I got a phonecall at 11:34am on Saturday. Dad was letting me know he was in Santa Cruz and did I want a ride to Oakland because there was a Mariposa Party. and I was like, "yeah! whatever, Finals Week will still be impending when I get home!" And the party was so nice, because all sorts of people we'd lived with and next door to came to say hi and to do rituals, such as Gifts and Time Capsule.
I always feel under a lot of pressure at Time Capsule time. Because, what if I die before it's opened and when my note is found someone mails it to Mum and Dad and they open it and it's like "Wooohooo! March 13th 2009!!!"? Or what if I say something that becomes unpc or science proves it wrong? Then I will look stupid to my future self. So I did what I often do when I panic, I drew a dinosaur*, then I calmed down and wrote down some current popular sentiments, then I had to start over because I had been writing on the biodegradable paper for the tree planting, not the lasting ten years paper. Jori got it straightened out. (I think people adaptively embrace competence in regions that are climatically deadly, and Jori is from the northeast)
Then out of nowhere, Joe and Mary and their friends who we spent thanksgiving with turned up in the yard. And it turns out they can't unicycle. (I KNOW WEIRD RIGHT?) Joe approved of learning to unicycle while juggling, but said not to bother learning to juggle more than 3 things - "Because, as it turns out, it is very easy for a spectator to name a number of things you can't juggle." That had not occurred to me, but I have had people ask me if I can do tricks. It's like, um, "if you look closely, I have got one more ball in the air than I have got hands." And Medea was there with Jordan, her DARLING little boy, who is very serious and likes to explore. And I scared Nathaniel, the neighbor boy who loves my whole family but is terribly wary of me. IF I WAS GOING TO EAT YOU I WOULD ALREADY HAVE DONE IT, LITTLE BOY. YES, GO, HIDE BEHIND YOUR FATHER. Not, um, really.
But there were dozens of delicious things to eat, lots of pasta and pizza and goat cheese with pistacios and cranberries, and deep fried turkey (Hey, I had that the last time I saw Mary and Joe as well, weird.), and this really dense bread that comes in a loaf about the size of a stick of butter, with brie. Oh my gosh, I wish I had the budget and the inclination to make delicious things at home. I can only make really good popcorn, pizza, and fries. So when I went shopping I got goat cheese! And other things! Trader Joe's cheap gourmet things!
Then there was a campfire! I love the campfire but everyone was drunk except me (at mum and dad's I only drink what they pour me, because I feel like it's respectful, except they always stare at me all mournful like "Well, she already stunted her growth, no sense locking the barn..." so I end up getting really thirsty and not drinking anything, and not getting water either, Not Before You Finish This Ounce of Wine, Young Lady.) so I got bored and came inside, to play with Nick.
Nick likes to hide inside during gatherings so no one will talk to him, but for a bit we had fun using Nini's fun fur and spirit gum to adorn ourselves. I had a Terribly Manly Beard, and Nick had arm fur, muttonchops, and chest hair. It made me think if I am ever a man with arm hair I shall dye it pink.
And then the next day we went to California-Dublin to see Mum and Dad's friends Steve and Ellen and their daughter, and we all went to the Dublin Town Fair. I drove from Oakland to Dublin and Dad instictively berates me whenever I am driving, and I can't just ignore him because I don't really know the route to Dublin. So I was merging, like I have done ten thousand times with Dad in the car, and he pipes up, "Yeah, *that's* safe." And mum adds "Caitlan, be careful!" and then it turned out Dad was not trying to be sarcastic at all, he just thought I should know I was merging safely. In his accidentally sarcastic voice. We re enacted this for Steve and Ellen, and Ellen joked that we ought to phone her when I'd be behind the wheel so she could stay indoors. And then it was time to go to the fair, and I drove our car and Ellen drove hers. I asked Dad to ride in the other car, which was good. Ellen doesn't do turn signals so she is a little hard to follow and she ended up following me and I missed our turn. Nick thought it would be a good use of his excess angst to imitate Dad berating me the whole drive, but Mum made him stop.
Anyway, the fair was fun! I for some reason thought I wanted a corndog. We had charming irish tea in the library when it started raining, and we rode the ferris wheel. (The ~1mph rotation of the ferris wheel made Dad nervous, as did the swaying from looking down at the ground, and the wind. That made me realize why me driving rather well at 60 mph is basically torture** and so I let him drive the whole rest of the day) The view was really pretty and we could see how the fairground games were rigged, so that was neat.
*Ask me about the time I was getting a D (post-curve) in stats and the final was so hard that I blanked and covered it with dinosaurs and then got a C in the class. Presumably because 1. dinosaurs are awesome, and 2. stats profs manipulate the grading curve more effectively than anyone in any other field.
**I think it's to do with his inner ear.