So last weekend I had the most brilliant time: two of my friends who live in the wrong continents were visiting, and in between I got to spend time with my parents and my partners, so it was just about perfect.
I took Friday off work and got someone to cover for me at shul, so I could leave after work on Thursday and get in at 9, instead of getting the last train and getting in after midnight. And our spouses rearranged things and took on some of our responsibilities so I could have an actual date with cjwatson. With Metamours' day coming up on Sunday, I should say that I'm really grateful that my partners are not only wonderful partners to me, but amazingly good at supporting my relationships that are not directly with them. Anyway, it wasn't the middle of the children's bedtime and we weren't already tired by the time we actually got to pay attention to eachother. Also we played Steamworks, yay.
MK, my dear friend who lives in Australia and doesn't do social media, was over for science conferences and his sister-in-law's wedding. So he and his wife and their younger kid came to Cambridge on Friday, and we went to Stourbridge common to play and look at horses and cows and boats and talk. I was really pleased to introduce MK to my OSOs, and partners' kids got on really well with his daughter. Which I was pleased about because I remember it could easily be excruciating when I had to suddenly deal with children of people my parents were friends with 20 years ago. And it wasn't just good luck, I could see Judith and Andreas were both working hard at doing the social thing.
In the evening MK and family went back to where they were staying, and my people helped me make a proper Friday night dinner like I haven't done for absolutely ages. And Benedict joined us, though he was a bit annoyed at arriving while we were still cooking rather than actually at dinner time. Last time the children made Kiddush with me, it was Seder night, so they had picked up the mostly correct impression that what you're supposed to do in Jewish ceremonies is ask questions all the time.
And just as we were moving on to the icecream course, hatam_soferet showed up. So I got to hug her and talk to her and I am so very very much happier when we get to be in the same place. On Saturday morning we had a chance to learn some Gemara together, basically the whole long stretch in Berachot about toilets that R' Zarum's shiur was excerpted from. And jack's good friend fishpi turned up with his wife and we got to chat to them for a bit, and then OSOs and the younger kids joined us, and fivemack, and we had a picnic in the garden and played and chatted and it was generally wonderful. I got some help making dinner for a bigger than usual crowd, especially from Judith. Benedict joined us again, with better timing this time round. After dinner we played a bit of Dominion; I should remember for future reference that games that take 20 minutes with two players may still be over two hours with 8 players; that ran later than was really ideal.
Sunday jack and hatam_soferet and I went to my parents' for lunch. We managed to squeeze in a little short sugia about who gets formally invited to say grace before we had to head out. And we had a great lunch and catch-up with my parents, again mostly sitting in the garden. On our way back to get hatam_soferet back on her bus, we stopped at the delivery office to pick up the shofar that she'd arranged to be delivered for ghoti. So we showed up at OSOs' with the shofar and there was excitement, and we spent a very companionable evening playing bridge and Roborally and eating Japanese takeaway and it was all lovely. Given the option, the children asked for me to stay around for bedtime, so I did that and got home a bit on the late side, but totally worth it.
So yay, that was just about the perfect long weekend for me. And it did me so much good to spend time with MK and hatam_soferet, in spite of the awful news I've been walking taller all week.
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