Friday was OMGTEHCRAZY.
After working all day Thursday (till 1.30 or so), I got up at 6 to try to finish some revisions to a report. Pulled on some clothes to drive the kids to school and then raced home to get back to it – and had just got to the end when a knock on the door heralded the arrival of my personal organiser. Sadly (for me, for my client and, perhaps most of all, for the colleague/company director who was also working on the report), “got to the end” does not mean “completely finished revising” but rather “did a really thorough revision of the first half or so and a very quick touch-up on the last bit”.
Three hours later, I was knackered and a bit disoriented. We blitzed the living room, packing some stuff into boxes and throwing out even more. We even packed up all the ornaments in my china cabinet, leaving me free to photograph it and send the photo to an auction house to arrange to sell it (sniff – but we really don’t have room for it). The living room looks a lot emptier now.
But it was time to act! It was now 12.45 and I was due at school for games by 2.30 – and it would be our very last games session. Not only was I unwashed, I had not started packing for the weekend.
Hmm. Actually, I tell a lie. Fraser had packed games for the weekend. It was just that none of our clothes were packed. And nor were the girls’ clothes packed. Yikes!
Packing for Otto is relatively simple. Packing for Biggie is harder, because she tends to complain that I packed things that don’t fit/don’t match. The obvious solutions, to me at least, are:
- pack your own damn clothes
- tell me when things don’t fit, so they don’t stay in your drawers
- get over it.
Ahhh, patience is a wonderful thing.
OMG neither child had any pairs of socks in her drawer! And we had a shopping bag full of odd socks that needed to be matched! I grabbed a bunch of them and quickly assembled about a zillion pairs of socks (where a zillion means somewhere between 20-25).
Memo to self: Only EVER buy the socks with the size woven into the foot. Because OMG they rock! So easy!
There is an odd sense of satisfaction that comes from sitting on the floor and matching pairs of socks. It is particularly odd when you are running OMGREALLYLATE and trying to do heaps of things. Oh well.
Girls’ bags packed, I grabbed stuff for myself (this was a lot easier, mostly because most of my clothes were actually WHERE THEY SHOULD BE), and started packing. Tried out one of the bags we bought for the girls to take away to Europe and first thought, wow this is small, but then realised that it had a deceptive bigness about it. In the end, Fraser packed things in there too, including at least one big fleecy top (I also had a jumper in there).
Yikes! 5 past 2!
Shower, wash hair, dress, grab bucket, drive to school.
Well, yeah. See, for our last week, I thought we might play The Great Dalmuti, and that always goes over best when there are Special Things for Special Roles. I had party hats for the Greater Dalmuti and the Lesser Dalmuti, and a sequinned throw for the Greater Dalmuti’s chair. And a bucket for the Greater Peon to wear as a hat.
Games at school went well. At least one of the kids had played the Great Dalmuti before and kept wanting to play with his own house rule, that you could play ANY NUMBER of the same card on a pile. “It’s faster,” he said. “Yeah,” said one of the kids finally, “But it’s not as good. You don’t get to move as much.”
I had forgotten how much fun The Great Dalmuti can be.
I also had not realised that the kids would need help with such tricky things as
- remembering to sort their cards
- working out which cards they could play on a set (me: “You are in grade 6. I would think you would know what “less than 8″ means.”)
What frustrates me most when gaming, though, is the senseless waste of time between actions. I explained about LOOKING at your cards and WORKING OUT whether there might be a chance you could play something, before it is your turn to play. Kid who has played before complained that it wasn’t as fast as his variant. Etc.
Afterwards, we raced home, to find Fraser there and packed. I grabbed some more stuff and completely forgot to pack my makeup bag which is something I am getting over and Fraser is delighted by. Also managed to forget chargers for my iPod and mobile phone – phone should make it through the weekend, and Gregor has an iPod charger that I am going to borrow (hopefully soon – just checked my battery life – oops). Then we drove to my brother’s to drop off the girls, and headed for Albury.
My Special Mutant Ability is to predict our arrival time. I usually get it within about 8 minutes, sometimes 10-12. Over long distances only – anything within Melbourne is tempered by optimism (OF COURSE we will get away from the house by 7am …). We left Melbourne right on 5, and arrived at our hotel in Albury at 8:03. Perfect timing. We celebrated our first EVER weekend away without the children by listening to the two Geekspeaks with Reiner Knizia, followed by an In Our Time about the trial of Charles I. And people say boardgamers never do anything interesting!
Checked out our room (not the one we have had for the last 3 years, as we don’t have the children with us, but still adequate -although the can of cockroach spray in the cupboard made me wonder). Eventually worked out how to turn on the heater, which was the most important thing, then headed up to the function room.
After saying hello to people, Fraser and I headed out for steak. It wasn’t as good as we remembered, but it was still nice and very filling. I’m thinking we might have to go back tomorrow night too. (The salad was weird – a basic green salad, but with beans and chick peas. Now I *know* how healthy beans and chick peas are, but I just loathe their texture. It was good to be able to smother them in hickory sauce and pretend they weren’t there – healthy *and* not-disgusting. My strawberry daiquiri didn’t hurt, either.)
Back at BorderCon, we said hello to a few people and chatted for a bit. I saw lots of faces I recognised, and remembered lots of names too. This is a big thing for me because I am really good at remembering names – in isolation. I’m not so good at recognising faces, and I’m really really awful at remembering a name that goes with a face – especially in a big group, where I probably met most of the people in another big group. I am, however, *really* good at remembering which first name goes with which last name, and which BGG username goes with that – introduced myself to someone on Saturday and when he gave his last name I could say, oh, we played Settlers at the Expo 3 years ago and you didn’t have a beard then! So I felt a little better.
(As an aside – once, many years ago, I was in the University library and saw my boyfriend-of-2-weeks-or-so – and ducked quickly into the stacks before he saw me, because I wasn’t absolutely 100% sure it was him and it would be really embarassing if I thought it was him and it wasn’t. We had been dating for 2 weeks and I had known him for a couple of years before that. That’s how bad I am with faces.)
If I ever see you, and don’t recognise you or don’t remember your name, please don’t hate me! At Essen last year, I found it was compounded by not remembering which language I was supposed to speak to people in. Very tricky.
Lots of segues tonight.
Anyway – we played Powerboats. With Ben, Neil, James, Me, Fraser and Tim. I don’t think I had met Tim before, but I knew everyone else and even used their names! This is our copy, and Fraser likes it a lot. I enjoy it but more because my boat never seems to quite go in the direction I want it to. Everyone was very enthusiastic during the first race, and then that enthusiasm waned a little during the second. Tim called it quits after 2, which left me feeling confident to do the same, but the others carried on and finished the third. I headed back to our room, fielded a phone call from my mother, then got ready for bed – waiting for Fraser to come down, as we only have one room key.
I have had something weird going on for the last couple of weeks – maybe some sort of virus or inner ear infection, or maybe just the effects of Too Little Sleep – so when I got back to the hotel room, my head was spinning. Well, actually, the room was spinning. Maybe it wasn’t me at all!
And that was Friday.