Wednesday, September 7, 2016


The last two years, we've rented a place at Incline Village for Christmas, skiing and playing in the snow. This year we decided a summer family reunion would be a fun change. We arrived Friday night. Doug, who is an expert at barbecuing anything to perfection, fixed hamburgers after our long drive. My camera was packed and I didn't get a picture. Everyone resorted to a game of pool. It was Doug and Ken, against Laurie and Kristanne.
Kristanne had never played pool before, and Laurie, who grew up with a pool table, is a shark.
She knows how to bounce those balls.
Everyone had a turn at the table, and after the games, everyone decided to be silly. A bit of wine and tequila probably helped.
No one really cared who won or lost. Laughter is what counts.
The next morning, most of us went for hike to the National Park.
I was ahead and turned to catch this sisterly hug. Don't have a clue what inspired it.

We had seen signs about a rope walk in the canopy and thought everyone would like that activity.  But, it was closed. Left to right is Cedric, Ken, Virginia, Austin, who seems fixated on a two finger salute. Then Laurie, Theo and Kristanne. Doug and Owen stayed back at the cabin.
We stopped for a couple pictures, but the sun was at the high, bright time of day and we got a lot of squints and shut eye.
We snacked and reminisced for lunch.
At four o'clock Saturday afternoon, we skyped with my grandson Stewart in Japan where he teaches English as a second language.
We asked him dozens of questions. Here he is explaining that his deodorant melted and he had to shave his armpits. The Japanese people seem fascinated by his facial hair. Komatsu, is a coastal town of about 100,000 people. It isn't a tourist destination and they don't see many foreigners. Students are very disciplined and continually kind of bow and say "hye" as a way to indicate they understand. He is learning to use that expression as well and practiced it for us. Technology is awesome and we loved the ability to spend a half hour with Stew.

It was Ken and Laurie's night to fix dinner, and they prepared a marvelous shrimp dish, with butter and lemon juice and pepper. The kitchen is small here. Everyone went to bed early
Virginia made scratch muffins for breakfast Sunday morning. She picked the wild berries on their property on the Eel River.
She also got "into" olives this year and brought 3 different kinds of olives she made from trees growing around Santa Clara. Theo declared they were inedible and about the worst thing you could eat. I loved them and got to bring some home.
At 9:00 a.m. Virginia treated  Kris and I to kayaking.  Ken took pictures of us before he and Laurie went for a ride to see the scenery around Silver Lake.

I've enjoyed kayaking before, but Virginia wisely chose a double for us since my shoulder is not completely healed. I had to rest from paddling periodically and she had to pull for both of us.
Kristanne, always adventurous, had never kayaked. She took to it like a duck to water and said, "Hey, I get to mark it off my bucket list." We rested on a distant beach, then sunned and dried out on a rock when we returned.
Kristanne and Laurie enjoyed a game of Rumikub in the afternoon.
The boys played pool or read a book.
Everyone played 13, the national game of Vietnam. It is limited to four so each of us dipped in and out of the game. It is one of those games where kids have just as much chance of winning as an adult and Theo proved it. Not visible, off to the right is Doug, playing DJ and selecting our favorite tunes on the computer.
Cedric took to the kitchen to bake pies for dinner.

This cabin was as close to wreckage as you can find in a domicile, and the oven temperature was difficult to gauge.  He struggled to get them cooked well. But, as usual, they turned out delish.
So, most of Sunday was spent playing games, eating, gabbing...

Virginia showed off her skill with Theo's juggling balls.
During the evening, Hearts was the game of choice.
There was some high finance going on downstairs with a monopoly game with Austin, Theo, Doug and Owen.
Ken opted to wade through the New York Times and a San Francisco Chronicle.

Some of us walked to the beach and watched the fireworks.

It was a lovely, busy, relaxing 3 day getaway with stuff to do for everyone's taste. Can't wait until next year.

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