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[personal|calendula] A grand day out

Worked the Day Jobbe yesterday, but pushed my lunch hour to the end of the day so and I could light out for ‘ wedding in Healdsburg, a wine country town up in Sonoma County. Had a lovely afternoon drive with the top down on the Witchmobile, checked into Madrona Manor, a truly glorious bed and breakfast in a Victorian mansion. Our room was in the old carriage house, with what may be the most comfortable bed either of us could ever recall. We took some quiet time to get over the drive, then lazed over to the swimming pool, the lazed back to our room to mellow out before the wedding.

This was an aloha-themed wedding, which meant I fit right in. I didn’t know a soul there besides , and she only knew perhaps a dozen people, including the bride and groom. Almost everyone was in some variant of islandwear. They got to the wedding party pretty swiftly, to keep us from getting restless methinks, in a back garden of the mansion which was laid out very simply and tastefully for the show. Bubble makers were handed out all around, then the bride and groom processed to ukulele and slack key guitar. When the vows were read — led by an officiant who could have stepped out of Animal House — they were in Dr Seuss verse. Bride and groom then recessed to “Tiny Bubbles”, while we all blew. It was without a doubt the funniest wedding I’ve ever attended.

Afterwards, mai tais and Hawaiian hors d’oeuvres were served around, and we milled and swilled a while. When dinner came, and I were seated at Table 5. We spent a great deal of time talking to a friend of the groom’s and his wife. She’d spent a year of college in Dakar, Senegal, and then two years in the Peace Corps in a small town in Mali, so she had a lot of very interesting stories to tell. Dinner was a melange of Hawaiian dishes and semihaute cuisine, very tasty and big. Later more time spent talking to a high school friend of (she went to high school with both bride and groom, hence the connections) and his wife, with whom we had a lot in common. Meanwhile, Table 9 got pretty drunk and kept erupting through the dining rooms in conga lines, song and dance routines, and whatnot. Wedding cake was finally served in the form of the most complicated cupcakes I’ve ever encountered, and a series of lovely and moving toasts, along with more irruptions from the Table 9 Players.

Once things died down, and I retired to a dark portion of the gardens to lie on the ground and watch the Perseid meteor shower. This was about 11 pm. The stars were out in force, down to fifth magnitude at least from our vantage point. Even a day behind peak, we saw easily a dozen meteors within twenty minutes, including five or six drawing magnificent glowing contrails across the Milky Way. Nothing like a rural sky…

This morning was a wonderful breakfast, another swim in the pool, a chat with the bride and groom, and heading back to San Francisco. Me, I’m off to Portland shortly, while is back to her real life as well. We’ll see each other again at the end of next week, but this was a fantastic coda to Worldcon in Montreal: Dr Seuss wedding, fine food, and the universe scrawling its signature across the midnight sky.

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[cancer|calendula] Just a bit more inside my head

heads back to San Francisco today. Our news is so much better than expected, thanks to the reprieve from chemo. Parting is tough, even though I’ll see her next week. I’m still processing, furiously so in truth, and haven’t quite come to the other side of it yet. Maybe I never well. And “reprieve” is the right word. Serious issues yet afoot inside me. Just not so deadly serious and urgent as before. A day for introspection, especially when my heart falls quiet a while once I have put my true love on the airplane.

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[calendula] A grand weekend at Points North

ably describes our weekend at Points North amongst her family and the fields of her youth. A marvelous time was had by all, albeit somewhat intense. I took a number of photos, but have just discovered I have the wrong card reader with me tonight, so they will remain inaccessible a while longer.

My day consisted of starting in Mendocino County, CA, being driven down to SFO by , flying to PDX, being met by and in the Genre car, dropping off at her place, then driving to Pacific County, WA to my parents’ beach house. So, erm, 5+ hours in the car and 3+ hours in airport and airplanes. Whew.

Beach house for a week (working the Day Jobbe from here as well as forging ahead on Endurance), then Omaha, then back to San Francisco and on the 17th.

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[calendula|cancer] Points North, and the weekend

and I are heading for Points North in a few minutes. This is where I get to meet the family. I have promised not to wear my underpants on my head this time. I will be partially or fully offline through Sunday night, so further updates will be irregular at best. Writing time may also be at a premium, but as I’ve already met the week’s goal, that should be cause for only minimal alarm.

In other news, my mom is fine. ER visit was a false alarm.

In other other news, the inside of my head is a complicated, scary place cancer-wise, with the chemo train now building up a head of steam at the platform. When I understand myself a little better, I’ll talk about the emotional process, as I do. For now I’m happy to love and be loved and have a distracting, still-healthy weekend.

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[calendula] A grand weekend away

and I spent a four-day weekend at Iron Springs, at the writer’s retreat and conference there. We were among old friends and new, including , , , , , , , , Chrissy, , a cast of almost a dozen others whose LJ handles are unknown to me or have slipped my mind, and of course our host, . Iron Springs is an ageing (to the point of being nigh post-apocalyptic) resort that is completely off the grid with respect to cell phones and Internet, so it was a very focused weekend.

This is where and I first met last year, and such a long, strange year it’s been. At least two of the folks there last year tried to warn her off of me (Hah! Take that!), but everyone this year seemed quite happy that we had eventually worked things out and are quite happy our own selves. Lots of walking, lots of writing, lots of workshopping, some good conversation, a guerrilla underwear signing, and a fair amount of romance.

Came back this afternoon and put on a plane back for San Francisco. I’m exhausted, and so is she. I’ll fly down tomorrow to hit my second opinion appointment on Tuesday for the cancer stuff, then spend the rest of the week with her. So indeed a grand weekend away, with a grand week to come.

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[calendula] Iron Springs

Tomorrow morning, and I are off to Iron Springs. We first met at this same retreat last year. It took a while for us to figure out what we might mean to each other, and we’ll never be done with that process, but making the trip again this year with the love of my life is an intensely wonderful gift from the universe.

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[calendula] She gets a cover credit

gets her first cover mention! Her story “Eastlick” is in the current issue of Black Static, retrieved from the PO box this morning.

A nice way to restart things after yesterday’s mess.

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[calendula] Strange days indeed

Very early this morning I got an email from , detailing the beginning of her emergency room saga. Various emails, phone calls and hop-to-its later, I headed for work (in Omaha) all packed and ready to bug out to San Francisco two days early. When I found out they were giving her morphine, I pulled the trigger on rebooking my flight. Spent almost the entire day traveling unexpectedly.

Meanwhile, discussing this with my spiritual advisor , he mentioned that today was the anniversary date of my original ER admission for my cancer saga. The overlay of that with my intense concern for created an emotional turmoil which lasted most of the day, thankfully dissipating before I reached San Francisco.

Flights were troublesome, first leg delayed so I had to sprint for the connection, connecting flight held over an hour for maintenance issues, but I made it. She’s home safe and well, though with no ultimate diagnosis. We’re both going to be off work tomorrow, so she can take care of herself and I can take care of her.

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