This weekend found us at my family’s cabin* up near Shelton:
It was beautiful, cold and clear at Mason Lake (note: “Little Hoquiam” where my great-grandfather settled with friends!) for all three days.
“Let’s go to town, kids!” On Sunday we hit Olympia in part to take Ralph’s guitar to Music 6000 for an expert opinion. At the Blue Heron Bakery we had a picnic of our own home-made sandwiches followed by cookies, coffee and tea from the shop. Let me tell you something: in my entire coffee-drinking career I have never taken a coffee back for being too bitter, but I had to in the case of the Heron’s americano. I asked the barista if there was a mistake or …? After coyly pouring a bit into his own wee cup the be-mustached, fey young man replied, “Yeah, that’s pretty much what our espresso tastes like.” Feeling like a puss, I switched out for a drip coffee which smelled faintly like hippie feet (I am not kidding nor exaggerating) but tasted fine enough. The cookies were great and the Garlic Kalamata Sourdough loaf was divine.
Sadly, during our lunch someone joked about eating the “top cookie” (that is, the cookie in the top of a package of five identical cookies) and the teasing was taken quite seriously by my son before we could convince him that yes, the “top cookie” was reserved for him.
As for the sweater: this is the least feminine thing Nels wears these days. His sister’s a good sport, sharing her clothes with him.
Last weekend, my school friend Jodi visited along with her husband Doug and their children Cyan and India:
This was actually quite brilliant: the four children found a Connect Four game at the local coffee shop / popcorn factory and immediately began playing the game differently than intended. Without any noticeable communication (although children this age together can develop a monkey-language of their own) they’d fill up the board with alternating colors for each vertical row. Sophie, Cyan and Nels instinctively worked together at a high rate of speed while India (the youngest at 2) just did what the hell she wanted and the older children would either firmly grasp and re-direct her paw or, if she succeeded in dropping a color out of sequence, quickly retrieve the offending gamepiece and secure it. After a while the chore of catch-India-before-she-fucks-it-up got old and Cyan and Sophie started broadly hinting that maybe “someone” shouldn’t play anymore.
* Built by my great-grandfather back in the day; shared by hordes of extended family now.