Oh lambies, I have so much to tell you. First of all, it appears I do not have kidney failure [yay!] because the blood tests came back normal, although the TSH test shows that my thyroid has further declined in function, and I will therefore be pursuing a small bump in my Synthroid prescription. FASCINATING. I've been feeling better and better (tired today, but for good reason--we will get to that in a minute), and since I was not in any danger, I was free to go on my San Jose trip. The weather was cranky on Friday morning but Snoqualmie Pass was open, so I showed up for my shuttle at the appointed time, and we went. I don't mind telling you, it was kind of harrowing. We had to chain up and that took awhile, because the driver didn't seem like he fully knew what he was doing, and with that and the terrible weather, I arrived at the airport NOT two hours before my flight, as scheduled, but 30 minutes before my flight. I fidgeted through check-in and zoomed through the security check and to the gate. The flight was slightly delayed so I could relax a little bit, and then I realized I'd left my scarf at security check. Goodbye Old Friend; you kept me warm.
[Sidenote: The Pass closed not long after we got over it and was closed all weekend. I feel very fortunate to have traversed it in time.]
After all that getting to the airport on time worry, the flight was a total breeze. I wasn't even nervous on take-off like I usually am--I felt cradled in the hands of the Universe. I realize that seems super cheesy, but truly that was the way I felt. Feel free to mock, you Mocking Mockers. Anyway, the flight was uneventful and I got my bag quickly after we landed, and then called Miss Catie's cell phone. In no time she zoomed up in Roger the Pilot and spirited me away. Lovies, Catie is one of my favorite people in the whole wide world. If there's a person who is more fun to be with, then I just don't know what. I feel privileged that I was able to spend a bit of time alone with her, driving and going to the art store and kissing her cats at her house; it was awesome. We picked up Craige and the three of us kissed cats some more and then went to Catie's favorite grocery store. After that the trip gets a little fuzzy--people started arriving from all over and there were trips to the airport and strategizing about trips to the airport, and Violet shimmered onto the scene, and then Jen [LOVE! I was nervous to meet her because I've been reading her diary for so long and wanted so badly for her to like me instead of thinking "Why have I wasted so much time reading your diary??", which could totally have happened, but fortunately Jen is a very kind person.]. After a time, Tracy appeared, and then my Kimmy, and Elisabeth, and then poor Beth finally arrived (she had major flight delays) and couldn't get a cab from SFO, so Catie and Craige went and got her and the others went to the hotel.
I could keep on telling who arrived when and what happened after that, sequentially, but I'm pretty sure you're already skimming [CRAIGE], so I think I'll switch to recounting only the high points.
-- The Food: We had pho on Friday night, a sushi FEAST on Saturday night, and tapas on Sunday night (with plenty of sangria). Tracy and Suzi put together a fantastic lunch for us on Saturday at Tracy's house (she has a really interesting and great house); there was much talking and eating. Catie made a wonderful brunch on Sunday and yesterday she took those of us leaving that day to breakfast at her favorite place. I had eggs benedict florentine and MAN that was good. I love eggs benedict but am sometimes afraid to order them, for fear I'll get a bad hollandaise sauce (that happened once and it was a Horror--it tasted like lemon fresh Pledge). The breakfast buffet at our hotel was not as good as it looked, but it was pretty easy to put together a good breakfast from the various offerings. All in all, we ate Extremely Well this weekend. The End.
-- The Collaging: Catie got a bunch of little canvases and gave us access to all her amazing collage supplies, and we made alphabet collages for Karyl's impending new baby. It was a lot of fun and I found out these are some very artistic and talented women. I took pictures of all the collages and will post to Flickr soon. Basically the collage thing was so much fun it inspired me to make some of my own (I have loads of things I've been saving that would be good in collages); I bought a small canvas at a nearby supply store today at lunch and will see what I can make.
