Happy New Year 2019


I thought about sharing a post yesterday and then . . . I just never did. More often than not, as any regular reader well knows, that's just how it goes: on a weekend day or a holiday, you just don't get a regular post, much less a standard Daily Lunch Update (DLU)!

I don't feel like there's a whole hell of a lot to share anyway. My vision of what New Year's Eve would be this year was kind of a bust, although that did not render it unenjoyable. I had a nice time. I was just irritated by last-minute flakiness of friends, that's all.

I had invited Gabriel to come up and join us, but he never said he would anyway, so no issues there -- he didn't disappoint me as he had no opportunity to. I felt like there was maybe a 50/50 chance Danielle would come, and it was slightly annoying that she texted me Tuesday evening to be reminded about our plans, and tell me she and Rylee were considering coming -- only for them to decide not to come. I even moved the car to street parking to give her our spot in the garage to encourage her. Apparently Rylee was excited at first by the idea of coming up to watch the Space Needle fireworks, but then said she would be bored if Shobhit started talking politics. I texted back, "We can avoid talking politics, come on!" I even mentioned that Evan and Elden aren’t particularly political either and they are much more interested in pop culture stuff, but by the time Danielle got back to me again, she texted me a picture of Rylee with all the New Year's Eve snacks they had prepared for themselves, and said they were already in their pajamas.

They do live in Renton, after all; I kind of get it. It would just be nice not to have gotten my hopes up to begin with. As for Morgan not being there, apparently she has been living with her dad since before Christmas; Danielle told us when we saw her on Christmas Eve that Morgan is "out of control" but as of yet I still haven’t gotten any more details about that -- not that I would share them here, as it's none of my business, really, let alone anyone else's. Morgan is fourteen now, though, and I have a feeling she's just at the age where some sort of genetics kick in the Hunt Legacy. Honestly I doubt she's anywhere near as bad as Danielle was at her age, but I couldn't say for sure since I don't live with them. Besides, Danielle's thresholds for what she can or will tolerate are also a lot more reasonable than Gail's were three decades ago.

So that leaves Evan and Elden, who had told me last week that they were going to come and join us -- and did not bother to text me they would not be making it until Shobhit and I were literally in our car on the way to the office. To be fair, Elden gave no other detail besides, We won't be able to make it tonight. We're really sorry. So, it's entirely possible an emergency came up, or they had a fight, or whatever. God knows what. Still, not knowing, it comes across as pretty flaky, especially since it's not like I hadn't kept them reminded -- I texted them the office address at about 3:00 that afternoon. And they did not bother to bail until we were on the way there, drinks and snacks for four in hand. I'm not going to lie, that's pretty fucking annoying and it makes me less inclined to keep sending out invites.

I have too many friends who do this kind of shit. Laney is one of the better ones, the rare occasions of her having to cancel or postponed being mitigated by the fact that we spend so much time together already, and also I have to have some understanding that she has somewhat precarious health being 61 years old and she had a heart attack a few years ago. I should also give Gabriel some due credit here -- I used to complain about his persistent lack of punctuality in the past, but it's been ages since it has been a real problem with him. His tendency for several years now is to make good on confirmed plans we have made.

In any case, just like last year, it was just Shobhit and me. It kind of lets the air out of the excitement of the event when I hoped for more company and in the end I did not get it, especially when the first New Year's Eve spent at this office had Dad and Sherri come up from Olympia, and Danielle also did join us that year.

Had we known no one else would join us, like last year, Shobhit and I would have waited to arrive until closer to midnight. As it was, I had told Evan and Elden we'd be there at 11:00. This worked out okay for Shobhit and me still, though, because together we finally got the fax of his vision hardware reimbursement claim to Aetna to go through (it failed at work earlier in the day; I wonder if maybe it went through at close to midnight due to lower call volume?). And we did have some popcorn, and some Whole Foods cheese on crackers I pilfered from the Merchandising pantry, and some piña colada. The fireworks display was pretty cool, with the nifty new feature of randomly rotating spotlights coming off the top.


