Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanksgiving & Such

So, Thanksgiving was great. This year my mother was out of the country, so I missed her and her moist, delicious turkey. Aaron and I went South to spend the holiday with his mom. His mom is fabulous and I missed her a lot so it was fantastic to see her again.

We traveled to San Jose by train, which is always lovely, and met up with Sean who unfortunately went to the wrong station. Stranding us outside for thirty minutes in the chilly Californian night air. We stayed at his place for the night, where we watched Inception, then drove with him the rest of the way down. We took the 101 which is extremely scenic but also extremely curvaceous, forcing us to make several stops along the way to cure my vertigo. Still, it was a nice trip. The view along the 101 is primarily bay and mountains. Pretty cool for someone who grew up on flatland, far from any ocean.

Of note was a stop at a vineyard where we parked and lingered for a bit until I was confident in my ability to continue the trek. Seeing actual vineyards is nifty considering the only thing grown in Ohio is corn and cattle. Right as we got back into the car and drove off a cop showed up. I guess all of our meandering made the people at the vineyard nervous. Like we were going to make off with a carload of grapes or something. Haha.

Aaron's mom was thrilled to see us and we made giant deli sandwiches to celebrate our arrival. She introduced us to a new show called The Event, which is made by the same folk who brought us Lost, so it was pretty easy to get sucked into. Throughout the week we were there, we'd end up watching all of the episodes she had saved. And wanting more.

Monday I woke up with a touch of a sore throat and a hint of a headache. Nothing serious. That night Sean picked us up and we went to hang out at Jordan's. Where Aaron, Sean, Jay, and I got into a game of Twilight Imperium. Much to my dismay, about halfway into the game I developed a fever and as the night continued, grew increasingly more sick. Never one to ruin a good time, I stuck it out like a champ, but by the time we left Aaron had to scoop me up and carry me to the car.

By the time we made it back to his mother's house I couldn't stop shivering. I shivered through my warm pajamas, a sweater, gloves, four blankets, and Aaron's body heat. Nothing I did could make me feel any warmer. The tell-tale sign of a spiking fever. Tuesday morning I was full-blown sick. Not only did I still have a sore throat, headache, and fever, but I had also lost the ability to keep food down and my voice also. I sounded like a crotchety old woman. Though that was the least of my concerns. I was worried that I would be too sick for Thanksgiving! It was only two days away afterall. On top of that, I was worried I would be too sick for Thanksgiving and make Aaron and his mom miss out on Thanksgiving too. My worst fear, however, was that I would get better but Aaron and/or his mom would catch what I had and be too sick for Thanksgiving!

We had to cancel all of our fun plans for Tuesday, though our friends were understanding. Between Aaron's pampering and his mom's pampering, I felt considerably better by the end of the day. Two bowls of soup, a Gatorade, snuggles, and a cup of hot tea later. My fever broke that night and I was left with the headache, sore throat, and no voice. A considerable improvement, I'd say (if I could).

As a housewarming gift, Aaron's mom wanted to buy us a television for our new place. So on Wednesday, feeling a great deal better but still sounding like Betty White, we went to Best Buy to get a feel for TVs. It was good to get out of the house for a short while and we found a TV we really liked. As an added bonus, I was no longer worried that I would miss Thanksgiving -- or cause anyone else to miss Thanksgiving because of me. When we got back, Aaron made homemade butternut squash gnocchi which was amazing. No seriously, you don't understand. It was amaaaaaaazing.

Thursday was a day of comedy gold. We woke and got ready then headed for Aaron's mom's BFF's house where we would partake in a huge gathering of Thanksgiving delightfulness. Little did we know however that we'd been given the wrong address... So when we arrived at this little lime green house full of Latin-Americans, we were sufficiently confused. It smelled great and they were strangely more-than-willing to welcome us inside even though we were total strangers. As tempting as it was, we decided to find the Thanksgiving celebration we'd actually been invited to, so we took our carrot pudding and began walking.

