Monday, January 03, 2011

California Dreamin', Day Five

So the kids have settled on waking up at 5. That's cool: I really haven't adjusted to Cali time so have been waking up at 4. Now that they've been here a few days, they know what they can and cannot do, and putter around their room with new toys before pestering me for breakfast. Again I steal off for a run once Amy is up, marveling at what is old and what is new in my childhood neighborhood.

We head out later that morning to the southern outpost of the church I used to attend in high school. The northern outpost, which Jada and I frequented in August, is in a new location, but the southern outpost is not, so pulling up into the parking lot I am immediately flooded with memories of Friday night youth group and other fun activities.

I had been asked by one of the members to share my testimony, and in fact I get to do so in the Taiwanese and English services. My broken Taiwanese lasts about a minute and a half before I must revert to English and have it translated, but I think the congregants appreciated the effort, even if they had to wince at my pronunciations.

The church was having a big luncheon in honor of a member's 70th birthday, so there was food galore, but we had to take it to go, as we had made lunch plans. We met up with college friends at an all-you-can-eat salad place at a local mall, which afforded everyone's kids ample choices, including dessert, which meant decent opportunity for adult conversation.

I thought for sure that the kids would want to take a nap in the afternoon, but after only a few minutes they were chirping up about wanting to talk to Ama and play with Agong. So that's what they did for the rest of the afternoon. We then walked over to my cousin's house to partake in an impressive array of take-out Chinese and Japanese food in celebration of my birthday. May and Harish came, too, so it was great for the grown-ups to talk and watch football while the kids played with the dog and with toys.

Alas, with Amy's flight looming first thing the next day, we bid an early exit from the party and headed home to pack and get to bed. Yet again, the kids fall fast asleep without a fight shortly after bedtime stories. Life is good.
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