After all the noise from the weekend, it was good to come down to our den and just sit in the morning quiet. Outside the skies looked stormy, and I thought about the porn star and the president, the interview with Anderson Cooper, what it felt like in high school when two kids got into a fight and a large crowd gathered around, how they transcended for a brief time and raised themselves to star status, stars about to fall.
I kissed the cat’s ear and she shook it off, and when she does that the charm on her collar makes a sound like sleigh bells, like a tambourine.
The weekend noise came from the kids, kids of all ages at a school in eastern Washington where Charlotte competed in a tournament called Destination Imagination. It was a long day with a lot of time spent waiting. On the grassy hill by the school, kids tossed Nerf footballs and frisbees, and nearly hit us several times: kids not prone to athleticism or the arts, but rather team problem-solving and improv, future executives in the making.
When it was all done, Charlotte’s team placed third but did not advance to globals, and we had a group talk about the value of learning over winning, that was mainly lost on them.
It was after 6 with two hours of daylight when we left, and I gunned it all the way from Blewett to Snoqualmie Pass, to the ski slopes by dusk, lit up in orange light, fresh mountain snow.
By the time we got to Fall City, an Italian restaurant and 8:15 dinner reservations, the family mood had dissolved to close-quarter shouting, to Dawn and Charlotte announcing they’re getting out of the car and choosing a crowded entryway to wait vs. another moment with me or Lily in the car.
And the 8:15 turned into 8:40 before they seated us, but we all got complimentary drinks and the lighting and music were just right — and though we knew the dog would probably pee on the carpet if left too long, by the time we got home, we didn’t care — and in the morning I came down and sat in the den in the quiet thinking wow, we really lived those last 24 hours. And maybe later, I’ll get a nap.
Photo by Loren Chasse: fire from NE Portland scrapyard, claims the lives of 16 cats.