Shobhit and I came to an agreement on New Year's Eve this year, that next year we will go back to watching the fireworks from Seattle Center itself, from the base of the Needle -- something we have not done since ringing in 2015. We've done the view from the PCC offices three years now, with diminishing returns. I mean, I still like it, but the sameness is getting stale -- and this year's display in particular would have been more fun from closer up to it: probably as a result of last year's Space Needle renovations, the display now includes these very cool randomly rotating spotlights shooting off the top while the fireworks went off. So as of right now, this is our plan: next year we will watch from much closer, in Seattle Center itself, unless it's really rainy, in which, conveniently, we'll still have the office relatively close by to use as a backup.

Oh wait. Actually, that may be when we ring in 2021. Because Dad told me a while ago he was considering hosting a masquerade ball for ringing in 2020, and if he does that, then I will definitely make an exception to the Space Needle rule and go to Olympia instead. So, we'll see about that. Either way I've got reminders about this new Space Needle plan on both the next New Year's Eves on my Google Calendar.

Anyway, before heading down to the office, our New Year's Eve was relatively uneventful. We lounged around, watched some TV. I took a few photos of the cats. (That link there is also just to the full photo album for New Year's on Flickr, now all tagged and captioned.) When we returned from the office, we were in bed with the cats by about a quarter after 1 a.m.

And now I face a new year, with more significant travel planned than I've had since Shobhit moved back from L.A. in 2016:

*Trip to Denver to visit Sara W, who left PCC in 2018 to go be closer to family (dates TBD)
*Trip to Syracuse, New York to be Danielle's plus one at her friend Lisa's wedding (May 28 - June 3)
*Trip to Las Vegas with Danielle (dates TBD)

And those are just the travel plans involving air travel, and doesn't include:

*Probable overnight trip to Vancouver, B.C. with Ivan during my Birth Week in late April
*Requisite Birth Week overnight stay at Jennifer's in Shelton
*At least one night in Portland, OR with Shobhit for our anniversary (June 14), on the way back from which we will go to
*My Niece, Britni's wedding with David in Chehalis, WA
*Requisite springtime visit in Wallace, Idaho (dates TBD)
*Probable October overnight stay in Shelton with Jennifer and Eric if they host another Halloween party
*Requisite December visit in Wallace, Idaho (12/14-16)

If all of this does indeed come to pass, it will add up to 27 days of travel for the year, up from 17 days in 2018 and 15 days in 2017, which had followed an average of 63 days a year between 2010 and 2016. That'll still be more than most years prior to that while Shobhit and I were together, but a return to the scale of travel I had in 2009 (28 days). I'm looking forward to it, actually -- a nice happy medium between the extremes of way too much travel for the first seven years of this decade, followed by far less than I would otherwise want over the next two years.

-- And, oh, right! I nearly forgot. Yesterday, while Shobhit was at his 9am-2pm shift, Laney came over for our New Year's Day Double Feature of Pete's Dragon (1977) and Pete's Dragon (2016). This had originally been scheduled for last Saturday, in the Braeburn Condos theatre, but she had to postpone at the last minute due to a need to take her car in for repairs. The theatre was booked yesterday so we watched in the condo, but that worked out fine.

Laney brought her own lunch and only accepted the tiniest bit of homemade chai before she left; by the time Shobhit got home just before 2:30, the second movie had only just started. I don't think he would ever have had the greatest interest in the 2016 Pete's Dragon, but it's a sweet kids' movie that's actually quite well made, and I knew for certain he would be super into it if it happened to be on -- and, basically, I was right. Also since he watched one of the movies with us he gets a point for this on the next Social Review, woohoo!

After Laney left, Shobhit and I watched some old episodes of the nineties sitcom Ellen and he also made salad for dinner while I processed a few extra photos and then whipped up my email photo digest of the New Year's Eve holiday festivities. Tonight, I take all the Christmas decorations down.


[posted 12:18 pm]