Home, grabbed my cameras and an extra battery, and off to the party. There was no traffic on 237, just a few people driving under the influence of impatience. I pulled into a nearby shopping center because I was half an hour early, and walked through the party supply store, since it was nearby and seemed appropriate. Got to the party on time, but the host was off at Costco picking up the cake. We were taking bets on whether he would return the same day.
Very enjoyable party. A huge spread of home made Thai food, and several Thai wives with their American husbands, so I had my choice of languages. There was only one husband there who had made any effort to learn some Thai, and it was limited to basic words and phrases and the names of the dishes. He had cooked some of them - they were excellent. I only saw one Thai couple, the man talked with an educated Bangkok accent (I could understand most of what he said) but his wife had a Northeastern accent, which was a challenge for me. The host's wife is from the north/northeast, as are many of her friends.
After a while some of my other ex-co-workers from Motorola showed up (the host had been my boss at Terayon, which was bought by Motorola the day I started), and it got very international. My Russian buddy Oleg brought his DDG blonde waif-like bride who apparently does not speak much English (they were married last weekend), We had families from Israel, Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia and at least two American men with Chinese wives.
Lots of conversation, I got to really exercise my Thai, and one of the women said she can find me a Thai wife. After three margaritas, she decided that maybe it would be her. :-)
I'd bought a little stuffed pony as a present, and the birthday girl loved it. She had a ton of presents, it took more than an hour to unwrap them all.
I stayed till about 6:30, went to a nearby Borders to sit and read in their coffee shop. Tried the iced caramel latte, but I didn't like it as much as Starbucks'. I've started reading Rosemary and Rue. Have not read any of Seanan's books because she's deep in the fantasy genre, which I generally dislike. Reading it now partly because of the Campbell Award and partly because it finally dawned on me that when someone you watched grow up** gets a novel published, the least you can do is buy a copy. And why buy a copy if you don't read it? What's funny is I am hearing her voice when I'm reading, which is not really a good thing because although it is written in the first person, the person is not supposed to be Seanan. But it reads so much like her journal that it is difficult to chuck that voice. After two chapters, I have two things to say. It is easy to read, but the fantasy element (which borrows heavily from SCA) is well beyond what I would normally read. I'll try to stick with it to the end, it just means getting past the genre.
**I don't know Seanan very well, but she has been active in Baycon for about a decade and more recently Consonance and I think also Conflikt, and I used to read her LJ regularly till I fell off her FL. And she knows me by name (well, handle).