six hours of food conversation
Tuesday, November 26 2013
At around six this morning there was a commotion outside, and when we looked out, we could see multiple police cars with flashing lights and at least one fire engine. That's a typical response to a call place to 911 (and one of several gratuitously wasteful uses of tax dollars that genuinely aggravates me), and so I assumed a neighbor was having some medical emergency. [Days later, though, Gretchen's father would talk to a tow truck operator who would tell him that a car had lost control on a patch of ice in the bend in front of our house and had actually rolled over.]
Ray came over this morning with his dog Jack and his brother's dog Bruce. Recently Ray's brother was diagnosed with stage IV colon cancer, and so Bruce has been staying with Ray and Nancy. While Ray, Gretchen, and all four dogs were walking in the forest, I finally got around to launching the customary pre-guest-arrival cleaning jihad. I normally would have done that yesterday, but I was too focused on the Lightroom plugin work I needed to complete before a meeting that was to happen today in the early afternoon (and I can really only focus on one project at a time).
After the meeting, I celebrated in the customary way, by excavating a bit more rock in the basement of the greenhouse. I managed to find a weakness in the otherwise-solid reef of bluestone, pealing back well over a hundred pounds of it.
After Gretchen's parents arrived, the conversation somehow managed to focus almost exclusively on food (its preparation, logistics for buying it, and various restaurant tales from around the world) for something like six hours straight. I did my best to socialize despite the (to me) uninteresting nature of the conversation, but occasionally I'd sneak off to the greenhouse to do a bit more excavation. Snow turned to sleet and then to rain, gradually raising the water table enough for it to start trickling into my excavation through cracks in the rock. This was the third time this has happened since I started this phase of excavation back about a month ago.
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