Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Turkey Day in Rhode Island

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving. I was happy to get out of dodge for a week by spending it with my mom’s side of the family in Middletown, Rhode Island (very near Newport), which is quite possibly my favorite place on planet Earth and also the first time I’ve been out there in over six years. I also got to bring Kyle with me, which as an added bonus. (Who knew a four year old could be so incredibly well behaved while being stuck in a car for 16 hours over two days?)

Despite the fact that the sun didn’t come out once during the week that I was there and on most days it was constantly raining it was a hella good time getting to see my grandparents and the aunts, uncles, and cousins that I’ve not seen for so long. I’m actually the oldest of my grandparents’ eight grandchildren and of those living in the continental US (six of us), I’m the oldest by a good 20 years. Given that the last time I saw most of them, they were toddlers and early elementary aged kids, it was quite a shock to the eye to see how much they’ve grown up and there’s definitely a sense that in being away for so long that I’ve missed out on a lot of memorable times. It made coming home last weekend, not knowing when I’ll next get the chance to go back, a difficult thing to do.

It’s also weird to be the only grandchild at the Thanksgiving Day dinner table throwing back glasses of wine like like I’m Paul Giamatti in the movie Sideways. Fortunately, such behavior didn’t separate me much from any of the other parents at the table. I really don’t want to know how many bottles of wine and champagne were consumed on that day, but I’m sure it was not a small number.

In the evening we all sat down to watch the movie Christmas Vacation, which is the first time any of the kids had seen this wonderful flick. Watching them all gathered round and just dying of laughter in some of the scenes was as perfect a moment as one can have. Makes me wish I could just move out there, but reality is reality, and such a move isn’t really an option anymore. Ah well.

Anyway, over the course of the next week or two I plan to write a bit more about Dragon Age. I’m starting a second playthrough this week, this time running with the mage origin, so that should be interesting. I don’t recall the last time I finished a game this long and restarted immediately after it was over. (I did attempt that with Fallout 3, but the attempt may have lasted about six hours.) I’ve also been able to put some time into Left 4 Dead 2 (360 version), so I’ll need to write up some thoughts on that as well.