Monday, August 10, 2009

Day 24: Dinner for Seven

Photo by Cassandra Jordan (CJ) Young

There are things about family dinners that seem inevitable. Too much food will be eaten, and a drink or two beyond what is recommended will be consumed. Old times will be recalled, embarrassing incidents will be told in great detail, people we have known and loved our whole lives will be called the wrong name. And I will say something stupid. Last night was no exception.

Peg, Linda and I drove to Sandy and Dave's for dinner the last two nights. Saturday, Sandy and Dave made great barbecued steaks and salmon with fresh corn and salad. We all ate too much to have the dessert Sandy had made.

Yesterday, LK did much of the cooking here and the pork and roasted potatoes were transported. Sandy and Dave walked across the street to a neighbor who grows corn. And we somehow found enough in reserve to try dessert. Two great meals.

Add in a few cocktails and a couple bottles of Ceja rose, and we were having a wonderful evening last night. Jordan's friend CJ took that picture of us all, and that's Christopher next to me. He'd flown in from Portand for the week which was a special bonus this trip.

We talked about so many old times. We talked about our first joint family holiday in Cape Cod in 1994, about the California home LK and Sandy grew up in. We talked about Matt and Jay in Oz and we talked about Steve and Gus. We even made it an official family dinner by turning on the TV next to the table because the Buffalo Bills were playing a pre-season game at 8.

I discovered that my mother is not alone. I can safely predict that some time next week I will be called Bobby, in much the same way that Peg looked Sandy squarely in the face and called her Linda. I think Sandy could have had a complaint except that she looked Dave squarely in the face and called him Don. I think all of this is fairly normal, but perhaps the second bottle of rose had something to do with it.

And yes, I did say something stupid. A little background first. If you look back a couple of posts, you will see a picture of LK with her Aunt Phyllis and cousin Jo. Everyone has a big smile on their faces. My trick as photographer was to say, just before snapping, "I want all of you to imagine that I'm taking your picture with no clothes on." Believe me, people laugh at that thought.

Last night CJ, who was visiting Jordan, was asked to take the group picture. I figured everyone would crack up if I told them how I had made the three ladies smile for the picture. Unfortunately, I got it a bit twisted and told everyone to imagine CJ without her clothes on.

As LK explained to me later, that's not the best thing for a fat old fart to say to a nice young girl. She also said she knew I had mixed up what I was trying to say. Anyhow, it didn't have the desired effect. You can see that only a few of us are smiling, and that everyone except LK (who understands me) has moved as far away from me as they could.

I am looking forward to more family dinners this week. And, thankfully, we have polished off the rose.

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