Except that you're not in it, Joe.
I'm home. Easy flights, but I'm gonna need a day to recover. My sister and I broke our promise to take it easy and schedule some down time during the trip. There was just too much to do, and too many people we wanted to see! Do I regret staying up 'til 2 o'clock almost every night? Not one bit!!!
First and foremost...it was absolutely wonderful to see Joe again after all these years. Everyone was terrific, but there really is nothing better than old friends. He and I have known each other through good times and bad, and as he wrote, despite the distance, we have always seemed to understand each other. That is a rare thing, and I so hope we see each other again before another 18 years go by.
Mame was a hoot, of course. (I expected no less.) I laughed more around her than anyone, and that is saying a lot! I wish we'd been able to have more fun together, but we couldn't get our schedules together. Next time, babe!!!
Roberta was exactly what I expected her to be. Down to earth, honest, frank, and gracious. A real survivor. I liked her very much. I will stop calling her "Boida," though, because she really doesn't have that much of an accent. We asked a lot of her, getting her out before noon. I hope she's back to her normal sleep schedule by now.
Frank. Well. What can I possibly say about Frank that hasn't already been said? Our "patron saint of agnosticism" (as Dys used to call him) was on his best behavior the night we met, and I thank him for that! What a lively (and funny!) conversationalist...and he didn't fall down even once!
And I got to meet the one-and-only tsarstepan, too! He was the quiet one of the bunch, but that was only because most of us were such blabbermouths. (blush) We really should have given him more of a chance to talk. He's a very decent guy, and I'm really glad I had the chance to meet him.
And last but certainly not least, Herr Thomas. We've met at gatherings in Chicago and Albuquerque (twice there, I think), and I always look forward to seeing him. He is an absolute delight. His parents were in town this time, so he really had to juggle his schedule to meet with us twice. I'm so glad he did!
My sister thoroughly enjoyed meeting everyone, especially at Joe's rooftop party (she wants the recipe for the portobello pizza) and going out for Thai food and Irish music with Joe. You all made her feel at home, and I thank everyone for that.
It will take me a while to sort through pictures, but I'm pretty sure the good ones are already here. We'll see.