-- The Cocktail Party: Oh lordy. I don't think raucous is too strong a descriptor for this party; if anything it is not strong enough. There was near-constant laughing and talking and singing and a tiny bit of cavorting. Kimmy got super drunk and turns out to be the funniest drunk I've ever beheld, and then a cop came to tell us we should shut the windows of the hotel room but that we could carry on, which to Tracy seemed very reasonable. Not too long after that it was time for Kimmy to be put to bed, so Elisabeth and I hauled her, giggling, to our room and started the proceedings. I have heard tales (and seen videos) of continued partying, including the singing of show tunes ["whom whom whom!"], but by that time the three of us were asleep, or at least in bed. I was worried Kimmy would feel terrible the next day, but she was surprisingly well. Unfortunately Elisabeth was coincidentally stricken by a virus and was Quite unwell, poor thing. I won't go into details, but I hope someday she will be able to make art from that pain.
-- The Janets: I should probably have talked about them first, but I needed to collect my thoughts. The Janets are, in a word, Fabulous. Some of them I have known on the internet for a long time, and they turned out to be even better than I could have imagined. And the ones I haven't known very long are also amazing and I feel honored I was able to meet them. I do wish my social awkwardness had been less in evidence [it sort of came and went, but was more prone to sticking around after 9:00 pm, which is when my brain begins the shutdown protocol. nice.], but I'm not really all that mortified because in observing the socially adept Janets, I feel I picked up some pointers for my next social occasion. It was a learning experience and I was learning from the masters. But enough about me; these Janets are funny and smart and creative and kind, and also pretty. And Jen, she is sexy like Catie's cat, Petey, but unlike Petey she has a great butt. There, I said it. And I love Catie so much; it's her birthday today, you should go wish her well. Oh Janets: I am proud to know you. And Kate Musgrove, if you read this I want you to know that I loved meeting you but had trouble keeping up because you have an agile mind and I'm not good in a crowd of strangers. You are terrific and you made me laugh a Lot and I'm so glad you were there.
-- A Stupid Thing I Did: Left my cell phone (such as it is) charger at home. I had made a mental note to be sure and bring it, but in the rush of last-minute packing I forgot it and that ended up causing me some anxiety, since the Janets were communicating plans by phone and I needed to save at least Some battery power to call Francisco to pick me up from the shuttle drop. It ended up working out okay, but the whole San Jose phone experience convinced me that I really need a new phone instead of that old stupid phone that is all pitted and scarred from Francisco dropping it so many times. I want a flip phone, with a camera in it. I realize those are the norm nowadays, right? But you haven't seen what I'm working with, unless you have, in which case you're saying "that sounds very reasonable".
My flight back was easy breezy (I cried when we took off because I loved meeting all those amazing women -- and Andy -- and wish we could all live next door to each other) and I was back at Seatac in plenty of time to catch my shuttle to Eburg. I got my suitcase and a sandwich and then thought HEY, I should go to lost and found and ask after my scarf. So I did and they had it! Welcome back, Old Friend. You're keeping me warm once again. My shuttle was a bit delayed because of avalanche control, but I was dropped off a little after 8:00 and Francisco was waiting to pick me up. There was a man on my shuttle who was adorable and I wanted to put him in my pocket. He was about 5 feet tall (or less, from what I could tell--I never stood next to him for comparison), and I saw him at the airport, saying what sounded like "30 minutes HELLO. 30 minutes HELLO" into a pay phone, and then I observed he was just in his socks for a long time until he put his shoes on. I'm not sure where he was from, but he was speaking what sounded like a Slavic language (to himself) and had the cutest mannerisms ever, except for Beth's. I guess he was going to Yakima, because that was the next and final stop, but it would be nice if instead he could come live in my sock drawer. Sighhhhh.
Tonight I'm going to finish unpacking and probably do some laundry and lite organizing. And then I'm going to watch television, because I'm tired and that sounds like exactly how much I want to exert myself. I will go to bed early and get back on my early to bed, early to rise schedule and maybe use the treadmill tomorrow morning. Maybe tonight while we're watching television, Francisco will wear his outfit that I have recently named his "Namaste, brother" outfit. It's a pair of loose-fitting, knit, charcoal grey pajama pants, a black mock turtleneck, and a dark cardigan sweater vest with only the top button buttoned. Namaste, brother (*palms together with fingers pointing up*). Namaste.
I guess that's about all I have to report at this time, but more will be forthcoming as I remember it.
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