Monday, April 06, 2015

A San Diego Weekend

This is my Uncle George and Aunt Nathalie:

Every spring they host an Easter brunch for my dad's side of the family.  I've only attended a few times, but I know that good food, great cheeses, fun people, sunshine, and gorgeous flowers in their backyard are guaranteed.  Thus when my parents invited me to join them in San Diego for the holiday weekend, I was eager to accompany them.

I met my parents at DIA early Saturday morning and we had an uneventful flight from chilly recently-snowed Denver to sunny low-80's California.

It was a low-key weekend.  Saturday was bracketed by Greek food and seafood and flushed out with shopping at stores that were definitely NIJ (Not in Junction) and probably NID (Not in Denver):

Rosina, Mom, and I outside the Greek place we went to for lunch.
Mom suffers from garden-envy every time she goes to San Diego and sees flowers like this growing on the street while she sweats and slaves away to get blossoms in the desert of western Colorado.

Daiso - A Japanese dollar store (well, $1.50) with a plethora of goodies and stationary supplies and lots and lots of pink

A grocery store in "Little India"

Piles of rice on the left and different flours on the right

Frozen vegetables I've never heard of (Parval? Guvar? Punjabi Tinda?)

So many tasty-looking ready-meal options!

Giant jars of garlic paste and ginger paste

Ice cream made on the spot with liquid nitrogen.
I tried paan-flavor which, when I asked what it was, the guy described it as "Paan.  It's paan."

The menu at the seafood restaurant where we met the gang for dinner

My cousins, Sadie and Lexi, checking out the sea life with Grandpa Ed

We also watched a couple sketches from the French comedy show "Vous Les Femmes" that Dad gave Rosina on DVD for her birthday. 

Sunday morning dawned cool and sunny.  We arrived at Nathalie and George's place and immediately swooned over their flowers:

Once the cousins showed up, Easter went into full swing with a whirlwind of an egg hunt that left Lexi complaining that her basket was so full of goodies it "made [her] arm hurt!"

While we adults began dishing up the delicious brunch, Lexi and Sadie fell to the serious task of taking inventory:

As it does at such gatherings, the conversation roamed from jobs to upcoming travels to family stories from the past.  Grandpa talked about flying; Dad defended himself against his sisters' accusations of mistreatment in their youth (pigtail-periscopes came up in particular) and Grandma declared that I was to "bring home a Brit" this summer, the only reason to go to Oxford in her opinion.

The weather was perfect, and we all lingered at the table enjoying the breeze and the songs of the birds around us.  Nathalie brought out the lemon-blueberry cake she made in honor of the four April birthdays - Rosina, Mom, Sylvie, and George.

Nathalie swore she added up their ages multiple times to make sure the number was correct.  The birthday people insisted on recalculating, just to make sure, groaning when they realized the total was correct.

They opened presents and George brought out the cat tent so the girls could see Elsie, Nathalie and George's adorable and terrified kitty.

Lexi showing George the story she drew about how Easter was going to go.

Mom, Dad, Sylvie, and me, with Sadie in the foreground on our post-brunch walk

George and Grandpa Ed

Even our much-delayed flight home didn't mar our enjoyment of the weekend.  Mom and Dad were trapped in Denver overnight, and when I stumbled into bed at 1:00 AM I thanked Past Me for arranging coverage of my first period class so I didn't have to get up at 5.  Still, it was wonderful to see the California contingency of my family and be reminded how perfectly wonderful I think they all are.  I hope to visit them again soon!

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