Filling in the cracks, as promised: the Christmas holidays were fairly wonderful. First off, my whole immediate family was together. I got a chance to spent time with and get to know Lisa’s parents better, and reaffirmed my opinion that they’re good people. Truly good people. The kind you want on your side. Mr. Lucadamo is a wizened and wise soul with a courtly heart and some mean dancin’ feet. (He taught me how to dance! Really dance! I can dance to Frank Sinatra!) The Mrs. is overwhelmingly generous and steady, devoted to the ones she loves. My parents seemed a bit bemused at times at how well the whole thing — frankly an experiment — was going. And oh God — the food. Say nothing else about us, but say we can cook.
It was a bit difficult to get a moment to yourself. Since my parents constructed their house to be as open as possible — you want the mountains in your line of sight at all times — privacy is down rather far on the list of priorities. But the wine kept flowing, and we were fine.
The highlight of the trip for me was the Christmas Eve church service — the minister got it right with his message. Something about still needing Santa and the idea of generosity in our lives. Not charity; generosity. The delight in giving is a godly thing. You sometimes feel a little scared and guilty because it’s an unabashed expression of love; no safety nets. This year especially, none of us should be thinking about safety nets. Full speed ahead and damn the torpedoes!
Hey Dad, hey Mom, I know you read this: thanks for the weekend. Sitting on top of that mountain is good for the soul. Thanks for sharing your space and all that goes with it. And for spoiling me! I get so spoiled. As I pulled away yesterday morning (after breakfast with the Cajun — man, that’s an entire other blog — remind us to tell you about the naked FBI officers in the pool), 8 people stood and waved in the driveway. What a send-off! Family = good.
A few other notes: I adored The Fellowship of the Ring. Having been a fan of the books for many, many years, I was skeptical, but man, that’s a good movie. Peter Jackson, director/writer/producer, managed to flesh out a book while actually amplifying the imaginative possibilities. Like Tim says, he took some tupping plot liberties, but I forgive him. You gotta forgive a man who makes movies like Dead Alive (I have it on video if you want to see it — the scene where they kill a roomful of zombies with a lawnmower is not to be missed) and Fellowship in one lifetime.
A public thanks to all who gave me goodies in shiny wrapped boxes and bags — you’ll get private thanks soon. Special thanks to my aunt and uncle for the cell phone. Yes, yes, I finally caved in and got a cell phone. After years of insisting that I want to be able to get away from the madding crowd, I realized that the madding crowd seldom if ever calls me, so it’s no biggie, and they’re good to have on long car trips.
What else: I feel like I’m forgetting something that I was going to tell you about. Oh well, I know where to find you when I remember. Later —