Monday, September 05, 2005

I'm back. It was a blast.

I vowed that this post would NOT be gushy in any way. I vowed that I would relate the events of my weekend logically and factually. I will NOT gush and be all emotional. I won't, I won't, I WON'T.

Yeah, right.

I had a WONDERFUL time, and these people are so cool and so nice, you just wouldn't believe it.
I knew Hula the moment I saw her, standing in the crowd of people at the airport. There was just nobody else that lovely woman with the beautiful friendly smile could be! I KNEW it was her, I just knew it, and I was right. We hugged like old friends meeting after a long separation, which was pretty much exactly the way it was; we'd been friends for a long time online, and now we were actually MEETING! We also giggled and squealed like little girls but I'm not telling about that; you might think we acted immaturely. Not us, nope. Not even once.

Hula Hubby had left orders that Hula was to give me a piece of his Belgian chocolate as soon as I got to their house. So she did, and I forced myself to eat it. Oh, all right, I inhaled that delicious delicacy with the discretion generally associated with hungry coyotes. I understand that there are some people who take little bites of a big piece of chocolate; I've never met one of them personally and I am of the opinion that such stories are urban legends. I had that big piece of candy swallowed and digested before Hula could put the box back in her kitchen.

From moment one, we behaved ourselves like the mature women we really are. No matter where we went, our conduct was perfect. We did not disgrace ourselves in any way, nor did we behave in any way that might have drawn attention to us.

Nobody noticed when we posed for this picture. Our demeanor was so calm and mature that anyone who even MIGHT have noticed us here would only have been impressed at our cool, businesslike manners.

No matter what you might be thinking, Hula and Hula Girl were NOT trying to drown the mother and daughter in the other boat. It was not a race of any kind, and Hula and Hula Girl have way too much class to try and show any of the other six boaters who was the boss of this watershow. They might have bumped the other boat a little, and muttered threats under their breath, but really, mature women and elegant princess-like young girls do NOT threaten violence. Besides, it's kind of hard to be dominant when you're trying not to puke.

We played, and talked, and laughed till we nearly wet our pants, and then we started the cycle all over again. I felt like I'd found a soul sister. I think I felt that way because. . . I DID find a soul sister.

In fact, the only thing we didn't absolutely agree upon was James Bond, and the details of that disagreement I shall keep to myself so you will all think it was more sinister than it really was. We even have the same opinion about farts. And salsa. And chocolate shakes. And, and, and, and. . . . lots of other things!

Guess who got to hold and snuggle the brand-new Genuine Baby?

This boy is a sucker for the footie-massage. Hula and I had just that afternoon been talking about how people really do forget, after just a little while, how it feels to hold a tiny baby. Well, that night I learned how fast a person will remember exactly how to not only hold a tiny baby, but how to soothe and snuggle him as well. Not that I took advantage of the situation and held him all night so nobody else had a chance. I mean, that wouldn't have been fair. Who would DO such a thing.

Okay, I did put him down long enough to feast on Genuine's brisket. I'd read before, on his blog, that he liked to smoke a brisket for company, but never did I ever imagine that I would be the company. I felt like I was in the presence of royalty. What an awesome friendly guy he is! I'd seen Michelle on the webcam before and I thought she was a truly beautiful woman, but now that I've seen her in person, I know that she is even more beautiful than that. Together, the Genuines were gracious and generous hosts, and it was a fantastic evening.

I worried, before I went to Colorado, that people would be disappointed when they met me. I've never considered myself all that interesting or cool, and I really and truly feared that once the Hulas and the Genuines really met me, they'd think man, what a boring woman!

But I'm really quite interesting, and people fight exhaustion and win, just to keep listening to me and my fascinating comments.

See? See how entertaining I must be?

Seriously, he'd been up for hours and hours getting ready for company and he just couldn't hold his eyes open for another second.

Even sound asleep, Genuine is one of the most interesting people I've ever met. His niceness, and Michelle's sweetness, just shine out of them to make everyone else in the room feel welcome and comfortable.

Heck, they even let me borrow the baby for the evening.

Yes, I just sat there on their sofa, holding that precious baby, while people worked in the kitchen and waited on me hand and foot. I got the best job, hands down. And I can honestly say that the Genuines are genuinely awesome. I love them.

Just a few hours ago, Hula and I were standing right next to THIS phenomenon. And it had brothers and sisters scattered all around it.

I had been to Colorado once before, on a family vacation when I was about fourteen or so. I remembered the mountains, but I had never seen anything like this.

Hula drove me all around Denver and its surroundings and showed me all kinds of incredible sights. If I had gawked any more, my eyes would have started to spin like a cartoon character's! She filled me in on history and origins and music till I felt quite smart about Colorado. Till we rounded the bend in the road and saw something ELSE that was gorgeous and native to the area. My head was spinning with the beauty of the area.

She showed me dinosaur footprints. I think maybe that was the coolest of all.

I honestly can't remember ever having a better time with someone. Hula is just simply the best hostess, and one of the best friends, any person could ever hope to have. I love her.

Hula and I got all dressed up and hit the nightlife scene at the Chart House on Saturday night.

I don't think we have caviar on the salad bar in Indiana. At least, not in any place I've ever been.

But in Colorado? Caviar on the salad bar. Wow. And when it got dark and the city lights came on it was better than the Fourth of July.

The cheesecake, at the Cheesecake Factory an hour later, was equally good. Strawberry cheesecake. Don't you all wish you'd been there too? Of course you do.

You would have had to order your own, though, because neither of us was sharing. Yes, it was that good.

Oh, my trip was wonderful and fun and everything I thought it would be. The Hulas are generous lovely people, and the Genuines are generous lovely people, and even their pets were great.

As for the Hula and Genuine children. . . . I've been around a lot of kids in my time (LOTS of time but we won't go there) but I really don't think I've ever encountered kids quite like these. All six of them (including the baby) have beautiful manners. They are obedient, lively, playful, creative, well-disciplined, talented, and it is obvious even to a semi-stranger like me that they adore their parents and aunts and uncles. I saw awesome and inspiring and beautiful examples of love this weekend, and I shall never forget them. I could have sat on the floor and had these children playing all over and around me for hours and not tired of it. I wish I'd taken more pictures, but I was too busy enjoying it all.

Thank you, sweet wonderful Hula family, for inviting me to visit you, and thank you, sweet wonderful Genuine family, for inviting me to dine with you. Meeting you all was better than Christmas morning for me. Really, it was. You have no idea.

I'm not going to tell you all how I fell off Hula's deck because then you'd know how clumsy I am. At least I didn't crush Hula Boy, and I think the dog appreciated the spillage. And Hula only laughed at me a dozen few times afterwards. But I'm not telling you anything more about it.

When I stepped off the plane tonight, Hub was there waiting for me. He took me out for pizza at the Bloomington Pizzaria (established 1953) and we made total pigs of ourselves over double cheese and a few mushrooms.

And now I am home again. In a few minutes I will go into the kitchen and make a nice lunch for Hub to take to school tomorrow, and then I shall go to bed.

And I promise not to rub it in to him that he has to work tomorrow and I don't.

I have eight thousand (a loose approximation) quizzes and essays to grade tomorrow but I don't have to get up early for that.

Neener neener, Hub dear. I'll set the clock for ya.

Good night, dear Hulas. Good night, dear Genuines. Thank you both a thousands times over.

And the boring old woman is home now.


My family in Gulfport is safe! No other details, just that they are all alive and safe. What a relief.
Posted by Mamacita (The REAL one) @ 11:00 PM | |


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