A few phone calls later, we were at the right place. Snacking and merry-making with people we actually knew as we awaited the turkeys. This was one of the first Thanksgivings I haven't shared with my own mother, but the company I was in made me feel like family. Obligatory disclaimer: not to say it wouldn't have been made even better had my mommy been there! <3

Friday we lazed about until midday and then went to visit Aaron's great grandmother. My headache had finally subsided but the sore throat remained and brought with it a cough, so I was very conscious about touching anything or getting too close. We were supposed to go see her on Wednesday, but I was too sick then, and afraid that I would get her sick. She's super old. The last thing you want to do is make a super old person sick. She's a funny lady though and her house is full of antiques and old photos. If she'd been up to par (her words, not mine), I bet she would've had some fascinating stories to tell. Despite not feeling so well herself she joked that she was older than the three of us combined. We didn't stay too long, wanting to let her get some rest after a busy week of visitors.

We stopped for lunch at a delicious Cuban restaurant that I can only wish was closer to us up here in Sacramento. On our way back we went by Trader Joe's and stocked up on a few things. Mostly sweet things (of course). Aaron's mom and I each got an Amaryllis! Since Black Friday is a whole lot busier in a state that has more people than cattle in it, we did our sale-shopping online. Got some good deals, though I forgot about our need of an A to B USB cable and a 56/57 HP ink cartridge, so I ended up having to make-due on those at full price later.

Saturday we had to say goodbye, always a difficult thing, and begin our journey back North. Aaron's mom loaded us up with things to take with us, as mothers tend to do. Not that it's a bad thing, quite the contrary as she has really good taste. Sean arrived around eleven and we were on the road not long after. We took a different route back up, avoiding the curves for a more straight forward return to spare my stomach. We met up with our friend Will and his wife Ari. After some chit chat we went to this quaint yet strangely busy cafe called Aroma and had lunch. The mystery of the busy-ness was soon laid to rest when our food arrived and I realized how magnificent it was.

After lunch we continued on home. We got in late, so Sean stayed the night. Unfortunately it was rather cold and as the first true test of our central heating, we realized it wasn't working! It was too late to bother with it, so Aaron and Sean opened up our broken small-space heater and got that working again and we all just huddled around it playing Texas Hold'em until bed time.

Sunday morning we went and had a mighty lumberjack breakfast at a local restaurant called Lumberjack's. Outside there is a big statue of a lumberjack and the sign has a lumberjack with a fork and and axe on it. Pretty win. The food was fantastic, though our waitress was quite flighty. I asked for pancakes and she just assumed I wanted a small stack instead of a full stack. Why? I'm small? I don't know. Then when it was time to go, she asked if I'd like a box for my remaining pancake. Not one, but two of us said, "Yes." So she picks up my plate and goes away. We presume she's going off to, you know, put my pancakes into a box but after a few minutes we realize she probably took my food away and disposed of it. So when she comes around again Aaron asks.

She acts like she's never seen us before and is all, "She never got her pancake???"

We're like, "..." So she goes back to the kitchen, has them make me a whole new pancake and brings that out to us in a box. Derp-a-der? Finally it's all set right, we realize we probably tipped her way too much, and go home. We hang out for a bit. Talk some Eve Online. Talk some Twilight Imperium. Then Sean hits the road so he can make it home before nightfall.

Overall, even though I got horribly sick, it was a really fun week. The sore throat and cough have managed to maintain their hold on me, even now over a week later. Hopefully that'll be gone soon.

In other news, gamer weekend this weekend! The heat is fixed! And Intruder Cat has officially intruded! It's been so cold, and he's been on our doorstep so often, that we decided to just start letting him in. That way we can be sure he's safe and warm at least a few hours out of the day. We give him a nice hearty meal of kitten chow (full of vitamins he's probably lacking), fresh water, and pettings. He follows me around like a shadow, which is super cute considering he's a little cautious sometimes -- probably because he's not used to people being nice to him. Eventually I'd like to give him a bath and brush the mats out of his fur.

We don't want to keep him full time until Neelix has arrived and settled in. Just in case they don't get along, we don't want him to feel like he's been thrown out again. If we can keep him, in the future, he'll need to go to the vet. I want to make sure he's healthy, for his sake and Neelix's if they're going to be pals.

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