Wednesday, June 06, 2007

since finishing grading

"Vacation" is one of the sample labels Blogger offers bloggers for their blogs. It reminds me that, officially at least, I am now on "vacation." This apparently means a lot of writing, going many places, buying lots of fruit, and in general being incredibly busy.

Monday morning, filled with anxiety related to all sorts of things only some of which I might later write about, I prepared to wakl to campus to file final grades. I decided that I should wear my contact lenses so that I could wear sunglasses, it being bright and warm out. I promptly lost a lens down the sink. I haven't been to the eye doc for a couple years, so I was looking forward to going and getting, probably, new eyeglass lenses to replace the very badly scratched ones I've got, but now I suppose contacts will be in order.

I got up to campus to realize that I had forgotten the grade list for one class. It was printed and sitting on my printer. I phoned my loveliest and had her read the list. She was patient and caring. I realized I was still missing three final papers. This always happens. I wrote in Incompletes for those, made copies upon copies of everything, then filed grades.

I walked home. Lauren had been baking a surprise, something by way of helping soothe the petty wounds of the day. Grading always puts me on edge, and this other thing I've been dealing with shoved me quite hard edgeward, so I was teetering for much of Monday. I felt very loved. We took off to buy more fruit, hit the grocery store, etc. The prospect of fruit is always nice. That particular afternoon, however, without our being aware of it, had been declared Drive Like A Complete And Total Freak Day. Drivers whose apparent aim in life is to either snarl traffic or cause hazards bug the holy heck out of me, but they make Lauren exceptionally, not to say existentially, jumpy.

But we made it home. We had one of our favorite meals, then watched the Ottawa Senators lose game four of the Stanley Cup Finals to the goddamn Anaheim Ducks (as we call them in a good mood). That was disgusting. We rehearsed a few songs, one I've been uncomfortable with and therefore insisted on playing despite my frustration, and that made me very tense again. I felt my back and neck and jaw all clench (if a back or neck can clench), played the tune through, made mistakes, got further frustrated, did it again, grrr, grrrr, grrrrr. Apparently, this was unpleasant for my love.

I put away one guitar, upstairs in the Room of Requirement, then grabbed another and noodled with it a bit. Downstairs I heard the telltale clinking and general mumble of a kitchen being cleaned up and something be plated and set at table. It was by then around 9:30 or so, and all useful hours of the day had been exhausted. I hobbled downstairs, where Lauren presented me the dessert she'd made for us: little individual heart-shaped tarts with extremely pink pastry creme and strawberries. That made Monday evening much nicer.

Tuesday, which was yesterday, we decided enough was bloody well enough, and we split for San Francisco. The drive out was difficult because of the wind, but it was pretty. We went directly, and without any trouble, to Golden Gate Park, found parking, walked to the de Young museum (first Tuesday of the month admission is free, so we went there and told them deep dark secrets). There's some good modern stuff in the de Young, and that's what I mainly like, so that was good. We only took in the concourse floor, decided that it was late enough in the day to move on to find something to eat and that our legs were tired, and left for North Beach.

We again got there no problem, except for the woman who ran a four-way stop and nearly crushed us. Unfortunately, our favorite place in North Beach was closed, since (we found out) it closes every Tuesday, so we found another place, which was okay. I had penne with pancetta and spicy tomato sauce, and Lauren had spaghetti puttanesca that I dubbed The Saltiest Pasta Dish in History. I mean, yes, anchovies are salty, and yes, puttanesca has to have a lot of anchovies, but holy jumpin' was that some salty stuff.

There was no better way to cure that than to avail ourselves of the very last moments of Happy Hour at the San Francisco Brewing Co., just down Columbus. Thence to City Lights, thence back to the House About Town.

I could summarize the last two days in a word, if forced to by some bizarre provision of the USA PATRIOT act. If so, that word would be: Whoof!

1 comment:

Bobo the Wandering Pallbearer said...

On all of this, I have but one, if endearing, comment: on waking up and coffeeing this morning, observing the sorting new on CNN Headliner Newz, I thought to myself, on Doc Nagel's behalf, "Gooddamned Anaheim Ducks."