It’s still fairly early…

It's still fairly early morning, and I'm sitting at Mykle's desk, enjoying the crisp breeze through the open window. I'm in Portland, a new city for me. So far, it's beautiful.

We had a nice dinner Tuesday night with M'ris and Timprov and Mark; the chicken was yummy and the mint brownies were amazing. Yesterday is something of a blur; some semi-frantic finishing up of things and packing in the morning, followed by hopping on a plane with Jed and coming up here. We picked up a rental car at the airport and drove out to Mykle and Gisene's; Mykle is a friend of Jed's from high school. They have an adorable baby girl, Phina, who is about a year and a half old. She managed to break my Visor keyboard when I cleverly gave it to her to play with (she had seen me opening and closing it, and tried to do the same, but missed a crucial step), but luckily, Mykle pulled out his Leatherman and fixed it. If it had been broken, it would have been my own darn fault; I know better than to take my eyes off a smart kid with something breakable in her hands.

They have a fabulous garden (according to the in-flight magazine, everyone in Portland has a fabulous garden) and a lovely house. Let us not contemplate what this large a house would cost in Berkeley, eh? We sat in the back and drank water and ate chips and salsa and peanut sauce. It was good. In the evening, we went by a friend's place with them, for yummy barbecue (really excellent pasta salad: pasta, pine nuts, chunks of feta cheese, red onion, and a tiny bit of oil and vinegar for the dressing, very light; also yummy cornbread thing and homemade ice cream, which I don't think I've ever had before). There was much shooting off of small firecrackers, including a war of bottle rockets. Phina found it all rather distressing, so we eventually dropped her and Gisene back at the house, and then Mykle took Jed and me to the fireworks on the river. They were lovely. A truly gorgeous river walk, followed by a good view of satisfyingly dramatic fireworks. Lots of lights, not too many booms. Jed doesn't like booms. (I kind of do, but I like pretty lights better.)

Somewhere in there I managed to call Paul and leave him a happy birthday message. Happy birthday, Paul! Must be nice always having fireworks on your birthday...

The 4th is a good day for me too, though I don't always remember that; I met Jed on it, four years ago. He had, if I remember right, heard about me from a mutual friend, and he looked me up at WesterCon to say hi -- I was in the midst of Clarion, and at least semi-out-of-my-mind. I'm lucky I was coherent enough that he decided it was worth talking to me again. Very lucky. Very very lucky. It is so nice having a Jedediah in my life.

Today, I work some, have a phone conference, and then we tromp off to the convention. There's not so much we want to do there today, so we may actually do a little sight-seeing. Portland has amazing gardens, according to the in-flight magazine. Back to Mykle and Gisene's for dinner, and then tomorrow we move to our hotel and slide deep into convention world. As usual, updates may be infrequent for a few days.

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