This morning I woke up on Jay and Melody’s comfortable couch and looked out their patio door into sunny woods. I pulled the covers over my head and returned to sleep. Later, I called in for the daily scrum, a meeting intended to be performed standing so everyone runs through their tasks without sidetracking.
“Are you being attacked by dogs?” my boss asked. It was baby Noah warbling.
I had promised to get to Tacoma in time for dinner at seven thirty, so at four I gave out a thorough set of hugs and hopped in the car. Portland traffic was briefly thick, but opened up as night fell in earnest. I swiftly arrived in Olympia and nearly fell asleep at the wheel.
“I’d better stop for a minute,” I said out loud to myself as I changed lanes towards the next exit. Unfortunately, there were no services at the exit, just a confusing intersection that spit me out into the left lane of a not-actually-one-way frontage road. There were no gas stations, so I turned left at the sign that said “freeway entrance” and proceeded back onto the highway.
Half an hour I realized that I most assuredly was no longer on I5, but rather on 8 headed for the ocean. Olympia had long been left behind in favor of an endless forest that crowded out the stars overhead. I turned off and went back.
So far, no aroma. Donald gave me excellent directions that put me directly in front of his home. They fed me pork roast and we called Sarah for video chat while sipping tea. I felt a little embarrassed to bring the internet into a home seemingly free of anything electrically operated, but seeing your loved ones as they talk to you is perfumed with magic, so everyone was happy. I even unplugged the laptop and carried Sarah around on a tour.
It’s a little strange to go from my own technologically-enhanced home (Techno Donald can drive his robot over from his apartment!) to another technologically enhanced home (part of my tour of Portland included a visit to the place where Jay’s work’s servers live — the “colo”) to the home of a luddite where I can pick out the ticking of no less than five hand wound clocks from where I am sitting and typing.
Jay’s teas, one of which had hand-rolled… balls… were better; I say this not as an admonishment of Donald’s excellent formal tea presentation, but rather as an excuse to say “balls.”
Tick tock tick tock tick tock
It is really nice to see my friends, and I feel really spoiled to be getting this week.
I haven’t seen Melody in a year or more, and Jay only briefly since then. It was the first time I had seen Second Noah, their child who in no way replaces Noah Keathly, but is super cute in lots of awesome ways. I will be coming back when we can all put our schedules together. We’re closer than we know, I think.
I hadn’t seen Donald and Chandler since loading their thirty semi-tractor trailers full of cast iron and lead weights. Donald has promised to buy a five pound brick of bacon for this week, and with luck, the Thanksgiving should be epic. I think that last year they roasted a goose or a velociraptor or something.
Mom, I miss you a lot. (other people too, but moms get extra shout outs)