Wednesday, October 16, 2002

I Left my Home, I Left my Home, Yeah, Yeah...

I suppose you're all wondering what happened to me this past weekend. Perhaps just a little concerned after ranting about goose conspiracies. Sure you are.

Well, it was as rough as we thought it was going to be. Stacey and I are exhausted, and came back to work yesterday feeling several years older and not at all rested from the long weekend.

Friday was a total washout and I'm real upset with my selfish father. I gave him many opportunities to re-schedule for another weekend, telling him over and over that it was our anniversary, but he insisted on doing it on that evening. Which I guess is fine, family's important, too. If the family was there, that is.

Stacey and I showed up at my dad's place to find out that the rest of the family had cancelled on us. I discovered this when I realized there were only three settings at the table, even though I had talked to him an hour earlier and he made no mention of the fact that the others weren't going to be joining us.

My step-mom and older step-brother were in Aurora, helping out another family member in need (which is cool, but dad should have told us). My step-grandmother cancelled earlier that day (which is cool, I don't really know her, but dad should have told us). My youngest step-brother was at a commencement ceremony (which is cool, but dad should have told us). The middle step-brother was HOME, but ate earlier and hid in the basement the whole time we were there (which is NOT cool). Then dad served me re-heated leftover lasagna (and pasta that was too spicy for Stacey) and talked about himself for the next two hours. We left early. I don't expect to go back any time soon.

We tried to recoup a bit by watching Almost Famous, starting a tradition that we may hold far, far into the future. Even the powers of such a brilliant, sentimental, heartwarming movie weren't enough to stem our exhaustion or disappointment, but it sure did help.

Saturday was a between completing the house decorations, visiting the Viking exhibit at the National Museum of Civilization (which was excellent, by the way), grocery shopping, cooking, and cleaning up after the meal, we didn't get a lot of down-time. We cooked fajitas, a favourite for us when we have's relatively quick, it's tasty, and who doesn't like fajitas? It was a good choice, they didn't last long.

I capped off the evening by meeting up with Mike on the Elgin Street bar strip. It was great seeing him again, although I would have really liked to have spent more time with him and I wanted to show him my new place. Some other time soon, I hope.

Sunday was spent up at the cottage, as promised. Despite a minor spat with Stacey's sister that we had on the way up, it was a nice time. By this point, though, I was getting cranky, and playing a competitive game like Trivial Pursuit didn't help (I get hella fierce at that game). It ended on a contentious note with an unclear answer (Mercury) to a badly-worded question (something along the lines of "what was on the head of the 52 dimes retrieved from Liberty Bell 7?").

There're three interpretations we came up with: a picture of the planet Mercury, a representation of the metal mercury, and my answer, a picture of the Mercury space capsule (kind of like a commemoration coin or something, since Liberty Bell 7 was Gus Grissom's Mercury capsule and the second manned spacecraft the U.S. sent into space). Although there was some arguing about whether "Mercury," as in the name of the Mercury space program, meant the same thing as "the Mercury space capsule", but in the end it was late, and we were all tired, and nobody knew for sure what the answer was, so they gave it to us.

We won, but it was bitter, which didn't make the win feel very good. After the game, I realized "Mercury" could mean the roman winged-god, Mercury, a little too late. In the end, it turns out this was the correct answer to the question. Dagnabbit.

And yes, the bed made its usual "U" shape, much to my delight.

On Monday afternoon, Stacey and I had a brisk walk in Gatineau Park and spent some time enjoying the colours and snapping some pictures. I realized that I don't spend nearly enough time in the park, considering it's so close to home. Sometimes it's hard to appreciate what you've got close-by when there's so much else out there farther away. We capped of the evening with a delicious mom-cooked meal and some familial reminiscing about when we were little, something that usually comes up at Thanksgiving. It was wonderful, but I was so, so tired.

Stacey and I have decided we can't keep doing this. Four families every holiday is too much, and as much as we don't want to disappoint them, our families will have to understand if we can't see everyone every time. It may get complicated, juggling and balancing everyone so everyone's happy, but if it means our continued mental health, what other choice is there? Short of having a family of our own...*shudder*. Not ready for that, not even to use as a regular iron-clad excuse.


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