Mister Eclectic (howeird) wrote,
Mister Eclectic

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Nasty nasty night last night, work foo caught up with me, there is a very real chance I will be out of a job in two weeks, or less. Fell asleep at about 3 am, though I was in bed by 11. And then some @#$%^&* rang my phone at 6 am, and hung up after 2 rings. No caller ID. I kind of got back to sleep for another hour, kind of.

The rest of the day helped put the foo in its place.

Loaded up the car for the NorCal Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCV) picnic - two roasting pans worth of Thai yellow curried chicken drumsticks, a faithful old camp stove, two tanks of propane, camera, bike. On inspecting the camp stove, it was missing one of its pair of propane feed attachments, and I remembered one had sprung a leak so I'd tossed it after my last camping trip. I'd seen them at REI, but that's too far in the opposite direction of the picnic, so I scheduled my trip to swing by OSH and Walmart. Neither of them had the gadget, but Walmart had sterno and an inexpensive rack which would serve well as a warming rack. I also picked up extra serving spoons.

I had planned on arriving after noon, but what with the early wake-up call, I was there by 11:30. That gave me time to try the sterno experiment, which did not work - the curry had been in the fridge all night and it was going to take propane to heat it up. It was kind of awkward with only one burner, but by 1 pm when the potluck began, both pans were ready, and one stayed on the camp stove while the other was on the rack over the sterno.

It was quite a spread, with lots of food and desserts which only a gaggle of RPCVs could produce. Something from every continent, and not much repetition. Very yummy, and most of us went back for seconds. The work I'd put into the curry was well worth it - it got lots of compliments, and all that was left to take home was one drumstick and about a half quart of curry base and veggies. Stupid me had tossed the plastic covers for the pans, and thanks to a short stop in Hayward on the way back, my car now smells like curry, and looks like someone puked on the passenger side.

The picnic was sparsely attended compared to the past few years, and a couple of people I'd hoped to see didn't make it, but a lot did, and there were also some new faces. I met two women who had just returned in the last couple of months from their tours, one of them turns out to be a neighbor.

Things broke up at around 3, and I had hoped to ride my bike around the lake a few times, but apparently Saturday is a pedestrians-only day at Lafayette Reservoir, so I just drove home.

Which is when the lack of sleep finally caught up with me. Domino and Pumpkin both kept me company, and I woke up at around 6:30, just in time to get up and dressed and go to Saratoga to see the next-to-last performance of Oklahoma!. I'd seen the preview (which you can read a review of here) and it was worth the second look-see. They had solved most of the audio problems, and while the orchestra was still too loud once in a while, they mostly were not. They were much improved, tuned up, with only one or two lapses in intonation. The conductor standing up was more of a problem this time, since I was in row 3, only two seats left of center. I missed a lot of the action. At $24 a ticket, this really needs to be fixed.

The show had evolved, mostly in a good way. While my review of the cast didn't change any, I saw lots of nuances added which helped the show, but they were all little things, the cast stuck with the original director's vision, and it's a rare tribute to a director when the final performance is almost identical to the preview, only moreso.

No plans for Sunday, though I'll probably take a bike ride with lunch as a halfway stop.

Happy birthday Booter!

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