Of course this is not really fair because, by this time we are closer to New Year than to Christmas.
Christmas with Sam and Penny.
I bought Sam and Penny a countertop grill, the same one I had given Gary for Christmas. He was always admiring my grill and I thought it would be an appropriate gift for them. Originally I told Sam I wanted to give him a gift but had to bring it to his home because it would be too big for him to carry on the bus.
He thought I was giving him something approximately the size of a refrigerator. I told him that it wasn’t quite that big. I just didn’t want him to have to struggle on the bus with his laptop bag AND a bulky shopping bag containing his gift.
Our celebration actually took place closer to New Year, both because of his schedule and mine. Of course my schedule involved two days when I didn’t get out of my jammies. The first day, Wednesday, I spent doing nothing more strenuous than watching movies. On Thursday I got motivated: did 4 loads of laundry and cleaned the house up some, all things I had not had time to do since the previous Friday when Tony and Joanna joined me in celebration.
Sam and I met on Friday. Originally we planned to meet at Guang Gu, the large shopping mall at Optics Valley. That morning I hadn’t yet gotten confirmation from Sam about the day’s doings. In a way hoped that he had forgotten that we were going to meet. I was still not ready to face the world. But, rather than be blindsided I decided to send him a text message. That is how I found out that he was on our campus, just wrapping up his teaching commitments at our school for the year. He came over and couldn’t wait to tear into his gift, inadvertently robbing Penny of the joy of finding out what was under all that paper and tape.
Our plans included me guest lecturing at the university where he teaches part-time and that day marked his last class there as well. Afterward we went to his house to try out his new grill. They loved it… but didn’t know how to use it. I got to instruct them in the fine art of grilling at home.
I stayed at their house till long past time the buses stopped running. I had to take a cab home.