stalled a little more by Gabe's and Stephanie's need to get something for breakfast, which I had already eaten. That didn't stop me from getting a 12 oz hot chocolate, though, which Stephanie very nicely paid for.

Finally we were off, and it must have been around 10:00 by the time we finally reached the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, which is about 8 miles north of Olympia and all of a mile and a half away from the Shipwreck Cafe.

You can click on the image above to be taken to the full gallery of our visit at that park.

After that, we went to the restaurant for lunch, where Dad and Sherri saw Gabe for the first time in years, and they met Stephanie for the first time. Sherri even brought them a gift for the baby, which they were both clearly touched by, as it was certainly unexpected and very nice.

Gabe thought he'd made a "faux pas" by saying "Look what the cat dragged in!" when Dad was finally able to join us when he got off work at 2:00, because Dad doesn't have any typical response at the ready for such comments, and Gabe thought it made him uncomfortable. I wouldn't say that, though. Dad's just dad, and they shook hands and it all seemed normal enough to me. I think Gabe worries too much.

It was really nice to have lunch and visit, and I think Gabe and Stephanie liked it too. I'll be down again next weekend with Becca, and then again with Nikki in August, and sometime this summer Hadley and I might come down so she can see the restaurant too.

When we got back to Seattle, we stayed at Gabe and Stephanie's long enough for Shobhit to have a glass of whiskey, and then we were off again.

While we were still driving back, I got a call from Hadley, who said her computer had been offline, asking me, "Did we say 7:00 or 7:30?" I replied that we had scheduled it for 5:00, and to my relief she said that worked better. I didn't think waiting until 7:00 was the best plan for a movie that's four hours long.

By the time we actually got back to the house, I had all of an hour to get everything ready for Hadley's arrival. Barbara discovered that we were out of coffee, and so Shobhit took her to the store while I mixed together the raspberry banana bread, and then chopped fruit for a fruit salad. When we all had the banana bread later, Hadley raved about it; it's too bad she hasn't had past ones I really felt were way better than this one turned out. Oh well; it was obviously sufficient, considering that all but three slices of it got consumed this evening.

The movie we watched was Gone with the Wind, which neither Hadley nor Shobhit had ever seen before. Shobhit liked it, but still he said, "Titanic was better." Clearly he's smoking crack.

Hadley brought bread and three different kinds of cheeses, as well as some juice and sparkling water. We all pretty much pigged out on all the shit we had to eat. The bread and cheeses she brought were delicious.

Not long after the movie ended, Hadley left in a rather odd fashion, talking to someone on the phone while giving Shobhit and Barbara hugs good-bye, and telling Shobhit to tell me she said good-bye because I was in the bathroom.

At first I didn't think she was actually leaving, and had just gone out the door to talk on the phone. When Shobhit said she left her pillow and blanket, I said she's probably coming back in. But then Shobhit told me she said good-bye, and I was like, Huh?

But I opened the door and heard the little ding that indicates the closing of the elevator door, so I ran out into the hallway and intercepted the elevator door, which made Hadley think I was just irked that she hadn't said good-bye herself. I told her she had left the pillow and blanket.

Clearly she was a little distracted. I later found out it had to do with the people she had given Budrow, the bloodhound she had to take off her sister's hands in Texas because her sister is moving to Shanghai. Apparently the friend of hers who took the dog wasn't very forthcoming with the news to her boyfriend, so Hadley's going to have to take the dog back.

Drama drama drama! Whatever; her visit was fun while it lasted. And she was later glad I asked her to perform her funny joke for my camera's digital video recorder, because when she saw it again online about an hour later she said it put her "back in a good mood."

I mostly asked her to do it because I wanted Andrea to see the joke, and I see Andrea so seldom I knew I'd forget it by the time I saw her again, and writing it down just doesn't work as well. It's not quite as good on the video as it was when she first told it to me, because she was nervous being recorded, but it's still totally cute.

So here it is!


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positive energy please