Mom lives so nearby, and I see her so rarely. We at least had Thanksgiving together tonight, hosted at my place for the first time. Michaela came by early in the day, taking on the greatest share of the burden of cooking; Mom and Joe came by later on, each offering a few dishes of their own. I helped a bit here and there, but less than I expected to as host, since everyone else had so many things they wanted to throw in.
We talked about the kinds of things we often do – chemistry and little scientific curiosities, our place in life right now, nonsense about Santa Claus. We watched a movie that, though good, was very much not a family movie, and at the end of the evening we parceled out the bountiful leftovers. Now that everyone’s left, I find that I could have asked them so many more things. So it goes.
Christmas will be with Laurel’s family if things go right, so I will need more than a holiday to see my family again soon.
the magic’s right
I start work on Monday, but today the office held a Thanksgiving potluck. I came along with cookie cake in tow, offering it next to the other desserts – pumpkin pies, sesame mochi, macademia brittle, chocolate decadence. Like the smaller group I met over lunch a few weeks ago, everyone there was so friendly, and I got to see the whole office chatting together, being so resolutely human. It’s a big company, so I wondered if the atmosphere might turn out to be a bit formal, but it really does seem like a great place to be. I’m really excited to get started with them.
Outside every window you can see new buildings rising up from the dust, growing like crystals to join the other skyscrapers, and each one makes the city shimmer more.
it breaks my heart
Fall here is always so mild. I am told that California doesn’t really get Fall, that the real autumnal fireworks are elsewhere in the country, but I do like the shows I get in Berkeley. Many trees don’t seem to notice the season at all, or they take it so slowly that their leaves don’t fall until the start of Spring; others, like this, leap into Winter wholeheartedly, and their silhouettes get tangled with the power lines for long months at a time.
I like the gingko trees, who wear their soft scales in a delicate yellow.
If I were to live elsewhere for a while – maybe someplace like Boston, where the seasons change so drastically – would California’s Autumn become too subtle for me to notice?
I woke up early to spend a few moments with Laurel before she flew away, and spent the rest of the day at least a little bit hazy. As expected, a nap didn’t quite help, but it muddled my senses and gave me a set of tangled dreams to mull over over while I remembered how to be.
As I arrived home, faintly sleepy, I found this squirrel sitting on a patch of red berries, munching on a few others. I feared that fetching my camera would ruin the moment, and perhaps it did, but it was worth remembering the feast this little fellow was enjoying, and how easily the tree bore his weight.
before I’m paralyzed
We had a proper Friendsgiving feast at the haus tonight, replete with delicious dishes for everyone. Laurel and I made ratatouille; Kendra provided a set of pumpkin pies; Mitch made an astounding assortment of foods, a fantastic display of his skill as a chef.
Well-fed, heavy with food, our party parted earlier in the evening than usual, ready to sleep deep. These holidays are a welcome thing.
too many cooks
Laurel and I had a little day together, walking about Downtown to see what we would see. After comic books we stopped by a café, hoping to read by the window over cocoa and coffee. It was a peculiar place, with an ostensible Parisian theme; the employees wore stereotypical French outfits, black and white striped shirts with black berets. Pastries were arranged like a buffet, inviting patrons to collect their baked goods while they waited in line, and an array of mounted monitors advertised the café’s products.
It’s actually a South Korean chain, offering its own play on French pasties (and Belgian waffles, and a number of other things), here in California. Another oddity of globalization; everything is blending more and more.
We went with a little sponge cake; here Laurel is scooping some whipped cream from it with a curl of chocolate.
Some strange places today, but I got to spend it with Laurel, and for that it was lovely.
foux du fa fa
Just this one skewed snapshot today, because today was Smash Day. These fine folks came by to celebrate with a proper marathon of the new game; a few of Jacob’s friends joined in as well, and we had a good crowd through the evening.
Smash Bros is, somewhat inexplicably, a game that I could play almost forever, and a new installment in the series is a rare occasion that actually brings out other people who’d like to play. It’s been a good evening – and I should do something else with the rest of the weekend, to keep myself human.