January 11, 2005

I'm Back

Sorry for the extended delay--Kevin and I were out of town this weekend. I always agonize about whether to advertise this on my blog. I'm pretty open about personal information on here--both my maiden and married names are plastered all over the place and I'm not exactly hard to find (a definite plus, as some old friends have looked me up and found me here), but I always worry that our address will not be hard to find either and if I say we're going to be gone for a couple of days that's inviting trouble. So...I just left you hanging. Oh well.

We had a great weekend. Friday and Saturday we spent in Kevin's old stomping grounds, Berkeley. Friday night we got together with Kevin's college friend Anita and got to meet her fiance' Derek. That was a lot of fun and I really liked Derek. Saturday we did some shopping and met up with Kevin's high school friend Jennifer and her husband Chris. We hadn't seen them since our going away party last January so it was nice to catch up.

Sunday morning we headed down to San Jose to attend our old church. Oh my god, it was like we came back from the dead. Granted it had been a year since we left San Jose, but everyone seemed to be under the impression that we'd been gone at least 2 years. Anyway, they were all so nice and it was great to see them all again. I hope we're able to find a church like that here in Orange County. They really helped us a lot through the tough times. They were also having Ozoni soup, which is a traditional new year's soup made from Miso (soy) stock and Mochi (rice balls, sort of). As I was lifting the bowl to my mouth, I promptly dumped the entire thing on my lap. Luckily it wasn't too hot, but man, it was gross. It completely soaked me down to my underwear. After that Kevin wanted to stay and chat with a few people and I was like "No, we have to go NOW."

From there we headed up to my friend Dorothy's, where we met with Dorothy and Jimmy, Hai-Nhu and John (who came down from San Francisco), and Sandy. Dorothy, Hai-Nhu, Sandy, and I all worked together at IBM (they're still there) and it was fun to get together with them again. Monday afternoon we dodged the raindrops and did some shopping in Los Gatos, and then met with our book club Monday night. The book we were discussing was Monkey Dancing: A Father, Two Kids, and a Journey to the Ends of the Earth by Daniel Glick. The book is about this single father who takes his 13 year old son and 9 year old daughter on a 6 month trip around the world following his brother's death and his wife leaving him for another woman. I really enjoyed the book, which was good because it was my suggestion. Everyone enjoyed the book, actually, save one person--which is pretty much how every book club goes*. It turned out to be a very lively discussion and spurred lots of tangential issues like environmentalism, parenting, and endangered animals.

Today we went up to Palo Alto for lunch and a little browsing and headed back down to rainy Southern California. Despite the deluge(s) our house has fared very well (we are raised about 3 feet off the ground) and Kevin's work on the garage door seems to have sealed the leaking problem we had. Scout seemed relaxed and well-taken care of when we arrived at my parent's house. What a difference from when we've had to kennel her. She was spoiled rotten at Grandma and Grandpa's including multiple greenies, pig's ears, and sleeping in their bed under the covers. They reported that she was a very good dog so she apparently hasn't worn out her welcome there, although she was happy to see us (but not frantic as she usually is when we come back).

There have been a few books that were universally hated, such as Mangoes and Quince by Carol Field and the book that every book club in the world loved but us, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier.

Posted by Shelby at January 11, 2005 11:27 PM