I was stuck at home this weekend on-call, meaning that I carry a pager and am tied to my laptop within a 15-minute radius, such that if I get paged I have to respond within that time. This limits what I can do this Memorial Day weekend, but all things considered, it’s been a great weekend. Yesterday, we had a barbeque at a friend’s house. Our friends have Internet access, so I just setup my laptop there but thankfully wasn’t paged at all. The weather was truly pleasant and couldn’t have been a better temperature. Baby enjoyed playing with the little boy (two months older) and everyone had good Korean-style barbeque* and my wife’s soy/vinegar/honey chicken. 🙂
Today was nice too. My sister, the rap star, came over and announced that she is now officially engaged to her boyfriend. We are really happy for her, because years ago, she was deeply involved with another fellow, who tragically was shot and killed while trying to break up a bar fight. He had just finished basic training in the military, and was just starting to succeed in a life frought with challenges. So, for a long time, my sister took his death hard and had to rebuild her life. The fellow she is engaged to now is another really nice fellow whom my wife and I like alot. They make a good “opposites attract” pair (just like us) and I sincerely wish them the best. 🙂
Baby has been really active lately now that she can walk much better now. At 16, almost 17, months, she is walking pretty routinely now and rarely crawls anymore. However, now we are spending more time chasing her because she is getting more assertive about what she wants and doesn’t want. This is challenging because she’s still too young to really discipline (how do you talk to or rationalize with a 16-month old baby girl?), but at the same time, we have to give her boundaries. She is pretty well-behaved overall, but if she really wants to do something, it’s hard to give it up without finding a more interesting distraction, or just picking her up and enduring the struggling and crying. At the same time though, she’s really developing more personality than before. She’s the same cute and shy girl we knew, but she interacts more with us, and her babbling is more complex before. She also likes to play more games with us than before. Just today, I chased her at the local Starbucks and she was happy and giggling as ever. Quite fun for a father, really. 😉
Anyways, compared to a disastrous camping trip two Memorial Day Weekends ago, this has been great. That camping trip involved the same group of friends, our dog Napoleon (now passed away), and a lot of rain. My wife and I had bought the cheapest camping equipment we could and suffered cold and wet in the rain for 3 days. I remember one night, sleeping next to the damp, rain saturated wall, when I had a nightmare in my sleep of drowning in water. As I woke up, I was so disoriented, I flailed about the tent and shook my wife awake yelling “WATER! WATER!”. She was really confused by this, when I suddenly realized it was a dream. Sadly, all our friends in nearby tents awoke to my yelling too. :p We still retell that story from time to time.
Tomorrow is Memorial Day proper, but I don’t have much to say on the subject that 50 other Buddhist blogs will say better (but that may not stop me from writing anyways), so happy Memorial Day all!
P.S. One thing I noticed from the barbeque yesterday is that I really, really need to get out more. I was fairly busy outside of work with martial arts classes and temple activities, but after my wife got pregnant, everything ground to a halt, and two years later, I rarely spend time with friends outside of work or anything like that. Starting a new family and working a busy job, with on-call hours, will just do this to a person. When I was at the barbeque yesterday, I was so happy to talk to other people, I kept blathering on the whole night. :p
I realized later that my furious blog writing is probably my one consistent outlet too for communicating to others. That’s kind of sad in a way. 🙂 I really should get out and enjoy life more.